Where in the Bible does Jesus actually say He is the LORD God and that men should worship Him?


Jesus says, in front of the scribes and Pharisees, something that they all plainly recognize, and it is something that they feel is worthy of killing him for "blasphemy" over.

What Jesus said is "Before Abraham was, I AM." By saying this, Jesus called Himself, the LORD God Almighty, and the Jewish teachers, scribes and Pharisees recognized it immediately because they wanted to kill him because of it.

John 8:48-59King James Version (KJV)

48 Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?

49 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.

50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.

51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.

52 Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death.

53 Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?

54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God:

55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.

56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.

57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?

58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I AM.

59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

(stoning here was a method of capital punishment, and the fact that they began to do it, meant that they had judged what He said as worthy of death, since He had called Himself God.) King James Version (KJV)

(Before Abraham was, I AM is a direct reference to God as the Jews knew Him, and is how God expressed Himself when He spoke to Moses and told him whom to say, 'sent Moses' to Pharoh / Ramses)


Yes and yes. Of primary importance is that Jesus did not have to go around saying "I am the Lord God"; rather, he demonstrated it much more often than he claimed it. He did, however, claim to be God in the flesh, in a variety of ways and at various times. @Hello has already covered Jesus' "I AM" (John 8), but there were many other incidents which made Jesus' deity very apparent, through words and deeds. Here are a few of them:

  • Jesus forgave sins, something only God can do. That Jesus said to the paralyzed man whose friends lowered him from the roof, "Your sins are forgiven," was tantamount to his claiming deity. The legal experts and Pharisees inferred correctly what Jesus implied; namely, that as God in the flesh, he had the authority to forgive sins:

The legal experts and Pharisees began to mutter among themselves, "Who is this who insults God? Only God can forgive sins!" 22 Jesus recognized what they were discussing and responded, "Why do you fill your minds with these questions? 23 Which is easier—to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, ‘Get up and walk'? 24 But so that you will know that the Human One has authority on the earth to forgive sins" —Jesus now spoke to the man who was paralyzed, "I say to you, get up, take your cot, and go home" (Luke 5; see also Mark 2:1 ff., and Luke 7:47).

  • Jesus claimed equality with the Father. True enough, he did not say literally, "I am the Father," thereby claiming he was the Lord God. By the same token, however, his claim that whoever sees him also sees the Father is tantamount to it. Now Jesus was not the Father, nor did he claim to be, but then the Father was not the Son and the Son not the Father, since the Godhead is comprised of three persons (i.e., Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), each of whom is divine. "God in three persons, blessed trinity" (from the hymn "Holy, Holy, Holy").

7 "'If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him." 8 Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." 9 Jesus said to him, "Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, 'Show us the Father '? 10 "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works'" (John 14 NASB).

  • Jesus accepted the worship of himself. The women who were told by an angel of the Lord to leave the empty tomb and tell the other disciples Jesus had risen were met by Christ on the way. When they saw him, they bowed down, touched his feet, and worshiped him. Had Jesus not claimed to be God, would he not have told the women not to worship him, but to worship God? Instead, he simply accepted their worship.

8 "And they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy and ran to report it to His disciples. 9 And behold, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, 'Do not be afraid; go and take word to My brethren to leave for Galilee, and there they will see Me'" (Matthew 28).

  • Jesus had the power and authority to raise people from the dead. Do you remember when Jesus came across a funeral procession in which a widow was grieving the death of her only son? Jesus merely touched the bier and uttered seven words (probably fewer in whatever language he spoke them):

"'Young man, I say to you arise!'" (Luke 4:14).

Immediately, the young man sat up and began to speak. What was the reaction of the crowd to this miracle?

"Fear gripped them all, and they began glorifying God, saying, 'A great prophet has arisen among us"' and, 'God has visited His people!'" (Luke 7:16).

The crowd clearly recognized Jesus' deity. Again, Jesus did not rebuke the crowd for attributing deity to him; he simply accepted their recognition of who he was and allowed them to praise him as God in their midst.

  • Jesus said in essence that he was the LORD (YHWH/Jehovah) by quoting an Old Testament passage":

[Jesus speaking] "'David himself said in the Holy Spirit,' 'THE LORD SAID TO MY LORD,' 'SIT AT MY RIGHT HAND, UNTIL I PUT YOUR ENEMIES BENEATH YOUR FEET.' 'David himself calls Him 'Lord'; so in what sense is He his son?'"

  • Jesus was recognized as being God, even when he was in the womb of his mother Mary:

[The words of Elizabeth, when Mary visited her very early in her--Mary's--pregnancy] "'And how has it happened to me, that the mother of my Lord would come to me?'"

Now Elizabeth may not have understood fully the import of her words, but she uttered them while being filled by the Holy Spirit, so they were clearly inspired words. Jesus, even while in the womb, was Elizabeth's Lord. True, Jesus didn't make this claim, but prophetic utterances found in Scripture give credence to Jesus' identity as God, our Savior (see 1 Timothy 1:1; 2:3; 4:10; Titus 1:2; and 2:13:3:4).

In conclusion, there are many other instances in which Jesus made his identity as the God-Man crystal clear both to his inner circle of disciples and to people at large. Whether his identity was crystal clear to the people, however, is another matter entirely. After his resurrection, however, they began to put the pieces of the puzzle together, and along with "doubting Thomas" could say of a certainty,

"'My Lord, and my God'" (John 20:28).

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    An interesting point is the phrase "I am in the father". Although I do not read Greek, I'd suggest that the Greek equivalent of the word "in" carries a lot of implications that are not apparent to us English speakers. Dec 31 '14 at 11:51
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    @WalterMitty just what I had in mind Dec 31 '14 at 13:39
  • @WalterMitty: Excellent point. The relationship among the three persons of the Godhead is characterized by a unity of deity, such that the Father is in the Son, the Son in the Father, and the Spirit in them both. This speaks of intimacy, oneness of purpose, and complete equality. It is as if there was but ONE will, not three. I suggest there was, is, and ever shall be ONE WILL. That's why Jesus in the prayer he taught his disciples said "Thy [i.e., the Father's] will be done on earth as in heaven." In the biggest of all possible pictures, that will can be summarized in the word REDEMPTION. Dec 31 '14 at 16:59

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