The Riches OF GRACE
“hath appeared to all men.” Titus 2:11
Robert W. Reed
Ye are gods
“Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?”
+ Not A Deification of Man +
The words, “ye are gods” spoken by our Lord have been used by many to deify man. Mormons use this verse to support their doctrine that human beings can become gods in resurrection. Some new-agers cite the same verse for their beliefs of the deity of men. Many cult leaders use the same verse to promote their exaltation of man. In recent years, a large number of charismatic leaders make reference to this verse in saying they are little gods (Benny Hinn, Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Hagin, Paul Crouch, and Morris Sevell). Many so-called faith teachers have espoused this “little god” doctrine, but, the Bible nowhere within its pages teaches that mere man can become God nor can he be compared to God in any way. The deification of man is automatically a demotion of God.”
“I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High” Psalm 82:6
This article will focus on the truth spoken by Jesus in John 10:34-35 in comparison with many false teachings of our day. Our Lord had no intentions of deifying man in His statement, “ye are gods” but to prove His claims as Messiah, the Son of God.
The Context Surrounding The Statement
The context in which we find the statement, “ye are gods,” has absolutely nothing to do with the deification of man, but it is a defense of Christ’s deity and the authority of Scripture. The entire chapter presents Jesus Christ as the true Messiah. In John 10:24, He was asked if He was the Christ, and the remaining part of the chapter is a debate concerning His deity, and not the deity of man. In John 10:30-33, the Jews accused Jesus of blasphemy and took up stones to stone Him; because, He made Himself equal with God. These skeptical Jewish leaders understood very well the Old Testament passage that Jesus quoted in verse 34, which was a condemnation of wicked rulers and judges.
The Text From Which The Statement Is Taken
The text Jesus made reference to is in Psalm 82:6, “I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.” Our Lord answered their charge with their own sacred writings. Jesus bears witness to the inspiration and authority of God’s Word when He said in John 10:35, “The Scripture cannot be broken.” He is reminding the Jews that the Word of God cannot be broken, annulled, or destroyed, and every jot and tittle is true and should not be passed over or evaded.
The theme of Psalm 82 is God judging the judges of His people. The gods of Psalm 82 are Hebrew judges, those whom God had put in the place of authority among His people. They are not called gods because they are actually divine beings. These earthly judges were given God’s law, and they are called gods in the sense that they are to represent God in carrying out His will and justice on earth. A judge sits as God’s representative, vested with His authority. They speak for God, giving His judgment in earthly matters. In verse 1 of this chapter, the judges are being judged by God Himself. We can rest assured that God will take the highest vengeance upon those who have been entrusted with the authority of administering justice. The judges find themselves in God’s courtroom, and this chapter is a declaration of their doom. In verses 2-5, their condition is described because they had abused their divinely appointed office. In verses 6-7, we see that even though these princes hold a high office, they are still men and must die (these are dying gods).
Again, the name of God is associated with those who are to act on His behalf and stand in His stead. They are called gods because of their responsibility to represent God. The word god (with a little “g”) is used of Moses before Pharaoh. Judges in Israel were called gods (Exodus 21:6, 22:8-9). Judges and rulers derive their power from God, and they are called gods because they act under His authority. Other Scriptures to consider are Leviticus 19:15, Deuteronomy 1:16-17, and Psalm 138:1.
The Purpose For The Statement
Our Lord says in John 10:34-38, that if the Psalmist by the Spirit of God called certain men gods who were given the word of God and the authority to rule, why did they get upset when He claimed to be the Son of God, set apart and sent from the Father. He even appeals to His works in verse 37-38 to prove that He was sent from God. As has already been stated, Jesus was giving a defense for His own deity, not for the deification of man.
Jim Jones, who led nearly a thousand to their death said, “It is written that ye are gods, I’m a god and you’re a god. And I’m a god, and I’m gonna stay a god until you recognize that you’re a god. And when you recognize that you’re a god I shall go back into principle and will not appear as a personality. But until I see all of you knowing who you are, I’m gonna be very much what I am - God, Almighty God.”
Benny Hinn said, “I am a little messiah walking on earth.”
Paul Crouch said, “I am a little god.”
Kenneth Copeland said, “You don’t have a god in you, you are one.” He also said, “God’s reason for creating Adam was His desire to reproduce Himself . . . He was not a little like God, He was not almost like God. He was not subordinate to God even.”
Kenneth Hagin said, “Man . . . was created on terms of equality with God, and he would stand in God’s presence without any consciousness of inferiority . . . man lived in the realm of God. He lived on terms equal with God.”
Margot Adler a well-known witch said, “We are as gods and might as well get good at it.”
M. Scott Peck, a psychologist popular in both new age and Christianity said, “God wants us to become Himself (or herself or itself). We are growing toward god-hood. God is the goal of evolution.”
Quotes taken from Christianity in Crisis -Hanegraaff
"Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.” Acts 16:31
Victory Baptist Church
Pastor Robert W. Reed
14473 Bellingrath Road
P.O. Box 257
Coden, Alabama 36523