Our discussion will take the form of a simulated conversation between a Jehovah's Witness named Joe and a Christian named Chris.
Joe: Chris, you told me that this week we would discuss how Jesus could be God while he was here on earth. I believe that Jesus while he was on earth was only a good man.
Chris: Joe, remember that when we are talking about Jesus being God I am not saying that Jesus is the Father. What I am saying is that Jesus has the nature or character or attributes of God. The same attributes that make the Father God, also qualifies Jesus as God.
Joe: Are you saying that Jesus is God because he has the attributes that only God has? I have never seen any attributes of God that belong to Jesus.
Chris: Well, we have already talked about one of the unique attributes that God has and that is omnipresence. No angel can be everywhere at one time. No man can be everywhere at one time. Only God has as his nature the attribute of omnipresence. And remember that Jesus claimed to possess omnipresence by promising to be everywhere that two or three of his disciples are gathered.
Joe: So if Jesus is God and the Father is God then you believe that there are two Gods!
Chris: No. Joe, let me illustrate it to you this way. Look at this bowl of water. Would you say that this bowl of water is three separate entities?
Joe: No of course not. Water is a unit. It is a whole thing.
Chris: Now what if I took some of the water and put it into an ice cube tray to freeze. Then I took some of the water and put it into a steamer to produce steam. Would you say that the ice and the steam and the water are three separate entities?
Joe: No they are not. They would be separate forms but they are the same essence. They are all H2O. They all have the same molecular structure.
Chris: You're right Joe. Although their form is different, their essence or substance is the same. Ice is not the same as steam and water is not the same form as ice yet their essence or genetic makeup is identical. And although ice and steam and water have different forms, they could be put together into a container and they would all become one essence - H20. In the teaching of historic Christianity, the Father could be like the ice, the son like the water and the holy spirit like the steam. All have the very same essence, that is they have the same attributes or characteristics or molecular structure. Yet we see them differently. And Jesus when he became man was like a separate substance, coffee, being added to the hot water. Jesus added a human nature (the coffee) to the H2O (or God essence) that he already had!
Joe: But the Watchtower teaches that while Jesus was on earth he was nothing but a mere man. How can you prove from scripture how Jesus demonstrated that he had God's nature or characteristics while he was here on earth? I only see Jesus as a man.
Chris: Joe, let's first of all have a look at 2 Chronicles 6:30. Can you read that in your New World Translation?
Joe: It says "then may you yourself hear from the heavens, the place of your dwelling, and you must forgive and give to each one according to all his ways, because you know his heart (for you yourself alone well know the heart of the sons of mankind)."
Chris: In this verse we are given another unique characteristic of God. What is it Joe?
Joe: It says that God alone knows the hearts of men. But Satan can read our hearts or minds too, can't he?
Chris: No. Satan only has access to put thoughts into our minds. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that he can read our minds. In fact the verse you just read says without a shadow of a doubt that only God can read the hearts of men. Now if Jesus has God's essence, or character, or nature, then Jesus could also read the hearts of men. Look at Matthew 12:25. What does it say in your Bible?
Joe: It says about Jesus "Knowing their thoughts, he said to them: Every kingdom divided against itself comes to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand." It don't understand this. It says that Jesus knew their thoughts.
Chris: Have a look at another passage in your Bible. Look at Luke 9:47.
Joe: "Jesus, knowing the reasoning of their hearts, took a young child, set it beside him..." It says that Jesus knew the reasoning of their hearts.
Chris: There are a lot of passages where Jesus reads people's thoughts, but have a look at one more that says that Jesus search all hearts. It is found in Revelation 2:23.
Joe: "And her children I will kill with deadly plague, so that all the congregations will know that I am he who searches the kidneys and hearts, and I will give to YOU individually according to YOUR deeds."
Chris: Who is speaking in Revelation 2:23?
Joe: It is Jesus who is speaking, but the trinity can't be true because holy spirit is not a person.
Chris: Let's discuss the holy spirit next week.