Kenneth Greatorex

The writings of Kenneth B. Greatorex

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JESUS - Call Him Lord or God?
Kenneth Greatorex

There is a popular tune heard these days that has scriptural lines in it about “every knee bowing” and “every tongue confessing.” BUT, what they are confessing is what bothers me. Is it right and correct to confess Jesus as God? Now, this topic is not about the deity of Jesus, which was laid aside when took on human form, as he didn’t function as God while on earth, which has been previously written about.

There is something precious in acknowledging the Lordship of Jesus Christ that seems to be overlooked by some. Perhaps my feelings are based upon my personal history as outlined in the email conversations below between me and John Gavazzoni which began with a discussion of Trinitarianism verses Oneness. There are strong, in some cases almost fanatical, believers on both sides of this issue with scripture to prove conclusively the correctness of one’s belief. However, this article is about Jesus Christ our Lord.

In response to and email that John had written I replied: “Perhaps my perceptions are off, but it seems to me that in Canada one hears the Term "Lord" with reference to Jesus and God much more often than in your fair land, where "God" seems more prevalent.” End of quote.

In his reply John mentioned: “I had some discussion with a fellow UR believer down here re: a movement away from the emphasis of Jesus as Lord within a very ecumenically-minded universalist association, and his comment to me was that he was prone to avoid that description of the Jesus, since it smacked of feudalism.“ End of quote.

My reply to the word “feudalism” was a bit judgmental I must admit, however, this is what I said: “This man's thinking that "Lord" is "feudalism" is shocking and ignorant, as I see it. While it is "at (correctly "IN" I believe) the name that the Name JESUS, a mighty name indeed, according to Philippians the confession is that, "Jesus Christ is LORD!"

“This reminds me of a chorus I have heard a few times over that past few years, that speaks of "every knee bowing & tongue confessing" BUT not to acknowledge the Lordship of Jesus Christ, but that he was/is God. This destroys the value of the truth therein. “While on this topic, I recall that in Pentecost we had a peppy version of the chorus, "He is Lord" which became a worship chorus during the early years of the Charismatic revival. At one service at we were singing “He is Lord” several times, one of our daughters caught on to the meaning and began to weep.” End of quote.

John being such an agreeable fellow replied back: “Your thoughts are much on the same line as mine on the subject Kenneth. The bowing of every knee, and the confession of every tongue in/at the name of Jesus speaks to me that salvation lies in the surrender to, and acknowlegment of the Divine Humanity of our Lord in/through His human experience, "Jesus," being the human name given Him for His earthly pilgrimage, coupled with its essential meaning of "Yahweh saves."

“God saves us, as one with us in our humanity: "One mediator.......the Man, Christ Jesus." John went on to add, “that one might begin an article about Barack Obama, the President of the US, and further on simply refer to "the President." My reply was: “Your illustration of the president, who was always and remains Barack Obama, as now being known as Mr. President, is excellent. Of course he remains Barack Obama, but his function is that of President, even as the function of Jesus was as "The Messiah" - the Anointed One, whom the Father, upon his ascension, called Lord as he took on the role of his Father.” End of quote.

Acts 2:34 quotes Psalm 110:1 with, "`The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at My right hand.” (Weymouth) We have a co-lordship here of our Father and Jesus Christ. This is in accord with the declaration of Philippians 2:9-11. “For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at (Literally IN) the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that JESUS CHRIST is LORD, to the glory of God the Father.” NASU

Please notice that the confession is: “Jesus Christ is LORD!” The issue of importance is not Godship, but LORDSHIP. This is about the man Christ Jesus, who had set aside his deity, and who upon successful completion of his assignment was exalted to the “right hand” of his and our Father where in Acts 2:36 is stated, “God has made Him both LORD and Christ — this Jesus whom you crucified." NASU

In closing, I want to mention that there are more than 40 New Testament references where Jesus is referred to as the “son of God,” but not God. There are more than 60 references where he is called, “LORD Jesus Christ.” From Mark to Revelation Jesus is referenced as “LORD Jesus” more than 100 times. However, I failed to find any, perhaps I missed it, where Jesus is directly called, or to be called God.

Let us worship and CONFESS openly and joyfully our acknowledgement that Jesus as LORD, as in time all knees will bow and all tongues joyfully confess that Jesus Christ is LORD to the glory of God the Father

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