Your Throne O God…


Hebrews Chapter 1, verses 8 and 9:


But to the Son  He says:  "Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your Kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore O God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness above Your companions”


This passage is the clearest Testimony to the Deity of Jesus Christ, as attested to by God the Father. It is for this very reason, why it has been under attack, on how it should really read. The verse begins, “προς δε”, where the preposition has the meaning of, “in reference to”; as it does in verse 7, when used for the created angels. “but, in reference to THE Son (τον υιον)…”


How are we to understand the words, “ο θρονος σου ο θεος”? Is “ο θεος” here to be understood as the predicate, in the nominative, which could then give the reading, “Your throne is God”. Or, where the nominative is used for the vocative, in direct address, as in most Versions, “Your throne O God”? If this read, “ο θρονος σου ο κύριος”, “your throne O Lord”. There would be no dispute as to how it should read, and everyone would accept that it is in the vocative, as a direct address by the Father to Jesus Christ. Because we here have Jesus Christ as “ο θεος”, literally, “THE GOD”, that there are objections.


The oldest Greek manuscript for this passage, the Papyri P46, about 200 AD, has an interesting reading for verse 8. Instead of “βασιλειας σου” (your Kingdom), this manuscript, along with the Codices Sinaiticus and Vaticanus (4th century), read, “βασιλειας αὐτοῦ” (His Kingdom). Which is a change in the pronoun, from the 2nd to the 3rd person, which here refers to “the Son”, and His Kingdom. This reading has no textual support in any manuscripts or Versions of the Old Testament, from where this passage is taken. However, it does confirm that we are to understand the words in the vocative, as a direct address to Jesus Christ, by God the Father.


Almost all of the English Versions of the Bible, read the vocative,, though this can be seen as “biased”, as they do believe in the Deity of Jesus Christ.


The Greek Old Testament, the Septuagint, made from the Hebrew before the time Jesus Christ was Born,  reads, “ο θρονος σου ο θεος”. The three English editions, by Brenton, Thomson, and Albert Pietersma and Benjamin G. Wright, also read: “your throne O God”. The Latin Vulgate by Jerome, made from the Hebrew, reads, “Sedes tua Deus in sæculum sæculi”, which is in the vocative, “your throne O God, is forever and ever”. Likewise the Syriac Peshitta Version, made in the 2nd century, also from the Hebrew, where it reads, “Thy throne, O God”. Also vocative.


There are many instances in the Septuagint, where the nominative is used for the vocative, as it is in Attic Greek, from which we the Koine Greek, which is what the New Testament is written in.

A very good example is in John 20:28, where Thomas says to Jesus: “ο κυριος μου και ο θεος μου” (my Lord and my God), which is in the nominative, used as an address (ειπεν αυτω, said to Him) so taking the place of the vocative.


It is important that we look at the evidence, from those who do not regard Jesus Christ as Almighty God, which is what this passage in context, clearly teaches.


These words in Hebrews 1, are taken from Psalm 45:6-7, which is a Prophecy of the Coming Messiah. In the Jewish Aramaic Targum on the Psalm, the words are used as a direct address to Jehovah, “The throne of Thy majesty, O Jehovah, abideth for ever and ever.” (Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges).


The Hebrew scholar, Aquila, who published a Greek Version of the Old Testament, in the middle of the 2nd century A.D., translates the Hebrew, by the Greek, “ο θρονος σου θεε”, which is undoubtedly the vocative, “Your throne, O God”. (Fredrick Field, Origen Hexapla, vol. II, pp. 162-163). It is clear, that as early as the 2nd century, the Hebrew was understood as the vocative, and not the nominative. The 11th century French Rabbi, Shlomo Yitzchaki, also known as Rashi, in his comments on this verse, renders it, “Your throne, O judge: Your throne, O prince and judge, shall exist forever and ever” (


Rashi, here takes “אֱלֹהִים, as “judge”, as he would not apply the words to The Messiah, but to an earthly king. However, it is clear that he understood the words as an address in the vocative.


The Jewish Bible online, reads: “Thy throne, O God” ( As is the reading of another Jewish Bible, “Thy throne, O God” (Dr A Benisch; Jewish School and Family Bible, Vol.IV).


In verse 9, the words, “ὁ θεὸς ὁ θεός σου”, is also in the vocative, and should read: “O God, your God”. This is how it was understood in the Greek Old Testament by Symmachus, published in the latter half of the 2nd century. (see, Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges). In this verse also Aquila uses the vocative, θεέ. (Fredrick Field, Origen Hexapla, vol. II, pp. 162-163)


The New Testament by the Unitarian, Dr George Noyes, reads: “but of the Son: ‘Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever”. He would have denied the Deity of Jesus Christ, yet it is clear from his own translation, that God the Father here calls Jesus Christ, GOD. In John 1:1, this version reads, “and the Word was God”. And, in John 1:18, “No one hath ever seen God; the only begotten God”. Clear references to the Deity of Jesus Christ, by a Unitarian!


Another Unitarian, Dr George Winer, also admits that in Hebrews 1:8, the vocative is to be understood.


The nominative (with the article) is sometimes used in an address, particularly in calling or commanding, thus taking the place of the vocative…H. i.8” (A Treatise on the Grammar of New Testament Greek, p.227)


The Jehovah’s Witnesses, in both their Kingdom Interlinear New Testaments, 1969 and 1985, read in the English in the right-hand column, “God is your throne forever”. However, in the literal English translation under the Greek text, it reads: “the throne of you the God”. In the other Greek Interlinear that the JW’s publish, The Emphatic Diaglott, it is even more interesting. In verse 8, the literal English translation under the Greek text, it reads: “concerning but the Son; the throne of thee the God for the age [of the age]”. And in the English version in the right-hand column, “But to the Son, Thy Throne, O God is for the age”. And, for verse 9, “therefore thy God anointed thee, O God” (right-hand column). Both verses this translation has the vocative. These reading actually contradict their own theology, that rejects the Deity of Jesus Christ. Not only is the Deity of Jesus Christ here asserted, but, it is God the Father Who addresses Jesus as GOD.


In verse 6, we read of God the Father Commanding the Worship of Jesus Christ.


But speaking of the time when He once more brings His Firstborn into the world, He says, "And let all God's angels Worship Him.”


There is no equivalent passage in the Hebrew Old Testament. However, in the Greek Old Testament, the Septuagint (LXX), it reads in Deuteronomy 32:43, “ Rejoice, ye heavens, with Him, and let all the angels of God worship Him”. The Hebrew Masoretic Text (MT) reads: “Sing aloud, O ye nations, of His people”. The Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) 4QDeutq, reads: “Rejoice, O heavens, together with Him; and bow down to Him all you gods”. And, again in the LXX of Psalm 96:7, we read, “ Let all that worship graven images be ashamed, who boast of their idols; worship Him, all ye His angels”. The DSS is incomplete here.


In verses 10-12, the Father continues to address Jesus Christ:


And, You, Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands; they will perish, but you remain; and they will all grow old like a garment; like a cloak you will fold them up, and they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will not fail’


The Greek for “Lord” is “κύριε”, which is vocative, “O Lord”. These words are taken from Psalm 102:25-27, which is spoken of  אל(God, verse 24), and addressed to Him as The Creator. The Father, by taking these words, and using them for Jesus Christ, is saying that “The Son” is the Actual Creator of the heavens and earth. Not just some secondary, or intermediate. When we read in places like Hebrews 1:2, and John 1:3, where the Greek preposition “διά” is used for Creation. It is not to be understood as “agency”, as though the Father was Creating “through” Jesus Christ. But, as the original use of the preposition, “between, two”, as in Homer, “mutual operation, with one another”. Which agrees with the use of the plural in Genesis 1:26, “let US make man in OUR Image”, etc. And, Job 35:10, where it is literally, “God my Makers (עֹשָׂי, mas, plural)”.


We have Two distinct “Persons” Who are both equally GOD. Both, the Jehovah’s Witnesses, who deny the Deity of Jesus Christ; and Unitarians who deny there is more than One Person in the Godhead, are here refuted.