I, I, am the LORD, And there is no Savior besides Me. Isaiah 43:11
The Trinitarian Claim
Trinitarians claim that Jesus must be God because there is no Savior except God and Jesus is the Savior of the world.
The Claim vs. The Facts
Trinitarians are interpreting this verse to mean God saves apart from anyone else. However, that simply won't work since God had already raised up several Saviors to save Israel from their enemies (see Luke 1:68-71; 1 Cor 15:26). Moreover, Jesus is God's salvation (Luke 2:30), the Savior God raised up. The Scriptural facts tell us that Isaiah 43:11 necessarily means that there is no Savior apart from God since He is the One who raises up every one of them including Jesus.
The Problem with the Claim
Trinitarians make the following observations:
Today in the city of David there has been born to you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.
He is truly the Savior of the world.
Having made this particular observation, they therefore conclude that Jesus must be Yahweh God because God says, "there is no Savior besides me" at Isaiah 43:11 and Hosea 13:4.
1. God has raised up Many Saviors
Trinitarians ignore some very key facts. God has raised up numerous Saviors. The Hebrew word used in all the following quotations of Scripture is the exact same Hebrew word translated as "Savior" at Isaiah 43:11.
When the sons of Israel cried to the LORD, the LORD raised up a Savior for the sons of Israel to save them, Othniel the son of Kenaz. Judges 3:9
But when the sons of Israel cried to the LORD, the LORD raised up a Savior for them, Ehud the son of Gera, the Benjaminite. Judges 3:15
Then Jehoahaz besought the Lord, and the Lord hearkened to him; for he saw the oppression of Israel, how the king of Syria oppressed them. Therefore the Lord gave Israel a Savior, so that they escaped from the hand of the Syrians. 2 Kings 13:4-5
Therefore You delivered them into the hand of their oppressors who oppressed them, But when they cried to You in the time of their distress, You heard from heaven, and according to Your great compassion You gave them Saviors who saved them from the hand of their oppressors. Nehemiah 9:27
The Saviors will ascend Mount Zion to judge the mountain of Esau, and the kingdom will be the LORD'S. Obadiah 1:21
Trinitarians are not appreciating the facts. To claim that Isaiah 43:11 means that but God acts alone to save creates a contradictory inconsistency. God has raised up many Saviors. It also matters not what Yahweh was saving them from. The Trinitarian interpretation would then exclude all these Saviors which God raised up and their argument then contradicts Scripture. In the above verses we see that it was indeed God who raised up these Saviors. Apart from God, there is no Savior but God because it was God who raised them up. He is the one who raises up these Saviors. God is the one responsible for providing these salvations in the above passages. Each of these Saviors are Yahweh's Saviors and in this way there is no Savior besides Yahweh.
When Yahweh raised up judges for them, Yahweh was with the judge and saved them from the hand of their enemies all the days of the judge. Judges 2:19
Men are the means by which God saved Israel. It is by His own power that He saved them from their enemies. It is the same with Jesus. In fact, Jesus told us bluntly that he could do nothing from himself and it was the Father abiding in him which did the works. God the Father was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself.
2. Consider the Audience: Ancient Israelites
Isaiah the prophet was God's prophet to the people of Israel. They knew their Scriptures and they knew God had raised up many saviors to save them from their enemies. Let the reader understand the significance of this fact. When these Israelites would read Isaiah 43:11, they knew it didn't mean God acted along to save them. They knew it mean God was solely responsible for raising up human Saviors to save them from their enemies. Indeed, God raised up Jesus to save us from our enemies (Luke 1:68-71) and the last enemy is death (1 Cor 15:26). For that reason, Jesus is described as God's salvation (Luke 2:30). But the ancient Israelites didn't know about Jesus yet. They wanted to be saved from their earthly enemies as God had saved them many times before by raising up human saviors.
Carefully notice the context and what Yahweh promises to save Israel from:
I, even I, am the Lord, and there is no savior besides Me. It is I who have declared and saved and proclaimed,
And there was no strange god among you. So you are My witnesses,” declares the Lord, “And I am God. Even from eternity I am He, and there is none who can deliver out of My hand; I act and who can reverse it?” Thus says the Lord your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, For your sake I have sent to Babylon, and will bring them all down as fugitives, even the Chaldeans, into the ships in which they rejoice. I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King. Thus says the Lord, who makes a way through the sea and a path through the mighty waters, Who brings forth the chariot and the horse, The army and the mighty man... (Isaiah 43:11ff.)
And in Hosea:
Yet I have been the Lord your God since the land of Egypt and you were not to know any god except Me, For there is no savior besides Me. I cared for you in the wilderness, in the desert land.
In each case, the salvation in question necessarily refers to how Yahweh God saved Israel from their enemies - Egypt and foreign armies. We must appreciate the context in which Isaiah 43:11 was spoken. Israel knew that God had raised up many saviors for them to deliver them from this or that. So when ancient Israelites heard these words from Isaiah it was impossible for them to conclude these words meant God saved by acting alone. They knew he had saved them many times by raising up human Saviors. These ancient Israelites would necessarily interpret Isaiah 43:11 to mean there is no Savior apart from their God Yahweh since He is the one who raises up Saviors for them.
Note also the following passages:
The Lord did not say that He would blot out the name of Israel from under heaven, but He saved them by the hand of Jeroboam the son of Joash. 2 Kings 14:27.
Salvation belongs to Yahweh. Your blessing be upon Your people (Psalm 3:8).
But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving that which I have vowed I will pay. Salvation is from Yahweh. (Jonah 2:9).
Analysis of the Facts
1. God Our Savior Raised Up a Savior of the world
In a similar manner, the New Testament several times refers to the Father as "God our Savior." Now carefully observe how the Bible speaks of Jesus in the very same way, God raised up a Savior, namely, Jesus.
He is the one whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and Savior, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.Acts 5:31
From the seed of David, according to promise, God has raised up to Israel a Savior, Jesus.
The Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. 1 John 4:14
God gave his only son to be His Savior. Indeed, we read that God gave Jesus to Israel, born of Mary, to save them from their sins (Matthew 1:21). And God "has raised up a horn of salvation for us In the house of David His servant" (Luke 1:69). It is God's doing, Yahweh who raises up this Savior just as He raised up all the other human Saviors in the Old Testament. We also read at Acts 2:21 that whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved only to discover that the Lord in question is the man Jesus whom God the Father has made Lord by raising him from the dead (2:22-36). It is also quite clear that it is a human who is the Savior at
Acts 13:23 (as quoted above)
2. God Our Savior and HIS Salvation: Jesus
And what is even more explicit is the declaration of Simeon:
And there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord's Christ. And he came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to carry out for Him the custom of the Law, then he took Him into his arms, and blessed God, and said, Now Lord, You are releasing Your bond-servant to depart in peace, according to Your word; For my eyes have seen Your salvation. (Luke 2:25-30).
The flesh in Simeon's arms was his God's salvation, Yahweh's salvation. God has raised up many human Saviors and now he has raised up another human Savior who will save Israel from their sins and from death. Because God our Savior has raised up Jesus as HIS salvation it is also said of Jesus, "all flesh shall see the salvation of God" (Luke 3:6; cf. Acts 28:28). Jesus is our God's salvation, the salvation of God our Savior. Jesus is not Yahweh but Yahweh's salvation. There is no Savior apart from Yahweh since He is solely responsible for raising up Saviors for His people and the ultimate Savior He has raised up is Jesus, Yahweh's salvation. Indeed, that is what his name means.
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel for He has visited us and accomplished redemption for His people and He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of David His servant. Luke 1:68-69.
He is the one whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and a Savior, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. Acts 5:31.
When we realize Jesus is God's salvation, it becomes quite clear that God raised up Jesus to be Savior of the world and in this manner there is no Savior apart from God. There is no Savior apart from God because it is God who raises up saviors to save his people from this or that. He raised up Jesus to save Israel from their sins. And indeed, we read in the New Testament that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself. The Father abiding in Jesus did the works (John 14:10). It was all God the Father's doing.
Salvation and glory and power belong to our God. Revelation 19:1.
Then I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of His Messiah have come." Revelation 12:10
Jesus is God's salvation, the human Savior who God raised up from the House of David. When all the facts are honestly reviewed, it is quite plain and clear what is intended at Isaiah 43:11. The Trinitarian claim that Jesus must be Yahweh falls apart when two things are realized. First, the Old Testament shows us God saves His people by raising up human Saviors. Second, it is clear the same thing is occurring when we discover that Jesus IS God's salvation, a Savior who God raised up. Yahweh says there is no Savior without me. Since it is God who raises up saviors and since Jesus IS Yahweh's salvation then we should be able to see that it is quite true, there is no Savior apart from Yahweh because He is the One who raises up human Saviors to deliver His people. The Father (our Savior) has sent the Son as Savior of the world. (1 John 4:14). Jesus is the Father's salvation. He is the salvation of Yahweh our Savior.
In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his peity. Hebrews 5:7.
Last Updated: July 7, 2016