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Trinity Doctrine Undermines the Gospel

by Colin A. Gyles

The Trinity is held by popular professed Christianity to be the central doctrine of the Christian faith. This doctrine, though nominally embraced by most professed Christians, is widely considered to be a mystery. So mysterious is this doctrine that many of its adherents do not even venture to seek an understandable definition of the doctrine, much more to investigate or analyze its coherency or any implications that it might create for the overall perspective that is developed.

Webster's Dictionary defines the Trinity as follows: "(a) A threefold consubstantial personality existing in one divine being or substance. (b) The union of one God; of Father, Son and Holy Spirit as three infinite persons." A similar definition of the Trinity is given in the Practical Catholic Dictionary by Jessie Corrigan Pegis as follows: "One and the same God in three divine persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. There are three distinct persons who are one God.

"In accordance with the historical development of the Trinity doctrine and as indicated in the above definitions, the Trinity declares that there are three distinct persons who are of the same substance and constitute one being. This composite being is considered to be the God of the Christian faith. Pictorially, the Trinity has been represented as a composite head with three (3) faces or as three different heads that are joined in a single body. Another popular representation is an equilateral triangle wherein each of the three (3) equal sides represents a member of the Trinity.

The various representations attempt to depict an underlying concept of unity of substance, thus making the three personalities a single being rather than separate beings. This concept of unity of substance constitutes the primary basis on which the doctrine was formulated. The formulation of the Trinity doctrine arose out of a controversy early in the fourth (4") century AD between one Arius, a Presbyter in charge of the church at Baucalis in Alexandria, Egypt, and Alexander, the Bishop of Alexandria.

Arius proposed that Jesus Christ, the Son, was of like substance (Greek-Homoiousion) as the Father while Alexander contended that the Son was of the same substance (Greek Homoousion) as the Father. The resolution of the dispute was done by a council of 3 18 bishops called at Nicaea by the Roman Emperor Constantine in 325 AD, which resolution saw the condemnation and banishment of Arius and the acceptance of the idea that the Son is of the same substance as the Father.

The concept of identity of substance was later applied also to the Holy Spirit by Athanasius and a subsequent council held at Constantinople in 381 AD enjoined equal worship of the Holy Ghost with the Father and Son. It was also declared that the Son was begotten of the Father by an Eternal Generation, a continuous process that has neither beginning nor end, hence the Son is not separate from the Father, but together they constitute one being. The Roman Catholic Knights of Columbus declare: "The Christian belief is that the Christ of History is the Son of God, eternally begotten by one ceaseless action from the Father........." (Tell Us About God.... Who Is He? p. 30, The Knights of Columbus).

An examination of the issues which gave rise to the formulation of the doctrine of the Trinity indicate clearly that the doctrine was formulated based on intellectual speculation and not on divine revelation. Indeed the Bible is entirely silent on such questions as the substance of the Father and the pre-incarnate Son. Further, none of the apostles or prophets have even as much as alluded to any such thing as worship of the Holy Spirit or made any suggestion as to the nature of any process by which the Son was begotten. The Trinity is indeed a mystery, but far from being a divine mystery, it is a man-made mystery, and a mystery in the sense of being obscure and confusing.

NOT FROM THE APOSTLES

Roman Catholic officials are at least honest in admitting that the Trinity doctrine was not founded on the Scriptures, as declared: "Our opponents (Protestants) sometimes claim that no belief should be held dogmatically which is not explicitly stated in Scripture....... But the Protestant churches have themselves accepted such dogmas as the Trinity for which there is no such precise authority in the Gospels...." - Life Magazine, October 30, 1950.

It is rather significant that the various pictorial representations of the so-called Christian Trinity bear marked resemblance to depictions of pagan deities that have existed centuries before the founding of the Christian church and which had no counterpart in the Jewish religious experience. The reason for this is that popular professed Christianity has been built on the foundation of imperial Christianity of the Roman empire which was developed based on a mingling of Christianity with the former pagan experience of Gentile converts. This is evident in the Trinity concept, wherein essentially correct Biblical terminology such as "One God" and "Only Begotten Son" are used to provide a veneer for false, unscriptural, pagan ideas.

That Christianity which was of the apostolic flavour, did not feature in the prominent and populous cities of the Roman Empire or in any of the famous councils of the imperial church. The reason for this is to be found in a dire hatred that Roman authorities had developed for the Jews. One may recall that all the apostles were Jewish and the founding members of the Christian Church were Jewish. The Christian Jews constituted a sect called "Nazarenes" (The apostle Paul was referred to as a ringleader of the sect of the Nazarenes - Acts 24:5 on account of the fact that Jesus was a Nazarene, having been brought up in Nazareth - Matt. 2:23).

On account of the non-Christian Jews seeking to assert independence from the Roman authorities, Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans in AD 70. The Christian Jews escaped the scourge by fleeing to a city in Syria called Pella (one of the ten cities of what is called Decapolis, in the Bible).

Pella and Antioch (the place where the disciples were first called Christians - Acts 11:26), both in Syria, became the main headquarters of apostolic Christianity after the destruction of Jerusalem. This remained so until as late as AD 370. Of these Christian Jews (Nazarenes) the Encyclopedia Britannica states: "Nazarenes, an obscure Jewish-Christian sect, existing at the time of Epiphaneus (fl. A.D. 370) in Coele - Syria, Decapolis (Pella) and Basanitis (Cocabe). According to that authority, they dated their settlement in Pella from the time of the flight of the Jewish Christians from Jerusalem, immediately before the siege in A.D. 70; he characterizes them as neither more nor less than Jews pure and simple, but adds that they recognized the new covenant as well as the old, and believed in the resurrection, and in the one God and His Son Jesus Christ....Jerome (Ep. 79 to Augustine) says that they believed in Christ the Son of God, born of the Virgin Mary, who suffered under Pontius Pilate, and rose again, but adds that, ‘desiring to be both Jews and Christians, they are neither the one nor the other.' They used the Aramaic recension of the Gospel according to Matthew, which they called the Gospel to the Hebrews, but, while adhering as far as possible to the Mosaic economy as regarded....sabbaths, foods and the like, they did not refuse to recognize the apostolicity of Paul or the rights of (Gentile) Christians (Jer., Comn, in Isa. 9:1)". - The Encyclopedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, Vol. 19

For those who have read the Bible book of Acts, there should be very little difficulty in identifying the characteristics of the Nazarenes as described above with the apostolic church. It is noteworthy however, that Jerome's description reflected an attitude which had, by then, developed among Gentile professed Christians which sought to dissociate Christianity from any connection with the Jews.

Meanwhile, widespread rebellion of non-Christian Jews against the Romans in AD 135 once again occasioned the Romans under emperor Hadrian to plow Jerusalem under, change its name to Aelia and forbade the Gentile Christians to have a leader of Jewish descent ~(Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, b.3, Ch. 5 p. 138, found in Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers). Thus, by the time the Council of Nicaea was called, the Gentile Christians had largely distanced themselves from their Jewish brethren, allied themselves to the Roman Imperial authorities and capitulated to pagan customs, with which they were well familiar, in order to avoid being classified with the Jews. Thus, Christianity of the apostolic brand continued to exist in obscurity, being kept aloof from such philosophical bungling as the Trinity.

FUNDAMENTAL PROBLEM

The fundamental problem with the Trinity Doctrine in all its variations is that it denies or confuses the reality of Jesus Christ being the Son of God. This reality is the central truth that Christ commanded that His church should be built on (Matt. 16: 16-18). To remove or distort this truth and replace it with the pagan concept of a Trinity, as the central doctrine of Christianity can only undermine the true gospel of salvation and establish a false faith that does not commend itself to reason.

The gospel is a story which demonstrates the price of genuine and lasting peace. The honourable Chief Justice has reminded us that there can be no peace without justice. God could have destroyed the Devil before his rebellion and malicious lies against the Government of God are proven to be baseless, but the entire universe would cry: Foul! The seeds of distrust that were insinuated by the Devil (then called Lucifer), first in heaven among the angels and then in the hearts of our first parents (Adam and Eve) and their posterity may be rooted out only by due process of justice which must not only be done, but be manifestly and undoubtedly seen to be done.

The cost to God of allowing due process has been immeasurable, involving even the ignominious death of His only begotten Son. Jesus Christ, as a willing and obedient Son, being the express image of His Father's person (character) demonstrated on earth the Father's virtuous character and allowed the entire universe to see the Devil's malice toward God by enduring the Devil's venom even to the point of death. God himself being the ultimate source and sustainer of all things could not have condescended in such a manner and die, otherwise the universe would collapse and cease to exist. Of the Father, the Scriptures declare: "who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords; who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see". 1 Tim. 6:15, 16. "But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things......" 1 Cor. 8:6

Though the Father Himself could not die, nevertheless, through His divine power, His only begotten, beloved Son could be manifested in a form whereby He could die and did die. One cannot begin to imagine what must have occurred in the heart of God, the loving Father, who loves far greater than any other being, when he saw the agony of His Son - His only begotten Son, as Jesus, in the frailty of human flesh, cried "My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?" Matt. 27. 46. Such has been the cost of securing lasting peace for the entire universe. The argument of Calvary is profound. It shows:

1. The enormity of sin - that sin ultimately engenders the destruction of all that is good.

2. The matchless love of a Holy God, even for a race of rebels; notwithstanding the fact that the rejectors of His grace will be called to account for the death of His Son.

In explaining his mission, Jesus declared "I proceeded forth and came from the Father; neither came I of myself, but He sent me." John 8: 42. Having fulfilled the will of His Father, Jesus Christ has been even more endeared to His Father. Jesus said: "Therefore doth my Father love me, because 1 lay down my life, that I might take it again." John 10:17. Accordingly, God has not only raised him from the dead (Acts 5:30, 31) and has "highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name" (Phil. 2: 9), but has "committed all judgement unto the Son: That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father." John 5:22, 23

The gospel is intended to open to the world the irrefutable evidence of divine love, patience, selflessness and justice. However, through such distortions as the Trinity doctrine the Devil seeks to obscure the truth. Nevertheless, we are assured that "this gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." Matt. 24: 14. But first, the gospel will be cleared of all distortions so that it will shine with unshadowed brilliance and clarity, showing that sin is without excuse, thus preventing any recurrence of evil, once an end has been put to it.

Restoration Ministries

Restoration Ministries is dedicated to the promotion of the truths contained in the word of God. In particular to the restoration of those truths which have been cast down to the ground and trampled underfoot by the papacy, and adopted by her daughters.

Our purpose is to motivate men and women to commit themselves wholly to the task of personal preparation for the coming of the Lord, and to the taking of the final warning message to every nation, kindred, tongue and people.

Website: www.restorationministry.com

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