Shalom! My name is Adam Pastor

Welcome to ADONI MESSIAH which means
"My Lord Messiah" -
a fitting epithet to who Jesus (or Yeshua) is!

Here, I attempt to present the Apostolic Truths according to the Scriptures, that there is
One GOD, the Father, namely, YAHWEH,
and One Lord, GOD's only begotten Son,
Yeshua the Messiah.

And that one day YAHWEH will send His Son back to Earth to inaugurate the Everlasting Kingdom of GOD


Sunday, December 17, 2006

The Worship of Christ

A couple of years ago, I was asked about the 'worship' of Christ on another forum. This was my reply ...

Greetings ...,
allow me to elaborate on 'worship' and its distinctions.

Theologians call it, 'religious worship' (which is due to GOD alone)
and 'civil worship' (which is due to men such as dignitaries and kings).
The Scriptures describe both kinds of 'worship'.

The Hebrew word for worship, shachah - Strong's 7812, is used more often in the OT (the Hebrew Bible), in regards to men, than it is used in regards to Almighty GOD!! The KJV/Bible translators obscured this fact by translating this word as
bow down, fall down, make obeisance, do obeisance, do reverence, etc.
However, the main thing to notice, is that this kind of 'worship' does not violate the commandments which speak of the worship which is due to Almighty GOD alone. Why? Because when men are shachah-worshipped in the OT, they are not being worshipped AS Almighty GOD! They are shachah-worshipped for who they are and for what (or who) they represent. Hence men of GOD, patriarchs, prophets and kings, (even parents and siblings), were given due worship/reverence accordingly ... it is obvious, however, that these men were not being shachah-worshipped AS Almighty GOD!

The kings of Israel/Judah of the OT, were the anointed ones of GOD, GOD's appointed kings; they were royalty, they were therefore, given due worship/obeisance. This 'kind of (civil) worship' is still witnessed today in countries which still have royal families. From what I gathered, the English call it 'curtsy'; and they also refer to their 'mayor' as 'the Right Worshipful'!
In contrast, in biblical times, it was the norm to fall flat on one's face, when greeting a dignitary or king.

The NT equivalent word for worship is proskuneo - Strong's 4352. When Jesus gave the parable about forgiveness concerning a certain king [Matt 18:23], he described how the servant proskuneo-worshipped the king [v. 26]; whilst in contrast, the servant's fellowservant simply besought him! [v. 29] The difference being, the servant was no king! Even in the regeneration when the saints are glorified, the enemies of the saints will have to proskuneo-worship before their feet. [Rev 3:9] The implications should be clear!

The OT, therefore, gives us the necessary backdrop of the NT. When we search the Scriptures (as commanded by our Master Rabbi/Teacher Jesus), we can now see why Jesus of Nazareth was proskuneo-worshipped. Just like the patriarchs, prophets, dignitaries and kings of old, Jesus of Nazareth was given due worship/reverence.
Why? Because Jesus of Nazareth is

  • the promised Prophet par excellence of Deut 18:15,18-19;
  • the promised King of Psalms 2; the promised
    'Son of GOD/David'
    of 2 Sam 7:14, 1 Chron. 17:11-14;
  • the promised David's lord of Psalms 110:1.
When recognized as such, he was given due worship/obeisance/shachah/proskuneo as shown throughout the NT.

Some recognized Jesus as the promised 'Son of GOD/David', the King of Israel, the Messiah.
Please note: these terms are synonymous. 'Son of GOD' is equivalent to King of Israel. In biblical times, to claim to be the Son of GOD was to claim to be the King of Israel, the King of the Jews. Hence Nathaniel's statement: (John 1:49) Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.
Solomon was the first king to be conferred the title Son of GOD or GOD's Son (See 1 Chron 22:6-11, 28:5-7).
Son of GOD, therefore, is actually a royal title! - Let me use a quote from Colin Brown,

Colin Brown wrote:
the title "Son of God" is not in itself a designation of personal deity or an expression of metaphysical distinctions within the Godhead. Indeed to be "Son of God" one has to be a being who is not God! It is a designation for a creature indicating a special relationship with God. In particular, it denotes God’s representative, God’s vice-regent. It is a designation of kingship, identifying the king as God’s son.

Being recognized as 'the Son of GOD',
Jesus was proskuneo-worshipped as such
e.g. Matt 14:33, John 9:35-38, etc.
Whilst others, simply recognized him as a mighty Prophet of GOD, and proskuneo-worshipped him as such
e.g. Matt 8:2, 9:18, etc.
(Even the Romans mockingly proskuneo-worshipped him as the 'King of the Jews' - Mark 15:18-19)

By searching the OT, we see that the NT examples are nothing out of the ordinary. The difference being that Jesus of Nazareth is 'the Promised One, the Promised Messiah, the Promised King'.
The Magi from the east came from afar, therefore, to give due worship/reverence and pay homage to the Promised King of Israel hence the Magi's request (Matthew 2:2) Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him; and Herod's reply (Matthew 2:8) And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said, Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

The Magi never came to worship a deity or a 'god-man'. NO! They came to pay homage and give due reverence/worship [Matt 2:11] to GOD's Son, GOD's Anointed One, GOD's Chosen King.
(compare in contrast, Matt 21:37-39, Mark 12:6-8, Luke 20:13-15)

Throughout the NT we see other examples of this reverence. Jesus died because he proclaimed that he was the Messiah, the King of Israel, the promised Son of GOD of Psalms 2. However, to quote

Colin Brown wrote:
The designation of Jesus as "Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead" (Rom. 1:4) is a reaffirmation of that Son-Kingship with divine authority, insofar as by the resurrection the Spirit has overturned the negative verdict of the Sanhedrin in condemning Jesus to death as a blasphemer who sought to lead Israel astray.

Like I said earlier, the OT gives us the necessary backdrop for the NT. So here are some more examples of this kind of worship (The word(s) which correspond to shachah are in red) :-
  • (Genesis 23:7) And Abraham stood up, and bowed himself to the people of the land, even to the children of Heth.
  • (Genesis 23:12) And Abraham bowed down himself before the people of the land.
  • {towards Esau} (Genesis 33:3) And he passed over before them, and bowed himself to the ground seven times, until he came near to his brother.
  • (Genesis 33:6-7) Then the handmaidens came near, they and their children, and they bowed themselves. 7 And Leah also with her children came near, and bowed themselves: and after came Joseph near and Rachel, and they bowed themselves.
  • {towards Joseph} (Genesis 42:6) And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph's brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.
  • (Genesis 43:26) And when Joseph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand into the house, and bowed themselves to him to the earth.
  • (Genesis 43:28 ) And they answered, Thy servant our father is in good health, he is yet alive. And they bowed down their heads, and made obeisance.
  • {towards Moses} (Exodus 11:8 ) And all these thy servants shall come down unto me, and bow down themselves unto me, saying, Get thee out, and all the people that follow thee: and after that I will go out. And he went out from Pharaoh in a great anger.
  • {towards Jethro} (Exodus 18:7) And Moses went out to meet his father in law, and did obeisance, and kissed him; ...
  • (1 Samuel 24:8 ) David also arose afterward, and went out of the cave, and cried after Saul, saying, My lord the king. And when Saul looked behind him, David stooped with his face to the earth, and bowed himself.
  • {towards David} (1 Samuel 25:41) And she arose, and bowed herself on her face to the earth, and said, Behold, let thine handmaid be a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord.
  • (2 Samuel 9:6) Now when Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, was come unto David, he fell on his face, and did reverence. And David said, Mephibosheth. And he answered, Behold thy servant!
  • (2 Samuel 9:8 ) And he bowed himself, and said, What is thy servant, that thou shouldest look upon such a dead dog as I am?
  • (2 Samuel 14:4) And when the woman of Tekoah spake to the king, she fell on her face to the ground, and did obeisance, and said, Help, O king.
  • (2 Samuel 14:22) And Joab fell to the ground on his face, and bowed himself, and thanked the king: ...
  • (2 Samuel 14:33) So Joab came to the king, and told him: and when he had called for Absalom, he came to the king, and bowed himself on his face to the ground before the king: and the king kissed Absalom.
  • {towards Absalom} (2 Samuel 15:5) And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him obeisance, he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him.
  • {towards King David} (2 Samuel 18:28 ) And Ahimaaz called, and said unto the king, All is well. And he fell down to the earth upon his face before the king, and said, Blessed be YAHWEH thy God, which hath delivered up the men that lifted up their hand against my lord the king.
  • (2 Samuel 24:20) And Araunah looked, and saw the king and his servants coming on toward him: and Araunah went out, and bowed himself before the king on his face upon the ground.
  • (1 Kings 1:16) And Bathsheba bowed, and did obeisance unto the king. And the king said, What wouldest thou?
  • (1 Kings 1:23) And they told the king, saying, Behold Nathan the prophet. And when he was come in before the king, he bowed himself before the king with his face to the ground.
  • (1 Kings 1:31) Then Bathsheba bowed with her face to the earth, and did reverence to the king, and said, Let my lord king David live for ever.
  • (1 Kings 1:53) So king Solomon sent, and they brought him down from the altar. And he came and bowed himself to king Solomon: and Solomon said unto him, Go to thine house.
  • (1 Kings 2:19) Bathsheba therefore went unto king Solomon, to speak unto him for Adonijah. And the king rose up to meet her, and bowed himself unto her, and sat down on his throne, and caused a seat to be set for the king's mother; and she sat on his right hand.
  • {towards Elisha} (2 Kings 2:15) And when the sons of the prophets which were to view at Jericho saw him, they said, The spirit of Elijah doth rest on Elisha. And they came to meet him, and bowed themselves to the ground before him.
  • (2 Kings 4:37) Then she went in, and fell at his feet, and bowed herself to the ground, and took up her son, and went out.
  • (1 Chronicles 21:21) And as David came to Ornan, Ornan looked and saw David, and went out of the threshingfloor, and bowed himself to David with his face to the ground.

And the list goes on ...

Therefore in conclusion, let us remember, there is 'worship' which is due unto solely Almighty GOD [e.g. Exo 20:5, Deut 5:19,
Matt 4:10, John 4:20-24, Rev 4:10-11, 19:10, 22:9, etc] and there is 'worship' which is due unto the King Messiah
[e.g. Matt 14:33, 20:20, 28:9, etc].
Compare the worship/shachah of YAHWEH & King David i.e.
(1 Chronicles 29:20) And David said to all the congregation, Now bless YAHWEH your God. And all the congregation blessed YAHWEH God of their fathers, and bowed down their heads, and worshipped YAHWEH, and the king.