1. First I must apologise for missing the accusative form of "the" before the first use of theos
=God in John 1:1Ἐν ἀρχῇ ἦν ὁ λόγος, καὶ ὁ λόγος ἦν πρὸς τὸν θεόν, καὶ θεὸς ἦν ὁ λόγος
But as Asking_A_Question has pointed out this does not imply a "lesser God". Note the word order is actually:
"and the word was the God and God was the word" not the word was God. So which God does it mean - grammar strongly suggests it is the God just referred to. But there are other instances of the usage of theos
in the NT. AAQ has mentioned John 1:18: Θεὸν οὐδεὶς ἑώρακεν πώποτε· μονογενὴς θεὸς ὁ ὢν είς τὸν κόλπον τοῦ πατρὸς ἐκεῖνος ἐξηγήσατο. No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.
Note that the "God" whom no one has seen (I assume you take that to be Jehovah) does not have a preceding definite article whereas the only begotten God who has made him known (i.e. Jesus) does have a definite article. So to be consistent you would have to say that Jehovah is a lesser God compared to Jesus! I think you need to rethink your exegesis of John 1:1 and lay aside preconceived JW doctrine - look at what the text actually says.
2. Is monogene=μονογενὴς
=only begotten the same as "created" (!) The root word gennao
is used chiefly for men begetting children
. as in the Mt ch 1 genealogy. There is a Greek word for create, ktizo
, used for instance in Mk 13:19 and Rom 1:25 for God's creation. See http://biblesuite.com/greek/strongs_3439.htm
for other uses of monogene
. Note that the three uses in Luke's gospel refer to the only children of people in the gospels i.e. begotten children. Beget and create are words with different meanings. Try looking them up in a good dictionary.
"There are many "sons of God" but only one who was begotten directly by the Father." Correct!
3. "How do you translate "God" in one verse and then render "son" in another from the same word?"
There are differences between manuscripts for this verse. See http://biblehub.com/john/1-18.htm
for how the different versions handle it and the following quotation gives the manuscript information:
ο μονογενης υιος (the only-begotten son) — A C3 K X Δ Θ Π 063 0234 f1,13 28 565 700 892 1009 1010 1071 1079 1195 1216 1230 1241 1242 1253 1344 1365 1546 1646 2148 Byz Georgian mss. of Adysh (9th century)
ο μονογενης θεος (the only-begotten God) — 75 אc 33 copbo
μονογενης θεος (God [the] only-begotten) — 66 א* B C* L
A more detailed version is this:
1:18 (Münster) (IGNT Majuscules)
μονογενὴς θεὸς] p66 א* B C* L pc syrp syrh(mg) geo2 Diatessarona Valentiniansaccording to Irenaeus Valentiniansaccording to Clement Ptolemy Heracleon Origengr(2/4) Ariusaccording to Epiphanius Apostolic Constitutions Didymus Ps-Ignatius Synesiusaccording to Epiphanius Cyril1/4 WH NRtext Nv NM
ὁ μονογενὴς θεὸς] p75 א2 33 pc copbo Theodotusaccording to Clement(1/2) Clement2/3 Origengr(2/4) Eusebius3/7 Serapion1/2 Basil1/2 Gregory-Nyssa Epiphanius Cyril3/4
ὁ μονογενὴς υἱὸς] (see John 3:16; John 3:18; 1John 4:9) A C3 E F G H K Wsupp X Δ Θ Π Ψ 063 0141 f1 f13 28 157 180 205 565 579 597 700 892 1006 1009 1010 1071 1079 1195 1216 1230 1241 1242 1243 1253 1292 1342 1344 1365 1424 1505 1546 1646 2148 Byz Lect ita itaur itb itc ite itf itff2 itl vg syrc syrh syrpal arm eth geo1 slav Theodotusaccording to Clement(1/2) Theodotus Irenaeuslat(1/3) Clement1/3 Tertullian Hippolytus Origenlat(1/2) Letter of Hymenaeus Alexander Eustathius Eusebius4/7 Hegemonius Ambrosiaster Faustinus Serapion1/2 Victorinus-Rome Hilary5/7 Athanasius Titus-Bostra Basil1/2 Gregory-Nazianzus Gregory-Elvira Phoebadius Ambrose10/11 Chrysostom Synesius Jerome Theodore Augustine Nonnus Cyril1/4 Proclus Varimadum Theodoret Fulgentius Caesarius John-Damascus Ps-Priscillian ς NRmg CEI ND Riv Dio TILC
μονογενὴς υἱὸς θεοῦ] itq (copsa? θεὸς) Irenaeuslat(1/3) Ambrose1/11(vid)
ὁ μονογενὴς] vgms Diatessaron Jacob-Nisibis Ephraem Cyril-Jerusalem Ps-Ignatius Ps-Vigilius1/2 Nonnus Nestorius
Note that Sinaiticus (א) and Vaticanus (B) both have theos
=God rather than huios
4. lapwing: Where in the Bible does it say Jehovah created Jesus? Jem: Rev 3:14, Col 1:15, 16
Rev 3:14 NIV: To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation.
This states that Jesus rules God's creation not that God created Jesus!
Col 1:15, 16 NIV: The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.
This says the same as John chapter 1. All of creation was created by God in, through and for Jesus. Jesus is the firstborn
For other usage see http://biblesuite.com/greek/strongs_4416.htm
Note that again "firstborn" is used for natural firstborn begotten children such as those killed during the first Passover in Egypt.
5. "Was Thomas' expression to cancel out what the rest of what scripture states? To latch on to one expression from a man exhibiting a lack of faith is hardly proof of a doctrine."
Gulp Jem! How far and deep you have fallen. Thomas was one of the twelve apostles whose names are written on the foundations of the New Jerusalem (Rev 21:14)! And you've just rubbished him!!! Thomas is reputed to have taken the gospel further than any other apostle - to India. Also there is the small matter of Jesus' response which you chose to ignore since it conflicts with your prejudice. Then Jesus told him, "Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed."
Jn 20:29 NIV Sounds to me as Jesus was not denying Thomas' expression.