The Trinity

The Trinity
IS IT POSSIBLE TO BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST AND REJECT THE TRINITY?

“Now on the final and most important day of the feast, Jesus stood forth and cried in a loud voice, If any man is thirsty, let him come to me and drink! He who believes in Me as the Scripture has said, Out from his innermost being springs and rivers of living water shall flow (continuously). But He was speaking here of the Spirit, Whom those who believed in Him were afterward to receive. For the Holy Spirit had not yet been given; because Jesus was not yet glorified (raised to honour). (John 7: 37-39).

Satan’s prime strategy from the very beginning of creation has always been to destroy faith by presenting mankind with something that looks like the genuine item. In the parable in Matthew 13: 24-30 the darnel or tares, sown by the enemy, look exactly like wheat in the early stages of its growth and only show its true colours at harvest time.

True to its botanical nature one grain of wheat produces several new ears of wheat only when it dies, a fact taken up by Christ to show that spiritual fruitfulness has its origin in the death of self (John 12: 24; 1 Corinthians 5: 36).

The darnel or tares are completely void of any such botanical traits and remain a wheat-like grass without producing any fruit right up to harvest time. Here Jesus makes it very clear that genuine faith always translates into a change in life, a change of mind, growth and fruitfulness. This is borne out by what Paul says in Hebrews 12: 14, “Follow after peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no man shall see the Lord:”

A biblical founded faith must translate into a growth in sanctification. Please observe that it is not a growth to or up to sanctification, but in sanctification. We are justified by faith alone in Christ alone and in the same way He imputes sanctification to sinners the moment they are saved. From that instant onward the saint must abide in Christ in order to grow in grace and sanctification.

WHAT DETERMINES GENUINE FAITH?

Jesus chose the final and most important day of the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles to announce in a loud voice the only prerequisite for a genuine faith – He who believes in Me as the Scripture has said. Everything necessary to acquire a genuine biblical faith has already been said in God’s Word. Scripture form Genesis 1: 1 through to Revelation 22: 21 contains God’s only and final word on faith and salvation. All other extra-biblical revelations (including Joseph Smith’s Golden Plates, The Jehovah’s Witnesses NWT of the Bible, Roman Catholicism’s Church traditions or any other prophet or visionary’s alleged encounter with Jesus Christ) do not and cannot hold true to Jesus Christ’s words in John 7 and must therefore be rejected.

Having established, on the strength of Jesus’ words in John 7, that holy writ is altogether sufficient for the acquirement of the faith necessary for one’s salvation and sanctification, it is obviously also vital to know the Person or Persons who wrote it.

The validity of a letter or a document is not determined by its own intrinsic value but by the character or the moral fibre of the person who wrote it. People who claim they believe in Jesus Christ but deny that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God, are deceiving themselves and disqualifying themselves as genuine believers. It is impossible to maintain a belief in someone and simultaneously reject his personal biography. In similar vein, everyone who maintains that he/she believes in Jesus Christ, but denies His deity or the Trinity is disavowing the moral fibre and character of the Author of the Bible.

WHO IS THE AUTHOR?

Although the word “Trinity” never appears in the Bible – a fact many of God’s enemies use to discredit the validity of His Word. (Perhaps they should start looking for the word “automobile” or “aeroplane” in Scripture to make sure they really exist) – it is not at all difficult to prove that three Deities (three equally omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Gods in one Godhood) were involved in producing it.

In His answer to the woman who said, “Blessed is the womb that bore You, and the breasts that You sucked!” Jesus used the word “Theos” when He said, Blessed are they that hear the Word of God (“Theos”) and keep it” (Luke 11: 27) The Greek word “Theos” (God) does not refer to a single person but clearly to the Godhead, comprising of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

In the well-known verse where Paul says that “all scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” (2 Timothy 3: 16), he uses the Greek word “Theopneustos” (theh-op’-nyoo-stos) which is derived from “Theos” and means that the Word was inspired by all three the Persons in the Godhead or Trinity. Apart from these definitive verses, there are several others where only One of the Persons in the Trinity are mentioned as the inspired source of the Word. Consider the following: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom;” (Colossians 3: 16) and “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.” (2 Peter 1: 21).

WHAT LIES AT THE ROOT OF MANKIND’S REJECTION OF GOD’S WORD?

– Only one thing – unbelief. Anyone who does not believe in the Triune God according to what the Bible teaches cannot claim to be saved. Perhaps they could have avowed with certainty their salvation if Jesus had only said, “He who believes in Me . . .,” but He qualified the kind of faith that is necessary to believe in Him, i.e. “as the Scripture has said.”

The Holy Spirit Who was sent to convict the world of sin, righteousness and judgment will never move outside of the bounds of Holy Writ when leading a sinner to faith in Jesus Christ. Any “belief” or “faith” remotely off limits with the Bible cannot save. If it were true that any kind of faith was able to save, then Jesus lied when he said, “as the Scripture has said.” How can anyone expect to be convicted of sin by the 3rd Person in the Holy Trinity if they reject the Trinity?

In the same breath one may ask, how can anyone expect to be cleansed of their sins if they regard Jesus Christ merely as one of God’s creations? God strictly forbids anyone to worship a created being because it is nothing else than idolatry.

What are the consequences of unbelief? WHAT ARE THE CONSE

a) They do not have the Word of God and no light in them (John 5: 38; Isaiah 8: 20).

b) They cannot please God (Hebrews 11: 6)

c) They malign and discredit the Gospel (Acts 19: 9)

d) They persecute the ministers of righteousness (Romans 15: 31)

e) They incite others against the saints who preach the Gospel (Acts 14: 2).

f) They persevere in their unbelief (John 12: 37).

g) They harden their necks (2 Kings 17: 14).

h) They are condemned already (John 3: 18).

i) The wrath of God abides on them (John 3: 36).

j) They shall die in their sins (John 8: 24).

k) They shall not enter God’s rest (Hebrews 3:19; 4:11).

l) They shall be condemned (Mark 16:16; 2Thessalonians 2:12).

m) They shall be cast in the lake of fire (Revelation 21: 8).

“Since all this is true, we ought to pay much closer attention than ever to the truths that we have heard, lest in any way we drift past [them – the truths] and slip away. For if the message given through angels [that is, the Law spoken by them to Moses] was authentic and proved sure, and every violation and disobedience received an appropriate (just and adequate) penalty. How shall we escape if we neglect and refuse to pay attention to such a great salvation [as is now offered to us, letting it drift past us forever?] For it was declared at first by the Lord [Himself] and it was confirmed to us by those who personally heard [Him speak]. (Hebrews 2: 1-3).

[Therefore] while it is [still] called Today, if you would hear His voice, and when you hear it, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion . . . Today, if you would hear His voice, and when you hear it, do not harden your hearts.” (Hebrews 3: 15; 4: 7).

“Examine and test and evaluate your own selves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test and prove yourselves, [not Christ]. Do you not yourselves realize and know [thoroughly by an ever-increasing experience] that Jesus Christ is in you? unless you are [counterfeits] disapproved on trial and rejected! (2 Corinthians 13: 5).

IS YOUR SALVATION SECURE IF YOU BELIEVE THAT JESUS IS GOD AND MAN BUT KNEW NOTHING OF THE HOLY SPIRIT? (1 Corinthians 15)

When Paul first presented the Gospel to the Corinthians their thoughts were steeped in Greek Philosophy. The Greeks did not believe in the resurrection of the body as they proved by their attitude when Paul preached to them on Mars Hill (Acts 17:32). They laughed at him.

Their philosophers taught that the body was weak and a wicked prison of the soul, and the sooner it was released through death the better. They refused to accept that the body could live on after death. This was what Paul had to contend with when he wrote them this letter. The Corinthians did not doubt the resurrection of Christ and therefore Paul centred his discourse around this immutable truth in stead of repentance or salvation.

Indeed, something to remember is that Paul’s intention was not to bring them the Gospel. They had already accepted the Gospel and were indeed saved. They were well-acquainted with the Spirit’s work in their lives when they believed in Jesus Christ and His Gospel.

All that Paul needed to do was to prove to them that they, like Christ, would be resurrected from the dead. Furthermore, the resurrection of Christ itself is proof enough of the Holy Spirit’s work in the Gospel of salvation although the Spirit is not mentioned in chapter 15.

In Romans 8: 11 Paul says, “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwelleth in you, he that raised up Christ Jesus from the dead shall give life also to your mortal bodies through his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” The Corinthians must have known this but could have been confused by false teachers and apostles. So, although the Spirit is not mentioned in chapter 15, His role in the Gospel of salvation is made clear by Paul’s discourse on the resurrection of Christ.

DOES ACTS 19 PROVE IT IS UNNECESSARY TO KNOW OR ACKNOWLEDGE THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE TRINITY?

Some hold to the view that the twelve men Paul encountered in Ephesus were saved and base their argument on the fact that they were disciples. (verse 1). However the word “mathetes” (disciple) simply means “learner” or “pupil” and was a very well-known concept, especially amongst the Greeks.

Each philosopher had his own group of disciples, much like a professor of today who teaches a class of his own pupils. Because the term disciple was so well-known, Jesus qualified His particular brand of discipleship by His demand to deny oneself, take up the cross, to follow Him and learn from Him. Although the twelve were called disciples (learners or pupils) they were not disciples of Christ, but disciples of John the Baptist

The twelve should have known there was a Holy Spirit because the major thrust of of John the Baptist’s preaching was Christ’s future Baptism with the Holy Spirit and fire (Matthew 3: 11). They should have known the Holy Spirit was to be given, but they were ignorant of the fact that He had already been given on the day of Pentecost.

Note carefully how brilliant Paul approached the problem in the manner he posed the question, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” He did not ask them “Were you baptized by John the Baptist when or after you believed?” or “Do you know the Holy Spirit.” Had he asked them the latter question, they would probably have answered “Yes, we were baptized by John when we believed.” If they had said this and if Paul hadn’t known that the baptism of the Holy Spirit is a spiritual baptism, they would probably have forfeited the wonderful opportunity to be saved (Romans 8:9).

Paul the true gentleman that he was, assumed that they believed but tested their faith by asking them whether they had received the Holy Spirit. Knowing of the existence of the Holy Spirit and receiving Him are two completely different things. Had they indeed been saved they would have known that they had received the Holy Spirit because He and He alone applies the cleansing power of the blood of Christ to a sinner’s soul the moment he/she believes. The testimony of the Spirit within gives the assurance of your salvation (Romans 8: 16) and they did not have that inner witness because they did not even know that the Spirit was already given to quicken them the moment they believed.

So, what was the source of their problem? John the Baptist’s baptism had a two-pronged message attached to it – baptism unto repentance and belief in the One Who was to come after Him. Whether Apollos failed to convey this message in full, we do not know. We do however know that there was a flaw in his presentation of the Gospel because we read in the previous chapter (Acts 18 : 26) that “when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him with them and explained to him the way of God more definitely and accurately.” Whoever preaches the Gospel must present the full council of God.

They received the baptism of John without a full understanding of the necessity for repentance AND FAITH in the One Who baptizes in the Spirit and with fire and therefore was not saved. Ah! but how wonderful and precious is the unmerited grace of God. He did not allow them to continue in their unbelief and sent his servant Paul to present to them His full council.

John 14 from verse 18 shows that the presentation of the Gospel is the responsibility of all three of the Persons in the Trinity. “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me [GOD THE SON]: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and verse 21). “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father [GOD THE FATHER] will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. (verse 23) “These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. whom the Father will send in my name, he [GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT] shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”(verse 25). Whoever believes as the Scripture has said, will know and believe in the Trinity because all three introduce themselves to the person who comes to Christ for salvation.

Please share:

Tom (Discerning the World)

Tom Lessing is the author of the above article. Discerning the World is an internet Christian Ministry based in Johannesburg South Africa. Tom Lessing and Deborah Ellish both own Discerning the World. For more information see the About this Website page below the comments section.

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12 Comment authors
Tom (Discerning the World)Marlene R.Tom (Discerning the World)JesseMarthina Recent comment authors
Marthina
Guest
Marthina

Ek het nou hierdie gewoonte: om nie hierdie blog oop te maak voor ek nie my Bybel ook oop het nie ?
Baie insiggewend wanneer mens Joh 17 lees. Waar Jesus vir sy dissippels bid net voor hy gevange geneem is.
Die volgende verse praat vanself:
Joh17: 11 “… HeiligeVader , bewaar in U Naam die wat U My gegee het, sodat hulle een kan wees net soos Ons.”
Joh 17: 21 ” dat almal een mag wees net soos U, Vader, in My, en Ek in U; dat hulle ook in Ons een mag wees,…”

Ek sal liewer dat die Skrif praat en ek nie verder iets byvoeg nie. Die HeiligeGees moet nog baie aan my werk….

Dankie Deb en Tom vir hierdie SuidAfrikaanse blog Dis baie goed om hierdie platvorm in my eie taal ook te he.

Jesse
Guest

Non-Trinitarian views of God undermine the gospel, and are philosophically indefensible. No mere man could have invented a doctrine as complex, yet so profound, as that of the Trinity. There are several biblical texts that can be used to defend every aspect of that doctrine, both in the Old and the New Testaments. Anyway, here’s an article you guys might find interesting:

https://rationalchristiandiscernment.blogspot.com/2019/01/romans-109-proves-jesus-is-god-almighty.html

If you check out my post, you’ll see an angry unitarian there in the comments section. So I know that Romans 10:9 is a good text to bring up when discussing the Trinity. It essentially says, “Jesus is God.” A lot of those unitarian types (in my experience) appear to be quite liberal in their theology, which includes them rejecting the divine inspiration of Scripture. In that case, why should they appeal to the text of Scripture at all?

God bless.

Marlene R.
Guest
Marlene R.

AMEN to the writer\moderator\administrator of this blog. Our son has been in a Oneness “church” for almost 24 years, having been converted to that heretical doctrine and teaching by a friend of his. I know almost EXACTLY when this took place: our son was only around 19 or 20 and very lonely on the ship he was on (in the Navy). I surmise that this “friend” of his convinced him that the Trinitarian doctrines–of which he was a part of since birth–was wrong, AND heretical.

For many years we (my husband and I) have tried to show him, to reason with him–that this “new” epiphany he had via his friend’s teachings–is NOT what the Bible teaches, to no avail.

One way that the Oneness and other modalists succeed in gaining a convert to their heretical doctrines is that they find a person who is discouraged, depressed and lonely–and then target them as a good candidate for their blasphemous doctrine. Such was the case with our son. To make matters worse, he met and married a Oneness girl, which further cements him into this “faith.”
The end result is that his parents–meaning us–are not following the “truth”, a.k.a. the Oneness, Praxeus, Noetus, Modalistic faith and that his is the true one. Sounds like a cult. It is.
They have very little to do with us throughout the years. Their children, even when young, were NEVER allowed to stay and visit with their grandparents (us), BUT they ARE allowed to stay with women in their “church”, some of whom I wouldn’t even bother saying hello to; they are THAT freaky-spooky.

We have repeatedly asked for the children to stay. The answer is “Ask _____ (our son) or “Ask __________ (our daughter-in-law), passing the explanation to the other spouse, and so the end result is we NEVER have gotten an answer, BUT in the 21 years they’re married, the children came ot stay with us ONCE: the oldest girl was about seven and her sister was about five.

Anniversaries, birthdays, etc. you name it. All these years we’re lucky if he or she calls us more than the standard eight times a year: Christmas, New Year, Thanksgiving, my husband’s birthday, my birthday, our anniversary, Father’s Day and Mother’s Day. Out of the average 365 days a year, our contact with them (their choice, not ours) is limited to these civil days, meaning that the other 357 days of the year, we have NO IDEA if they’re dead or alive, hurt and in the hospital or home and healthy, whether the children are well, doing well in school, having dates (yes–with boys ONLY from their cult), or any other reason.

You could say to me, “well, why don’t YOU call them?” We do. They stay on the phone for a few minutes, perhaps half an hour at most, then they have to “let me let you go now,” which of course we know why they want to hang up: they don’t want us to pry into their lives, nor do they want any close relationship with us.

How very sad this is to us personally, since our son was NEVER like this–not in all the years he was with us from birth until he joined the Navy at age 19. He and I have ALWAYS been close to each other. I am his Mom, after all, so I thought that our relationship would last. Sadly the answer is no more.

The first thing I noticed was that he wasn’t smiling or laughing anymore. He was always a great young man; sometimes serious, but most times a LOT of fun to be around. I miss his laugh most of all. I don’t even know the last time I heard him REALLY laughing. That, too, has been taken from him; he doesn’t even know it.

It has caused a LOT of anger and hurt within us, oh, and if we tell them that this “relationship” is suffering, we get the pat answer that “we don’t want to hear anything negative;” to the point that the children (ages 15 and up to 23) have also been taught, so that closes the door.

We have missed ALL THESE YEARS with the children. They live in one state and us in another, but before we moved to a southern state, we lived close enough–ten hours–that it was doable to drive both ways. Now it’s too far, so that gives them another excuse. We have learned the hard way to forget about any chance for having a “normal” family; they took that away from us.

I don’t want to sound ignorant of their doctrine; quite the opposite: I spent almost an equally amount of time all these years to become familiar with their heretical beliefs, doctrines and outright denials of the TRUE Gospel as it is presented in the Bible. They are so conditioned that if you ask a question that disrupts their beliefs, they will automatically come back at you with the brainwashed answer they get from their “church’s” teachings.

In other words, for every Scripture you present, they have the “answer” as taught to them by their spiritual “leaders,” of whom are their “giants”: David K. Bernard for one, plus a myriad of others too numerous to mention. By the way, speaking of David K. Bernard, his teaching on church history is 100% absolutely PERVERTED and false. I had to do my own research on this because I was so shocked as to what he taught. This is the trap our son is in.

SO–whenever anyone says that this heretical teaching, that can be traced all the way back to Praxeus and Noetus–two false teachers that taught this damnable heresy–and were CONDEMNED and rejected by the early church fathers–is somehow the “truth,” reject not the person, but their doctrine that was spawned in hell and presented to the world by these blasphemers.

Just about EVERYTHING that the Oneness people believe are lies, distortions of the Scriptures, denied by them, twisted to fit their own agenda and literally brainwashed into their brains by those up the ladder in knowledge than the average person who is following them. It IS an inclusive cult and it IS heretical.

Take what you will from my post–I have been studying this cult since the day I found out our son is involved. We have several books from authors who are way smarter than I am in refuting them. There are also several trusted websites and videos out there, designed to teach us all about them.

Do I hate the proponents of this? No. Rather I pray that their eyes would be open before it is too late for them. They lost Nathaniel (their leader) a few years ago. They have also tangled with other Christians such as the late Dr. Walter Martin of “The Kingdom of the Cults” fame, and E. Calvin Beisner on the John Ankerberg show several years ago, before Dr. Martin passed away.
Of course their main thrust is to deny the Trinity, in spite of it being presented to all mankind from Genesis to Revelation. Their second biggest teaching is that Jesus Christ did NOT exist until He was born; that is the heretical teaching of the denial of Jesus Christ’s eternality; they also teach that you MUST be water baptized or you are not saved. I once asked our son about children and adults who have not yet been water baptized: do they all go to hell? What if they are a Christian and the scheduling of the water baptism isn’t for another month or so; do they die in their sins? Of course we all know that we are NOT saved by water baptism; theirs is a works religion.

I also know that if they were to leave, they immediately get shunned by others in their cult. I also know that THE one thing they cannot bear within themselves is the FEAR of not living “holy” enough, or doing enough to and for others.
For example, our daughter-in-law is CONSTANTLY doing things for the church; decorating at holidays, teaching SS, playing the piano and singing, etc. basically never saying “no” to anything that is asked of her. While that may be commendable, it is NOT how anyone gains entrance into the Kingdom of God–It is by FAITH not of works, lest any man should boast, Paul wrote.

Everyone out there, PLEASE do NOT let these people swallow you up with their unScriptural teachings. It is a path that you cannot escape, but for the grace of God. All these years, we have never stopped praying that they all get out of this before it’s too late for them. Yes, I do get discouraged and say to my husband that I will not bother praying for them because “what’s the use? they’re never getting otu,” yet I am compelled to continue. This is OUR son. This is HIS children, so in spite of how I feel, I MUST pray for them continuously, whether or not I see any changes.

PS: we are both in our 60’s, so please excuse the typo’s. Without reading glasses, I cannot see very well anymore.
God Bless all of you who are doing a fantastic job of exposing the teachings that do NOT come from Scriptures.

Marlene R.
Guest
Marlene R.

Mr. Tom: Thank you for your comment. I would like to say something that I did not say last night to you, so you understand where I am coming from.
First, i should have mentioned that I am at the place where if he and his family call, hey, that’s great; if they don’t, hey, that’s great, too.

I have resolved myself to NOT seek after our two children’s salvation (We also have a daughter), other than to pray for them. It is their choice; they are both over 45 years old, married with kids of their own. Big kids now, mine are.

I have given them over to God a long time ago. What I was writing was my basic experience I\we have had concerning them over the time period of when our son first got into this mess–this so-called “church” and all its darkness.

I am sold out on Jesus Christ; I am saved for 47 years and also teach SS class (from ages 5-?). I do take rest in the fact that Jesus is my Lord and that HE answers prayer.

I completely understand what you wrote here and I agree 100%. I am well aware of my focus being on the One Who cleansed me, saved my soul and guides me by His Spirit into all truth and righteousness.

You stated, “And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.”

Absolutely correct. I stopped worrying about their spiritual wellbeing a long, long time ago. I keep this Scripture foremost in my mind, so I do not concentrate on their situation.

Both of them went their ways a long time ago. The division that Jesus speaks about is describing our household to a “t”.

Our daughter has a much different relationship with us–she thinks she knows better than us, however she is also a backslider and living for amusement, entertainment and money–plenty of it. That’s up to her. She made that decision\choice many years ago.

I will never stop praying for these two of mine, but I have distanced myself from them emotionally and spiritually, as they have with us. As long as they are alive and basically well, that’s really all I care about with them.

Do I want both of them to come back to the side of the Cross again? Of course, but I don’t let their relationship distance–or lack of– take hold of me.

Yes, it certainly DOES hurt; we are their parents and we are still humans. One of my favorite Scriptures is in Genesis:
16:13 “Thou God seest me.” To me that means that God is seeing and listening to all this; He is not blind or lame where He cannot intercede for us through His Son Jesus Christ. He sees all the pain, the anguish, the frustrations, the insults tossed to us–He sees all of it.

I am very familiar with other Christians being in this position as parents. It is not easy to let them go and turn them over to Our Lord, but it must be done, else you find yourself lacking…

As to my “worthiness,” I never consider that in my life; I am the least of His and am doing what I was called to do and am capable of doing right now: teaching and passing out tracts, which I have been doing since I became a born again Christian. Should He choose to give me other things to do for the Kingdom, that would be great, but for now I am faithful in the little things and I do not “despise the day of the small things” in my life.

Thank you for the encouragement.