The Christian Trinity

Discussion in 'Christianity' started by Amulek, Jun 4, 2005.

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  1. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Lol, interesting way to put things...but it makes sense.

    v/r

    Q
     
  2. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Ok, now I'm confused. I thought JWs rejected the Trinity. :confused:

    lunamoth
     
  3. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    They do...
     
  4. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    OK, well I know that that family description is not how I think about the Trinity, but then again it is a Mystery and many Christians have ways of explaining it that are not to my understanding...just trying to learn here. :)

    lunamoth
     
  5. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Fair enough, I will rephrase:

    Re: The Christian Trinity
    No where does it state that Jesus is the first born of creation. It does specifically state that before all was, Jesus describes Himself as "I AM Who AM." This is spoken in the present, though Jesus is describing the past and before it's beginnings. Second, the first fathers did speak of the three parts of God, including the Holy Spirit being a personality, not a force. In fact there are at least forty specific references in the Old and New testement that identify the personality and thinking of the Holy Spirit, and identifies the Holy Spirit as being God.

    [size=-1]1) Helps: Jn 14:16,26, 15:26, 16:7, Rom 8:26, 1 Jn 2:1.[/size]
    [size=-1]2) Glorifies: Jn 16:13-14.[/size]
    [size=-1]3) Can be Known: Jn 14:17.[/size]
    [size=-1]4) Gives Abilities: Acts 2:4, 1 Cor 12:7-11.[/size]
    [size=-1]5) Referred to as "He": Jn 14:26, 15:26, 16:7-8,13.[/size]
    [size=-1]6) Loves: Rom 15:30.[/size]
    [size=-1]7) Guides: Jn 16:13.[/size]
    [size=-1]8) Comforts: Jn 14:26, 15:26, 16:7, Acts 9:31.[/size]
    [size=-1]9) Teaches: Lk 12:12, Jn 14:26.[/size]
    [size=-1]10) Reminds: Jn 14:26.[/size]
    [size=-1]11) Bears Witness: Jn 15:26, Acts 5:32, Rom 8:16.[/size]
    [size=-1]12) Has Impulses: Jn 16:13.[/size]
    [size=-1]13) Hears: Jn 16:13.[/size]
    [size=-1]14) Leads: Mt 4:1, Acts 8:39, Rom 8:14.[/size]
    [size=-1]15) Pleads: Rom 8:26-27.[/size]
    [size=-1]16) Longs (Yearns): Jas 4:5.[/size]
    [size=-1]17) Wills: 1 Cor 12:11.[/size]
    [size=-1]18) Thinks: Acts 15:25,28.[/size]
    [size=-1]19) Sends: Acts 13:4.[/size]
    [size=-1]20) Dispatches: Acts 10:20.[/size]
    [size=-1]21) Impels: Mk 1:12.[/size]
    [size=-1]22) Speaks: Jn 16:13-15, Acts 8:29, 10:19, 11:12, 13:2.[/size]
    [size=-1]23) Forbids: Acts 16:6-7.[/size]
    [size=-1]24) Appoints: Acts 20:28.[/size]
    [size=-1]25) Reveals: Lk 2:26, 1 Cor 2:10.[/size]
    [size=-1]26) Calls to Ministry: Acts 13:2.[/size]
    [size=-1]27) Can be Grieved: Is 63:10, Eph 4:30.[/size]
    [size=-1]28) Can be Insulted: Heb 10:29.[/size]
    [size=-1]29) Can be Lied to: Acts 5:3-4.[/size]
    [size=-1]30) Can be Blasphemed: Mt 12:31-32.[/size]
    [size=-1]31) Strives: Gen 6:3.[/size]
    [size=-1]32) Is Knowledgeable: Is 40:13, Acts 10:19, 1 Cor 2:10-13.[/size]
    [size=-1]33) Can be Vexed: Is 63:10.[/size]
    [size=-1]34) Judges: Jn 16:8.[/size]
    [size=-1]35) Prophesies: Acts 21:11, 28:25, 1 Tim 4:1.[/size]
    [size=-1]36) Has Fellowship: 2 Cor 13:14.[/size]
    [size=-1]37) Gives Grace: Heb 10:29.[/size]
    [size=-1]38) Agrees: 1 Jn 5:7-8.[/size]
    [size=-1]39) Offers Life: 2 Cor 3:6, Rev 22:17.[/size]
    [size=-1]40) Is the Creator: Job 33:4.[/size]

    Now there is a problem. If Jesus at His baptism was seen to have the Holy Spirit decend upon him before witnesses, and those same witnessed heard the Father from heaven stating how pleased He was with the actions of Jesus, at the same time, and if Jesus is the Word, and was with the Father, and in the Father and the Father in Him and the Word was God (as noted by John 1), then to say that the Holy Spirit is not God, and Jesus is not God, can be construed as blasphemy...(only God can be blasphemed). The Bible is also specific about denying the Holy Spirit as being the only unforgivable sin for man (again, only God can be blasphemed).

    So, there is no denying the existence of God the father (between you and me).

    But the Holy Spirit of God is shown to have personality, hence is person, not a force.

    And Jesus clearly states, "I AM WHO AM". And Isaiah clearly states the name of God is "I AM".

    And we read that all three were witnessed to be present at the same time before man, at least once...

    As my folks pointed out, three distinct personalities, one GodHead (which is the mystery). However 1/3rd times 3/1 equals...1 which means if Three can be shown to be One in a simple math equation, there is something to ponder about the Trinity. ;)



    Mind, Body, Spirit...three distinct parts of one person. or three entities with one purpose. Who knows for certain? Only that there is something about the trinity that is so important for Christians to accept and believe.

    v/r

    Q
     
  6. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Hi Q, no arguements from me about this. :) I totally agree that the Holy Spirit is one of the three Persons and is a Person, not a force. The Comforter, the Counselor, the One Who Jesus sends. I accept the Mystery of the Three as One. I also understand that it is technically heresy to think of the Three Persons as three different roles of God (modalism, goes to far affirming the Unity of God) or as three equal but independent autonomous Persons (tritheism, goes to far affirming the distinctiveness of the Three Persons). From: Trinity.

    lunamoth
     
  7. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Agreed. :)
     
  8. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    they do
     
  9. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    The idea of the trinity was only adopted by the Church three hundred years after the death of our Lord...... people can throw scriptures around but if they are not based on accurrate knowledge of the bible it is futile

    This means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God, and of the one whom you sent forth, Jesus Christ.....John 17;3 yes , we dont need to know about mysterys because the bible is based on accurate knowledge about Jehovah God and Jesus christ .its more important to be faithful to the teaching of Jesus and the early apostles. rather than manmade doctrines , but everyone to their own , thats just the way i feel , it would make me feel that i was an apostate to the true God, to take on other teachings not based on truth of the bible.did not Jesus warn about such things ,best to keep to the bible teaching that is the best .yes Gods name it self means ......He causes to become....... so he can accomplish whatever he whats through his Holyspirit. it is an active force from God

    ,the Bible and history makes clear that the Trinity was unknown throughout Biblical times and for several centuries thereafter

     
  10. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    the Bible and history makes clear that the Trinity was unknown throughout Biblical times and for several centuries thereafter

    I'm sorry, but that is patently wrong - as others have repeatedly shown. Let me repeat again:

    "And the angel answered and said unto her (Mary), The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
    Luke 1:35

    "Going therefore, teach ye all nations: baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit."
    Matthew 28:19

    So Father, Son and Holy Spirit is thoroughly Scriptural - and for those 'with the eyes to see' permeates the Old Testament as well as the New.

    Your issue is not with Scripture, but with the unfolding and understanding of its Revelation. The emergence of doctrine follows Scripture and clarifies it, doctrine does not invent 'add-on' extras to the content of revelation, nor do the Church Councils sit down and decide to invent something - as if pulling a rabbit from a hat.

    Doctrine is, and was always, a means to prevent the faihful falling into error by the provision of a more defined teaching - not a new teaching, but a clarification of what is being taught. Father, Son and Holy Spirit were spoken of by Christ from the very first, and Christians expressed 'a belief in' the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as is evidenced by the Creeds, which would comprise a blesphemous statement if they did not understand that Father, Son and Holy Spirit were Three and One.

    The term 'Trinity' came into use as a means of expressing the coequal and coeval nature of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, it is not a term nor a doctrine that differs from the essential message of Scripture, which in fact provides the entirely of its foundation.

    Thomas
     
  11. mansio

    mansio Well-Known Member

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    It is often stated that things must be considered in their context. What is the religious situation 2000 years ago in Palestine ? The Jews are about to be crushed by the Romans. In that 'end of the world' situation, a Jewish rabbi raises up and decides on reforming Judaism.
    The surrounding pagan religions have stories about a god coming down on earth, often through a virgin birth, to salvage mankind.
    In imitation, some of Jesus' followers consider him a saviour down from heaven and they divinise him, a common process at the time.
    That's of course too much for the Jews who reject them as heretics.
    The newly born Christians write the Gospels in accordance with the Old Testament and the 'prophecies' they fish out of the text.
    Later on theologians begin with the building of the Trinity dogma.
     
  12. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    And I would be very careful about insulting people in the future, who do not believe as you do...you don't know it all.

    Q
     
  13. FriendRob

    FriendRob Well-Known Member

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    Thomas, this is simply historically inaccurate. The formulation "one nature [greek ousia] three persons [greek hypostases]" only came in the fourth century. In fact, the original Nicene creed laid a curse on anyone who used the word "hypostasis" with respect to God: "But those ... who assert that he, the Son of God, is of a different hypostasis or ousia, ... the Catholic and Apostolic Church anathemizes them." It was some 50 years before this word crept back in and eventually became the orthodox formulation.

    In fact, there were MANY different doctrines that were "taught and promulgated" by different groups of Christians. The Gnostics taught a Trinity of "Father, Mother, Son". The Ebionites, a group of Jewish Christians, taught that Jesus was a man, not a god. The Arians taught that Jesus was divine, but subordinate to God. ALL of these groups traced their ideas back to the Apostles. If you want to believe that the Roman Catholic church ended up with the "correct'" doctrine, that's fine, but don't try to claim that that interpretation had been held since apostolic times, because that's just false.

    Before the fourth century, there were NO Christians who believed in "one Nature, Three Persons" of God. Origin is considered one of the "Church Fathers", and is about as orthodox as you can get for his time (c. 185- 250 AD). In one place he formulates a doctrine of "one Power, two gods". So if YOU wish to argue otherwise, you have to show that the "one Nature, Three Persons" formulation existed from the earliest times.
     
  14. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Since we can't know what the eariliest church thought (unless records can be found for the same), I guess we have to go with the writings of the NT (and I suspect, the Apocrypha). That puts it at about 70-150 AD. However, the OT is older than that, and the references to a Trinity are there in plain sight (and no, I do not wish to repost what I've already posted to back this up).

    That means the earliest foundations of the church. That also means that Thomas is not historically inaccurate, by a long shot.


    Further more, the Nicene Creed though beautiful in thought and design, is not biblical in nature, therefore the "curse" is irrelavent. As is the curse in the Bible today as noted in Revelations by John (the other John). That curse was meant only for the book of Revelation, not the Bible as a whole.

    The issue here is not whether a trinity was ever used before, during or after Christianity, but what the Christian Trinity is.

    It isn't Father, Mother, Son (though I like the idea of the perfect family), it is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These concepts are pre-Christian scripture, but still in the OT, and plain as day.

    This is speculation, not fact, unless there is historical evidence to be provided to back this notion and counter that evidence which has already been presented for?...

    Kinda like declaring that Constatine founded the Church...he didn't, but many think he did. History shows he probably saved the church that already existed, and had done so for 250 years before his birth.

    Now, if anyone has evidence to the contrary, please present it. I would be most interested in this "evidence".

    v/r

    Q
     
  15. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    yes you are right i dont know it all , in fact i dont know anything .but the bible as Gods word is my Guide. if i stick to that , i cant go wrong .
     
  16. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    the holy spirit of Jehovah God has great power , it can acomplish great things
    Holy spirit will come upon you, and power of the Most High will overshadow you. For that reason also what is born will be called holy, God’s Son. And, look! Elizabeth your relative has also herself conceived a son, in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her, the so-called barren woman; because with God no declaration will be an impossibility." Then Mary said: "Look! Jehovah’s slave girl! May it take place with me according to your declaration." At that the angel departed from her.......yes even the aged Elizabeth concieved with the active force of God . when Jehovah uses his active force it can acomplish many things

     
  17. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    Why would all the God-inspired Bible writers speak of God as one person if he were actually three persons? What purpose would that serve, except to mislead people? Surely, if God were composed of three persons, he would have had his Bible writers make it abundantly clear so that there could be no doubt about it. At least the writers of the Christian Greek Scriptures who had personal contact with God’s own Son would have done so. But they did not:confused:

     
  18. Kelcie

    Kelcie Kelcie

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    Hi Mee,

    Perhaps originally the Bible was God-inspired as you put it. Can we, however, be really one hundred percent be certain that in the different translations that are available today that the original texts were not changed or heavily influenced by the translators own personal beliefs. Man has a way of omitting many things. Whether it is intentional or nonintentional, loss of one word can take a whole meaning out of context.

    We are all at different levels of understanding the holy trinity. What you hold to be true, is true for you no more no less. It does not make you wrong. It just is right for you at the moment. Others understanding too is right for them in this moment.

    I will not quote what is in the bible to justify my experience with God and my understanding of the holy trinity simply because my truth will differ from someone elses. Finding the common thread in your truth with anothers is the fun part about finding greater truths about the holy trinity.

    I will however, say that those who have clearly shown (quite well I might add) their understanding thus far brings me further in to realizing just how many levels of understanding their can be. (Levels in this context does not mean higher or lower)

    Words are only vessels that carry the inherent message of truth, they are in themselves not the truth.

    Kelcie:)
     
  19. Kelcie

    Kelcie Kelcie

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    Hi Mansio,

    It is interesting that you bring up the religious situation 2000 years ago. Apparently there is rumour (It is rumour because I did not see the program or read the book) that Jesus was in fact a desciple of Mary Magdelene! I dont wish to start a war in this thread but I was just wondering whether any one else heard about it. The rumour reports that because the Romans considered women as subordinate to men they changed the original texts and changed she to he and Mary to Jesus. The rumour also reports that the pope himself publicly announced that this was so. If this were in fact true, it would throw the whole father son and holy spirit or holy trinity concept out the window.

    For me it makes no difference whether or not it was Mary or Jesus, because regardless there is much truth to be gained from the bible and its accounts.

    My understanding of the Holy Trinity is far more complex then the biblical accounts or historical accounts and fits in whether it was Mary or Jesus.

    I just thought someone might know where this rumour came from is all.:rolleyes:

    Kelcie:)
     
  20. catlick

    catlick New Member

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    A Very Good Question indeed, instead of giving you all the theological information I will just keep it simple.

    Ok take the possiton that God is One being, with three distinct persons, actually having read what you said, it seems your distinguishing the 3 persons as three distinct gods. anyway 1 god 3 persons.

    God the Father 1 person
    God the Son 1 Person
    God the Holy Ghost 1 person

    Father + Son + Holy Ghost = God.

    To find out why JC prayed to the person of God called the father we need to look at Christ himself, he was concieved by the Holy Sprit, that is God, so he was divine, he was Born of the Virgin Mary and made Man so he was human too.

    He had both the divine nature and human nature, he therefore had the weakness of temptation as we see in both the Garden of Gethsemene and in the wilderness. But he has the strengh of divinity to over come it, his weakness and fear of the passion tempted him to want to not be crucified a understandable desire of human nature. But the father the 1st person does not have a human nature and no weakness, so he prayed that the father would strenghen his human nature by way of his divine nature so that he could do what he had to do and that is why he prayed to the Father.
     
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