In this essay, I intend to flesh out the case that Isaiah 9:6 indeed affirms the divine status of Israel’s Messiah. I will be defending two basic contentions: (1) Isaiah 9:6 is best understood as a text concerning the Messiah, and (2) Isaiah 9:6 identifies the Messiah as a divine person.
John Walvoord (1910-2002) was a past president of Dallas Theological Seminary (1952-1986) and a prolific author. He was probably best known for his advocacy of dispensational theology and of pre-tribulation ‘rapture’ theology with respect to eschatology. In his book, Jesus Christ Our Lord, Walvoord offers a systematic presentation of the person and work of Jesus Christ.
Ehrman published two blog posts, claiming that the idea that Jesus is Himself Yahweh is a recent doctrinal innovation, completely foreign to the New Testament and the ancient church. Ehrman even goes so far as to say that this is the view of only “some conservative evangelical Christians” and that “I’ve never even heard the claim (let alone a discussion of it) until very recently.”
Paul had, at the time of his writing, never visited the Roman church in person (Rom 1:13; 15:22-29). He thus expands his salutation so as to include a creedal summary of the gospel and his apostolic calling. Presumably Paul’s intent here was to establish credibility with the recipients of his letter, whom he had not yet met with in person.
Some may wonder why I have chosen to address this topic prior to engaging with other topics (such as the meaning of the ‘days’ in Genesis 1). I have done so because many young earth creationists consider this to be the more pressing concern, and perhaps even the strongest argument for their position from Scripture.
In my judgment, what matters with an apologetic system is primarily its adherence to sound principles of reason and secondarily its persuasiveness. Arguments that are unsound can be persuasive to the uninitiated, and the apologist must resist the temptation to compromise his intellectual integrity by forsaking sound principles of reason for the sake of effectiveness.
Chou’s book is a thoughtful contribution to the discussion of the New Testament use of the Old Testament, which commands attention from those who would dismiss the New Testament authors as taking passages from the Hebrew Bible out of their original context and contorting their meaning to confirm their Christian bias.