Refuting Osama Abdallah on Jeremiah 23:5-6

A Defense of the Revelation of the Messiah’s Deity in the Old Testament

Sam Shamoun

Osama Abdallah has challenged Christians (*), specifically myself, to show where in the Holy Bible is Jesus ever called Yahweh God. Since Osama has broken his section into three parts we will follow suit:

1- Refuting Osama’s denial that the OT lays the foundation for the truth of the glorious Trinity.
2- Jesus’ royal and ancestral lineage and its implications for Osama’s beliefs as a Muslim.
3- Osama’s Challenge Addressed and Refuted: The Bible does call Jesus Yahweh.

All biblical citations will be taken from the Revised Standard Version (RSV) unless noted otherwise.


1. Refuting Osama’s denial that the OT lays the foundation for the truth of the glorious Trinity.

Osama begins his paper by making the following false accusation:

On Paltalk, I asked Sam Shamoun the following question: "Show us in the Bible where Jesus was called Yahweh?" After Shamoun halted for several seconds, and started scrambling, he gave the following Verse from the Bible's Old Testament:

"Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth.  In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.  (From the NIV Bible, Jeremiah 23:5-6)"

RESPONSE:

We must correct Osama’s misinformation about my alleged scrambling and hesitation, since there was no halting or scrambling on my part. Furthermore, Osama in the Paltalk room asked me to specifically show him where in the Old Testament is Jesus ever called Yahweh since I was dealing with the OT basis for the Trinity. In what Osama has written here one can get the very misleading impression that Osama was asking for a verse from any part of the Holy Bible, i.e. from either the Old or New Testaments. Later on in our rebuttal we will show from the New Testament where the inspired authors specifically call Jesus Yahweh.

In my Paltalk discussion I said to Osama that his question was rather easy to answer and posed no real problem to the Trinitarian position, and demonstrated this point by then citing Jeremiah 23:5-6. Let me again post the passage in question in order to help the readers see the point that is being made:

"Behold, the days come, saith Jehovah, that I will raise unto David A RIGHTEOUS Branch, and he shall reign AS KING and deal wisely, and shall execute justice AND RIGHTEOUSNESS in the land. In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is HIS NAME whereby he shall be called: Jehovah our righteousness (Yahweh tsidkenű)." ASV

The branch from David, the King who acts wisely and righteously is called Yahweh tsidkęnű. As one can glean from the text itself, the reason the Davidic King is called this name is because he shall usher in national salvation and righteousness, i.e., this Messianic King is the source of righteousness and vindication. Jeremiah wasn’t the only one to make this claim, albeit by divine revelation. Other prophets made similar statements about the Messiah:

"In that day THE BRANCH of the LORD shall be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the land shall be the pride and glory of the survivors of Israel. And he who is left in Zion and remains in Jerusalem will be called holy, every one who has been recorded for life in Jerusalem, when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and cleansed the bloodstains of Jerusalem from its midst by a spirit of judgment and by a spirit of burning. Then the LORD will create over the whole site of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, and smoke and the shining of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory there will be a canopy and a pavilion. It will be for a shade by day from the heat, and for a refuge and a shelter from the storm and rain." Isaiah 4:2-6

"But there will be no gloom for her that was in anguish. In the former time he brought into contempt the land of Zeb'ulun and the land of Naph'tali, but in the latter time he will make glorious the way of the sea, the land beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the nations. The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined… For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government will be upon his shoulder, and his name will be called ‘Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God (El Gibbor), Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.’ Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David, and over his kingdom, to establish it, and to uphold it with justice and with RIGHTEOUSNESS from this time forth and for evermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this." Isaiah 9:1-2, 6-7

"There shall come forth A SHOOT from the stump of Jesse, and A BRANCH shall grow out of his roots. And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD. And his delight shall be in the fear of the LORD. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear; but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall slay the wicked. Righteousness shall be the girdle of his waist, and faithfulness the girdle of his loins. The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid, and the calf and the lion and the fatling together, and a little child shall lead them. The cow and the bear shall feed; their young shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. The sucking child shall play over the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the adder's den. They shall not hurt or destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea. In that day the ROOT of Jesse shall stand as an ensign to the peoples; him shall the nations seek, and his dwellings shall be glorious." Isaiah 11:1-10

"Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? He grew up before him like a tender SHOOT, and like a ROOT out of dry ground ... Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand. After the suffering of his soul, He will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will JUSTIFY many, and he will bear their iniquities. Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors." Isaiah 53:1-2, 10-12 NIV

The preceding passages from Isaiah link the Branch of God to the family of Jesse, the father of King David. Thus, Isaiah, in agreement with Jeremiah, states that the Branch is a descendent of King David who will usher in peace and righteousness as he sits enthroned as King. And much like Jeremiah, Isaiah also ascribes divine titles and functions to this Branch calling him the Mighty God and stating that he will justify (or make righteous) many by bearing their sins.

In light of the foregoing we can now turn to Osama’s response to my appeal and exegesis of Jeremiah 23:5-6:

Shamoun's nonsensical point was that David's Branch, who according to the Old Testament must come from David's son Solomon's blood line (2 Samuel 7:14, 1 Chronicle 17:11-14, 22:9-10 and 28:4-6), will be a King who will reign and prosper, and will execute judgement and justice in the earth, and his name will be "The LORD OUR RIGHTEOUS" or "JEHOVAH OUR RIGHTEOUS".

Note: The linked verses are displayed in details in the section below.

To ordinary readers, this sounds like a sound and irrefutable proof that Jesus is indeed Yahweh Almighty! However, I have written a well-documented article that EXPOSES THE TRINITARIANS' LIES, especially in their English translations to prove that Jesus is their god. Many people before and after Jesus in the Bible were given GODLY names similar to the one above in Jeremiah 23:6.  Let us look at few of them:

RESPONSE:

In the first place, Osama is blatantly wrong when he asserts that other persons were given names similar to that given to the Messiah. There is no other specific person in the entire OT who is given the name Yahweh Our Righteousness, or even the title Mighty God for that matter. The closest we get to someone having a name that resembles the one given in Jeremiah 23:6 is Zedekiah, but this name isn’t at all identical. More on this below.

Osama continues:

From www.answering-christianity.com/godtitle.htm:

1- Ezekiel means "Strong God".  It also means "Yahweh is Strong God".
......
3- Gabriel also means "Strong God".

4- Isaiah or Jesaiah means "Salvation from Yahweh".  It could also mean "Salvation".

5- Joshua means "Yahweh Saves".

6- Elli, which is a common name for men before and after Jesus, means "God".   Psalm 82:6  "I said, 'You are "gods"; you are all sons of the Most High.' "  "gods" here in Hebrew is "Elohim", which is plural of "EL".  It is the same exact thing as "EL" used for Jesus in Isaiah 9:6, since "gods" is a combination of several "EL"s.  And as clearly shown here, for someone to be called "god" or "God" in the Bible it wouldn't make him GOD Almighty Himself, the LORD or Jehovah.  I also want to point out that ANY "Son of GOD" in the Bible is a "god" or "God" as clearly shown in Psalm 82:6.

Note:  The trinitarian liars who translate the Bible into English play dirty tricks about capitalizing and lowering the "g" in "God" to prove their trinity lie, while they fully know that it is the same word used for ALL!

............

RESPONSE:

To begin with Elohim is the plural of Eloah not of El. Elim is the plural of El, so Osama is wrong regarding Psalm 82:6 being the same exact thing as El Gibbor in Isaiah 9:6.

Second, Osama candidly admits that Isaiah 9:6 does refer to the Lord Jesus Christ, whereas in other articles he actually denies that it does. In the following article Osama tries to prove that Isaiah 9 actually refers to Hezekiah:

... In the verse under study, the prophet expounds his message by formulating a prophetic name for Hezekiah. The words of this name form a sentence expressive of God's greatness, which will become manifest in the benefits to be bestowed upon the future king in his lifetime. Thus, the name, though borne by the king, serves, in reality, as a testimonial to God.

Hezekiah is called "a wonderful counselor" because this name is a sign, which foretells God's design for him ...

Hezekiah is called "the mighty God" because this name is a sign that foretells God's defense of Jerusalem through the miraculous sudden mass death of Sennacherib's army ...

The fact remains that Jesus did not literally or figuratively fulfill any of Isaiah's words. A wonderful counselor does not advise his followers that if they have faith they can be agents of destruction (Matthew 21:19-21; Mark 11:14, 20-23). A mighty God does not take orders from anyone (Luke2:51, Hebrews 5:8), for no one is greater than he is (Matthew 12:31-32; John 5:30, 14:28). Moreover, he does not ask or need to be saved by anyone (Matthew 26:39, Luke 22:42), for he cannot die by any means (Matthew 27:50, Mark 15:37, Luke 23:46, John 19:30). He who is called the Son of God the Father (John 1:18, 3:16) cannot himself be called everlasting Father. One cannot play simultaneously the role of the son and the Father; it is an obvious self-contradiction. He who advocates family strife (Matthew 10:34-35, Luke 12:49-53) and killing enemies (Luke 19:27) cannot be called a ruler of peace. (Source)

Thus, Osama seems to be changing his position from one paper to another, a clear indication of just how confused he is about what the Holy Bible actually teaches. For the evidence showing that Isaiah 9 is not speaking of Hezekiah, please consult this article.

Third, Psalm 82:6 in no way supports Osama’s claim that a Son of God in the Holy Bible is a god or God. For more on Psalm 82:6-7 please read our article on John 10:34-36.

Finally, Osama lumps all Trinitarian translators together as liars and implies that there is some sort of conspiracy behind their choosing to either capitalize the g in God, or to write it in lower case. Now either Osama is God because he apparently knows the motives of all these men’s hearts, or this is simply another indication of Osama’s ad hominem attacks coming into play. His comments reflect more of Osama’s paranoia than it does reality.

The possible reason why many of these translators (if not all) choose to write God with a lower case g when used of others besides Yahweh is because they presumably are aware that the Holy Bible says that Yahweh alone is God. We can safely assume that they are also aware of the fact that the consistent teaching of the Holy Bible is that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit all exist as this one true God, having all the attributes of the one eternal God. After all, they are Trinitarians for a reason. Thus, the translators will use the lower case for God or gods when the text is speaking of other beings that are not Yahweh God, but will retain the capital g in God when the text is referring to either Yahweh God Almighty or to any of the three eternal Persons of the Godhead.

But since Osama impugns the motives and integrity of all Trinitarian Bible translators, we return the favor and call his attention to the following section dealing with Muslim translators and their less than honest handling of the Quranic text: www.answering-islam.org/Quran/Versions/.

We return to Osama’s list:

8- Elihu means "My God is He".

9- Gedaliah means "Jehovah is Great". People before and after Jesus are given this name. See 2 Kings 25:22-24.

10- Eliadah or Eliada means "God knows".
............
12- Elzaphan means "God is Protector"

13- Eliakim means "God raises".

14- Elisha means "God is Salvation".

As you CLEARLY can see, the "LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS" title that is given in Jeremiah 23:6 is no different than any of the JEWISH NAMES GIVEN TO PEOPLE AT BIRTH above.  It's just another GODly name that Jews traditionally have made up to name each others, which obviously had contributed to the world-wide catastrophe of the polytheist trinity pagan lie that was created 1700 years ago (trinity being invented and born around year 300 by Constantine)!!

RESPONSE:

Several responses are necessary in order to correct Osama’s gross false analogy and misunderstanding. First, as was already stated above, the title in Jeremiah 23:6 isn’t like the other names and titles listed by Osama. We also do not find this title used anywhere else for any other person. So Osama’s claim that the title is one of the Godly names that Jews traditionally give to each other is blatantly false.

Furthermore, Osama fails to distinguish between proper names of persons as descriptions of specific characteristics of the particular Deity worshiped by the individual bearing that specific name, with titles and/or names that describe the person's own nature or character.

The technical term for names that contain elements of the Divine name is theophoric onomastica. Names such as Elijah (My God is Yah) and Elihu (My God is he) are theophoric since they contain elements of God’s name, just as Osama correctly noted. These names are describing the Deity worshiped or believed in by Elijah and Elihu. The names are not intended to describe the characteristics of either Elijah or Elihu.

However, Osama seems to erroneously assume that the names given to the Messianic King are a reflection of the God he serves as opposed to being descriptions of the Messiah’s very own nature and character. The immediate problem with Osama’s assertion is that the name Yahweh tsidkenű is different than all other names that bear a divine element such as Elijah - or virtually all names ending in iah such as Jeremiah (representing yah in Hebrew) - or, names including ’el, God, or ’adon, Lord. The difference is that whereas the elements ’el and ’adon are spelled out in full (in names such as Ammiel or Adonizedek), names that contain the divine name Yahweh always use it in abbreviated form, either at the beginning (represented by names such as Jehoram or Jehu) or at the end (represented by names ending in iah or jah). It is only in connection with the Messianic King do we find the Lord’s name written in full.

To help clarify this point, contrast the name Yahweh tsidkenű with the name Zedekiah. Zedekiah in Hebrew is tsidkiyahű, "Yahweh is my righteousness." Note that in the former case the divine name is spelled out fully, whereas in the case with Zedekiah it is abbreviated. We also know that Zedekiah is not a description of the king since he was anything but righteous:

"Then Jeremiah said to them: Thus you shall say to Zedeki'ah, ‘Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel: Behold, I will turn back the weapons of war which are in your hands and with which you are fighting against the king of Babylon and against the Chalde'ans who are besieging you outside the walls; and I will bring them together into the midst of this city. I myself will fight against you with outstretched hand and strong arm, in anger, and in fury, and in great wrath. And I will smite the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast; they shall die of a great pestilence. Afterward, says the LORD, I will give Zedeki'ah king of Judah, and his servants, and the people in this city who survive the pestilence, sword, and famine, into the hand of Nebuchadrez'zar king of Babylon and into the hand of their enemies, into the hand of those who seek their lives. He shall smite them with the edge of the sword; he shall not pity them, or spare them, or have compassion.’" Jeremiah 21:3-7

Therefore, the name Zedekiah describes the Deity whom the king was to serve and worship, i.e., Yahweh as the righteous God in whom people find their vindication.

But in the case of the Messianic Branch we do know that this is a description of his own character since he himself is righteous as the context shows:

"... a RIGHTEOUS Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and RIGHTEOUSNESS in the land ... And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The LORD is our RIGHTEOUSNESS.’" Jeremiah 23:5-6

The Messiah is righteous and ushers in righteousness because he is Yahweh our Righteousness, the One in whom we receive and find our vindication. Thus, Jeremiah is equating this King with Yahweh himself! The passage in Jeremiah demonstrates that the Messiah would be the complete embodiment of what the name actually represents. Hence, the title Yahweh our Righteousness signifies that the Messiah would be the manifestation of Yahweh God himself coming to dwell with his people in order to usher in their vindication and justification.

Furthermore, as we mentioned above, the prophet Isaiah calls the Messiah the Mighty God [El Gibbor - cf. Isa. 9:6], a title never used by Isaiah for anyone but Yahweh God:

"In that day the remnant of Israel and the survivors of the house of Jacob will no more lean upon him that smote them, but will lean upon the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God (El Gibbor)." Isaiah 10:20-21

In light of the foregoing, we can safely conclude that the names that the prophets give to the Messiah by divine inspiration are not simply descriptions of the God whom the Messiah serves. They rather describe the Messiah’s own divine nature and characteristics, and highlight the divine works that Messiah performs by virtue of his being fully divine.


2. Jesus’ royal and ancestral lineage and its implications for Osama’s beliefs as a Muslim

Osama now tries to attack Jesus’ Messiahship by making reference to his lineage. He enlists the help of Jews for Judaism, an organization devoted to undermining the Messianic claims of the Lord Jesus Christ:

Also, Jesus WAS NOT from King Solomon's blood!!

Another blow to the trinity lie that Mr. Shamoun believes in is that Jeremiah 23:5-6 along with 2 Samuel 7:14, 1 Chronicle 17:11-14, 22:9-10 and 28:4-6 above are talking about a King coming from David's blood line. Not only from David's blood line, but he also has to be specifically from King Solomon's (King David's son) blood line. So in other words, the Messiah can not even be from Nathan's (King David's other son) blood line:

"I will be his father, and he will be my son. When he does wrong, I will punish him with the rod of men, with floggings inflicted by men. (From the NIV Bible, 2 Samuel 7:14)"

"When your days are over and you go to be with your fathers, I will raise up your offspring to succeed you, one of your own sons, and I will establish his kingdom. He is the one who will build a house for me, and I will establish his throne forever. I will be his father, and he will be my son. I will never take my love away from him, as I took it away from your predecessor. I will set him over my house and my kingdom forever; his throne will be established forever.' "  (From the NIV Bible, 1 Chronicles 17:11-14)"

"But you will have a son who will be a man of peace and rest, and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side. His name will be Solomon, and I will grant Israel peace and quiet during his reign. He is the one who will build a house for my Name. He will be my son, and I will be his father. And I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever.' (From the NIV Bible, 1 Chronicles 22:9-10)"

" "Yet the LORD , the God of Israel, chose me from my whole family to be king over Israel forever. He chose Judah as leader, and from the house of Judah he chose my family, and from my father's sons he was pleased to make me king over all Israel. Of all my sons-and the LORD has given me many-he has chosen my son Solomon to sit on the throne of the kingdom of the LORD over Israel. 6 He said to me: 'Solomon your son is the one who will build my house and my courts, for I have chosen him to be my son, and I will be his father.  (From the NIV Bible, 1 Chronicles 28:4-6)"

* The above verses were found at: www.jewsforjudaism.org.

To claim that Jesus was a Messiah is onething.  But to say that he was from King David's blood line is preposterous!  The reason for this is because Jesus has no biological earthly father, and therefore, he CAN NOT be the Messiah that Mr. Shamoun referred to in Jeremiah 23:5-6.  And even if he was, this still doesn't prove jack about him being the GOD Almighty of this Universe!

RESPONSE:

Osama apparently doesn’t see the dilemma he has placed himself in. The whole intent of the Jews for Judaism’s article isn’t to simply show that Jesus wasn’t a King, but that he wasn’t even the Messiah!

The Jewish Messiah: The Criteria

The Jewish tradition of "The Messiah" has its foundation in numerous biblical references, and understands "The Messiah" to be a human being - without any overtone of deity or divinity - who will bring about certain changes in the world and fulfill certain criteria before he can be acknowledged as "The Messiah". …

He must be a direct male descendant of King David and King Solomon, his son - "And when your days (David) are fulfilled, and you shall sleep with your fathers, I will set up your seed after you, who shall issue from your bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will make firm the throne of his kingdom forever..." (2 Samuel 7:12 - 13) (Source: www.jewsforjudaism.org/web/faq/general-messiah-criteria.html)

Notice carefully that Jews for Judaism are speaking of the criteria for being the Jewish Messiah, not simply for being King. Osama has falsely distinguished Messiahship from royalty since he fails to realize that being the Messiah also meant being the Davidic King. The Jews for Judaism do realize this and do not make any distinction between the two since they know that this is what the Hebrew Scriptures teach about the Jewish Messiah.

Osama wanted to have his cake and then eat it too, but in reality he is now in a vicious dilemma. Being a Muslim Osama must believe that Jesus is the Messiah of God as the following Quranic verse shows:

(And remember) when the angels said: O Mary! Lo! Allah giveth thee glad tidings of a word from him, whose name is the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, illustrious in the world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near (unto Allah). Surah 3:45 Pickthall

And yet to believe that Jesus is the Messiah is to also believe that Jesus is the prophesied King from the line of David. To reject one is to reject the other since you can’t have one without the other.

Osama can’t have it both ways; he can’t simply embrace Jesus as the Messiah but deny Jesus as the Davidic King. He either agrees with Jews for Judaism and therefore views Jesus as a false Messiah, thereby discrediting not just the New Testament but both Muhammad and the Quran as well. Or, he agrees with the Quran that Jesus is the Messiah, thereby agreeing with the biblical teaching that Jesus, as the Messiah, is the righteous Branch of David who is Yahweh God in the flesh!

And yet by believing in Jesus’ Messiahship, Osama is now forced to reject Muhammad and his Quran since Muhammad denied both the Messiah Jesus’ Deity and royal status!

The issue of Jesus’ genealogy, and whether he qualifies to be the Messiah, are already addressed quite thoroughly in the following articles:

http://answering-islam.org/Shamoun/davids_seed.htm
http://www.christian-thinktank.com/fabprof4.html
http://www.tektonics.org/gk/jesgen.html
http://www.tektonics.org/uz/whojsdad.html

So we will try to be brief here. The Gospels of Matthew and Luke both include Jesus’ genealogy (Cf. Matthew 1:1-17; Luke 3:23-38). The overall emphasis on Mary in the beginning chapters of Luke leads us to conclude that the author is tracing Jesus’ genealogy through his mother’s line. Since Mary is Jesus’ actual biological mother, then Jesus is truly a biological descendant of David. Yet Luke traces Jesus’ lineage to David through his son Nathan, not Solomon.

From the internal evidence in Matthew it seems safe to conclude that Matthew is giving us Joseph’s lineage, a lineage which does trace back to Solomon:

"and Jesse the father of David the king. And David was the father of Solomon by the wife of Uri'ah ... and Jacob the father of Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom Jesus was born, who is called Christ. Matthew 1:6, 16

But the problem here is that even though Joseph is from the line of Solomon, he is not Jesus’ biological father, and Jesus is therefore not a biological descendant of Solomon. Thus, Osama’s point doesn’t only undermine Christian beliefs, but also his beliefs as a Muslim. Good job Osama!

In reality though, the problem is resolved when we realize that Joseph became Jesus’ legal father, conferring upon Christ the legal status of an heir:

"When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took his wife, but knew her not until she had borne a son; and HE called his name Jesus." Matthew 1:24-25

Joseph naming the child was significant in showing that the former had taken Jesus to be his son, albeit adoptively. As Messianic Jewish scholar Dr. David H. Stern notes:

Yosef’s behavior shows that he accepted Yeshua as his son. According to the Mishna, "If one say, ‘This is my son,’ he is to be believed" (Bava Batra 8:6). The Gemara explains that he is believed "as regards the right of inheritance" (Bava Batra 134a). Thus Yeshua, as a legally acknowledged son, is entitled to inherit the throne of King David from Yosef, a descendant of David (v. 8). (This point is made in Philip Goble, How to Point to Yeshua in Your Rabbi’s Bible, New York: Artists for Israel, 1986.) (Stern, Jewish New Testament Commentary [Clarksville, Maryland; Jewish New Testament Publications, 1996], p. 8)

Thus, Jesus, according to the Holy Scriptures, is an actual biological descendant of David from his mother’s side and a legal descendant of Solomon through his legal father’s side. This is perhaps the reason why the NT writers could apply OT passages regarding God’s promises about Solomon to the Lord Jesus:

"I will be his father, and he shall be my son. When he commits iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, with the stripes of the sons of men;" 2 Samuel 7:14

And:

"He reflects the glory of God and bears the very stamp of his nature, upholding the universe by his word of power. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has obtained is more excellent than theirs. For to what angel did God ever say, ‘Thou art my Son, today I have begotten thee’? Or again, ‘I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son’? Hebrews 1:3-5

Therefore, Osama’s attack on the OT testimony for the Deity of the Messiah due to Jesus not being from the line of Solomon completely vanishes into thin air. It is nothing more than a smokescreen that fails to undermine the fact that the Hebrew Scriptures do point to the Messiah as the visible manifestation of Yahweh God Almighty.


3. Osama’s Challenge Addressed and Refuted - The Bible does call Jesus Yahweh.

Osama concludes:

The challenge still stands Shamoun, WHERE in the Bible was Jesus ever called "Yahweh"???!!!

After Mr. Shamoun had been miserably defeated above, my question and challenge still stand to his polytheist trinity lie and paganism:

WHERE in the Bible was Jesus EVER called "Yahweh"?

The rest of the verses that Shamoun used to prove his trinity LIE will be SOUNDLY DEBUNKED like the above ones shortly, insha'Allah (if Allah Almighty is Willing).

RESPONSE:

By referring to the Bible, Osama has indirectly expanded his initial request to show him a passage from the Hebrew Bible where the Lord Jesus is called Yahweh. The term Bible, without any qualification, refers to both the OT canon and the NT scriptures. Therefore, since Osama asks us to show him from the Bible, meaning both the Old and New Testaments, we are only too glad to oblige by meeting the challenge.

First example:

"But of THE SON he says ... And, ‘Thou, Lord, didst found the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of thy hands; they will perish, but thou remainest; they will all grow old like a garment, like a mantle thou wilt roll them up, and they will be changed. But thou art the same, and thy years will never end.’" Hebrews 1:8a, 10-12

"‘O my God,’ I say, ‘take me not hence in the midst of my days, thou whose years endure throughout all generations!’ Of old thou didst lay the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of thy hands. They will perish, but thou dost endure; they will all wear out like a garment. Thou changest them like raiment, and they pass away; but thou art the same, and thy years have no end.’" Psalm 102:24-27

Note that Hebrews applies the preceding Psalm regarding Yahweh’s role as Creator to the Lord Jesus!

Second example:

"because, if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved. The scripture says, ‘No one who believes in him will be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and bestows his riches upon all who call upon him. For, ‘every one who calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.’" Romans 10:9-13

"And it shall come to pass that all who call upon the name of the LORD shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be those who escape, as the LORD has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom the LORD calls." Joel 2:32

Third example:

"And Jesus entered the temple of God and drove out all who sold and bought in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money-changers and the seats of those who sold pigeons. He said to them, ‘It is written, "My house shall be called a house of prayer"; but you make it a den of robbers.’ And the blind and the lame came to him in the temple, and he healed them. But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying out in the temple, ‘Hosanna to the Son of David!’ they were indignant; and they said to him, ‘Do you hear what these are saying?’ And Jesus said to them, ‘Yes; have you never read, "Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast brought perfect praise"?’ And leaving them, he went out of the city to Bethany and lodged there." Matthew 21:12-17

"O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is thy name in all the earth! Thou whose glory above the heavens is chanted by the mouth of babes and infants, thou hast founded a bulwark because of thy foes, to still the enemy and the avenger." Psalm 8:1-2

Fourth Example:

"for you have tasted the kindness of the Lord. Come to him, to that living stone, rejected by men but in God's sight chosen and precious;" 1 Peter 2:3-4

"O taste and see that the LORD is good! Happy is the man who takes refuge in him!" Psalm 34:8

The preceding passages all apply OT citations regarding Yahweh to the Lord Jesus, affirming that as far as the NT authors are concerned the Lord Jesus was Yahweh God incarnate!

For more examples like these please read the paper Jesus is Yahweh: Examining the NT Use of OT Passages to Demonstrate the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ.

In light of the foregoing, the readers will hopefully see that Osama hasn’t been able to refute our exegesis of Jeremiah 23:5-6. We feel that we have given sufficient data to show that Osama’s challenge has been met and answered. Jeremiah the prophet calls the coming Messianic King Yahweh God, the very divine One in whom we receive redemption and justification.

For more on Jeremaih 23:5-6, we highly recommend this article: http://www.studytoanswer.net/judaism/jahtsidqenu.html.


Acknowledgements

We would like to thank Dr. Michael L. Brown’s helpful insights regarding theophoric names, names that contain elements of God’s names. We highly recommend his multi-volume work refuting Jewish ‘anti-missionary’ responses to the deity and Messiahship of the Lord Jesus:

Answering Jewish Objections To Jesus

Volume 1 - General and Historical Objections
Volume 2 - Theological Objections
Volume 3 - Messianic Prophecy Objections

These books can be ordered from Dr. Brown’s website, www.icnministries.org.


APPENDIX A

God’s Covenant name and Jerusalem

Another passage often used by anti-Trinitarians to deny that Jeremiah is calling the Messiah Yahweh God actually comes from the very book of Jeremiah:

"In those days and at that time I will cause a righteous Branch of David to spring forth; and He shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth. In those days Judah will be saved and Jerusalem will dwell in safety; and this is {the name} by which SHE will be called: the LORD is our righteousness." Jeremiah 33:15-16 NASB

The preceding citation specifically calls Jerusalem/Judah Yahweh Our Righteousness, the very same exact title given to the Messiah in 23:5-6. The anti-Trinitarians try to reason from this that Jeremiah 23:5-6 no more proves that the Messiah is actually Yahweh God than 33:15-16 proves that Jerusalem is Yahweh God also.

In the first place, the reason why Jerusalem is called by the name of the Lord is precisely because God lives there:

"At that time they will call Jerusalem ‘The Throne of the LORD,’ and all the nations will be gathered to it, to Jerusalem, for the name of the LORD; nor will they walk anymore after the stubbornness of their evil heart." Jeremiah 3:17 NASB

God’s throne and name is in Jerusalem. It is not a coincidence that the Messiah sits on the throne forever and embodies the name of Yahweh! More on this later.

"Hark, the cry of the daughter of my people from the length and breadth of the land: ‘Is the LORD not in Zion? Is her King not in her? Why have they provoked me to anger with their graven images, and with their foreign idols?’" Jeremiah 8:19

"Why shouldst thou be like a man confused, like a mighty man who cannot save? Yet thou, O LORD, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name; leave us not." Jeremiah 14:9

"The circumference of the city shall be eighteen thousand cubits. And the name of the city henceforth shall be, The LORD is there." Ezekiel 48:35

"But Judah shall be inhabited for ever, and Jerusalem to all generations. I will avenge their blood, and I will not clear the guilty, for the LORD dwells in Zion." Joel 3:20-21

Jerusalem is named after its eternal King, being the place where Israel’s God chose to dwell, a not uncommon practice. For example, Jerusalem is also called "the City of David" since David made it the capital of his kingdom.

Yet God didn’t just dwell in Zion spiritually, since God dwells in every place in Spirit seeing that he is an omnipresent Being:

"Am I a God at hand, says the LORD, and not a God afar off? Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? says the LORD. Do I not fill heaven and earth? says the LORD." Jeremiah 23:23-24

But rather Jerusalem became the place where God manifested his glory visibly for all to see:

"And when the priests came out of the holy place, a cloud filled the house of the LORD, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud; for the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD." 1 Kings 8:10-11

In fact, the prophets envisioned a time when God would come and dwell with his people visibly:

"A voice cries: ‘In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.’" Isaiah 40:3-5

"And behold, the angel who talked with me came forward, and another angel came forward to meet him, and said to him, ‘Run, say to that young man, "Jerusalem shall be inhabited as villages without walls, because of the multitude of men and cattle in it. For I will be to her a wall of fire round about, says the LORD, and I will be the glory within her." Ho! ho! Flee from the land of the north, says the LORD; for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heavens, says the LORD. Ho! Escape to Zion, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon. For thus said the LORD of hosts, after his glory sent me to the nations who plundered you, for he who touches you touches the apple of his eye: Behold, I will shake my hand over them, and they shall become plunder for those who served them. Then you will know that the LORD of hosts has sent me. Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion; for lo, I come AND I WILL DWELL IN THE MIDST OF YOU, says the LORD. And many nations shall join themselves to the LORD in that day, and shall be my people; AND I WILL DWELL IN THE MIDST OF YOU, and you shall know that the LORD of hosts has sent me to you. And the LORD will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land, and will again choose Jerusalem. Be silent, all flesh, before the LORD; for he has roused himself from his holy dwelling." Zechariah 2:3-13 [1]

This is where the Messiah comes in. The Messiah is the incarnation of Yahweh God and his coming heralds the visible appearance of the God of Israel to the nations. For instance, the prophet Zechariah sees the God of Israel coming to fight against Israel’s enemies:

"Behold, a day of the LORD is coming, when the spoil taken from you will be divided in the midst of you. For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken and the houses plundered and the women ravished; half of the city shall go into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then the LORD will go forth and fight against those nations as when he fights on a day of battle. On that day HIS FEET SHALL STAND ON THE MOUNT OF OLIVES which lies before Jerusalem on the east; and the Mount of Olives shall be split in two from east to west by a very wide valley; so that one half of the Mount shall withdraw northward, and the other half southward. And the valley of my mountains shall be stopped up, for the valley of the mountains shall touch the side of it; and you shall flee as you fled from the earthquake in the days of Uzzi'ah king of Judah. Then the LORD your God will come, and all the holy ones with him." Zechariah 14:1-5

Zechariah sees Yahweh descending upon the Mount of Olives with his feet! The only way for Yahweh to have feet is if he is to appear in a visible form of some kind, presumably in a human form. And according to the NT, the One Zechariah saw descending on the Mount with all the holy ones is actually the Lord Jesus Christ in his return from heaven!

"And when he had said this, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, ‘Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.’ Then they returned to Jerusalem FROM THE MOUNT CALLED OLIVET, which is near Jerusalem, a sabbath day's journey away;" Acts 1:9-12

Notice that the angels say that the Lord Jesus will return to the place from which he ascended, that place being the Mount of Olives!

"May your hearts be made strong so that you will be holy and without fault before our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones." 1 Thessalonians 3:13 NCV

Thus, the NT shows that the feet that Zechariah saw in his vision were the very feet of the Lord Christ when he returns in glory. In other words, the Lord Jesus is none other than the human manifestation, the very incarnation, of Yahweh God Almighty!

Zechariah also says that Yahweh will be King in all the earth:

"And the LORD will become king over all the earth; on that day the LORD will be one and his name one."

What makes this rather astonishing is that earlier Zechariah refers to the Messiah as the King who comes to save:

"Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Lo, your king comes to you; triumphant and victorious is he, humble and riding on an ass, on a colt the foal of an ass. I will cut off the chariot from E'phraim and the war horse from Jerusalem; and the battle bow shall be cut off, and he shall command peace to the nations; his dominion shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth." Zechariah 9:9-10

The NT records that the Lord Jesus entered Jerusalem riding on a colt in fulfillment of Zechariah:

"So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, crying, ‘Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!’ And Jesus found a young ass and sat upon it; as it is written, ‘Fear not, daughter of Zion; behold, your king is coming, sitting on an ass's colt!’" John 12:13-15

Note the connection between Yahweh and the Messianic king. According to Zechariah it is Yahweh who will rule over all the earth as king, while at the same time the Messiah will reign as King over all the nations. When these two facts are put together then the obvious conclusion is that the Messiah is in fact Yahweh God coming to rule over all creation. The Messiah is the manifestation, an extension, of Yahweh’s own personal presence amongst the people. Thus, this is another time where an inspired prophet equates the Messianic King with Yahweh God!

Now, in the light of the foregoing data we can conclude that the reason why Jerusalem is called Yahweh our Righteousness is because it will be the very place where Yahweh God manifests himself visibly for all its inhabitants to see, displaying his perfect righteousness. And since the Messiah is Yahweh Our Righteousness who comes to rule righteously in Jerusalem, he is that very visible manifestation of Yahweh God that all the peoples will look upon!


Notes

[1] Interestingly, this passage from Zechariah 2 demonstrates that Yahweh God is a multi-personal Being. Here, again, is the passage, this time from the NASB translation:

"For thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘After glory HE has sent ME against the nations which plunder you, for he who touches you, touches the apple of HIS eye. For behold, I will wave MY HAND over them so that they will be plunder for their slaves. Then you will know that the LORD of hosts HAS SENT ME. Sing for joy and be glad, O daughter of Zion; for behold I AM COMING AND I WILL DWELL IN YOUR MIDST, declares the LORD. Many nations will join themselves to the LORD in that day and will become MY PEOPLE. Then I will dwell in your midst, and you will know that the LORD of hosts HAS SENT ME TO YOU.’" 2:8-11

Yahweh says that he is coming to dwell in the midst of his people and that they will know that Yahweh has sent him! So here we have Yahweh sending Yahweh!


APPENDIX B

The Identity of the Davidic Branch in Rabbinic Judaism

We conclude with a sampling of quotations from some of the official rabbinic Jewish sources regarding the identity of the Branch. We do this to show that Christians are not the only ones to view these OT passages Messianicly, genuine prophecies of the Messiah, but that certain Jews also saw them in the same way. This will undermine any accusation that the NT authors, and Christians in general, read into the OT a Messianic understanding not intended by the authors of those books.

All the quotations are taken from William Webster's masterful work, Behold Your King: Prophetic Proofs That Jesus Is the Messiah, Christian Resources, June 2003. We are specifically quoting from Appendix C: The Messianic Prophecies of the Old Testament from the Authoritative Jewish Writings, pp. 151-312.

Webster’s book can be purchased here. All bold, underlined and capital emphasis ours.

Targum Jonathan

... Behold the days are coming,’ says the Lord, ‘when I will raise up for David a righteous Messiah, and he shall reign as king, and prosper, and shall enact a righteous and Meritorious law in the land. In his days they of the house of Judah shall be delivered, and Israel shall live in security. And this is the name which they call him: "May vindication be accomplished for us by the Lord in his day."’ (The Messiah: An Aramaic Interpretation, Samson H. Levy (New York: Hebrew Union College, 1974), pp. 68-69)

Targum Jonathan

Say unto him: Thus says the Lord of Hosts saying: ‘Be hold the man whose name is "The Messiah." He is destined to be revealed and to be anointed, and he shall build the Temple of the Lord. He shall build the Temple of the Lord, and he will bear the radiance, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and there shall be a high priest on his throne, and there be a counsel of peace between the two of them.’ (Ibid., p. 99)

The Babylonian Talmud, Baba Bathra 75b

R. Samuel b. Nahmani said in the name of R. Johanan: Three WERE CALLED BY THE NAME OF THE holy One, blessed be He, and they are the following: The righteous, the Messiah and Jerusalem. [This may be inferred as regards] the righteous [from] what ha just been said. [As regards] the Messiah - it is written: And this is the name whereby he shall be called, The Lord is our righteousness (Jer. XXIII, 6) (The Babylonian Talmud, Rabbi Dr. I. Epstein, Editor (London: Soncino Press), Seder Nezekin, Vol. II, Baba Bathra 75b, p. 303)

The Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 98a

R. Alexandri said: R. Joshua b. Levi pointed out a contradiction. It is, in its time [the Messiah], whilst it is also written I [the Lord] will hasten it!–If they are worthy, I will hasten it: if not, [he will come] at due time. R. Alexandri said: R. Joshua opposed two verses: it is written, And behold, one like the son of man came with the clouds of heaven (Dan. VII, 13); whilst [elsewhere] it is written, [behold thy king cometh…] lowly, and riding upon an ass!’ (Zech. IX, 7) - If they are meritorious, [he will come] with the clouds of heaven (Dan. VII, 13); if not, lowly and riding upon an ass (Zech. IX, 9). King Shapur said to Samuel, ‘Ye maintain that the Messiah will come upon an ass: I will rather send him a white horse of mine.’ He replied, ‘Have you a hundred-hued steed?’ (Ibid., Seder Nezekin, Vol. III, Sanhedrin 98a, pp. 663-664)

R. Hillel said: There shall be no Messiah for Israel, because they have already enjoyed him in the days of Hezekiah. R. Joseph said: May God forgive him [for saying so]. Now, when did Hezekiah flourish? During the first Temple. Yet Zechariah, prophesying in the days of the second, proclaimed, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem; behold, thy king cometh unto thee! He is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass (Zech. IX, 9) (Ibid., p. 669)

Midrash Rabbah, Lamentations

BECAUSE THE COMFORTER IS FAR FROM ME, EVEN HE THAT SHOULD REFRESH MY SOUL. What is the name of King Messiah? R. Abba b. Kahana said: His name is ‘the Lord’; as it is stated, And this is the name whereby he shall be called, The Lord is our righteousness (Jer. XXIII, 6). For R. Levi said: It is good for a province when its name is identical with that of its king, and the name of its king identical with that of its God. ‘It is good for a province when its name is identical with that of its king,’ as it is written, And the name of the city from that day shall be the Lord is there (Ezek. XLVIII, 35). ‘And the name of its king is identical with that of its God’ as it is stated, And this is the name whereby he shall be called, The Lord is our righteousness: R. Joshua b. Levi said: His name is ‘Shoot’, as it is stated, Behold, a man whose name is Shoot, and who shall shoot up out of his place, and build the temple of the Lord (Zech. VI, 12). R. Judan said in the name of R. Aibu: His name is ‘Comforter’, as it is said, THE COMFORTER IS FAR FROM ME. R. Hanina said: They do not really differ, because the numerical value of the names is the same, so that ‘Comforter’ is identical with ‘Shoot’ (Midrash Rabbah, Lamentations (London: Soncino Press), I.16, 51, pp. 135-136)

Midrash on Psalms, Psalm 2:2

God will call the king Messiah after His own name, for it is said of the king Messiah This is his name whereby he shall be called: The Lord our righteousness (Jer. 23:6). (The Midrash on Psalms, William G. Braude, Translator (New Haven: Yale, 959), Yale Judaica Series, Volume XIII, Leon Nemoy, Editor, Book One, Psalm 2.2)


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