ABC:John 10

From BibleStrength

Verse 30

Infidels, ThinkingAtheist, and RationalWiki call it a contradiction that Jesus said He and His Father were one, and that He also said His Father was greater than He, questioning "Is Jesus equal to or lesser than?"[1][2][3]

This is not a contradiction but caused by (A) Jim Meritt's lack of understanding about what the Bible means by "oneness" - something many are confused about, and (B) the incorrect assumption that being 'one' means having the same status. The assumption is that because they are one, one cannot be greater than the other.

Jesus and God the Father are one, but that does not mean they are the same being, contrary to the false teaching of the Trinity. Indeed, John 17 shows that God the Father and Jesus the Son of God are one with one another the same way that Christians are one with them (vv. 11, 21-22); through an indwelling of spirit. (v. 23; John 14:23) While Jesus is clearly superior in authority and power to everyone but God the Father (Colossians 1:12-17), and together with the Holy Spirit they form a Godhead of three (1 John 5:7) they are separate beings who should be worshiped and respected as individuals.

When the Bible speaks of oneness, it means the indwelling of God's spirit in a human body so that both are considered one. God spoke back in Zechariah 14:8 of how "living waters shall go out from Jerusalem... and the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one."

Jesus also spoke of how God would redeem the Gentiles so both would be one fold with one Shepherd. In John 17, Jesus speaks of how all Christians are to "be one, as we are." Nonetheless, as Paul states in 1 Corinthians 11:3, "the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." So oneness does include a hierarchy nonetheless. All become one body of Christ called the Church.

For the definitive chapter showing oneness includes distinctions, see 1 Corinthians 12:

Paul states that all Christians have the same Spirit with one Lord and the same God working all in all. However, the Spirit working in each manifests differently in each, giving some wisdom, some knowledge, some faith, some healing, some miracles, some prophecy, some discernment of spirits, some tongues, and to some interpretation of tongues.

The same Spirit works in all these dividing individually to each one, yet all Christians have the same Spirit. As I understand it therefore, oneness seems to mean the indwelling of God. Thus Jesus was indwelt with the Spirit of God the Father and said to be "one" the same as we are all said to be one with both Jesus and God the Father, because God's Spirit indwells us. (John 17:21) Nonetheless, Jesus is greater than Christians (John 13:14), while God the Father is greater than Jesus. (John 14:28) Oneness does not mean one in all things, but refers to a bond whereby we are indwelt with God's Spirit.


  1. Meritt, Jim (1992). A list of Biblical contradictions. Retrieved from
  2. TheThinkingAtheist. Bible Contradictions. Retrieved from
  3. RationalWiki Editors (2019). "Biblical Contradictions." RationalWiki.