How Can We Know If Jesus Is God?

Jesus claimed to be God. How do we know this is true? John Burke looks at evidence from the Bible and history that indicate Jesus is God.

Questions for Discussion and Personal Reflection

  1. Why is it easier to believe that all religions are the same and eventually will lead people to God?
  2. Does it seem possible that, if there is a God, he could send someone to earth to tell others about him?

There's this, uh, parable that's pretty common. It's a Jain parable. Um, four blind men, uh, describing an elephant. And one grabbed the elephant's trunk and, uh, and said, "An elephant is like a hose," and the other pushed his hands on the, the side of the elephant and said, "No, an elephant's like a wall." And the other grabbed him around the leg and said, "No, a, an elephant's like a tree," and the other one grabbed its tail and said, "No, an elephant's like a snake." And the, the idea is that that's the world's religions describing the same God, which I think is partially true. It's like, if God hasn't revealed himself, then we really are just blind and guessing. But the problem with that is that an elephant is actually nothing like a hose, a snake, a, a tree, or a wall. And elephant's like an elephant and it's unique, and so what those blind men really need is someone who's truly seen an elephant to describe an elephant. You know, what's unique about Jesus is that there is no other, uh, religious leader of, of the world's religions that has claimed to actually have come from God and to have seen and to be able to describe what God is like. And, you know, people say, "Well, yeah, that's a, that's a great thought but, uh, it's just probably myth." But actually God put into history signs and markers so that we could know it really was true, that it really was from him. You know, the Old Testament is, is not one book. It's actually 39 books written by about 40 different authors over a period of about 1,500 years, and, and all throughout, God was foretelling when he would actually send this Messiah, this one who would reveal the unseen God in a, a way we could relate to. And it foretold when that would happen. Um, I mean, to, to the, to the time and the place. Like, it'll happen in Jerusalem and before, uh, the, the temple is destroyed. Well, that's real history, uh, because the temple was destroyed by the Roman General Titus in 70 AD and it still hasn't been rebuilt to this day. Uh, in the Dead Sea scrolls, in, in 1947, the Dead Sea scrolls were found and in it, we found copies of every book of the Old Testament, um, including a complete copy of the book of Isaiah predating Jesus so we know now that all these things were written down before Jesus. It wasn't like well, Jesus came along and they went and doctored it up to make it look like it was foretelling him. No, we know. It was written down before he ever came. Go read Isaiah 53. It's amazing how it foretells the, the, the crucifixion of Jesus and not only that that would happen— that he would be pierced through his hands and his feet— but why. So there are lots of reasons like that to, to realize this isn't just myth. You know, and I thought, that's what I thought. I thought it was myth. But I just hadn't taken the time to really look.