“At that time the Feast of Dedication took place at Jerusalem. It was winter, and Jesus was walking in the temple, in the colonnade of Solomon. So the Jews gathered around him and said to him, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.” The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you going to stone me?” The Jews answered him, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.”
– John 10:22-33
A few short years into his ministry, the controversy surrounding Jesus Christ reached a boiling point. Jesus had repeatedly said he was God, and the religious leaders wanted to kill Him for it. So, they confronted Him in public at the Temple hoping He would seal His death sentence.
Basically, standing before a firing squad with His life on the line, Jesus declared that His works (miracles) and words (message) proved that He was in fact God. This statement of Jesus Christ is without precedent or peer. In fact, no other major world religion has a founder who claimed to be God. Jesus Christ alone said He is God.
If Jesus’ claim was untrue, He would be guilty of the sin of blasphemy. The penalty for blasphemy was death. Leviticus 24:16 commanded, “Whoever blasphemes the name of the LORD shall surely be put to death. All the congregation shall stone him. The sojourner as well as the native, when he blasphemes the Name, shall be put to death.”
Jesus clearly said He was God and was clearly put to death for saying that He was God. His enemies could not be more clear saying, “we are going to stone you…for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.” New York’s Judge Gaynor once rightly said, “It is plain from each of the gospel narratives, that the alleged crime for which Jesus was tried and convicted was blasphemy.”
Do you believe that Jesus is God?