Before I say anything else, I admit that this question, “Is there really only one god?” sounds both ridiculous and blasphemous. But you know me, I normally ask questions most people don’t ask. So, here we go: Does the Bible really present its audience with a monotheistic worldview (i.e. only one god exists)? The answer to this question is surprisingly – no.

In fact, the Bible reflects the ancient worldview of a god-congested universe. Here are just a few representative texts:

“God stands in the Divine Council; He renders judgment among the gods… I said, “You are gods, and all of you are sons of the Most High. (Ps. 82:1, 6)

“When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, when he divided mankind, he fixed the borders of the peoples according to the number of the sons of God.” (ESV, Deut.32:8 following Qumran/LXX version of the Hebrew.)

“Ascribe to the Lord, sons of the mighty (literally from Hebrew sons of gods), ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.” (Ps. 29:1)

“Who is like You among the gods, O LORD?” (NASB, Ex. 15:11)

“For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God…” (ESV, Deut.10:17)

“You shall have no other gods before Me. (NASB, Ex.20:3)

The view of the divine world presented in the Bible is not monotheistic, but rather henotheistic (there exists a multiplicity of gods, but One Supreme God exists above them all). Apostle Paul, whose thinking was very much in line with this very idea (because of his pharisaic idea of the Shema), wrote the following:

For although there are many that that are called gods in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many gods and many lords) – yet for us there is One God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist”. (1 Cor. 8:5-6)

There are other powerful heavenly beings (this is how in Biblical times gods were understood – any god is bigger than any human). Now we commonly refer to them as angels and demons (as well as principalities and powers), but in the Biblical times most people called them gods and/or sons of god/s.  Clearly, Moses, Jesus and Paul presume this. They also are in agreement on an even more essential point. While there may be other “gods,” only God Most High, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is worthy to be worshiped, adored and obeyed! Reread the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and the New Testament as it was first intended!

BEGIN YOUR JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY

429 COMMENTS

  1. That was an interesting question that I have pondered before. The way it was asked is tricky, if I may say so. When a Jewish person look at your question, they will say yes to only one God. While a biblical scholar would say no. However, if you ask "Is there one True God?", The jewish person would definitely say YES to "God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob", and the biblical scholar would agree, and I too.

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    • The other gods in question are false gods tin gods that do not exist like Allah Buddah ect they exist in the mind but not in reality there is only one true God who created the heavens and the Earth

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    • We should have no doubt at all that there is only one God. As there is only one birth mother to a child, there is only one God who created us. The world thinks we are serving the same God, through various religious platforms, however that is far from the truth. The truth is exclusive and if there is one truth to anything, then their must be only one God, 1 way to him, it's through the Trinity of God, through Jesus Christ. The 10 commandments would be a direct indication of 1 God, 1 plan, 1 purpose for mankind.

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    • Have studied the ancient Hebrew Tex . Modern man should be amazed . At how the ancient structures in Peru , Egypt , and all over the globe Were built . And we don’t know HOW ! Or WHO ! Yet mans ignorance just excepts ignorance . The Chinese did worship the serpent and their new year they pay homage to this serpent ? South America there is Kubalakan the shape shifting serpent that they built there temples to . Even Russia and on all the people’s on the ancient continents this serpent god they worshiped . The ignorance !

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  2. You mentioned Exodus 20:3 "You shall have no other gods before me", that commandment goes beyond the physical gods in the heavenly realm, I believe the 'gods' is what our heart desired and fashion as such that pull us away from the 'One True God'.
  3. I appreciate all that you do and I appreciate your teachings. However, I am having difficulty reconciling what you said in the brief lesson above with the following OT Scriptures: Is. 43:10, Is. 44:6, Is. 45: 5-6, Is. 45:18, Is. 45:22. My understanding is that the Bible’s references to “other gods” is not an acknowledgment of their existence, but rather an acknowledgment of human depravity (in that humans want to have gods of their own making), and an acknowledgment of Satanic deception. People worship other things as gods, but they do so from a fallen and deceived nature.
    • Bob, greetings my brother. I think we are dealing here with a BEING that ULTIMATELY DESERVES being called GOD. In other words, our modern notions of God are very different for us. For example, for God to be God he has to be everywhere; present, all-powerful, all-knowing, etc. The ancients had a different definition of this term. So it depends what definition are we using. Did you notice that all your quotations are Isainic (nothing wrong with that of course), but in Isaiah, in particular, we have this kind of polemic (I think) between YHWH and other gods that bring

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    • Israel Bible Center equips you with the tools you need to enter into the Jewish world of Scripture. We provide first-rate teaching, and the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s top scholars. As a student, you will be able to interact personally with our teaching faculty, and gain access to hundreds of hours of Bible courses, including Leviticus and The New Testament and The Jewish Apostle Paul I: His World. Become a part of the community of teachers and students at Israel Bible Center today!

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  4. Although I have pondered several of the scriptures you quoted, the idea that there are other, lesser, gods makes me very nervous.

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    • Dr Eli and Lindy, Shalom! We must be driven by doctrine and it is essential for one to be saved as the bible says time and again. The ONE True God whose Name is YHWH came down to earth as He promised He would and delivered us from the burden of sin the humans carrying in their lives. The human beings are led by the knowledge of demons, we say Brahma, Vishnu and Maheswara are God [generator, operator and destroyer] and we can see this throughout all nations. But Bible never talks about three but One True [email protected]

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    • There are gods because the people who believe in them perceive so, those demons are considered gods by those who believe in them because they are supernatural and more superior to the human race. But those who believe in the one true God, know that those gods are powerless to them. But they can be powerful to those who don't believe in the one true God, because they don't have the power of Christ to overcome the power of those gods. We Christians have power in the Name, the blood of Jesus and the Holy ghost.

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  5. Yes there are Gods and we are sons and daughters of God. We have God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost, They are separate beings and one in purpose. The Rock of our salvation is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
  6. John 17 King James Version (KJV) 17 These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: 2 As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. 3 And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.
  7. The term "elohim" may refer to the One True God, or to malachim (angels) of various ranks, or to men of position and power. So yes, there are many Gods. As Meshiachim this is a question we should have asked ourselves and come to terms with. What makes Judaism monotheistic is that there is One God who is self-existent. One God who created al others, who has power over them all and to whom they will ultimately answer. That One God is who we serve and worship and obey. And that's why we can say the Shemah with clear hearts.
  8. One God, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. That God. None other. Men can make gods and forget them, but the One God does not forget His creation.
    • Israel Bible Center equips you with the tools you need to enter into the Jewish world of Scripture. We provide first-rate teaching, and the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s top scholars. As a student, you will be able to interact personally with our teaching faculty, and gain access to hundreds of hours of Bible courses, including Exodus and The New Testament and The Revelation in a Jewish Context II : Discovery. Become a part of the community of teachers and students at Israel Bible Center today!
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