The Baptism of Christ (Yeshua Messiah): Implications of “Deity”?
This discussion has not yet been rewritten or presented in the updated multi-part format. That will occur as God wills to provide me the time and energy to do so.
The following discussion is taken from my commentary on the Gospel of Matthew. As you will see, there is much to be learned from the record of the mikvah (immersion, baptism) of Yeshua.
- Mt 3:16,17 (KJV)
- 16And Yeshua, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17And lo a voice from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
Parallels are found in Mark 1:10,11 and Luke 3:21,22.
- Mark 1:10,11 (KJV)
- 10And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him: 11And there came a voice from heaven, saying, “Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
- Luke 3:21,22 (KJV)
- 21Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Yeshua also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 22And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, “Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.”
When Yeshua was baptized the Spirit descended upon him and the Father spoke from heaven. Since Yeshua was on the earth and The Father was in heaven they are clearly depicted as distinct entities. You need to begin to take note of these subtle – or not so subtle – bits of evidence showing distinction between YHVH (God) and Yeshua. As we seek to show that Yeshua is not YHVH it is important to include in our evidence each such occurrence. I will often appear redundant as I note each of these distinction passages, but I do so realizing they are usually missed by the casual reader of Scripture. I missed it myself for 30 years until I began to earnestly pray to HaShem (God) for removal of all bias and undertook the most exhaustive and sincere series of studies of my life.
One could legitimately present the argument that the Holy Spirit was placed upon Yeshua at his baptism, thus anointing him for his mission. However, the church, despite the plain reading of the Gospel records of Yeshua’s baptism and the Messianic Psalm, has historically considered such belief heretical. Of course what the church considers heretical is of less importance to me than what the Scriptures actually say, and such should be the attitude of every sincere seeker of truth.
It is somewhat difficult to understand why, IF Yeshua is God, “God” would make such a show of the Spirit visually descending upon Yeshua, unless we are to believe that the Spirit left Yeshua just prior to his baptism then returned solely for theatric purposes. However, the precise time of the Holy Spirit indwelling Yeshua is less important to fulfillment of his being the Messiah of prophecy than is the fact that the Holy Spirit was put on him from The Father. The only way to prove Yeshua is Messiah is from the Messianic prophesies found in the Tanakh. If the Spirit was not placed upon him in a public setting so that it could be witnessed, he could not be said to have fulfilled the Messianic prophesies; therefore, had this account not occurred the prophesies in Isaiah 11:2, 42:1 could not have been witnesses as being fulfilled. It is to this that Yeshua possibly refers when he says in verse 15, “Permit it at this time; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.”
Verses from the Tanakh relating to Matthew 3:16,17:
- Isa. 11:2
- 2And the spirit of YHVH shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of YHVH.
Please note from the above verse that “the Spirit of the LORD (YHVH) shall rest upon him….” This implies that the Spirit was not an intrinsic characteristic of Yeshua prior to the time (whenever that might have been) of it resting upon him. We once again see in this a distinction. In this case the distinction is in the Spirit, which had to rest upon the man Yeshua. Other versions use the term “alight” upon him. The fact to note is the need for this separate and distinct Spirit to “alight” upon Yeshua. Common sense and reason given to us by God clearly implies a distinction, and the ability to reason was given to us for us to use.
- Isa. 42:1 (KJV)
- 1 “Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.”
This passage is fulfilled in YHVH’s statement, “…in whom I am well pleased,” at Yeshua’s baptism. The Hebrew word used in Isaiah for “delighteth” is ratsah (raw-tzaw Strong’s #7521) and literally means “to be pleased with”. The Greek word used in Matthew 3:17 for “well pleased” is eudokeo (yoo-dok-eh’-o Strong’s #2106), and means exactly the same thing – “to be pleased with”! You can’t be much closer than that! The Hebrew word in Isaiah 42:1 and the Greek word in Matt. 3:17 mean the same thing.
The fulfillment of Isaiah 42:1 at Yeshua’s baptism could not be much more precise!
- In Isaiah we have YHVH putting His Spirit upon Him. In Matthew 3:16 we have the Spirit of YHVH descending upon Yeshua. A perfect fulfillment.
- In Isaiah we have YHVH stating how He is well pleased with his Servant. In Matthew 3:17 we have YHVH’s voice from heaven literally saying He is well pleased with Yeshua. Another perfect fulfillment.
It must be noted that Messiah is called the servant of YHVH. Also, as just discussed, YHVH put His Spirit upon him (Yeshua). Once again there is a distinction shown between YHVH and Yeshua. It is also obvious that the one putting and the one on whom it is put cannot be the same entity. Such common sense observations are often passed through with a preacher’s “slight of hand” as the church zealously teaches what Scripture clearly does not say. The point here is that for one to have something put upon him there must be a separate entity doing the “putting”; thus, this passage and the previous make it crystal clear that Yeshua (the putee) and YHVH (the puter) are not the same.
The pronouns show distinction (i.e. my servant…I uphold…I have put…upon him: he shall…). They also show the delight YHVH took in his servant. YHVH delighted in the one on whom He had placed His Spirit – a point that buttresses even more the distinction.
- Isa. 42:21 (KJV)
- 21The LORD (YHVH) is well pleased for his righteousness’ sake; he will magnify the law, and make it honorable.
Once again realizing the need for redundancy I wish for you to note the fact that the one who is pleased and the one that is pleasing to him cannot be the same. Thus, distinction is shown between the pleased (YHVH) and the one in whom He is pleased (Yeshua). Also, the LORD (YHVH) is pleased for his (Yeshua’s) righteousness sake. Distinction, distinction, distinction………always take note of distinction.
A side note of critical importance is the fact that this passage indicates the Messiah was to magnify the Torah (Law) and make it honorable! The Hebrew word translated “magnify” is gadal (gaw-dal’) and means to make great, to cause to grow, to be magnified, and the Hebrew word translated “honorable” is ‘adar (aw-dar’) and means to make glorious, to make majestic. Since the prophesied Messiah was to do this how can anyone possibly believe Messiah Yeshua would “make great and magnify” Torah by abolishing it? Or how can it be conceived in the mind of anyone that this Messiah would “make glorious and make majestic” Torah by declaring it ended?
According to Is. 42:21, any Messiah that “did away with” the Torah (Law) is a false Messiah since he would not fulfill this clear prophecy (Isa. 42:21). If you consider the Eternal Torah of YHVH to be abolished you are not a follower of the true Messiah that embraced Torah, instead you are a follower of the anti-Messiah (antichrist). It is this very point that rightly causes many knowledgeable Jews to reject the “Christ” preached in churches. Unlike the majority of Christians, they are keenly aware of what the true Messiah’s relationship to Torah is and realize the preaching of the abolishment of the Law (Torah) is blatantly unscriptural.
Christianity literally preaches an anti-Messiah message when it teaches Yeshua brought about an end to Torah! Such false teaching is, perhaps, Satan’s primary way in which he continually seeks to prevent Israel from recognizing the Messiah. Yeshua and his brethren of the flesh are literally kept apart by false doctrine spread by Christianity! No Jew will ever accept a Messiah (and rightly so) that
- Is promoted as “God in the flesh”, and
- Is said to have abolished the eternal Torah of YHVH.
Any teaching that is against Torah, is also against Yeshua Messiah, the prophesied Torah promoting and keeping Messiah of Scripture, and is thus the teachings of anti-Messiah (antichrist)! Those that teach Messiah brought an end to Torah are unknowing promoters of the spirit of antichrist (usurper of Messiah) that Satan is using to deceive the world. If you truly feel Torah has been abolished, please read the entire Bible and also note Yeshua’s strong pro-Torah stance in the New Testament. Your eternal destiny depends upon you searching for truth. It is your responsibility and yours alone to verify the truth, as did the Bereans in Acts 17.
- Isa. 61:1 (KJV)
- 1 “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me…”
Ok, here we go again. By now you should be seeing the clear distinction between YHVH and Yeshua. Common sense, necessary inference dictates the one anointing and the one being anointed are separate and distinct entities, as does the Spirit (separate entity) being upon me (Messiah). The fact this Spirit was upon him denotes its origins were outside the one on which it was upon just as the Spirit coming upon and indwelling Yeshua’s followers denotes the origin of the Spirit is not from within the believer himself.
- Psalms 2:7,8 (KJV)
- 7 “I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. 8Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.”
This Psalm prophesies of YHVH speaking to the Messiah (Yeshua). When two are in conversation it is generally the rule that the one speaking and the one listening are separate and distinct. Such is the case here. YHVH said, “Thou art my Son…” which shows this distinction in no uncertain terms. If I say to my son “thou art my son” I am certainly not talking to myself! I am talking to my son. A man and his child are not the same entity despite the intoxicated minds of the mystic Constantinian Christian/Messianic/Nazarene leaders that unintentionally promote pagan mysteries. I have no son, but forgive my wishful thinking. Please allow a man to dream, but if I did I would joyously proclaim to others “he is my son (or daughter)” and would not be talking to myself!”
The prophecy of Psalms 2:7 clearly referred to Yeshua’s being “begotten”. Some will say this occurred at his birth. Some say it happened at his baptism. Paul, however, says in Acts 13:33 that Messiah was officially and fully “begotten” upon his resurrection. I comment in an article on the Son of God that I feel Yeshua went through a PROCESS of becoming the FULL “Son of God” and believe that process was COMPLETED upon his resurrection. Regardless of which theory you support (I personally believe Paul), the following points still apply. YHVH said “this day have I begotten thee”. Unless YHVH is lying it is clear the “begetting” did not occur until that instant, and I do not consider YHVH to be an Elohim of lies. That wicked characteristic resides with Satan – the father of lies; therefore, if anyone implies a literal eternal nature for Messiah they conflict directly with this prophecy and others. I ask those of you that are thinking the New Testament proves Yeshua’s eternal nature to please continue reading. That misunderstanding will be corrected in depth as we proceed and is covered in some of the articles and links as well.
The fact that Messiah was begotten (born – for lack of a better term) also implies one must give birth. It is a common rule that the one giving birth and the one that is born are separate and distinct. I do not know of any recorded situation where a woman gave birth to herself; yet, Constantinian Christian/Messianic/Nazarene leaders would have us believe a similar impossibility here. Oh yes, one could attempt to argue that YHVH gave birth to Himself at some infinite point in history since He is the Infinite Elohim (God); however, the Scriptures plainly teach YHVH has no origin or time of birth. YHVH is infinite, timeless, and eternal. No matter how far back one cares to imagine – a trillion years or whatever – that point in time is still a tiny span of time compared to infinity. Infinity means timeless and no amount of imagination or 1 followed by zeros can change that. Besides, YHVH said “this day have I begotten (birthed) thee…” thus, the time of Messiah’s begetting is fixed. Since his time of being begotten is fixed and YHVH is infinite, having never been “begotten”, Yeshua cannot possibly be the YHVH! The one being begotten according to the clear reading of this Messianic Psalm is not eternal since he was begotten that day!
Finally, note how YHVH said “Ask of me, and I shall give thee…for thine inheritance…for thy possession.” He was referring to Yeshua the Messiah. Note the pronouns once again. Rules of grammar – be it Hebrew or translated English – dictate the me/I and the thee/thine/thy are separate and distinct entities. Thus, there is a clear distinction between the ONE Elohim and the Anointed One – Messiah Yeshua.
The Book of Psalms in particular, if read in it’s entirety, clearly presents repeatedly the Messiah as an obedient, Torah observant servant of HaShem (God) – but NOT as HaShem.
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