Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Even More Proof That Jesus Is Absolutely Good
And Therefore Absolutely Divine!

Sam Shamoun

This particular article is meant to go along with this earlier one, by furnishing even more proof that Jesus (and his followers) thought of himself as being absolutely good, and therefore truly divine and co-equal with God the Father in essence.

The Holy Bible is explicitly clear that there is no human being who doesn’t sin:

“If they sin against thee--for there is no man who does not sin--and thou art angry with them, and dost give them to an enemy, so that they are carried away captive to the land of the enemy, far off or near;” 1 Kings 8:46

“Surely there is not a righteous man on earth who does good and never sins.” Ecclesiastes 7:20

The reason this is so is because all human beings are born fallen as a result of the sin of Adam and Eve. As such, every human is born with a sinful nature that taints every aspect of his being, thereby causing him/her to sin and rebel against God:

“The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” Genesis 6:5

“And when the LORD smelled the pleasing odor, the LORD said in his heart, ‘I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I ever again destroy every living creature as I have done.’” Genesis 8:21 – cf. Psalm 51:5; 58:3

“Enter not into judgment with thy servant; for no man living is righteous before thee.” Psalm 143:2

“This is an evil in all that is done under the sun, that one fate comes to all; also the hearts of men are full of evil, and madness is in their hearts while they live, and after that they go to the dead.” Ecclesiastes 9:3

“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately corrupt; who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9

This is why the inspired Scriptures state that no human person can say that his heart is clean, and therefore pure from all sin:

“Who can say, ‘I have made my heart clean; I am pure from my sin’?” Proverbs 20:9

As such, God would be thoroughly justified in destroying the entire human race, even though he chooses to show mercy and grace so that man can live in his infinitely holy and majestic presence:

“If thou, O LORD, shouldst mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand? But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.” Psalm 130:3-4

The Quran itself agrees since it expressly testifies that mankind is sinful and needs to be purified by God:

And if Allah were to seize mankind for their wrong-doing, He would not leave on it (the earth) a single moving (living) creature, but He postpones them for an appointed term and when their term comes, neither can they delay nor can they advance it an hour (or a moment). S. 16:61 Hilali-Khan

And your Lord is Most Forgiving, Owner of Mercy. Were He to call them to account for what they have earned, then surely, He would have hastened their punishment. But they have their appointed time, beyond which they will find no escape. S. 18:58 Hilali-Khan – cf. 35:45

And had it not been for the Grace of Allah and His Mercy on you, (Allah would have hastened the punishment upon you). And that Allah is full of kindness, Most Merciful. O you who believe! Follow not the footsteps of Shaitan (Satan). And whosoever follows the footsteps of Shaitan (Satan), then, verily he commands Al-Fahsha' [i.e. to commit indecency (illegal sexual intercourse, etc.)], and Al-Munkar [disbelief and polytheism (i.e. to do evil and wicked deeds; to speak or to do what is forbidden in Islam, etc.)]. And had it not been for the Grace of Allah and His Mercy on you, not one of you would ever have been pure from sins. But Allah purifies (guides to Islam) whom He wills, and Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower. S. 24:20-21 Hilali-Khan

It even states that Muhammad himself was a sinner who needed to be forgiven:

God forgive you! Why did you give them leave to stay behind before you knew those who spoke the truth from those who invented false excuses? S. 9:43 N. J. Dawood

“… Know that there is no deity but God. Implore Him to forgive your sins and to forgive the true believers, men and women. God knows your busy haunts and resting-places.” S. 47:19 Dawood

We have given you a glorious victory, so that God may forgive you your past and future sins, and perfect His goodness to you; that He may guide you to a straight path and bestow on you His mighty help. S. 48:1-2 Dawood – cf. Q. 4:105-107; 80:1-10; 110:3

The Quran also contains dire warnings to Muhammad where Allah threatens to kill him, and damn him to hell, if he is not careful to watch his steps:

Verily, they were about to tempt you away from that which We have revealed (the Qur'an) unto you (O Muhammad), to fabricate something other than it against Us, and then they would certainly have taken you a friend! And had We not made you stand firm, you would nearly have inclined to them a little. In that case, We would have made you taste a double portion (of punishment) in this life and a double portion (of punishment) after death. And then you would have found none to help you against Us. S. 17:73-75 Hilali-Khan

Had he invented lies concerning Us, We would have seized him by the right hand and severed his heart's vein: not one of you could have protected him! S. 69:44-47 Dawood

The foregoing implies that if Jesus were a mere flesh and blood human being then he would have been born a sinner in need of purification. And if the NT writers thought that Jesus was nothing more than a man then we would find passages in the Holy Bible where Jesus is depicted as recognizing and confessing his own sinfulness. We would also expect to discover statements where Christ’s followers testify that Jesus was a fallible human who also needed the grace of God to be saved just like the rest of mankind.

However, this is not what the inspired Scriptures teach concerning the Lord Jesus. Rather, the Holy Bible emphatically testifies that Christ is absolutely good, being free from all imperfections and sins:

“The one who speaks for himself seeks his own glory. But He who seeks the glory of the One who sent Him is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.” John 7:18 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

Christ makes a rather remarkable assertion since the Holy Bible is clear that Yahweh alone is intrinsically righteous:

“to show that the LORD is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.” Psalm 92:15

For Christ to, therefore, say that there is no unrighteousness in him basically meant that he was making himself out to be God.

Christ went on to say that he always does what pleases the Father and that no one could convict him of any sin:

“And he who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what is pleasing to himWhich of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me?” John 8:29, 46

Even the Father testified to being well pleased and delighted with his beloved Son:

“And when he came up out of the water, immediately he saw the heavens opened and the Spirit descending upon him like a dove; and a voice came from heaven, ‘Thou art my beloved Son; with thee I am well pleased.’” Mark 1:10-11

“Jesus, aware of this, withdrew from there. And many followed him, and he healed them all, 16 and ordered them not to make him known. This was to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah: ‘Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved with whom my soul is well pleased. I will put my Spirit upon him, and he shall proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not wrangle or cry aloud, nor will any one hear his voice in the streets; he will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoldering wick, till he brings justice to victory; and in his name will the Gentiles hope.’ Then a blind and dumb demoniac was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the dumb man spoke and saw.” Matthew 12:15-22

And John himself agrees with his risen Lord and Savior since he goes out of his way to affirm Jesus’ absolute, essential purity:

“Beloved, we are God's children now; it does not yet appear what we shall be, but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. And every one who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure… You know that he appeared to take away sins, and in him there is no sin… Little children, let no one deceive you. He who does right is righteous, as he is righteous.” 1 John 3:2-3, 5, 7

The rest of the NT writers concur since they boldly confess that Christ is perfectly sinless, and therefore completely different from everyone else in that regard:

“For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

“For we have not a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.” Hebrews 4:15

"The former priests were many in number, because they were prevented by death from continuing in office; but he holds his priesthood permanently, because he continues for ever. Consequently he is able for all time to save those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them. For it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, blameless, unstained, separated from sinners, exalted above the heavens. He has no need, like those high priests, to offer sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people; he did this once for all when he offered up himself. Indeed, the law appoints men in their weakness as high priests, but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son who has been made perfect for ever.” Hebrews 7:23-28

“how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify your conscience from dead works to serve the living God.” Hebrews 9:14

The God-breathed Scriptures further bear witness that Jesus is the Holy and Righteous One, and was so from the moment he was miraculously conceived to his bless virgin mother:

“And Mary said to the angel, ‘How shall this be, since I have no husband?’ And the angel said to her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.’” Luke 1:34-35

“But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, and killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses." Acts 3:14-15

“And he said, 'The God of our fathers appointed you to know his will, to see the Just One and to hear a voice from his mouth;” Acts 22:14 – cf. 7:52

The demons themselves confessed to Christ being morally perfect:

“And immediately there was in their synagogue a man with an unclean spirit; and he cried out, ‘What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are, the Holy One of God.’” Mark 1:23-24

Even those who opposed and disbelieved in Jesus knew that he was innocent and hadn’t done anything to deserve death:

“When Judas, his betrayer, saw that he was condemned, he repented and brought back the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, saying, ‘I have sinned in betraying innocent blood.’ They said, ‘What is that to us? See to it yourself.’ And throwing down the pieces of silver in the temple, he departed; and he went and hanged himself.” Matthew 27:3-5

“Besides, while he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent word to him, ‘Have nothing to do with that righteous man, for I have suffered much over him today in a dream.’” Matthew 27:19

“One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, ‘Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!’ But the other rebuked him, saying, ‘Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we indeed justly; for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.’ And he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’ And he said to him, ‘Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.’ It was now about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour, while the sun's light failed; and the curtain of the temple was torn in two. Then Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, ‘Father, into thy hands I commit my spirit!’ And having said this he breathed his last. Now when the centurion saw what had taken place, he praised God, and said, ‘Certainly this man was innocent!’” Luke 23:39-47

With the foregoing in perspective, can there be any doubt that both the Lord Jesus and his followers proclaimed that Christ is absolutely good, and therefore absolutely divine, e.g. that Jesus Christ is truly God in essence who became a perfect human being in order redeem his people from their sins?

“‘she will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.’ All this took place to fulfil what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: ‘Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and his name shall be called Emmanuel" (which means, God with us).’” Matthew 1:21-23 – cf. 28:20

“awaiting our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all iniquity and to purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds. Titus 2:13-14

“See to it that no one makes a prey of you by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the universe, and not according to Christ. For in him the whole fulness of deity dwells bodily, and you have come to fulness of life in him, who is the head of all rule and authority. In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of flesh in the circumcision of Christ; and you were buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. And you, who were dead in trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, having canceled the bond which stood against us with its legal demands; this he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the principalities and powers and made a public example of them, triumphing over them in him.” Colossians 2:8-15

To those who have been given eyes to see and ears to hear, the evidence is abundantly clear that the historical Jesus was no mere human being, but was in fact (and still is, for that matter) the blessed and glorious God-man who reins forever as King of kings and Lord of lords!

“they will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.” Revelation 17:14 – cf. 19:11-16

Amen! Come Lord Jesus, come! We testify that you are the sinless Son of God who reigns in our hearts as King of kings and Lord of lords forever and ever, Amen!

Unless noted otherwise, all Scriptural quotations taken from the Revised Standard Version (RSV) of the Holy Bible.