Yeshua the Messiah, the Son of God

The name and title of Yeshua describe who he is and his purpose within the plan of God.

Core of the Bible podcast #107 – Yeshua the Messiah, the Son of God

In today’s episode, we will be talking about Yeshua as the human Messiah, the Son of God. You may recall from our last episode how I discussed the nature of Yahweh as the one true God, the Father, sole Creator and Maintainer of all that exists. He is the supreme authority of all people. He alone possesses inherent immortality, and has always existed.

When it comes to understanding who Yeshua is, we need to exercise care with a lot of time-honored Christian tradition that has built up over the centuries to see if we can peel back some of these layers of orthodoxy to reveal what the Bible actually says about this individual who has come  to be known as Jesus Christ.

So let’s start with his name. In modern vernacular, Jesus Christ has come to be used as a sort of first and last name for Yeshua instead of what it really is, a title of who he is. His “name” literally means that he is God’s deliverer, the anointed one of God.

Jesus is the English version of the Greek name Iesous, which in itself is a version of the Hebrew name Yeshua. However, if we were to take the name Yeshua and bring it straight over into English, it would not be Jesus, but it would be Joshua. Now the name Yeshua in Hebrew is not only a personal identifier, but also carries the meaning behind the name. In this case, the name Yeshua means “salvation or deliverance of God.” In fact, there are occasions in the Hebrew text where the word is used for just that purpose, and not as a proper name of an individual.

For me, that carries great weight. It was the name that Mary and Joseph were commanded to name him, and I believe we should be using, as well. That name was given to him to demonstrate his purpose, and we should always keep the purpose that God has in mind. Yeshua is the deliverance of God.

What’s a Messiah?

Throughout Scripture, there is mention of Yeshua as the Messiah.

John 20:31 – But these are written so that you may believe that Yeshua is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

Acts 2:36 – “Therefore let all the house of Israel know with certainty that God has made this Yeshua, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.”

Acts 5:42 – Every day in the temple, and in various homes, they continued teaching and proclaiming the good news that Yeshua is the Messiah.

Acts 9:22 – But Saul grew stronger and kept confounding the Jews who lived in Damascus by proving that Yeshua is the Messiah.

For us to have an understanding of this term, we need to look at some of the original Hebrew texts that use this phrase. The title of Messiah is based on the Hebrew mashiach, meaning anointed. In New Testament Greek, the word for anointed is christos, which is where we get the English derivative Christ.

To be anointed is to have oil of anointing, typically olive oil, smeared or poured over one’s head as an identifier of kingly leadership.

1 Samuel 10:1 – Samuel took the flask of oil, poured it out on Saul’s head, kissed him, and said, “Hasn’t Yahweh anointed you ruler over his inheritance?”

2 Kings 9:1-3 – The prophet Elisha called one of the sons of the prophets and said, “Tuck your mantle under your belt, take this flask of oil with you, and go to Ramoth-gilead. “When you get there, look for Jehu son of Jehoshaphat, son of Nimshi. Go in, get him away from his colleagues, and take him to an inner room. Then take the flask of oil, pour it on his head, and say, ‘This is what Yahweh says: “I anoint you king over Israel.”‘…

The oil of anointing can also be an identifier of religious leadership. For example, the priests of the tabernacle were anointed for the purpose of separation unto God in the ministering of the sacrificial and intercessory rites:

Exodus 29:21 – “Take some of the blood that is on the altar and some of the anointing oil, and sprinkle them on Aaron and his garments, as well as on his sons and their garments. So he and his garments will be holy, as well as his sons and their garments.

In a metaphorical or prophetic sense, to be anointed is also God’s stamp of approval as a human leader that he has selected for a specific purpose. This purpose can be a religious one, or as an acknowledgement of political empowerment. God’s anointed one can be anyone he has chosen for a specific leadership purpose, including a non-Jewish world leader like Cyrus:

Isaiah 45:1: “Thus saith Yahweh to his anointed [literally, his Messiah], to Cyrus, whose right hand I have held, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates; and the gates shall not be shut;”

In the spiritual sense, the anointing carries with it the idea of being empowered by the Spirit of God himself, as if enveloped within or overcome by his Spirit.

Judges 6:34 – The Spirit of Yahweh enveloped Gideon, and he blew the ram’s horn and the Abiezrites rallied behind him.

1 Samuel 10:10 – When Saul and his servant arrived at Gibeah, a group of prophets met him. Then the Spirit of God came powerfully on him, and he prophesied along with them.

1 Samuel 16:13 –  So Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed [David] in the presence of his brothers, and the Spirit of Yahweh came powerfully on David from that day forward…

Of course, Yeshua is identified by John the baptizer as being the anointed one of God, immersed and enveloped with the Spirit of God.

John 1:31-34 – “I didn’t know him, but I came baptizing with water so he might be revealed to Israel.” And John testified, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and he rested on him. I didn’t know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The one you see the Spirit descending and resting on ​– ​he is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and testified that this is the Son of God.”

Acts 10:37-38 – [Peter speaking] “You know the events that took place throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee after the baptism that John preached: “how God anointed Yeshua of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how he went about doing good and healing all who were under the tyranny of the devil, because God was with him.

As can be seen, God’s anointed ones or messiahs have been numerous and characteristically fulfill a role as a priest (as an intercessor or mediator) or prophet, or as a ruler. They are all humans through whom God accomplishes his specific purpose. It is through his empowerment that they have been able to achieve what he has desired. So, for someone to be considered a Messiah, an intercessor, ruler, deliverer of God, they must be a human being who has been selected and identified by God for a specific purpose. This is the role that the ultimate Messiah, Yeshua, had been destined for since birth.

The Son of God

Scripture clearly describes Yeshua not only as the Messiah who had been prophesied to deliver his people, but as the son of God, both as a title of unsurpassed honor and as a human born miraculously into existence of a virgin mother.

Luke 1:31-35 [Gabriel speaking] “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Yeshua. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.

Matthew 1:18-21 Now the birth of Yeshua Messiah was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly. But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of Yahweh appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. “She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Yeshua, for He will save His people from their sins.”

There is no indication in the Bible that Yeshua pre-existed his birth, except in the eternal mind and plan of God.

Ephesians 3:8-9, 11 To me [Paul], the very least of all saints, this grace was given, to preach to the nations the unfathomable riches of Messiah, and to bring to light what is the administration of the mystery which for ages has been hidden in God who created all things; … This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Messiah Yeshua our Lord,

1 Peter 1:20 For He [Messiah] was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you

God was prophesied to be his Father:

Psalm 2:7-8 “I will surely tell of the decree of Yahweh: He said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You. ‘Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Your inheritance, And the very ends of the earth as Your possession.

That God would be his Father is also a theme in the Psalms, where the Messiah is prophetically identified with David, the ideal King of Israel:

Psalm 89:20-29 “I have found David My servant; With My holy oil I have anointed him, With whom My hand will be established; My arm also will strengthen him. The enemy will not deceive him, Nor the son of wickedness afflict him. But I shall crush his adversaries before him, And strike those who hate him. My faithfulness and My lovingkindness will be with him, And in My name his horn will be exalted. I shall also set his hand on the sea And his right hand on the rivers. He will cry to Me, ‘You are my Father, My God, and the rock of my salvation.’ I also shall make him My firstborn, The highest of the kings of the earth. My lovingkindness I will keep for him forever, And My covenant shall be confirmed to him. So I will establish his descendants forever And his throne as the days of heaven.”

We have seen so far that God’s messiahs have been humans selected by God for specific purposes. And yet, there has been prophecy regarding a very specific anointed prophet and king, one who would be known as God’s own Son. Beyond the religious implications, this title of Son of God was also a title of world rulers, and in the time of Yeshua, it was the title of the emperor of Rome himself.

The Son of God as political ruler

Throughout ancient history, and even into some contemporary times, it has been a common practice across many cultures to have the supreme leader of the society referred to as divine, or a son of heaven, or son of God. So for the title son of God to be applied to Yeshua was not just a statement of his physical heritage, but it had subversive political overtones during the first century, as well. To claim that anyone besides the Roman emperor was a son of God was to imply that someone was a rival power to the emperor. 

For the early believers, claiming that Yeshua is Lord, the son of God, was equivalent to defying the authority of the Roman emperor, who was also called Lord, son of God (or son of the Divine). It was an act punishable by death. This was the cause of much of the persecution that early believers faced. 

Mark begins his narrative with the statement that Yeshua is the Messiah, the son of God:

Mark 1:1 The beginning of the gospel of Yeshua Messiah, the Son of God.

Unclean spirits also declared he was the son of God:

Matthew 8:29 And they cried out, saying, “What business do we have with each other, Son of God? Have You come here to torment us before the time?”

Mark 3:11 Whenever the unclean spirits saw Him, they would fall down before Him and shout, “You are the Son of God!”

Luke 4:41 Demons also were coming out of many, shouting, “You are the Son of God!” But rebuking them, He would not allow them to speak, because they knew Him to be the Messiah.

The angel Gabriel declared he would be called the son of God before he was born:

Luke 1:35 The angel answered and said to her, “The holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.

A repentant centurion witnessing the crucifixion declared him as the son of God:

Mar 15:39 When the centurion, who was standing right in front of Him, saw the way He breathed His last, he said, “Truly this man was the Son of God!”

Martha, the sister of Mary and Lazarus (all three of whom were very close friends of Yeshua) declared he was the son of God:

John 11:27 She said to Him, “Yes, Lord; I have believed that You are the Messiah, the Son of God, [even] He who comes into the world.”

The religious leaders knew that this was a common understanding of who he was, and accused him of this during his questioning:

Matthew 26:63-64 But Yeshua kept silent. And the high priest said to Him, “I adjure You by the living God, that You tell us whether You are the Messiah, the Son of God.” Yeshua said to him, “You have said it yourself; nevertheless I tell you, hereafter you will see the son of man sitting at the right hand of power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”

Luke 22:70 And they all said, “Are You the Son of God, then?” And He said to them, “You have said it.”

John 19:7 The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by that law He ought to die because He made Himself out to be the Son of God.”

John the baptizer, the disciples Nathanael and John, the apostle Paul, along with Silvanus and Timothy all declare Yeshua as the son of God:

John 1:34 “I myself have seen, and have testified that this is the Son of God.”

John 1:49 Nathanael answered Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God; You are the King of Israel.”

John 20:31 but these have been written so that you may believe that Yeshua is the Messiah, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.

2 Corinthians 1:19 For the Son of God, Messiah Yeshua, who was preached among you by us–by me and Silvanus and Timothy–was not yes and no, but is yes in Him.

1 John 5:13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

While Yeshua preferred to refer to himself as the son of man, in his teaching he was constantly referring to God as a heavenly father figure for all people, but more specifically, his own unique father:

John 8:54 Yeshua answered, “If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing; it is My Father who glorifies Me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God’;

John 20:17 Yeshua said to her, “Stop clinging to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.'”

From these references, it is abundantly clear throughout the Scriptures that Yeshua was known as the son of God. This term not only described his miraculous physical heritage, but carried with it the subversive political overtones, as well.

This demonstrates that being represented as God’s son, he cannot actually be God himself. In the trinitarian view, “Jesus” is not just the Son of God, but through centuries of theological discussion he has become God the Son, a phrase which exists nowhere in the Bible. As we have seen, names and titles are important, and the Hebrew understanding of the name Yeshua is “deliverance of God” and Messiah means “anointed one.” The concept of an Incarnation, God becoming a man, is so foreign to the Hebrew culture and the complete texture of the Bible that it defies description. In pagan mythology, gods can take on human form and perform miraculous works, but the Bible never claims that about Yeshua.

In Peter’s preaching, he being one of the closest disciples to Yeshua, proclaimed how it was God working through an obedient human Messiah that he was able to accomplish the works that he did.

Acts 10:37-38 – “You know the events that took place throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee after the baptism that John preached: how God anointed Yeshua of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how he went about doing good and healing all who were under the tyranny of the devil, because God was with him.

Peter proclaims God was with him through the anointing of his holy Spirit, not that he was God. Paul also proclaims Yeshua’s humanity as the perfect counterpoint to the humanity of Adam:

Romans 5:17 – Since by the one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man [Adam], how much more will those who receive the overflow of grace and the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Yeshua Messiah.

Yeshua himself claimed that the things he taught and the works he did was because of the power of Yahweh God, the Father, working through him:

John 12:49 – For I have not spoken from my own authority, but the Father himself who sent me has commanded me what I should say and what I should speak.

John 14:10 – “Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words I speak to you I do not speak on my own. The Father who lives in me does his works.

Look, I recognize that in this short time I cannot exhaustively provide the depth of the understanding of the human Messiah, but I am hoping that what we have covered here today begins to open up some areas of theological thinking that are admittedly difficult to summarize when so much tradition has been built up around it. Only a truly ancient Hebraic mindset, which no one shares today, including myself, can begin to understand the meaning of texts that have become muddled through modern Western thinking and anchored in medieval orthodoxy. However, I do believe that we can approximate that type of thinking when we begin to recognize the significance of the name of Yeshua as the deliverer of God, the title of Messiah as the Anointed One of God, and his uniqueness as the Son of God.

I believe it is when we begin to re-define terms related to philosophical theories about God that we begin to stray further from the language and meaning of the Bible. Over the centuries, the theology surrounding who God is and the nature of the Father, Son, and Spirit of God have become mired in the conjecture and imagination of men who try to use Greek philosophical terms like homeostasis, hypostases, homoousion, and ousia in attempts to describe what the nature of a trinitarian God is, but they all fall short of the simplicity of the Bible language.

In the Bible, Yeshua is revealed as the Son of God, in both the context of a miraculous birth and in his unique role as God’s deliverer and savior, his ultimate human Messiah. This places Yeshua at the center and the culmination of the Bible narrative becoming the exemplary human ideal in relation to his self-sacrificial service to God and to others.

This is why the principles of his Sermon on the Mount have such resonance with believers, even until this day, thousands of years later. He spoke of the Kingdom, a Kingdom based on the structure of the Ten Commandments, as both a near and present reality, a realm where vigilance would be required of those who sought to participate. These believers would be set apart and holy, trusting God for all of their needs, just as he did, and they would operate with God’s characteristics of forgiveness and compassion, demonstrating that they are the children of God.

As God’s unique Son, he was not God himself, but because of his faithful obedience even unto death, God resurrected him and exalted him to a position of honor and glory, that those who honor Yeshua would be honoring the Father God himself.


The Messiah I follow was a man miraculously born of a virgin, divinely named as Yeshua, the deliverance or salvation of God.  I believe he was anointed and empowered with the Word or Spirit of God at his water baptism, and raised again after death by the power of God. Although unique because of his birth, because he was human he lived a life of temptation, suffering and trial, and overcame all by trusting in his (and our) God, the Father. As a man trusting in God, he has become our example of faithful obedience. Because of his faithfulness, he was raised by God to immortality, and exalted to the highest place of  honor that no one else can attain. As prophesied, he has been granted an exalted position to rule all of God’s Creation in the eternal kingdom of God, as God’s metaphorical “right hand,” in deference only to God who, through him, judges all and rules all in all. Because of his faithfulness, God the Father has ordained that he is to receive the same honor as God himself.

At the time the New Testament writings were made, to express faith in Yeshua as the Messiah, true son of God was to reject the authority of the emperor by expressing total allegiance to Yeshua. Still today, it is through acknowledging his sonship (his unique human status and authority) and expressing total allegiance to him as Lord that we also obtain new life:

John 3:18 “He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John 20:31 but these have been written so that you may believe that Yeshua is the Messiah, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name.

1 John 4:15 Whoever confesses that Yeshua is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.

1 John 5:5, 12-13 Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Yeshua is the Son of God? … He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

It is only through the example of Yeshua’s self-sacrificial obedience that we can also become the fully obedient humans that God desires us to be.

These are the things that I believe about Yeshua as the Messiah, the Son of God. While much of this may be different than you may have heard or been taught before, I hope there are some nuggets of wisdom that you may want to ponder further in your own studies. Next time, I would like to move on to the topic of the Spirit of God to explore the biblical basis of the work and role of the Spirit in the life of believers.

Remember, there is a Core of the Bible virtual study group that is hosted through the Marco Polo video chat app. It is designed to discuss the topics that we cover each week and to help people with responses to questions that may come up. If you are interested in joining the discussion, simply download the free Marco Polo app and email me a request to join the group at I will be happy to send you a link to join the virtual Bible study group. You can also feel free to email me any of your thoughts or comments there, as well.

One true God

The Bible teaches there is only one true God. He is known as Yahweh, Almighty God, and the Father, among other names.

Core of the Bible podcast episode #106 – One true God

In today’s article, we will be talking about Yahweh as the one true God, and how I believe this basic Bible truth has become muddled by tradition and orthodoxy.

So to begin with, let me start by saying that I believe that the Bible reveals that there is only one true God, Yahweh, the Father, sole Creator and Maintainer of all that exists. He is the supreme authority of all people. He alone possesses inherent immortality, and has always existed. There is no other God to whom praise, honor, and glory is due.

Deuteronomy 4:35, 39 To you it was shown that you might know that Yahweh, He is God; there is no other besides Him. … “Know therefore today, and take it to your heart, that Yahweh, He is God in heaven above and on the earth below; there is no other.

One of the primary features of Jewish culture revolves around the reciting of what is known as the Shema. The Shema is based on a very familiar passage to most believers.

Deuteronomy 6:4-5 “Hear, O Israel! Yahweh is our God, Yahweh is one! “You shall love Yahweh your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.”

The Shema has been the primary defining statement of the Hebrew people since it was revealed to them.  Shema means “hear” and focuses on the primary declaration that Yahweh is one, or is the only God, or is singular in essence. All of these meanings revolve around the idea that there is only one God. Faithful Jews recite the Shema twice a day, and it is traditional for parents to teach their children to say it before they go to sleep at night. It is such an important Hebraic belief that it is also an ideal for Jews to say the Shema as their last words.

This fierce monotheism is what has distinctly set apart the Hebrew people since God first revealed himself to Abraham in approximately 2000 BC. The Babylonian, Egyptian, and Eastern religions (and later the Greeks and the Romans) have all been polytheistic religions, filled with hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of gods. The Hebrews were first and unique in their strict rejection of all other gods but one.

Yeshua himself confirms the importance of this concept of one God through the Shema, as well.

Mark 12:28-29 One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that [Yeshua] had answered them well, asked Him, “What commandment is the foremost of all?” Yeshua answered, “The foremost is, ‘Hear, O Israel! Yahweh our God, Yahweh is one…’

Now, here are some other verses confirming the unique authority of one God over all.

Isaiah 44:6, 8 “Thus says Yahweh, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, Yahweh of hosts: ‘I am the first and I am the last, And there is no God besides Me. … ‘Do not tremble and do not be afraid; Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it? And you are My witnesses. Is there any God besides Me, Or is there any other Rock? I know of none.'”

Isaiah 46:9-10 “Remember the former things long past, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things which have not been done, saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’…”

As would be expected, we find this same emphasis on one God in the New Testament writings.

1 Corinthians 8:4-6 Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one. For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords, yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him…

1 Timothy 1:17 Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

1 Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Messiah Yeshua,

So, if this has been the historical understanding of the nature of God as being singular, how is it that over the centuries after Messiah, a concept known as the trinity came about? The philosophy of a trinity suggests that the being we call “God” is a singular entity made up of three “persons”: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. In this view, all three have co-existed for all eternity, and all are co-equal with one another and somehow combine to form one God. This very abstract and confusing definition of God’s essence is generally defended by saying that the nature of God is incomprehensible to our human understanding.

While I would agree that God’s ways can be incomprehensible to us as humans, we always need to focus on what the Bible actually reveals about God, not invent how we think God should be, and then try to fit that idea back into the Bible. This involves reading what the Bible says about God, doing our best to understand the literary, cultural, and historical context, and then lining up our ideas with the consistent patterns found throughout Scripture. Therefore, I have come to believe that the concept of a trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as one God with three eternal persons) is a philosophical misinterpretation of men that was devised hundreds of years after the close of the inspired record of God’s dealings with the Israelite people.

Now, before you write me off as a cultist or assign to me some other unfounded judgment, please consider something very basic about what I am presenting here. One of the most glaring demonstrations of how the concept of the trinity is a tradition invented by men is that it was not even an “official” doctrine of Christianity until approximately three to four hundred years after Messiah lived. Prior to the time of its acceptance, there are only sparse references among a few of what we know as the “church fathers” to a vague trinitarian formula that was to become more firmly defined at this later time.

Three to four hundred years is a longer period of time than it has been for us Americans since the revolutionary war. So if that’s the case, what were the masses of Christians believing about God for all of that time, since they never even heard of a trinity concept? Unfortunately, the early leaders of that time were approaching the idea of God from thinking that was based on Greek philosophy, and not from the Hebraic cultural and historical perspective of the Bible.

To refine this man-made definition of the trinity, many councils were held in the fourth century because there was no firm understanding of this view among the various groups of early Christian leaders. And the establishment of this view was not immediate; it was only after hundreds of years beyond this point that it ultimately spread to become the “orthodox” (established and approved) view, yet it still continued to be refined through further councils, even into the middle ages. All of this debate and definition over such a long period of time does not lead one to conclude this is a clearly revealed truth in the Bible, but rather a manufactured idea of men trying to explain God from a human point of view, the very thing God says is impossible.

Isaiah 55:8-9 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.”

Today, the concept of the trinity is so widely accepted it is considered a non-negotiable core doctrine of Christianity. In almost all Christian churches, if one does not accept this view, one is not considered a Christian. However, reviewing the history of debates over the doctrine it is clear that the trinity is not a self-evident concept in the Bible. 

Based on the Hebrew culture and beliefs from which the Bible came forth, the trinity is not only inconsistent, but in direct contradiction with the Hebraic understanding of God being one, as evidenced through the importance and constant recitation of the Shema. The Hebrew understanding of the nature of God has always held to the absolute oneness or unity of God, with no plurality in essence in any way.

Another correlation, at least culturally, is the fact that the other major Abrahamic religion, Islam, also attests to the absolute oneness of God (Allah). According to their own writings, this simple monotheism is the most important creedal belief in Islam. To be clear, I am not here endorsing or validating Islam; I simply mention it to highlight the fact that both of the religions springing from Abrahamic lineage, Judaism and Islam, have this uncompromising view of absolute and singular monotheism which to me is a testament to its historical authenticity. Only Christianity (and only hundreds of years after the fact, so to speak) has claimed a combination of monotheism and plurality, something that differs from the cultural bedrock of these original, near-eastern traditions. The monotheism of Abraham should be the view of those who claim to be Abraham’s sons, a discussion we will have in a future episode.

The trinity was not a concept of God maintained by any ancient Hebrews throughout their recorded history, including the disciples and Yeshua himself. If it was that important of a doctrine between orthodoxy and heresy, then I believe Yeshua would have taught it clearly so that there would not need to be multiple councils over hundreds of years later to define it.

Now that I have stated my initial disagreement with the trinitarian view, I would like to provide some insight into a little-known aspect of Jewish culture that, to my way of thinking, is a much simpler way of understanding the person and work of Yeshua and the nature of Yahweh God. It pulls together and reinforces other passages throughout the Bible helping us to approximate how the ancient Hebrew mindset would most readily have understood these passages that have led to trinitarian thinking.

The passages that cause confusion about the nature of God can be explained in other ways that fit better with the overall context, patterns, and message of the Bible. When reading English versions of ancient semitic documents with our Western mindset and making declarations of absolutism and orthodoxy, we are drifting into areas of pride and tradition that may be interfering with our understanding of what the message of the Bible is really all about. Rather, if we can look up from our creeds and councils long enough to expand our understanding of the ancient semitic culture rather than Greek philosophy, we may find some simplified answers to some of the deep questions we are seeking to resolve.

For me, as I began to dive really deeply into the trinitarian traditions, I was refreshed when I discovered something that I had never been taught in my Christian faith that I’d like to share with you now. It is an ancient cultural concept which the Hebrews labeled as shaliach in Hebrew; in English, we would call it the concept of agency, or one who is sent.

Agency is the historical near-eastern concept that a designated agent is fully vested with the authority of the one who sent them, to the extent that the agent is considered equivalent to the sender. This was a common understanding in the ancient societies of the near east represented in writings that have survived down to our present age. In fact, we see something similar in our culture today in the legal realm. Some modern examples of this would be:

  • A real estate agent represents a buyer or seller as if they were that person themselves
  • A sales agent represents the interests of a company towards buyers
  • A police officer is an agent of the law allowing him to enforce it
  • A lawyer is an agent of the person they represent in court

In a similar way, a misunderstanding of this concept of agency has led to belief in Yeshua as being God himself, when Yeshua explained time and time again he was God’s designated agent, sent by God. 

While there are many biblical examples of this concept, a few of the more familiar examples of agency can be illustrated with the stories of Joseph, Moses, and then also with Yeshua.

Joseph as an agent of Pharaoh

Genesis 41:39-44 So Pharaoh said to Joseph, “Since God has informed you of all this, there is no one so discerning and wise as you are. “You shall be over my house, and according to your command all my people shall do homage; only in the throne I will be greater than you.” Pharaoh said to Joseph, “See, I have set you over all the land of Egypt.” Then Pharaoh took off his signet ring from his hand and put it on Joseph’s hand and clothed him in garments of fine linen and put the gold necklace around his neck. He had him ride in his second chariot; and they proclaimed before him, “Bow the knee!” And he set him over all the land of Egypt. Moreover, Pharaoh said to Joseph, “[Though] I am Pharaoh, yet without your permission no one shall raise his hand or foot in all the land of Egypt.”

Genesis 44:18 Then Judah approached him, and said, “Oh my lord, may your servant please speak a word in my lord’s ears, and do not be angry with your servant; for you are equal to Pharaoh.

Moses as God’s agent

Exodus 3:10 “Therefore, come now, and I will send you to Pharaoh, so that you may bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt.”

Exodus 7:1 Then Yahweh said to Moses, “See, I make you [as] God to Pharaoh, and your brother Aaron shall be your prophet.

God’s son as the agent of God

John 12:49 “For I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak.”

John 5:22-23 “For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son, so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.”

John 14:8-9 Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” Yeshua 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’?

So we can see this concept of agency and full representation comes from the culture of the Bible itself, and aligns with the patterns, principles, and standards of torah while enriching our understanding of these, and many other, passages. By contrast, the trinity is a foreign and unnatural concept to the biblical culture, and causes division over man-made philosophical definitions in order to essentially shoe-horn it into scriptural passages.

In my view, how most run-of-the-mill Christians, not theologians, view the trinity being one God is actually a type of practical modalism. I guess I should say, this is how it worked for me since I was raised within the trinitarian tradition. Modalism is the belief that there is only one God who has revealed himself in different ways called modes, faces, or aspects. He has represented himself throughout most of the Bible as Yahweh, but he has also revealed himself as Jesus, and sometimes he appears as the Spirit. Modalism says this is not three different “persons,” just three different ways the one God has revealed himself. I say that this is a type of practical modalism, because this is how a trinitarian belief shakes out in practice; there can only typically be an emphasis on God as the Father, God as the Son, or God as the Spirit at any one time.

However, when viewed through the lens of the historical Hebrew culture, these kinds of distinctions are not necessary. Is it challenging to untangle some of these entrenched views? Absolutely, but it is not impossible. Once I began to see and understand the message of the entire Bible as a cohesive whole, the overwhelming message of the Bible through its literary, cultural and historical basis is that there is only one true God, Yahweh, the Father, God Almighty, the Creator of all, and that he alone is the ultimate authority or King over all.

2 Kings 19:15 Hezekiah prayed before Yahweh and said, “O Yahweh, the God of Israel, who are enthroned above the cherubim, You are the God, You alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth. You have made heaven and earth.

I know at this point, many of you who have been brought up in the trinitarian tradition will call to mind specific verses that are said to attest to Yeshua’s divinity. That’s understandable, but please know that I would not make a claim against the trinitarian view without having looked at all of the evidence closely. Remember, I was raised with a trinitarian world view, so I totally understand how these types of arguments that I am providing here can appear jaded, or even heretical. I was brought up to believe that if you didn’t believe in the trinity, you were most likely involved in some sort of cult. I can assure you I do not claim allegiance to any one organization or denomination, and I seek to rely only on what I believe God has brought to my attention within his Word.


  • I believe the Bible teaches there is only one true God. He is known as Yahweh, Almighty God, and the Father, among other names.
  • The Shema of Judaism practiced to this day is the echo of the monotheism of Abraham which was even validated by Yeshua himself. This concept of only one God separates a biblical worldview from most of the other world religions besides Judaism and Islam, demonstrating how the Abrahamic tradition was unique in its day.
  • I believe that the trinitarian view was a forced philosophical imposition on the revelation of God within his torah, or his Word, that took centuries to be established and accepted by the Christian people. Instead, the Hebrew concept of shaliach or agency more clearly represents the relationship of Yeshua with his Father, and is reinforced by other similar Bible passages involving Joseph, Moses and Pharoah.
  • In essence, I believe the Bible reveals that the holy Spirit is represented as the life-giving influence of Yahweh God himself, and in the New Testament Yeshua is clearly identified as the divinely born son of God, not God himself.
  • The nature of God is essential to understanding the core principles of the Bible which we discuss here each week, as his Kingdom, the primary emphasis of the whole Bible, is based upon the fact that Yahweh God is the ultimate King over all.

I’m sure that what I have mentioned here raises lots of questions and objections among those of you who have also been taught about the trinitarian world view. While I cannot address every trinitarian verse in the course of these podcasts, I will provide some resources in the show notes for those who would like to look more deeply into specific texts and verses that other, more scholarly folks than me have analyzed so they can draw their own conclusions. For what it’s worth, I do promise we will look more closely at what I believe the Bible reveals about Yeshua (and also the holy Spirit) in the next few upcoming podcasts. Hopefully some of those discussions will also provide you some further insights into my thinking about the nature of God. So, if you feel differently about this topic, I encourage you to continue to hear me out through those discussions, as well.

And I leave you today with one final verse that I believe encapsulates what I’ve tried with the best of my ability to express here today:

John 17:3 – [Yeshua speaking] “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Yeshua Messiah whom You have sent.”

Other helpful sites and resources regarding monotheism of the whole Bible:

Trinity Delusion |

What is a Biblical Monotarian – The Biblical Monotarian (Copyright 2023)

Why Biblical Unitarianism? |

Trinities – Theories about the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

The UCA Affirmation – Unitarian Christian Alliance

Remember, there is a Core of the Bible virtual study group that is hosted through the Marco Polo video chat app. It is designed to discuss the topics that we cover each week and to help people with responses to questions that may come up. If you are interested in joining the discussion, simply download the free Marco Polo app and email me a request to join the group at I will be happy to send you a link to join the virtual Bible study group. You can also feel free to email me any of your thoughts or comments there, as well.

Faith in the God of the growing kingdom

Believers by their very existence demonstrate the truth of the Bible: that God’s kingdom will rule the earth.

Believers by their very existence demonstrate the truth of the Bible: that God’s kingdom will rule the earth.

Psalm 96:10, 12-13 – “Say among the nations: ‘Yahweh reigns.’ The world is firmly established; it cannot be shaken. He judges the peoples fairly. … Let the field and all that is in it exult. Then all the trees of the woods shall sing for joy before Yahweh, for he has come, for he has come to judge the earth. He judges the world in righteousness, And the peoples in His faithfulness!”

The entirety of this psalm in the totality of its context is speaking of the fulfillment of God’s rule over the entire earth. The psalmist, writing hundreds of years before Messiah, is speaking of the rule of God as even then being present over the entire earth.

However, some commentators view this only as a future time when Messiah returns and will judge all nations. In fact, they view this entire psalm as being descriptive of the messianic kingdom, a point with which I would not disagree. Where I would diverge from these commentaries would be regarding when this kingdom and when the rule of Yahweh over the entire earth is in place. They might place this in the future; I would place it in the present. In fact, from my perspective, I would view this psalm as being indicative of the eternal reign of Yahweh over the entire earth, from the ancient past, through the times of Israel and into the current Messianic kingdom, and further still out into our future. How can this be?

As Creator of all that is, Yahweh has always ruled over the entire earth, whether people have recognized his reign or not. In like fashion, he currently reigns over the entire world whether people recognize his reign or not. The difference in our current age is that Messiah has enabled all people to enter the kingdom of God through the representative sacrifice of himself. As God’s designated agent, he has delivered all people to the rulership of the father, Yahweh. As the Administrator and Mediator of this kingdom, he now rules at the Father’s right hand and represents the God-designated judgment of the Father. This was brought out in John’s gospel:

John 5:22-23 – Furthermore, the Father judges no one, but has assigned all judgment to the Son, so that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.

But this judgment is already in place, even while Yeshua walked the earth. It is not something just relegated to the future, as Yeshua explained to Nicodemus.

John 3:18: “He who believes in him [i.e., the Son] is not judged. He who doesn’t believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God. “

Having faith in the Messiah is a demonstration in the truth of Yahweh. Believing in Yeshua shows that one has accepted the light that Yahweh has sent into the world. When one believes in Yeshua, there is a recognition of Yahweh God as the Creator and the kingdom of God being present in the world here and now with Messiah as Lord. The continuation of this process with every new believer is the growing of the kingdom until it fills the earth and Yahweh is “all in all.”

1 Corinthians 15:28 – When everything is subject to [the Lordship of] Messiah, then the Son himself will also be subject to the one who subjected everything to him, so that God may be all in all.

Then the fullness of Psalm 96 will come to pass, then all nations will honor and worship the one God of the universe, Yahweh, and his kingdom will be firmly established upon all the earth.

If you enjoy these daily blog posts, be sure to visit the growing archive of the Core of the Bible podcast. Each week we take a more in-depth look at one of the various topics presented in the daily blog. You can view the podcast archive on our Podcast Page, at Core of the Bible on Simplecast, or your favorite podcast streaming service.

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