In my debate with Trinitarian apologist Ethan Smith in the Philippines, I was asked why “Jesus” is listed in Jude verse five as the one who saved God’s people out of the land of Egypt. I cited Jude verse five in the New American Standard Version in which the name of Jesus does not appear. After the debate, I subsequently found that the name of Jesus does not appear in most reputable translations because the name of Jesus is completely absent from the original Greek text in Jude verse five.
Mr Smith quoted Jude verse five from a translation that used the name of Jesus.
Jude 5 (ESV)
5Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
Jude 5 (NASB)
5Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe.
Notice that the NASB translation does not use the name “Jesus” in verse five while the ESV translation does. I checked the original Greek text for Jude verse five and found that the Greek name for Jesus (Iesous) does not appear. Therefore, most reputable translations only say, “Lord” rather than “Jesus” in Jude verse 5 because the name of Jesus does not appear in the original Greek text.
What About Jesus Christ as our Master and Lord In Verse Four?
Jude verse 4 (ESV)
4For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
Jude verse 5 (NASB)
4For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation, ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
After I cited Jude verse five in the NASB which does not use the name of “Jesus”, I stated that Mr Smith was adding “Jesus” to the text because the NASB is known as one of the most literal translations from the original Greek. Then Mr Smith cited Jude verse four to show that Jesus was previously spoken of as “our only Master and Lord” in verse four. I cited Jude verse four in the NASB which says, “… ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ”.
I emphasized the fact that “our God” is also listed along with “our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ” so that verse five could be addressing God the Father as “Lord” (Kurios) in Jude verse five. Then I stated that either way, Oneness Pentecostals have no problem with Jude verses four and five because we believe that Jesus Christ is the same person as God the Father who existed during the time of the Hebrew patriarchs and prophets before his virgin conception and birth.
New Testament Scriptures that identify Jesus Christ as the Spirit of God in the Hebrew Bible are simply pointing out the fact that Jesus is not just a man in the New Testament. For Jesus has always existed as the Spirit of “the Mighty God” and “Everlasting Father” (Isaiah 9:6) before becoming the child born and son given. This explains all of the scriptures that speak of Jesus Christ pre-existing his birth as Yahweh our Saviour (Jesus means “Yahweh Saves” in Hebrew) before becoming a human son.
Hebrews 13:8 (KJV) states, “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.”
Jesus Christ could not have existed “the same yesterday … and forever” in eternity past as a man, but he did exist “yesterday … and forever” as Yahweh our Saviour before becoming a man. It is in this light that the apostles proved that Jesus Christ is the Spirit that was in the Hebrew prophets (“the Lord is the Spirit” – 2 Cor. 3:17).
1 Peter 1:11 (KJV) says that “the Spirit of Christ” was in the prophets,
“… the Spirit of Christ which was in them (the prophets) did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.”
But 2 Peter 1:21 (KJV) identifies that Spirit as the Holy Spirit,
“For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.”
1 Peter 1:11 states that, “the Spirit of Christ” was in the prophets moving them to testify, but 2 Peter 1:21 identifies that Spirit as the Holy Spirit who moved on the prophets to speak. Since Trinitarian theology affirms that “the Son is not the Holy Spirit” and “the Holy Spirit is not the Son,” Trinitarian theology is unscriptural because it contradicts the plain meaning of the words of inspired scripture. For how can Trinitarians explain why John 14:26 identifies the Holy Spirit as the paraclete (advocate / intercessor) while John 14:16-18 and 1 John 2:1 identifies Jesus as the indwelling Spirit who is our only paraclete (advocate / intercessor). Since no Trinitarian can explain how an alleged coequally distinct non incarnate God the Holy Spirit can pray to God by making “intercession for the saints according to the will of God” in Romans 8:26-27, we know that the indwelling Holy Spirit of God the Father is the same Spirit who descended upon the virgin to become incarnate as the human son in Luke 1:35 and Matthew 1:20.
God as God, such as an alleged non incarnate God the Holy Spirit Person, cannot pray to God while only God with us as a man can pray to God. An alleged non incarnate God the Holy Spirit Person cannot pray to God as God, but when God’s Holy Spirit also became a man, then Immanuel “God with us” as a man could display human attributes such as praying to God and being tempted of the devil. Therefore, Jesus is the same “substance of Being” (Heb. 1:3 “hypostasis”) as the Holy Spirit of God (Matthew 1:20 – Jesus was made “ek” “out of the Holy Spirit”) that was “reproduced” or “copied” (Heb. 1:3 “charakter”) as a fully complete human being (Heb. 2:17), who is “the brightness of His glory (the Father’s) and the express image of His Person (the Father’s Person – Hebrews 1:3)” as a fully complete human person.
Wherefore, Jesus Christ is the same divine person as the Holy Spirit of God the Father, who revealed Himself to the Hebrew prophets and acted on their behalf. For the Father alone is “the only true God” (John 17:3) who came to save His people from their sins by manifesting Himself in the flesh (1 Tim. 3:16) as the one who was “made … fully human in every way” (Heb. 2:17). Therefore Jesus Christ existed as the Lord God who judged the Egyptians, the Lord God who judged the fallen angels, and the Lord God who destroyed the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah in Jude verses four through seven before he also became the Son of God and the Son of man via his virgin conception.