Muslims often claim, “Isa never said He was God!” In fact, it is one of the most popular comments Isa and Islam receives. The Quran says, “The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a Messenger…” (Qs 5:75). Many people reading the Bible today would agree with this statement. But the Jews in Isa’s day killed Him for claiming to be God!
Isa Al-Masih’s Early Ministry
Isa’s ministry began in Nazareth. It was the town where he grew up. There, Isa often went to the synagogue. He taught those who met there. One day, he read a passage from the prophet Isaiah: “The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is upon me, for the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the LORD’s favor has come, …” (Prophet Isaiah 61:1-2). This was a well-known passage, a prophesy of the Messiah. After reading this, Isa declared, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing” (Injil, Luke 4:18-21).
Hearing this, the townspeople forced Isa out of the synagogue to a cliff. They tried to push him off it. Somehow, Isa escaped them. Why did they do this? Because Isa was declaring to be God!
Isa Al-Masih’s Eternal Claim
Almost every day, Isa interacted with the Jewish leaders. They constantly tried to catch Him breaking “the Law.” One day, they were arguing about what they should and should not do because Abraham was their “father” (Injil, John 8:34-59).
Isa told the Jews, “‘Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.’ ‘You are not yet fifty years old’ they said to him, ‘and you have seen Abraham!’ ‘Very truly I tell you,’ Jesus answered, ‘before Abraham was born, I am!’ At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, …” (Injil, John 8:56-59).
Isa claimed to be eternal. Only God is eternal! Isa also used the name God had given to Moses for Himself, “I Am,” which the Jewish leaders would have known (Taurat, Exodus 3:14). Jesus was calling himself God! They were very angry and tried to kill Him. “We are … stoning you … for blasphemy, because you … claim to be God” (Injil, John 10:33).
Why Was Isa Al-Masih Killed?
Isa Al-Masih was sentenced to death because He claimed to be God! “…Again the high priest asked him, ‘Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?’ ‘I am,’ said Jesus. … The high priest tore his clothes. ‘Why do we need any more witnesses?’ He asked. ‘You have heard the blasphemy…’ They all condemned him as worthy of death…” (Mark 14:61-64).
Isa could have escaped his death by saying He wasn’t God. Why would He say He was God if He wasn’t? Especially if it would have kept Him from being killed?
Because Isa was God, He lived a perfect life, and He died as the Perfect and Ultimate Sacrifice. Have you accepted Isa’s sacrifice?
[We invite you to visit us at https://www.isaandislam.com/way-of-salvation to learn more about God’s gift of Salvation. God loves you and waits to hear from you. Isa clearly said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (Injil, John 14:6). For a deeper understanding of Isa we suggest you subscribe to “Isa, Islam, and Al-Fatiha” at this link.]
Questions to Respond to in the Comment Section:
The Staff at Isa and Islam invites your comments. In order to improve the discussion (comment section below), we will need to delete all comments that don’t specifically relate to the article and/or the questions. We very much welcome and appreciate your feedback on this article.
1. How did people react when Isa said He was God? Why?
2. God declared that Isa was His Son. Why didn’t He speak in this way about any other prophet?
3. Why was Isa sentenced to death?