Muslims deny that the NT writings, specifically the four canonical Gospels, contain any explicit statements from the Lord Jesus testifying to his essential Deity. As such, I am going to be looking at some of the titles, function and characteristics which the Quran and some of the other primary sources of Islam ascribe to God and compare them with the words of the Lord Jesus, in order to show that the things Jesus said and did can only be said and done by the only true God. This in turn will refute the assertion that Jesus never made any explicit claims to being God Almighty in the flesh.
The Quran, teaches that Allah is he who gives life and causes death, and is also the Heir of all things:
And certainly We! We it is Who give life, and cause death and We are the Inheritors. S. 15:23 Hilali-Khan
Verily! We will inherit the earth and whatsoever is thereon. And to Us they all shall be returned, S. 19:40 Hilali-Khan
The One Who Makes Alive and Puts to Death
And yet the Lord Jesus says that he is the One who gives life and raises the dead:
“For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom He will… Truly, truly I say to you, the hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear THE VOICE OF THE SON OF GOD, and those who hear will live… Do not marvel at this. For the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear HIS [the Son’s] VOICE and come out—those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.” John 5:21, 25, 28-29
“Jesus said to her, ‘Your brother will rise again.’ Martha said to Him, ‘I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.’ Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, yet shall he live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?’ She said to Him, ‘Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.’” John 11:23-27
“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.’” John 14:6
He even goes as far as to claim to possess the ability to give eternal life to all the believers, being able to preserve them by his power for all eternity:
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. I give them eternal life. They shall never perish, nor shall anyone snatch them from My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all. No one is able to snatch them from My Father’s hand. My Father and I are one.” John 10:27-30
“When Jesus spoke these words, He lifted His eyes toward heaven and said: ‘Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son may also glorify You. As You have given Him authority over all flesh, He will give eternal life to all whom You have given Him.’” John 17:1-2
What makes Jesus’ words all the more astonishing is that, not only does he claim to be the Truth and the Life, he also says that he shall be the One who will personally resurrect the dead from their graves at the last hour, i.e. the day of judgment, by the power of his glorious and majestic voice!
This isn’t the only time that Christ said that he shall be the One to raise the dead at the last day:
“This is the will of the Father who has sent Me, that of all whom He has given Me, I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. This is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day… No one can come to Me unless the Father who has sent Me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day.” John 6:39-40, 44
And yet the Quran says that it is Allah who is the truth and who will raise the dead from their graves at the last hour!
That is because Allah, He is the Truth, and it is He Who gives life to the dead, and it is He Who is Able to do all things. And surely, the Hour is coming, there is no doubt about it, and certainly, Allah will resurrect those who are in the graves. S. 22:6-7 Hilali-Khan
The risen Lord also claims to be the One who has authority over death and the spirit realm,
“When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as though I were dead. Then He laid His right hand on me, saying to me, ‘Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am He who lives, though I was dead. Look! I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death.” Revelation 1:17-18
Which is why he has the power to strike people dead at any time:
“To the angel of the church in Thyatira write: The Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and whose feet are like fine brass, says these things: I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience, and that your last works are more than the first. But I have a few things against you: You permit that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat food sacrificed to idols. I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, but she did not repent. Look! I will throw her onto a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. I will put her children to death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the hearts and minds. I will give to each one of you according to your deeds.” Revelation 2:18-23
The risen Lord again astounds the minds by attributing to himself the title “the First and the Last”, which both the Hebrew Bible and the Quran agree is a divine name belonging only to God!
“Thus says the Lord the King of Israel, and his Redeemer the Lord of Hosts: I am the first, and I am the last; besides Me there is no God.” Isaiah 44:6 – cf. 41:4; 48:12
He is the First (nothing is before Him) and the Last (nothing is after Him), the Most High (nothing is above Him) and the Most Near (nothing is nearer than Him). And He is the All-Knower of every thing. S. 57:3 Hilali-Khan
Moreover, Jesus’ claiming to know the hearts and minds of everyone, and being able to repay each one according to what thy have earned, is another divine function which the Old Testament and the Quran ascribe to God Almighty alone:
“I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give to every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his deeds.” Jeremiah 17:10 – cf. 11:20; 29:23
He knows what is in the heavens and on earth; and He knows what ye conceal and what ye reveal: yea, God knows well the (secrets) of (all) hearts. S. 64:4 Yusuf Ali
The Divine Heir of all things
That’s not all. Jesus also describes himself as the Heir, being the beloved Son of God who owns everything that his Father possesses:
“Having yet his one well-beloved son, he sent him last to them, saying, ‘They will revere my son.’ But those vinedressers said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’ So they took him and killed him and threw him out of the vineyard.” Mark 12:6-8
“At that time Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said, ‘I thank You, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and revealed them to infants. Yes, Father, for it was Your good pleasure. All things have been handed over to Me by My Father. And no one knows who the Son is but the Father, and who the Father is but the Son and he to whom the Son desires to reveal Him.’” Luke 10:21-22
“He will glorify Me, for He will receive from Me and will declare it to you. All that the Father has is Mine. Therefore I said that He will take what is Mine and will declare it to you.” John 16:14-15
“All that are Mine are Yours, and all that are Yours are Mine. And I am glorified in them.” John 17:10
Since God owns the entire creation, this means that every created thing in existence belongs to Christ, which includes all the Muslim nations, even Muhammad himself!
With the foregoing in perspective, could Jesus have been any clearer in expressing his absolute, essential Deity? And could any prophet say the things that Jesus said and still be considered a true prophet of God if s/he were nothing other than a mere human being? The answers are too obvious for those who have eyes to see and ears to hear.
Please proceed to the second part of our discussion where we provide additional evidence for Jesus claiming to be God https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2017/02/15/islamic-theology-confirms-that-jesus-claimed-to-be-god-pt-2/.
All Scriptural citations taken from the Modern English Version (MEV) of the Holy Bible.