1. Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. – Mark 12:29 (spoken by Jesus)
2. Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God. – Exodus 34:14 (spoken by God)
3. Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. – Matthew 28:9
Now follow these points of logic according to those passages above:
1. There is only one Lord God.
2. No other ‘god’ shall be worshiped.
3. Jesus allows people to worship Him.
What can we conclude from the above three statements above? To borrow from C.S. Lewis:
A) Jesus is a fake, lying and pretending to be God.
B) Jesus really thinks He is God but isn’t, so He is crazy.
C) Jesus really is God.
Christians believe conclusion C.
Some people believe that Jesus is a good man or a prophet, but not God. But if so, how can they reconcile point of logic 3? If Jesus was not God, then what was this ‘good man, prophet, but not God’ doing going around actively encouraging people to think He was?
Surely a good man or a prophet would not intentionally mislead people – even into eternal damnation! Surely you do not get moral guidance from and look up to a nutter who thinks he is Napoleon.
Only conclusion C can be reconciled with any idea of Jesus as a good, sane person.
Now let’s take it further than the blog post title.
Among those who believe in Jesus, there are generally three types:
I) Believe that Jesus = God as one person with no distinction at all (Oneness doctrine)
III) Believe that Jesus = God as one being, but also as different persons with distinctions (part of the Trinity)
Why do I agree with type III? Consider the dilemmas posed by these Bible passages respective to the types of belief:
I) “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (Mark 13:32) and “Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you” (John 17:1). If Jesus is the exact same person as the Father with no distinction, then why do they know different things, and why does Jesus speak to the Father as if speaking to a separate person? (Compare with the strangeness of: I said to me, “Oh me, please give respect to me so that I can give respect to me.”)
II) See the first three passages cited above along with the three points of logic. If Jesus is not in any way God, then why does He let people worship Him as God?
III) Both the dilemmas above are resolved.
And that is why Christians like me believe that Jesus is God in the Trinitarian sense.
See also Why the Holy Spirit is Considered God (and So is Jesus) for more passages where Jesus allows worship of Him and The Christian Trinity in the Old Testament – God is I, Us and He for a specific Old Testament example.