(Col. 2: 8,9) "Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily."

One of the great arguments of antichrist, without debate, is that the Lord Jesus Christ was only a man. This long-standing tradition supported by philosophers and scientists of every age is simply a matter of self-serving deception—in order to reign supreme one must destroy the king.

Still, before we let our minds run to the atheist and evolutionist, let us remember that during the Lord's public work it was the most respected, well-studied religionists—the Pharisees, the scribes and the elders—who denied Christ to be the Son of God. For sure, the Lord of glory did come in the likeness of sinful flesh. The righteousness he earned and the wrath of God he endured he did so as a man on behalf of many. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. (Heb 2: 17) Still, the Pharisees insisted that He was only a man.

For example, on one occasion a man sick of the palsy was brought to the Lord. The Lord spoke, Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee. Knowing that only God could forgive a man of his sins, the scribes said within themselves, This MAN blasphemeth. They said of Christ: behold, A MAN, gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. At another time, as the Pharisees stood ready to stone Him to death, the Lord asked, Many good works have I showed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me? The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not: but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being A MAN, makest thyself God. Though this reaction is expected from those who deny the existence of God, be certain, even in this day and time, some individuals claiming to believe and honor Jehovah do deny that Christ was actually God providing HIMSELF a sacrifice.

Is it not the very glory of God that is at stake! Consider the following. Isaac's life was spared when Abraham was about to sacrifice him because GOD WILL PROVIDE HIMSELF A LAMB FOR A BURNT OFFERING. Christ Jesus is that Lamb—God providing Himself in the person of His only begotten Son. It is Christ, the express image of the Father, of whom the Law and the prophets give witness. In Christ, the fullness of the Godhead bodily, God's righteousness is clearly set forth. Through Christ, the Word made flesh, God is both just and the justifier of those trusting Christ alone. (Gen. 22: 8; Rom. 3: 19-26) So, through the spotless Lamb of God (the risen Christ Jesus), God receives all the glory in the salvation of His people so that no flesh should glory in his presence. (I Cor. 1: 29)

Anything less than God receiving all the glory in salvation is vain deceit—men deny the fullness of Christ because men want a part in the salvation of themselves and others. Men want the glory saying, I searched out knowledge of God, I made a willful decision to believe, I obeyed the law, I led others to God. The vain deceiver will not admit that it is Christ whom God has given power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as [God] hast given him. (John 17:2) Be certain of Jonah's words, They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy. But I will sacrifice unto [you, God,] thanksgiving; I will pay that I have vowed. SALVATION IS OF THE LORD! (Jon 2: 8,9) God has spoken clearly, I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images…for how should my name be polluted? And I will not give my glory to another. (Isaiah 42:8; 48:11) God is more glorified by one renewed sinner's thanksgiving than by all the works of iniquity combined.

Assuredly, the word of God is clear on the matter—the Lord Jesus Christ was God manifest in the flesh:

And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. (I Tim. 3: 16)

God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they…unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom. (Heb. 1: 1-3, 8)

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, Counselor, The mighty God, the everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. (Isaiah 9: 6,7)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made…And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. (John 1: 1-3, 14)

For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgement unto the Son: that all men should honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him. (John 5: 22,23)

So then let the believer mark well the passage with which we began: Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. (Col. 2: 8,9)

Clay Curtis