The Instigator
Truth_seeker
Pro (for)
Winning
16 Points
The Contender
RainbowDash52
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The Trinity is biblical

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Truth_seeker
Voting Style: Judge Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/1/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 554 times Debate No: 61151
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (3)

 

Truth_seeker

Pro

I will give evidence for the Trinity (no personal interpretation) just various sources

Non believers can debate on some conditions :

1) stay on topic - no going to the existence of God
2) no bashing - It's not relevant to the debate
3) you must support your reasoning from the Bible and/or evidence

2 and 3 can also apply to believers. Failure to comply will result in the loss of conduct points.

First round acceptance
RainbowDash52

Con

I accept.
Debate Round No. 1
Truth_seeker

Pro

Gen. 1:26-27 "And God said: 'Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.' 27 And God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them."

The Hebrew "Elohim" is plural based on the plural verb "asah" prefixed by the nun (1). This is also observed with pagan gods (2). Based on the Ugaritic texts, this is further proven (3). The Hebrew word for "revealed" is plural in Gen. 35:14 (4). Other plural references are found (5).

More plural references to God include:

Psalm 149:2 "Let Israel be glad in his Maker; let the children of Zion rejoice in their King!"

A commentator noted this:

"Literally the Hebrew here brings forward the mystic doctrine of the Trinity, for it reads, "Let Israel rejoice in God his Makers." --Simon de Muis (6)

Job 35:10 also has the plural "makers" (7)

Isaiah 54:5

"For your Creator will be your husband; the LORD of Heaven's Armies is his name! He is your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, the God of all the earth."

Isaiah 51:22

" Thus says your Lord,
The Lord and your God,
Who pleads the cause of His people:
"See, I have taken out of your hand
The cup of trembling,
The dregs of the cup of My fury;
You shall no longer drink it."

These passages in Hebrew literally have the plural "Makers" (8).

Young's literal translation which is a literal translation of the Hebrew reads

"Remember also thy Creators in days of thy youth, While that the evil days come not, Nor the years have arrived, that thou sayest, `I have no pleasure in them.' (9).

The word "Echad" in Hebrew is a compound unity (Gen 2:24, Gen 11:6; 34:16, 22, 2 Chron 30:12; Jer 32:39, Ezek. 37:17, Ezra. 2:64.) The Hebrew "Yachid" is never used of God's oneness.

Gen. 3:22 "Then the LORD God said, "Look, the human beings have become like us [Echad], knowing both good and evil. What if they reach out, take fruit from the tree of life, and eat it? Then they will live forever!"

Genesis 11:7 "Come, let Us go down there and confuse their language so that they will not understand one another's speech."

The Hebrew word for go down is yarad, but the nun prefix identifies it as plural (10).

Deut. 6:4 "Listen, Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is One [Echad]."

Some propose that the plural of majesty is just as reliable in Scripture, however that is not what scholars say:

"Every one who is acquainted with the rudiments of the Hebrew and Chaldee languages, must know that God, in the holy Writings, very often spoke of Himself in the plural. The passages are numerous, in which, instead of a grammatical agreement between the subject and predicate, we meet with a construction, which some modern grammarians, who possess more of the so-called philosophical than of the real knowledge of the Oriental languages, call a pluralis excellentiae. This helps them out of every apparent difficulty. Such a pluralis excellentiae was, however, a thing unknown to Moses and the prophets. Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar, David, and all the other kings, throughout TeNaKh (the Law, the Prophets, and the Hagiographa) speak in the singular, and not as modern kings in the plural. They do not say we, but I, command; as in Gen. xli. 41; Dan. iii. 29; Ezra i. 2, etc." (11)

"This first person plural can hardly be a mere editorial or royal plural that refers to the speaker alone, for no such usage is demonstrable anywhere else in biblical Hebrew. Therefore, we must face the question of who are included in this "us" and "our." It could hardly include the angels in consultation with God, for nowhere is it ever stated that man was created in the image of angels, only of God. Verse 27 then affirms: "and God [Elohim] created man in His own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female He created them" (NASB). God--the same God who spoke of Himself in the plural--now states that He created man in His image. In other words, the plural equals the singular. This can only be understood in terms of the Trinitarian nature of God. The one true God subsists in three Persons, Persons who are able to confer with one another and carry their plans into action together--without ceasing to be one God." (12)

"The best answer that they [Old Hebrew lexicographers and grammarians] could give was that the plural form used for the name (or title) of God was the 'pluralis majestatis,' that is the plural of majesty...to say nothing of the fact that it is not at all certain that the 'pluralis majestatis' is ever found in the Old Testament, there is an explanation much nearer at hand and much simpler, and that is, that a plural name was used for the one God, in spite of the intense monotheism of the Jews, because there is a plurality of person in the one Godhead." (13)

Another very popular view in modem times is that God uses the plural, just as kings do, as a mark of dignity (the so-called "plural of majesty"), but it is only late in Jewish history that such a form of speech occurs, and then it is used by Persian and Greek rulers (Esdr. iv. 18; 1 Mace. x. 19). Nor can the plural be regarded as merely indicating the way in which God summons Himself to energy, for the use of the language is against this (Gen. ii. 18; Is. xxxiii. 10)." (14)

Judaism:

Some say that the son of God is a Christian insertion, however in the DSS fragment 4Q246, it reads:

"He shall be called the Son of the God; they will call him the Son of the Most High...He will judge the earth in righteousness...and every nation will bow down to him...with (God's) help he will make war, and...[God] will give all the peoples into his power."

Rabbinical Judaism has been admitted to have re-interpreted the plural reference to Elohim as singular (15).

"Hear, 0 Israel, Adonai Eloheinu Adonai is one. These three are one. How can the three Names be one? Only through the perception of faith: in the vision of the Holy Spirit, in the beholding of the hidden eye alone! The mystery of the audible voice is similar to this, for though it is one yet it consists of three elements-fire, air and water, which have, however, become one in the mystery of the voice. Even so it is with the mystery of the threefold Divine manifestations designated by Adonai Eloheinu Adonai - three modes which yet form one unity. This is the significance of the voice which man produces in the act of unification, when his intent is to unify all, from the Infinite (Ein Sof) to the end of creation. This is the daily unification, the secret of which has been revealed in the holy spirit." (16).

The targums are aramaic translations and interpretations in the synagogues of how the Scriptures were originally to be understood. This is from Targum Neofiti

"In the beginning, with wisdom, the Son of YHWH created the heavens and the earth" (17)

Finally, in the LXX (one of the oldest O.T manuscripts) has this reading in which Jesus applies to himself:

Psalm 110:3

" With thee is dominion in the day of thy power, in the splendours of thy saints: I have begotten thee from the womb before the morning."

Conclusion:

The doctrine of the Trinity is completely biblical.

Sources:

1. Glinert Modern Hebrew: An Essential Grammar Routledge p14 section 13 "(b)Agreement of verbs Verbs agree with their subject, and not only in gender and number but also in person. Present tense verbs distinguish masculine from feminine and singular from plural:"

2. http://books.google.com... id=NkP4QlnlEmYC

3. K. van der Toorn, Bob Becking, Pieter Willem van der Horst (eds), Dictionary of deities and demons in the Bible (revised 2nd edition, Brill, 1999) ISBN 90-04-11119-0, p. 274, 352-3

4. NET Bible with Companion CD-ROM W. Hall Harris, 3rd, none - 2003 - "35:14 So Jacob set up a sacred stone pillar in the place where God spoke with him.30 He poured out a 20tn Heb "revealed themselves." The verb iVl] (niglu), translated "revealed himself," is plural, even though one expects the singular"

5. Haggai and Malachi p36 Herbert Wolf - 1976 If both the noun and the verb are plural, the construction can refer to a person, just as the statement "God revealed Himself" in Genesis 35:7 has a plural noun and verb. But since the word God, "Elohim," is plural in form,8 the verb ..."

6. http://www.spurgeon.org...

7. http://www.studylight.org...

8. http://books.google.com...

9. http://www.biblestudytools.com...

10. http://biblehub.com...

11. Rabbi Tzvi Nassi, Oxford University professor, The Great Mystery, 1970, p6

12. Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties, Gleason Archer, p.359, commenting on whether Gen 1:26 is a "plural of majesty"

13. The God of the Bible, R. A.Torrey, 1923, p 64

14. Trinity, A Catholic Dictionary, William E. Addis & Thomas Arnold, 1960, p 822-830

15. http://books.google.com.au...

16. Zohar (III, 43b)

17. Shepherd, Michael B. "Targums, the New Testament, and Biblical Theology of the Messiah." JETS. 51:1 (2008), 45-58
RainbowDash52

Con

The reason that God is referred to as plural in the bible is because the bible is polytheistic in origin [1] not because it is referring to the trinity. My opponent"s entire argument was that since God is referred to as plural, then that refers to the trinity, but as I have explained, it does not. My opponent must give an example of the trinity being mentioned in the bible, not just polytheism in the bible.

[1] http://www.debate.org...
Debate Round No. 2
Truth_seeker

Pro

First Con does not present evidence for Elohim being polytheistic in origin, but cites an old debate. I begin by saying that while yes common elements do exist in other myths, originality is linked to a unique combination of those elements:

"Finally, Genesis shows God creating simply through his spoken word, not through magical utterance as is attested in Egypt. There thus runs through the whole Genesis cosmology "a conscious and deliberate anti-mythical polemic" (Heidel, Babylonian Genesis, 91). The author of Gen 1 therefore shows that he was aware of other cosmologies, and that he wrote not in dependence on them so much as in deliberate rejection of them" (1)

I will now compare the Bible to other myths:

Regarding the Genesis creation story, scholars note that no evidence exists to show Elohim is plural because it was borrowed from pagan myths:

"The common view that the Hebrew account is simply a purged and simplified version of the Babylonian legend (applied also to the flood stories) is fallacious on methodological grounds. In the Ancient Near East the rule is that simple accounts or traditions may give rise (by accretion and embellishment) to elaborate legends, but not vice versa." (2)

Scholars have rejected the notion that Genesis was copied from other myths (3). There is no evidence of direct borrowing (4). There is no correlation between Genesis and other myths (5).

Therefore, the Hebrew concept of God is far different from the pagan concept of their gods.

Sources:

1. Wenham, Gordon. Genesis 1"15, Word Biblical Commentary. Waco, TX: Word, 1987. 6.

2. Kitchen, Kenneth Anderson. Ancient Orient and Old Testament. London: Tyndale, 1966. 89.

3. "Thus most Assyriologists have long since rejected the idea of any direct link between Gen. 1-11 and Enuma Elish, and nothing else better can be found between Gen. 1-11 and any other Mesopotamian fragments.", Kitchen, "On the Reliability of the Old Testament", p. 424 (2003); his footnote reads "Assyriologists generally reject any genetic relationship between Gen. 1-2 and the Mesopotamian data because of the considerable differences; see (eg.) J.V. Kinnier-Wilson. In D. W. Thomas, ed., Documents from Old Testament Times (London: Nelson, 1958), 14; W. G. Lambert, JTS. n.s., 16 (1965): 287-300, esp. 289. 291, 293-99. and in ISF, 96-113, with addenda; A. R. Millard, TynB 18 (1967): 3-4.7. 16-18, and in ISIF 114-28; T. Jacobsen, in JBL 100 (198 1): 513-29, and translation, both now in ISIF 129-42, plus 160-66.", ibid., p. 591.

4. "However, it has yet to be shown that there was borrowing, even indirectly. Differences between the Babylonian and the Hebrew traditions can be found in factual details of the Flood narrative (form of the Ark; duration of the Flood, the identity of the birds and their dispatch) and are most obvious in the ethical and religious concepts of the whole of each composition. All who suspect or suggest borrowing by the Hebrews are compelled to admit large-scale revision, alteration, and reinterpretation in a fashion that cannot be substantiated for any other composition from the ancient Near East or in any other Hebrew writing. If there was borrowing then it can have extended only as far as the "historical" framework, and not included intention or interpretation.", Millard, "A New Babylonian "Genesis" Story", in Hess & Tsumura (eds.), "I Studied Inscriptions from Before the Flood: Ancient Near Eastern, Literary Approaches to Genesis 1-11", Sources for Biblical and Theological Study, volume 4, p. 127 (1994).

5. The details are not exact and most scholars deny any direct literary dependence but it would seem that both stories emerge from a common tradition or milieu.", Moyise, "Introduction to Biblical Studies", p. 33 (2004).
RainbowDash52

Con

My opponent states "First Con does not present evidence for Elohim being polytheistic in origin, but cites an old debate"
even though my opponent previously stated in round 2, "The Hebrew "Elohim" is plural based on the plural verb "asah" prefixed by the nun (1). This is also observed with pagan gods (2). "

"Hebrew Elohim in English translations of the Bible is generally rendered as gods when occurring with a plural verb or referring to pagan deities, and as God when occurring with a singular verb or referring to the God of Israel." [1]

And yes the bible did originate from polytheism as most people who reads the debate I sited would understand.

Again my opponent has failed to demonstrate the bible mentioning the trinity.

[1] http://lmgtfy.com...
Debate Round No. 3
Truth_seeker

Pro

1) Con's source leads us absolutely no where. All i see are several sites on the Google search engine.

Con commits the fallacy of repetition (1). While Con tells us that there are similarities, experts tells us that those similarities do not imply that Elohim is pagan in origin or that the Hebrews borrowed everything from other myths. Con gives specifically no linguistic proof by any source demonstrating that Elohim was originally a pagan concept. I've already cited scholars who pointed out there is no relation between Hebrew theology and other myths.

More evidence the Trinity is supported:

During Jesus baptism (Matthew 3:16-17 16), Psalm 2 is quoted and according to the NIV study Bible, the Greek tense of the verb "beloved" is unaffected by time. Therefore, it implies that Jesus is eternal.

This is also the very 1st time we see the father, the son, and holy ghost work as one. In the O.T, kings were anointed by oil but Jesus was anointed by the Holy Spirit (Isa. 61:1).

Matthew 22:41-46

"41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, 42 saying, "What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He?"

They said to Him, "The Son of David."

43 He said to them, "How then does David in the Spirit call Him "Lord," saying:

44 "The Lord said to my Lord,
"Sit at My right hand,
Till I make Your enemies Your footstool""?

45 If David then calls Him "Lord," how is He his Son?" 46 And no one was able to answer Him a word, nor from that day on did anyone dare question Him anymore."

This is clearly an indication that Jesus is an eternal being as distinct from the father.

Luke 10:13-15

13 "Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. 14 But it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon at the judgment than for you. 15 And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to Hades." 16 He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me."

Another example of the relationship between the father and the son.

John 1:1

"1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with [pros] God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men."

Pros in Greek was a term meaning "to or towards (2). This implies that Jesus was a separate and eternal being distinct from God the father while being God at once.

John 1:14 "14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten [monogenes] of the Father, full of grace and truth."

"Monogenes" means "one and only" (3).

Sources:

1. http://www.logicallyfallacious.com....

2. http://biblehub.com...

3. http://biblehub.com...
RainbowDash52

Con

My link shows what I quoted on my computer. Maybe it doesn"t show on mobile devices or something, but anyways, this shows the same thing: [2]

"During Jesus baptism (Matthew 3:16-17 16), Psalm 2 is quoted and according to the NIV study Bible, the Greek tense of the verb "beloved" is unaffected by time. Therefore, it implies that Jesus is eternal."

That does not even mention the word "beloved" as my opponent states.

""1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with [pros] God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men."

Pros in Greek was a term meaning "to or towards (2). This implies that Jesus was a separate and eternal being distinct from God the father while being God at once."
How does that possibly imply anything about Jesus when it doesn"t mention Jesus.

My opponent keeps making the argument the father and son are distinct entities. That conclusion does not at all imply the trinity. You have to give evidence that Jesus, the father, and the Holy Spirit are all a god and that they are all the same god for it to support the trinity. Of course Jesus and the father are separate entities; that is agreed upon. But the bible doesn"t support the trinity unless you can show that Jesus and the Holy Spirit are also God.

There is disagreement whether monogenes means one and only God. [1]

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...
Debate Round No. 4
Truth_seeker

Pro

"My link shows what I quoted on my computer. Maybe it doesn"t show on mobile devices or something, but anyways, this shows the same thing"

Con was not specific at all in his/her claim. Con cites wikipedia, but give absolutely no argument to support his/her position.

The Greek word "agapētos" is the word for beloved (1).

"How does that possibly imply anything about Jesus when it doesn"t mention Jesus."

The identity of Jesus is found in the passage as i will demonstrate:

John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God"

John 1:14 "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."

John 1:17 "For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ."

This proves that Jesus is God.

God's spirit is God himself as it can do things that only God can such create (Gen. 1:2). His spirit is also equated with God's presence (Ps. 139:7"8).

Once again, Con does not present an argument for monogenes having alternative interpretations.

Jewish views also have the Messiah as God's first born (2).

Conclusion:

There is tons of evidence for the Trinity that Con has failed to refute. Linguistically, the text points to only three persons as one being.

Sources:

1. http://www.blueletterbible.org...

2. Midrash Rabbah Shemot 19
RainbowDash52

Con

My opponent used these quotes in attempt to prove that Jesus was God:
John 1:1 "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God"

John 1:14 "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."

My opponent is basically arguing that since the word is God and that the word is Jesus, then that means Jesus is God. But since my opponent is arguing for the trinity, he can"t rely on the transitive property. The trinity states that the son is God, the father is God, but the son is not the father (violating the transitive property). If this is logically possible then it is also possible that the word is Jesus, and the word is God, but Jesus is not God. Thus my opponent has not proven that Jesus is God, unless he relies on the transitive property which contradicts the claim he is arguing for.

Since Jesus being God is required for the trinity to be true, and since my opponent failed to prove that the Bible states Jesus is God, my opponent failed to prove that the trinity is biblical.
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Truth_seeker 2 years ago
Truth_seeker
i should have used those verses lol
Posted by a_drumming_dog 2 years ago
a_drumming_dog
Good luck Truth_seeker!!
Posted by cheyennebodie 2 years ago
cheyennebodie
The Father, the son and the Holy Spirit. That mirrors man. We are spirit, soul and body.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Blade-of-Truth 2 years ago
Blade-of-Truth
Truth_seekerRainbowDash52Tied
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Sources - Pro. Con quoting his own debates and other sources just weren't as strong nor as respectable as Pro's. Arguments - Pro. Con was unable to overcome the rebuttals presented by Pro when faced with his counter-arguments. Pro was able to show through the scripture God and Jesus were the same. Con was only able to poke doubt into these arguments and rarely backed them up by sources. Con was not able to stop Pro from maintaining his BOP. For this, Pro is awarded these points.
Vote Placed by Jellon 2 years ago
Jellon
Truth_seekerRainbowDash52Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro did a good job of showing from Hebrew and Greek context that the text not only promotes a unity with in the references to G-d, but identified the individuals part of that unity. Con attempted to question that interpretation, but didn't provide any sources in support of their arguments. Pro failed to use either Isaiah 9 or the various gospel accounts where the Jewish people accused Yeshua Jesus of equating Himself with G-d. Like the time in John where they were going to some Him for claiming, "I and the Father are one". Our again when He said, "Before Abraham was YHWH (I AM)". They didn't like that one too much either.
Vote Placed by whiteflame 2 years ago
whiteflame
Truth_seekerRainbowDash52Tied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Before I get into arguments, the conduct and source points come from Con quoting his own debate in R2 and the strange link in R3. Quoting your own debate is the bigger problem, and would warrant both of these point allocations by itself. As for arguments, I just didn't see any case out of Con. Con spent every round simply inserting a low level of doubt and uncertainty into Pro's case, which is insufficient, even though Pro carries the BoP. Pro gives me sufficient reason to believe that the Trinity is the most likely explanation for the Biblical evidence he quotes. Con's arguments, while they hold merit, get too little in the way of support to be considered as sufficiently likely alternative explanations. Hence, I vote Pro.