Was Messiah worshiped as the Father in the New Testament?

Messiah    I’ve heard your Ministry state that the Messiah should not be worshiped like the Father. There are several examples in the New Testament where the Messiah was worshiped, e.g. Matthew 2:11; 8:2; 9:19; 14:33. Doesn’t this show that He was worshiped as the Father and that He and the Father share an equality? After all, the Bible confirms that the Father and Son are “one” and that the Messiah sits on the Father’s right hand.

 

Messiah    We at YRM make a distinction between the Father and Son. While we recognize that Yahshua was “worshipped” in the New Testament, we do not believe these examples confirm that the Son was worshiped in the same manner as the Father is worshiped.

The word “worshipped” in the New Testament comes from the Greek proskuneo. Strong’s defines this word as, “…meaning to kiss, like a dog licking his master’s hand); to fawn or crouch to, i.e. (literally or figuratively) prostrate oneself in homage (do reverence to, adore).” Thayer’s Greek Lexicon states, “…in the New Testament by kneeling or prostration to do homage (to one) or make obeisance, whether in order to express respect or to make supplication; used of homage shown to men and beings of superior rank.” This word refers to prostration, as we most often show to Yahweh, and also to reverence or respect, as we would show to those of superior rank, including to Yahshua the Messiah. The first definition applies to Yahweh and the second to Yahshua. Formal worship was always directed to the Father. Even Yahshua directed honor first to the Father. He went so far as to say that no man was good, but only the Father, Luke 18:19. For example, in Matthew 2:2 the wise men were not there to worship a ‘deity,’ but the King of the Jews. Regarding the wise men bowing down before Yahshua in Matthew 2:11, this was a common practice for earthly kings and other positions of authority.

In reference to your statement about the Father and Son being “one,” this simply implies that they share the same core values, attributes, and characteristics. However, this does not make them one or equal in authority. As Paul confirms in 1Corinthians 11:3, even after Yahshua’s resurrection and ascension, the Father was still greater than the Son: “But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Messiah; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Messiah is Yahweh.”

In summary, while Yahshua was worshiped, i.e., reverenced, in the New Testament, it would be improper to state that He was worshiped on the same level or in the same manner as the Father.

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Posted in Trinity, Oneness, and Pre-existence, Q&A - Trinity - Oneness.

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