ISRAEL’S MULTI-PERSONAL GOD

The Hebrew Bible proclaims that Jehovah is the only Elohim (“God”) who reigns from heaven forever, and the only Adonay (“Lord”) that a believer has and trusts in:

“Thus saith thy Lord (Adonayik) Jehovah, and thy God (Elohayik) that pleadeth the cause of his people, Behold, I have taken out of thy hand the cup of staggering, even the bowl of the cup of my wrath; thou shalt no more drink it again:” Isaiah 51:22

“Lift up your heads, O ye gates; And be ye lifted up, ye everlasting doors: And the King of glory will come in. Who is the King of glory? Jehovah strong and mighty (Gibbor), Jehovah mighty (Gibbor) in battle. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; Yea, lift them up, ye everlasting doors: And the King of glory will come in. Who is this King of glory? Jehovah of hosts, He is the King of glory. Selah” Psalm 24:7-10

“Jehovah reigneth; he is clothed with majesty; Jehovah is clothed with strength; he hath girded himself therewith: The world also is established, that it cannot be moved. Thy throne is established of old: Thou art from everlasting.” Psalm 93:1-2  

“Thou, O Jehovah, abidest for ever; Thy throne is from generation to generation.” Lamentations 5:19

He that sitteth in the heavens will laugh: The Lord will have them in derision.” Psalm 2:4

“Jehovah is in his holy temple; Jehovah, his throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” Psalm 11:4

“Jehovah hath established his throne in the heavens; And his kingdom ruleth over all.” Psalm 103:19

“Who is like unto Jehovah our God, That hath his seat on high,” Psalm 113:5 in all

The heavens are the heavens of Jehovah; But the earth hath he given to the children of men.” Psalm 115:16

The inspired Hebrews prophets also testified that there is no other Mighty God besides Jehovah, being the only God whom all nations must serve and worship:

“And it shall come to pass in that day, that the remnant of Israel, and they that are escaped of the house of Jacob, shall no more again lean upon him that smote them, but shall lean upon Jehovah, the Holy One of Israel, in truth. A remnant shall return, even the remnant of Jacob, unto the mighty God (El Gibbor).” Isaiah 10:20-21

“All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn unto Jehovah; And all the kindreds of the nations shall worship before thee (yishtachawu). For the kingdom is Jehovah’s; And he is the ruler over the nations. All the fat ones of the earth shall eat and worship (yishtachawwu): All they that go down to the dust shall bow before him, Even he that cannot keep his soul alive. A seed shall serve him (ya’abdennu); It shall be told of the Lord unto the next generation. They shall come and shall declare his righteousness Unto a people that shall be born, that he hath done it. Psalm 22:27-31

“All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee (yishtachawu), O Lord; And they shall glorify thy name. For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: Thou art God (Elohim) alone.” Psalm 86:9-10

And yet the God-breathed Scriptures of the Jews further identify another divine Person who reigns alongside of Jehovah in heaven,

“Jehovah saith unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, Until I make thine enemies thy footstool.” Psalm 110:1

Who is the Adonay1that the nations are required to serve and worship, since he is the eternally reigning Elohim,

“Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O mighty one (Gibbor), Thy glory and thy majesty. And in thy majesty ride on prosperously, Because of truth and meekness and righteousness: And thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things. Thine arrows are sharp; The peoples fall under thee; They are in the heart of the king’s enemies. Thy throne, O God (Elohim), is for ever and ever: A sceptre of equity is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated wickedness: Therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee With the oil of gladness above thy fellows… So will the king desire thy beauty; For he is thy lord (Adonayik); and reverence thou him (hishtichawi)… I will make thy name to be remembered in all generations: Therefore shall the peoples give thee thanks for ever and ever.” Psalm 45:3-7, 11, 17

“Give the king thy judgments, O God, And thy righteousness unto the king’s son… He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, And from the River unto the ends of the earth. They that dwell in the wilderness shall bow before him; And his enemies shall lick the dust. The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall render tribute: The kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts. Yea, all kings shall fall down before him (yishtichawu); All nations shall serve him (ya’abduhu)… His name shall endure for ever; His name shall be continued as long as the sun: And men shall be blessed in him; All nations shall call him happy.” Psalm 72:1, 8-11, 17 ASV

And the Mighty God who steps out of eternity to enter into his creation in order to humble himself to be born as a human child in order to inherit David’s throne forever. The Holy Spirit filled seers announced that this male Child will come out of Bethlehem and shine forth from Galilee of the Gentiles:

“But there shall be no gloom to her that was in anguish. In the former time he brought into contempt the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali; but in the latter time hath he made it glorious, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the nations. The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined… For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God (El Gibbor), Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to establish it, and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of Jehovah of hosts will perform this.” Isaiah 9:1-2, 6-7 ASV

“Now shalt thou gather thyself in troops, O daughter of troops: he hath laid siege against us; they shall smite the judge of Israel with a rod upon the cheek. But thou, Beth-lehem Ephrathah, which art little to be among the thousands of Judah, out of thee shall one come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth are from of old, FROM EVERLASTING.Therefore will he give them up, until the time that she who travaileth hath brought forth: then the residue of his brethren shall return unto the children of Israel.And he shall stand, and shall feed his flock in the strength of Jehovah, in the majesty of the name of Jehovah his God: and they shall abide; for now shall he be great unto the ends of the earth.” Micah 5:1-4 ASV

And according to the NT writings, this eternal Being who chose to become human is none other than the Lord Jesus Christ!

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem, saying, ‘Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.’ When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And gathering together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born. They said to him, ‘In Bethlehem of Judea; for this is what has been written by the prophet: “And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah, Are by no means least among the leaders of Judah; For from you will come forth a Ruler Who will shepherd My people Israel.”’ Then Herod secretly called for the magi and determined from them the exact time the star appeared.And he sent them to Bethlehem and said, ‘Go and search carefully for the Child; and when you have found Him, report to me, so that I too may come and worship Him.’After hearing the king, they went on their way; and behold, the star, which they had seen in the east, went on ahead of them until it came to a stop over the place where the Child was to be found. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.And after they came into the house, they saw the Child with His mother Mary; and they fell down and worshiped Him. Then they opened their treasures and presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.” Matthew 2:1-11 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

“Now when Jesus heard that John had been taken into custody, He withdrew into Galilee;and leaving Nazareth, He came and settled in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali.This happened so that what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet would be fulfilled: ‘The land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, By the way of the sea, on the other side of the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles—The people who were sitting in darkness saw a great Light, And those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, Upon them a Light dawned.’ From that time Jesus began to preach and say, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’” Matthew 4:12-17

“Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming in, he said to her, ‘Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.’But she was very perplexed at this statement, and was pondering what kind of greeting this was. And the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and give birth to a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.’But Mary said to the angel, ‘How will this be, since I am a virgin?’ The angel answered and said to her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; for that reason also the holy Child will be called the Son of God.’” Luke 1:26-35 NASB

“Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And all the people were on their way to register for the census, each to his own city. Now Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, in order to register along with Mary, who was betrothed to him, and was pregnant. While they were there, the time came for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2:1-7 NASB

“God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways,in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom He also made the world.And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,having become so much better than the angels, to the extent that He has inherited a more excellent name than they. For to which of the angels did He ever say, ‘You are My Son, Today I have fathered You’? And again, ‘I will be a Father to Him And He will be a Son to Me’? And when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says, ‘And let all the angels of God worship Him.’ And regarding the angels He says, ‘He makes His angels winds, And His ministers a flame of fire.’ But regarding the Son He says, ‘Your throne, God, is forever and ever, And the scepter of righteousness is the scepter of His kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of joy above Your companions.’ And, ‘You, Lord [the son], in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, And the heavens are the works of Your hands; They will perish, but You remain; And they all will wear out like a garment, And like a robe You will roll them up; Like a garment they will also be changed. But You are the same, And Your years will not come to an end.’ But to which of the angels has He ever said, ‘Sit at My right hand, Until I make Your enemies A footstool for Your feet’?” Hebrews 1:1-13 NASB

Thus, in perfect harmony with the Christian NT documents the Hebrew Bible bears witness that the one true Lord God of all creation is a multi-Personal Being, and that one of those divine Persons shall become the human Messiah, whom both Christians and Muslims agree is none other than Jesus of Nazareth!

FURTHER READING

JEHOVAH GOD: OUR PLURAL CREATOR AND SUSTAINER

Rabbinic Judaism and the Plurality of God

ENDNOTES

1 It is of interest to note that the word Adonayik is only used twice, once in Isaiah 51:22 for Jehovah and the other time in Psalm 45:11 in reference to the Messianic Ruler.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s