Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Matthew 18:20

Matthew 18:20

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the midst of them.

World English Bible translation

Matthew 28:20

"Teaching them to observe all things which I commanded you. Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen.

World English Bible translation

The above words of Jesus are offered as proof that Jesus is omnipresent, one of the acclaimed incommunicable attributes that belong only to the Supreme Being.

At most, however, the scriptures only prove that the God and Father of Jesus has given to Jesus power to be in more than one place at once. That Jesus has been given by his God the power to be present in more than one place at once is not denied. (Matthew 28:18; Luke 10:22; John 3:35; 5:22-27; 1 Corinthians 15:27) As the one appointed by God as "Lord" over the church (Acts 2:36; 10:42; Ephesians 1:22; Hebrews 1:9; 3:2), Jesus would of necessity need to be present in some way with his followers.

And yet the scriptures also say:

Acts 3:19 Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that so there may come times of refreshing from the presence [face, person] of [Yahweh],
Acts 3:
20 and that he may send Christ Jesus, who was ordained for you before,
Acts 3:21 whom the heaven must receive [or, take hold of] until the times of restoration of all things, whereof God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets that have been from ancient times.

So in some way also Jesus is received, held by, heaven, until the times of restoration of all things.

How is Jesus present with the disciples? The scriptures indicate that he is present by means of the holy spirit, which spirit Yahweh has given to Jesus. -- 1 John 3:24; 4:13; Acts 1:4; 2:33; John 15:26; See also: John 14:17,26; Acts 1:5,8; 9:31; Romans 8:1,9-17; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19; 2 Corinthians 1:22; 3:3; 12:18; Philippians 2:1; 2 Timothy 1:14.

There is nothing, however, in Matthew 18:20; 28:20 that offer any proof that Jesus has an incommunicable attribute of Yahweh. The idea has to be added to and read into these scriptures.

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