Trinity Troubles

(John 10:22-30)

This will be a controversial post today and I am aware that many will not accept what I have to say. However I can only present what The Lord has given me according to the understanding that I have and what I believe to be the truth from the gospel and the bible.

Trinity Troubles
sourced from stock.xchng taken by John Nettleship

There is a teaching that is so prevalent and pervasive in the Christian church today and that is the teaching of the Trinity. Trinity doctrine is so entrenched that it is accepted in many parts of the church without question. It is seen as almost a foundational belief of Christianity and yet most Christians do not understand it because it is difficult to comprehend.

Scriptures such as this one I am looking at today seem to lend authority to the concept of a single God in three persons, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, but I have to say I find it hard to accept such thinking. Let me lay my cards on the table right now. I do not accept the doctrine of the Trinity.

My Position on God

I do accept that both Jesus and the Father are God, but they are not a single God. There are two separate and distinct entities and it is clear that Jesus as the Son and also the Word accepted that the Father was greater than himself.

Furthermore, the Holy Spirit is not referred to anywhere in the bible as being God, let alone a third face or person of God as is accepted in Trinity teaching. The Holy Spirit is a description of the spirit. That is, He is a spirit who is holy, and that includes all of the angels (excluding the fallen angels of course, who are demonic).

What about this scripture?

This scripture and others like it are used to support the teachings of trinity doctrine. The verse here says, “I and the Father are one.” (Verse 30) but is this really saying that Jesus and the Father are one being or one God?

No it is not. If we look also at John 17:11 we see Jesus says this, “And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.”

Now if I use the same logic as used for Trinity, I could say that we who are in Jesus are also God! Jesus is saying above that we who follow Him will be one with Him just as He is one with the Father. So I could be so brash and foolish to say we are God if I use the logic of Trinity.

Let me ask you also, do you believe you are Gods because you follow Jesus? Do you believe you are a fourth face or person of God, which would make the Trinity a four headed entity rather than three?

I am sure you don't believe such a thing for a moment. But it is such folly as this that leads to the belief in Trinity doctrine.

So who or what is God?

Jesus quite correctly stated that He is the Son of God. He was also the Word who is God who was in the beginning and was the architect of the Creation. And most importantly, Jesus recognized that the Father was greater than himself for Jesus worshiped and serve the Father. It says also in 1 Corinthians 15:24-28,

24 Then comes the end, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power.
25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
27 For “God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “all things are put in subjection,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things in subjection under him.
28 When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him, that God may be all in all.

There is a clear distinction here showing that Jesus and the Father are very separate and that the Father is the greater of the two. This is consistent with all that Jesus had to say about His relationship to the Father. It is also how we should consider both Jesus and the Father. They are two separate beings, God the Father and His first born and only begotten Son who is the Word and dwelt with man in the flesh as Jesus.

What about the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit is not a singularity but a collective name for those spirits who are holy and who do the work of God. As an example, we can receive the Holy Spirit as our personal teacher, counselor, comforter, guide and intercessory with God. But who is this Holy Spirit that we can receive?

Simply put, this Holy Spirit is an angel sent from God to help us attain salvation. Look what the writer of Hebrews said in Hebrews 1:5-7.

5 For to which of the angels did God ever say, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”? Or again, “I will be to him a father, and he shall be to me a son”?
6 And again, when he brings the firstborn into the world, he says, “Let all God's angels worship him.”
7 Of the angels he says, “He makes his angels winds, and his ministers a flame of fire.”

We saw the fulfillment of this description and prophecy in verse 7 relating to the angels of God on the Day of Pentecost when the disciples first received the Holy Spirit. Note what it says in Acts 2:1-4,

1 When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place.
2 And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.
3 And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.
4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

This is the fulfillment of that prophetic description of the angels and shows that the Holy Spirit is indeed an angel sent to man. Why? Look no further than the last verses of Hebrews 1 for that answer. “13 And to which of the angels has he ever said, “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”? 14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?”

The angels are ministering spirits sent to serve those who are to receive salvation. We are those who are to receive salvation when we allow the angels, that is the Holy Spirit to do the work in us He is tasked to do. And His work is to transform us into the image of Jesus Christ and thus the image of God.

So when Jesus says that, “I and the Father are one,” He is saying they are of one mind and one spirit for they think and act in perfect balance and harmony with each other. It is the will and plan of God that those who come to Jesus will be one with him in the same way. That we should think and act in all situations and circumstances as God would do himself.

There is no Trinity. Just God the Father and God the Son seeking man to be like them and giving man the power to achieve that position through the working of the angelic Holy Spirit he gives to us to accomplish His work. There are many other scriptures to back this position I hold, but time and space do not permit me to add any further now. Please feel free to comment and discuss this whether you agree or disagree with my position. So over to you…what do you think about the doctrine of Trinity?

(Photo sourced from stock.xchng taken by John Nettleship)

 

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4 Replies to “Trinity Troubles”

  1. We are called temples of the Holy Spirit 1Cor6v18.
    2Cor6v16 says we are the temple of the living God. A living God can hardly be called an angel!
    When Jesus was baptised, he was filled with the Holy Spirit. By your theology the creator king, who laid aside his majesty to be born of flesh, was empowered by an angel.
    A temple is a place of worship, and sacrifice, to whoever is the Lord of that temple. ie. The temple that Solomon built was dedicated to Jehovah/Yahweh. That is where he was worshipped. However we now must bow and worship an indwelling angel if your theology is to be believed.
    Again, how can we blaspheme the Holy Spirit if it is merely an angel?
    These are just some immediate thoughts which stand in the way of your assertion about the Holy Spirit

    1. Hi Francis,
      Thanks for your comment.
      At no time do I suggest we should bow or worship an angel or an indwelling spirit. Indeed when John fell before the angel in Revelation, the angel told him to not to do that for he was just a fellow servant and told John to worship God. (Rev 22:8-9) The focus of our worship is Jesus Christ, not the holy spirit that dwelt within him that He received when He was baptised.

      Also if we were to accept the doctrine of trinity, where there are three persons but one God, would they not all be equal? And if they are equal why would it be an unforgiveable sin to blaspheme the Holy Spirit but not to blaspheme Jesus Christ himself, who is the focus of our worship and who is indeed God the Son and God the Word? (See: Luke 12:10, Matt 12:31-32, John 1:1-3, John 1:14) And yet even Jesus himself did not consider himself equal to the Father as we see in 1 Cor 15:27-28,

      27 “For God has put all things in subjection under his feet.” But when it says, “All things are put in subjection under him,” it is plain that he is excepted who put all things under him.
      28 When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things under him, that God may be everything to every one.

      Also it is not the temple that is important but God who is worshiped. In Christianity the temple is of no consequence, neither are the church buildings of any consequence. As it shows in Heb 3:3-4, “3 Yet Jesus has been counted worthy of as much more glory than Moses as the builder of a house has more honor than the house. 4 (For every house is built by some one, but the builder of all things is God.)” Furthermore Jesus shows in John 4:20-24 that the place of worship is not significant but rather the one who is worshiped.

      20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain; and you say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.”
      21 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father.
      22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews.
      23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him.
      24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”

      In the case of Jesus and the Holy Spirit it is Jesus who is worshiped, not the Holy Spirit dwelling within him.

      Finally, nowhere in the Bible (to my knowledge…and I stand to be corrected) are we told to worship the Holy Spirit. We are told to worship God and Jesus Christ. God the Father because He is the Father of all and Jesus Christ because He is the Son of God and gave Himself for us. The scriptures show that the Holy Spirit is a worker who does the work of transformation in us as we mature in Christ. He is the counselor, comforter, teacher, guide, protector and so on of the people of God. The way the Holy Spirit is depicted and described in Acts 2:1-4 and Hebrews 1:1-14 seems to show clearly that He is an angel. I know many will disagree, including yourself, but that is what the Bible is telling me, and as always I am happy to hear other points of view.

      Thanks again for your comment and input.

      God bless,
      John

  2. John

    Are you aware that the Jews thought that God was a trinity long before the advent of Jesus. They could see it in scripture (OT) many centuries before that time. It was some time later that they decided to expunge all reference, all letters, and all statement about the trinity from the Jewish writings because anyone could see that Jesus fulfilled the position of Messiah, and they couldn’t permit that to continue. We know that this is true because there are copies of that edict still around, and there are copies of their trinity discussions still around. They didn’t manage a good enough censorship job and some bits escaped the burnings.
    I say this because it is a popular misconception that the doctrine of the trinity is relatively recent.
    I might add that I disagree with your post, although it makes for interesting discussion.

    1. Hi Francis,
      Thanks for your thoughts on this post. I knew before I wrote it that this would be controversial as any time trinity doctrine is mentioned there are those who are for and against.

      My issue with trinity doctrine is that it is confusing. Even Augustine said of it that is was a mystery that man could not put into words. Wikipedia cites the following quoting Augustines book “On The Trinity”: “Despite his lengthy exposition to explain the Trinity in light of scripture, Augustine states that an explanation is beyond human language, and that the definition of the Trinity as three persons is but a similitude needed in order to express it. Augustine concludes that one must believe before one understands, and that the Trinity must remain unknown.”

      Such a description is confusing at best. It says basically that trinity cannot be explained or known by man, you just have to believe it.

      This is at odds with the bible which says, “For God is not a God of confusion but of peace” (1 Cor 14:33) In addition Jesus says in John 14:26, “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” It is the work of the Holy Spirit amongst other things to teach us all things. If that is so, could he not remove the confusion of trinity and make it plain to mankind? Why would He allow man to be confused about His nature and being if He wants man to follow and worship Him? I am sure there are many who have asked the Lord for understanding regarding the Trinity doctrine and if the work of the Holy Spirit is to teach us all things as the bible says, would God withhold such information?

      John also wrote, quoting Jesus in Ch 16 vs 12-15: “12 “I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.
      13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.
      14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you.
      15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

      Jesus knew the disciples could not bear some of the things they needed to know, but all would be revealed when they received the Holy Spirit, which occurred at Pentecost. They would be “guided into all the truth” by the spirit and the Spirit has access to all the knowledge of God. And yet Augustine and pretty much every theologian since cannot explain adequately the doctrine of trinity. It is a confusion and a mystery and that is not the way of God who reveals truth and gives the light of understanding to man.

      In my opinion the doctrine of trinity is not important anyway. It is a red herring thrown in to cause confusion and dissension among christians to take them away from the key truths of the New Covenant which are, truth, freedom, repentance, forgiveness, grace, righteousness, love, salvation and so on. Whether trinity is true or not will not lead a person to salvation in Jesus Christ, and that is the most important facet of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Whether I am right or wrong about trinity will not cause the Lord to accept or reject me, and the same can be said for every other person on earth. What is important is to become a new creation in Jesus Christ and to accept the salvation He offers and to worship God in spirit and truth.

      Francis…I am not trying to be confrontational here but simply to explain my thoughts on this matter, just as you are doing too. There is more that I can add to this, but comments should be for comments, not long dissertations. To that end I thank you for your input and comments and do feel free to continue to comment about this or anything else on my site.

      God bless,
      John

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