Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

The 2nd “Chris Green vs. Paul Bilal Williams” Debate

A Brief Reply

Sam Shamoun

Leading Christophobe and taqiyyist Paul Bilal Williams had a second debate with Reverend Chris Green on the topic, “Jesus: God or Prophet?”.

Williams repeated the same arguments and distortions that we have answered time and time again ad nauseam ad infinitum, all of which can be accessed here.

Yet there are a few things that Williams said which we would like to address briefly, in order to further document the fact that this dawagandist has no concern for truth and consistency. His aim is to only mislead people by raising objections that he himself knows have been thoroughly refuted, and which he is fully aware can and have been used more forcefully against him to discredit Islam and prove that Muhammad was a false prophet.

Williams repeated his claim that the Apostle Paul taught that God is immortal in order to prove that Jesus cannot be God:

“Now, although I don’t intend to dwell this evening on what the later figure called St. Paul taught about Jesus, as he never met Jesus of Nazareth during his life, it is worth noting that even he clearly stated that God alone possesses immortality. This is a quote from 1 Timothy: ‘God who is the blessed and only sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords. It is he alone who has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.’ Immortal means God does not die. Therefore, anyone who believes Jesus died cannot believe that Jesus is God. Such a belief would contradict what Paul says here. Furthermore, to say that God died would is a blasphemy against God. Who would run the world if God died? So Paul believed that God does not die. Paul also said in the passage that I just read that God dwells in unapproachable light, that no one has seen God or can see God. Paul knew that many people had seen Jesus, yet Paul can say that no one has seen God because Paul was sure that Jesus was not God.”

In the first place, Williams’ question concerning who would be running the world if God died assumes that death means cessation of life, that the person who dies no longer consciously exists. This definition is not only contrary to how the Holy Bible defines death, it even contradicts what the Islamic sources say concerning this issue. More on this point shortly.

Second, the Apostle Paul proclaims that Jesus is the Creator and Sustainer of all things that have been made, and the One who has redeemed and reconciled creation to God by his sacrificial death on the cross:

“He has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son He loves. We have redemption, the forgiveness of sins, in Him. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For everything was created by Him, in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. He IS before all things, AND BY HIM ALL THINGS HOLD TOGETHER. He is also the head of the body, the church; He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He might come to have first place in everything. For God was pleased to have all His fullness dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile everything to Himself by making peace through the blood of His cross—whether things on earth or things in heaven.” Colossians 1:13-20

The blessed Apostle even testified that Jesus possesses the whole essence of God fully and perfectly:

For the ENTIRE FULLNESS of God’s nature (theotetos – that which makes God what he is) dwells bodily in Christ, and you have been filled by Him, who is the head over every ruler and authority.” Colossians 2:9-10

What this means is that Paul saw nothing incompatible with Jesus being God, and possessing all of the essential attributes of Deity such as immortality, and his dying on the cross for our sins. He knew that Jesus’ death didn’t mean that Christ ceased to exist, that he ceased being immortal, but was aware that Jesus was still consciously sustaining the entire creation even as his body lay in the grave. After all, Paul’s statements show that Christ didn’t start sustaining the creation after his resurrection, but has been sustaining it from the moment he created it, from the very start of creation. As such, Jesus has never stopped for a moment in sustaining all things.

Nor was Paul alone in holding this position:

“Long ago God spoke to the fathers by the prophets at different times and indifferent ways. In these last days, He has spoken to us by His Son. God has appointed Him heir of all things and made the universe through Him. The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact imprint of His nature, sustaining all things BY HIS POWERFUL WORD. After making purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high…When He again brings His firstborn into the world, He says, And all God’s angels must worship Him. And about the angels He says: He makes His angels winds, and His servants a fiery flame, but to the Son: Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, and the scepter of Your kingdom is a scepter of justice. You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; this is why God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of joy rather than Your companions. And: In the beginning, Lord [the Son], YOU ESTABLISHED THE EARTH, and the heavens ARE THE WORKS OF YOUR HANDS; they will perish, BUT YOU REMAIN. They will all wear out like clothing; YOU WILL ROLL THEM UP LIKE A CLOAK, and they will be changed like a robe. BUT YOU ARE THE SAME, AND YOUR YEARS WILL NEVER END.” Hebrews 1:1-3, 6-12

Here is another inspired author who testifies that Jesus is the Agent of creation who sustains all things by his powerful word, while still believing that Christ died in order to make purification for sins.

In fact, the language which the writer uses to depict Christ as the Creator and Sustainer of creation is that which both the Hebrew Bible and non-canonical Jewish writings employ to describe God alone.

For instance, it is God who created and sustains all things all by himself, since the heavens and the earth are the work of his own hands:

You alone are Yahweh. You created the heavens, the highest heavens with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to all of them, and the heavenly host worships You.” Nehemiah 9:6

“This is what God, Yahweh, says—who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people on it and life to those who walk on it—” Isaiah 42:5

“This is what Yahweh, your Redeemer who formed you from the womb, says: I am Yahweh, who made everything; who stretched out the heavens BY MYSELF; who ALONE spread out the earth;” Isaiah 44:24

I made the earth, and created man on it. It was My hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host.… For this is what Yahweh says—God is the Creator of the heavens. He formed the earth and made it. He established it; He did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited—‘I am Yahweh, and there is no other.’” Isaiah 45:12, 18

My own hand founded the earth, and My right hand spread out the heavens; when I summoned them, they stood up together.” Isaiah 48:13

God is also the One who sustains all things by his word:

“Because of him his messenger finds the way, and by HIS WORD all things hold together.” Sirach 43:26

Thus, to portray Christ as the Creator and Sustainer of all things is to basically identify him as Yahweh God.

This explains why the author of Hebrews took the following Psalm, which describes Yahweh as the unchangeable Creator and Sustainer, and applied it to Christ himself!

“I say: ‘My God, do not take me in the middle of my life! Your years continue through all generations. Long ago You established the earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You will endure; all of them will wear out like clothing. You will change them like a garment, and they will pass away. But You are the same, and Your years will never end.’” Psalm 102:24-27

What this shows is that Paul and the other inspired writers had absolutely no problem with Christ being God and with his dying on the cross, since they could see that Jesus was still actively sustaining creation even during the time that his body lay in the tomb.

In fact, Jesus himself says in John’s Gospel that he was going to personally raise himself from the dead on the third day:

“Jesus answered, ‘Destroy this sanctuary, AND I WILL RAISE IT UP in three days.’ Therefore the Jews said, ‘This sanctuary took 46 years to build, AND WILL YOU RAISE IT UP in three days?’ But He was speaking about the sanctuary of His body. So when He was raised from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this. And they believed the Scripture and the statement Jesus had made.” John 2:19-22

“This is why the Father loves Me, because I am laying down My life so I may take it up again. NO ONE TAKES IT FROM ME, but I lay it down on My own. I have the right to lay it down, and I have the right to take it up again. I have received this command from My Father.” John 10:17-18

Now the only way the Lord Jesus could do this is if he was still consciously alive and sustaining the entire creation during the three days that his body lay in the grave.

And just in case Williams tries to object to the fact that Paul believed that Jesus is Yahweh God Incarnate, we will simply quote the words of a liberal scholar that he himself praises and whose book he was rather giddy about receiving (*; *; *):

“As we saw in the previous chapter, Paul says that it was Christ, and not the human Jesus, who existed from the beginning of creation in the ‘form of God’ but then subsequently emptied himself, being born in the likeness of a mortal human being (Philippians 2:6-7). Paul makes the rather startling assertion that this cosmic Christ, ages before he was born as a human being, HAD MANIFESTED HIMSELF AS YAHWEH, THE GOD OF ISRAEL. He refers particularly to the time of Moses, when the Israelites ‘saw’ Yahweh as a mysterious cloud-fire: ‘And Yahweh went before them by day in a pillar of cloud, to lead them the way, and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light, that they might go by day and by night’ (Exodus 13:21).

Paul says that the God who led the Israelites through the Red Sea and in their desert wanderings for forty years, the one they called the Rock, WAS CHRIST (1 Corinthians 10:4; Deuteronomy 32:4, 18). He does not explain the particulars of his view, but the idea that there was AN ‘UPPER’ YAHWEH, who remains unseen, sometimes called ‘God called Most High,’ as well as A ‘LOWER’ MANIFESTATION OF THAT SAME GOD, CALLED THE ‘MESSENGER YAHWEH,’ who appears from time to time in human history in a visible manner on earth, WAS COMMON IN VARIOUS FORMS OF JUDAISM OF PAUL’S TIME. This lower Yahweh is not flesh and blood, even though in some of the stories he seems to ‘materialize,’ but when he appears he is then ‘taken up’ or in one case disappears in a flame of fire.

“This is very much akin to the Greek notion of the ineffable God manifest in the lower world as the ‘Word’ or Logos, which was an integral part of Platonic and Stoic cosmology. The Logos idea was appropriated by the Jewish philosopher Philo, a contemporary of Paul, to deal with passages in the Hebrew Bible THAT SEEM TO REFER TO TWO YAHWEHS, AN UPPER AND A LOWER. In the New Testament the Gospel of John adopts the Logos idea wholesale, but makes the shocking assertion that ‘the Logos became flesh,’ referring to the birth of Jesus (John 1:1, 14). This is akin to Paul’s view of the preexistent Christ. In the form of God, who emptied himself and was born of a woman.

“Paul says little more about the preexistent Christ as a manifestation of Yahweh other than that he was present in the days of Moses. Paul is focused entirely on the other end of history, the termination of what he calls ‘this present evil age’ (Galatians 1:14 [sic]). What Jesus represents to Paul is one thing and one thing only–the cosmic, preexistent Christ, being ‘born of a woman,’ as a flesh-and-blood mortal human being now transformed to a life-giving Spirit. This is what drove Paul and excited him most. For him it explained the Genesis creation itself and accounted for all the subsequent ‘blood, sweat, and tears’ of the human story. Humans were created to become Gods! ‘This slight, momentary affliction’ was preparing them for an ‘eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison’ (2 Corinthians 4:17).

“In the Hebrew Bible, Yahweh, the One God of Israel, had declared: ‘Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth! For I am God and there is no other … To me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear’ (Isaiah 45:22-23). Paul quotes this precise phrase from Isaiah but now significantly adds: ‘At the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on the earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father’ (Philippians 2:10-11). Christ as the newly exalted Lord of the cosmos IS THE FUNCTIONAL EQUIVALENT OF YAHWEH.” (James D. Tabor, Paul and Jesus: How the Apostle Transformed Christianity [Simon & Schuster, New York, NY 2012], Six. A Mystical Union, pp. 133-135; bold and capital emphasis ours)(1)


7. The literal term in Hebrew, “messenger Yahweh,” is usually translated as “the angel of Yahweh” but this is not the best choice for English since “angel” in English has its own set of connotations quite different from Hebrew. In Hebrew the phrase used, malak Yahweh, MEANS A MANIFESTATION OF YAHWEH and this figure speaks and acts as Yahweh in the first person, appearing and departing, sometimes in a flame of fire (see Genesis 16:10; 18:33; 22:11; Exodus 3:2; Judges 13:20). There are a few passages where these “two Yahwehs” are mentioned in a single verse: “Then Yahweh (below) rained on Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from Yahweh (above) from heaven” (Genesis 19:24). (Ibid, p. 257; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Hence, not only does Tabor readily acknowledge that Paul believed that Christ is Yahweh God who appeared during the OT period to his saints such as Moses, he even admits that certain strands of Judaism could see that the Hebrew Bible posits two distinct entities as Yahweh God, one visible and the other invisible!

So in answer to the question, God can and actually did die when he became flesh in the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ, and yet he never ceased to exist. The Immortal One took on mortality in order to experience human death without ever ceasing to be immortal. As one early Christian writer and disciple of the Apostles put it:

“For some are in the habit of carrying about the name [of Jesus Christ] in wicked guile, while yet they practise things unworthy of God, whom you must flee as you would wild beasts. For they are ravening dogs, who bite secretly, against whom you must be on your guard, inasmuch as they are men who can scarcely be cured. There is one Physician who is possessed both of flesh and spirit; both made and not made (gennetos kai agennetos); God existing in flesh; true life in death; both of Mary and of God; first passible and then impassible— even Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Ignatius of Antioch, Epistle to the Ephesians, Chapter 7. Beware of false teachers; bold and italic emphasis ours)

“Let not those who seem worthy of credit, but teach strange doctrines, 1 Timothy 1:3, 1 Timothy 6:3 fill you with apprehension. Stand firm, as does an anvil which is beaten. It is the part of a noble athlete to be wounded, and yet to conquer. And especially, we ought to bear all things for the sake of God, that He also may bear with us. Be ever becoming more zealous than what you are. Weigh carefully the times. Look for Him who is above all time, eternal and invisible, yet who became visible for our sakes; impalpable and impassible, yet who became passible on our account; and who in every kind of way suffered for our sakes.” (Ignatius, Epistle to Polycarp, Chapter 3. Exhortations; bold and italic emphasis ours)

Williams cannot object to this since his own scripture speaks of those that have been killed as still being alive in Allah’s presence. In fact, the Quran goes so far as to censure those who would dare say that these martyrs are actually dead:

And say not of those who are slain in God's cause, "They are dead": nay, they are alive, but you perceive it not. S. 2:154 Muhammad Asad

Think not of those who are slain in God's way as dead. Nay, they live, finding their sustenance in the presence of their Lord; They rejoice in the bounty provided by God: And with regard to those left behind, who have not yet joined them (in their bliss), the (Martyrs) glory in the fact that on them is no fear, nor have they (cause to) grieve. S. 3:169-170 Y. Ali

Now this creates a major contradiction for Williams since the above texts explicitly say that these jihadists are not dead, even though they were killed in battle! Does it make any sense to say that people who have been killed are not actually dead? What kind of logic is this?

We will let Williams solve this mess since whatever answer he comes up with will pretty much end up agreeing with the Christian understanding and explanation of how God can be immortal and still experience human death.

So much for Williams’ objection.

Williams also argued that:

“Jesus a man who prays to God. What's the problem with that? There’s only one God. Jesus said to the man who asked him there’s only one God: 'Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.' So, if someone is praying to God they are not God. It is simple binary logic.”

Williams, once again, ends up condemning his own religion since his argument proves that Allah cannot be God (and he isn’t, but for other reasons), since the Quran states that Allah himself prays and worships like his creatures do:

They are those on whom are the prayers (salawatun) from their Lord and mercy (rahmatun), and it is they who are the guided-ones. S. 2:157

He it is who prays (yusallee) for you and His angels too, to bring you forth out of the darkness into the light, for He is merciful to the believers. S. 33:43 Palmer

Verily, God and His angels pray (yusalloona) for the prophet. O ye who believe! pray for him (salloo) and salute him with a salutation! S. 33:56 Palmer

At the same time, the Quran repeatedly states that there is only one God:

And your God is One God (wa-ilahukum ilahun wahidun): There is no god but He, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. S. 2:163 Y. Ali

Your God is one God (ilahukum ilahun wahidun): as to those who believe not in the Hereafter, their hearts refuse to know, and they are arrogant. S. 16:22 Y. Ali

Say: "What has come to me by inspiration is that your God is One God (ilahukum ilahun wahidun): will ye therefore bow to His Will (in Islam)?" S. 21:108 Y. Ali

The hadith reports also mention Allah praying for people:

1387. Abu Umama reported that the Messenger of Allah said, “ALLAH AND His angels AND the people of the heavens AND the earth, EVEN the ants in their rocks AND the fish, PRAY for blessings on those who teach people good." [at-Tirmidhi] (Aisha Bewley, Riyad as-Salihin (The Meadows of the Righteous), Book of Knowledge, 241. Chapter: the excellence of knowledge; bold, capital and italic emphasis ours)

Now make sure to keep in mind that Muslims believe that Allah never became a man and further insist that he is unipersonal. This means that Allah is either worshiping himself or someone else, with that someone else being the true God and therefore greater than Allah.

In light of the foregoing, here is what we end up with if we employ William’s reasoning to his own religious texts:

  1. God is one according to the Quran.
  2. The Quran teaches that Allah prays and worships much like his creatures do.
  3. This proves that Allah cannot be the one God per Williams’ logic.

For more on this issue of Allah praying and worshiping like his servants do, and for a thorough refutation of the desperate Muslim polemical attempts to explain this fact away, we recommend the following articles and rebuttals:

Ironically, Williams went on to quote from one of John’s epistles to prove that God is omniscient, unlike Jesus!

“So there are four examples of ignorance there that Jesus is demonstrating. This is not consistent with God who knows all things. Is it just Muslims who believe that God knows everything, is omniscient? The Bible itself says so, 1 John 3:20. We have a verse which says that God knows everything. Jesus didn’t know many, many things.”

The reason why this is ironic is because John happens to be the same author who not only goes out of his way to declare the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ, but he also confirms (quite emphatically we might add) that Christ is fully omniscient since he perfectly knows and sees everything and everyone!

“Philip found Nathanael and told him, ‘We have found the One Moses wrote about in the Law (and so did the prophets): Jesus the son of Joseph, from Nazareth!’ ‘Can anything good come out of Nazareth?’ Nathanael asked him. 'Come and see,' Philip answered. Then Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him and said about him, ‘Here is a true Israelite; no deceit is in him.’ ‘How do you know me?’ Nathanael asked. ‘Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I SAW YOU,’ Jesus answered. ‘Rabbi,’ Nathanael replied, ‘You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!’” John 1:45-49

“While He was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many trusted in His name when they saw the signs He was doing. Jesus, however, would not entrust Himself to them, since He knew all men and because He did not need anyone to testify about man; for He Himself knew what was in man.” John 2:23-25

“Then He went again to Cana of Galilee, where He had turned the water into wine. There was a certain royal official whose son was ill at Capernaum. When this man heard that Jesus had come from Judea into Galilee, he went to Him and pleaded with Him to come down and heal his son, for he was about to die. Jesus told him, ‘Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.’ ‘Sir,’ the official said to Him, ‘come down before my boy dies!’ ‘Go,’ Jesus told him, ‘your son will live.’ The man believed what Jesus said to him and departed. While he was still going down, his slaves met him saying that his boy was alive. He asked them at what time he got better. ‘Yesterday at seven in the morning the fever left him,’ they answered. The father realized this was the very hour at which Jesus had told him, ‘Your son will live.’ Then he himself believed, along with his whole household. This, therefore, was the second sign Jesus performed after He came from Judea to Galilee.” John 4:43-54

“Jesus, KNOWING IN HIMSELF that His disciples were complaining about this, asked them, ‘Does this offend you?’... But there are some among you who don’t believe.’ (For Jesus knew from the beginning those who would not believe and the one who would betray Him.)” John 6:61, 64

“‘I have spoken these things to you in figures of speech. A time is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures, but I will tell you plainly about the Father. In that day you will ask in My name. I am not telling you that I will make requests to the Father on your behalf. For the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me and have believed that I came from God. I came from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I am leaving the world and going to the Father.’ ‘Ah!’ His disciples said. ‘Now You’re speaking plainly and not using any figurative language. Now we know that You know everything and don’t need anyone to question You. By this we believe that You came from God.’ Jesus responded to them, ‘Do you now believe?’” John 16:25-31

Just in case Williams tries to argue that such texts are to be taken figuratively or hyperbolically, since the disciples didn’t literally believe or mean that Jesus was omniscient, the above passage should thoroughly refute such an assertion since there is nothing hyperbolic about the disciples’ clear testimony, just as the next verse shows:

“He asked him the third time, ‘Simon, son of John, do you love Me?’ Peter was grieved that He asked him the third time, ‘Do you love Me?’ He said, ‘Lord, YOU KNOW EVERYTHING! You know that I love You.’ ‘Feed My sheep,’ Jesus said.’” John 21:17

John wasn’t alone in affirming Christ’s omniscience:

But knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, ‘Why are you thinking evil things IN YOUR HEARTS?’” Matthew 9:4 – cf. Mark 2:8; Luke 5:22

Knowing their thoughts, He told them: ‘Every kingdom divided against itself is headed for destruction, and no city or house divided against itself will stand.’” Matthew 12:25

The Son of God, the One whose eyes are like a fiery flame and whose feet are like fine bronze, says: I know your works—your love, faithfulness, service, and endurance. Your last works are greater than the first… Then all the churches will know that I am the One who examines minds and hearts, and I will give to each of you according to your works.” Revelation 2:18-19, 23b – cf. Jeremiah 17:10; 1 Corinthians 4:4-5; Colossians 2:2-3

This places Williams in a dilemma. Since he chose to cite the writings of this particular author he must therefore be consistent and accept the testimony of this same writer concerning Jesus’ omniscience. He cannot simply dismiss what John says concerning the Deity of the Lord Jesus without exposing himself as an inconsistent and deceptive dawagandist. Thus, if John’s witness is good enough to establish Williams’ position then his testimony is also sufficient to expose and refute him.

In fact, according to the very same epistle that Williams cited, Muhammad turns out to be one of the antichrists that John warned his followers of:

“Children, it is the last hour. And as you have heard, ‘Antichrist is coming,’ even now many antichrists have come. We know from this that it is the last hour… Who is the liar, if not the one who denies that Jesus is the Messiah? This one is the antichrist: the one who denies the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son can have the Father; he who confesses the Son has the Father as well.” 1 John 2:18, 22-23

Since Muhammad denied that his god was a father to anyone, and cursed Christians for believing that Jesus is God’s Son (cf. Q. 5:18; 9:30; 6:101; 19:88-93), he is therefore nothing more than an antichrist according to the inspired testimony of John’s first epistle.

Like we said before, so much for Williams’ arguments and objections.


(1) Ironically, despite admitting that Paul identified the preincarnate Christ as Yahweh God who appeared visibly throughout the OT period, Tabor is still uncertain whether the blessed Apostle thought that Christ was eternal or not!

“In contrast to Adam, Paul believed that Christ, before he was born as the human Jesus, existed from the beginning in the form of God, and had equality with God. Whether Paul understood Jesus as a created being or one eternally existing with God, he never says. Paul does, however, believe that Christ was an agent in the creation in the world, and that he gave up the riches of his heavenly status, taking on the form of a mortal man:

Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ through whom are all things and through whom we exist. (1 Corinthians 8:6)

For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that you through his poverty might become rich. (2 Corinthians 8:9)” (Ibid, Five. A Cosmic Family And A heavenly Kingdom, pp. 119-120; bold emphasis ours)

He also makes the following astonishing statements in reference to Colossians 1:15-17

“The writer of the letter of Colossians, likely writing a decade or more after Paul’s death, possibly made use of some earlier material from Paul, particularly on this topic. Here is how he fills out the description of Christ before his human birth, something Paul himself does not elaborate in the letters we have from him… It seems reasonable to assume that Paul had something like this in mind. Christ would have been the very first of God’s creation, put over everything else, whether the invisible angelic hosts, or the visible things on the earth. The letter of Hebrews, which was also written after Paul, but probably influenced by his thinking, says that Christ was the one ‘through whom God created the world’ (Hebrews 1:2). But all this was before the human being Jesus existed.” (Ibid, p. 120)

There are a few problems with Tabor’s assertions. First, Colossians 1:15-17 which Tabor takes to be a pseudonymous work that, nonetheless, accurately reflects Paul’s own thoughts on this matter, emphatically affirms that Christ is the divine Agent that brought the entire creation into existence, and that he himself exists before all creation:

For EVERYTHING was created BY Him, in heaven and on earth, the visible and the invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—ALL THINGS have been created THROUGH HIM AND FOR HIM. HE IS BEFORE ALL THINGS, and BY HIM ALL THINGS hold together.” Colossians 1:16-17

As such, Christ could not have been a creature, since he is said to have personally existed before all created things came into being, and must therefore be eternal.

Secondly, Paul identifies Christ as Yahweh God, as even Tabor acknowledges, which further confirms that Paul thought that Christ is uncreated. After all, the Hebrew Bible is crystal clear that there is only one Yahweh and that he is eternal in the sense that he has no beginning:

“Then the Levites—Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah, and Pethahiah—said, ‘Stand up. Praise Yahweh your God from everlasting to everlasting.’ Praise Your glorious name, and may it be exalted above all blessing and praise. You ALONE are Yahweh…” Nehemiah 9:5-6a

“Lord, You have been our refuge in every generation. Before the mountains were born, before You gave birth to the earth and the world, from eternity to eternity, You are God.” Psalm 90:1-2

“Yahweh reigns! He is robed in majesty; Yahweh is robed, enveloped in strength. The world is firmly established; it cannot be shaken. Your throne has been established from the beginning; You are from eternity.” Psalm 93:1-2

Are You not from eternity, Yahweh my God? My Holy One, we will not die. Yahweh, You appointed them to execute judgment; my Rock, You destined them to punish us.” Habakkuk 1:12

For Paul to, therefore, identify Christ as Yahweh God he must have truly believed that Christ has always existed. This also explains why the blessed Apostle could proclaim that Christ is equal to God the Father, a fact which Tabor admits.