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Is The Trinity Doctrine A Bible Teaching?

 
 
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Mon 19 Feb, 2018 06:53 am
@brianjakub,
Please note the response to InfraBlue
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Mon 19 Feb, 2018 01:08 pm
@anthony1312002,
anthony1312002, paraphrasing jw.org, wrote:
But a special note regarding John 1:1 should also be included. Greek grammar and the context strongly indicate that the rendering that “the Word” should not be identified as the “God” referred to earlier in the verse. Nevertheless, the fact that the Greek language of the first century did not have an indefinite article (“a” or “an”) leaves the matter open to question in some minds. It is for this reason that a Bible translation in a language that was spoken in the earliest centuries of our Common Era is very interesting.

Says the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania. "Strongly indicate"? That's their justification for interpretational translation, not direct translation.

A more direct translation, sans the contortions of the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania, of John 1:1 reads, "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with the, ton τὸν, God and God was the Word." "Ton" is a definite, accusative case article that means "the." There is no need to suppose that the verse needs an additional "a."

Be careful with ideologically motivated translations.

anthony1312002 wrote:
Hey InfraBlue. Interestingly at both John 1:1 and 10:38 only 2 persons are involved here, Jesus and his Father. Nothing inferring a 3rd individual is present in these texts.

Right. Other parts of the Bible are used as well to justify the idea of the Trinity.

anthony1312002 wrote:
Also, in the matter of interpretation, this is something I don't engage in.

So, you don't, but the Watch Tower Bible and Tract Society of Pennsylvania does, to the point of mistranslating the Bible as per their interpretations. Got it.
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Mon 19 Feb, 2018 01:34 pm
@anthony1312002,
Quote:
Please note the response to InfraBlue


InfraBlue is doing a great job of interpreting scripture. I am interpreting nature through science, philosophy, and natural law. I am doing that because all atoms are words God spoke into existence and are words storing His information. The words of nature cannot contradict the Bible, and both (the Bible and nature) can be used to determine a proper interpretation of the other in concordance with the Holy Spirit.

I would like to hear your comments on natural law and science as it describes the nature God created to reveal and share His knowledge with us as we experience life.
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Feb, 2018 06:11 am
@InfraBlue,
Well, if your willing to do the research you will find that they are correct. But that's neither here nor there because this is not about us trying to prove who is right and who is wrong. For me it is only a matter of helping people see what the Bible really teaches, helping people see that God and his Son are not some unknowable mysterious trinity. But as Jesus said to his disciples at Luke 10:22 “Who the Son is no one knows but the Father; and who the Father is, no one knows but the Son, and he to whom the Son is willing to reveal him.

Jesus clearly revealed to his disciples who the Father was and who he was. That is why in each of the 4 Gospels, when Jesus asked them who they thought he was, in each case the reply was the same, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God" They said exactly what they meant and, understood.
0 Replies
 
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Feb, 2018 06:18 am
@brianjakub,
You are correct in that the words of nature cannot contradict the Bible, and that both the Bible and nature can be used to determine a proper interpretation (understanding) of the rest of Scripture through Holy Spirit.

But as you know, the Bible is under a tremendous attack in an effort to discredit it as being the actual Word of God. Some say that it is not relevant to the issues facing man today. As a matter of fact, that would be a very good subject line to discuss. "Is The Bible Still Relevant Today?" What are your thoughts?
hightor
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Feb, 2018 08:28 am
@anthony1312002,
Quote:
"Is The Bible Still Relevant Today?"

It's as relevant as it ever was as a record of Jesus's ministry. One reason it's been discredited is because of the various other contemporary writings that were once part of the canon tell a different story. These were condemned as heresies and the followers were persecuted. This raises questions and objections similar to those raised about the Trinity and suggests that politics had a bigger role to play than spirituality.

People can point to any and all the obscure textual references to "prove" that the Trinity is a biblical doctrine but the fact that neither Jesus nor Paul even mention the idea and the fact that specific Trinitarian references are known to have been additions to the original Greek text at the time of the Arian controversy cast a shadow on the enterprise. It's all a matter of selective and creative interpretation as can be done with any work of fiction.

As the Unitarian Sir Isaac Newton wrote:
Quote:
Tis the temper of the hot and superstitious part of mankind in matters of religion ever to be fond of mysteries, and for that reason to like best what they understand least.
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Feb, 2018 08:55 am
@hightor,
Hello hightor, you make a very good point about the political aspect with reference to non-Biblical ideas such the trinity. No doubt you might be making reference to the Council of Nicaea at which Constantine himself presided, relates The Encyclopædia Britannica, “actively guiding the discussions, and personally proposed the crucial formula expressing the relation of Christ to God in the creed issued by the council, ‘of one substance with the Father’ . . . Overawed (or bullied, coerced) by the emperor, the bishops, with two exceptions only, signed the creed, many of them much against their inclination.

History clearly reveals that this move by Constantine was not due to some religious conviction on his part. But rather it was an attempt prevent the fracturing of his power and control as this issue was at that time proving to be a very divisive one. Two of the church fathers resisted, one of whom was Eusebius born in Palestine about 260 C.E.

Eusebius was concerned about the unsettled issue of how the Father and the Son were related. Did the Father exist before the Son, as Eusebius believed? Or did the Father and Son coexist? “If they co-exist,” he asked, “how will the Father be Father and the Son be Son?” He even supported his belief with Scriptural references, citing John 14:28, which says that ‘the Father is greater than Jesus,’ and John 17:3, where Jesus is referred to as the one “sent forth” by the only true God. Alluding to Colossians 1:15 and John 1:1, Eusebius argued that the Logos, or the Word, is “the image of the invisible God”​—God’s Son. Amazingly, though, at the closing of the Council of Nicaea, Eusebius gave his support to the opposing view. Contrary to his Scriptural stand that God and Christ were not coexisting equals, he went along with the emperor.

Why did Eusebius cave in at the Council of Nicaea and support an unscriptural doctrine? Did he have political objectives in mind? Why did he attend the council in the first place? Although all the bishops were summoned, only a fraction​—300—​actually attended. Was Eusebius perhaps concerned about preserving his social status? And why did Emperor Constantine regard him very highly? Eusebius sat at the right hand of the emperor at the council. Apparently Eusebius ignored Jesus’ requirement that His followers be “no part of the world.” (John 17:16; 18:36) “Adulteresses, do you not know that the friendship with the world is enmity with God?” asked the disciple James. (James 4:4) And how appropriate is Paul’s admonition: “Do not become unevenly yoked with unbelievers”! (2 Corinthians 6:14) May we remain separate from the world as we “worship [the Father] with spirit and truth.”​—John 4:24.
0 Replies
 
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Feb, 2018 02:10 pm
@anthony1312002,
The Bible is the actual word Of God. The message was recorded by man as he understood it in the context of their knowledge at the time and it was written. The Proper interpretation of the he Bible is under attack by Christians and non-Christians alike. There is only one correct interpretation. The apostles had the correct interpretation. That interpretation was discussed and documented in the councils of the church and recorded by the doctors of the church. Believe using that information and developing it further as we better understand natural law is the only way to get to the proper interpretation of the Bible.

Developing this interpretation is a process. Part of man's process of learning is making mistakes and Corecting them. But,One thing is for sure the proper interpretation was understood by the early church. That is why, historical tradition and documentation And natural law must all be used to properly interpret scripture, as we incorporate a Christian interpretation of modern societal issues.

I believe the biggest problem being introduced by Christians and non-Christians alike as they interpret the Bible and morality is the unbalanced application of a purely secular point of view instead of tradition and natural law.

We don't need a new understanding of the Bible. We need a better understanding of the old interpretation of the Bible.
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Tue 20 Feb, 2018 03:01 pm
@brianjakub,
Hi brianjakub. I appreciate your response but, I'm not sure I understand what your trying to say? Could you clarify? I mean, I agree with you that the Bible is the Word of God, but the rest of your statement is unclear.
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Feb, 2018 06:28 pm
@anthony1312002,
What does my response say to you? Maybe you do understand it maybe you don’t. I did forget to put the letter “I” before the words “believe using that information”
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Tue 6 Mar, 2018 10:56 am
@brianjakub,
Sorry about the late response. Had a family emergency. But to your point, I believe I understand you more clearly. You hit the nail on the head in mentioning how improper interpretation of Scripture can cause a host of issues. That is why it is best to approach the Bible from the standpoint of a faithful servant of God from of old, Joseph. At Genesis 40:8 Joseph made a profound statement under the inspiration of holy spirit. When giving an answer to the cupbearer and the baker, he said the following:

Gen 40:8 "At this they said to him: “We each had a dream, but there is no interpreter with us.” Joseph said to them: “Do not interpretations belong to God? Relate it to me, please.”

Clearly Joseph understood that Jehovah God is the one who gives the clear understanding of Scripture. As humans we should as Joseph did, allow the Scriptures to interpret themselves and then accept them for what they actually say instead of trying to create a belief based on a personal or cultural bias.
bobo42
 
  1  
Reply Sat 10 Mar, 2018 01:18 pm
@anthony1312002,
The Holy Trinity of God is in these Passages,
The Trinity

check these out----Matthew 28:19, Ephesians 4:4-6, John 3:34, John 14:26, John 15:26, John 16:13-15. Not enough ? I have 70 More !!

Bob
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Mon 12 Mar, 2018 02:22 pm
@bobo42,
Hi bobo42, thank you for you response. Not until the fourth century C.E. did the teaching that the holy spirit was a person and part of the “Godhead” become official church dogma. Early church “fathers” did not so teach; Justin Martyr of the second century C.E. taught that the holy spirit was an ‘influence or mode of operation of the Deity’; Hippolytus likewise ascribed no personality to the holy spirit. The Scriptures themselves unite to show that God’s holy spirit is not a person but is God’s active force by which he accomplishes his purpose and executes his will.

Second, personification does not prove personality. It is true that Jesus spoke of the holy spirit as a “helper” and spoke of such helper as ‘teaching,’ ‘bearing witness,’ ‘giving evidence,’ ‘guiding,’ ‘speaking,’ ‘hearing,’ and ‘receiving.’ In so doing, the original Greek shows Jesus at times applying the masculine personal pronoun to that “helper” (paraclete). (Compare Joh 14:16, 17, 26; 15:26; 16:7-15.) However, it is not unusual in the Scriptures for something that is not actually a person to be personalized or personified. Wisdom is personified in the book of Proverbs (1:20-33; 8:1-36); and feminine pronominal forms are used of it in the original Hebrew, as also in many English translations. (KJ, RS, JP, AT) Wisdom is also personified at Matthew 11:19 and Luke 7:35, where it is depicted as having both “works” and “children.” The apostle Paul personalized sin and death and also undeserved kindness as “kings.” (Ro 5:14, 17, 21; 6:12) He speaks of sin as “receiving an inducement,” ‘working out covetousness,’ ‘seducing,’ and ‘killing.’ (Ro 7:8-11) Yet it is obvious that Paul did not mean that sin was actually a person.

So, likewise with John’s account of Jesus’ words regarding the holy spirit, his remarks must be taken in context. Jesus personalized the holy spirit when speaking of that spirit as a “helper” (which in Greek is the masculine substantive pa·raʹkle·tos). Properly, therefore, John presents Jesus’ words as referring to that “helper” aspect of the spirit with masculine personal pronouns. On the other hand, in the same context, when the Greek pneuʹma is used, John employs a neuter pronoun to refer to the holy spirit, pneuʹma itself being neuter. Hence, we have in John’s use of the masculine personal pronoun in association with pa·raʹkle·tos an example of conformity to grammatical rules, not an expression of doctrine.​—Joh 14:16, 17; 16:7, 8.
0 Replies
 
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Mar, 2018 01:24 pm
@anthony1312002,
Quote:
As humans we should as Joseph did, Allow the Scriptures to interpret themselves and then accept them for what they actually say instead of trying to create a belief system on a personal or cultural bias.
. The belief System existed before scripture. Texts were compiled by the early church and somewhere excepted at scripture and somewhere not. The ones that were chosen we're the ones that supported the belief system established by Jesus Christ. The church existed for several hundred years before the Bible was fully compiled and codified by the church. There is a lot of historical documentation from the early councils of the church, and from the fathers and doctors of the church which fully explains how the church interprets the Bible and teaches it.

It's up to each one of us to do the historical study and decide Are you going to interpret scripture and teach Christianity the way the early fathers and bishops of the church did or, are you going to change it to somebody else's interpretation introduced hundreds of years later.
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Fri 16 Mar, 2018 03:04 pm
@brianjakub,
There is something to note regarding the Scriptural texts that make up our Bible's. Unlike the many belief systems that came into existence as a result of human philosophy and experementation, the Bible has proven to contain wisdom that is far beyond human experience.

It is no wonder that at Jeremiah 10:23, Jehovah had his prophet to write: "I well know, O Jehovah, that man’s way does not belong to him.
It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step."

How true it is that humans do not have the ability to successfully govern themselves without the Creator's guidance. Man is technologically more advanced than he ever has been. But the common problems of war, crime, famine, disease, old age and finally death continue to hound him. Only by means of God's Kingdom in the hands of his Son Jesus Christ can man hope to finally get free of what plagues him today.

But for that to be possible, people must be willing to admit that they cannot direct their lives successfully unless the heed the Bibles advice at Proverbs 3:5-7 which says: Trust in Jehovah with all your heart, And do not rely on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways take notice of him, And he will make your paths straight. 7 Do not become wise in your own eyes. Fear Jehovah and turn away from bad.

Some will read what Proverbs says and think they are being told to give up free will. That is not at all what God encourages. He is simply making it clear that if we as humans had the answers to life's big questions, we would have solved them by now. Why not listen to the one who can show us how to fix it? I mean, what have we got to loose?
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Mar, 2018 11:00 am
@anthony1312002,
God communicates through man. Not all men agree on how he is communicating. Only certain men were given the authority to determine the correct interputation of the message. I believe that authority was given to the bishops of the Roman Catholic Church by Jesus who is God. (Mat16:18). I also believe all man have the God-given right to interpret the Scriptures the way they want and will be judged according to their consciences.

But God is a God of order. He is the only truth and there is only one correct interpretation and he made sure that correct interpretation was maintained in the magisterium of the Catholic Church by the bishops.
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Sat 17 Mar, 2018 11:02 am
@brianjakub,
I hardly need the magisterium of the Catholic Church to believe with the Catholic Church teaches. To me it is logical and is revealed in nature by natural law and historical documentation and science.
0 Replies
 
anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Mon 19 Mar, 2018 08:28 am
@brianjakub,
I appreciate your comments as they do express a zeal and sincerity. Really, the criteria that determines those who have been given authority to determine the correct understanding of Scripture is that what is taught must agree completely with Scripture. It also would be something clearly explained in the texts themselves. Take for example the teaching of hell fire. Even leading ones within the Catholic Church disagree with this teaching.

The Jesuit journal La Civiltà Cattolica observed: “It is misleading . . . to think that God, by means of demons, inflicts fearful torments on the damned like that of fire.”[i/] It added: “Hell exists, not as a place but as a state, a way of being of the person who suffers the pain of the deprivation of God.”[i/] Pope John Paul II said in 1999: “Rather than a place, hell indicates the state of those who freely and definitively separate themselves from God, the source of all life and joy.”[i/] As to the images of hell as a fiery place, he said: “They show the complete frustration and emptiness of life without God.”[i/] Had the pope described hell in terms of “flames and a red-suited devil with a pitchfork,” church historian Martin Marty said, “people wouldn’t take it seriously.”

Clearly, even among leading voices in the Catholic Church, both present and past, there is discord over this. This does not reflect the spirit Jesus said would be evident among his true followers. He stated at John 17:11 “I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, watch over them on account of your own name, which you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are one[i/].

Yes, there would exist a complete unity among his true disciples. This is yet another criteria that helps determine who his true followers are today.
brianjakub
 
  1  
Reply Sun 25 Mar, 2018 04:37 pm
@anthony1312002,
Catchism of the Roman Catholic Church:
Quote:
IV. Hell

1033 We cannot be united with God unless we freely choose to love him. But we cannot love God if we sin gravely against him, against our neighbor or against ourselves: "He who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him."610 Our Lord warns us that we shall be separated from him if we fail to meet the serious needs of the poor and the little ones who are his brethren.611 To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God's merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called "hell."

1034 Jesus often speaks of "Gehenna" of "the unquenchable fire" reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost.612 Jesus solemnly proclaims that he "will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire,"613 and that he will pronounce the condemnation: "Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!"614

1035 The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, "eternal fire."615 The chief punishment of hell is eternal separation from God, in whom alone man can possess the life and happiness for which he was created and for which he longs.

1036 The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few."616

Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where "men will weep and gnash their teeth."617

1037 God predestines no one to go to hell;618 for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want "any to perish, but all to come to repentance":619

Father, accept this offering

from your whole family.

Grant us your peace in this life,

save us from final damnation,

and count us among those you have chosen.620
610 1 ⇒ Jn 3:14-15.
611 Cf. ⇒ Mt 25:31-46.
612 Cf. ⇒ Mt 5:22, ⇒ 29; ⇒ 10:28; ⇒ 13:42, ⇒ 50; ⇒ Mk 9:43-48.
613 ⇒ Mt 13:41-42.
614 ⇒ Mt 25:41.
615 Cf. DS 76; 409; 411; 801; 858; 1002; 1351; 1575; Paul VI, CPG # 12.
616 ⇒ Mt 7:13-14.
617 LG 48 # 3; ⇒ Mt 22:13; cf. ⇒ Heb 9:27; ⇒ Mt 25:13, ⇒ 26, ⇒ 30, ⇒ 31 ⇒ 46.
618 Cf. Council of Orange II (529): DS 397; Council of Trent
(1547):1567.
619 ⇒ 2 Pet 3:9.
620 Roman Missal, EP I (Roman Canon) 88.

If Roman Catholics disagree they can go to the catechism and related scripture. The catholic church translated and determined which scripture would be included in the bible (though I have read many translations and, except for the Jehovia's Witness version, they all say the same thing to me and support the catechism). I can't trace a Jehovia's Witness translation to the early church fathers, doctors, bishops or see any support for their views coming from any of the councils. The Roman Catholic church was the accepted authority until the protestant reformation.(Which caused a Roman Catholic house cleaning that was sorely needed and may be needed again, after the changes that snuck into the mass after Vatican II).

anthony1312002
 
  1  
Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2018 09:52 am
@brianjakub,
Hi brianjakub, I appreciate your thoughts but the fact that the Catholic church remains divided on this subject shows that this is not a fully accepted teaching among them. Partly due to the fact that they know the word Hell was never part of the original cannon but appeared toward the 2nd century. Well after the Bible was completed. This means that Jesus and his disciples never used this word.

The Greek name for the Valley of Hinnom, "Gehenna", southwest of ancient Jerusalem. (Jer 7:31) was prophetically spoken of as a place where dead bodies would be strewn. (Jer 7:32; 19:6) There is no evidence that animals or humans were thrown into Gehenna to be burned alive or tormented. So the place could not symbolize an invisible region where human souls are tormented eternally in literal fire. Rather, Gehenna was used by Jesus and his disciples to symbolize the eternal punishment of “second death,” that is, everlasting destruction, annihilation.​—Re 20:14; Mt 5:22; 10:28.

This is what Jehovah's Witnesses have long understood which is why no disagreement or confusion exists among them on this subject.
 

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