Daniel P. Barron

How do you know that Jesus is literally the Bible?

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Finn: My question is, how do you know that Jesus is literally the Bible? In John 1:1, it says, "the Word became flesh and took up residence among us." This is obviously referring to Jesus. However, I would argue that this verse doesn't mean that Jesus = the Bible. The Greek word used for "the Word" in here is "Logos". Logos simply mean "spoken word", and is used many times in Scripture to refer to just things people had said (https://biblehub.com/greek/strongs_3056.htm). In contrast, "graphēn" is the Greek word used for "Scripture" in other parts of the New Testament (https://biblehub.com/greek/strongs_1124.htm). This seems to indicate that John 1:1 is not referring to Jesus as "the Bible", but instead is personifying Jesus as the "Word" to symbolize how he was the revelation of the good news of God's glory to men (https://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-Word-God.html).
Scripture: John 1:1 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

The Word Became Flesh
<1> In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Scripture: John 1:1 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

The Word Became Flesh
<1> In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Darwin: In John 10:35i Jesus uses logos for graphe. Also, Mark 7:13;ii John 8:55;iii 17:17;iv Romans 9:6;v 1 Timothy 4:4;vi Hebrews 4:12;vii Revelation 17:17viii at least include the written word (graphe). Moreover, you can see in the Septuagint (LXX) the use of logos for the written word in Exodus 34:28ix and Deuteronomy 10:4.x There logous is used for the Ten Commandments, which is a clear reference to the written word. Furthermore, the written word is not so far removed from the spoken word, for the written word is the written form of the spoken word of God.
Darwin: For example, logos is used in Deuteronomy 32:47xi (LXX) for "this word" (logou) and the context is both the words (logous) Moses spoke that day and the words (logous) of "this law." Also, further examples of logos in the LXX can be found in Psalm 119 (speaking of the written word, the “law of the Lord” vs 1) in verses 9,xii 16-17,xiii 28,xiv 42,xv 74,xvi 101,xvii 147,xviii 160-161xix all in the plural, and in the singular, verses 25,xx 65,xxi 81,xxii 89,xxiii 105,xxiv 107,xxv 114,xxvi 154.xxvii
Scripture: Deuteronomy 32:47 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

<47> For it is no trifle for you, but it is your life, and thereby you shall live long in the land which you are going over the Jordan to possess."

Darwin: RSV, that's not good translation on that verse. NKJV says, "For it is not a futile thing for you, because it is your life, and by this word you shall prolong your days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to possess."
Finn: @Darwin my point was not that logos is never used to mean something other than just "spoken" or "written" words. My point was that from John 1 alone, you cannot claim that Jesus = the Bible
Finn: Scripture is often referred to as "logos" because it is literally made up of words, but that doesn't mean that whenever the word logos is used, it means "the Bible". Most of the time, the words logos just means "words/word" (either spoken or written).
Darwin: Is Jesus the Word of God (Rev 19:13)?
Scripture: Revelation 19:13 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<13> He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.

Finn: Yes he is
Finn: But that doesn't necessarily mean that Jesus = the Bible. Logos is used many other times in Scripture to refer to things other than Jesus https://biblehub.com/greek/strongs_3056.htm
Darwin: Is the Scripture the Word of God (John 10:35)?
Scripture: John 10:35 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<35> If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken),

Finn: Many things are the "word of God". Every time a prophet speaks in the Old Testament, they are speaking the "word of God". The Old Testament law is considered the "word of God". But my point is that "word of God" doesn't mean "Bible".
Finn: The Scripture is God's word, yes. But when I say "God's word", i could be referring to an individual book of the Bible, I could be referring to an answer to prayer, or I could be referring to the words of Jesus. Again, "word of God" doesn't necessarily mean "the Bible".
Finn: And it almost never means "the Bible in its entirety"
Darwin: The Word of God is indeed not limited to Genesis-Revelation (Scripture, the Bible). The Heavens declare His Word (Psalm 19). Wisdom (His Word) cries out to men (Pro 8) and all men everywhere are without excuse (Romans 1:18f). Hebrews 4:12-13
Scripture: Hebrews 4:12-13 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<12> For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. <13> And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.

Darwin: It is all "the Word of God" (Rev 19:13)
Scripture: Revelation 19:13 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<13> He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.

Darwin: We must all give account to Him, Christ
Darwin: The word of God
Finn: How would you translate the word "logos" in these verses (just from the book of Matthew): Matthew 5:37, Matthew 10:14, Matthew 12:32, and Matthew 18:23?
Scripture: Matthew 5:37 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

<37> Let what you say be simply 'Yes' or 'No'; anything more than this comes from evil.

Darwin: Feel free to look for yourself, 800howtrue.com/GodsHolyWord.pdf
Finn: Could you maybe just tell me, because I don't feel like reading a 500 page pdf right now XD
Daniel:

[37] But let your word be, yes yes,1 no no.2 But what is more than these is from the evil one."3

  1. (nai nai) - "yes yes"
  2. (ou ou) - "no no"
  3. See also James 5:12. For bad examples of swearing, see Matthew 23:16-22; 26:72-74. God swears (e.g. Psalm 89:35-36; Isaiah 45:23; 62:8; Jeremiah 22:5; 44:26; 49:13; 51:14; Amos 4:2; 6:8; 8:7; Acts 2:30; Hebrews 3:11; 4:3; 7:21, NT passages have same Greek word for swear). Angels swear (e.g. Daniel 12:7; Revelation 10:6). Men swear (Genesis 31:53; Nehemiah 13:25; Isaiah 65:15-16). Jeremiah 12:16-17 parallels obedience with swearing, and reveals "as the Lord lives" = swearing. "As the Lord lives" is stated many times by God (e.g. Numbers 14:20, 23, 28; Deuteronomy 32:40; Jeremiah 22:24) and men (e.g. 1 Samuel 19:6; 20:3; 28:10; 1 Kings 1:29-30). Note also Hebrews 6:13-18 (Genesis 22:15-16). Finally, only those who swear (the right way) abide with God, Psalm 15:4 (see also 63:11).

Daniel:

[14] And whoever does not receive you nor hear your words, when you go out of the house or that city, shake off the dust from your feet.1

  1. Acts 13:50-51

Scripture: Acts 13:50-51 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<50> But the Jews stirred up the devout and prominent women and the chief men of the city, raised up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them from their region. <51> But they shook off the dust from their feet against them, and came to Iconium.

Daniel:

[32] And he who speaks a word against the son of the man, it will be forgiven him. But he who speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, not in the now1 age nor in the one about to be."2

  1. nun (nun) - "now" - Received and Critical Text have (toutô) "this."
  2. (mellonti) - "about to be", used in this way e.g. Acts 16:27 (see also Luke 7:2; John 4:47 "at the point of")

Scripture: Acts 16:27 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<27> And the keeper of the prison, awaking from sleep and seeing the prison doors open, supposing the prisoners had fled, drew his sword and was about to kill himself.

Scripture: Luke 7:2 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<2> And a certain centurion's servant, who was dear to him, was sick and ready to die.

Scripture: John 4:47 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<47> When he heard that Jesus had come out of Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and implored Him to come down and heal his son, for he was at the point of death.

Daniel:

[23] For this reason, the kingdom of the heavens is like a certain king who desired to settle a matter1 with his servants.

  1. (logon) - "a matter"

Finn: So my point in bringing up those verses was to show that "logos" doesn't always mean "Jesus" or "the Bible". It also can just meant a spoken/written word.
Finn: We really don't know if those verses you referenced (Revelation 19:13, John 1:1) are talking about the Bible as a whole, or just generally talking about the something that God says (even outside the Bible). A third option is that the Bible is using "the Word" as an analogy and not literally (this would make sense for John 1:1).
Scripture: Revelation 19:13 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

<13> He is clad in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God.

Scripture: John 1:1 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

The Word Became Flesh
<1> In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Scripture: John 1:1 - Revised Standard Version (RSV)

The Word Became Flesh
<1> In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Darwin: If you believed the Word of God, you'd know (John 8:47).
Scripture: John 8:47 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<47> He who is of God hears God's words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God."

Darwin: Do you believe Christ is the Wisdom of God? 1 Corinthians 1:24
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 1:24 - New King James Version (NKJV)

<24> but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

  1. John 10:
    35 If He called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken),

  2. Mark 7:
    13 making the word of God of no effect through your tradition which you have handed down. And many such things you do.”

  3. John 8:
    55 Yet you have not known Him, but I know Him. And if I say, ‘I do not know Him,’ I shall be a liar like you; but I do know Him and keep His word.

  4. John 17:
    17 Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.

  5. Romans 9:
    6 But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel,

  6. 1 Timothy 4:
    4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving;

  7. Hebrews 4:
    12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

  8. Revelation 17:
    17 For God has put it into their hearts to fulfill His purpose, to be of one mind, and to give their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God are fulfilled.

  9. Exodus 34:
    28 So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread nor drank water. And He wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the Ten Commandments.

  10. Deuteronomy 10:
    4 And He wrote on the tablets according to the first writing, the Ten Commandments, which the Lord had spoken to you in the mountain from the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly; and the Lord gave them to me.

  11. Deuteronomy 32:
    47 For it is not a futile thing for you, because it is your life, and by this word you shall prolong your days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to possess.”

  12. Psalm 119:
    9 How can a young man cleanse his way?
    By taking heed according to Your word.

  13. Psalm 119:
    16 I will delight myself in Your statutes;
    I will not forget Your word.
    17 Deal bountifully with Your servant,
    That I may live and keep Your word.

  14. Psalm 119:
    28 My soul melts from heaviness;
    Strengthen me according to Your word.

  15. Psalm 119:
    42 So shall I have an answer for him who reproaches me,
    For I trust in Your word.

  16. Psalm 119:
    74 Those who fear You will be glad when they see me,
    Because I have hoped in Your word.

  17. Psalm 119:
    101 I have restrained my feet from every evil way,
    That I may keep Your word.

  18. Psalm 119:
    147 I rise before the dawning of the morning,
    And cry for help;
    I hope in Your word.

  19. Psalm 119:
    160 The entirety of Your word is truth,
    And every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever.
    161 Princes persecute me without a cause,
    But my heart stands in awe of Your word.

  20. Psalm 119:
    25 My soul clings to the dust;
    Revive me according to Your word.

  21. Psalm 119:
    65 You have dealt well with Your servant,
    O Lord, according to Your word.

  22. Psalm 119:
    81 My soul faints for Your salvation,
    But I hope in Your word.

  23. Psalm 119:
    89 Forever, O Lord,
    Your word is settled in heaven.

  24. Psalm 119:
    105 Your word is a lamp to my feet
    And a light to my path.

  25. Psalm 119:
    107 I am afflicted very much;
    Revive me, O Lord, according to Your word.

  26. Psalm 119:
    114 You are my hiding place and my shield;
    I hope in Your word.

  27. Psalm 119:
    154 Plead my cause and redeem me;
    Revive me according to Your word.

3 Responses

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