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Are Christians Little Gods?

There is a common teaching among Word Faith leaders that we christians are God's reflection on this earth, little god's as they like to say.  They will quote Psalm 82:6 and John 10:34 out of context to "prove" their case.      

Mormons quote Psalm 82:6 as well to "prove" their doctrine that they will be exalted to godhood.  Chew on that for a minute, the very proof text that word of faith teachers cite is the same as the cultic Mormon Church.

Creflo Dollar goes so far as to say that it is blasphemy if you do not agree that christian's are little god's.  I will give you a some of examples of these quotes from Word Faith leaders; Ken Hagin, Benny Hinn, Creflo Dollar and Ken Copeland:


Your not a sinner saved by grace you sons and daughters of the most high God.  You are god's!” 

(Creflo Dollar Changing your world, April 17, 2002, LeSea Broadcasting)


"I speak to fig tress!  I speak to mountains!  I cast out demons!  Hallelujah!  I raise the dead!  Hallelujah!  If need be I walk on water!  I'm a god of the Most High God!"

(Creflo Dollar, Audio-Clip, "Creflo Dollar: Christian Celebrity or Charasmatic Gnostic?" #0418)


"I'm a little 'g.'  I need to start carrying myself like the Most High God!  I'm a little god on this planet."

(Creflo Dollar, Audio-Clip, "Creflo Dollar: Christian Celebrity or Charasmatic Gnostic?" #0418)


"You dont have a god in you, you are one!"

(Ken Copeland, he Force Of Love Audiotape, 1987)


"Adam in the Garden of Eden, was God manifested in the flesh."

(Hank Hanegraaff, "Christianity in Crisis" page 338.  Ken Copeland, "Following the Faith of Abraham I,")


"God's reason for creating Adam was His desire to reproduce Himself...He was not a little like God.  He was not almost like God.  He was not subordinate to God even."

(Hank Hanegraaff, "Christianity in Crisis" page 109.  Ken Copeland, "Following the Faith of Abraham I,")


Now Peter said by exceeding great and precious promises you become partakers of the divine nature.  Alright, are we gods?  We are a class of gods.

(Hank Hanegraaff, "Christianity in Crisis" page 117.  Ken Copeland, "Praise The Lord," TBN February 5, 1986)


"[Man] was created on terms of equality with God, and he could stand in God's presence without any consciousness of inferiority...God made us as much like Himself as possible...He made us the same class of being that He is Himself...Man lived in the realm of God.  He lived on terms equal with God...[The] believer is called Christ...That's who we are; we're Christ"

(Ken Hagin, Zoe: The God-Kind of Life," 1989. pp. 35-36, 41)


"The believer is as much an incarnation as was Jesus of Nazareth"

(Ken Hagin, "The Incarnation," The Word of Faith, Dec, 1980, 14)


"God came from heaven, became a man, made man into little gods, went back to heaven as a man.  He faces the Father as a man.  I face devils as the son of God...Quit your nonsense!  What else are you?  If you say, I am, you’re saying I’m a part of Him, right?  Is he God?  Are you His offspring?  Are you His children?  You can’t be human!  You can’t!  You can’t!  God didn’t give birth to flesh…You said, "Well, that’s heresy."  No, that’s your crazy brain saying that."

(Hank Hanegraaff, "Christianity in Crisis" page 130-131.  Benny Hinn, Our Position in Christ #2—The Word Made Flesh)


Let us look at Psalm 82 in context to see what it is saying.  Do you agree that we translate the bible in a literal sense, but if the context is speaking figuratively we will do harm to translating it literally. 

For example, Jesus said to pluck out your eyes and cut off your hands if they cause you to sin.  Does Jesus actually want us to chop off our hands?  A resounding no!  Jesus is simply telling us how serious sin is and that we should make every effort to avoid it. 

When Psalm 91 says that we shall find protection under God's wings is it saying that God is a bird?  When David calls God his rock, is God a literal rock?  Of course not!  They are simply describing the attributes of God so that we can understand, it is called an anthropomorphism.

Let us quote Psalm 82 in full:

"God standeth in the congregation of the mighty; he judgeth among the gods.  How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked? Selah.  Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy.  Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked.  They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness: all the foundations of the earth are out of course.  I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.  But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.  Arise, O God, judge the earth: for thou shalt inherit all nations."

What is going on in this verse?  The judges of Israel are called god's (Elohim) because they were in a postion of God.  They ruled matters of life and death, they were appointed by God to rule and judge as Romans 13:1-2 clearly states. 

Compare Romans 13:1-2 with Exodus 4:16, 7:1-2.  God calls Moses god in Exodus 7:1.  Why is that?  Well, God explains that it means you are a spokesman for him.  Exactly like the wicked judges in Psalms 82.  See for yourself what God said about Moses and him being a god, i.e., spokesman for Him:

"And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.  Thou shalt speak all that I command thee: and Aaron thy brother shall speak unto Pharaoh, that he send the children of Israel out of his land, "Exodus 7:1-2.

With this in mind do you see what is happening in Psalm 82?  God is actually mocking these judges and telling them, "But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes."  God is telling them that your position of a judge has corrupted your thinking and your actions.  Despite your high and lofty view of yourself you shall die like a man!  How can a god die like a man?  Do you see the contradiction in believing that this verse proves that men are god's?  In context this verse actually mocks people for thinking this.

See what God has to say about there being any other gods beside Himself:

"Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it?  Ye are even my witnesses.  Is there a God beside me?  Yea, there is no God; I know not any," Isaiah 44:8.


"Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me," Isaiah 43:10.


"I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me...Thus saith the LORD, The labour of Egypt, and merchandise of Ethiopia and of the Sabeans, men of stature, shall come over unto thee, and they shall be thine: they shall come after thee; in chains they shall come over, and they shall fall down unto thee, they shall make supplication unto thee, saying, Surely God is in thee; and there is none else, there is no God...Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time?  who hath told it from that time?  Have not I the LORD?  And there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me.  Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else,"  Isaiah 45:5, 14, 21-22.


"To whom will ye liken me, and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be like?...Remember this, and shew yourselves men: bring it again to mind, O ye transgressors.  Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me," Isaiah 46:5, 8-9.


In the book of Acts chapter 14 after Paul healed a man the people said, "The gods are come down to us in the likeness of men."  Here is a perfect opportunity for the apostle Paul to teach the doctrine that christians are god's. Let's see what Paul says, "Which when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of, they rent their clothes, and ran in among the people, crying out, And saying, Sirs, why do ye these thingsWe also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein."

The apostles were outraged at being called "god's" yet this is what Word Faith teachers preach from pulpits.  This was the perfect opportunity for them to teach us that we are god's, instead of doing that they tore their clothes and told them that they were also men just like them.

Why didn't Paul say, "I am God's reflection on the earth!  I am just like my Daddy!  I come from God stock!  I am a little 'g'!  I am the Lord your God!  I'm a god of the Most High God!  I'm a little god on this planet."  Doesn't that sound absurd?  Well, those are exact quotes from Creflo Dollar.

The Bible warns us not to follow men (Jeremiah 17:5, Psalm 118:8), but to test what all leaders teach with scripture (1 John 4:1, Acts 17:11).  God even says that he will test us with false prophets to see if we truly love God with all of our heart (Deuteronomy 13:1-3).  God even says that some of these false prophets will have signs and wonders that come to pass, thus emphasizing the importance to prove all things with scripture.

Do you truly love God with all of your heart and soul or do you follow man?  Is the bible your final authority or man?  These are some questions that you might have to wrestle with.  I pray that you choose God over man.   


JOHN 10:34—Did Jesus advocate that people could become God?


Jesus answered a group of Jews and said, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, you are gods.’”  Does this mean that humans can become God?  New Agers tell us that “we can be the God that Jesus proclaimed us to be: ‘Ye are Gods’” (Spangler, 1978, 47).  Mormons also cite this verse to support their view on the plurality of gods (Bruce McConkie, 1977, 24).


This text should not be used to support the view that we are (or can become) little gods, for such an interpretation is contrary to the overall context. Jesus is not speaking to pantheists (who believe that God is everything and everything is God) or polytheists (who believe in many gods). Rather, he is addressing strict Jewish monotheists who believe that only the Creator of the universe is God.  So, his statement should not be wrenched out of this monotheistic context and given a pantheistic or polytheistic twist.

Jesus’ statement must be understood as part of his overall reasoning here which is an a fortiori argument: “If God even called human judges ‘gods,’ then how much more can I call myself the Son of God.”  Christ had just pronounced himself one with the Father, saying, “I and My Father are one” (10:30).  The Jews wanted to stone him because they thought Christ was blaspheming, making himself out to be equal with God (vv. 31–33).  Jesus responded by quoting Psalm 82:6 which says, “I said, you are gods.”  So, Jesus reasoned, if human judges could be called “gods,” then why can’t the Son of God be called “God”?

Note that not everyone is called “gods” but only a special class of persons, namely, judges about whom Jesus said, they are those to “whom the word of God came” (v. 35).  Jesus was showing that if the Old Testament Scriptures could give some divine status to divinely appointed judges, why should they find it incredible that he should call himself the Son of God?

These judges were “gods” in the sense that they stood in God’s place, judging even life and death matters.  They were not called “gods” because they were divine beings.  Indeed, the text Jesus cites (Psalm 82) goes on to say that they were “mere men” and would “die” (v. 7).  It also affirms that they were “the sons of the Most High,” but not because they were of the essence of God himself.

It is possible, as many scholars believe, that when the psalmist Asaph said to the unjust judges, “You are gods,” he was speaking in irony. He was saying, “I have called you ‘gods,’ but in fact you will die like the men that you really are.”  If this is so, then when Jesus alluded to this psalm in John 10, he was saying that what the Israelite judges were called in irony and in judgment, he is in reality.  Jesus was giving a defense for his own deity, not for the deification of man.


PSALM 82:6—Does this verse mean that human beings can become gods?


Psalm 82:6 says, “I said, ‘You are gods, And all of you are sons of the Most High’ ” (nasb).  Mormons believe this verse supports the idea that human beings may become gods (Bruce McConkie, 1966, 321).


There is no evidence for the Mormon polytheistic belief that men are gods in this text. Unlike the word Lord (Yahweh) which always means God, the word “gods” (elohim) can be used of God (Genesis 1:1), angels (Ps. 8:4–6; cf. Hebrews 2:7), or human beings (as here).

This psalm focuses on a group of Israelite judges who, because they exercised life and death decisions over people, were loosely called “gods.” But these judges became corrupted and were unjust.  So Asaph, the author of this psalm, said that, even though these judges were called gods, they would die like the men they really were (see v. 7).

Asaph may have been speaking in irony in calling these evil judges “gods.”  If so, then there is no justification for calling them “gods” in any serious sense.  In any event, the polytheistic claim is without justification, since this verse is uttered in the context of Jewish monotheism, in which it is blasphemous for any mere human being to be called God in a divine sense.

Besides, in Isaiah 44:8, God himself asks, “Is there any God besides Me, Or is there any other Rock?  I know of none” (nasb).  Similarly, Isaiah 43:10 portrays God as saying, “Before Me there was no God formed, And there will be none after Me.”  Clearly human beings can’t become gods.

(Geisler, N. L., & Rhodes, R. 1997. When cultists ask : A popular handbook on cultic misinterpretations . Baker Books: Grand Rapids, Mich.

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.--2 Timothy 4:7 (NIV)