This question is a category error; the premise of the question is such that, either a "yes" or "no" answer implies additional information that is not correct. To say that Buddha = God, and Buddha != God, are both wrong. Try to understand.
In Abrahamic faiths, God is the ultimate authority; any action that contradicts the will of God is sin, and can be punished by God. In Buddhism, the Buddha is called "the Blessed One" and "perfectly enlightened", "most excellent among persons" -- the first of the Three Jewels. Any action that contradicts the dharma he taught (which coincidentally is the second Jewel) is unskillful, and leads to suffering.
There is nonetheless a radical difference between Buddha, and God in monotheism, because they have a radically different basis of authority. In monotheism, God deliberately caused the physical universe to exist, by giving a spoken order; just like a bronze-age warlord could cause a city or fortress or palace to exist by ordering his troops and servants. In monotheism, God is all-seeing and immortal, and has the ability to send curses, cause plagues and take life. Therefore, God must be unconditionally obeyed.
The Buddha, on the other hand, was just an ordinary human, who revealed to us the wisdom he had accumulated in countless, infinitely-many past lives. He had previously lived (at various times) as a monk, philosopher, king, commoner, as various kinds of animal, and as a spirit in the worlds of the devas. Thus, he had ample qualifications to share with us the Four Noble Truths, before he died his last death, never to return.
The Buddha never threatened to take away life, or advocated for violence; he always advised against war, or use of the death penalty, whenever a ruler asked for his advise. He never attempted to coerce conversions from the unwilling, with the threat of punishment in the afterlife, although he did tell people there was a hell waiting for them if they committed acts that they already knew were wrong. He was understanding and sympathetic whenever a person did not accept his claims of Buddhahood; he advised lay followers to never trust a teacher until they have thoroughly evaluated that teacher's honest mode of living, mental stability, compassion towards others, and dispassion towards his own interests. He understood that, for the ordinary human without memory of past lives, naturalism, and skepticism of supernatural claims, is highly appropriate.
The teachings of the Buddha included a very strict moral code for the monks of his order. Poverty, celibacy, strict vegetarianism, teetotalism, non-violence, refraining from use of any kind of jewelry, stylish clothing, fragrances or cosmetics. All standard fare for ascetics in most religions. It is not a life for everyone. But the Buddha taught highly practical advise for people in every walk of life: kings, commoners, merchants and professionals, women and children. The Noble Eightfold Path, which leads to an end of all suffering, touches on every part of one's life.
A major part of the Eightfold path is attained through the use of mindful meditation. This can be practiced with the thought of focusing the mind on gods, spirits, ancestors and the like, but mindfulness, rightfully understood, is the decision to not let uninvited thought processes initiate themselves. It is the exercise of choosing to think about, either nothing at all, or only one thing at a time. Chants and breathing exercises are an end to that goal; completely shutting out foolish, selfish, or fearful thoughts, or considering them one at a time. If an idea occurs to you that is obviously bad, do not attack it, and do not feel bad about it; just choose to passively forget it.
You do not have to be Buddhist to do this; modern psychology, psychiatry, and yoga/fitness professionals are skilled in using these techniques, and they are no less authentic for having been adopted in a secular, Western context.
Although the Buddha passed on, the he set into motion the wheel of dharma, by sharing and propagating the laws which he discovered. It is said that these laws, once universally known, will lead to the enlightenment of all sentient beings.