Is the Trinity Necessary for Salvation with J. Dan Gill

to listen to this show click here

During over three decades of ministry, Tennessee pastor J. Dan Gill has observed a tendency within evangelicalism to preach the gospel without telling people about the doctrine of the Trinity. In fact, large crusades that Billy Graham preaches at do not inform people about these matters at all. Is this modern tendency good news or bad news? Some, in their zeal to uphold their church’s traditions have declared that those who do not believe in the doctrine of the Trinity or the dual natures of Christ are not Christians. Who is right?

In his authentic and endearing southern style, pastor Gill brings us to the Scriptures, especially the book of Acts, in order to decipher an answer based on the evangelism of the first Christians. In the end, Dan assures us that we are not stuck between loosing our mind or loosing our soul as the famous quip has it:

If you try to understand the Trinity, you lose your mind
If you don’t believe in it, you lose your soul

Advertisements

34 Responses to Is the Trinity Necessary for Salvation with J. Dan Gill

  1. Tim says:

    I think that the podcast got cut off about three minutes before the end. Pastor Gill was giving an answer and he was cut off midstream.

    That said, this was a fascinating and important discussion. By layering all these complicated doctrines (trinitarianism, dispensationalism, Calvinism, etc.) onto people for salvation, we are rejecting the simplicity of the NT gospel message and adding burdens that the NT disciples never intended.

    We should not forget that there were complex theological systems in place at that time (Greek philosophy, Philo’s writings, etc.) and there is not a hint of that kind of thinking in the NT.

    Very good presentation!

  2. sean says:

    Tim, sorry about the show cutting off. Something must have gone wrong during the upload. I have corrected the problem and the whole show is up there now.

  3. Xavier says:

    “The crux of the matter lies in how we understand the term Son of God…The title Son of God is not in itself an expression of personal Deity or the expression of metaphysical distinctions within the Godhead. Indeed, to be a ‘Son of God’ one has to be a being who is not God! It is a designation for a creature indicating a special relationship with God. In particular, it denotes God’s representative, God’s vice-regent. It is a designation of kingship, identifying the king as God’s Son…In my view the term ‘Son of God’ ultimately converges on the term ‘image of God’ which is to be understood as God’s representative, the one in whom God’s spirit dwells, and who is given stewardship and authority to act on God’s behalf…It seems to me to be a fundamental mistake to treat statements in the Fourth Gospel about the Son and his relationship with the Father as expressions of inner-Trinitarian relationships. But this kind of systematic misreading of the Fourth Gospel seems to underlie much of social Trinitarian thinking…It is a common but patent misreading of the opening of John’s Gospel to read it as if it said, ‘In the beginning was the Son, and the Son was with God, and the Son was God’ (John 1:1). What has happened here is the substitution of Son for Word (Gk. logos) and thereby the Son is made a member of the Godhead which existed from the beginning.” Colin Brown, Trinity and Incarnation: Towards a Contemporary Orthodoxy,” Ex Auditu, 7, 1991, pp. 87-89.

  4. Tim says:

    I would personally use John 1:1 (as well as the birth account in Luke) as a refutation of the “eternal Sonship” plank of the trinity doctrine. When one plank falls, it seems like the rest will come tumbling down.

    I honestly don’t understand why people feel the need to add onto what is the very simple plan of salvation that is articulated in the NT.

    • Xavier says:

      Tim, how does Jn 1.1 refute the “eternal Sonship”, at least for trinis?

      If anything, don’t you think that this is their main calling card when they misrepresent it as Colin Brown suggests above:

      ‘In the beginning was the Son, and the Son was with God, and the Son was God’

      In doing this they also change the meaning of “God” within the sentence. Because the first time it says “God” they read “Father”, and the second time they HAVE to read “God” as the Son. Don’t you think?

      • Tim says:

        It does not refute it for trinitarians, in their arguments, but they make a critical error in reading this verse.

        As you argue, it does not say “the Son”, it says “the Word.” It is their main calling card because they make the inferential leap.

        Reading the text as it is written seems clear to me that John did not mean to say, “In the beginning was the Son …” or, “In the beginning was Jesus …”

        We have to ask, “what does it NOT say” and go from there.

      • will says:

        don’t he think…..don’t anyone think .usually not….the trinity is a lie…you can debate it all you want..still won’t become the truth

  5. Xavier says:

    Agreed Tim. Here’s another excellent discussion on the grammar of John 1:1 by Jason BeDuhn:

    http://lists.ibiblio.org/pipermail/b-greek/2003-July/025847.html

    What about John 1:1 in the NWT?

    Well, I will let Greek Scholar Jason BeDuhn from the Northern Arizona
    University answer this one:

    “The Greek phrase is theos en ho logos, which translated word for word is “a god was the word.”

    Greek has only a definite article, like our the, it does not have an indefeinite article, like our a or an. If a noun is definite, it has the definite article ho. If a noun is indefinite, no article is used. In the phrase from John 1:1, ho logos is “the word.” If it was written simply logos, without the definite article ho, we would have to translate it as
    “a word”. So we are not really “inserting” an indefinite article when we translate Greek nouns without the definite article into English, we are
    simply obeying rules of English grammar that tell us that we cannot say “Snoopy is dog,” but must say “Snoopy is a dog.”

    Now in English we simply say “God”; we do not say “The God.” But in Greek, when you mean to refer to the one supreme God, instead of one of the many other beings that were called “gods,” you would have to say “The God”: ho theos. Even a monotheistic Christian, who beleives there is only one God and no others, would be forced to say in Greek “The
    God,” as John and Paul and the other writers of the New Testament normally do. If you leave off the article in a phrase like John 1:1, then you are saying “a god.” (There are some exceptions to this rule: Greek has what are called noun cases, which means the nouns change form depending on how they are used in a sentence. So, if you want to say “of God,” which is theou, you don’t need the article. But in the nominative case, which is the one in John 1:1, you have to have the article.)

    So what does John mean by saying “the word was a god”? He is classifying Jesus in a specific category of beings. There are plants and animals and humans and gods, and so on. By calling the Word “a god,” John wants to tell his readers that the Word(which becomes Jesus when it takes flesh)belongs to the divine class of things. Notice the word order: “a god was the word.” We can’t say it like this in English, but you can in Greek. The subject can be after the verb and the object before the verb, the opposite of how we do it in English (subject-verb-object).

    Research has shown that when ancient Greek writers put a object-noun first in a sentence like John 1:1 (a be-verb sentence: x is y), without the definite article, they are telling us that the subject belongs to the class represented by the object-noun: :”The car is a Volkswagen.” In English we would accomplish the same thing by using what we call predicate adjectives. “John is a smart person” = “John is smart.” So we would tend to say “The word was divine,” rather than “The word was a god.” That is how I would translate this phrase. “The word was a god” is more literal, and an improvement over “The word was God,” but it raises more problems, since to a modern reader it implies polytheism.

    No one in John’s day would have understood the phrase to mean “The word was God” – the language does not convey that sense, and conceptually it is difficult to grasp such an idea, especially since that author has just said that the word was with God. Someone is not with himself, he is with some other. John clearly differentiates between God from the Word. The latter becomes flesh and is seen; the former cannot be seen. What is the Word? John says it was the agent through whom God made the world. He starts his gospel “In the beginning…” to remind us of Genesis 1. How does God create in Genesis? He speaks words that make things come into existence. So the Word is God’s creative power and plan and activity. It is not God himself, but it is not really totally separate from God either. It occupies a kind of ambiguous status. That is why a monotheist like John can get away with calling it “a god” or “divine” without becoming a polytheist. This divine thing does not act on its own,
    however, does take on a kind of distinct identity, and in becoming flesh brings God’s will and plan right down face to face with humans.

    I hope this helps.

    Best wishes

    Jason Beduhn
    Northern Arizona University
    Department of Humanities Arts and Religion

  6. In the discussion about the correct translation of John 1.1c, we should understand that traditionalists (those who believe that Jesus is God) argue that the common translation of it–“and the Word was God,” means that Jesus is God because of v. 14–“and the Word became flesh.”

    Jason Beduhn has some truth in his comment above. But he does as Philo did, distinguishing a difference in meaning between theos with the article and theos without it. Philo claimed that the former always referred to God and the latter only to the Logos.

    After I explain this in my book, The Restitution of Jesus Christ (2008), in the section on John 1.1c, I further state on p. 132 concerning the Greek New Testament (NT), “But modern scholarship has for some time rejected these supposed distinctions between the articular and non-articular theos. And it has been shown that there are no such distinctions in Hellenistic Greek writings, either. Murray Harris [Theos as God, p. 37] cites numerous NT examples to show that theos and ho theos are nearly always interchangeable in the NT, both of them referring only to God the Father.”

    Authorities have centered this discussion on the two JBL articles on the anarthrous theos in the NT, but especially John 1.1c, by E.C. Colwell (1933), who endorses the common translation of it, “and the word was God,” and J.B. Harner (1973), who renders it “the Word had the same nature as God.” Harner endorses the similar translation in the NEB and REB, “what God was, the Word was.” Neither of these renderings effectively identify either the Word or Jesus Christ as “God.”. Most distinguished NT scholars who have entered this discussion have sided with Harner against Colwell. Harris (pp. 70-71) concurs with Harner, yet strangely clings to the common rendering.

    Servetus the Evangelical

    • Jaco says:

      That’s why I like these topics – you can always return and add/reply.

      Mr. Zarley, I have to disagree with you here. You know I am also a BU, but linguistically in the current construct, the anarthrous predicate theos can be translated “a god.” I do not agree with this, since I do not believe that a personal word as a second god existed with Yahweh. Secondly, to limit the translation to the indefinite construct (a god) does not reallise a more profound qualitative nuance and, in addition to it, creates a theological dilemma.

      In an online debate between BeDuhn and Hommel, BeDuhn later does agree to the more qualitative nuance of the anarthrous predicate theos. He does maintain his position, though – and quite rightly so – that the qualitativeness does not extend beyond just that, namely, divinity.

      Colwell’s rule is applied in reverse here. It does not hold. Other anarthrous constructs you might be referring to are not in the predicate form, but most likely accusative or nominative. If not, please correct me here.

      Regards,

      Jaco

      • Xavier says:

        Following some worthwhile quotes from NET Bible online and BeDuhn:

        Colwell’s Rule is often invoked to support the translation of θεός (qeos) as definite (“God”) rather than indefinite (“a god”) here. However, Colwell’s Rule merely permits, but does not demand, that a predicate nominative ahead of an equative verb be translated as definite rather than indefinite.

        Furthermore, Colwell’s Rule did not deal with a third possibility, that the anarthrous predicate noun may have more of a qualitative nuance when placed ahead of the verb. A definite meaning for the term is reflected in the traditional rendering “the word was God.” From a technical standpoint, though, it is preferable to see a qualitative aspect to anarthrous θεός in John 1:1c (ExSyn 266-69).

        Translations like the NEB, REB, and Moffatt are helpful in capturing the sense in John 1:1c, that the Word was fully deity in essence (just as much God as God the Father). However, in contemporary English “the Word was divine” (Moffatt) does not quite catch the meaning since “divine” as a descriptive term is not used in contemporary English exclusively of God.

        The translation “what God was the Word was” is perhaps the most nuanced rendering, conveying that everything God was in essence, the Word was too. This points to unity of essence between the Father and the Son without equating the persons. However, in surveying a number of native speakers of English, some of whom had formal theological training and some of whom did not, the editors concluded that the fine distinctions indicated by “what God was the Word was” would not be understood by many contemporary readers. Thus the translation “the Word was fully God” was chosen because it is more likely to convey the meaning to the average English reader that the Logos (which “became flesh and took up residence among us” in John 1:14 and is thereafter identified in the Fourth Gospel as Jesus) is one in essence with God the Father.

        What is the word?

        “Greek has only a definite article, like our the; it does not have an indefinite article, like our a or an. So, generally speaking, a Greek definite noun will have a form of the definite article (ho), which will become “the” in English. A Greek indefinite noun will appear without the definite article, and will be properly rendered in English with “a” or “an.” We are not “adding a word” when we translate Greek nouns that do not have the definite article as English nouns with the indefinite article. We are simply obeying the rules of English grammar that tell us that we cannot say “Snoopy is dog,” but may say “Snoopy is a dog.” For example, in John 1:1c, the clause we are investigating, ho logos is “the word,” as all translations accurately have it. If it was written simply logos, without the definite article ho, we would have to translate it as “a word.”

        Similarly, when we have a form of ho theos, as we do in John 1:1b and 1:2, we are dealing with a definite noun that we would initially (“lexically”) translate as “the god”; but if it is written simply theos, as it is in John 1:1c, it is an indefinite noun that would normally be translated as “a god.” To complete our translation into English, we need to take into consideration the fact that English has both a common noun “god” and a proper noun “God.” We use the proper noun “God” like a name, without either a definite or indefinite article, even though a name is a definite noun. As a definite noun, “God” corresponds to the Greek ho theos (lexically “the god”), which also is used often as the proper noun “God” in both the New Testament and other Greek literature from the same time. So in John 1:1b and 1:2 it is perfectly accurate to drop the “the” from “god” and say that the Word was “with God” (literally “with the god”). But what about the indefinite theos in John 1:1c? This does not correspond to the English definite proper noun “God,” but to the indefinite noun “a god.”

        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’…

        Having introduced “God” and “the Word,” John would use the definite article to help his readers keep track of the fact that he is still talking about the same God and the same Word. But having mentioned “God” once in 1:1b (“the word was with God”), John does not use the definite article again with theos until 1:2 (“this one was with God”), skipping right over the theos of 1:1c (“the word was a god”). This middle theos, we are left to conclude, is not exactly the same thing as the “God” of 1:1b and 1:2.
        If John had wanted to say “the Word was God,” as so many English translations have it, he could have very easily done so by simply adding the definite article “the” (ho) to the word “god” (theos), making it “the god” and therefore ‘God’…

        The culprit appears to be the King James translators. As I said before, these translators were much more familiar and comfortable with their Latin Vulgate than they were with the Greek New Testament. They were used to understanding passages based on reading them in Latin, and this worked its way into their reading of the same passages in Greek. Latin has no articles, either definitive or indefinite. So the definitive noun “God” and the indefinite noun “god” look precisely the same in Latin, and in John 1:1-2 one would see three occurrences of what appeared to be the same word, rather than the two distinct forms used in Greek. Whether a Latin noun is definitive or indefinite is determined solely by context, and that means it is open to interpretation. The interpretation of John 1:1-2 that is now found in most English translations was well entrenched in the thinking of the King James translators based on a millennium of reading only the Latin, and empowered their close attention to the more subtle wording of the Greek. After the fact—after the King James translation was the dominant version and etched in the minds of English-speaking Bible readers—various arguments were put forward to support the KJV translation of John 1:1c as ‘the Word was God’, and to justify its repetition in more recent, and presumably more accurate translations. But none of these arguments withstands close scrutiny…
        …we know that ‘the Word’ is the subject of the third clause of John 1:1 because in the immediately preceding two clauses ‘the Word’ was the subject under discussion.
        John can afford the risk of making subject and predicate nouns formally identical because context differentiates them. So there is no validity in the argument that John was forced to omit the definitie article from ‘god’ to allow the reader to identify the subject of the clause…
        Bruce Metzger mistakenly writes that ‘Colwell’s Rule’ “necessitates the rendering ‘…and the Word was God’” (Metzger 1953, page 75). Sakae Kubo and Walter F. Specht, in their book So Many Versions? Twentieth-century English Versions of the Bible, say ‘it is true that the Greek does not have the article before ‘God’ here. However, since in this verse in Greek theos (God) is a predicate noun and precedes the verb and subject, it is definitive, since a definitive predicate noun when it precedes the verb never takes an article in Greek’ (Kubo and Specht, page 99). Even Colwell recorded fifteen examples from the New Testament that go against Kubo and Specht’s ‘never’. Since many Bible readers rely on the opinions of people like Metzger, Kubo, and Specht, it is easy to understand why the public remains ill-informed about assessing Bible translation…

        …Greek has a particular way of expressing the nature or character of something that employs predicate nouns before the verb and without the article, just as in John 1:1. The nature or character of ho logos (“the Word”) is theos (“divine”)…

        This brings us back to John 1:1. [John Harner, in his article, “Qualitative Anarthrous Predicate Nouns: Mark 15:39 and John 1:1,” 1973, pp. 85 and 87] suggests that John was not interested in definiteness or indefiniteness, but in character and quality…I think that the qualitative force of the predicate is so prominent that the noun cannot be regarded a definite. . . . So if the meaning of “the Word was a god,” or “the Word was a divine being” is that the Word belongs to the category of divine beings, then we could translate the phrase as “the Word was divine.” The meaning is the same in either case, and is summed up well by Harner as “ho logos…had the nature of theos” (Harner, page 87).

        Some early Christians maintained their monotheism by believing that the one God simply took on a human form and came to earth—in effect, God the Father was born and crucified as Jesus. They are entitled to their belief, but it cannot be derived legitimately from the Gospel according to John. John is not describing something like the Hindu concept of an avatar, such as when the god Vishnu is thought to periodically take a mortal form to accomplish things on earth…What then is the logos?…

        John says it was the agent through which God (the Father) made the world…How does God create in Gen 1.1? He speaks words that make things come into existence. So the word is God’s creative power and plan and activity…theos in John 1.1 is used qualitative [“and the word was divine”]…by placing theos first in a be-verb sentence, without the article [ho=the], John is trying to stress that the Word has the character appropriate to a divine being…As Christians chewed on this problem in the decades and centuries after John, some of them developed the idea of the Trinity…But John himself has not formulated a Trinity concept in his gospel…

        A failure to grasp the nuance of John’s thought can be seen in how several translations inappropriately introduce the male pronoun ‘he’ into John 1.1-2. In John 1.1 the TEV and LB use the pronoun ‘he’ for ‘the Word’ at some point to reduce the redundancy of John saying ‘the Word’ three times. A similar substitution of ‘he’ can be seen in John 1.2 in the NASB, NIV, NRSV, NAB, AND the AB. In this case ‘he’ replaces houtos, ‘this one’…all this translations suggest that ‘the Word’ is a male of some sort…the Word is not Christ in the Gospel according to John. The Word is a divine being or agency that transcends human qualities.

        [What I have just explained is not some novel interpretation of the passage. It is, in fact, part of the orthodox, mainstream understanding within Christianity, what is known as the ‘Two-Nature Christology’. The ‘Two-Nature’ doctrine is not the only possible way to understand what John meant by the Word becoming flesh. But that doctrine is in agreement with John in the idea that Jesus Christ does not pre-exist with God, rather the Word does.]

        The preponderance of evidence, from Greek grammar, from literary context, and from cultural environment, supports this translation [“And the Word was a god”], of which “the Word was divine” would be a slightly more polished variant carrying the same basic meaning…Bias has shaped most of these translations much more than has accurate attention to the wording of the Bible…No translation of John 1.1 that I can imagine is going to be perfectly clear and obvious in its meaning. John is subtle, and we do him no service by reducing his subtlety to crude simplicities.” BeDuhn, Truth in Translation, p 113-134.

    • Phillip Mutchell says:

      If this is true concerning ho theos and theos why do most people read ‘the god of this age/world” to refer to Satan rather than the Father? as it reads the god in both parts.

  7. Xavier says:

    “Nowhere in the NT is there to be found a text with o theos which has unquestionably to be referred to the Trinitarian God as a whole existing in three Persons… Six [possibly] use theos of Jesus, but in a hesitant and obviously restricted way…These findings are sufficient in themselves to justify the assertion that when the NT speaks of o theos (with the few exceptions) it is the Father as the First Person of the Trinity who is signified….The few exceptional uses of theos where the linguistic form itself marks them as exception, do not justify the view that in the usage of the NT o theos is an expression which signifies the Trinity in the unity of its proper nature. Where Christ’s Person and Nature are to be declared with the greatest theological strictness and precision, he is called o uios tou theou… If then where for the sake of clarity and precision everything depended on the use of a word which signified the thing meant…these [NY writers] used o theos for the Father, this can only be explained by the fact that in these formulas o theos did in actual fact signify the Father… When the NT thinks of God, it is the concrete individual uninterchangeable Person who comes into its mind, who is in fact the Father and is called o theos; so that inversely when o theos is being spoken of, it is not the single divine nature that is seen, subsisting in three hypostases [i.e. the Trinity], but the concrete Person who possesses the divine nature unoriginately [i.e. the Father of Jesus].

    It should be noted that o theos mou ( John 20:28), whether it be taken as vocative or nominative, is predicative in sense, and so cannot be used as evidence either ways to show whether o theos in NT usage ever appears as subject of a statement referring to Christ.” Karl Rahner: “Theos in the NT”, Theological Investigations, Vol. 3, Helicon Press, 1963.

    I suggest a new translation to render o theos as the One True God of Israel, or the One God, in distinction from the Son of God. This would reinstate biblical unitarianism.

  8. barley says:

    To make sense of John 1:1, a reasonable question to answer is, “What does logos mean?” One simplified definition is, “a message” This does not necessarily specifically point to the specific words of a message. For example, for God to say, “I will always be with you”, says the same thing as, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” The message is the same, but the words are very different. The heart of a parent to a child is love. That love can be expressed in many ways. Spoken words, a written message, the sending of a gift, the presence of another who conveys that love. God is love, His actions towards His people convey that love. His written Word conveys that love. His only begotten son also communicated that love. “Actions speak louder than words.” “I would rather see a sermon than hear one.” What better way for God to communicate His heart, His love, His message for and to the world than to send a sermon that people could see. That is Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ always did his father’s will, thus expressing God’s message in action. No wonder he could say, “he who has seen me has seen the Father.” The Bible is God’s message as well, obviously in written form. In the beginning was the Word, who or what? God. and the Word was with God. Was my or your Bible with God in the beginning? No! not in the physical form, but God having foreknowledge knew exactly what He would have His prophets write long before any of the prophets took their first breath. Was Jesus Christ with God in the beginning? NO, not in a physical form. But in the foreknowledge of God, God knew that JC would choose to be that perfect communication of God, God’s message to the world. God is the author of His message, He is the only source of that message, no one dictated it to Him. No one counseled God what He should have written. God’s foreknowledge also included knowledge of you and me. It included knowing that we would believe His Word, both the written Word and the living Word, Jesus Christ. We then have the privilege to become that logos as well. We choose to think the thoughts that JC thought, “let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” We can choose to continue the work that Jesus Christ did, by so living our lives that when people see us, they see Jesus Christ, they see the Father as well. Love you all.

  9. Xavier says:

    It serves well to use what the author of John later says in his first letter as a sort of “interlinear translation” of the prologue to his Gospel. The Translator’s Translation (British and Foreign Bible Society, 1973) does this well I think.

    The Promised Word of eternal life was with [pros] the Father from the beginning. It was manifested to us as Jesus. 1 John 1.1-2

    Note that this is John’s own comment on John 1:1 and shows that eternal life “preexisted” as a promise (1 John 2:25). Five times John says “That which” or “what” we have seen:

    Our theme is the word of life [not the preexisting SON!]. We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we looked at and our hands felt. The life was revealed; we have seen it, we bear witness to it, we declare it to you, that eternal life which was with [pros] the Father and was revealed to us. We declare to you also what we have seen and heard, that you may have fellowship with us. Translator’s Translation

    The Bible teaches a predestined, foreknowledge of not only events but persons as well. In other words, Jesus was foreknown not preexistent, big difference that is brought in the NT scriptures:

    I Peter 1:20: Christ was known in advance by God from the foundation of the world. Christ has appeared in these last times for your sake.

    Titus 1:2: God promised eternal life long ages ago [cp.1 John 1, 2, “Eternal life was with the Father as a promise from the beginning.”]

    2 Tim. 1:9: God’s purpose of grace was promised/granted to us from all eternity. It is now revealed by the appearing of Jesus Christ.

    Eph. 1:9: God made known to us the secret of his will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Christ.

    It seems that the scriptures are talking about a “message about Jesus Christ [that] has revealed his plan for you Gentiles, a plan kept secret from the beginning of time” [Rom 16.25]. Therefore, we could say that “even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes” [Eph 1.4].

    It follows, if believers are described as existing “before the world”, are we preexistent in the same way Jesus is said to be by the Catholic Creeds? I do not think so.

    Purposes and Plans are with God from the beginning [the world, angels, humans and Jesus] and are manifested later.

    Compare God to Jeremiah:

    Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. Before you were born I consecrated you. I appointed you a prophet to the nations. Jer. 1:5

  10. lmassey says:

    It is clear to me that you guys are smart,however you have missed it in it’s totality. The last comment is troubling in nature to me. The message that John was conveying is thatJesushas the nature of his Father. Jehovah’s Witnesses have erred in the discovering of the the Preexistant word. They say that Jesus is the Arc Angel Michael with no scriptual support. The entire first chapter of Hebrews states the Jesus never was an angel, yet they , like Xavier, seems to hold on to this view. To have the same nature as the Father, literally means, what makes the Father, the Father, makes The Son, the Son. Every aspect to the nature of God dwells in Jesus, as Col.2:9 states. To have all the fulness of the Godhead/Deity means just that. Even jesus in John 16:13 says all things the Father has are mine. This includes possesion and power. Jesus directly affirms that he is God in John 10:11, by saying the He is the “good shephard”. This is while he was asked about what is good.reply was that only One is good–God (Matthew 19:17. If only one is good according to Jesus, and he then attributes this to Himself as well, then He does have the exact same divine nature as His Father. This is one divine nature ( ie. “one God” ) manifested in multiple persons. The throne represents the Majesty on Glory of God. Jesus sits on that same Throne (Revelation 3:21). This is why the 24 elders fall down and worship before the throne of God and the Lamb-Rev. 5:14). It even states this in the NWT, go figure. They couldn’t change this one to obesiance. Micah 5:2 states the Jesus’ days are from everlasting or eternity. This means his origin is from everlasting. This is also how His Father is described in Psalm 93:2…You are from everlasting. As the lexicon’s state, this is “time out of mind”. The Father is also stated as from everlasting in Psalm 90:2–… “Even from everlasting to everlasting You are God”. The Father calls the Son God in Hebrews 1:8..To the Son he says Your Throne, O God is forever and ever. The Father alludes to this firstin the old testement, in Psalm 45:6. He calls his Son Himself in Zechariah 12:10, So the will look on Me whom they pierced, and will mourn for Him, ie. His Son. These are irrefutable. Yes, there in one God. However, He has been manifested in three person’s, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. To Jehovah’s witnesses, Mighty God is the Son, and Almighty God is Jehovah. Lets test this. Isaiah 9:6 ,the Son is described as Mighty God. If the Son is Mighty God, then the Mighty God of Jacob in Isaiah 10:21 is Jesus as well. Also, The great and Mighty God, whose name is Jehovah of Hosts, is Jesus as well. So, if one just uses their example, then Jesus is Jehovah. They hate this example, because their theory has this huge hole in it. Isaiah was monotheistic, there was only one “Mighty God” to him. This is in complete compliance to John 1:1c, whether Unitarians want to admit it or not. Hear O Israel, Jehovah your God is one Jehovah–Deut.6:4, also known as the Shema. The word for one in this verse is “echod” Meaning union or unity. it is the same word describe for man and wife in Genesis. The two shall become “one” flesh. Two seperate persons, but in union. Back to my point of Jesus being from everlasting as we have saw the Father described. If the Father is from everlasting, with no beginning, then his Son cannot have anything less than “no beginning”, if He also is from everlasting, as the Bible testifies.

    • Jaco says:

      The entire first chapter of Hebrews states the never Jesus was an angel yet they, like Xavier, seems to hold on to this view

      Imassey, Xavier doesn’t believe in Arian Christology. He definitely does not believe that Jesus was an angel. The entire first chapter of Hebrews, however, does show that Jesus had a beginning, and that he was not the one and the same Yahweh who spoke in the OT…

      What makes the Father the Father and the Son the Son is not essence or nature. Can you pleas show me that in Scripture? You need some serious divine revelation :-).

      Col. 2:9 does not speak of Jesus’ life before his resurrection. Does having theios, or divinity make Jesus Almighty God? (careful with this one…)

      The “all things” in John 16:13 does not include possession and power. Here’s the trick: If Jesus had all the possessions and power the Father has, then Scripture elsewhere would not speak of Jesus and the Father as unequal. Scripture does, so Jesus did not have all possessions and power the Father has…All things refer to delegatable things. Being God or being Almighty is not one of them.

      You’re equivocating where it comes to Jesus being the Good Shepherd. Jesus denies being good in Mt. 19:17. According to your understanding of “good” and Good Shepherd, you’ll also have to say the following: It’s healthy to eat good food. Chocolate tastes good. It’s healthy to eat chocolate. If you don’t agree with my analogy, Imassey, why not? I’ll take it back to the two texts you use.

      Micah does not speak about everlasting eternity. It speaks about time unknown. That’s what ha Ohlam means in Hebrew. Do your research better.

      Heb. 1:8 does quote Psalm. So, was the King in Psalm 46 also God Almighty, since that is the one initially receiving this praise later received by Jesus? If not, why the inconsistency?

      Zech. 12:10. So, Yahweh says that he was pierced. Jesus was literally pierced. Does that make Jesus Yahweh on the basis of being “pierced?” (Careful now)

      Isaiah 9:6, you confuse the issue. Unitarians do not deny that Yahweh is Mighty God. IF Jesus were God Almighty, yes, he would also have qualified to be Mighty God. But that’s exactly that, IF he were God Almighty. Being called Mighty God in itself does not make him God. Do some research on “Undistributed Middle” and you’ll find why you’re committing this fallacy. You say: Yahweh is MIghty God. Jesus is Mighty God. Ergo, Jesus is Yahweh. Do you agree? (Careful now)

      John. 1:1c is a linguistic atom bomb to trinitarians. Even the Arians have a better chance linguistically. Sorry, abandon, friend, abandon.

      NO, echad does not mean unity. The websites you’ve been visiting are feeding you lies. Echad means one. Adam and Eve became one flesh while remaining two separate beings. If you want to argue for complex unity and use Adam and Eve as examples, sorry, you’ll also have to accept that Yahweh and Jesus are separate beings, as your example, namely Adam and Eve are separate beings. That refutes your dogma. BTW, the “one flesh” the trinitarians like to refer to simply crumbles in the face of truth, seeing that the very “one flesh” ‘made’ (asou’ in Hebrew) fig leaves for covering. Asou’ is plural. Yahweh created (asa’) heaven and earth. Asa’ is singular. Testing the novel “complex unity” invention fails miserably, as the other inventions do…

      Imassey, you’re welcome to visit http://www.kingdomready.org/blog under “Another Trinity/Monotheism Debate.” I critiqued Robert Bowman’s attempts. The best from among the Trinitarian field run around bewildered and their followers are left destitute. Follow Scripture and abandon the empty philosopies of men.

      Argue the evidence. Don’t tell Xavier that he needs divine revelation. Any Tom Dick and Harry can tell you that in defense of their alien dogma. Argue the case. Stick to the evidence. But do your homework first…

      Jaco from South Africa

      • Xavier says:

        Jaco

        Curious to know your interpretation of Heb 1.10.

      • Jaco says:

        Hey, Xavier

        The writer of Hebrews quotes, not from the Masoretic Text, where God is addressed, but from the LXX, where God addresses the King.

        This is, thus, a Messianic prophecy, where the founder of the New Creation, namely the Messiah, is addressed. To interpret it otherwise would be a violation of the whole line of build-up in the catena – in my opinion.

        There are scholars who do think that Yahweh is addressed, but the explanations for that is not that convincing to me.

        Cheers,

        Jaco

      • Jaco says:

        Xavier,

        Below are some references I pasted. Good to see even trinitarian scholars admitting it…

        In the Septuagint text the person to whom these words are spoken is addressed explicitly as “Lord”; and it is God who addresses him thus. Whereas in the Hebrew text the suppliant is the speaker from the beginning to the end of the psalm, in the Greek text his prayer comes to an end with v. 22, and the next words read as follows: “He [God] answered him [the suppliant] in the way of his strength: ‘Declare to Me the shortness of My days: Bring Me not up in the midst of My days. Thy [the suppliant’s] years are throughout all generations. Thou, lord [the suppliant, viewed here as the Messiah by Hebrews], in the beginning didst lay the foundation of the earth.’” This is God’s answer to the suppliant; He bids him acknowledge the shortness of God’s set time (for the restoration of Jerusalem, as in v. 13) and not summon Him [God] to act when that set time has only half expired, while He [God] assures him [the suppliant, called lord by God] that he and his servants’ children will be preserved forever…
        Bacon suggested that the Hebrew, as well as the Greek, text of this psalm formed a basis for messianic eschatology, especially its reference to the “shortness” of God’s days, i.e., of the period destined to elapse before the consummation of His purpose [the arrival of the yet future Messianic Kingdom on earth]; he found here the OT background of Matt. 24:22, Mark 13:20 and Ep. Barn. 4.3 (“as Enoch says, ‘For to this end the Master [God] has cut short the times and the days, that his Beloved [Jesus] should make haste and come to his inheritance’”)… F.F. Bruce in the New International Commentary

        [T]he whole passage down to the end of the psalm becomes the answer of Yahweh to the suppliant who accordingly appears to be addressed as Kurie [lord] and creator of heaven and earth…Instead of understanding the verse as a complaint of the psalmist at the shortness of his days which are cut off in the midst, LXX and the Vulgate understand the utterance to be Yahweh’s answer to the psalmist’s plea that he will intervene to save Zion, because “it is time to have pity on her, yea, the set time is come” (v. 13). He is bidden acknowledge (or prescribe?) the shortness of Yahweh’s set time, and not to summon him when it is but half expired. On the other hand he [the Messianic lord] is promised that his own endurance shall be perpetual with the children of his servants. B.W. Bacon, “Heb. 1:10-12 and the Septuagint Rendering of Ps. 102:23,” Zeitschrift für die Neutestamentliche Wissenschaft 3, 1902, p. 280-285.

        The text at the center of Heb. 2:5ff. is Ps. 8:4-6 and it exhibits thematic connections to the scriptural catena [chain] of the first chapter [i.e. Heb. 1:10 is all part of the same reference to the new creation]…Heb. 2:5 [“the inhabited earth to come of which we speak”] is an introductory comment continuing the contrast between the Son and angels. Its reference to the “world to come” reinforces the notions of imminent judgment and cosmic transformation intimated by Ps. 102, cited at 1:10-12. Oxford Bible Commentary (2000)

        Jaco

  11. Xavier says:

    Imassey

    I do not hold a JW Christology, I simply pointed out that “all things” existed in God’s plan, purposes [logos]. Jesus, as the Son of God, had to have an origin in order for him to be a son [cp. Mat 1.1, 18-20; Lu 1.30-35].

  12. lmassey says:

    I see Xavier. Son means of same nature in Hebrew. In theory, if Jesus existed with or in the being of the Father, and His Father is uncreated, then that which is seperated or comes out of that uncreated being is also uncreated: Since Jesus is of the same nature/subsatnce as His Father. The seperated, uncreated substance or being, is then Son, in comparison to that which it was seperated from. This is how something can be “son”, yet uncreated. This is reasonable if you read Jesus’ testamony in John 8:42–” I have proceeded forth and come from God..”. His substance is proceeeded forth/out of God.
    The Bible is my final authority though, and it testifies that Jesus is not created as I showed in my first post. Also read Revelation 5:12-14. Every creature in Heaven was worshiping before the Throne of God and the Lamb. It didn’t say every “other” creature, besides Jesus, was worshiping. Creature is creation. Jesus in this scene was apart from the heavenly (created) hosts, thus not a creature ie created being.

  13. Xavier says:

    Imassey

    By the sounds of it your “finaly authority” is the same as that of the Cappadocian Fathers, pagan influenced Philosophical permutations based on some bit and pieces of scripture.

  14. lmassey says:

    From the souds of it, you cant refute what I said. But you are entitled to your opinion, as most who cant adequately disern or refute scripture. Anyone who reads my post will see that they are based on scripture, and keeping the integrity of the text. The “fact” still remains that there is overwhelming scriptual support, stating that Christ is not a “created being”, as you make Him out to be. And please, anyone who reads your post, will see that you have an Ariustic point of view, which has been proven to be hersey.

  15. Xavier says:

    Imassey

    Yes you are right, I cannot refute philosophical permutations based on scripture with scripture alone. We are like 2 ships passinng in the night friend. 🙂

  16. lmassey says:

    It was nice chatting with you though Xavier. I sincerely hope that all is well with you, and may the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, bless your life.

  17. Xavier says:

    Imassey

    Really? 🙂

  18. lmassey says:

    Yes, really. I’m not being sarcastic. I really wish you the best. You really seem to be interested in the things of God, and even though we diagree, I pray that our God Father fully reveals Himself to you.

  19. Xavier says:

    Imassey

    What exactly are you praying for Him to reveal to me?

  20. Xavier says:

    Jaco

    …the founder of the New Creation, namely the Messiah, is addressed.

    In what way is Messiah “creator” of the new heavens/earth then? Does this in anyway tie into Col 1.15f.?

  21. Jaco says:

    Hey, Xavier

    Col. 1:15ff most definitely identifies Jesus as the Originator of the New Creation. He is thus, since he was awarded that inheritance at his resurrection (Heb. 12:2, Eph. 2:4-7).

    Col. 1:15ff cannot refer to the Genesis creation, since Jesus is said in verse 20 to have reconciled all things to himself. Only redeemable “all things,” namely, that forming part of the New Creation, can be included here.

    JWs have taken an unwarranted leap at inserting [other] into the text. This is to force Jesus’ agency in the Genesis creation upon the section and to arbitrarily exclude whatever does not fit their model.

    Bottomline, had it not been for the provision in Gen. 3:15, all things in governmental positions and as subjects would have been existing for naught. We would have existed for naught. Through Jesus, the one enabling our redemption, we have been created and do we move and exist. Now that Jesus has been shown to be the rightful Messiah, we can live and be included in the New Creation he is Initiator of.

    Jaco

  22. Jaco says:

    What happened to Imassy and Cheryl?

  23. Steve says:

    The “fact” still remains that there is overwhelming scriptual support, stating that Christ is not a “created being”,
    I agree with Imassey. The story about Jesus conception is so simply one would has to make an effort to distort it. No doubt many are more than willing.

    The desciption of the event does not go into detail because the purpose is for us to apply our knowledge and interperet from a very common event of our day to day experience. People are concieved probably every minute on this planet. This is an act of “generating or begetting” offspring. Thus we are decended from both are parents. Mary and God both contributed something at the time of conception and their offspring was Jesus.

    It follows also that we are not created but rather decended from a created being who was “Adam”. A better word may be progeny. I can only speculate what God as a father contributed in the conception and I’m not ready to do that.

  24. Lover of God says:

    If Xavier still happens to check this website, I am interested in pursuing more dialog on Jn. 1:1. I have studied and pondered this passage and many related and I believe you are in line with God’s intent and revelation in this verse. Sadly, the trinitarian model has suffocated any meaningful glimpses into the glorious and revealtory sense of this verse. I believe it very simply speaks one very profound and clear message. The logos is the plan and purpose of God from the beginning. It addresses Christ certainly, but also takes in the entire plan and purposes of God. This one verse gives remarkable light when compared to Gen. 1:26 “let us make man in our image…” this was God speaking ahead of time of what Jesus Christ would accomplish in bringing “Adam” (man) back into the image of God. Rom. 4:17 says “God speaks of those things that are NOT as though they WERE.” So God can speak as if Christ has already accomplished all that he would on earth as if it were an accomplished event. This beautifully explains the verse in Revelation which says “the lamb, slain from the foundation of the world.” No one rationally believes Christ was hung on a cross before the creation. But in God’s mind, plan, purpose it was an accomplished event. This also profoundly harmonizes John 17: “glorify thou me father with the glory which I had with you before the world began”. Jesus had glory with his father in the “logos”, the plan of God. There are many amazing verses in Isaiah which also speak of God “purposing, planning, calling things into existence BEFORE they actually had their “reality” in time and space. Just as Cyrus was spoken of. God does not “prophesy”, men prophesy. God PRE-DECLARES. If Christ pre-existed did he preexist as a 5′ 9″ Jewish man? Of course not. Then did he exist as “God”? Then one cannot fairly say he is not a second God. How did he preexist? This is a sticky wicket…If he is God the Son, why does it say of the deity that inhabited Christ, “the FATHER that dwelleth in me, He does the works”? So, I believe Yahweh was one and the same as the logos. Just as an architect has a plan in his heart and mind and that plan “is him”. It reveals his thoughts, his nature, his intentions, his creativity. By the way, if one simply discards the heavy “velcro like affect” of the logos being Christ, the flow of the context actually clearly shows a progression that THE God is the one that made all things in Jn. 1: not the logos. Go back and read it slowly and carefully. The flow goes back to Yahweh being the creator as it so clearly says in Genesis, and probably at least 30-40 times in the major prophets of Isaiah, Jeremiah, etc. Hope someone named “xavier” is still checking this post as I would like to engage a bit more of your perspectives on this and other verses.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: