The Trinity is Biblical
Debate Rounds (5)
Isa 44:24 tells us that Yahweh made all things, streached out the heavens alone, spread out the earth by himself; yet Scripture reveals the Father as creator (Isa 64:8), and the Son (Col 1:16-17; Heb 1:2, 8-10), and the Holy Spirit (Ps 104:30; Job 26:13; 33:4) Combine this with the plural pronouns "us" and "our" in Genesis 1:16 and the trinitarian has an airtight case. If Jesus and the Holy Spirit are not one God with the Father, then God the Father had help and did not create all things alone, by himself, as he said in Isaiah 44:24. If the trinity is true, harmony comes to the texts.
At Isaiah 43:11 Yahweh declares, "I myself am Yahweh and besides me there is no Saviour." (WEB) Scripture tells us palinly that Jesus is the Saviour. (Matt 1:21; Lu 2:11; Acts 4:12; 2 Tim 1:10; Tit 1:4; 2 Pet 1:11, etc) So is Jesus Yahweh himself, or is he another Saviour besides Yahweh? Which is it? If he is Yahweh, then he must be one Yahweh with the Father. For there is only one Yahweh. (Deu 6:4) If he is not Yahweh, then he is another saviour besides Yahweh, and Yahweh was lying when he claimed to be the only Saviour. Which is it? Acts 4:12 says of Jesus, that "there is no salvation in anyone else." Now, if Jesus is not God, then there can be no salvation in God, for there is no salvation in anyone else but Jesus.
The fact that Jesus receives prayer proves he is God. John 14:14 says in the New American Standard Bible: "If you ask Me anything in My name, I will do it." Not only does Jesus encourage believers to pray to Him by saying, "ask Me anything," but He is the One who answers the prayer when He promises, "I will do it." While this Scripture is a strong support of prayer being rendered to Jesus, it is complicated by the fact that some translations omits the "me" in the phrase "ask Me anything" in John 14:14. But the Greek text itself states: "If ever anything you should ask me in the name of me this I shall do."
The reason that certain Bible versions leave out the "me" is due to a textual variant in the manuscripts of the Greek text of this verse. The Majority text (most dating from around the 9th century) split on this issue with some containing the "me" and others dropping the "me." But in recent years, scholars have uncovered manuscripts of the New Testament that date as far back as the second and third centuries. The oldest manuscripts we have available today of this verse in the Gospel of John are Papyrus 66, written in 125 A.D., and Papyrus 75, written sometime between 175-225 A.D. Both of these papyrus fragments contain the "me" in this passage. Not only do the oldest fragments of John that we possess today contain the "me," but two of the oldest ancient complete copies of the entire Bible in Greek, the Codex Sinaiticus and Codex Vaticanus written around the 4th century, both agree with the papyrus' renderings of "ask me" in John 14:14.
Since Desiderius Erasmus complied and published the Greek text (Textus Receptus) of the King James Bible version in the 1500's, he did not have access to the older Greek manuscripts that we have today. Thus, the King James Bible version and other Bible versions based upon the Textus Receptus or the Majority text do not contain the "me" in John 14:14. Indeed, John 14:14 is a strong testimony to Jesus' approval of the early Christian practice of directing their prayers to Jesus Christ. Does not prayer only belong to God?
2 Corinthians 12:8-9 "In this behalf I three times entreated the Lord that it might depart from me; and yet he really said to me: "My undeserved kindness is sufficient for you; for [my] power is being made perfect in weakness.' Most gladly, therefore, will I rather boast as respects my weaknesses, that the power of the Christ may like a tent remain over me." Here Paul prayed to the "Lord" Jesus three times and Jesus answered his prayer by saying: "My... power is being make perfect in weakness." Paul concluded by admitting that he would "rather boast ...that the power of (who?) the Christ may like a tent remain over me." So, here again, we see an example of a Christian in the Bible praying to the Lord Jesus with Jesus responding to the prayer with His "underserved kindness" and "power." (NWT) We are told about Jesus hearing our prayers again in 1 John 5:12-16 and Acts 7:59. This would not be so if Jesus were not God.
I must at this point mention the Granville Sharp rule of Greek grammar. This rule states that when there are 2 nouns that are both singular which describe a person, and these nouns are connected by the word "and," the first noun having the article, the second noun not having the article then they refer to the SAME PERSON. (*Note that the nouns cannot be personal names*) There is absolutely no exception to this rule in all of the Greek New Testament. Having stated this rule I find it necessary to present two verses of scripture that unequivocally qualify Jesus as both God and Savior.
Titus 2:13 - while we wait for the blessed hope"the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, (NIV)
2Peter 1:1 - Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours: (NIV)
Notice in both verses the noun "God" (theou) has the article (tou) and is connected to the second noun "Savior" (soteros) which does not have an article, by the word "and" (kai). Thus "God and Savior" both refer to the Person of Jesus. Grammatically this is irrefutable. So not only is Jesus Savior, He is God! So I think I have made a good case that Jesus is definitely God, and since there is only one God, then the Father and the Son must be one God. Now, onto the Holy Spirit.
That the Holy Spirt is God and Lord is clearly stated in the Scriptures. (Acts 5:3-4; 2 Cor 3:17) The Holy Spirit has the same attributes of diety as the Father and the Son:
The Father is eternal (Ps 90:2), and the Son (Isa 9:6; Mic 5:2), and the Holy Spirit (Heb 9:14)
The Father is omniscient (1 John 3:20), and the Son (John 16:30; 21:17), and the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 2:10-11)
The Father is omnipresent (1 Kings 8:27; Ps 137:8-18), and the Son (Matt 18:20), and the Holy Spirit. (Ps 137:7)
The Father is omnipotent (Dan 4:35), and the Son (Matt 28:18; John 17:10), and the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 40:12-15)
Strong evidence of the Trinity. I look forward to my opponents response.
First of all, yes, there is only one almighty God that I worship. But Pro claims "The scriptures proclaim that there is one, and only one God". Let's see what the Bible REALLY teaches.
Satan is a god:
2 Corinthians 4:4 - among whom the god of this system of things has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, so that the illumination of the glorious good news about the Christ, who is the image of God, might not shine through.
Even people can be gods:
John 10:34 - Jesus answered them: Is it not written in your Law, I said: You are gods?
A god is simply someone powerful. But only Jehovah is ever called God Almighty." (Genesis 17:1).
Now, about John 20:28, there is no objection to referring to Jesus as God, if this is what Thomas had in mind. That would be in harmony with Jesus own quotation from the Psalms in which powerful men, judges, were addressed as gods." Considering the context helps us come to the right conclusion. Before Jesus' death, Thomas heard Jesus' prayer in which he addressed his Father as the only true God." (John 17:3). After his resurrection, Jesus sent a message to his apostles, including Thomas, in which he had said: I am ascending to my God and your God" (John 20:17).
At Isaiah 43:10 Jehovah says: Before me no god was formed, nor shall there be any after me" Because Jesus is called "Mighty God" in Isaiah 9:6 does that mean he is Jehovah? Again, the context says NO! None of the idolatrous Gentile nations formed a god before Jehovah, because none existed before Jehovah. Nor would they form any real live God in the future. But that does not mean that Jehovah never caused to exist anyone who is properly referred to as a god. Again, Jesus may be referred to as Mighty God, just like Jehovah. But only Jehovah is ever referred to as God Almighty.
Jehovah made all things himself, correct. Rather than a co-creator or helper, Jesus was the agent or instrumentality through whom Jehovah, the Creator, worked. The power of creation came from God through his holy spirit, or active force. Jesus himself credited God with the creation, as do all the Scriptures (Matthew 19:4-6).
A savior is one who preserves or delivers from danger or destruction. Jehovah is identified as the principal Savior, and the only source of deliverance (Isaiah 43:1; 45:21). The name Jesus, given to God's Son by angelic direction, means Jehovah Is Salvation," for, said the angel, he will save his people from their sins. (Matthew 1:21 and Luke 1:31). This name points out that Jehovah is the Source of salvation, accomplished through Jesus. For this reason we find the Father and the Son spoken of together in connection with salvation.
Now, about John 14:14, Jesus clearly promised his disciples: If you ask anything in my name, I will do it." Does this require praying to him? No. The asking is addressed to Jehovah God, but in Jesus' name. What exactly from 2 Corinthians suggests Paul was praying to Jesus? The "undeserved kindness" and "power" Paul received is from Jehovah. 1 John 5:12-16 doesn't even mention Jesus at all.
Concerning Acts 7:50, "Barnes" Notes on the New Testament makes this honest admission: 'The word God is not in the original, and should not have been in the translation. It is in none of the ancient [manuscripts] or versions.' How did the word 'God' come to be inserted into that verse? Scholar Abiel Abbot Livermore called this 'an instance of the sectarian biases of the translators.' Most modern translations, therefore, eliminate this spurious reference to God. Nevertheless, many versions do say that Stephen 'prayed' to Jesus. And the footnote in the New World Translation shows that the term 'made appeal' can also mean 'invocation; prayer.' Would that not indicate that Jesus is Almighty God? No. Vine"s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words explains that in this setting, the original Greek word, e"pi"ka"leR42;o, means: 'To call upon, invoke; . . . to appeal to an authority.' Paul used this same word when he declared: 'I appeal to Caesar!' (Acts 25:11) Appropriately, then, The New English Bible says that Stephen 'called out' to Jesus. What prompted Stephen to make such an appeal? According to Acts 7:55, 56, Stephen, 'being full of holy spirit, gazed into heaven and caught sight of God"s glory and of Jesus standing at God"s right hand.' Normally, Stephen would have addressed his requests to Jehovah in the name of Jesus. But seeing the resurrected Jesus in vision, Stephen apparently felt free to appeal to him directly, saying: 'Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.' Stephen knew that Jesus had been given authority to raise the dead. (John 5:27-29) He therefore asked Jesus to safeguard his spirit, or life force, until the day when Jesus would raise him to immortal life in the heavens." http://wol.jw.org...
About the Greek grammar argument, that was unnecessary, really. I understand Jesus is a great God and that Jehovah saves through him. But he is not the God almighty that I worship.
In the Bible, God"s holy spirit is identified as God"s power in action. If the Father is eternal, obviously his power will be eternal as well. Is Jesus eternal? Colossians 1:15 says: "He (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation". And Revelation 3:14 says: "These are the things that the Amen (Jesus) says, (...) the beginning of the creation by God".
"The title 'Eternal Father' refers to the Messianic King"s power and authority to give humans the prospect of eternal life on earth. (John 11:25, 26) The legacy of our first parent, Adam, was death. Jesus, the last Adam, 'became a life-giving spirit.' (1 Corinthians 15:22, 45; Romans 5:12, 18) Just as Jesus, the Eternal Father, will live forever, so obedient mankind will enjoy the benefits of his fatherhood eternally."Romans 6:9." http://wol.jw.org...
Yes, God reveals everything through his holy spirit because he is omniscient. The son, on the other hand, isn't. That is very clear in Matthew 24:36 and Mark 13:32 where it says that not even the Son knows the day or the hour. ONLY the Father knows. So the holy spirit is not included IF it was a separate person.
"Wise King Solomon made this request to Jehovah in prayer: 'May you yourself hear from the heavens, your established place of dwelling.' (1 Kings 8:30, 39) The fact that Jehovah has a place of dwelling indicates that he is not in all places at all times. How, then, can he be aware of what is happening? (2 Chronicles 6:39) The psalmist wrote: 'Where can I go from your spirit, and where can I run away from your face? If I should ascend to heaven, there you would be; and if I should spread out my couch in Sheol, look! you would be there.'"Psalm 139:7-10. To understand the pervasive effect of God"s holy spirit, picture the sun. It is at a specific location but distributes energy to a vast portion of the earth. God also has under his control an organization of spirit creatures called angels. The Bible indicates that those spirits may number into the hundreds of millions"perhaps billions or more. (Daniel 7:10) The Bible therefore indicates that there is no need for Jehovah God literally to be everywhere. Through the operation of his holy spirit and through his angelic forces, he is able to be fully aware of what is happening with regard to his creation." http://wol.jw.org...
Jehovah is omnipotent, yes. The holy spirit is his power in action. On the other hand, Jesus himself said: "Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself" (John 5:19), so he is not omnipotent.
I eagerly await for more "proof" of the trinity that is never once mentioned in the scriptures.
I don"t see how Con aligns John 20:28 with Psalm 82 because no one in Israel went around calling any of the judges "my God." This is a term that is EXCLUSIVELY used for Jehovah all through the rest of the entire Bible, so the fact that Thomas applies it to Jesus proves his divinity beyond doubt. Further, Thomas doesn"t just call him God, but "my" God, showing that Jesus is HIS God. The Greek text say "kai ho theos mou," literally, "and THE God OF me." So Jesus is THE God, with the definite article, "of" Thomas. How much more clearly could Thomas have shown Jesus was God?
John 17:3 doesn"t help you, because the Father being the ONLY true God, means all other gods are false. Jesus therefore cannot be ANOTHER god as you teach, or else he would be a false god. So Jesus has to be the same God as the Father. Not the same person, but included as part of the same being.
Amazing you should bring up John 20:17. I have no problem with Jesus, as a man, calling the Father "my God," because as a human a setting the example for us, he gave up heaven to take on the role of a servant. But since "my God" proves the Father is God in John 20:17, then to be consistent "my God" must show Jesus is God in John 20:28! And if "my God" means the Father is the God of Jesus (in his humanity), then "my God" means Jesus is the God of Thomas when the term is applied to him.
1 Corinthians 8:4 says "there is none other God but one." That is very clear. We should interpret the obscure passages like Psalm 82 in light of the clearer ones like Isaiah 45:5: "There is no God beside me." Con wants us to reinterpret the many, many passages we have saying there is only one God to allow for other gods, on the basis of a handful of obscure passages. This is bad exegesis.
Con admits Jehovah made all things himself, then adds that Jesus helped him, but Isaiah 44:24 is more forceful than that, using the words "ALONE" and "BY MYSELF" to show that Jehovah had no help. So either Jesus is Jehovah, or Jehovah had help which makes him a liar in this verse. Con simply doesn"t see that Jehovah doesn"t just claim to be the source of salvation, but actually claims to be the ONLY Savior there is. "I am the Lord; and beside me there is no Savior." Con believes Jesus is ANOTHER savior, hence he has two saviors, when Scripture teaches there is only one.
With John 14:14 Con ignored completely my point that the Greek text actually says: "If ever anything you should ASK ME in the name of me this I will do." Jesus is saying that we should ask HIM, and this Greek is found even in the Kingdom Interlinear Greek text used by Jehovah"s Witnesses. Their NWT is based on this Greek text, but they leave out the "ASK ME" because they want to hide the fact that Jesus asked us to pray to him. Con actually says 1 John 5:12-15 doesn"t mention Jesus! I"ll give you the text from his own NWT: "He that has the Son (JESUS) has this life; he that does not have the Son of God (JESUS) does not have this life. I write you these things that you may know that you have life everlasting, you who put your faith in the name of the Son of God. (JESUS) And this is the confidence that we have toward him (JESUS), that, no matter what it is that we ask according to his will, he hears us." The Son of God is clearly the one mentioned in all the previous verses, leading up to the one "who hears us."
Con claims the Holy Spirit is "God"s power in action," but the Bible explicitly shows the Holy Spirit is NOT power: "Not by might, NOR BY POWER, but by my Spirit." (Zech 4:6) I challenge Con to show me the verse that says the Holy Spirit is power; I"ve already shown him where the Spirit is contrasted to power.
Con vainly cites Colossians 1:15 which calls Jesus "the image of the invisible God," so Jesus is the invisible, made visible. If God becomes visible, we would see Jesus; wow! The word firstborn in no way proves Jesus was the first to be created as Con thinks. King David was also called the "firstborn," even though he was the seventh son of Jesse. (Psalm 89:20, 27; 1 Ch 2:13-15) He was the firstborn in the sense of his preeminence, which is the same meaning in Colossians 1:15 as shown by the context which says: "For BY HIM were ALL THINGS created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And HE IS BEFORE ALL THINGS, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the PREEMMINENCE." (Col 1:16-18, KVJ) Jesus is BEFORE all things, hence was not created. He created all things. John 1:3 says that without him already being there, God the Father did not created "even one thing." So the Son was always with the Father before creation even began.
Revelation 1:8 calls God "the beginning," meaning that Jehovah is the source or origin, or Beginner of all creation. Since he that sees Jesus sees the Father (John 14:9), we should expect Jesus to be called "the beginning" too. (Rev 3:14) Since Con trusted Barnes Notes regarding Acts 7:59, let him see that this same trusted source and many others support what I said on Colossians 1:15 and Revelation 3:14 http://www.google.com...
The eternal Father is so called because he is eternal. Con"s explanation may be an additional reason. Funny now Con should use Mark 13:32 to show Jesus doesn"t know something as proof he can"t be God, when Jehovah"s Witnesses themselves claim that Jehovah didn"t know Adam and Eve would eat the fruit (Reasoning from the Scriptures, Fate), or that Abraham would sacrifice his son, or what was happening in Sodom. "Selective foreknowledge means that God could choose not to foreknow indiscriminately all the future acts of his creatures." (Insight on the Scriptures, vol.1, Foreknowledge) They claim Jehovah can selectively use his foreknowledge, so what is the problem now with his Son doing the same at Mark 13:32? Jesus though, in his human knowledge didn"t know the hour, but in his divine self he knew ALL THING, as his disciples proclaimed he did. (John 16:30; 21:17) I"ll take their interpretation over Con"s.
I will address Acts 7:59 in the next round, as well as Con's other arguments. I'm out of space for now, but clearly Con has not yet refuted my position.
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Vote Placed by lannan13 2 years ago
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