MANY people view the Trinity as “the central doctrine of the Christian religion.” According to this teaching, the Father, Son, and holy spirit are three persons in one God. Cardinal John O’Connor stated about the Trinity: “We know that it is a very profound mystery, which we don’t begin to understand.” Why is the Trinity so difficult to understand?
The Illustrated Bible Dictionary gives one reason. Speaking of the Trinity, this publication admits: “It is not a biblical doctrine in the sense that any formulation of it can be found in the Bible.” Because the Trinity is “not a biblical doctrine,” Trinitarians have been desperately looking for Bible texts—even twisting them—to find support for their teaching.
A Text That Teaches the Trinity?
One example of a Bible verse that is often misused is John 1:1. In the King James Version, that verse reads: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God [Greek, ton the·on′], and the Word was God [the·os′].” This verse contains two forms of the Greek noun the·os′ (god). The first is preceded by ton (the), a form of the Greek definite article, and in this case the word the·on′ refers to Almighty God. In the second instance, however, the·os′ has no definite article. Was the article mistakenly left out?
Why is the Trinity doctrine so difficult to understand?
The Gospel of John was written in Koine, or common Greek, which has specific rules regarding the use of the definite article. Bible scholar A. T. Robertson recognizes that if both subject and predicate have articles, “both are definite, treated as identical, one and the same, and interchangeable.” Robertson considers as an example Matthew 13:38, which reads: “The field [Greek, ho a·gros′] is the world [Greek, ho ko′smos].” The grammar enables us to understand that the world is also the field.
What, though, if the subject has a definite article but the predicate does not, as in John 1:1? Citing that verse as an example, scholar James Allen Hewett emphasizes: “In such a construction the subject and predicate are not the same, equal, identical, or anything of the sort.”
To illustrate, Hewett uses 1 John 1:5, which says: “God is light.” In Greek, “God” is ho the·os′ and therefore has a definite article. But phos for “light” is not preceded by any article. Hewett points out: “One can always . . . say of God He is characterized by light; one cannot always say of light that it is God.” Similar examples are found at John 4:24, “God is a Spirit,” and at 1 John 4:16, “God is love.” In both of these verses, the subjects have definite articles but the predicates, “Spirit” and “love,” do not. So the subjects and predicates are not interchangeable. These verses cannot mean that “Spirit is God” or “love is God.”
Identity of “the Word”?
Many Greek scholars and Bible translators acknowledge that John 1:1highlights, not the identity, but a quality of “the Word.” Says Bible translator William Barclay: “Because [the apostle John] has no definite article in front of theos it becomes a description . . . John is not here identifying the Word with God. To put it very simply, he does not say that Jesus was God.” Scholar Jason David BeDuhn likewise says: “In Greek, if you leave off the article from theos in a sentence like the one in John 1:1c, then your readers will assume you mean ‘a god.’ . . . Its absence makes theos quite different than the definite ho theos, as different as ‘a god’ is from ‘God’ in English.” BeDuhn adds: “In John 1:1, the Word is not the one-and-only God, but is a god, or divine being.” Or to put it in the words of Joseph Henry Thayer, a scholar who worked on the American Standard Version: “The Logos [or, Word] was divine, not the divine Being himself.”
Jesus made a clear distinction between him and his Father
Does the identity of God have to be “a very profound mystery”? It did not seem so to Jesus. In his prayer to his Father, Jesus made a clear distinction between him and his Father when he said: “This means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God, and of the one whom you sent forth, Jesus Christ.” (John 17:3) If we believe Jesus and understand the plain teaching of the Bible, we will respect him as the divine Son of God that he is. We will also worship Jehovah as “the only true God.”
Looking further, we see that when Jesus was dying he stated: My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me? (matt 27:46) Now, if Jesus was God almighty, would he be so distressed?
No, not at all, he would be calm, because if he was God almighty so it would not be a problem.
Lets look at how jesus felt about the resurrection in John 12:32 where he state:
“And yet I, if I am lifted up from the earth..”
Notice Jesus stated: “If I am lifted..”
He actually had doubts…God almighty would have had no doubts, which means he needed faith which proves he is not God almighty but Gods anointed one.
The Biblical text gives numerous [Hundreds upon Hundreds] examples that clearly to contradict the Trinity. While no clear Trinitarian theology can be found in the Bible the constant admonition that the Father alone is God is clear to anybody reading the text:
- “Hear O Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One” (Deuteronomy 6:4)
- “And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:” (Mark 12:29)
- “Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” (John 17:3)
- “For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”), yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live.” (1 Corinthians 8:5-6)
- “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:5)
- “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you. If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I.” (John 14:28)
- “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” (Mark 13:32)
- “Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” (John 20:17)
- “He who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall never go out of it: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will also write upon him my new name.” (Revelation 3:12)
- “But he (Stephen), being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.” (Acts 7:55-56)
- “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.” (Colossians 1:15)
- “Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For he “has put everything under his feet.” Now when it says that “everything” has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all.” (1 Corinthians 15:12-28)
- “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, [one] like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.” (Daniel 7:13)
From these and other texts it becomes clear that:
- Jesus prays to God. (John 17:1-3)
- Jesus has faith in God. (Hebrews 2:17,18, Hebrews 3:2)
- Jesus is a servant of God. (Acts 3:13)
- Jesus does not know things God knows. (Mark 13:32, Revelation 1:1)
- Jesus worships God. (John 4:22)
- Jesus has one who is God to him. (Revelation 3:12)
- Jesus is in subjection to God. (1 Corinthians 5:28)
- Jesus’ head is God. (1 Corinthians 11:1)
- Jesus has reverent submission, fear, of God. (Hebrews 5:7)
- Jesus is given lordship by God. (Acts 2:36)
- Jesus is exalted by God. (Acts 5:31)
- Jesus is made high priest by God. (Hebrews 5:10)
- Jesus is given authority by God. (Philippians 2:9)
- Jesus is given kingship by God. (Luke 1:32,33)
- Jesus is given judgment by God. (Acts 10:42)
- God raised [Jesus] from the dead”. (Acts 2:24, Romans 10.9, 1 Cor 15:15)
- Jesus is at the right hand of God. (Mark 16:19, Luke 22:69, Acts 2:33, Romans 8:34)
- Jesus is the one human mediator between the one God and man. (1 Tim 2:5)
- God put everything, except Himself, under Jesus. (1 Cor 15:24-28)
- Jesus did not think being “equal with God” should be grasped at. (Philippians 2:6)
Ask your self, is God a God of Order, and logic? Or Chaos and confusion.? How can anyone accept the Trinity in good faith? God must be worshipped in truth, Jesus said: “God is a Spirit, and those worshiping him must worship with spirit and truth.” (John 4:24) But why do so many people fail to understand?
A person may hear the sounds of someone speaking to him. He may even note the tone of voice. But of what use would that be to him if he did not understand the meaning of the words being spoken? (1 Cor. 14:9) In a similar way, thousands heard what Jesus was saying. He even spoke to them in a language that they could understand. However, not all of them understood the meaning of his words. For this reason, Jesus told his audience: “Listen to me, all of you, and understand the meaning.”—Mark 7:14.
Why did many fail to understand the meaning of what Jesus said? For the same reason people think Jesus is God Almighty. Some simply have preconceived opinions and wrong motives. Jesus said of such ones: “You skillfully disregard the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition.” (Mark 7:9) People like these do not really try to get the meaning of the Bible. They do not want to change their ways and views. Their ears may be open, but their hearts are tightly shut.