MBS054 THE INCARNATION
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father), full of grace and truth.John 1:14
The term “Incarnation” comes from a Latin word that means “in flesh.” It means that God took on human nature. Because it was God the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity, who became incarnate or in flesh, it is probably more correct and proper to say that it was the Logos or the Word that became flesh, rather than saying that God became a man, though both statements are actually true. The Incarnation means that suddenly there were two natures in one Person. The two natures were always distinct and never mixed within the one Person.
This study of the Incarnation will be divided into seven sections: the doctrine of the Incarnation, the means of the Incarnation, the reasons and purposes of the Incarnation, the character of the Incarnate Messiah, the humanity of the Messiah, the humiliation of the Messiah, and the deity of the Messiah.
I. THE DOCTRINE OF THE INCARNATION
There are five main passages of Scripture that deal with the doctrine of the Incarnation.
A. John 1:1–14
The most extended passage is John 1:1–14. Insofar as the Incarnation is concerned, there are four key elements, all spelled out in verses 1 and 14:
Verse 1 states: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Verse 14 states: And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father), full of grace and truth.
The first key element is that the Word was In the beginning (v. 1a). The second element is that the Word was with God (v. 1b). As long as God was, the Word was. If God is eternal, the Word is eternal. The third element is that the Word was God (v. 1c). How the Word could be with God, which is the second element, and yet be God, which is the third element, is explainable only in terms of the Trinity. The Word was with God and, therefore, distinct from God, because the Word is not the Father nor is the Word the Holy Spirit. But the Word was God in that the Word is the Son. And the fourth element is that the Word became flesh (v. 14). The Word that was in the beginning with God, that was God, at a certain point in human history took on flesh, became man, and that was the Incarnation.
B. Romans 1:3–4
concerning his Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh, who was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead; even Jesus Christ our Lord.
Two key phrases concerning the Incarnation are found in this passage: according to the flesh (v. 3) and according to the spirit of holiness (v. 4). This is the Incarnation. He became man according to the flesh. It was accomplished by the power of the Holy Spirit; therefore, it was according to the Spirit as well.
C. Philippians 2:6–8
who, existing in the form of God, counted not the being on an equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men; and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, becoming obedient even unto death, yea, the death of the cross.
Three key elements concerning the Incarnation are found in this passage. First, this One always existed in the form of God (v. 6); for all eternity past, He existed in the form of God, because He was the Second Person of the Trinity, God the Son. Secondly, He that existed in the form of God for all eternity, at some point in human history, was made into the likeness of men (v. 7). That is the statement of the Incarnation: He was made into the likeness of sinful men. The use of the term likeness does not mean He was not really a man. The term likeness emphasizes the similarity to sinful men in that, by mere observation, He did not look any different than any other human being. Except, in His case, He did not commit a single sin. He was an absolutely real human being, a real man, but not a sinful man. Thirdly, He was found in fashion as a man (v. 8). Again, He looked like all other humans. The Incarnation means that He took on flesh and became man.
D. 1 Timothy 3:16
And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the spirit, Seen of angels, Preached among the nations, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.
The emphasis of this verse is that He was manifested in the flesh; a statement of the Incarnation.
E. Hebrews 2:14
Since then the children are sharers in flesh and blood, he also himself in like manner partook of the same; that through death he might bring to nought him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.
The key phrase in this verse concerning the Incarnation is sharers in flesh and blood. The Greek word for sharers means, “to take hold of.” He took hold of something. What He took hold of was human flesh.
From these five Scriptures that discuss the Incarnation, the doctrine of the Incarnation is derived.
II. THE MEANS OF THE INCARNATION
What, then, is the means of the Incarnation? How did God become a man? The means of the Incarnation involved three things.
First, the Incarnation involved the Holy Spirit (Lk. 1:35). When Mary asked how conception was possible because she was a virgin, the angel answered that the Holy Spirit would overshadow her and bring about a miraculous conception. The Generator of the Incarnation was the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit came upon Mary, and the power of the Most High overshadowed her. The Spirit worked to beget or conceive the humanity of the Messiah. He was always God, so deity did not need to be generated; only His humanity needed to be generated. Deity partook of Mary’s humanity but, at the same time, precluded Mary’s sin nature. By means of the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit with the power of the Most High, the Holy Spirit generated the humanity of Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah. The Holy Spirit generated the conception. The product, according to Luke 1:35, was to be two things: first, holy; and, secondly, the Son of God, the God-Man.
Secondly, the Incarnation involved the Virgin Mary. Her virginity was affirmed by two of the four Gospels (Mat. 1:18, 22–23; Lk. 1:27, 34). The conception was supernatural. Because Mary was a virgin, it was necessary that there be a supernatural conception. People often speak of the miracle of the Virgin Birth, but, technically, it was not the actual birth that was the miracle; Yeshua was born just like any other baby. It was not the birth that was miraculous, but the conception. The female egg was that of Mary, so Jesus was the real son of Mary, but there was a total absence of the male sperm. Therefore, Yeshua did not have a natural father, and that is why the conception required the generating power of the Holy Spirit. On one hand, the Holy Spirit was the means, but on the other hand, the Virgin Mary was a means as well.
Thirdly, the Incarnation involved the Virgin Birth that produced the Incarnate Man. This was predicted in Genesis 3:15 and Isaiah 7:14 and finally came into fulfillment in Matthew 1:16.
III. THE REASONS AND PURPOSES FOR THE INCARNATION
What are the reasons or purposes for the Incarnation? There are twelve specific reasons why the Incarnation occurred. First, the Incarnation was conditioned by human sin. Luke 19:10 states: For the Son of man came to seek and to save that which was lost.
A more extended passage that states this as a reason for the Incarnation is John 3:13–21. The purpose of the Incarnation was to save sinners. In order to pay the penalty for sin, Yeshua had to be made “like unto” or “in the likeness of” sinful flesh. He was not made sinful, but in outward appearance, He looked like any other man. It was necessary for Him to be made in the likeness of sinful flesh, because He came for the purpose of dying for sinners. The Incarnation was conditioned by human sin in that human sin necessitated the Incarnation. As Hebrews 2:14 states, it was necessary for Him to become a sharer in flesh and blood in order to deal with the issue of sin.
Secondly, the Incarnation was to reveal God to man concerning the truths of the Father (Mat. 11:27; Jn. 1:18; 14:9). He came for the purpose of revealing the Father, according to John 1:18: No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has declared him.
He came to reveal the Father; therefore, in His sermons and discourses, He revealed the nature of the Father. In John 14:8–9, when one of His own disciples eventually asked Jesus: Show us the Father, He answered: If you have seen me, you have seen the Father. Everything that is true of the nature of the Father is true of the Son.
Thirdly, the Incarnation was to provide believers with an example for living (1 Pet. 2:21; 1 Jn. 2:6). In His humanity, Yeshua lived a lifestyle that the believer should imitate. This includes not only during the good times, but also in bad times. Not only is His strength to be their example, but also His sufferings are to be their example. He underwent a suffering in a meek manner and, they too, should undergo their suffering in the same way. He became a man to provide an example for living.
Fourthly, the Incarnation was to provide a sacrifice for sin (Heb. 2:9; 10:1–10; 1 Jn. 3:5). He came as the Incarnate Man to provide a sacrifice for sin. While animal sacrifices were allowed temporarily, all they could ever do was cover the sins of the Old Testament saints; they could never take away the sins of the Old Testament saints. The removal of sin required better blood than animal blood. The better blood was human blood, but it had to be sinless human blood. This ruled out every human being that had existed since the fall of Adam with one exception, and that was the God-Man, Yeshua. As a result of the Incarnation, He became a man. Being in the form of a man, He had human blood and, therefore, better blood than animal blood. Jesus had sinless human blood; for that reason, He was able to become the sacrifice for sin.
Fifth, the Incarnation was to destroy the works of the Devil; to render his works inoperative (Jn. 12:31; 16:11; Col. 2:15; Heb. 2:14; 1 Jn. 3:8). Of these five passages, perhaps the clearest statement of this fact is Hebrews 2:14: Since then the children are sharers in flesh and blood, he also himself in like manner partook of the same; that through death he might bring to nought him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.
Sixth, the Incarnation was to enable Yeshua to be a merciful High Priest. This is especially stressed in the Book of Hebrews (Heb. 2:17–18; 5:1–2; 8:1; 9:11–12, 14). Hebrews 2:17–18 follows the statement on the Incarnation in verse 14, and then states that it made Him a merciful and faithful high priest. The Hebrews 5 passage emphasizes that for one to be a genuine priest, he had to be human. Thus, if Jesus had not become a real man, He could not have been a high priest. By becoming a man, by becoming Incarnate, He could become, and continues to be, the High Priest of believers. This also enables Him to offer sacrifices, as only priests could do. He was able to offer a better sacrifice—His own blood—not animal blood.
Seventh, the Incarnation was to fulfill the Davidic Covenant. The Davidic Covenant promised that a Descendent of David would sit upon David’s throne forever. It was necessary for Yeshua to become a real man through the Virgin Mary, because she was a member of the House of David, therefore, Jesus was a member of the House of David. Because He is both God and man, He now lives forever, and He will rule upon David’s throne forever (Lk. 1:31–33, 68–70).
Eighth, the Incarnation was to confirm the promises of God (Rom. 15:8–9) that were predicted in the Old Testament. In order for these prophecies to be fulfilled, the Incarnation was necessary.
Ninth, the Incarnation provided for Yeshua the Messiah to become highly exalted (Phil. 2:9–11). The exaltation could come only by means of suffering. God, as God only, is incapable of suffering. But when God the Son became a man, He then became capable of suffering. He certainly did suffer; He suffered humiliation and much more. As a result, He became highly exalted. This, too, was the purpose of the Incarnation.
Tenth, the Incarnation was to restore dominion over the earth to man (Heb. 2:5–9). It was to man that God gave dominion over the earth. But man lost it when Satan caused him to fall; Satan usurped the authority over the earth which had been given to man (Jn. 12:31; 14:30; 16:11; 2 Cor. 4:4; 1 Jn. 5:19). The Messiah defeated Satan; now, as a man, He must restore man’s dominion over the earth, which He will do in the Kingdom.
Eleventh, the Incarnation was to bring many sons to glory (Heb. 2:10–11). This, too, required the Incarnation.
And twelfth, the Incarnation was to deliver believers from the fear of death (Heb. 2:15). This, too, was accomplished through the Incarnation.
IV. THE CHARACTER OF THE INCARNATE MESSIAH
In His humanity, what kind of character did the God-Man have? The Incarnation produced seven characteristics in Jesus.
First, He was absolutely holy (Lk. 1:35; Jn. 8:46; 14:30; Acts 2:27; 3:14; 4:27; Heb. 7:26).
Secondly, He was sinless (2 Cor. 5:21; Heb. 4:15; 1 Pet. 2:22; 1 Jn. 3:5).
Thirdly, He had genuine love. Because He was both God and man, He could love in a divine way and also in a human way. In either case, it was a real and genuine love that He expressed (Mk. 10:21; Jn. 13:1; 14:31; 19:25–27; Gal. 2:20; Eph. 3:19; 5:25).
Fourthly, He was truly humble (2 Cor. 8:9; Phil. 2:5–8).
Fifth, He was truly meek (Mat. 11:29; 2 Cor. 10:1).
Sixth, He lived a life of prayer (Mat. 14:23; Mk. 1:35; Lk. 6:12; 22:44; Jn. 17:1–26; Heb. 5:7).
Seventh, He was an incessant worker (Jn. 5:17; 9:4). However, He was not a “workaholic,” for He knew when to step aside and rest. He knew when to withdraw from the masses, and He knew when to go into the deserts for a time of rest and prayer.
These are the seven characteristics of Yeshua which resulted from the Incarnation. As previously mentioned, one of the purposes of the Incarnation was to set an example for living. These seven characteristics do exactly that and they should be imitated by believers in their day to day spiritual lives.
V. THE HUMANITY OF THE MESSIAH
The Incarnation resulted in a Being who was both God and man: Jesus was very man and very God. What are some of the evidences that Yeshua was truly human, that He was a real man and did not merely have an appearance of man? There are ten ways to show that Yeshua was indeed a real man.
First, His humanity is seen in that He had all the essentials of human nature: body, soul, and spirit. First, He had a real body (Mat. 26:12, 26, 28; Lk. 2:21; 24:39; Jn. 2:21; Heb. 2:14, 10:5, 10). Secondly, He had a soul (Mat. 26:38; Jn. 12:27; Acts 2:27). Thirdly, He had a human spirit (Mk. 2:8; 8:12; Lk. 23:46; Jn. 11:33; 13:21). Jesus clearly had all the essentials of human nature.
Secondly, His humanity is seen in that He had a real human birth. Again, it is not His birth that was miraculous, but it was His conception that was miraculous. His birth was like that of any other human being (Mat. 1:18–2:12; Lk. 1:26–38; 2:1–20). This is stated as a doctrine in Galatians 4:4 where Paul wrote that Jesus was born of a woman.
Thirdly, His humanity is seen in that He had a human ancestry, being of the ancestry of Abraham and David (Mat. 1:1; Rom. 1:3).
Fourthly, His humanity is seen in that He had human names. He is called Jesus or Joshua, a common human name of that day. He was called the Son of Man eighty-two times, a title that emphasizes His humanity.
Fifth, His humanity is seen in that He was actually called a man by others. John the Baptist called Him a man in John 1:30; the multitudes called Him a man in John 10:33; Peter called Him a man in Acts 2:22; and Paul called Him a man in Acts 13:38; Romans 5:15; 1 Corinthians 15:21, 47; Philippians 2:8; and 1 Timothy 2:5.
Sixth, His humanity is seen in that He called Himself a man in John 8:40.
Seventh, His humanity is seen in that He was subject to all the laws of human development (Lk. 2:40, 52). Like every other human being, He developed in four areas: mentally, physically, spiritually, and socially.
Eighth, His humanity is seen in that He was subject to all human experiences: He was hungry (Mat. 4:2; 21:18); He was thirsty (Jn. 19:28); He was weary (Jn. 4:6); He was sleepy (Mat. 8:24). He was subject to all human emotions: love (Mk. 10:21); compassion (Mat. 9:36); anger and grief, which He demonstrated in weeping and shedding tears (Mk. 3:5; Jn. 11:35; Heb. 5:7). Furthermore, He agonized (Lk. 22:44); He was troubled (Jn. 12:27); He was tested (Heb. 2:18; 4:15); He needed to pray (Mat. 14:23; Mk. 1:35; Lk. 6:12). These are all evidences of His humanity.
Ninth, in His humanity, He had limited knowledge; there were things He did not know. Two examples of this limited knowledge are Mark 13:32 and John 11:34.
And tenth, His humanity is evidenced in the fact that He died (Jn. 19:30, 34; Heb. 2:14; 5:8).
VI. THE HUMILIATION OF THE MESSIAH
Part of the humanity of Jesus involved His humiliation. There is a biblical doctrine that theologians call “The Humiliation of the Messiah.” His humiliation is seen in twelve different ways.
First, His humiliation included the Incarnation itself. The fact that God had to become a man was a “stepping down,” a humiliation (Gal. 4:4; Phil. 2:6–7; Heb. 2:14).
Secondly, His humiliation is seen in that He was made in the likeness of sinful flesh. He looked like a sinful human being. This, too, is part of His humiliation (Rom. 8:3; Phil. 2:7).
Thirdly, His humiliation is seen in that He was born in a lowly condition. To make matters worse, He was not born into a wealthy family, but into a family that was poverty-stricken. Matthew 2:23 states that of all the places to be raised, He was raised in one of the most denigrated towns: Nazareth. Because He was raised in Nazareth, He was called a Nazarene, and that was not considered a favorable title. It was not a title of respect. Can any good thing come out of Nazareth? was a popular saying. It was a city of disrepute. Furthermore, Matthew 8:20 states that He had no wealth of His own. Luke 2:7 says He was born in a stable and laid in a manger. Luke 2:22–24 teaches that He was born into a family that was so poverty-stricken, that the only offering the parents could afford to give was two turtledoves, a sign of their economic destitution. 2 Corinthians 8:9 states that, by means of the Incarnation, he became poor.
Fourthly, His humiliation is seen in that He was born under the law (Gal. 4:4). He had to subject Himself to a Law that He Himself had originated. That, too, was part of the humiliation of Jesus.
Fifth, His humiliation is seen in that He had to be in submission to the limitations of humanity. This is the doctrine of The Kenosis, meaning “The Emptying.” This is the point of Philippians 2:5–11. It means that, while He did not lose any of His divine attributes, He did have limited use of them. This limited use of His divine attributes was also part of His humiliation.
Sixth, His humiliation is seen in that He had to undergo all the miseries of life discussed earlier under the heading “The Humanity of the Messiah,” and this, too, was a mark of His humiliation (Jn. 7:5; Heb. 4:15; 12:3).
Seventh, His humiliation is seen in that He became a servant and ministered as a servant. This is illustrated in John 13:1–11 when He washed the disciples’ feet. It is also stated as a doctrine in Philippians 2:7.
Eighth, His humiliation is seen in that He bore man’s sins; He had to carry man’s sins. And that was humiliating for One who was absolutely holy and sinless (2 Cor. 5:21; 1 Pet. 2:24).
Ninth, His humiliation is seen in that He endured the curse of the death on the cross. Of all the ways He could have been executed, the most ignoble execution, the most humiliating way to die was by hanging on a tree. This was considered by Jewish culture and custom to be the most degrading death of all. So, this, too, was a part of His humiliation (Gal. 3:13; Heb. 12:2).
Tenth, His humiliation is seen in His death. The very fact that the God-Man, the Holy and Sinless One, had to undergo death was a part of His humiliation (Phil. 2:8).
Eleventh, His humiliation is seen in His burial. The fact that He had to be buried like every other man was a sign of His humiliation (Mat. 27:59–60; Acts 13:34–35; 1 Cor. 15:4). The humiliation of His burial is seen further in that none of those who were close to Yeshua throughout His life and ministry were involved in the burial. They kept their distance. Jesus was buried by two men who, up until then, were secret, distant believers: Joseph of Arimathaea and Nicodemus.
And twelfth, His humiliation is seen in His descent into Sheol or Hades. He, too, had to descend to that temporary place of confinement for the saints (Acts 2:27, 31; Eph. 4:9; 1 Pet. 3:18–19).
These are the twelve points that clearly teach the concept of the humiliation of the Messiah, very much a part of His humanity, which, in turn, is part of the concept of the Incarnation.
As believers look at all these things to which Yeshua submitted Himself, as they look at all these points of His humiliation, they should not miss the opportunity to remind themselves exactly why He did all this. The reason was so that He could become their Substitute. He lived as a man and died as a man, but He died a substitutionary death for man’s sins. As believers undergo the sufferings of human life, as they undergo deprivation or humiliation, they should always have this picture in their minds: that they have not suffered anything nor will ever suffer anything that is anywhere near comparable to the sufferings of Yeshua the Messiah. If this is kept in mind, they will see what a great thing He did, and will understand that He did it for them. Believers should always be grateful that He was willing to be humiliated in order to provide salvation and power for living in this life. When they suffer, let them not react against God. Let them remember that when they suffer, they are co suffering with Him. The Bible promises that if they suffer with Him, they shall also be glorified with Him.
VII. THE DEITY OF THE MESSIAH
The Incarnation resulted in One who was both man and God. Earlier, it was shown that He was a real man, that He had real humanity. The Incarnation did not mean that He gave up any portion of His deity. It was not a lessening of deity, but it was perfect deity taking hold of and adding to Himself a human nature. There are seven evidences of His deity.
First, Jesus had all the divine names. There are seven examples of His divine names. He is called God (Jn. 1:1; 20:28; Heb. 1:8); the Son of God (Mat. 16:16), as well as the Son of Man; Lord (Mat. 22:43–45; Acts 9:17); the Alpha and the Omega, an expression meaning “the beginning and the end” (Rev. 1:8); the first and the last (Rev. 1:17); the image (Col. 1:15). The Greek word for image means “prototype,” the image in its revealed reality; He is the visible manifestation of the invisible God. And the last divine name is: the very image (Heb. 1:3); He is the exact impress of the divine nature.
Secondly, He has all the attributes of deity. There are ten attributes that prove His deity. First, He has the attribute of eternality (Mic. 5:2; Jn. 1:1; 8:58; Col. 1:17; Heb. 1:11). Secondly, He has the attribute of immutability; He is unchangeable (Heb. 1:10–12; 13:8). Thirdly, He has the attribute of self existence (Jn. 1:1–3; 5:26). Fourthly, He is life (Jn. 1:4; 14:6; Acts 3:15). Fifthly, He has the fullness of the Godhead (Col. 2:9); everything that was true of God the Father and of the God the Holy Spirit is also true of the Son. Sixth, He has the attribute of holiness (Heb. 7:26). Seventh, He has attribute of sovereignty; He is the sovereign God (Mat. 28:18; Jn. 5:27; 17:2; Acts 2:36; 1 Cor. 12:3; Phil. 2:9–10; Col. 1:18; 1 Pet. 3:22; Rev. 19:16). Eighth, He has the attribute of omnipotence; He is all powerful (Lk. 8:25; Jn. 10:18; 1 Cor. 15:25, 28; Phil. 3:21; Col. 1:16–17; 1 Tim. 1:12; Heb. 1:3; 7:25; Jude 24, Rev. 1:8). Ninth, He has the attribute of omniscience; He is all knowing (Mat. 11:27; Jn. 1:48; 2:25; 10:15; 13:1, 11; 16:30; 18:4; 19:28; 1 Cor. 4:5; Col. 2:3; Rev. 2:23). While in His humanity He had limited knowledge, in His deity He is all-knowing. Tenth, He has attribute of omnipresence; He is also everywhere (Mat. 18:20; 28:20; Jn. 3:13; 14:18, 20, 23). Thus, He has all the attributes of deity.
Thirdly, He does the works that only God can do. There are six examples of His works. First, He did the work of creation (Jn. 1:3, 10; 1 Cor. 8:6; Col. 1:16; Heb. 1:3, 10). Secondly, He does the work of the preservation of the Creation (Col. 1:17; Heb. 1:3). Thirdly, He has the power to forgive sins (Mat. 9:2, 6; Lk. 5:24; 7:47–48). Fourthly, He is the One who sends the Holy Spirit, something only God can do (Jn. 15:26). Fifth, He is going to raise the dead, both the righteous and unrighteous (Jn. 6:40). Sixth, He is the One who will execute the final judgments (Mat. 25:31–46; Jn. 5:22–27; Acts 17:31; 2 Cor. 5:10; 2 Tim. 4:1). He does the works of God, which proves His deity.
Fourthly, His deity is seen in that worship was ascribed to Him (Mat. 14:33; Jn. 9:38; 20:28; Phil. 2:10; Heb. 1:6).
Fifth, His deity is seen in that He is the One who gives immortality (Jn. 5:28–29; 6:39–40; 17:2; Phil. 3:21).
Sixth, His deity is seen in His association with the Trinity. First, He is associated with God the Father (Jn. 10:30; 14:23). Secondly, He is associated with both the Father and the Holy Spirit (Mat. 28:19; 2 Cor. 13:14).
And seventh, His deity is seen in His own divine claims. He made four such divine claims. First, He claimed to enjoy the closest possible relationship to God so that to know the Messiah is to know God (Jn. 8:19; 14:7); to see the Messiah was to see God (Jn. 12:45; 14:9); to receive Him was to receive God (Mk. 9:37); to honor Him was to honor God (Jn. 5:23). He said: I and the Father are one (Jn. 10:30). Secondly, He claimed to be the object of saving faith (Mat. 11:28; Jn. 3:36; 14:1; 17:3). Thirdly, He claimed absolute dominion over His followers, something which only God has the right to expect (Mat. 10:37–39). Fourthly, He claimed sovereignty over the laws and institutions of God: He claimed to be the Lord of the Temple (Mat. 12:6); lord of the Sabbath (Mat. 12:8); Lord of the Kingdom of God (Mat. 16:19); and sovereignty over the New Covenant (Mat. 26:28). The fact that Yeshua made these divine claims means one of three things: either He was a deceiver or He was self deceived or He truly was who He claimed to be. Those who know Him, know Him to indeed be the One He claimed to be: their Messiah, their Savior, and their God.