Preview The Only True God

I was looking for a reference (one that I remembered citing before in discussions of the use of “God” in a broader sense in the context of early Jewish and Jewish-Christian monotheism), and found it – embedded in a preview of my book The Only True God on Google Books! So I thought I’d share it here – perhaps it will persuade a few more people to buy their own copy.

When it comes to matters of the Christology of John’s Gospel, I have even more to say in my first book, John’s Apologetic Christology: Legitimation and Development in Johannine Christology (Society for New Testament Studies Monograph Series), which can also be previewed.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08597511645534603563 Walter

    I already own The Only True God. Great book! The second book sounds fascinating, but 'tis a little steep on the price for us po' folks :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    So we have the gospel of John and all of this vast explanation. But you have yet to deal with Jesus being called the Almighty in Rev 1:7-8. We can haggle over terms like "Lord" and "God" all day long, but there is only one Almighty.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    Um, are you assuming that it is Jesus speaking in v8? I took a look at the commentaries I have to hand (Aune, Beasley-Murray, Talbert) and none understood it that way. What leads you to do so?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    7 "Behold, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him, and all tribes of the earth will wail on account of him. Even so. Amen.8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”It is extremely obvious that is is referring to Jesus. Every single read letter Bible there is, attributes these words to Christ. Who is "coming"? Jesus. Who was "pierced"? Jesus. Who "was"? Jesus.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    I just checked the Greek and they aren't in red – does that settle it? :)Every commentator I've looked at takes the fact that it specifies "says the Lord God", and the fact that this phrase is used of God in distinction from Christ elsewhere in Revelation, to indicate that the one speaking here is not the one depicted as coming in the preceding verse. God and Christ are mentioned alongside one another throughout the book; why should the same not be the case here?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    James,Verse 8 also says "who is to COME"! How can the Father be descibed as "who WAS"? The Father never died!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    Compare Rev 1:8 and 22:12Revelation 22:12 "And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last."Both are the words of Jesus Christ, the Almighty God.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02561146722461747647 James F. McGrath

    When referring to God, the reference is presumably to God's eternity – past, present and future existence. Whether this designation, like "Alpha and Omega" and "Lord" and various others, applies to Jesus in precisely the same way, or instead indicates a reference to death, resurrection, and future coming is a good one.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    James,There are numerous titles and qualities that are given to both God and Jesus: Savior, Lord, First and Last, Redeemer, Sheperd, Rock, Truth, Life, etc.Also the prophecy in Isaiah 6:9 calls Jesus the "everlating Father". So just who is this Jesus anyway?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    correction – Isaiah 9:6 6 "For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."Please note "MIGHTY GOD" and "EVERLASTING FATHER".

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00769117142960558423 Northlander

    Also the prophecy in Isaiah 6:9 calls Jesus the "everlating Father".Indeed, we are still waiting.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16714212596340205650 Wanting Truth

    Waiting for what?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00769117142960558423 Northlander

    Waiting for what?The everlating eschaton.

  • Antonio Jerez

    Chris,I think you are wasting James precious time. The "prophecy" in Isaiah 16:9 in definitely not about Jesus. Christians from Paul and onwards have traditionally thought so but those readings have as much grounding in reality as the follies of all the folks who read whatever they want into the "prophecies" of Nostradamus.


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