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Thread: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

  1. #46
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by PneumaPsucheSoma View Post
    This was a spin-off of another thread about leaving a particular church over certain teachings, including Trinity. Some asked why I commented that I wouldn't leave over Trinity.

    This is a HUGE issue for most who hold either belief. I'm puzzled that you can't distinguish between these. I risk potential disfellowship from the board by even broaching the subject beyond certain boundaries; and I'm not even advocating Oneness.

    For me, it comes doen to if someone professes Jesus has come in the flesh according to 1 John 4.
    PSS,

    Historically, like it or not, the Church has rejected modalism, which is essentially what Oneness theology holds to. It started with the first council which met at Nicea, which specifically referred to such teachings as unChristian, and this position was uniformly upheld in subsequent councils.

    If I understand Oneness theology correctly, they say that God revealed himself as Father in the OT, as the Son through Jesus during His ministry on earth, and now as the Holy Spirit after Christ ascended.

    Now the reason for such a seeming overreaction is because in a sense Oneness does not hold to the deity of the Son of God exactly but only to the deity of God, since there is only one Person, and they are all the same, just different manifestations. Of course they do not deny the deity of Christ, though they view Him as the same as the Father, and it would not be accurate to say that. Personally, I do not see it as unChristian, though it does get confusing when you consider their form of the gospel. My concern with Oneness theology is more with the works salvation soteriology.

    It is interesting that IMO many Christians of other persuasions hold to some form of modalism and don't even know it. In fact, we (the elders of our church) were interviewing a young seminary student who had graduated from a Bible college so that we could approve him as the youth director of our church. We asked him several doctrinal questions as well as others to see if he was prepared to lead. I said something like, "How would you describe your understanding of the trinity?" I paused, then I said, "Would you agree that God sometimes appears in the form of the Father, sometimes in the form of the Son and other times in the form of the Spirit?" He was agreeing before our pastor told him that I was leading him down a path. Often even fairly mature believers misunderstand the trinity.

    So I don't react too much when believers struggle in this area. But you are knowledgeable about the teaching of the Word in this area, so I'll have less patience with you I suppose.

    MarkEdward gave a good explanation of the differences between traditional, historical Christianity and Oneness theology. It's been my personal experience that often those who hold to Oneness theology that I have met misunderstand what Trinitarianism teaches. They see it as Polytheism, which it is not.

    CARM gives us some good questions to be asked of those who hold to Oneness theology. IMO if we simply ask a few good questions it becomes apparent that Oneness theology has issues in how they handle the Godhead:

    1. Is Jesus His own Father?
    2. If Jesus' will and the Father's will were identical, then why did Jesus express the desire to escape the cup but resigns Himself not to His own will, but the will of the Father?
    3. Was Jesus praying to Himself in the Garden of Gethsemane?
    4. If Jesus was praying to the divine side of Himself, then isn't He still praying to Himself?
    5. Why was Jesus not saying, "Not My will, but MY will be done?" if there is only one person and one will involved when He was praying in Luke 22:42 and Matt. 26:39.
    6. Since the Bible teaches us that Jesus is in bodily form now (Col. 2:9), then how does the Oneness Pentecostal person maintain that God is in the form of the Holy Spirit? Also, when Jesus returns, will He return in His body? Will God's form then revert to the form of the Son at a later date?
    7. If God is only one person, why did Jesus say in John 14:23, "If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him." If God is only one person, why does Jesus say, "we"?
    8. Oneness theology teaches that God was in the mode of the Father in the Old Testament. God was seen in the OT (not as a vision or a dream or an angel in the following verses: Exo. 6:2-3; Gen. 19:24; Num. 12:6-8). But, Jesus said no one has seen the Father (John 6:46). If they were seeing God Almighty (Exo. 6:2-3) but it wasn't the Father, then who was it?


    Personally, I have an issue with how Oneness treats the fact that Jesus become a human being (flesh) at a point-in-time. You see, the Father and the Spirit do not have a human nature, yet the Son did and does still. Hence whether they realize it or not Oneness theology affects the gospel. So it is not surprising then that Oneness theology holds to a form of salvation by faith plus works. Another major distinction of Oneness theology is that it also holds to the necessity of water baptism for salvation, which ties right into their works-oriented soteriology.

    But I'd be very interested in PPS's answers to CARM's questions above.

    I'm not trying to give PPS a hard time, because I do not expect him to change his position, but I want those watching this thread to see the common sense errors in logic of such a theology. I noticed that some have remarked here that they essentially agree with the Oneness view of the Godhead. But it is in error. I wouldn't say it is a cult or that it is even unChristian, though I believe that CARM may view it as such. But it is error.

    Take care,

    BD
    3 John 4 - "No greater joy can I have than this, to hear that my [spiritual] children walk in the truth.

    BadDog!

  2. #47
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by TexUs View Post
    I guess the word Atheism isn't found in Scripture, either, eh??? I guess there aren't any Atheists nowadays?

    What about divinity?
    Incarnation?
    Rapture?

    Yet these are all words not found in the Bible, yet we don't question these.
    Actually, the word "atheist" is in the Bible.

    Ephesians 2:12 . . . remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.

    The phrase "without God", in the Greek is "atheoi", the plural of "atheos", the original meaning of "atheist" being "without God."

    Now back to your originally scheduled program

  3. #48
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by PneumaPsucheSoma View Post
    I risk potential disfellowship from the board by even broaching the subject beyond certain boundaries; and I'm not even advocating Oneness.
    Like I said, electrified fence.

  4. #49
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    John 8:16 And yet if I judge, my judgment is true: for I am not alone, but I and the Father that sent me.
    17 It is also written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true.
    18 I am one that bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me.
    19 Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.

    I find it interesting that in Isaiah 41, God is singular throughout the chapter except when he has to act as a witness, and then he turns himself into a plural (a good example is Isa 41:23).

    I find it interesting that Webster dictionary defines a person as that which makes God the Father different from God the Son and the Holy Spirit.

    Shalom

  5. #50
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    I didn't duck out; just time-limited to give the appropriate epic response, which will be forthcoming soon.

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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Well, I was raised to think that there is no trinity, and God is one. I was raised that you didnt pray in the name of God the father, the son, and thje holy spirit, but in the name of Jesus. I actually can't find any scriptual evidence that there are 3 Godheads. Yes, the bible does mention there are God, son, and holy spirit, but where in the bible does it say to pray in the name of the father, the son, and the holy spirit?

  7. #52

    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by Punchy View Post
    Well, I was raised to think that there is no trinity, and God is one. I was raised that you didnt pray in the name of God the father, the son, and thje holy spirit, but in the name of Jesus. I actually can't find any scriptual evidence that there are 3 Godheads. Yes, the bible does mention there are God, son, and holy spirit, but where in the bible does it say to pray in the name of the father, the son, and the holy spirit?
    It says we're to baptize.

  8. #53

    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    All of the Apostles' letters give blessing "from" the Father and "from" the Lord Jesus Christ. Second John, in particular, explicitly says "from God the Father and from Jesus Christ the Father's Son". If they're the same "person" (i.e. Oneness), why is John's benediction from the Father and the Son? Oneness theology requires a massacre of basic language comprehension to avoid seeing the Father and Son as distinct from one another.

    Revelation makes a distinction between the Father and Jesus throughout the entire book, starting with verse 1.1; God gives Jesus the revelation to pass on. If Jesus is the same "person" as God the Father, how can Jesus be given something by God? How does "God give God" something? Throughout the book are references to "the word of God and the testimony of Jesus", a distinction between the Father and Son. Verses 1.4-5; three "and from"s, making a complete distinction between the Father (him who is and who was and who will be), the Holy Spirit (the seven spirits which are before his throne), and the Son (Jesus Christ the faithful witness). Verse 1.6, Jesus has "made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father". A full distinction between the Son and Father. Verse 2.27, Jesus receives his authority from the Father, a full distinction between the Son and Father. Verse 3.2, Jesus refers to the Father as "my God"; how can the Father be Jesus' own God if Jesus is the Father himself? Verse 3.5, Jesus says he will confess his followers "before my Father and before his angels". Jesus continued to both speak about the Father in the third person even following his ascension to heaven, and refer to him as his own Father (i.e. "my Father"); this makes no sense in Oneness theology, because Jesus is the Father, and cannot speak of himself as "my Father". How would Jesus go about "confessing" to himself, anyway? Verse 3.12; same as above. Verse 3.21; same. Verses 5.1-5, John sees the Father sitting on his throne in heaven, and weeps because "no one in heaven" could open the sealed scroll. The Lamb appears and approaches the One on the throne, because the Lamb is worthy to open the scroll. First, the appearance of the Lamb apart from the One on the throne makes a full distinction between the Son and the Father. Second, if the One on the throne is Jesus, and the Lamb is Jesus, why was John told that "no one in heaven" could open the scroll? The One on the throne was in heaven when that was said, so if the One on the throne is Jesus, then Jesus is not worthy to open the scroll...? It's a complete contradiction in Oneness theology. Verse 5.13; the angels in heaven praise the One on the throne and the Lamb, making a full distinction between the two as the Father and the Son. Verse 6.16; same distinction. Verse 7.10; same distinction. Verse 11.15; same distinction. Verse 12.5; the birth, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus are summarized in a single symbolic action, and John explicitly depicts the "man-child" (Jesus) being caught up "to God and to his throne", depicting a full distinction between the Son and the Father. Verse 12.10; same distinction. Verse 12.17; same. Verse 14.1; same. Verse 14.4; same. Verse 14.12; same. Verse 20.4; same. Verse 20.6; same. Verse 21.22; same. Verse 21.23; same. Verse 22.1; same.

  9. #54
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Mod warning: if Oneness continues to be supported and promoted, this thread will be closed. The position that we uphold here is Trinitarian, and is an issue that is non-negotiable.
    Seek ye FIRST the kingdom.
    Not second or third, but first.
    Only when all else pales to God, when He receives all glory,
    when He is the source of all hope,
    when His love is received and freely given,
    holding not to the world but to the promise to come,
    will all other things be added unto to you.


  10. #55
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by threebigrocks View Post
    Mod warning: if Oneness continues to be supported and promoted, this thread will be closed. The position that we uphold here is Trinitarian, and is an issue that is non-negotiable.
    Hi 3-

    My intention was/is to contrast the two. As I've said, I'm not advocating Oneness. My purpose was to promote expression, not debate. I remain frustrated about the relatively small number of believers who can thoroughly convey what they believe.

    Every tenet of faith ought to be examined.

  11. #56
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    If you have issue, we can discuss freely in C2Mods. Feel free to start a thread there if you would like to continue along the lines you stated above.
    Seek ye FIRST the kingdom.
    Not second or third, but first.
    Only when all else pales to God, when He receives all glory,
    when He is the source of all hope,
    when His love is received and freely given,
    holding not to the world but to the promise to come,
    will all other things be added unto to you.


  12. #57

    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by PneumaPsucheSoma View Post
    My intention was/is to contrast the two. As I've said, I'm not advocating Oneness. My purpose was to promote expression, not debate. I remain frustrated about the relatively small number of believers who can thoroughly convey what they believe.
    It's not possible to "thoroughly" convey what we have limited info in Scripture for.

    Like I posted way back originally, I posted what we knew of the Trinity. There is one God. Christ was God, Father is God, Holy Spirit is God. From those basic principles come the Trinity.

    Since we won't entertain oneness theology then I won't comment on that farther.

  13. #58
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by TexUs View Post
    It's not possible to "thoroughly" convey what we have limited info in Scripture for.

    Like I posted way back originally, I posted what we knew of the Trinity. There is one God. Christ was God, Father is God, Holy Spirit is God. From those basic principles come the Trinity.

    Since we won't entertain oneness theology then I won't comment on that farther.
    Just to clarify: I'm not confused and looking for answers; I pose questions to draw out expression from others. Though I'm always enlightened by various responses, I'm not on a wholesale search for information.

    As for "limited" info in scripture, He IS the Word. I can assure you that a few 40 day fasts will pop some stuff right open that seemed to be limited. There is always deeper revelation available.

  14. #59

    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Just for the record, I would not recommend fasting for 40 days in an attempt to better understand the Trinity. I would rather suggest a rightful dividing of the word of God - meaning, in this case, the Bible.

    Jesus is the Word, yes, the Word being God, an essential person of the triune God.

    The word in our context is the scriptures, and they are sufficient. 2 Tm 3:16


    Just like to hear myself type

  15. #60
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    Re: Compare and Contrast: Trinity and Oneness

    Quote Originally Posted by SFASH View Post
    Just for the record, I would not recommend fasting for 40 days in an attempt to better understand the Trinity. I would rather suggest a rightful dividing of the word of God - meaning, in this case, the Bible.

    Jesus is the Word, yes, the Word being God, an essential person of the triune God.

    The word in our context is the scriptures, and they are sufficient. 2 Tm 3:16
    Ummmm... I think you entirely missed the point; but, okay. BTW... What exactly WOULD you recommend a 40 day fast for? (Having been on many, I assume.)

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