Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

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Proselytiser of Jah
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Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#1 Post by Proselytiser of Jah » 4 months ago

Since I've seen a number of people here across the boards with differing views of the Trinty, and whether Jesus is Jehovah, I thought I'd share my personal research and scriptural reasonings to contribute to the overall discussion and our ever building archive of knowledge/study we have here.

I am going to address the "fors and againsts" for the Trinity, as well as my own personal stance.

I'm going to start out by listing all the scriptures in which I believe on plain surface reading are directly against the notion of Jesus being Jehovah, then I will post the scriptures which appear to be "for" on plain surface reading, and not just put a "spin" on them to argue a side, but discuss "framworking", within the limits of "Sola Scriptura" (the scriptures only, and no outside philosophy), as well as Biblical translations, root Hebrew/Greek words, and finally my thoughts on the secular history of the Trinity in the Early Church.

(If I miss any important scriptures, feel free to share, but I feel what I will discuss here will be enough in order to come to a personal conclusion on the matter, I am not looking to build an archive of all references, but merly to get to the core of the debate by targeting the main references, which are enough to begin discussing framework.)

Scriptural References

Scriptures Against
  • Proverbs 8:22-23,30
    Matthew 3:17
    John 8:54
    John 12:23,27-28
    John 12:44-55
    John 14:1
    John 14:10,12,16-17
    Mark 10:18
    Matthew 16:15-16
    John 20:17
    Matthew 26:39
    John 17:5
    Matthew 27:43
    1 Timothy 2:5,Galatians 3:20
    Matthew 24:36
    John 20:31
    John 7:28-29
    John 14:31
    Romans 8:34
    John 17:11
    1 Corinthians 11:3
    Philippians 2:5-6,9
    Hebrews 1:1-2,8-9
    1 Peter 2:23
    2 Peter 1:16-18
    Hebrews 5:7
    Revelation 1:1-2

Questionable Scriptures (For OR Against)
  • "For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God/Divine/godlike(?), Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace". - Isaiah 9:6
    “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of/over(?)(?) all creation“ – Colossians 1:15
    "For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made with human hands that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence/before God(?)" - Hebrews 9:24
    "For there are three that testify, the Spirit, the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement/one(?)". - 1 John 5:7-8
    "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word wasGod/a god/divine/godlike(?)". - John 1:1
    John 8:57-58, (Exodus 3:14 - "God said to Moses, “I am who I am/become what I become(?). This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am/I become(?) has sent me to you)
    “No man has seen God at any time; the only-begotten God/Divine/godlike one(?) who is at the Father’s side is the one who has explained Him” - John 1:18

Scriptures For
  • Revelation 1:8, Revelation 22:6, Revelation 22:16
    Isaiah 44:6, Isaiah 48:12-13, Revelation 1:8, Revelation 1:17, Revelation 21:6, Revelation 22:12-13

Now we have our scriptural references.

On the one hand, we have many scriptures where it appears Jesus is not God, but was sent by God, does the will of God and not his own, talks to God, worships God, is rewarded by God, pleads to God, is saved by God, God speaking from Heaven whilst Jesus is on Earth, and Jesus is compared to his Apostles as brothers as companions to be rewarded in an alike manner to them, but with a higher reward than they, is sat besides God, and assists God.

But we also have scriptures which appear to say Jesus is the alpha and omega, that 'God' sent 'his' angel to John, and that later it says it was 'Jesus' who sent 'his' angel to John...

And we also have questionable scriptures of word translation, which can support either framework, depending on their translation, of which these phrases may mean several things and can alter depending on context.



Building our Framework

It's time to introduce the concept of "creating a framework". We have two options;

Either, we look at the scriptures "FOR" the trinity, that Jesus is God, and then we translate the rest of the Bible through that lens, meaning we would have to say Jesus was talking to himself, resucing himself, worshiping himself, and that any voice from God to him, on Earth or in Heaven, is some sort of "internal monolouge", or that God has voices in his head like thoughts which can be verbally heard by others and that God literally has physical conversations with his own conciousness, of which have their own indepentant. This framework is what creates the "Trinity" the teaching that the Father is not the Son, but both are God, which we must remember, does not appear in scripture, if we wish to make this statement, we must have it verbatim, following the rule of Sola Scriptura.

On the other hand, if we look at all the scriptures through the lens of "AGAINST" the trinity, then likewise we must find alternative context to fit that framework based in scripture and nowhere else. In this we would claim that such descriptions such as "alpha and omega" are not unique titles to God Almighty, and we also would question such things as; "who is speaking" in Revelation, was there more than one angel, or was one angel speaking on behalf of two people? Is the angel of God also the Angel of Jesus in a manner of proxy? Can we show other examples in the Bible of this outlook?

Our framework must be;
1.Rooted in scripture
2.Harmonious (no contradictions) with the entire Old & New Testament Bible in doctrine, writing style, language and structure


The "Questionable Scriptures"

First I'm going to adress the "questionable scriptures", because it is in ambiguity through which uncertainty and debate is born.

  • 1 John 5:7
    biblehub. com/1_john/5-7.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/1_john/5-7.htm
The history of this verse has been a disruptive one. Many translations of the Bible quote it this way; “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one”. However, it is documented that the oldest translations of this verses do not contain anything beyond there being three witnesses bearers; “ὅτι τρεῖς εἰσὶν are οἱ μαρτυροῦντες” – “There are three that are testifying”.

Various scholars state:

“These words are spurious and have no right to stand in the New Testament is certain.”Professor Bruce M. Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament.

“This text concerning the heavenly witness is not contained in any Greek manuscript which was written earlier than the fifteenth century. It is not cited by any of the ecclesiastical writers; not by any of early Latin fathers even when the subjects upon which they treated would naturally have lead them to appeal to its authority. It is therefore evidently spurious.” Benjamin Wilson, Emphatic Diaglott

“In the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the Bibles were corrected by LanFrank, Archbishop of Canterbury, and by Nicholas, a cardinal and librarian of the Roman church, secundum Ortodoxam fidem. Not withstanding these corrections, the passage is still wanting in twenty-five Latin manuscripts, the oldest and fairest; two qualities seldom united, except in manuscripts…. The three witnesses have been established in our Greek Testaments by the prudence of Erasmus; the honest bigotry of the Complutensian editors; the typographical fraud, or error, of Robert Stephens in the placing of a crotchet and the deliberate falsehood, or strange misapprehension, of Theodore Beza. The evidence of the three heavenly witnesses would now be rejected in any court of justice; but prejudice is blind, authority is deaf, and our vulgar Bibles will ever be polluted by this spurious text.” – Edward Gibobn

It should also be noticed that verse 8, has many translations, of which many say "in agreement", thus this could easily fit into a framework AGAINST the trinity, for it describes the unifcation or the working together of different beings for a single purpose, in the same spirit of John 17:21 where the Apostles are said to be "one" in the "manner Jesus and God are one". Thus, it is more scriptually feasible in my opinion, that 1 John speaks of unification, not literal oneness of being, lest we wish to claim also that the Apostles are one being in the literal manner of the "Mighty Morphing Power Rangers".

Therefore, 1 John 5:7 I contest, would not be able to be used to say "Jesus is God".

  • John 1:1
    biblehub. com/john/1-1.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/john/1-1.htm
This verse has been a very popular verse to advocate the trinity. However, this is based upon surface reading alone and taking for granted the modern translations written by Trinitarians. So for fairness I will also add here other translations, not easily found online which give it an alternate rendering.


“…and the word was a god.”The New Testament in an Improved Version, Upon the Basis of Archbishop Newcome’s New Translation: With a Corrected Text, 1808.
“…and a god was the word.”The Emphatic Diaglott, interlinear reading, by Benjamin Wilson, 1864.
“…and the Word was a divine being.”La Bible du Centenaire, L’Evangile selon Jean, 1928.
“…and the Word was divine.”The Bible—An American Translation,1935
“and of a divine kind was the Word.”Das Neue Testament, Ludwig Thimme, 1946
“and the Word was a God.”The New Testament, James L. Tomanek, 1958
“…and a god (or, of a divine kind) was the Word.”Das Evangelium nach Johannes, 1975
“…and godlike kind was the Logos.”Das Evangelium nach Johannes, 1978

The root of these renderings can be found in the original Greek.

Throughout the scriptures there is a differentiation between the words used to refer to God, pagan gods and gods. One could even say the word “god” as written in our modern English Bibles in these specific instances is a mistranslation of the original Greek, for term in which our modern Bibles write “god” in these instances is “the·osʹ (Θεός)”. When referring to Almighty God; YHVH, a “Greek definite article” is used in the word; “Ho” (`o) meaning “the” (pronounced “thee”). When referring to Jesus being “god” the Ho definite article is never used, but when referring to Jehovah God it is, “Ho the·os (`o Θεός)”, ‘The’ God.

In the same manner, in the Torah, God Almighty is uniquely referred to in Hebrew as "El-Shaddai", where as Jesus and other lesser beings, as only ever to my knowledge called "El, Elohim, Baal" (godly/mighty/divine person, lord).

Whilst the definite form of the word referred to the Almighty God, creator of all things, the non-definite form of the word simply renders the meaning; “divine”, “mighty one” or “strong one”. From the same root word Satan the Devil is called the “god” or theos of this world at 2 Corinthians 4:4. Jesus himself even at one time referred to the judges in Israel as “gods” with the non-definite form of theos, the same form of the word that was used when speaking of ‘him’ as a “god”; John 10:34

Thus, if we are to framework "theos" without the Ho article as Almighty God by definition, then Satan is God, Molech is God, Baal (the false deity) is God, and so are the judges of Israel. But if we keep purely to the language definition and pattern of scripture, then Theos without Ho, is to mean "divine" or "god like". Of which I do not contest that Jesus is divine, for God raised him to a position above all other names (with exception to his own of which the scriptures state our Lord Jesus is subservient to 1 Corinthians 15:24), this is harmonious.

“Theos: a deity, figuratively, a magistrate. Especially when used with the definite article “Ho”: the supreme Divinity; by Hebraism, very God [Almighty God, YHVH the Father of Jesus.]”Strong’s concordance (Hebrew & Greek Translation Lexicon)

  • Colossians 1:15
    biblehub. com/colossians/1-15.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/colossians/1-15.htm
In regards to this scripture, some say “image” is a title of God, or some "physical part" of God, a "manifestation" that is "projected" from Him to represent himself in physical form, and that Jesus is called “the image” and that “the image” made us, as Gensis states we are made in “his image”; Genesis 1:27. Another debate in this verse is over that of the translation Firstborn "over" or "of".

To firstly look at what "image" is defined as. Abising by the rule of Sola Scriptura, we must look to the Bible only to find our definition of the word. In ancient Hebrew (tselem – צֶ֫לֶם) and Greek (eikón – εἰκὼν) image is to mean “similar”, "in likeness to" or "representative of" in the form of an artistic expression of imitation (such as a statue, painting, model). Thus, taken on its own merit, without inserting any other ideas from outside of the scriptures or its definitions, Jesus is the image of God, meaning "alike". In turn, ankind is described as being “similar to God and the Son” in that we have a higher consciousness, self awareness, free will and morality as opposed to the animal kingdom. Just as Genesis 1:26 plainly states; “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness“, which uses the exact same word to describe how Jesus is the image of God. At Genesis 5:3, the same again is said in regards to one of Adam’s sons. That is the meaning of being the “image” of something, nothing more, nothing less. The Bible never states that the word “image” or phrase “image of” means anything else, any terminolgy beyond this definition of image is invented outside of scripture. Thus we can only state this verse says "he is similar to God".

As for the debate of translation between "over or of", we again must look to the Greek renderings. The original word; πάσης-pas, simply means “all”, there is no term which states “over” in the oldest manuscripts, as such it literally reads “Firstborn all creation”. This is why many translations word it “Firstborn of all”, or “Firstborn of every kind”.

“πάσης, Pas. Usage: all, the whole, every kind of. 3956 pás – each, every; each “part(s) of a totality” (L & N, 1, 59.24). 3956 /pás (“each, every”) means “all” in the sense of “each (every) part that applies.” The emphasis of the total picture then is on “one piece at a time.” 365 (ananeóō) then focuses on the part(s) making up the whole – viewing the whole in terms of the individual parts. [When 3956 (pás) modifies a word with the definite article it has “extensive-intensive” force – and is straightforward intensive when the Greek definite article is lacking.]”. – Strong’s Concordance & HELPS Word-studies.

Nevertheless, regardless of "over vs of", the opening of the verse also states the "Firstborn", prototokos, of which literally means "to be birthed first". Whereas the scriptures state in regards to God: Psalm 90:2, Psalm 93:2. God is not born, but always was. Thus God, the Father is said to be eternal, but here Jesus the Son, is not said to be. Thus this verse does not verbatim state Jesus is Almighty YHVH God, only does it through "inference" by applying definitions to words which do not originate in the scriptures.

  • John 1:18
    biblehub. com/john/1-18.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/john/1-18.htm
Again, the same statements can be made in regards to this scripture and that of Colossians 1:15, and John 1:1. Jesus, the Son, is begotten, "created", "made", "born", the only one created directly by God alone, and he is described, not as God Almighty, but "divine", in the form of theos, absent of the Ho article. Thus, this scripture has not stated that Jesus is Almighty God, but that he is in close relationship to him and is the one who has revealed the will of God to us.

  • Hebrews 9:24
    biblehub. com/hebrews/9-24.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/hebrews/9-24.htm
Some interpret this in different ways. Those who believe Jesus is God say "Jesus returned to his Godly form" in Heaven, meaning "he is Almighty God" and is now "presenting himself" as such for us. However, many translations render him "appearing before" God. This would seem in my opinion more harmonious to other scriptures we have already seen where Jesus is said to be at God's "right hand", "worshipping before him", and "mediating" for us before him. But regardless, this scripture does not verbatim say Jesus is God, but rather, much more evidence sways toward him being "before" God, in the manner of 2 Corinthians 2:10 which uses the same root word "prosópon", where Paul states he was before Christ.

  • John 8:57-58
    biblehub. com/john/8-57.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/john/8-57.htm
    biblehub. com/john/8-58.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/john/8-58.htm
Here is a bit of a sticky one on the surface. This scripture is often considered a "holy grail" by those who would advocate Jesus is God, for they would state this verse is where Jesus word for word declares himself to be YHVH, the God of Moses as stated in Exodus 3:14, by stating "I AM". What is important to note is that the modern translations only captialise the I AM, such is not found in the manuscripts as to show that Jesus was stating a name or title.

Upon examining the Hebrew and Greek (respectively) of these verses, one will note that YHVH does not state he is "I AM", but it is a unique one time translation of the word "eh·yeh" or "hayah", which means "to fall out, come to pass, become, be" according to Strong's Concordance. Note here in the following references, the verse at Exodus is a one time translation of this specific form of the root word. https://biblehub.com/hebrew/ehyeh_1961.htm, even in references which state "I am" in them, it should be noted that upon direct inspection, the word is always "become" (for example https://biblehub.com/interlinear/job/17-6.htm , compare to the previous link where Job 17:16 is referenced in the list to be saying "I am").

An additional note is that all uses of the word does not appear to be a "name" or "title," but rather is a statement of action, plan, or premeditation. As such God in Exodus is telling Moses he will act as he will see fit, and to tell Israel the same thing, that "he will become" is being sent to them.

Examining John 8:57-58, completely different words are used, not only is it not the same phrase, they are two seperate phrases "ego" and "emi", which mean respectively "I" "am" in the most common every day form and usage. All references show it is never used to refer to "become" (as opposed to God's statement at Exodus) https://biblehub.com/greek/eimi_1510.htm. Literally, the term "I am" is not being used as a title, but an answer to a question, that is in context to the Jews who ask him "are you older than Abraham" in which Jesus responds, not with a name or title, but merely with "yes, truly I am", to confirm their statement in regards to his age, and in response, the Jews then go to stone him, and falsely accuse him of claiming to be God himself due to "how old" he claimed he was, as to invent a charge of apostasy toward him at John 10:33, of which Jesus corrects them in John 10:34 and lays claim to the term "theos" to defend himself, by means of comparing himself to the judges of Israel and how they too claimed the form of "theos", to be "divine", "mighty", "godlike". If Jesus was to be claiming he was Almighty God, then in this same sentence he claims the judges of Israel to also be YHVH, but context reveals this not to be the case. Thus, this verse holds no quotation from Jesus claiming the idenity or name of God, but only false accusations from desperate pharisees, just as did when they claimed he was of Satan (Luke 11:15).

  • Isaiah 9:6
    biblehub. com/isaiah/9-6.htm
    biblehub. com/interlinear/isaiah/9-6.htm
This verse is often cited to prove Jesus is God as it calls him on the surface "mighty God" and "Eternal Father". Of course, in light of the previous explained definitions of "theos", likewise here, Jesus is called "El", which has the same conotation, meaning "divine, godlike" according to both Strong's and NAS Exhaustive Concordance, which is used to describe other beings in the Bible, as opposed to El-Shaddai, God Almighty.

In regards to Eternal Father, this 'could' be cited as a singular prophecy that Jesus would be known to be God, the Father. However, we must also take note, that this verse is speaking of "the Son", and calling the Son the Father is not at all compatible with trintarian theology, which states the Son is not the Father (and thus is not to be 'called' Father). Interestingly, this phrase "Everlasting Father" is the only occurance found in the scriptures, and the word in Hebrew is "ă·ḇî·‘aḏ", or "ad", which one translation, the Biblos Interlinear under Englishman's Concordance reads as "Eternal Prince of Peace", and voids the word Father altgoether.

The definition according to Strong's Concordance is "perpetuity", and again in NAS Concordance: "all (1), continually (1), Eternal (1), ever (15), forever (26), forever* (1), forevermore* (2), old (1), perpetual (1)". Again, no mention of Father. Thus the English translation of Isaiah 9:6 inserting Father may be erronous if not spurious, in like manner to other verses which inserted trinitarian phrases later found not in early manuscripts (such as "the three are one"). If not an error however, it could also be contexualised in a non-trinitarian context as Jesus being in a fatherly position as he represents his Father on the kingly throne, or perhaps has fulfillment in being a father of the children of the marriage of Christ, that is to his Bride of the 144,000 and the blessings upon mankind from that marriage. But this would be conjecture. As such the title of Eternal Father could be at best be ambiguous in meaning if genuine, but I would regard it highly untrustworthy considering examination of the translations.



Applying the FOR Framework

With the questionable scriptures adressed, I will now go forward by giving the Trinitarian lens a head start and benefit of the doubt through the scriptures we 'do' have with a strong case for claiming Jesus is God, through association of scriptural comparisons and titles applying to both the Father and the Son: Alpha Omega, First Last, God's/Jesus' Angel.

This means through this lens, we can advocate for Jesus being God, and any and all references to God and Jesus conversing, Jesus being his image and likeness, is some sort of "inner experience", self interaction or form of multi divine persona in some mysterious manner we do not understand, that all accounts of self worship, rescue, favour, hearing are some sort of "metaphysical" or "metaspritual" terminology on part of the NT writers.

However, as in the stated framework rules of harmony in all the scriptures, we must look for other accounts which use this exact same textual pattern, and apply this same framework. Scouring the scriptures for such examples we find at least four cases we can claim the duality, trinity, or multi-personhood of other beings:

The first, on the basis of Jesus being the image of God, I will make a claim that Seth, the firstborn son of Adam, is also Adam (Genesis 5:3)

Second, I shall claim the Apostles will be one being in Heaven, 12 persons in one spirit body, of whom are also God, as they are in the Father and Son (John 17:21)

And thirdly and finally, the greatest and most shocking claim of all, I will say Satan is God...

(1 Chronicles 21:1, 2 Samuel 24:1, Job 1:6-12, Job 42:11, 2 Corinthians 4:4).

I argue, through the textual lens of the Trinity, in how Revelation is the only direct source to claim Jesus to be God, I target the same style of passages to make my claims here that Satan is God, that despite any written individuality, conversations, seperation, interaction, that through the verses putting them both in the same position, and titles, just as Jesus is called theos and is argumentation that he is God, so do I state that Satan is God, who is seen to incite David and hurt Job, of which so is the Almighty God. Thus Satan, Jesus and Jehovah, are one.


Applying the AGAINST Framework

To oppose my above claims, then I contest, to read the passages quoted through another lens, through the conversation of Satan speaking to God, that it is "through proxy" that God "causes" or "allows" bad things to happen, for Satan to attack people, and this is the meaning of the language, and textual structure, so then do I say this lens must be applied to the verses of Jesus' conversations and interactions with God as two individuals, and that these verses of Revelation likewise be seen as proxy, that the angel represents Christ, who in turn represents God, cause and effect: 1 Chronicles 21:1, 2 Samuel 24:1 / Revelation 1:8, Revelation 22:6, Revelation 22:16.

That the title of alpha and omega, not be seen as a God-only title, but contextual, of heavenly authority, just as it is with titles of divinity and godliness.

We cannot have our cake and eat it, the same measuring stick must be used.

In applying the "against" framework, my opinion argues that no textual contradiction, nor doctrinal contradiction, nor language contradiction can be found. All things are in place as they should be, and fits into the style of the Hebrew writing as it was for thousands of years. Wholistic and logical.

God YHVH is one, his Son Jesus is raised as a divine king at his side of whom the universe will worship and obey by decree of the highest God of whom all ultimate worship and obidience belongs, who was at his side before the universe was, who will hand back the kingdom after the 1000 years, of whom God loves and is fond, and in turn the Son loves God.



Secular History of the Trinity


It is no secret, that the trinity was formed at least 200-300 years after John's death. This doctrine was born in an era of apostasy and bloodshed, the doctrine itself surrounded by such bloodshed. The death of Arius (suspected by some historians to be assasination by the Athanasians), the violence of church bishops, the politics of Rome....

It is not without merit to mention and consider, that the Gnostics themselves claimed YHVH was Satan on the very framework I spoke of, and thus wished to replace him with different Gods. It was they who likely contributed to the supression of God's name amongst the Christians, along with the Jews who hated Christians. From the same Greek philosophers (many of whom became high ranking Christians themselves) the Gnostics drew from, so did the early creeds of the Roman church which birthed Catholicsm, and the strikingly similar framework of the trinity which contexualised the Hebrew and Greek sciptures to create and infer these associations between the Father and Son.

Though there was an agreement on the trinity at Nicea under Constatine(as most Christians know) with many of the bishops being uncomfortable with the fact, the controversy lasted for well over 200 more years if not more. There were riots, suspicions, deaths and schemes. For some time after, according historical church documents, the trinity was later considered herersy by the entire church after several more councils, and the Athanasian Creed (those who created it at Nicea) were excommunicated, as Arianism was for some time then considered orthodox (a fact very few know), until political manipulation from the Athanasians caused the excommunication of the Arians, and the law binding trinity to be an "eternal doctrine" of Christendom, of which was signed unwittingly once more by many, under secular pressure.

As quoted:

"Some Christians, among them Arius and Eusebius of Nicomedia, had a stronger sense of historical continuity than others... for whom Christianity seemed a natural extension of and improvement on Judaism, tended to be Arians of one sort or another. By contrast, the strongest anti-Arians experienced their present as a sharp break with the past. It was they who demanded, in effect, that Christianity be “updated” by blurring or even obliterating the long-accepted distinction between the Father and the Son.

From the perspective of our own time, it may seem strange to think of Arian “heretics” as conservatives, but emphasizing Jesus’ humanity and God’s transcendent otherness had never seemed heretical in the East... For young militants like Athanasius, however, ancient modes of thought and cultural values were increasingly irrelevant.

That is where matters stood in 325, when Hosius arrived in Alexandria with Constantine’s letter. If, at this point, the matter were put to a vote of the Eastern bishops, the “Eusebian party” (Arians) would probably have won. But the reaction of the defeated anti-Arians would surely have been violent. Already, Alexander was characterizing Arius' philosophy as a heretical attack on Jesus divinity, and Athanasius had compared the Arians to the cruci-fiers of Christ. Language this inflammatory was an invitation to violence—and both sides were involved in increasingly violent street battles.

...the people of western Europe—would not accept a Jesus who was too much like them. They knew they were feeble sinners, struggling to survive in a hostile environment. The Christ they wanted and needed was a High God who could save them by His grace and comfort them through the ministrations of His Church. In fact, Arian theology implicitly reduced the role of the institutional Church. If Jesus’ life and character were supposed to serve ordinary Christians as a usable model of behavior, the principal mission of the clergy would be to help people transform themselves, not maintain theological and political unity throughout the empire, this was another reason Constantine would probably favor the doctrine of Alexander and Athanasius. The Church he needed was one that would help him keep order among ordinary folk: people who would never become immortal unless God decided for reasons of His own to save them....


As soon as the Council of Antioch had completed its work, Arius and the priest Euzoius wrote to Nicomedia asking for an audience... He (Constantine) ordered them to come to Nicomedia and received them in court in November 327. He and Euzoius came to court, Constantine heard them out and expressed his willingness to help them return to their posts in Alexandria, provided that they produce a written creed demonstrating their orthodoxy. The two men presented a document reminiscent of Eusebius of Caesarea’s original creed; it affirmed their belief in Christ’s divinity without using the word homoousios.

The bishops studied Arius’s creed, questioned him and Euzoius personally, and pronounced their views orthodox... as soon as the council’s decision was made public, Eusebius of Nicornedia and Theognis of Nicaea filed petitions of their own for reinstatement. They agreed to accept the Nicene Creed in toto, including the homoousios (which, of course, they interpreted in a restrictive Arian fashion)... The anti-Arian bishops of Nicornedia and Nicaea were quickly dismissed and replaced by the exiles. A few years later, Arius’s most vehement opponent, Bishop Marcellus of Ancyra, would be excommunicated and deposed on charges of heresy similar to those brought against Eustathius of Antioch... It was an indication that the apparent consensus reached at the Council of Nicaea was, in large part, an illusion produced by the bishops’ desire to please the emperor ...

...As Athanasius’s star fell in the East, Arius’s rose. In 335, while the bishops conferred in Tyre, he was in Constantinople with his friend, Euzoius, and a group of followers... Arius and Euzoius had submitted a creed that he believed to be orthodox... The bishops should make up their own minds by examining the matter at a council in Jerusalem ...

Athanasius and the anti-Arian forces had lost the battle... Gathered in Jerusalem in September, the Eastern bishops... read the emperor’s letter, studied the creed, heard from Arius and Euzoius, and admitted them unconditionally to communion. Arius’s doctrine was sound and apostolic, they said, and his acceptance by the Church would secure Christian unity and peace... Only one bishop dissented. Marcellus of Ancyra, well known for his passionate animosity to Arianism...

The Arian moderates... By the 350s it had apparently succeeded in winning over a substantial majority of bishops and was close to becoming accepted Christian dogma... For forty years after Arius’s death the controversy that bears his name, inflamed by complex interconnections of Church and State, would continue to trouble the Homan world....

In 357 a council of bishops meeting again in Sirmium produced a creed that had enormous impact throughout the Christian world. For the first time, a distinctively Arian statement of faith was formulated by a Church council and presented as orthodox to the entire Christian community...."
- When Jesus became God: The Struggle to Define Christianity during the Last Days of Rome, Richard E. Rubenstein
(If you have not read the book, I highly recomend it, as it is a very in depth and eye opening read of the development of the trinity and history of the early church after John's death).


“We can trace the history of this doctrine, and discover its source, not in the Christian revelation, but in the Platonic philosophy . . . The Trinity is not a doctrine of Christ and his Apostles, but a fiction of the school of the later Platonists.” - A Statement of Reasons, Andrews Norton

“The doctrines of the Logos and the Trinity received their shape from Greek Fathers, who . . . were much influenced, directly or indirectly, by the Platonic philosophy . . . That errors and corruptions crept into the Church from this source can not be denied.” - The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge

"Constantine himself presided, actively guiding the discussions, and personally proposed . . . the crucial formula expressing the relation of Christ to God in the creed issued by the council . . . Overawed by the emperor, the bishops, with two exceptions only, signed the creed, many of them much against their inclination... The show of agreement pleased Constantine, who had no understanding of the theological issues, but in fact there was no unanimity at Nicaea. After the council, the bishops went on teaching as they had before, and the Arian crisis continued for another sixty years. Arius and his followers fought back and managed to regain imperial favor. Athanasius was exiled no fewer than five times. It was very difficult to make his creed stick" (pp. 110-111)... for more than 40 years after the death of Constantine, Arianism was actually the official orthodoxy of the Eastern Empire" - Encyclopedia Britanica.


The reason I speak of some of the secular history here, is to encourage meditation on these scenarios, to show that the introduction of these doctrines was not as smooth, clean or unified as many Christians believe, and to pray in light of the scriptural evidence also discussed, and bare in mind Galatians 5:22-23, Galatians 5:19-21, and whether holy spirit was behind the introduction of the trinity, or something else...


Conclusive statements

I myself, as most can likely tell, do support the notion of Arianism/Semi-Arianism. Whilst I cannot force people to accept my opinion as dogma of course, I can only share "my musings", studies and opinions. But for those who read this I hope that at the very least proves either helpful, interesting, or at the very least thought provoking. :)


Much love to all the Brothers and Sisters here.

-"Podge"
"The fruitage of the Spirit is; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control..." Galatians 5:22-23

Proselytiser of Jah
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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#2 Post by Proselytiser of Jah » 4 months ago

(note, apologies for any typos, bad habit, and I've been typing a long time, lol).
"The fruitage of the Spirit is; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control..." Galatians 5:22-23

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#3 Post by FriendlyDoggo » 3 weeks ago

I'm really shocked by the Trinity doctrine, I didn't know that it was SO widely accepted. The only "arian" churches around are the JWs and LDS and this is very sad because it turns disbelief in the trinity a "cult thing".

P.S Your text is great!
My english isn't very good, sorry any inconvenience.

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#4 Post by AmosAU » 3 weeks ago

FriendlyDoggo wrote: 3 weeks ago I'm really shocked by the Trinity doctrine, I didn't know that it was SO widely accepted. The only "arian" churches around are the JWs and LDS and this is very sad because it turns disbelief in the trinity a "cult thing".

P.S Your text is great!
This is quite false! There are many non trinitarian churches. It's quite wrong to call them Arian. Only some of them are Arian. The two links below list a few of them.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nontrinitarianism

https://www.learnreligions.com/faith-gr ... ine-700367

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#5 Post by AmosAU » 3 weeks ago

Hi POJ.

Thanks for your article.

The Ante Nicene Fathers, give some good information about this. They give around 200 CE as the aproximate date for the first thought of a trinity.
What is not readily known and understaood is that the whole western church were divided about 50/50 on the trinity doctrine. Had Arius not been murdered, it might have been entirely different.....that is, the church general may well have been non trinitarian, with a trinitarian section being a minority. A complete reversal of what it is today.

I did massive studies into this around 2008/2009. Sadly, these studies are all locked in a now dead computer. I hadn't backed them up in time.

It would appear that many later copyists, inserted or altered the older texts to give a trinitarian slant to the NT.

Regards, Amos

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#6 Post by FriendlyDoggo » 3 weeks ago

AmosAU wrote: 3 weeks ago This is quite false! There are many non trinitarian churches. It's quite wrong to call them Arian. Only some of them are Arian. The two links below list a few of them.
That's why I put arian in quotation, they aren't exactly arian and all the others are very lesser known or unitarian.

Take this video where the dude comparate "cults" with "heresies".

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YC2H2wf19Zw

From the comment section:
I find that people who deny the divinity (AKA substantial unity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: Trinity) of Jesus Christ, his atoning sacrifice and/or his resurrection are often the exact same people who believe the weirdest doctrines you can imagine, like the idea that the King James supersedes its own source texts or that God is finished with Israel and the Jews aren’t the remnant of Israel, anyway.

And trying to reason from scripture often just angers them. The last two such people I just talked to both called me a demon before very long.
My english isn't very good, sorry any inconvenience.

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#7 Post by FriendlyDoggo » 3 weeks ago

FriendlyDoggo wrote: 3 weeks ago Take this video where the dude comparate* "cults" with "heresies".
Compare*
My english isn't very good, sorry any inconvenience.

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#8 Post by Proselytiser of Jah » 3 weeks ago

Oh, my post has come back to life :) Appreciate the comments & interaction.

I should mention my article on my website on this has had many updates, refinement and additions since. So people can check that out if they want.

https://proselytiserofjah.wordpress.com ... s-godship/
"The fruitage of the Spirit is; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control..." Galatians 5:22-23

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#9 Post by Proselytiser of Jah » 3 weeks ago

FriendlyDoggo wrote: 3 weeks ago The only "arian" churches around are the JWs and LDS and this is very sad because it turns disbelief in the trinity a "cult thing".
I've actually been trying to find as many groups as I can who are non-trinitarian/arian.

I can find many Unitarians, which I do respect highly, they have a high focus on the original meanings of Hebrew language and culture, however I do disagree with them on other matters (like the claim Jesus did not exist before his birth as a baby on Earth).

But as for arian "groups" with an online presence (some of which have online congregational gathering via zoom, skype, etc), so far I've found:

https://beroeans.net/ (youtube . com/c/BeroeanPickets/about)
https://elihubooks.blogspot.com/2012/05 ... ssion.html (youtube . com/channel/UCMtjmoHN6DIQOHEK2HCvEBQ/about)
https://revelation1412.org/ (youtube . com/user/Revelation1412org/about)
https://arianchurch.com/ (youtube . com/c/ApostolicunitarianBlogspotdotcom/about)
https://www.arianismtoday.com/ (youtube . com/c/ArianismtodayLife/about)

(had to remove the links from the YT pages as there is a URL limit on posting)

Any time I come across them I try to sub to them on my PoJ TY channel or keep them book marked. There are more scattered about than we think, but lacking in unification. It would be nice to establish contact amongst these groups, if they can also accept one another's theological differences and interpretations (should they have many).


Be warned, I don't know enough about all of them or their full beliefs, and some I don't fully agree with 100% on some topics, but these are the sources I have so far. There are also others listed here down the page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nontrinitarianism but many of them are more styled in the "mainstream" denominational structure, sect like, and I know for sure there are a couple of cults listed (such Iglesia ni Cristo, who have a very JW/Catholic mentality of being "the one true chosen church hand selected by God", as do many large denominations).
"The fruitage of the Spirit is; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control..." Galatians 5:22-23

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Re: Personal scriptural musings on The Trinity

#10 Post by Proselytiser of Jah » 3 weeks ago

FriendlyDoggo wrote: 3 weeks ago this is very sad because it turns disbelief in the trinity a "cult thing"
There is a reason for this.

Many will turn it on its head and use it in the way you described. Non-trinitarians = always cults = must be satanic/unchristian. It's a very heavy handed association fallacy, but one that works (I think Satan does this on purpose, that he makes trouble for Christian groups searching for objective truth, and will either label them, or turn them into something ugly, to cause guilt by association with such groups, a master chess player is Satan).



My very good Catholic friend says "all anti-christian satanic cults usually either attack the deity of Christ, or the sacraments, eventually they attack everything Christian and become full on Satanic". So by his standards, anything anti-Catholic is Satanic (very JW mindset some might say). But he had a point where he said "eventually they become anti Christian altogether". There is another reason of course for this... and this is psychological.


Most people who are willing to go against the mainstream grain tend to be more "individualist" than most people, or rebellious, or whatever you like. People who are often brave enough to go against the mainstream, to upset the status quo, often come with... let's say... "baggage", and so you end up with many people, who may very well be telling or revealing some truths, also end up with a lot of weird kinks to them, because with their nature, they also are willing to rebel against other things too (things perhaps they should not).

Many people willing to upset the apple cart, are often people with bad intentions or rebellious attitudes, as opposed to people looking for truth. So "on purpose" they look for excuses to rebel, and not for honest truth. As an ironic side effect, this quest may actually reveal genuine truths. Whilst other truth seekers may be on the other side of that same coin, it's their "rebelliousness", or "individualism" that enables them to discover truth against a status quo. So that comes with side effects.

People associate "going against the status quo" with "rebellion against common man and society". So most people don't like to do such. People feel safe in familiarity and sameness. (It's also likely why the Arian controversy had so much violence and drama involved, because the "original status quo" was either non-trinitarianism/trinitarianism, depending on who you ask).

So it creates this push and pull. With a individualist mentality, You end up with either truth telling outcasts willing to be persecuted, genuine deviants, or cults whos seem to be a mix of both.


(It's also why we have to be on guard, and it's why we have to be exemplary Christians in all things in our life, attitude, conduct, social interactions, etc. It's like people who leave the JW Org... what happens? People who go crazy with their new found freedom, and it creates a confirmation bias in the minds of loyal JWs ("wow the GB is right, all ex witnesses ARE mentally diseased), and this can happen even here, with heated debates, etc. It's so, so important, not just for our community health, ourselves, but for OTHERS, that we be so careful, whilst sharing our personal views, interpretations, not to be aggressive with one another, but peaceful as possible in our deliberations. Lest we upset or push back anyone who may be thinking about escaping whatever group (be it JW, anything) they may be part of in search for Christian freedom. Our behaviour and presentation, can put millstones on our necks if we are not wary, but I digress).


This is a human social phenomena. It's why "hippies" of the 60s were often drug addicts, pot heads, rebels, etc, but at the same time... probably made some good points (anti pollution, anti-war, anti racism, etc), but to society, their conduct branded them as trouble makers against society (and some were!). It's irony really.

Satan uses military like social conformity and peace as his tools to deceive, as anyone speaking truth against the mainstream would either be branded a heretic or outcast, so as it is with Christian dogma and tradition.


That's why they say "Jesus was hated because he spoke the truth". Of course, he was not a rebellious person at all. And I'd like to think most of us here aren't either, we just have a passion for truth, and the bravery to look for it. But on some level, I think we all must be "individual thinkers", to go against the grain of mainstream tradition, and especially so against cult-control tactics.
"The fruitage of the Spirit is; love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control..." Galatians 5:22-23

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