Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Jesus is Able to Forgive Sins Because He Is God the Son!

Examining a Muslim’s Appeal to the Prayer of Nabonidus

Sam Shamoun

As promised, I resume my response to Paul Bilal William’s attempt of disproving the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ by either selectively quoting Biblical passages and/or appealing to extra-Biblical sources which he assumes prove his case.

For example, Williams appeals to a writing from the Dead Sea Scrolls called the Aramaic Prayer of Nabonidus (4Q242) to show how a Jewish exorcist forgave sins in a similar manner to Jesus. His purpose in doing so is to refute the Christian assertion that Jesus’ claim to forgive sins is a clear indication of his Deity:

iv) Finally, the Aramaic Prayer of Nabonidus in the Dead Sea scrolls attests to another Jewish healer/exorcist who forgave sins (4Q242). (Jesus is God because he forgave sins)

Apparently, Williams thinks he is on to something since he made reference to this scroll on more than one occasion:

And other men besides Jesus were given such authority, see John 20:23 ‘If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained’. Finally, the Aramaic Prayer of Nabonidus in the Dead Sea scrolls attests to another Jewish healer/exorcist who forgave sins (4Q242). (‘Is Jesus God 02: The Synoptic Picture’ a reply to Nabeel Qureshi)


Furthermore, John the Baptist presumably pronounced sins forgiven (see Mark 1.4/Luke 3.3) without apparently provoking any accusation of breaching the divine prerogative. Also in the Prayer of Nabonidus from Qumran, Nabonidus says ‘an exorcist pardoned my sins’, where human mediation of divine forgiveness is clearly implied (4QprNab4). (Judging By The Injil)

Suffice it to say, there are glaring problems with Williams’ appeal to this supposed prayer of Nabonidus.

First, Williams conveniently failed to tell his readers that scholars are divided over the correct translation of this particular scroll due to its fragmentary nature. Some scholars like Geza Vermes render it in the manner proposed by Williams:

“I was afflicted [with an evil ulcer] for seven years... and an exorcist pardoned my sins…” (Vermes, The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English, p. 614)

Yet others translate it differently as in the following case:

Frags. 1-3 1The words of the pra[y]er of Nabonidus, king of Babylon, [the great] kin[g, when he was smitten] 2with a severe inflammation at the command of G[o]d, in Teima.

[I, Nabonidus,] was smitten [with a severe inflammation] 3lasting seven years. Beca[use] I was thus changed, [becoming like a beast, I prayed to the Most High,] 4and He forgave my sins. An exorcist a Jew, in fact, a mem[ber of the community of exiles came to me and said,] 5“Declare and write down this story, and so ascribe glory and gre[at]ness to the name of G[od Most High.” Accordingly, I have myself written it down:] 6I was smitten with a severe inflammation while in Teima, [by the command of God Most High. Then] 7for seven years I continued praying [to] the gods made of silver and gold, [bronze, iron,] 8wood, stone, and clay, for I [used to th]ink that th[ey] really were gods.

–M.O.W. (The Dead Sea Scrolls: A New Translation, Translated and with Commentary by Michael Wise, Martin Abegg Jr., and Edward Cook [HarperSanFrancisco, 2005], 47. The Healing of Nabonidus (4Q426), p. 342)

As one can see, this version has no mention of an unnamed Jewish exorcist forgiving anyone. Rather, what we have here is an acknowledgment by Nabonidus that God forgave his sins, with an exorcist exhorting him to write down what God had done for him as a means of glorifying him and encouraging others to recognize that he alone is God in contrast to the idols.

The following source explains why there is such a difference of opinion on how to correctly translate this document:

“We must not, however, be too quick to accept the translation proposed by Dupont-Sommer without a healthy dose of agnosticism: the state of the text simply does not permit the desired degree of confidence. More acceptable, however, is the interpretation of Jongeling, Labuschagne and van der Woude. ‘and He [God] pardoned my sins,’ following the conjectural, ‘but I prayed to God Most High.” The resulting translation is: ‘He (God) had a diviner who was a Jewish man from the exiles.’ These varying interpretations of the Nabonidus text by competent Aramaic scholars certainly caution us against unequivocally judging that Jesus’ words of forgiveness were not ‘outstandingly novel or unique.’” (Barry Blackburn, Theios Aner and the Markan Miracle Traditions: A Critique of the Theios Aner Concept As in Interpretative Background of the Miracle Tradition Used By Mark, VI. The Assimilation of Jesus to Yahweh, C. The Authority to Forgive Sins, p. 139; bold emphasis ours)

Thus, the very fact that the scroll is fragmentary, and that scholars themselves are not agreed upon its precise rendering, shows just how weak and desperate Williams appeal to such a text truly is.

Second, that this is the only extra-biblical example Williams could furnish actually undermines his entire assertion since it confirms that the act of forgiving sins is a uniquely divine prerogative which God does not delegate to his agents. After all, if forgiving sins on behalf of God were something common and acceptable within the Judaisms of Jesus’ day then Williams would surely have been able to find plenty of examples to establish his point.

That the best he could do is reference an extra-biblical scroll that is fragmentary in nature, and whose translation is debatable, actually proves that this wasn't a common practice since God didn't delegate his authority to others so that they could also forgive sins on his behalf. It establishes the fact that it is God alone who forgives sins, something with which both the Holy Bible and the Quran are in perfect agreement:

To the Lord our God belong compassion and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against Him;” Daniel 9:9

“Who is a God like You, who pardons iniquity And passes over the rebellious act of the remnant of His possession? He does not retain His anger forever, Because He delights in unchanging love. He will again have compassion on us; He will tread our iniquities under foot. Yes, You will cast all their sins Into the depths of the sea.” Micah 7:18-19

“Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming; who can forgive sins but God alone?” Mark 2:7

and who, when they have committed a shameful deed or have [otherwise] sinned against themselves, remember God and pray that their sins be forgiven – for who but God could forgive sins? – and do not knowingly persist in doing whatever [wrong] they may have done. S. 3:135 Muhammad Asad

Therefore, this fragment is the exception which actually proves the rule.

Third and more importantly, according to the NT Jesus forgives sins in the exact same way that Yahweh does.

For instance, the OT is quite clear that no one is able to ransom the life of another man, which is why God alone is said to be able to forgive and redeem anyone:

“No man can by any means redeem his brother Or give to God a ransom for him—For the redemption of his soul is costly, And he should cease trying forever—That he should live on eternally, That he should not undergo decay… But God will redeem my soul from the power of Sheol, For He will receive me. Selah.” Psalm 49:7-9, 15

I have wiped out your transgressions like a thick cloud And your sins like a heavy mist. Return to Me, for I have redeemed you.” Isaiah 44:22

And yet Jesus and his followers proclaimed that Christ is able to ransom not just one individual, but a great many lives by his vicarious death:

“just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Matthew 20:28 – cf. Mark 10:45

“While they were eating, Jesus took some bread, and after a blessing, He broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, ‘Take, eat; this is My body.’ And when He had taken a cup and given thanks, He gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you; for this is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for forgiveness of sins.” Matthew 26:26-28 – cf. Mark 14:22-24

“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins so that He might rescue us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father,”

“For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time. 1 Timothy 2:5-6

“knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.” 1 Peter 1:18-19

The book of Revelation tells us that Jesus was able to redeem such a huge host of individuals that could not be numbered:

“After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude WHICH NO ONE COULD COUNT, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands; and they cry out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, AND TO THE LAMB.’ And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures; and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying, ‘Amen, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever. Amen.’ Then one of the elders answered, saying to me, ‘These who are clothed in the white robes, who are they, and where have they come from?’ I said to him, ‘My lord, you know.’ And he said to me, ‘These are the ones who come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white IN THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB. FOR THIS REASON, they are before the throne of God; and they serve Him day and night in His temple; and He who sits on the throne will spread His tabernacle over them. They will hunger no longer, nor thirst anymore; nor will the sun beat down on them, nor any heat; for the Lamb in the center of the throne will be their shepherd, and will guide them to springs of the water of life; and God will wipe every tear from their eyes.’” Revelation 7:9-17

Christ’s work of redemption not only moves John to break out in praise of his risen and glorious Lord:

“and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the Ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood—and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.’” Revelation 1:5-6

It also leads every created thing to worship Jesus in the same exact way God the Father is worshiped!

“When He had taken the book, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each one holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song, saying, ‘Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.’ Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, ‘WORTHY IS THE LAMB that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.’ And EVERY CREATED THING which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, ‘To Him who sits on the throne, AND TO THE LAMB, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.’ And the four living creatures kept saying, ‘Amen.’ And the elders fell down and worshiped.” Revelation 5:8-14

The worship given to Jesus by every created being means that, for John, Christ is not a creature but is the Creator. After all, if Christ were a creature of God then we would expect to find him joining the rest of creation in worshiping God. Instead, he is depicted as being worshiped by every created thing alongside God. This would be nothing more than blatant idolatry if Christ were a person whom God brought into existence.

Revelation also describes Jesus in the same way that the prophet Isaiah depicts Yahweh. In the following passage, Isaiah portrays Yahweh going forth as a warrior to redeem his people and to destroy his enemies in his righteous anger since he could find no one who could carry out these functions for him:

“Who is this who comes from Edom, With garments of glowing colors from Bozrah, This One who is majestic in His apparel, Marching in the greatness of His strength? ‘It is I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.’ Why is Your apparel red, And Your garments like the one who treads in the wine press? ‘I have trodden the wine trough ALONE, And from the peoples there was NO MAN with Me. I also trod them in My anger And trampled them in My wrath; And their lifeblood is sprinkled on My garments, And I stained all My raiment. For the day of vengeance was in My heart, And My year of redemption has come. I looked, and there was NO ONE to help, And I was astonished and there was NO ONE to uphold; So MY OWN ARM brought salvation to Me, And My wrath upheld Me. I trod down the peoples in My anger And made them drunk in My wrath, And I poured out their lifeblood on the earth.’” Isaiah 63:1-6 – cf. 59:15b-21

Astonishingly, Revelation takes this exact description and applies it to Christ!

“And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and wages war. His eyes are a flame of fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written on Him which no one knows except Himself. He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses. From His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, ‘KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.’” Revelation 19:11-16

The only way the inspired author could do this is if he believed that Jesus is Yahweh God (even though he is not the Father or the Holy Spirit).

In fact, Jesus’ vicarious death satisfies God’s holiness and justice so thoroughly that it completely removes God’s wrath from all those who turn to and believe in Christ:

“For they themselves report about us what kind of a reception we had with you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God, and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, that is Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath to come.” 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10

“For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him.” 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10

“My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice which turns aside God’s wrath, taking away our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.” 1 John 2:1-2

“This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an the atoning sacrifice which turns aside God’s wrath, taking away our sins.” 1 John 4:9-10 – cf. Romans 3:25; Hebrews 2:17

The OT also proclaims that Yahweh is the only Savior who is able to justify all who turn to him from their sins:

“Declare and set forth your case; Indeed, let them consult together. Who has announced this from of old? Who has long since declared it? Is it not I, the LORD? And there is no other God besides Me, A righteous God and a Savior; There is none except Me. Turn to Me and be saved, all the ends of the earth; For I am God, and there is no other. I have sworn by Myself, The word has gone forth from My mouth in righteousness And will not turn back, That to Me every knee will bow, every tongue will swear allegiance. They will say of Me, ‘ONLY IN THE LORD are righteousness and strength.’ Men will come to Him, And all who were angry at Him will be put to shame. IN THE LORD all the offspring of Israel Will be justified and will glory.” Isaiah 45:21-25

And yet both the angels and the followers of Christ preached that Jesus is the Savior whom the Father sent to justify and save his people!

“But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.’” Matthew 1:20-21

“In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened. But the angel said to them, ‘Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, ‘Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.’” Luke 2:8-14

“He is the one whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and a Savior, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.” Acts 5:31

“From the descendants of this man, according to promise, God has brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus… Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through Him forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and through Him everyone who believes is justified from all things, from which you could not be justified through the Law of Moses.” Acts 13:23, 38-39

“It is a trustworthy statement, deserving full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am foremost of all.” 1 Timothy 1:15 – cf. Ephesians 5:23, 25-30

“And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.” 1 John 4:14

The prophets further bore witness that Yahweh forgives and makes atonement for his own sake, or because of his glorious name, meaning because of his character, i.e. Yahweh is a gracious, merciful and loving God who delights to forgive and save instead of to condemn and destroy:

“Then Moses said, ‘I pray You, show me Your glory!’ And He said, ‘I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the LORD before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion’… The LORD descended in the cloud and stood there with him as he called upon the name of the LORD. Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, ‘The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations.’” Exodus 33:18-19, 34:5-7

FOR YOUR NAME’S SAKE, O LORD, Pardon my iniquity, for it is great.” Psalm 25:11

Save me, O God, BY YOUR NAME, And vindicate me by Your power.” Psalm 54:1

“Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of Your name; And deliver us and atone for our sins FOR YOUR NAME’S SAKE.” Psalm 79:9

“Bless the LORD, O my soul, And all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits; Who pardons all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases; Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle. The LORD performs righteous deeds And judgments for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the sons of Israel. The LORD is compassionate and gracious, Slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness. He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, So great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him. As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. Just as a father has compassion on his children, So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him. For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust. Psalm 103:1-14

“I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake, And I will not remember your sins.” Isaiah 43:25

However, the Lord Jesus and the NT writers taught that individuals are forgiven because or on the basis of Jesus’ name, and that salvation only comes by faith in his name:

“Now He said to them, ‘These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.’ Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and He said to them, ‘Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed IN HIS NAME to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.’” Luke 24:44-47

“Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and each of you be baptized IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.’” Acts 2:38

“Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins.” Acts 10:43

“Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified IN THE NAME OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST and in the Spirit of our God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

The Apostles even went around performing miracles in Jesus’ name in order to prove to others that he is the Author of Life who brings redemption, and that salvation comes only because of the name of the risen Lord:

“While he was clinging to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them at the so-called portico of Solomon, full of amazement. But when Peter saw this, he replied to the people, “Men of Israel, why are you amazed at this, or why do you gaze at us, as if by our own power or piety we had made him walk? The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified His servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release Him. But you disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, but put to death the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead, a fact to which we are witnesses. And on the basis of faith IN HIS NAME, IT IS THE NAME OF JESUS which has strengthened this man whom you see and know; and the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect health in the presence of you all.” Acts 3:11-16


“On the next day, their rulers and elders and scribes were gathered together in Jerusalem; and Annas the high priest was there, and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of high-priestly descent. When they had placed them in the center, they began to inquire, ‘By what power, or in what name, have you done this?’ Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, ‘Rulers and elders of the people, if we are on trial today for a benefit done to a sick man, as to how this man has been made well, let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by this name this man stands here before you in good health. He is the stone which was rejected by you, the builders, but which became the Chief Corner stone. And there is salvation in NO ONE ELSE; for there is NO OTHER NAME UNDER HEAVEN that has been given among men by which we must be saved.’” Acts 4:5-12

Christ’s followers even went around claiming that God grants belief for the sake of the Lord Jesus, or because of what Christ has done in bringing about the salvation of his people out of his love and grace for them:

“For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,” Philippians 1:29

No wonder the Apostle Peter could say that believers are saved because of the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ:

“and He made no distinction between us and them, cleansing their hearts by faith. Now therefore why do you put God to the test by placing upon the neck of the disciples a yoke which neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are.” Acts 15:9-11

In light of the foregoing, it is abundantly clear that Jesus forgives sins and redeems people in the same exact way that the OT writers claim that Yahweh does. Yet the only way Jesus could do this is if he himself is God by nature. Otherwise, he would not be able to save a single soul, let alone countless number of lives from every people, nation, tribe and tongue.

In other words, the only reason why Jesus is able to ransom individuals from their wickedness and purify them to be a holy community,

“In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for Whom and through Whom everything exists, should make the Author of their salvation perfect through what he suffered. Both the One [Jesus] who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.” Hebrews 2:10-11

“And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all… For by one sacrifice He has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.” Hebrews 10:10, 14

In the same exact way that Yahweh redeems and purifies his people:

“Say to the Israelites, ‘You must observe my Sabbaths. This will be a sign between me and you for the generations to come, so you may know that I am the LORD, who makes you holy.’” Exodus 31:13

“O Israel, hope in the LORD; For with the LORD there is lovingkindness, And with Him is abundant redemption. And He will redeem Israel From all his iniquities.” Psalm 130:7-8

“And the nations will know that I am the LORD who makes Israel holy, when My sanctuary is in their midst forever.” Ezekiel 37:28

Is because he happens to be the great God and Savior who became a flesh and blood human being in order to save his Church!

“looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of OUR GREAT GOD AND SAVIOR, Christ Jesus, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.” Titus 2:13-14

To, therefore, compare what the NT teaches concerning Jesus’ intrinsic ability to forgive and save sinners with what a fragmentary document says, and whose exact translation is even debated by scholars, is rather desperate to say the least.

Challenge to Paul Williams

We challenge Williams to show where monotheistic Jews ascribed all of the following characteristics to a specific individual in the way the NT does for Christ:

  • The ability to forgive sins.
  • The ability to redeem individuals from death and grant them everlasting life.
  • The ability to justify everyone who turns to and believes in that specific person.
  • That salvation and forgiveness is only found in that person’s name, meaning because of who that individual is and what he has accomplished.

The foregoing challenges are meant to help the readers see that what Christ and his followers taught concerning Jesus’ ability to forgive sins and redeem people is unprecedented since no monotheistic Jew would attribute such qualities and functions to a mere creature.

We now come to the conclusion of this particular response. Lord Jesus willing, there will be further responses to Williams’ gross distortions of passages such as John 20:23 which should be appearing soon.