Does the Bible Teach the Trinity?

Trinitarians say that the one God is one and three. The Bible only says He is one.

Trinitarians say that Jesus has two natures, human and divine. The Bible only says he has a human nature.

Trinitarians want one to accept the trinity and hypostatic union as divine mysteries- they say that God has revealed these seemingly contradictory things. Both of these doctrines, they teach, are composed of two seemingly contradictory components, which together form a divine mystery, which, despite the apparent contradiction, must be taken on faith.

This might be fine, except for the fact that a major component of each of these supposed mysteries simply isn’t in the Bible- meaning that the doctrines designed to reconcile these contradictory components with each other are not divine mysteries, but man-made dilemmas. And these dilemmas are easily solved, not by appealing to mystery, but my sticking to only what’s revealed in the Bible- namely, that God is one, and Jesus is a man, the Son and Christ of God.

This line of reasoning is simple- but it holds true. For the Trinity to be an acceptable doctrine, it should be taught in the Bible. And for it to be taught in the Bible, at least two central components of the Trinity doctrine- that God is one, and that God is three, need to be present in the Bible. Yet, all through the Bible, God is only identified as being one. While He repeatedly declares His unity, He never says that He is three. One can search through the Bible from cover to cover, and will find countless declarations that God is one- but one will never ever find even one statement which declares that God is three, or that God is three-in-one, or that He is triune, tri-personal, or any other such thing. The point here is simply this: a major necessary component of the doctrine of the Trinity is never taught by the Bible. On the other hand, that God is one is repeatedly and clearly expressed in both the Old Testament and the New.

There are passages, of course, which mention three persons; there are several instances in the Bible where the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are spoken of as three; however, this is not the same thing as saying that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are all the one God. Unitarians also believe in Father, Son, and Holy Spirit -that these three exist is not at all the question at hand. Rather the question is, where are these three said to be the one God? None of the passages that mention these three together call them one God, or say that they are the same being- not a single passage. And in fact, in the majority of instances in which these three are mentioned together, the Father is simply called “God”, and the Son and Holy Spirit are distinguished as two others besides “God”. This fits perfectly with an understanding that God is one person, and that the Son and Holy Spirit are two others besides God, but does not support the notion that Father, Son, and Spirit are all one God.

Instances where Christ is called “God” or “a god” also don’t help the trinitarian case here; throughout the Bible, other beings besides the one God of Israel, YHVH, are called “gods”, including angels, and rulers in Israel, on account of the God-given authority and dominion they exercise within creation. In the case of Jesus, God’s human Messiah and Son, the title “God” (or “god”- there is no capitalization in NT Greek) serves the same purpose -a subject we shall return to later- denoting the God-given authority and dominion Jesus possesses as God’s appointed Lord over the universe.

As for the Holy Spirit being called “God” or “a god”, this is something which never occurs in the entire Bible. Where with Christ, the term “God” is at least applied to him, we have not even one clear instance of this with the Holy Spirit. There is one passage in Acts 5 which trinitarians often use as a proof-text for the Holy Spirit being God- but by the same logic some trinitarians use to try to ‘prove’ the Holy Spirit is God from Acts 5, one can also “prove” that the Holy Spirit is an angel from Acts 10. In fact, only by employing faulty logic and sloppy exegesis can either conclusion be achieved. Acts 5 never clearly calls the Holy Spirit ‘God’- rather is declares that just as by lying to Peter, Ananias had lied to the Holy Spirit, so by lying to the Holy Spirit, Ananias had lied to God. This no more proves the identity of God and the Holy Spirit than it proves the identity of the Holy Spirit with Peter. (See also: Twelve Arguments Showing the Holy Spirit is Not the One God).

The fact that the Bible never clearly calls the Holy Spirit “God” is rather damning for the doctrine of the Trinity- if one of the persons who is supposed to be a member of this triune God is never even called “God” once in the Bible, then it can never be fairly claimed that the Bible teaches the one God is three persons. Were the Holy Spirit called “God” or “a god”, this would hardly prove the trinitarian case- but this cannot even be said to occur. This inconvenient truth about the Holy Spirit is often ignored by trinitarian apologists. But a chain is only as strong as its weakest link- if the Bible never even teaches the Holy Spirit is God, then it certainly cannot be said to teach that God is a Trinity.

This all begs the question, why should anyone believe that God is three, when God has never revealed this about Himself? If the one God never says it of Himself, Jesus never says it about God, or says about himself that he is a person of a triune God, and if the Holy Spirit, in all the scriptures he inspired, never saw fit to mention this supposedly important doctrine even once, then on what good grounds should we believe that God is three? This question is only aggravated by the fact that it seems obvious that for God to be both one and three is a contradiction, especially when it is asserted particularly that God is one and three in the same sense, as many trinitarians do.

Now, if God did indeed reveal that He is both one and three, then this contradiction need not bother us- God is far above us, and we might well accept it as a divine mystery; something God understands that we cannot, which should be accepted on the basis of God’s trustworthy testimony about Himself, despite the fact we cannot understand it. We ought to have no problem, inherently, with the idea of divine mystery, or with believing in something we cannot fully understand. The problem is, God never revealed this. If that’s true, then this will never be a matter of how much we trust God over our own understanding- rather its a matter of people trying to impose on us a very significant belief about God, which God has never revealed to us or given us any reason to believe about Himself.

Our loyalty must be to God, not mere tradition, or social acceptance. There’s a real social cost to not believing the doctrine of the Trinity- but that’s okay. We should desire first and foremost the truth about God, and trust God with the consequences of believing that truth. The fact that God only ever revealed that He is one, and never that He is three, should in itself cause us to reject the Trinity, and to insist that any who would have us believe it provide clear biblical proof that God has claimed to be not only one, but also three – and such proof they will not be able to find.

It ought to be our assumption, when we see that God has revealed Himself to be one, and is consistently spoken of as a single person (for instance, by the use of singular personal pronouns), that He is only one, and not three (for this three-ness appears to contradict His unity, which we already know is true); and anyone who would insist that we must also hold what appears to then be a contradictory notion about God, that He is also three in addition to being one, should not be heeded unless they can do so on the basis of irrefutable scriptural evidence. Otherwise, we risk carelessly compromising what God has clearly revealed about Himself for something He has not, a mere invention of men, or rather, doctrine of demons.

Hear O Israel! YHVH our God, YHVH is one.

Deuteronomy 6:4

Test all things; hold fast that which is good.

1 Thessalonians 5:21

When we consider the doctrine of the dual-natures of Christ, we are confronted with a similar situation as we are with the Trinity- two essential elements of the doctrine, which appear contradictory, are put together to form what is regarded as a divine mystery- that Jesus has both a human and a divine nature. However, the Bible only speaks of Jesus having a human nature, and never asserts that he possesses any other. One may scour the Bible from one end to the other on this subject, and find references to Christ being ontologically human abound- in the the Pentateuch, through the Prophets, and into the gospels, and in the writings of the apostles after, we repeatedly and clearly see Jesus predicted to be a man, said to have been a man, call himself a man, and be asserted again and again to have been a man by his apostles.

We need to consider what that means- to call someone a man includes, implicitly, a statement of that person’s nature. Jesus belongs to the human species, that’s the kind of being the Bible tells us he is, unambiguously. In not one of these cases where Jesus is called a man is his humanity ever qualified, either, as we might expect if he actually had another nature as well- never does a biblical author take the time to clarify or specify that their words should not be understood how they sound on a bare surface reading, as telling you that the kind of being Jesus is is a human being. The reader is left to understand that Jesus is a ontologically a man, and nothing else.

Surely this is the impression that those who were familiar with Old Testament prophecy about the Messiah had, when they heard their God would raise up a prophet like Moses from among their own brethren, and that the Messiah would be a descendant of David, and surely those who first heard the preaching of the apostles in the book of Acts would have understood nothing more than this either, as the apostles repeatedly declare Jesus to be a man, but never once in all their preaching mention him having a divine nature.

“Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know—  this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death.”

Peter, Acts 2:22-23 NASB

All in all, then, the Bible gives us a clear picture of Jesus Christ as a man, and as having a human nature. The same cannot be said about having a second, divine nature. Not a single verse in the Bible asserts that Jesus has a “divine nature” or any nature other than a human nature. Instances where Jesus is referred to as “God” (or “god”-there is no capitalization in Greek), cannot reasonably be taken as referring to a nature Jesus possesses, because biblically speaking, Godhood is not a nature or a species to which an individual may belong, but rather, to be “God” or “a god” denotes dominion and authority. For this reason, human judges and rulers, and angels as well, are called “gods” in the Bible, without impiety or absurdity.

We see Godhood spoken of this way in respect to YHVH all the time- He is called the “God of Israel”, “God over all”, the “God of gods”, “the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob”, etc. and is called “my God”, “your God”, “our God” etc. Why do the Bible, and the people who speak in it, employ all this possessive language? Notice that we wouldn’t speak in a similar way of some ontological attribute or species, but we would of other relational roles. This can be shown by an easy test: try inserting “eternal” into those phrases in place of the word “God”, and see if they make any sense. Then try inserting “King” or “Lord” and see if they sound sensible, and that should show you which of those sorts of things Godhood is parallel to in biblical thinking.

Biblically, then, a person being called “God” or “a god” does not denote an ontological status or a nature, nor does it identify that person with the one God, YHVH. If it did, God would have to be something much more than a mere Trinity in order to accompany the multitude of persons beside Father, Son, and Holy Spirit the Bible calls “gods”. But if we think about Godhood with a biblical mindset, we will understand that a person being called a “god” in the Bible simply denotes authority and dominion, and does not identify the person bearing the label with the “God of gods”, the one God, YHVH.

What we have then, is scripture clearly presenting the Messiah, Jesus, as a man, and never telling us that he is ontologically, or in respect to nature, something other than a man. Like other men in the Bible, he can be referred to as a god- that simply fits the pattern of how scripture speaks, and should be expected. If angels on account of their authority can be called “gods”, then how much more so can he who has been given all authority in heaven and earth by the only true God? If judges in Israel can be called “gods”, how much more so can he through whom God will judge the entire world? I would suggest it should not surprise us or bother in the slightest that the human Messiah is called ‘our god’ in light of all this. This isn’t a statement of nature, but of status and authority.

In light of all this, then we are given reason by the Bible to only think that Jesus has a human nature- no other nature is ever revealed to us. There is no reason, then, to try to embrace the apparent contradiction of single individual possessing two distinct natures- something which makes no sense, and which we have no example of with anything else in the universe. If the Bible revealed such a thing, we should accept it, trusting God’s wisdom above our own, and being content to not understand things that are above us. But as with the Trinity, God never revealed this. Our acceptance of such a doctrine then cannot be seen as a test of how much we trust God over our own reason, but rather, whether we will restrict ourselves to what God has actually revealed about His Son, or embrace something foreign to that revelation, which appears to contradict it.

We should be very cautious about accepting something which seems to contradict what God has revealed about Himself and His Son. When God reveals He is one, we should not be willing to accept the contradictory notion that He is three, unless He Himself reveals this to us. Likewise, when God reveals that His Son is a man, we should not be willing to accept the contradictory notion that he is also ontologically God, without some clear revelation from God on this point. Otherwise, if we accept these doctrines without warrant from God’s own revelation, we risk simply contradicting God on these important matters. And such clear revelation in favor of the Trinity and dual-natures of Christ, we do not have. With that being the case, no Christian can be said to have good reason to accept the doctrine that God is triune or that the man Jesus possesses a second, divine nature. Rather, we should embrace without reservation the clear biblical teachings that God is one, and that Jesus His Son and Messiah is a man.

Is the Son Co-eternal With the Father?

Trinitarians place heavy emphasis on the idea that Jesus, the Son of God, is “co-eternal” with God his Father. What is meant by this is not simply that Jesus is eternal in the sense that he is everlasting and will live forever, as God his Father does, for this is a point upon which Trinitarians and Unitarians agree. Rather the emphasis of trinitarians on this point is that the Son is co-eternal with the Father in the sense that He is co-eval with Him; that as long as God has existed (which is always, and without beginning) the Son has existed as well.

This doctrine of past co-eternality, or coevality (that the Son is as old as the Father) is never stated in the Bible. Common texts alleged in support of the doctrine do not state it directly, but are rather the subject of argument by inference. Ultimately the philosophical and doctrinal presuppositions about time a person brings to these biblical texts will significantly affect their reading of the various passages alleged in favor of co-eternality. But to understand whether or not the Son is co-eternal with the Father, do we really need to dive deep into speculation about the nature of time? Or does the Bible actually provide us with clear answers?

While the Bible never expressly teaches ‘co-eternality’, it does, to the surprise of some, say things that are incompatible with it. Firstly, a text commonly noted by opponents of co-eternality is 1 Chronicles 17:13:

“I will be his father and he shall be My son”

This text in which God speaks to King David has often been taken as a Messianic text, having not only reference to Solomon, David’s immediate heir, but also to the future Christ, the Son of David, who would sit on David’s throne forever in God’s kingdom. Notice that God did not say that He already was the Father of David’s son, but that He “will be” Father to David’s descendant in the future; likewise, the Messiah is not presently said to be God’s son, but it is promised that he “shall be My son” in the future. If Jesus already existed at this time in history as God’s co-eternal Son, it seems very strange indeed that this relationship is spoken of only as something to come in the future and not something which existed at present.

There is another passage which is even clearer than this at dispelling the notion that Christ is co-eval with the Father, 1 Peter 1:20:

For He [Christ] was foreknown before the foundation of the world, but has appeared in these last times for the sake of you who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

1 Peter 1:20-21 NASB

This one verse disproves the theory that the Son is coeval with the Father; for to foreknow (or foreordain) is to know (or ordain) beforehand; and so if God foreknew His Christ, of necessity He must have been before Christ. If Christ had eternally pre-existed with God, then it would not be said that God foreknew Christ, but simply that He knew him.

It is, then, a necessary implication of this text that God was before His Christ, and therefore, that Christ was after his Father -or else it would not be possible for Peter to have said that God foreknew Christ. Again, were Christ co-eternal with the Father as trinitarians say, this passage would not say that Jesus was foreknown by God, but simply that God knew Him. But by saying that God foreknew Christ, Peter puts God chronologically before Christ.

Its a great blessing that the Bible actually supplies us an answer to the otherwise highly philosophical and speculative question of co-eternality. No amount of extra-biblical philosophical speculation or human tradition can compare to the witness of the Bible itself. The apostle Peter was clear: God foreknew Christ before the foundation of the world, and so it necessarily follows from this that the Father is before Christ, and that Christ is after the Father, not co-eternal or coeval with Him.

We might end by noting that the amount of weight trinitarians place upon the doctrine of co-eternality is downright dangerous- they declare that a person is anathema (accursed) and excommunicate from the body of Christ if they do not agree that the Son is co-eternal with the Father, all while this doctrine is not only absent from the Bible itself, but actually opposed to its teaching. Is the apostle Peter anathema? The modern Christian must judge if they will be better served to side with the beloved disciple of the Lord Jesus, or the council of Nicea on this matter.

What is Biblical Unitarianism?

What is Biblical Unitarianism?

In the name “Biblical Unitarianism”, “Biblical” denotes faith in the Bible; serving to distinguish from Unitarian Universalists, a liberal non-Christian group. “Unitarian” simply refers to the belief that the one God of the Bible is only one person, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ. A “Biblical Unitarian” then is a Bible-believing Christian who believes that the God of the Bible is one person, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, rather than a Trinity of three persons. Biblical Unitarians believe in God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit, but do not believe that they are all one God; rather, the one God is the Father alone.

Biblical Unitarians note that in the Bible, God is never spoken of as being a Trinity, or as being multiple persons. Rather, they note that all throughout the Bible, God is always spoken of as a single person, indicated by the use of hundreds of singular personal pronouns, and that the one God is expressly equated with the person of the Father alone several times:

Therefore concerning the eating of things offered to idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is no other God but one. 5 For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as there are many gods and many lords), 6 yet for us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and through whom we live.

1 Corinthians 8:4-6 NKJV

Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You, 2 as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him. 3 And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

John 17:1-3 NKJV

Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, 25 to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.

Jude 1:24-25 NASB

There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.

Ephesians 4:4-6 NASB

These passages of scripture all expressly equate the one God of the Bible with only one person, the person Jesus calls His God and Father. Biblical Unitarians note that Jesus never claimed to be the one God, but rather taught things which clearly distinguish Him as another person or being besides God:

“Believe in God, believe also in me.” -Jesus, John 14:1 NKJV

“Jesus answered, “If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God.” -Jesus, John 8:54 NKJV

“I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.” -Jesus, John 20:17 NKJV

Biblical Unitarians thus conclude that Jesus is not the one God of Israel, but another person and being besides the one God- His only-begotten Son, His appointed Christ, the one mediator between God and man, as the following texts say:

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” -John, John 3:16 NASB

“The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified His servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release Him.” -Peter, Acts 3:13 NASB

“Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified.” -Peter, Acts 2:36 NASB

“For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” -Paul, 1 Timothy 2:5 NASB

Biblical Unitarians note that the apostles call Jesus a man, repeatedly, and without qualification; for this reason, Biblical Unitarians confess that Jesus Christ is a true man, fathered uniquely by God in the womb of Mary, by the agency of the Holy Spirit. Not only did Jesus’s apostles call him a man, but he also called himself a man -and so do the Old Testament scriptures:

“But as it is, you are seeking to kill Me, a man who has told you the truth, which I heard from God; this Abraham did not do.” -John 8:40 NASB

“Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know—” -Peter, Acts 2:22 NASB

“Because [God] has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.” -Paul, Acts 17:31 NASB

“He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief” -Isaiah 53:3 NASB

Thus the simple confession that the one God is one person, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, and that Jesus is the human Son and Christ of God, forms the heart of Biblical Unitarian faith in God and Christ.

But what about the traditional doctrine of the Trinity? That there exists one God in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit?

Biblical Unitarians note that besides the fact that this doctrine is absent from the Bible, it also conflicts with several things the Bible teaches. If we have to choose between tradition and scripture, “We must obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29 NASB). We must “Test all things, and hold fast that which is good.” (1 Thess 5:21) rather than simply believing something because it is traditional. Biblical Unitarians note that the doctrine of a triune God is incompatible with some of the Bible’s clear teachings about God and Jesus. Where the doctrine of a triune God teaches that the Father and Son are equal and identical, the Bible repeatedly marks God and Jesus as distinct and different from one another:

  1. God is the Almighty (Greek “Pantokrator”, meaning, ‘Ruler over all’); He is supreme in authority over all (Rev 4:8, 2 Cor 6:18). Jesus is subject and obedient to the Father as His God, and so is not supreme over all in authority (1 Cor 11:3, 1 Cor 15:28).
  2. God is uncaused, the Maker of all things. Jesus is caused by the Father, as the very name ‘Son’ implies; He also expressly declares that He lives because of the Father (Jn 6:57).
  3. God is immutable, meaning He is eternally unchanging. He is also not a man, for the Bible says “God is not a man” in Numbers 23:19, and “For I am the LORD, I do not change” in Malachi 3:6. Thus it is impossible that God would have gone from not being a man to being a man, as this would obviously be a change in God. This contradicts the Trinitarian teaching that the one God became a man.
  4. God is invisible, having never been seen by man, and is declared to be incapable of being seen (1 Tim 6:16). “No one has seen God at any time.” -1 John 4:12 NKJV. Yet Jesus Christ was seen.
  5. God is omniscient; He knows all things absolutely (1 Jn 3:20). Jesus declares plainly that He did not know something, which only the Father knew: “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” -Mark 13:32 NKJV. If only the Father and no other person knows this, then the Father alone knows all things; and so, the one God, Who knows all things, must be only one person, the Father, and no other.
  6. God is immortal; He is not subject to death (1 Tim 1:17). Whatever death is, an immortal being, by definition, cannot experience it. Yet Jesus Christ died (and rose from the dead); and this is a central part of the gospel. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” -Romans 5:8 NKJV
  7. God cannot be tempted by evil”; yet Jesus “was tempted in all things” (Ja 1:13, Heb 4:15).
  8. Jesus is the Christ of God; that is, the anointed king, prophet, and priest of God, sent and empowered by God. Is the one sent by God the same as He Who sent? Is the one who is anointed the same as He Who anoints?
  9. Jesus is the Son of God; and no son is the same individual being as their father.
  10. Jesus is the one mediator between God and man, and by definition, no mediator is a party to their own mediation. “For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” -1 Timothy 2:5 NKJV. Notice, Jesus is simply described as a “man”, not a “God-man”, as trinitarianism says.
  11. Jesus is the Lord appointed by God over the universe, subject to God. “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” -Acts 2:36 NKJV. A person who is the one God has no need to be made Lord by God, for God has always been Lord.
  12. Jesus is the High Priest of God; a high priest worships His God, and is necessarily distinguished from the God whose priest he is. “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.” -Hebrews 4:14 NKJV.

Biblical Unitarians note that these truths about God and Christ make it impossible to reasonably believe that they are together one being or one God. Rather, the one true God, the God of the Bible, is only one person, the one Jesus Christ calls His God and Father.

100 Biblical Arguments For Unitarianism

The following was written in 1825 by Samuel Barrett (Boston: American Unitarian Association).

Unitarian Christians believe Jesus Christ to be the Son of God and the Saviour of men. They believe in the divinity of his mission and in the divinity of his doctrines. They believe that the Gospel which he proclaimed came from God; that the knowledge it imparts, the morality it enjoins, the spirit it breathes, the acceptance it provides, the promises it makes, the prospects it exhibits, the rewards it proposes, the punishments it threatens, all proceed from the Great Jehovah. But they do not believe that Jesus Christ is the Supreme God. They believe that, though exalted far above all other created intelligences, he is a being distinct from, inferior to, and dependent upon, the Father Almighty. For this belief they urge, among other reasons, the following arguments from the Scriptures.

1. Because Jesus Christ is represented by the sacred writers to be as distinct a being from God the Father as one man is distinct from another. “It is written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. I am one who bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me,” John 8:17, 18. Continue reading “100 Biblical Arguments For Unitarianism”

Do You Worship the Same God as Irenaeus?

One of Irenaeus’s main points throughout his writings, that he makes again and again, is that the one God, the Maker of all things, the Almighty, is the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ. The one God and the Father are the exact same person; just as much as the Son is the Son of the Father, so He is the Son of the one God; just as the Son is not the Father, He is not the one God. In the face of the old gnosticism, this was an important point to stress; the prominent heresies of his day denied the identity of the Father and the one God, just as the prominent heresy of our day does as well. Continue reading “Do You Worship the Same God as Irenaeus?”

Do You Believe in the Son of God?

“If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God which He has testified of His Son. 10 He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. 11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.” (1 John 5:9-12 NKJV)

“If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God which He has testified of His Son. 10 He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe G

od has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. 11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.” (1 John 5:9-12 NKJV)

The truth laid out in these verses is simple- he who has the Son has life; he who does not believe in the Son of God, does not have life. Salvation comes through Jesus Christ, the one Mediator between God and man (1 Tim 2:5), and no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6).

To believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, then, is manifestly required for salvation. The confession that Jesus is “the Christ, the Son of the living God” is central to the true Christian faith (Matt 16:16).

Yet tragically, many professing Christians deny the Son of God. They do this by embracing Augustinian trinitarianism.

Continue reading “Do You Believe in the Son of God?”

We Believe in One God, the Father Almighty…

Most ancient creeds, including the Nicene, begin by declaring faith in one God, the Father Almighty. This belief that God is one person, the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ (that is, Unitarianism) is given as the first article of the Christian faith in these ancient creeds and confessions. The identification of the one God with the person of the Father in particular is not only easily proved from the scriptures, but is also extensively witnessed to by the ante-nicene and nicene church fathers. A non-comprehensive list of quotes showing this is given below.

Scriptural Proof:

“There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.” (Ephesians 4:4-6 NASB)

“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3 NASB)

“yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.” (1 Corinthians 8:6 NASB)

“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, 25 to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.” (Jude 1:24-25 NASB)

Ancient Patristic Witness:

Clement of Rome:

“Why are there strifes, and tumults, and divisions, and schisms, and wars  among you? Have we not [all] one God and one Christ? Is there not one Spirit of grace poured out upon us?” 1 Clement, Chapter XLVI.

“We beseech Thee, Lord and Master, to be our help and succor. Save
those among us who are in tribulation; have mercy on the lowly; lift
up the fallen; show Thyself unto the needy; heal the ungodly; convert
the wanderers of Thy people; feed the hungry; release our prisoners;
raise up the weak; comfort the fainthearted. Let all the Gentiles
know that Thou art the God alone, and Jesus Christ is Thy Son, and
we are Thy people and the sheep of Thy pasture.” 1 Clement, Ch 59

“For concerning faith and repentance and genuine love and temperance
and sobriety and patience we have handled every argument, putting you
in remembrance, that ye ought to please Almighty God in righteousness
and truth and long suffering with holiness, laying aside malice and
pursuing concord in love and peace, being instant in gentleness; even
as our fathers, of whom we spake before, pleased Him, being lowly
minded toward their Father and God and Creator and towards all men.” 1 Clement, Ch 62

Ignatius of Antioch:

“On this account also they were persecuted, being inspired by His grace to fully convince the unbelieving that there is one God, who has manifested Himself by Jesus Christ His Son, who is His eternal Word, not proceeding forth from silence, and who in all things pleased Him that sent Him.” Epistle to the Magnesians (shorter version), Chapter VIII. Continue reading “We Believe in One God, the Father Almighty…”