"He who hates me hates my Father as well. If I had not done among them what no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. But now they have seen these miracles, and yet they have hated both me and my Father." (John 15:23-24)

This statement by Jesus to his close disciples indicates his intimate relationship with the Supreme Being, as well as his mission to serve and please God, which included performing miracles.

Jesus' statement also clarifies that Jesus is not God. The term "as well" - translated from the Greek word καί (kai) - clearly indicates Jesus is referring to two individuals: Himself and his Father, the Supreme Being.

To say "as well" assumes another individual. Also the use of "my" - from the Greek word ἐγώ (egō) - indicates a possessive, which requires a distinct individual. The word "both" in "both me and my Father" - also translated from καί (kai) - also indicates two individuals.

If Jesus was God, then he would have simply said "I am the Father."

But he didn't. He clearly indicates the existence of two individuals. Therefore, we cannot accept the current ecclesiastical sectarian teaching that Jesus is the Supreme Being.

This concept that Jesus is the Supreme Being was borne during the Nicene councils - driven by the Roman Emperor Constantine, who wanted to establish their sectarian institution as the only bonafide religion in order to organize and maintain control over the masses among the regions of Europe and the middle east. Constantine pressured the bishops appointed to his council to issue an edict that Jesus was in fact the Supreme Being.

The Nicene council's edict, the Nicene Creed, reflected this as it served to muddy the distinction between Jesus and the Supreme Being and the Holy Ghost. The conclusion was that Jesus was God in the form of the "Son."

And yes, Jesus is surely God's representative, and can thus be recognized as such. But to eliminate their individuality and the nature of their relationship is to offend both the Supreme Being and Jesus.

The reality is that Jesus is involved in a loving relationship with the Supreme Being. And that loving relationship produced loving service in the form of Jesus' teachings and miracles.

And because Jesus' mission was to teach what the Supreme Being wanted him to teach, those who offend Jesus will also offend the Supreme Being, because the Supreme Being was behind Jesus' activities.

This might be compared to how a president of a country might feel if his ambassador was insulted by a foreign government. The ambassador is acting on behalf of the president. So to insult or hurt the ambassador would be to insult the president.

This doesn't mean the ambassador is the president. They are still two distinct individuals. But one is acting on the others behalf.

This is the nature of the practical relationship between Jesus and the Supreme Being. Jesus explains this here.

Jesus also discusses the offensiveness that comes about when God's representative is dismissed, criticized or otherwise harmed:
"If I had not done among them what no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. But now they have seen these miracles, and yet they have hated both me and my Father."
In this case, the word "sin" relates to offensiveness. This is consistent with the use of the Greek word ἁμαρτία (hamartia), which can mean, among other things, "an offense" according to the lexicon.

Jesus is thus explaining the nature of the offensiveness of those Pharisees and Sadducees who heard Jesus' teachings and saw his miracles, and yet still proceeded to criticize him and eventually promoted his arrest by the High Priest who delivered him to the Roman court.

Once they heard his teachings - which were coming from the Supreme Being - and saw those miracles connected with those teachings, their offensiveness was not only to Jesus but to the Supreme Being. This is because Jesus' teachings and miracles came from the Supreme Being.

This is confirmed by other statements by Jesus, such as:
"For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of Him who sent me." (John 6:38)
"My teaching is not my own. It comes from Him who sent me." (John 7:16)
"Yes, you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own, but He who sent me is true. You do not know Him" (John 7:28)
These and many other statements indicate that Jesus was acting on behalf of the Supreme Being.

Jesus' miracles also came from God. Jesus clarified this as well:
"I have shown you many great miracles from the Father." (John 10:32)
These statements clearly indicate that Jesus was not God, and Jesus was not acting alone. He is God's representative, and the Supreme Being empowered his activities.

Yet many of those who supposedly follow Jesus dismiss that Jesus was acting on behalf of God. They proclaim that Jesus is God, thereby removing the very person from the equation that Jesus cared so much about and constantly spoke of. This is also an offense against Jesus and God. Why? Because Jesus came to teach us to love God and serve God. Just consider his clear statement in this regard:
"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'" (Matthew 7:21-23)
Why is Jesus so angry with those who are worshiping Jesus (i.e., "Lord, Lord") and even performing miracles in Jesus' name?

Because they are ignoring his beloved, the Supreme Being. Jesus is offended by those who dismiss God when they proclaim Jesus is God. When they say that "God died for my sins" they are saying that "God died." They are also saying that God has to come under the laws of material nature - that He is subject to the rules of sacrifice and has to sacrifice for our sins. This is offensive against both Jesus and God, because God is never subject to the rules of sacrifice. God is always in control. And God never dies.

In fact, the Supreme Being can forgive our sins quite simply: All we have to do is ask for His forgiveness.

This is why Jesus suggested that we pray to God and ask for His forgiveness for our sins, in what is now referred to as the "Lord's prayer":
"Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us." (Luke 11:4)
Why would Jesus ask us to pray for forgiveness if he died for our sins?

The fact is, God can immediately forgive our self-centeredness, and the many offenses that we have made against Him by our simply asking Him. He doesn't have to become a man and die for our sins in order for our sins to be forgiven.

We can simply pray to God and He will forgive us because this is His nature. God is the most merciful. He is the most compassionate. This is because He loves us unconditionally.

But what we should also be praying for is a change of heart. Asking for forgiveness for our offenses and self-centeredness is important, but we should also be asking the Supreme Being to help us change from being self-centered to being God-centered. From focused upon doing our will to focused upon doing His will.

This is what Jesus was trying to communicate when he said above:
"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven."
Doing "the will of my Father who is in heaven" is performing loving service to God. It is doing what God wants rather than what I want.

This, in fact, is heaven. It doesn't matter where we are physically. We are in heaven when we are doing God's will, and we are in hell when we are doing our own will.

This is because doing God's will is our natural position. We were each created by God to be one of His loving caregivers. But because love requires freedom, He also gave us the freedom to love Him or not. Those of us who decided not to love Him were tossed into the physical world of consequences, where we virtually act out our self-centered desires within these temporary physical bodies.

We must also understand that the suffering that takes place in this physical world is a virtual type of suffering - that takes place for these temporary bodies. It can be compared with a video game in which the computer icon can be shot and killed but the person playing the computer game can turn off the computer and walk away.

We are each eternal spiritual beings, temporarily occupying these physical bodies. And the various events that take place against these bodies take place as consequences to help us learn and grow. This is the nature of the physical world.

It is not as if the Supreme Being has lost control over the physical world - as many ecclesiastical sectarian teachers teach. It is not as if Satan has overpowered God and wrestled control of the earth away from God. God is in complete control over the physical world. He has simply created a world of consequences, where the temporary physical body we wear receives the same suffering we previously inflicted onto others - either within this physical body or a former one.

This is a perfect system, which allows each of us to gradually understand the meaning of caring for others versus self-centered behavior. In other words, this virtual physical world was designed by God to rehabilitate us - to teach us to love again.

And we can at any time resume our real identities as God's loving caregivers regardless of the physical body we occupy. We can wake up from our self-centered slumber and begin to live for the pleasure of the Supreme Being. This and only this will truly make us happy because this is our natural position.

This is why Jesus also suggested we pray:
"Father, hallowed be Your Name, Your kingdom come. May your will be done on earth as it is in heaven." (Luke 11:2)

(For a translation of Jesus' statements from the Gospel of John without sectarian institutional influence, see the Devotional Translation  - translated from the original Greek texts.)