A Father Who begat a son

Documents of the Christian Church 2nd Ed 1963 Henery Bettenson
(quotes from Arius and his followers)

“If, said he, the Father begat the Son, he that was begotten had a beginning of existence; hence it is clear that there was a [a time] when the son was not.”
“The Son of God is from what is not and there was [a time] when he was not; saying also that the Son of God, in virtue of his free will, is capable of evil and good, and calling him a creature and a work.”

The Rise of Christianity 1985 W.H.C. Frend

“If the Father begat the son, there must be when he was not. He could not therefore be coeternal with the Father.”[said by Arius]

Man’s Religions 1968 John B. Noss

Arius held that Christ, . . . was a created being; he was made like other creatures out of nothing, . . . The Son, he argued, had a beginning, while God was without beginning.”

The Church in History 1964 B. K. Kuiper

Arius püspök.jpg

The Christian priest of Alexandria, Egypt, Arius arguing for the supremacy of God the Father, and that the Son had a beginning as a true Firstborn

“The heathen believe in many gods. Arius thought that to believe that the Son is God as well as that the Father is God would mean that there are two Gods, and that therefore the Christians would be falling back into heathenism.”
Arius believed that Jesus Christ was born, that he had a beginning, he believed that Jesus Christ was the created Son, not the Creator, and for taking the Word of God literally he was excommunicated and anathematised. Starting with Nimrod in ancient Babylon until today man has stubbornly rebelled against the doctrine of one God.

Exodus 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

Exodus 34:14a For thou shalt worship no other god:

The trinity is idolatry, it puts Jesus Christ as a god before God.

Forgers of the Word 1983 Victor Paul Wierwille

“To say Jesus Christ is God the Son is idolatry. To say Jesus is the Son of God is truth.”

Forgers of the Word 1983 Victor Paul Wierwille

“To say Jesus Christ is God the Son is idolatry. To say Jesus is the Son of God is truth.”

Man’s Religions John B. Noss 1968

“The doctrine of the trinity he [Michael Servetus] felt to be a Catholic perversion and himself to be a good New Testament Christian in combating it. . . According to his conception, a trinity composed of three distinct persons in one God is a rational impossibility;”

Saying that Jesus Christ is not God does not degrade Jesus Christ it merely sets things in their proper order so we can know God and worship Him in spirit and truth.

We can no longer be lulled to sleep by the bizarre, complex, confusing, ritualistic, mysterious Babylonian traditions of trinitarian doctrines. We must come back to God’s Word and worship the one true God- the Holy Father of Jesus Christ.

Andrey Davidson

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Preceding articles

People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations

People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions

People Seeking for God 4 Biblical terms

Christianity without the Trinity

Being Religious and Spiritual 5 Gnostic influences

Roman, Aztec and other rites still influencing us today

Application of old pagan concept of trinity

The imaginational war against Christmas

Entrance of a king to question our position #1 Coming in the Name of the Lord

Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be

Joseph Priestley To the Point

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Additional articles

  1. Blindness in the Christian world
  2. Vision blurred by cumulative burden of divisions
  3. Does there have to be a Holy Trinity Mystery
  4. Finding and Understanding Words and Meanings
  5. Creator and Blogger God 7 A Blog of a Book 1 Believing the Blogger
  6. Genesis 1:26 God said “Let us make”
  7. Have no other gods besides Me
  8. Written and translated by different men over thousands of years
  9. A god who gave his people commandments and laws he knew they never could keep to it
  10. For those who believe Jesus is God
  11. For Getting to know Jesus
  12. Objects around the birth and death of Jesus
  13. The Son can do nothing of his own accord
  14. Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:13-17 – Jesus Declared God’s Son at His Baptism
  15. Nazarene Commentary Matthew 4:5-7 – A Temptation to Test God
  16. God son king and his subjects
  17. Authority given to him To give eternal life
  18. Americans really thinking the Messiah Christ had an English name
  19. Focussing on the man Jesus and the relationship with God
  20. It happened on May 2 295
  21. 1691 years ago on June the 20th in 325
  22. A Triple God or simply a rather simple One God
  23. Problems correspondents have with the Trinity Doctrine
  24. 19° century London and Unitarians
  25. Afraid to see the man of the heavens opened
  26. Minimizing the power of God’s Force the Holy Spirit
  27. Jewish and Christian traditions of elders
  28. Renewed Catholic-Jewish relations still with a blemish
  29. Immanuel looking at Jewish and Christian visions
  30. Do you purpose that your mouth will not transgress
  31. Solstice, Saturnalia and Christmas-stress
  32. Responses to Radical Muslims and Radical Christians
  33. What is the truth asked also Pontius Pilate
  34. In Defense of the truth
  35. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 4
  36. More Mexicans start questioning Catholic doctrine and the concept of the Trinity
  37. President of the Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations considers of undoing the Unitarian idea

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Related articles

  1. Jesus’ Incarnation: Created or Divine?
  2. Phil Pringle peddles Word of Faith & Arian heresy: “God spoke Christ into creation before anything else”
  3. Ignatius and Submission According to the Flesh
  4. Mini Episode 3: The Nicene Creed
  5. #341 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Presbyter Of Alexandria
  6. #342 – A History Catholic of the Catholic Church – The First Ecumenical Council
  7. #343 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Nicene Creed
  8. #351 – A History of the Catholic Church – Nicenes and Eusebians
  9. #352 – A History of the Catholic Church – Anathematizations and Glorifications
  10. Today in Church History: May 20
  11. Konsili Nicea: Yesus Diangkat Menjadi Tuhan
  12. Athanasius and the dodgy worship leader
  13. Celebrate Christmas If You A Real G
  14. Episode 5: Arius
  15. Ep10: Is Jesus Fully Man?
  16. Vision of Peter of Alexandria
  17. Patriarchy Preachers Teach that Jesus Is a Lesser God
  18. Embrace the Mystery: Does all of theology “make sense”
  19. Heresies – Arianism
  20. Does It Really Matter What We Believe?
  21. The Fullness of Time
  22. Sectarianism in the church
  23. TDISH: Scientist and Heretic
  24. Servetus, Socinus and Sola Scriptura
  25. Punching Above His Weight
  26. Feast of Sebastian Castellio (March 20)

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Good Morning January 25 We are theologians

The world has gone far away from the real study of gods and God, forgetting that the Word of God should be the main guide.

Lots of theologians teaching at colleges and universities have fallen into heresy and other substantial errors on doctrine, having been themselves already formed on the false doctrine of the trinity.

It would be lovely if we could find more theologians who really desire to know the Most High Theos or the Elohim Hashem Jehovah. For them as for all of us this demands works of faith, learning more about Jehovah God, and walking with Him through all the activities of daily life.

As Pastor Irvin Stapf of the Life’s Meaning Ministry correctly notes that

“In this way all Christians are to be theologians”

all those who say they are a Christian should believe in Christ Jesus and follow his teachings. Like Jesus, who did not do his own will, they should do everything to please God.

We too should be as Jeshua’s disciples getting to know Jesus better, following him as the Way to God. It is our faith in him that also should motivate us enough to come to know the heavenly Father of Christ and to do like Christ, doing God’s Will and not ours. Reading the Scriptures and giving ourselves to God shall bring us closer to God and create better relationships between God’s creatures.

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To remember

  • lessons = not always easy
  • many of the circumstances we face in life = tools in God’s gracious hands
  • fruit of the Spirit = nature of Jesus + what God is working to form in us
  • God doesn’t do away with our personality + individuality, => works Christ’s nature into these so that we may be useful to Him and to others.

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Preceding articles:

Mental Enslavement and Sins Syndrome (MESS)

Luther on Being a Theologian: Oratio, Meditatio and Tentatio

The Pastor Theologian

Theology as Discipleship

What Makes a Theologian

 

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Additional reading

  1. Jehovah steep rock and fortress, source of insight
  2. Necessary to be known all over the earth
  3. Bible a guide – Bijbel als gids
  4. A voice and a Word given for wisdom
  5. the Bible – God’s guide for life #2 Needs in life
  6. the Bible – God’s guide for life #3 Fast food or staple diet
  7. the Bible – God’s guide for life #5 What is God like
  8. Counterfeit Gospels
  9. Al-Fatiha [The Opening] Süra 1: 4-7 Merciful Lord of the Creation to show us the right path
  10. To create a great journey
  11. Colour-blindness and road code
  12. We should use the Bible every day
  13. Feed Your Faith Daily
  14. Bric-a-brac of the Bible
  15. What Are You Seeking?
  16. Hang On!
  17. Whoopi Goldberg commandments and abortion
  18. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 4
  19. To know Christ is filling life with meaning
  20. Best intimate relation to look for
  21. God’s wisdom for the believer brings peace

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Life's Meaning Ministry's Blog

Thinking about words. We hear the word theologian and we think of someone teaching in a seminary, or writing many scholarly books. This is true. There certainly are such people who have been of great benefit to the church. But look at the word theologian again. The first part theos means God, ology is simply the study of. A theologian is one who studies the nature of God. I consider myself a theologian, but I’m not a well read scholar. I am a parish pastor and a wood worker. You, also, are called to be a theologian, one who seeks to understand more and more about the God we worship, the God who has revealed Himself in the person of Jesus Christ.
As theologians we desire to know our Lord, learning more about Him, and walking with Him through all the activities of daily life. In this way all Christians…

View original post 49 more words

Roman, Aztec and other rites still influencing us today

Days shortening and darkness coming over us

When we look at the weather we would not have the impression we are coming to the coldest season of the year. We can not ignore the shorter days, which remind us that we are coming closer to the longest darkness of the year.

That darkness has always frightened people and therefore they looked for ways to get more light again.

Saturnalia, a Roman feast celebrated in mid-December, provided the model for many of the merry-making customs we know now as ‘The time of the Year‘ or ‘Christmas‘. From this celebration, for example, were derived the elaborate feasting, the giving of gifts, and the burning of candles.

Seasons, storms, thunder, darkness and light

In other cultures we also find that many centuries before Jesus was born they celebrated the ‘birth of light‘. The Roman Catholic Church was not shy to take over many traditions from heathen people who celebrated such elements as the ‘turn’ of the position of moon and sun and the change of season. Even the Israelites came to feast such natural elements as the four teḳufot (Teḳufat Nisan, Teḳufat Tammuz, Teḳufat Tishri and the Teḳufat Ṭebet) by which also superstition became connected with the teḳufot. Hai Gaon, in the tenth century, in reply to a question as to the prevalence of the custom in the “West” (i.e., west of Babylon) that all water that may be in the house or stored away in vessels in the first hour of the teḳufah had to be thrown away in the belief that the water is then poisoned, and if drunk would cause swelling of the body, sickness, and sometimes death, said it was followed only in order that the new season might be begun with a supply of fresh, sweet water.

Jupiter Smyrna Louvre Ma13.jpg

Zeus, god of the sky, lightning, thunder, law, order, justice – The Jupiter de Smyrne, discovered in Smyrna in 1680

When the sun enters Capricornus; this is the beginning of winter, or “‘et ha-ḥoref”(stripping-time), when the night is the longest during the year.For several people it was the time something had to be stripped down or some things that happened in the past had to be done with. The bad things had to be forgotten or to ‘be over with’ and new paths could be taken again. It was the time of a ‘turn over’ or a rebirth. People looked forward to the rebirth of the sun and hoped that everything would go well. For that reason they offered the rest of their food to the gods of nature which had to bear them fruits and good weather, not making the god of thunder (sky and thunder god Zeus) angry by forgetting him or to have bad spirits around, lots of noise was made to get them away from the own house.

Also in Latin America we can find such very noisy parties. For many people the darker nights were there for getting the ‘good’ and ‘goods’ together. All badness had to be down away. On the 24th of December it was the big moment to look for the next day when the goddess of light would return in case they all showed the goodness and willingness to her.

From December 16 through December 23 in Latin America eight posada parties are held and on the 24th, Nochebuena (The Good Night)(Christmas Eve) is celebrated, and families make an effort to be together for a special dinner. Also in West Europe this custom of a Christmas meal has been long a favourite moment.

Roman influences

Statue of three figures, seated side by side

Capitoline Triad – the three godheads side by side transposed in the Roman catholic church and shims of that church to the Trinity, being a God the Father, god the son, and a god the holy spirit.

Constantine the Great had managed to got the church leaders to agree to many of his demands so that the Christians would not any more be persecuted. For that reason they had to agree to the three-headed Roman god and Jeshua could become the ‘counterpart’ or ‘alias’ for Zeus with his name calling ‘hail Zeus‘ or ‘Issou‘ ‘Jesus‘. And they had to keep to the Roman festivals and as such should place their Christian Zeus (Jesus) his birth on the same major feast for the ‘light’ in the Roman world. As such rabbi Jeshua became Jesus , and his birth day became the 25th of December instead of October 17. Constantine insisted that the mighty king of the gods (Jupiter) or the Roman god of the sky, thunderstorms, lightning, weather and air got honoured on his day (December 25).

But it were not only Roman customs which entered Christendom.

Aztec influences

Latin Americans should come to see that American Christmas customs are nothing but Aztec rites. El Universal, a newspaper in Mexico City, commented:

“Friars from different orders took advantage of the fact that festivities of the Indian ritual calendar coincided with the Catholic liturgical calendar, so they used this to support their evangelizing and missionary work. They replaced the commemorations to the pre-Hispanic divinities with festivities to Christian divinities, introduced European festivities and activities, and also took advantage of the Indian festivities, which resulted in a cultural syncretism from which authentically Mexican expressions have arisen.”

The Encyclopedia Americana explains:

Nativity plays early became a part of the Christmas celebration . . . The representation in church of the crèche [the manger scene] is said to have been begun by Saint Francis.”

These plays featuring the birth of Christ were performed in the churches during the beginning of the colonization of Mexico. They were organized by Franciscan monks in order to teach the Indians about the Nativity. Later the posadas became more popular. Whatever the original intention behind them, the way the posadas are held today speaks for itself. If you are in Mexico during this season, you can see or sense something that a writer for El Universal highlighted in his comment:

“The posadas, which were a way to remind us of the pilgrimage of Jesus’ parents looking for a shelter where the Child God could be born, are today only days of drunkenness, excesses, gluttony, vanities, and more and more crime.”

Traditional Nativity scenes

The idea of the nacimiento emerged during Colonial times from the original live representations in churches. While some find it attractive, does it correctly represent what the Bible says?
That is a valid question.

When the so-called three wise men — who in fact were astrologers — visited, Jesus and his family were no longer living in a stable. Time had passed, and the family was living in a house. You will find it interesting to note this detail in the inspired record at Matthew 2:1, 11. You can also note that the Bible does not say how many astrologers there were.

After Jesus had been born in Bethʹle·hem+ of Ju·deʹa in the days of Herod*+ the king, look! astrologers* from the East came to Jerusalem, saying: “Where is the one born king of the Jews?+ For we saw his star when we were in the East, and we have come to do obeisance* to him.” …  10 On seeing the star, they rejoiced with great joy. 11 And when they went into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and falling down, they did obeisance* to him. They also opened their treasures and presented him with gifts—gold and frankincense and myrrh. (Matthew 2:1-2,10-11)

Another detail should not be ignored: In the Mexican nacimiento, the baby is referred to as “the Child God” with the idea that it was God himself who came to earth as a baby. However, the Bible presents Jesus as being the Son of God who was born on earth; he was not the same as or equal to Jehovah, the Almighty God. Consider the truth about this, presented at Luke 1:35; John 3:16; 5:37; 14:1, 6, 9, 28; 17:1, 3; 20:17.

35 In answer the angel said to her: “Holy spirit will come upon you,+ and power of the Most High will overshadow you. And for that reason the one who is born will be called holy,+ God’s Son.+ (Luke 1:35)

16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only-begotten Son,+ so that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life.+ 17 For God did not send his Son into the world for him to judge the world, but for the world to be saved through him.+ 18 Whoever exercises faith in him is not to be judged.+ Whoever does not exercise faith has been judged already, because he has not exercised faith in the name of the only-begotten Son of God.+ (John 3:16-18)

Three wise men, Santa and birthday celebrations

In Latin America, the three wise men replace the idea of Santa Claus. Still, as is done in other lands, many parents hide toys in the home. Then on the morning of January 6, the children look for them, as if the three wise men brought them. This is a money-making time for toy sellers, and some have made a fortune on what many honesthearted people recognize is just a fantasy. The myth of the three wise men is losing credibility among a goodly number, even among little children. Though some are displeased that this myth is losing believers, what can anyone expect of a fantasy maintained only for the sake of tradition and for commercial convenience?

Christmas, or the Nativity, was not celebrated by early Christians. One encyclopedia says about this:

“The celebration was not observed in the first centuries of the Christian church, since the Christian usage in general was to celebrate the death of remarkable persons rather than their birth.”

The Bible links the celebration of birthdays with pagans, not with God’s true worshippers.

But when Herod’s birthday+ was being celebrated, the daughter of He·roʹdi·as danced for the occasion and pleased Herod so much+ that he promised with an oath to give her whatever she asked. Then she, at her mother’s prompting, said: “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.”+ Grieved though he was, the king, out of regard for his oaths and for those dining* with him, commanded it to be given. 10 So he sent and had John beheaded in the prison. (Matthew 14:6-10).

This does not, of course, mean that it is not beneficial to learn and remember the actual events involved in the birth of the Son of God. The factual Bible account provides important insights and lessons for all those who want to do God’s will.

Birth of Jesus According to the Bible

You will find reliable information about Jesus’ birth in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke. They show that the angel Gabriel visited a young unmarried woman by the name of Mary in the Galilean town of Nazareth. What message did he deliver?

“Look! you will conceive in your womb and give birth to a son, and you are to call his name Jesus. This one will be great and will be called Son of the Most High; and Jehovah God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule as king over the house of Jacob forever, and there will be no end of his kingdom.” (Luke 1:31-33.)

Mary was very surprised by this message. Not being married, she said:

“How is this to be, since I am having no intercourse with a man?” The angel answered: “Holy spirit will come upon you, and power of the Most High will overshadow you. For that reason also what is born will be called holy, God’s Son.” Mary, recognizing that this was the will of God, said: “Look! Jehovah’s slave girl! May it take place with me according to your declaration.” (Luke 1:34-38).

An angel told Joseph about the miraculous birth so that he would not divorce Mary, which he was planning to do after he learned of her pregnancy. He was then willing to assume the responsibility of taking care of the Son of God. (Matthew 1:18-25).

Then a decree from Caesar Augustus forced Joseph and Mary to travel from Nazareth in Galilee to Bethlehem in Judea, the city of their forefathers, to be registered.

“While they were there, the days came to the full for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her son, the firstborn, and she bound him with cloth bands and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the lodging room.” (Luke 2:1-7).

Luke 2:8-14 describes what followed:

“There were also in that same country shepherds living out of doors and keeping watches in the night over their flocks. And suddenly Jehovah’s angel stood by them, and Jehovah’s glory gleamed around them, and they became very fearful. But the angel said to them: ‘Have no fear, for, look! I am declaring to you good news of a great joy that all the people will have, because there was born to you today a Saviour, who is Christ the Lord, in David’s city. And this is a sign for you: you will find an infant bound in cloth bands and lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there came to be with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army, praising God and saying: ‘Glory in the heights above to God, and upon earth peace among men of goodwill.’”

The Astrologers

Matthew’s account mentions that astrologers from the East came to Jerusalem looking for the place where the King of the Jews was born. King Herod was very interested in this — but not with good intentions.

“Sending them to Bethlehem,

he said:

‘Go make a careful search for the young child, and when you have found it report back to me, that I too may go and do it obeisance.’”

The astrologers found the young child and

“opened their treasures and presented it with gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.”

But they did not go back to Herod.

“They were given divine warning in a dream not to return to Herod.”

God used an angel to warn Joseph of Herod’s intentions. Joseph and Mary then fled to Egypt with their son. Next, in an effort to eliminate the new King, cruel King Herod ordered the killing of boys in the Bethlehem area. Which boys? Those two years of age and under. (Matthew 2:1-16).

What Can We Learn From the Account?

The visiting astrologers — however many of them there were — did not worship the true God. The Bible version La Nueva Biblia Latinoamérica (1989 Edition) states in a footnote:

“The Magi were not kings, but fortune-tellers and priests of a pagan religion.”

They came in line with their knowledge of the stars to which they were devoted. Had God wanted to guide them to the young child, they would have been led to the exact place without needing to go first to Jerusalem and to Herod’s palace. Later on, God did intervene to alter their course to protect the child.

At Christmastime this account is often surrounded by a mythical and romantic atmosphere that obscures the most important thing: that this baby was born to be a magnificent King, as was announced to Mary and to the shepherds. No, Jesus Christ is not a baby anymore, or even a child. He is the ruling King of God’s Kingdom, which very soon will eliminate all rulerships opposed to God’s will, and he will solve all problems of mankind. That is the Kingdom we ask for in the Lord’s Prayer.

44 “In the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom+ that will never be destroyed.+ And this kingdom will not be passed on to any other people.+ It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms,+ and it alone will stand forever,+ (Daniel 2:44)

“You must pray, then, this way:+

“‘Our Father in the heavens, let your name+ be sanctified.*+ 10 Let your Kingdom+ come. Let your will+ take place, as in heaven, also on earth.+ (Matthew 6:9, 10).

Through the angels’ declaration to the shepherds, we learn that the opportunity for salvation is open to all who are willing to hear the message of the good news. Those who gain the favour of God become “men of goodwill.”
There are marvellous prospects for peace in all the world under the Kingdom of Jesus Christ, but people must be willing to do God’s will. Is the Christmas season conducive to this, and does it reflect that desire?
Many sincere people who want to follow the Bible feel that the answer is obvious.

10 But the angel said to them: “Do not be afraid, for look! I am declaring to you good news of a great joy that all the people will have. 11 For today there was born to you in David’s city+ a savior,+ who is Christ the Lord.+ 12 And this is a sign for you: You will find an infant wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a manger.” 13 Suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly army,+ praising God and saying: 14 “Glory in the heights above to God, and on earth peace among men of goodwill.”* (Luke 2:10, 11, 14).

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Preceding articles:

Irminsul, dies natalis solis invicti, birthday of light, Christmas and Saturnalia

Winter Solstice 2015: Shortest Day Of The Year Celebrated As Pagan Yule

Holidays, holy days and traditions

Focus on outward appearances

Autumn traditions for 2014 – 1: Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet

Traditionalists Vow to Fight Charges of Racism in Netherlands

The imaginational war against Christmas

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Additional reading

  1. Altered to fit a Trinity
  2. Americans really thinking the Messiah Christ had an English name
  3. Spelling Yahshuah (יהשע) vs Hebrew using Yehoshuah (יהושע)
  4. First month of the year and predictions
  5. Hosea Say What?
  6. Matthew 1:18-25 – Genesis of Jesus Christ
  7. Matthew 2:1-6 – Astrologers and Priests in a Satanic Plot
  8. Matthew 2:7-12 – Pawns of Herod, the Magi Find the ‘Child’
  9. Matthew 2:13-15 – Escaping the Slaughter by a Flight to Egypt
  10. Matthew 2:16-18 – Slaughter of the Innocents
  11. Matthew 2:19-23 – Out of Egypt to Nazareth
  12. Nazarene Commentary Luke 1:26-38 – Gabriel’s Appearance to Mary
  13. Nazarene Commentary Luke 2:39-40 – The Young Child Grows
  14. Nazarene Commentary Luke 2:41-50 – Twelve Year Old Jesus in the Temple
  15. Truth, doubt or blindness
  16. Getting out of the dark corners of this world
  17. The place where Jesus was brought up
  18. A Living Faith #7 Prayer

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Further reading

  1. Is Santa Real, Or Is He Really You, Dad?
  2. “Islam may have bad stuff. But …” – What of the other Bronze Age Invented Gods?
  3. Did Electricity kill Religion?
  4. Should we forgo happiness here for the sake of happiness hereafter?
  5. Life Comes in Threes
  6. The three gifts
  7. Wassail Ancient holiday tradition that involves drinking, singing, and making introverts nervous.
  8. A Christmas Wish
  9. America’s First “War on Christmas”
  10. A Breath of Fresh Air
  11. Lapland baby #blogmas day 19
  12. Snowflake Tea Light Cozy
  13. Christmas: The Giver’s Feast
  14. O Christmas Tree!
  15. Christmas Music Matters: I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
  16. Preparing for Christmas
  17. Living in the Moment
  18. Jesus is the True and Better David (6/12)
  19. Last Minute Gift Idea
  20. Christmas Tree Farm
  21. A Christmas round up
  22. Mr. Santa’s Boogie
  23. 7 Events Which Turned Our Christmas Upside Down
  24. Jane Austen and old friends to the rescue
  25. 7th and 6th day of Christmas! !
  26. Once Upon a Holiday

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Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims and Muslims do not understand Christians?

A Catholic girl denouncing Christians

On WordPress can be found an article with the title: Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims? by a Roman Catholic convert to Islam, who now has found the need to inform others that don’t know about Islam: the true message of the religion. From what the media has to say nowadays, it’s quite a shame to see the wrong ideas people have about Islam. but this girl seems also to keep promoting the wrong ideas many do have about Christendom or Christianity.

The writer of the article has been raised in a Latin culture, which explains a lot about her previous heathen uses and pagan rituals she had in her church. She says she had never been exposed to Islam ever, and I wonder if she ever has been exposed to other forms of Christendom or strangely enough did not get to know other Christian communities which keep to the Biblical faith.

Convert to Islam

Not sharing the belief any-more

In her article it is made clear that even many who converted from Christendom (mostly Catholics) to Islam, did never undertook a search in Christianity where they could find lots of Christians who only adhere One God and do not accept a Trinity.
Most Muslims do have a misunderstanding of Christians because they only see those Trinitarian Christians and do not get enough contacts with non-trinitarian Christians. shame to find an ex-Christian not confirming to her Muslim brothers and sisters that there are many Christians who are not liked by the Trinitarian Christians, because they only want to worship One Holy God of gods, Allah, the Elohim Most High Almighty Merciful Hashem Jehovah.

Wrong picture

As such we can find many Muslims who give like many Christians a wrong picture of Christianity:  presenting that “The first point of interest is that Christians believe in a trinity.” This author, being an ex-Catholic may be raised up, like many, to believe that God is not one – all Supreme, all Knowing – but that He would be composed of three “sections” that form Him as one.  Each Christian has the Bible, which speaks clearly and can give enough inside in “Who is who”. The only matter is the persons have to investigate themselves, and that is what we do not see to happen much.

Decision of a Fatwa committee on the case of a...

Decision of a Fatwa committee on the case of a convert to Christianity: “Since he left Islam, he will be invited to revert. If he does not revert, he will be killed pertaining to rights and obligations of the Islamic law.” The fatwa outlines the same procedure and penalty for the male convert’s children, on reaching the age of puberty. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

She wrote:

A year ago I was a Catholic and I currently live in a community where everyone is mainly Catholic. Catholics, like any other Christian branch believe in a few points that blind them from the truth of Islam. This creates a shield between them and the religion.

Where I’m from you are simply a Catholic and that’s it. If you dare venture out of the religion you are automatically tagged as a betrayer and mocked upon. I saw this with some family members that have left the roman Catholic church and decided to follow other Christian churches. They were laughed at and even called fanatics.

It might well be that the one who dares “venture out of the religion” is automatically tagged as a betrayer and mocked upon, this we can find in many religions, like in Hinduism and in Islam as well, where even people have to fear for their life when they took on an other religion.

Converting to another branch of Christianity

She adds:

When you are raised into a community where everyone follows their father’s religion without questioning it’s rather difficult for people not to judge you if you convert to another branch of Christianity, like my brother did. It’s even worse when you revert to Islam.

Normally at a certain age each infant starts questioning the teachings of its parents and of its teachers. I wonder how it came to be that in the transition to adulthood this girl did not question her parents, priests and people around her about her religion and about her faith. Wwhat did she believed or wanted to believe from childhood onwards and how did she work around it?
When her brother did find an other church where he felt at ease, did he not share those ideas of that church with her sister. I presume he stayed in a trinitarian church of Christendom, and wonder how he made his decisions to change church-community.

Human instructions and teachings people follow

Instruction to examine

She herself admits she did not follow the Torah or Bible instructions, which say the same as the Quran, not to follow human (parents/teachers) instructions about ‘belief’, without examining them:

In the Qur’an it tells us:

And when it is said to them, “Follow what Allah has revealed,” they say, “Rather, we will follow that which we found our fathers doing.” Even though their fathers understood nothing, nor were they guided? (2: 170)

Allah (subhana wa’ tala) mentions those that follow their generation’s religion and ignore the truth.

and the problem is that we see that in every religion, also in Islam, where many people do not prefer to follow the Quran, but give more attention to the Hadith, a report of the teachings, deeds and sayings of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, according to traditions, and other writings by human beings. she must remember and know that the Hadith also had a profound and controversial influence on molding the commentaries (tafsir) on the Quran. As such it is common knowledge that the earliest commentary of the Quran by Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari is mostly sourced from the hadith.

Islamic teachers

In Islam there is even less basics on the Quran writings than in many Christian denominations where the individual theologians are taken to be just as people who study the Bible professionally, but have not an overall everything saying power. In many Muslim groups those theological imams are given the power to say it all. Like we have different schools in Christendom, we can find also many madhhab or Islamic Schools of Law: evolution, devolution, and progress in the Islamic world. to give a few examples: Awza’i, Thawri, al-Fazarl, Malik, madrasah,Al-Ghazzali, plus having lots of writings out of the regular Quran, like: al-Risala al-qudsiyya fi qawa’id al-‘aqa’id (“The Jerusalem Epistle”), al-Arba’in fi usul al-din (“Forty Points on Islamic Orthodoxy”, al-Iqtisad fil-i’tiqad (“The Golden Mean in Belief’), Faysal al-tafriqa baynal-Islam wal-zandaqa (“The Criterion of Distinction between Islam and Clandestine Unbelief” al-Maqsad al-asna fi sharh asma’ Allah al-husna (“The Brilliant Aim of Explaining Allah’s Beautiful Names”) and Iljam al-‘awam ‘an ‘ilm al-kalam (“Saving Muslims from Scholastic Theology”).

Islam by the passing time has undergone the same dangerous introduction of human teachings which have received more attention by its followers than the original Holy Scripture, in this instance the Quran which also refers that the faithfull to God have to read the Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the Tanakh (Jewish canon) and the Greek canon or New Testament.

Holy Scriptures should be the main Source and Guide

She continues:

Even in Muslim countries there are those that follow the religion without truly believing and being a devote Muslim.

which does not make it clear if she understands that reading the Holy Scriptures should be the main source of building up the faith. but she mention a general problem of all times that we can find in all religions people who say they are part of such a religion and who follow lots of traditional rites in that religion, but who are not real believers.

What is said in the Quran about disbelievers is also to concer for atheists, Jews, Christians as well as Muslims:

It says in the Qur’an:

Indeed, those who disbelieve – it is all the same for them whether you warn them or do not warn them – they will not believe. (2:6)

From the Bible we should know it says the same as in those older books:

“in whom the god of this {1} world hath blinded the {2} minds of the unbelieving, {3} that the {4} light of the {5} gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should not dawn [upon them]. {1) Or [age] 2) Gr [thoughts] 3) Or [that they should not see the light…image of God] 4) Gr [illumination] 5) See marginal note on 2 Co 2:12}” (2 Corinthians 4:4 ASV)

“14 Be not unequally yoked with unbelievers: for what fellowship have righteousness and iniquity? or what communion hath light with darkness? 15 And what concord hath Christ with {1} Belial? or what portion hath a believer with an unbeliever? {1) Gr [Beliar]}” (2 Corinthians 6:14-15 ASV)

“but brother goeth to law with brother, and that before unbelievers?” (1 Corinthians 6:6 ASV)

“Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to the unbelieving: but prophesying [is for a sign], not to the unbelieving, but to them that believe.” (1 Corinthians 14:22 ASV)

“And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages teaching.” (Mark 6:6 ASV)

“yet, looking unto the promise of God, he wavered not through unbelief, but waxed strong through faith, giving glory to God,” (Romans 4:20 ASV)

“Well; by their unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by thy faith. Be not highminded, but fear:” (Romans 11:20 ASV)

“And we see that they were not able to enter in because of unbelief.” (Hebrews 3:19 ASV)

“And he did not many {1} mighty works there because of their unbelief. {1) Gr [powers]}” (Matthew 13:58 ASV)

“For what if some were without faith? shall their want of faith make of none effect the faithfulness of God?” (Romans 3:3 ASV)

“And they also, if they continue not in their unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again.” (Romans 11:23 ASV)

“though I was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: howbeit I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief;” (1 Timothy 1:13 ASV)

Demand to open up the mind in willingness to receive faith

The Word of God is clear a believer has to open his mind and be willing to come to belief and to the right faith. In the world there are lots of people who, like told in the Holy Scriptures, do all that is possible to oppose the name of Jesus of Nazareth and to work against those who believe in the Most High God Jehovah.

Endpoint of a Christians’ acceptance of the unity of God

The author of the spoken of article does still finds that the

trinity is truly the endpoint of a Christians’ acceptance of the unity of God and believing that God is One (tawheed). Although Christians state that they believe in one God only, they are actually denying this since they have the belief in the trinity and associating  another with Allah (swt).

With such a statement for her Muslim brothers and sisters, she does injustice to the many Christians who do not believe in the false teaching of the trinity, and continues to create false ideas about Christians by Muslims.

Incarnation by Christians, Jews, Persians and Hindus

Even worse she wants them to give the impression that even other faith-groups have such contorted ideas:

The reason behind this is that Christians also believe in that Jesus (peace be upon him) was God incarnate on this Earth. Christians believe that Allah (swt) came down on Earth in the form of a man, as well as Jews, Persians and Hindus believe in that God has taken Himself into some human or animal form here on Earth. This happens when you lose the transcendency of Allah and the importance of his highness and start to believe that Allah (swt) is everywhere, when He is in fact above and beyond his creation.

Page from an 11th-century Aramaic Targum manuscript of the Hebrew Bible.

The Jews who did not accept Jesus as their Messiah and who stayed religious Jews never would agree with any idea of their God having taken on a human or animal form. About the Messianic Jews I do agree we can find two sorts: the faithful Israelites which accept Jeshua (Jesus) as the son of man who brought salvation; but then strangely enough we also can find Messianics who take Jesus Messiah also to be the incarnate God.

Picture representing a cross and trinity

This girl also present pictures, but if she would have read her Bible very carefully she also should have found out Jews and Christians may not make or use pictures of God. So in case Jesus is God why did she use such pictures in her childhood and why did she pray in front of pictures and statues, which is forbidden by the Word of God, which can be found in the Bible. (You could also wonder if she agrees that Allah is the Most High God, why she publishes a picture of somebody who has to present the Divine Creator?)

Taking everything for granted

Growing up in one’s parents faith

It all points out, that most people just grow up in a denomination and just take everything for granted. Most of them take over the dogmatic teachings and refer all time to such dogma’s, which make them blind for what is really written in the Holy Scriptures. The same we can see by several Muslim groups which take other books than the Quran for their guide.

Encountering other Christians

The girl, also making the cross, the sign of the god Tamuz (the god of evil), thinking that all Christians would do such abolition in the eyes of God, has, we regret, not found other Christians, which could have shown such signs are not right. Strange enough you would think in her life she should have at least encountered some preaching Christians, like the Mormons and like the Jehovah Witnesses. Why did she not encounter and talk with Jehovah Witnesses. And when she did, why does she not refer in her article to such other Christians who do not believe in the Trinity? Everywhere in the world people can find people knocking at the door in the name of Jehovah. How did it come that it not happen to this girl’s house?

We are happy she at last came to see that the Trinity is not true, but regret she left Christendom without finding real Christianity. Now she herself finds places in the Bible which say it all. Why could she not find them before she became a Muslim?

Late discovery

Now she herself got also got to see how and where the trinity came into existence:

The trinity is actually not true. This ideology was a man made factor that later on throughout the years became a basic principle in Christianity. This so-called trinity was actually obtained by Greek philosophers (Plato’s theories) and Jewish Gnosticism; none of it is pure Christianity.

How did it come she discovered this so late?
How did it come she did not find the Gospel faith and turned away from Christianity? Was it because she did not look enough for the truth? Was she so blinded by the doctrinal teachings of her church?
Was she not willing to accept thinkings from those who preached the truth, but other Christians called them Antichrist or said it were not Christians, which frightened her so much she did not dare to meet them again or continue looking for more of such people?

Allah is everywhere

Though we can see she does not want to see, yet, that the Most High God (Allah) has His Eyes everywhere, and is everywhere. She writes:

” Stating that Allah (swt) is everywhere would mean that you also believe that Allah (swt) is in excrement or in dirty and filthy places, which obviously He’s not.” though why should God not be there where people live in slums, prisons and dirty places? Why would the Most High Merciful Allah not be there by those who are most in need of Him?

She also says:

” If you as a Christian respect, cherish and fear your Lord, then explain to me how on Earth you will ever learn to fear a God that made himself into a man, or is in these filthy places?”

but does not see that God never made himself into a man. Christ Jesus is a man of flesh and blood who was born and died, whilst Allah/God, the Elohim Most High, is an Eternal Spirit, Who has no beginning and no end, and as such was never born and cannot die. (Naturally she started of with the thesis that all Christians believe in the trinity,which was already a wrong start.)

Allah knowing each heart

According to the Holy Scriptures God is everywhere and as the Creator of the universe allows everything to be what is on earth and in heavens (the Worlds where the Quran and God, Allah, The Cherisher and Sustainer of the Worlds is talking about).
Also the Quran agrees that Allah knows the hearts and as such knows every individual. Having His eyes on each person He sees than also each person even on dirty places. Nobody can hide before Allah.

ثُمَّ أَنْتُمْ هَٰؤُلَاءِ تَقْتُلُونَ أَنْفُسَكُمْ وَتُخْرِجُونَ فَرِيقًا مِنْكُمْ مِنْ دِيَارِهِمْ تَظَاهَرُونَ عَلَيْهِمْ بِالْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ وَإِنْ يَأْتُوكُمْ أُسَارَىٰ تُفَادُوهُمْ وَهُوَ مُحَرَّمٌ عَلَيْكُمْ إِخْرَاجُهُمْ ۚ أَفَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِبَعْضِ الْكِتَابِ وَتَكْفُرُونَ بِبَعْضٍ ۚ
وَأَقِيمُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَآتُوا الزَّكَاةَ ۚ وَمَا تُقَدِّمُوا لِأَنْفُسِكُمْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ تَجِدُوهُ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ

فَمَا جَزَاءُ مَنْ يَفْعَلُ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْكُمْ إِلَّا خِزْيٌ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا ۖ وَيَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ يُرَدُّونَ إِلَىٰ أَشَدِّ الْعَذَابِ ۗ وَمَا اللَّهُ بِغَافِلٍ عَمَّا تَعْمَلُونَ

Do they not know that Allah knows what they keep secret and what they make known?(2:77)

Yet you it is who slay your people and turn a party from among you out of their homes, backing each other up against them unlawfully and exceeding the limits; and if they should come to you, as captives you would ransom them– while their very turning out was unlawful for you. Do you then believe in a part of the Book and disbelieve in the other? What then is the re ward of such among you as do this but disgrace in the life of this world, and on the day of resurrection they shall be sent back to the most grievous chastisement, and Allah is not at all heedless of what you do.(2:85)

Fear for Allah, Jehovah, the God of heaven and earth

Yes, all people should fear Allah/God, Whose Name He also has given to the world and which we should honour. In fear we should come to see that it is better to get to know the Word of God as best as we can. Even when we are or to live in the dirtiest place in the world, or in the most evil place of the world, we should know that Allah sees us and know what goes on in our heart. It is not because we are in the worst place in the world that God would not see us, would not have attention to us, would not be willing to reach out His Hand to us. Wherever we are we personally do have to make our own choices, and this also concerning who to follow, the world or the Most High God, Allah the Elohim Hashem Jehovah.

“For Jehovah your God, he is God of gods, and Lord of lords, the great God, the mighty, and the terrible, who regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward.” (Deuteronomy 10:17 ASV)

“And he said, Behold, I make a covenant: before all thy people I will do marvels, such as have not been {1} wrought in all the earth, nor in any nation; and all the people among which thou art shall see the work of Jehovah; for it is a terrible thing that I do with thee. {1) Heb [created]}” (Exodus 34:10 ASV)

“And in thy majesty ride on prosperously, {1} Because of truth and meekness [and] righteousness: And {2} thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things. {1) Or [In behalf of] 2) Or [let thy right hand teach]}” (Psalms 45:4 ASV)

“The fear of Jehovah is the beginning of wisdom; {1} A good understanding have all they that do {2} [his commandments]: His praise endureth for ever. {1) Or [Good repute] 2) Heb [them]}” (Psalms 111:10 ASV)

“He hath sent redemption unto his people; He hath commanded his covenant for ever: Holy and reverend is his name.” (Psalms 111:9 ASV)

“I will give thanks unto thee; For I am fearfully and wonderfully made: Wonderful are thy works; And that my soul knoweth right well.” (Psalms 139:14 ASV)

“The fear of Jehovah is to hate evil: Pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, And the perverse mouth, do I hate.” (Proverbs 8:13 ASV)

“And Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus, and said, Ye men of Athens, in all things, I perceive that ye are {1} very religious. {1) Or [somewhat superstitious]}” (Acts 17:22 ASV)

“So then, my beloved, even as ye have always obeyed, not {1} as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; {1) Some ancient authorities omit [as]}” (Philippians 2:12 ASV)

“But even if ye should suffer for righteousness’ sake, blessed [are ye:] and fear not their fear, neither be troubled;” (1 Peter 3:14 ASV)

“Jehovah will be terrible unto them; for he will famish all the gods of the earth; and men shall worship him, every one from his place, even all the {1} isles of the nations. {1) Or [coast-lands]}” (Zephaniah 2:11 ASV)

Every day to learn from the Word of God, the Holy Scriptures

We do have the warnings from the Holy Scriptures which we should take seriously. For better and for worse, we do have to learn every day, we do have to open our mind (every day) for the Word of God, and let it enter in our minds so that It can feed us, more than the worldly food. Are main interest should go to the Spiritual Food, that God is prepared to give to all those who want to receive His Word, wherever they might be.

All faithful should know how important it is to open their hearts to Allah, because it is God Who knows the hearts and shall judge the people, allowing only those who are justified, because of their willingness to learn and to get to know the Divine Creator.

Let us all cherish the Word of the Sublime Supreme Being Divine Creator and try to get to know Him better.

 “{1} But unto us God revealed {2} [them] through the Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. {1) Some ancient authorities read [For] 2) Or, it}” (1 Corinthians 2:10 ASV)

“14 Now the {1} natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually {2} judged. {1) Or [unspiritual]; Gr [psychical] 2) Or [examined]} 15 But he that is spiritual {1} judgeth all things, and he himself is {2} judged of no man. {1) Or [examineth] 2) Or [examined]}” (1 Corinthians 2:14-15 ASV)

“I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of my heart I have willingly offered all these things: and now have I seen with joy thy people, that are present here, offer willingly unto thee.” (1 Chronicles 29:17 ASV)

“Concerning which salvation the prophets sought and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that [should come] unto you:” (1 Peter 1:10 ASV)

“I can of myself do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is righteous; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (John 5:30 ASV)

“Now these were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of the mind, examining the Scriptures daily, whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11 ASV)

“3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be {1} judged of you, or of man’s {2} judgment: yea, I {3} judge not mine own self. {1) Or [examined] 2) Gr [day]; See 1 Co 3:13. 3) Or [examine]} 4 For I know nothing against myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that {1} judgeth me is the Lord. {1) Or [examineth]}” (1 Corinthians 4:3-4 ASV)

“Good and upright is Jehovah: Therefore will he instruct sinners in the way.” (Psalms 25:8 ASV)

“howbeit in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that I might instruct others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.” (1 Corinthians 14:19 ASV)

“not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting [one another]; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh.” (Hebrews 10:25 ASV)

“And many peoples shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth {1} the law, and the word of Jehovah from Jerusalem. {1) Or [instruction]}” (Isaiah 2:3 ASV)

Let us all read the Bible regularly so that we would not have to question like the author of the article does, with saying:

If this is in the Bible, then I really don’t know why Christians continue believing this so-called trinity.

Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me. (Isa 46:9)

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Please do read as well:

  1. God of gods
  2. God, Creation and the Bible Hope
  3. Attributes of God
  4. God is Spirit
  5. God Helper and Deliverer
  6. Only One God
  7. God is One
  8. Sayings around God
  9. “Who is The Most High” ? Who is thee Eternal? Who is Yehovah? Who is God?
  10. The Divine name of the Creator
  11. God about His name “יהוה“
  12. Jehovah Yahweh Gods Name
  13. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #2 Calling upon the Name of God
  14. Jehovah my strength
  15. One God the Father, a compendium of essays
  16. Praise the most High Jehovah God above all
  17. Lord or Yahuwah, Yeshua or Yahushua
  18. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  19. Yahushua, Yehoshua, Yeshua, Jehoshua of Jeshua
  20. Who was Jesus?
  21. Seeing Jesus
  22. Jesus Messiah
  23. Jesus spitting image of his father
  24. Jesus and his God
  25. Is Jesus God?
  26. Jesus is the Son of God but Not God the Son
  27. How much was Jesus man, and how much was he God?
  28. Yeshua a man with a special personality
  29. A man with an outstanding personality
  30. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  31. Do not be afraid. Good news because a Saviour has been born
  32. About a man who changed history of humankind
  33. Reasons that Jesus was not God
  34. He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. #1 Creator and His Prophets
  35. One Mediator
  36. Christ Versus the Trinity
  37. Doesn’t the name “Immanuel” show that Jesus is God, and therefore proves the Trinity? (Isa. 7:14, Mat. 1:23)
  38. Is Isaiah 9:6′s “Wonderful counselor” related to Isaiah 7:14 and 8:8′s “Immanuel”?
  39. Why does Isaiah 9:6 call Jesus “Mighty God, Everlasting Father”?
  40. Is God a Trinity?
  41. The Trinity – true or false?
  42. The Trinity – the Truth
  43. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  44. How did the Trinity Doctrine Develop
  45. History of the acceptance of a three-in-one God
  46. Altered to fit a Trinity
  47. Preexistence in the Divine purpose and Trinity
  48. The Great Trinity Debate
  49. Christianity without the Trinity
  50. Articles about the Trinity by the Free Christadelphians
  51. Articles about the Trinity by the Brothers in Christ or Christadelphians
  52. Articles about the Trinity by the Bible Students
  53. Articles about the Trinity by the Bible Researchers or Bijbelvorsers
  54. Articles about the Trinity on Our World
  55. Articles about the Trinity by Guestwriters
  56. Faith
  57. Concerning gospelfaith
  58. Of the many books Only the Bible can transform
  59. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  60. Do not forget the important sign of belief
  61. Religions and Mainliners
  62. Not all christians are followers of a Greco-Roman culture
  63. Vision blurred by cumulative burden of divisions
  64. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  65. A Society pleading poverty
  66. Russell and his beliefs
  67. Belonging to or being judged by
  68. Not words of any organisation should bind you, but the Word of God
  69. Idolatry or idol worship
  70. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  71. Muslims should also Fear God

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  • The Abrahamic Religions (robertjrgraham.com)
    When the emotions are removed, and we just look at the facts.  There really isn’t that much difference between the major religions at all.  Is there room for us to look at our beliefs objectively?  What about learning from each other, and evolving to understand?  Is it possible that there is something we don’t understand about God, the meaning of which could change everything?  Just a thought.
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    Islam is the second largest religion in the world after Christianity. As a monotheistic faith that originated in the Middle East, Islam holds many beliefs and practices in common with Judaism and Christianity.Judaism, Islam and Christianity are collectively known as “Abrahamic religions” because they trace their history to the covenant God made with Abraham in the Hebrew Bible.The Prophet Muhammad met both Jews and Christians during his lifetime, and Islam has come into frequent contact with both of its fellow monotheistic faiths throughout most of its history.

    As a brief guide of the similarities and differences of Islam, Judaism and Christianity, the following chart compares the statistics, origins, history and religious beliefs of these three great monotheistic faiths.

  • Dr. Reza Azlan’s Argument on the ‘Kalimah Allah’ (aimanamani.wordpress.com)
    Dr. Aslan says that “Al-Ilah means The God”.

    “Al-Ilah means ‘The God’. Allah is not the name of God.”

    Fine – Dr. Aslan says that it is okay for the Christians to call their God, Allah because to his understanding, Allah simply means ‘The God’. What Aslan failed to understand is that the Arabic word ‘Al’, meaning ‘the’ in English is used to emphasise the fact that ‘Allah’ is one and the only God. When a Muslim says ‘Allah’, he is referring to our one and only God. Now, for the Malaysian Christians who want to call their god, ‘Allah’ , does it means that they are rejecting the Christian doctrine of the Holy Trinity? Or do they think that Elohim, YHWH and Jehovah are not classy enough to refer to their god?

  • Celebrating Christendom’s Demise? (juicyecumenism.com)
    Celebrating liberation from the church’s supposed captivity under reputedly fallen Christendom has become popular among some conservative and liberal Protestants. According to this narrative, cultural Christianity often suffocated authentic faith and facilitated superficial religion.
    +
    Christendom’s obituary was even hailed at the recent Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s 221st General Assembly (2014), where it was determined, according to a denominational news report, that “post-Christendom life in the United States can be pretty exciting.”But should Christians really welcome the “excitement” of a more unChristian America? Apparently so, according to one speaker among the Presbyterians.
    +“Christendom is over,” declared Lillian Daniel of First Congregational Church in Glen Ellyn, Illinois at the General Assembly Breakfast. “The denominational market-share no longer exists. And in some ways, that is a beautiful thing.” She added, “It is good that we live in a multi-faith world.”

    Of course, Christianity has always existed in a multi-faith world, but maybe here she was referring to America specifically, although the adherents of non-Christian religion, according to one recent survey, are only 5 percent of U.S. population.

  • Islam, Violence, and the Nature of God (catholicworldreport.com)
    Although the topic of violence in Islam is a controversial one, Benedict XVI placed it at the center of his treatment of our knowledge of God within his often misunderstood and misrepresented Regensburg Lecture, given eight years ago, on September 12, 2006. Put simply, false views of God’s nature can lead to religiously motivated actions, such as terrorism and violent persecution, which are contrary to the nature and will of God. This discussion is all the more timely and important as the United States marks the anniversary of the attacks on September 11, 2001, as radical Islamist groups such as ISIS persecute Christians in Iraq and other countries, and as Catholics seek ways to move forward in authentic and meaningful dialogue with Muslims.Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? A number of prominent Catholic apologists and bloggers have addressed this question recently. This essay will briefly summarize and comment on each of their arguments. It will then present some further thoughts arguing that the question requires assistance from philosophy: how do we know God correctly, or more precisely, how do we get knowledge of God wrong?
  • Muslim convert calls the Pope’s bluff on Islam (ivarfjeld.com)
    Egyptian-born Magdi Cristiano Allam, 61, a prominent journalist and outspoken critic of Islam, publicly entered the Catholic Church on March 22, 2008 during an Easter Vigil service, receiving baptism directly from Benedict.
    After his conversion, Allam founded a small right-wing political party that lost badly in Italy’s general elections last April.The late Pope kisses the Koran. Writing on Monday in the right-wing daily Il Giornale, Allam explained that he considers his conversion to Catholicism finished “in combination with the end of (Benedict’s) pontificate.”
  • Malaysian Court: “Allah is not Bible’s God’ (rehmat1.com)
    The court decision provided the Zionist Mafia another excuse for Islam-bashing while showing their ignorance of their own Judeo-Christian religious scriptures.The presiding judge, Zawawi Salleh along with Federal Court judge Mohamed Apandi Ali and Appeals Court judge Abdul Aziz Abdul Rahim, provided sufficient religious background to support the court’s decision, which, naturally, was ignored by the Zionist-controlled mainstream media.Judge Zawari said there was potential for ambiguity if Allah was allowed to be used in The Herald.

    If the word Allah is to be employed in the Malay versions of The Herald to refer to God, there will be a risk of misrepresentation of God within Christianity. This is because the Christian concept of God as symbolised by the Trinity is absolutely and completely dissimilar to the concept of Allah in Islam. The potential for confusion is not confined only to Muslims but also to Christians,” said Zawari.

  • ‘I Realized It’s A Beautiful Religion’ – Mexican Catholics Leaving ‘Dios’ For ‘Allah’ (patdollard.com)

    For almost five centuries Catholicism has been the dominant religion in Mexico.

    In 1970, Catholics comprised 96.7 percent of Mexico’s population. By 2010, that number had fallen to 82.7 percent, according to the Pew Research Center. Most of this change is attributed to growth in other Christian denominations. Evangelicals, Protestants and Jehovah’s Witnesses now account for 8 percent of Mexicans who identify with a religion.

    And a small yet growing group of converts are seeking spiritual salvation in Islam. In fact, Pew estimates Mexico will be home to 126,000 Muslims by 2030, up from 111,000 in 2010.

  • For Bumiputera Christians, ‘Allah’ ban akin to cultural ‘genocide’, says archbishop (malaysia-today.net)
    Putrajaya’s persistence in refusing non-Muslim Malaysians the right to use the word “Allah” is tantamount to the systematic destruction of the language and culture of the Bumiputera community in Sabah and Sarawak, the head of the Anglican Church in Southeast Asia said.Archbishop Datuk Bolly Lapok said the word “Allah” has been part and parcel of the community’s language for generations and has become “embedded” in every aspect of their culture, including for the Bumiputera Christians, who make up the majority of Malaysia’s Christian population.However, the government’s prohibition and the Federal Court’s denial for the Catholic Church to appeal for the right to publish the “Allah” in its weekly newspaper, had made the Bumiputera Christians feel they had been wronged, said the Sarawakian senior clergyman.

    “In other words, it is in our language and culture DNA. We feel that the judgment was made without taking into due consideration of what the word means to us.

    “We feel there has been a miscarriage of justice. It is insidious. It is tantamount to an act of language and culture genocide,” said Bolly, who also chairs the Association of Churches in Sarawak.

  • Can we call God ‘Allah’? (christiantoday.com)
    The language used in the Bible has long been the subject of contention – not least in Malaysia, where authorities ruled this week that non-Muslims cannot refer to God as ‘Allah‘.A Muslim-majority country, many Malays believe that the national conscience must be firmly rooted in Islam, and therefore resent the influence of the Chinese Christian population who are active in evangelising among Malays.However, Mark Beaumont, senior lecturer in Islam and mission at the London School of Theology, says that while there is controversy regarding the way that God and Allah are referred in Malaysia, in other parts of the world it’s considered far less of a contentious issue.

    “In the Arab speaking world there’s no difficulty in calling God ‘Allah’ – they’ve been doing it in the Christian church and in the Bible for hundreds of years,” he explains.

    “In the Coptic Church in Egypt, the church in Syria, Jordan, Iraq and even Iran, it’s always been the practice to call God ‘Allah’ using the Arabic form. Although the Arabic Bible wasn’t translated fully before Islam came, it’s obvious that people were reading the Gospels using ‘Allah’ before the rise of Islam.

    “In the ancient history of the Middle East, ‘Allah’ is the equivalent of ‘Elohim’, the Hebrew word for God.”

  • Hajj 2014 – The Day of Arafat… (faithiswheretheheartis.wordpress.com)
    One has to remember that The Day of Arafat is a significant day for every Muslim. It is significant in many aspects for the Hajj Pilgrims as they travel from Mina to Arafat and it is also significant for the Muslims who are not performing Hajj. The Hajj Pilgrims will be travelling from Mina to Arafat (the place near Makkah, Saudi Arab – where the Mount Arafat is located). Mount Arafat, also known as Jabal-e-Rahmat (Mountain of Mercy) is the place where the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) stood and delivered his last, farewell sermon on 10th Hijri (632 AD); in accordance with the Islamic calendar.
    +
    One of Prophet Abraham’s main trials was to face the command of Allah (SWT) to kill his only son. Upon hearing this command, he prepared to submit to Allah’s Will. When he was all prepared to do it, Allah (SWT) revealed to him that his “sacrifice” had already been fulfilled. He had shown that his love for his Lord superseded all others; that he would lay down his own life or the lives of those dear to him in order to submit to God.

 

Entrance of a king to question our position #2 Who do we want to see and to be

Previously

In the previous writing we looked at the multitudes, being more obedient and yielding to the effect of the sign, who went to meet the Christ, hymning him as one who had conquered death, and carrying palm branches. And they do not praise him with ordinary language, but quote from the inspired Scripture that which was beautifully spoken with regard to him; confessing that he was indeed King of Israel, whom also they called specially their own king, accepting the lord-ship of the Christ.

We also saw that they spoke about the Son, they say, is Blessed: not because he who blesseth all things and guards them from destruction, and who is of the ineffable essence of the Father, receives the blessing which comes from the Father; but because the blessing which is due to One Who is God and Lord by Nature is offered to him from us, inasmuch as he came in the Name of the Lord.

Knowing his place under God

Many people in the old times as in the contemporary time do not see the prophetic language, which was quoted very suitably, with regard to that man that entered the gates of Jerusalem on a colt. For indeed some are called lords, who are not such by nature, but have the honourable name granted to them by favour. Many of them do not see the difference between tittles and names and do not remember that in the Holy Scriptures there is also spoken of a lot of gods and lords. In the Book of books men are also called “true,” when they abstain from falsehood: but this is not the thing to say with regard to Christ; for he is not called “Truth” for the reason that he does not speak falsely, but because he has that nature which is altogether superior to falsehood. He was a real man of flesh and blood and bones, having placed in the womb of his mother Miriam (Mary/Maria) from the lineage of king David. Though coming from a blue blood family, he was a simple ‘carpenters’ son. His earthly father Joseph was a skilled labourer. Jesus knew very well his place in the community, but also knew the task given by his heavenly Father, which was more important than his position on earth, where he could do nothing without his Father in heaven; Who is grater than him.

John 5:19-20 ESV  So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. (20)  For the Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing. And greater works than these will he show him, so that you may marvel.

Showing the work of his Father and the way to God

In the short period of Jesus his public life, he did many miracles, but never claimed to do them by himself, and never wanting people to thank him, but told them to thank his heavenly Father, Whom is also our Father.

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Jesus Christ fragment before his death

John 14:6-7 ESV  Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (7)  If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

John 14:28-31 ESV  You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. (29)  And now I have told you before it takes place, so that when it does take place you may believe. (30)  I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no claim on me, (31)  but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us go from here.

The love of Jesus Christ (Jeshua from Nazareth) was with his heavenly Father, to whom he always prayed and taught others to pray to Him as well.

On Palm Sunday Catholics pray.

Almighty and everlasting God, who didst ordain that our Lord Jesus Christ should sit upon the foal of an ass, and didst teach the multitude to spread their garments or branches of trees in the way and to sing Hosanna to His praise: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may be able to imitate their innocence and deserve to partake of their merit.

A redeemer for the people coming to Jerusalem

File:14th-century unknown painters - The Osnabrück Altarpiece (detail) - WGA23756.jpg

Triumphal entry into Jerusalem – The Osnabrück Altarpiece (detail) Unknown Master, German (active 1370s in Westphalia)

Never did Jesus ask the people to honour him. Jesus was an humble man. This holy week we better think about that humbleness he kept. We should think about that man about whom the children cried out, saying:

This is he that is come for the salvation of the people. He is our salvation, and the redemption of Israel. How great is he whom the Thrones and Dominions go forth to meet! Fear not, O daughter of Sion; behold thy King cometh to thee sitting on an ass’s colt, as it is written.

By this man, sent form God, salvation could come over the people there but also here now.

The multitude in Jesus his time went forth to meet their redeemer with flowers and palms, and paid the homage due to a triumphant conqueror:

the Gentiles proclaim the Son of God; and their voices thunder through the skies in praise of Christ: Hosanna in the highest!

It was the time for the this one seated on the colt:

Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord: Hosanna in the Highest!

As Jeshua entered the holy city, the Hebrew children, went declaring the resurrection of life, with palm branches, cried out:

Hosanna in the highest.

An appeal to be stopped

The people in charge of Jerusalem city and its temple did not like it at all that when the people heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, they went forth to meet him, showing more interest in him than in what the priests had to tell in what they considered to be the House of God.

For them it was better that this “Saviour” would not get any more attention. He had already received to much followers because he had taken their amazement by the many miracles he had done. His followers were also calling to take up the same mind which Christ Jesus showed them. How could they talk about his nature coming from the first, divine, and yet he did not see, in the rank of Godhead, a prize to be coveted (Philippians 2: 5-11).

Jesus, like his earthly parents Mary and Joseph, knew his origin, but he did not want to boast by his descent. He dispossessed himself, and took the nature of a slave, fashioned in the likeness of men, and presenting himself to us as a humble man doing the works of his Father in heaven. He lowered his own dignity, accepted an obedience which even was going to bring him to his death, death on a wooden stake.

A name given to be greater

We should know that that is why God has raised him to such a height, given him that name which is greater than any other name; so that everything in heaven and on earth and under the earth must bend the knee before the name of Jesus, and every tongue must confess Jesus Christ as the lord, dwelling in the glory of God the Father.

Philipppians 2:5-11 ESV  Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,  (6)  who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,  (7)  but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  (8)  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  (9)  Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,  (10)  so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,  (11)  and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Not own will but the Will of the Father

Jesus his mind had always been on trying to do what God wanted from him. He also learned the apostles that nothing that we do means anything if the mind is not continuously fixed on God. All labour, all study, all service and sacrifice and suffering, are useless if we do not keep God before our mind, for none of it is serving its intended purpose. Like Jesus always did everything for God we always should remember: if we also are not consciously doing it for God — in love of God — it is fruitless and meaningless in any eternal sense. The mind fixed on God — in total harmony with God — is the ultimate goal and purpose of all. If any activity is not contributing to this purpose, but rather diverting the mind from it to its own self, then that activity is counter-productive and destructive, however “good” it may be. It has usurped the position of God in our heart and mind and thoughts. It has become idolatry.

Pope Francis I on Palm Sunday

Pope Francis leads the Palm Sunday mass at Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican April 13, 2014. REUTERS-Alessandro Bianchi

Pope Francis leads the Palm Sunday mass at Saint Peter’s Square at the Vatican April 13, 2014. – Credit: Reuters/Alessandro Bianchi

The tired and somber-looking Pope Francis I, who led a Palm Sunday service before more than 100,000 people, opening two packed weeks of activities including Easter and the canonization of two popes, rode into the square of the Vatican on a white jeep and stopped at the centre of the square to bless palm and olive branches. He delivered an impromptu homily, putting aside the one he had prepared.

Francis spoke of the events on the last two days of Jesus’ life – his betrayal by Judas, his arrest, beating, trial and crucifixion – and asked his listeners to think hard about who they resembled more, those who helped Jesus or those who condemned him, betrayed him or were indifferent to his fate. For us this holy week we should think seriously about what had happened, what the people undertook and should question which site we do want to take.

We all could wonder like the pontiff:

“Where is my heart? Who among these people am I like? This question will remain with us all week.”

For the second straight year, Francis, whose has said the Roman Catholic Church must be closer to the poor and suffering, is holding two services for Holy Thursday outside one of Rome’s basilicas. In one he will wash and kiss the feet of elderly people in a nursing home to commemorate Jesus’ gesture of humility to his apostle on the night before he died.

14 April 2014 = 14 Nisan and the Holy Week

Tonight, April 14, we shall remember in our service this particular moment at the beginning of 14 Nisan, when the sun goes down and darkness might come over the world.

“For the infant Church, ‘Palm Sunday’ was not a thing of the past,”

wrote Pope Benedict XVI in Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week (Ignatius, 2011).

“Just as the Lord entered the Holy City that day on a donkey, so too the Church saw him coming again and again in the humble form of bread and wine.”

That “Bread and Wine“, the symbols of a New Covenant we shall remember tonight.

“At the Last Supper, on the night when he was betrayed, our savior instituted the eucharistic sacrifice of his body and blood”,

states the Vatican II Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy,

“He did this in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the Cross throughout the centuries until He should come again, and so to entrust to His beloved spouse, the Church, a memorial of His death and resurrection: a sacrament of love, a sign of unity, a bond of charity, a paschal banquet in which Christ is eaten, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us” (par. 47).

Form of a slave

The Catholic Church states also that Saint Paul in the great Christological hymn in his letter to the Philippians wrote that

“Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped”

They say the Son of God came in the “form of a slave” and humbled himself, accepting the cruelty of death on the cross. This, of course, was a most astounding, unexpected descent, flowing from the love the Father and the obedience of the son.

In the eyes of the world, the cross was complete and utter defeat. A ‘cross’ is the sign of the god Tammuz, the god of evil and “son god”, and by presenting this man nailed on that sign of evil they consider this evil conquered. The symbol of this son god would also be used to present the Christian son god or God the son (or god-son).

But, as pope Benedict XVI in Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week (Ignatius, 2011) noted, “The hour of the Cross is the hour of the Father’s true glory.”

The pilgrims who accompanied Jesus cried out, “Hosanna” (that is, “Save us!”), sang the praises of the Son of David, and told the unsettled city dwellers:

“This is Jesus the prophet, from Nazareth in Galilee.”

Not his will but the Will of his Father

Many had been greatly troubled by the news of Jesus’ birth (Matthew 2:2-3), now the city was upset by this display of joyful praise; the stage was set for the arrest and crucifixion of Christ, where the vertical and horizontal movements would meet according to Catholics on the Cross.

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Veringendorf St. Michael Gethsemane-Scene Detail of the left column of the choir, facing the nave, showing the Agony in the Garden (Jesus Christ praying in the garden Gethsemane )

Many have forgotten what Jesus did and whom he really was. This humble man had feelings like we and was also very afraid , like we can be. Also he doubted a moment about the position of God in his life. The gospel-writers were not afraid to write it down, so that we too could see how agony could be come master of the inner soul of Christ Jesus. We this week should also remember that cry of that man of flesh and blood, who sweated in the garden of Gethsemane.  There he brought his last hours with his disciples and asked them to pray with him. There it was that Jesus said prayers to his Father in fear of what would be coming; Though there he also declared that not his will should happen. Clearly we get to know that not Jesus his will is most important, but the Will of Jesus his Father, the Only One God of gods.

Matthew 6:10 ESV  Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Those words should remind us that Jesus also said:

Matthew 7:21 ESV  “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

For Christ Jesus this doing the will of the Father was most important.

John 4:34 ESV  Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to accomplish his work.

A call to witness

The God of our fathers appointed Jesus and his apostles, including Saul (Paul) to know His Will, to see the Righteous One and to hear a voice from his mouth, so that they could be a witness for him to everyone of what they have seen and heard. (Acts of the Apostles 22:14-15)

Luke 22:39-44 ESV  And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him.  (40)  And when he came to the place, he said to them, “Pray that you may not enter into temptation.” (41)  And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed,  (42)  saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.” (43)  And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him.  (44)  And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.

A Spirit like God has no flesh, no blood, no bones, but Jesus had it all. He was the promise of God, the Word spoken in the Garden of Eden, that had become flesh and had brought words of truth. It was up to people to listen to those words and to take them at heart, or to ignore what they say.

Words of the Trusted One who does not forsake

Jesus had always loved and trusted the Words of his Father and had explained them to others. He also had told them they could come to his Father and trust Him. But now looking at death Jesus also was taken by fear and felt that it looked like God was far, far away from him. In case Jesus would have been God he would not have been afraid of death,because he clearly knew it could do nothing to God, or even to God’s people. But now, being a man of flesh and blood, coming into the reality to face that horror, he too was taken by fear. He also wondered, like many of us, if it could not have been that God left him on his own. He also cried like many of us want to do at certain moments:

File:Sankt Ingenuin und Albuin in Saubach Passionstafeln.jpg

Passion of Jesus (Jesus in the olive garden and Veronica wipes the face of Jesus) on painted tables in the Church of Saint Ingenuinus

Matthew 27:46 ESV  …. “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

As ordinary man, also afraid of death we to shall remember those words Jesus cried out about three in the afternoon in his own Aramaic language. He was calling to Eli, the Elohim his God, Who is also the God of Abraham and the God of Moses. He did not call onto himself but on the Only One Divine Creator.

Remembering tragic events

Today we are going to remember those tragic events and would like to call also

“My God, my God, look upon me;”

We should know that God did not leave his son in the dark. God was willing to take this man as a complete offering, the purest Lamb the world could give as ransom.

We should see that man and should see ourselves placed in his world. We, perhaps may also ask

Why cannot my sinful words reach Thee, Who art my salvation?

some people even might say:

Thou dost not answer, my God, when I cry out to Thee day and night and I am patient still. Thou art there nontheless, dwelling in the holy place Israel’s ancient boast. It was in Thee that our fathers trusted, and Thou didst reward their trust by delivering them. They cried to Thee, and rescue came; no need to be ashamed of such trust as theirs.

Are we not poor worms having no manhood left?

Where in this world we would like to stand

We should question ourselves where in this world we would like to stand and whom we would like to be. Do we want to be of this world or just living in this world where others may consider us a by-word, the laughing-stock of the rabble. Are we wanting to go with everybody keeping up traditions, like having Easter decorations and chocolate eggs searchings in the garden on Easter Sunday, telling children the bells are coming from Rome to throw eggs? (What do those bells and eggs have to do with the resurrection of Christ?)

Do we want to catch sight of us falling to mocking; mouthing out insults, while others toss their heads in scorn. Do we want to accept that Jesus was really a man who really died and not fake his death because God can not die? Are we willing to commit ourselves like Jesus committed himself to his heavenly Father? Are we not afraid that we do not always feel God around us? Are we accepting that we at moments can be week and also like Jesus may wonder why we do not feel God to be with us?

Do you ever have questions why “the Lord” does not come to your rescue and set you as His favourite free? Did you, when you felt abandoned by God, ever ask yourself if you were praising the right god? Have you ever thought if you were worshipping the right god or person or spirit?

These days when we remember the Passion of Jesus Christ, looking back at the time when Jesus had ended all these words which we can find written down in the New Testament, are we willing to place ourselves in the whole story and see the full picture?

Let us look at the disciples who even got more afraid after Jesus had died, but when the Comforter had come, found ways to get over their fear and went out in the world to preach.

Night of remembrance

They also kept remembering the exodus of God His people from slavery, but also remembered the moment that whilst they were at supper in the upper room in Jerusalem, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke: and gave to his disciples, and said:

Take ye, and eat. This is My body. And taking the chalice, He gave thanks, and gave to them, saying: Drink ye all of this. For this is My blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins. And I say to you, I will not drink from henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I shall drink it with you new in the kingdom of My Father.

Let us not be scandalized in Jesus this night. Let us come together tonight to sit down and pray that we may not enter into temptation. We should be aware that the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. We should be stronger than human tradition and show the world where we do want to stand in this world.

Behold, the hour is at hand that we remember that the Son of Man was betrayed into the hands of sinners. Let us go to feel united with the one who was sent by the heavenly Father to save us from all evil. Let us see how then the Scriptures are fulfilled, that thus it happened some two thousand years ago.

We should look at the man who was accused by the chief priests and the elders, who made no answer, so that the procurator wondered exceedingly. Pilate knew that they had delivered Jesus up out of envy. Also his wife sent to him, saying,

“Have nothing to do with that Just Man, for I have suffered many things in a dream today because of Him.”

Who do you want to be and what do you want to believe?

Are you willing to listen to such dreams and such talks from others? Do you want to believe those few people at that time who saw in Jesus the promised Messiah and accepted him as the son of God, the sent one from above? Or do you prefer to follow the same thoughts as the Pharisees and those who accused Christ of saying he was equal with God?

Do you want to be like the two robbers which were crucified with Jesus, one on his right hand and one on his left, who when the passers-by were jeering at him, shaking their heads, were saying,

“Thou Who destroyest the temple, and in three days buildest it up again, save Thyself! If Thou art the Son of God, come down from the cross!”

In like manner, the chief priests with the Scribes and the elders, mocking, said,

“He saved others, Himself He cannot save! If He is the King of Israel, let Him come down now from the cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now, if He wants Him; for He said, “I am the Son of God.”

What do you need to believe Jesus is really the son of God and not god the son?

Do you feel with Jesus when at the ninth hour (3 p.m.) Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying,

“Eli, Eli, lamma sabacthani.”

That is,

“My God, My God, why have You forsaken me?”

God can not die but on that day Jesus again cried out with a loud voice, and gave up his spirit. And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were rent, and the tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep arose; and coming forth out of the tombs after his resurrection, they came into the holy city, and appeared to many. Now when the centurion, and those who were with him keeping guard over Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that were happening, they were very much afraid, and they said,

“Truly He was the Son of God.”

What do you want more?

Do you need extra wonders or spectacular events before you want to believe who Christ Jesus is? Are would you be willing to accept the stories which God allowed to continue through the ages and to reach many people in many languages?

Are you willing to tell the Most High that you know you need no other gift to set before Him, because the ransom paid by God His son Jeshua by God His Majesty may obtain for us the grace of devotion, and ensure us an eternity of bliss. Through our lord Jesus Christ His Son.

We should know that it is truly meet and just, right and for our salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto the Father of Jesus Christ, who like Jesus looked at Him and praised Him, we also should worship Him as the Only One God Whose Will we want to do.

That we may pray tonight  to the Most High and be thankful that He wanted to accept that offering by His son, so that we can have light and eternal life. To this Most Holy Father Almighty, everlasting God Who didst establish the salvation of mankind, by the death of His beloved son on the tree, that whence death came thence also life might arise again, and that he, who overcame by the tree, by the tree also might be overcome.

Tonight we shall look on a special way to the symbols and place in our minds how that man born in Bethlehem made that our sins be purged away, and our just desires fulfilled.

We shall be looking at Jesus on the donkey, thinking we are no donkey. But perhaps it would not be bad to night to see  ways in which we can identify with him. A colt is meant to work hard, are we? Do we want to carry Jesus and have also all have heavy burdens to bear?
Being a Christian we shall not be liked so much by others. And when we only want to worship One God, we shall be in the minority outvoted by the world.

Are you  prepared to take your humble position in this world like Jesus took his position, only willing to do the Will of his Father?

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Preceding article: Entrance of a king to question our position #1 Coming in the Name of the Lord

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Find also to read:

  1. The meek one riding on an ass
  2. The son of David and the first day of the feast of unleavened bread
  3. Importance of the only proper name of God
  4. Praise the most High Jehovah God above all
  5. Hashem השם, Hebrew for “the Name”
  6. Titles of God beginning with the Aleph in Hebrew
  7. Jehovah Yahweh Gods Name (Video)
  8. The Divine name of the Creator (Video)
  9. Use of /Gebruik van Jehovah or/of Yahweh in Bible Translations/Bijbel vertalingen
  10. People Seeking for God 3 Laws and directions
  11. People Seeking for God 5 Bread of life
  12. People Seeking for God 7 The Lord and lords
  13. Lord and owner
  14. About a man who changed history of humankind
  15. Lord or Yahuwah, Yeshua or Yahushua
  16. Who was Jesus?
  17. The Beginning of the life of Jesus Christ
  18. Jesus begotten Son of God #14 Beloved Preminent Son and Mediator originating in Mary
  19. Nazarene Commentary Luke 1:67-80 – Zechariah’s Prophecy
  20. Jesus begotten Son of God #16 Prophet to be heard
  21. Jesus begotten Son of God #17 Adam, Eve, Mary and Christianity’s central figure
  22. Jesus begotten Son of God #18 Believing in inhuman or human person
  23. Jesus begotten Son of God #19 Compromising fact
  24. Jesus is the Son of God but Not God the Son
  25. Yeshua a man with a special personality
  26. A man with an outstanding personality
  27. An unblemished and spotless lamb foreknown
  28. No Other Name (But Jesus)
  29. Death of Christ on the day of preparation
  30. Impaled until death overtook him
  31. After the Sabbath after Passover, the resurrection of Jesus Christ
  32. A fact of History or just a fancy Story
  33. Why do we need a ransom?
  34. Ransom for all
  35. Suffering redemptive because Jesus redeemed us from sin
  36. Servant of his Father
  37. Only one God
  38. God of gods
  39. The Trinity – true or false?
  40. The Trinity – the Truth
  41. Altered to fit a Trinityod of gods
  42. History of the acceptance of a three-in-one God
  43. Christianity without the Trinity
  44. Sitting at the right hand of God
  45. Human Nature: What does the Bible teach?
  46. Your Sins Are Forgiven
  47. God is my refuge and my fortress in Him I will trust

++

Additional reading:

  1. Trinity And Pagan Influence
  2. Trinity: A False Doctrine of a False Church
  3. Part 2) God is not a Trinity
  4. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  5. Unitarianism and the Bible of the Holy Trinity
  6. Trinity: The Truth about Matthew 28:19 & 1 John 5:7
  7. Anyone Who Goes Too Far and Does Not Abide in the Teaching of Christ, Does Not Have God
  8. Is Jesus God?
  9. If the Father is the “only true God” (John 17:3) , does that mean that Jesus is a false god?
  10. Following Jesus’ Footsteps
  11. Massacre of children leaves many asking, ‘Where’s God?’

+++

 

  • Gazing at the Crucified Christ (prayersofmysoul.wordpress.com)
    We see Jesus looking at each of us with great tenderness and compassion. We hear him promising forgiveness and eternal life to anyone who turns to him in repentance. We see a Messiah who loves us unconditionally, who loves us enough to endure and conquer not only our sins but death itself.
  • “The Emptied-Out God” (stgregoryschurch.typepad.com)
    We call this Sunday “the Sunday of the Passion” as if the passion of our Lord began with his entrance into Jerusalem. But in his letter to the Philippians (2:5-11)
  • Hosanna! (kswptim.wordpress.com)
    Do you welcome Jesus into your life, into your home, school, or where you work?Is He declared Lord and Savior by you for all to see and hear?Or will you deny Him later in the week; turn away from Him and let Him die in your life?When you take Jesus as Savior, He is Savior all the time – not just one day a week but every day of the week.
  • Jesus is my Joy, Jesus is true peace (jesusmygodforever.wordpress.com)
    There are so many people in this world who just don’t know Jesus, and it’s sad because he truly yearns for all of us to be in a close relationship with him, he yearns to save all of us from death, destruction, hell. He yearns for our days to be filled with a great peace that no man can obtain without Jesus giving his peace to them. No matter what anyone says how happy they are or how peaceful their hearts are if they don’t know Jesus  as their Lord then they cannot know true peace.
  • Palm Sunday, a day to reflect (endtimebibleprophecy.wordpress.com)
    The day that our Lord and Savior would ride into Jerusalem to celebrate Passover, while riding on the back of a donkey, the King of kings, the Lord of lords.  Coming in peace, love, and hope.  Humbling Himself before the nation of Israel.
    +
    Many did not believe that Jesus was the Messiah spoken of in the Old Testament.  He did not meet the expectations of whom they believed their King should be.  He did not come with great force and to conquer their enemies.  But instead came in quiet and peacefully.  Yet, many today still do not believe that Jesus is Lord.
  • Palm Sunday 2014. At the Name of Jesus Every Knee Shall Bow. St. Matthew 21. 1-11 (deprofundisclamaviadtedomine.wordpress.com)
    The crowd reads Jesus’ actions as proclaiming that He is the King. And even the people of Jerusalem pay attention, the citizens of the city the Lord chose for His dwelling place, the temple. Living in such a holy place, the people of Jerusalem aren’t easily impressed by people claiming to be prophets. But today, on Palm Sunday, when the crowds of Passover pilgrims raise the festal shout of salvation, they ask, “Who is this?” (21:10) And the answer comes back, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth in Galilee.” (21:11)
  • Palm Sunday-hymn for Today (berry20nice.wordpress.com)
  • The Gates of Jerusalem (christinesunderland.com)
    The great festivals of the year mark our time on earth, our passage, our pilgrimage from birth to death. Where was I last Palm Sunday? Where will I be Palm Sunday 2015? We mark time with festivals, for time is limited, making it precious; numbered days are valuable days. Was I journeying closer to God or away from him?
  • Palm Sunday – “o Gates, Lift High Your Heads” (prayers4reparation.wordpress.com)
    He, the Lord of hosts, he is the king of glory.
    Hosanna in the highest!
  • Hosanna to Hallelujah (my52sundays.wordpress.com)
    From ancient times Christians have brought palm branches home from church on Palm Sunday.  Some place them on the wall behind a cross or sacred picture.  Farmers would bury palm branches in the corners of their fields.
    As time went on, many people added a twist to this tradition by weaving the palms into a cross, a picture frame, or a flower. Some of these were very elaborate, requiring considerable craftsmanship which was passed on in families from generation to generation.The holiest week of the year begins today.  But the world doesn’t stop.  Everything goes on, all the regular TV programs, the regular work schedule, income taxes, all of our daily chores.  So…if I want this to be a “holy week” what do I do?  I decide.

 

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Entrance of a king to question our position #1 Coming in the Name of the Lord

Palm Sunday

 For the Catholics it was yesterday Palm Sunday which could be considered by some of them as a great and holy day, as “it commemorates the last triumph of Our Lord Jesus Christ on earth and opens the Holy Week“.

They do not follow the Jewish calendar for remembering what Christ has done. They prefer to fit in the events of Jesus his life with the heathen calendar, wanting the high feast on the day of Estra the goddess of fertility. One week before the celebration of fertility, with Easter-bunnies and chocolate eggs, as signs of the procreation they want to take time to think about the man who entered the city Jerusalem on a donkey.

Triumphant entry

English: Description: Left Apsis: Jesus enteri...For them on Palm Sunday, their Church celebrates the triumphant entry of their Lord into Jerusalem, when the multitude, going before and following after him, cut off branches from the trees and strewed in his way, shouting:

 “Hosanna [glory and praise] to the Son of David. Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord.”

It is in commemoration of this triumph that palms are blessed and borne in solemn procession.

The principal ceremonies of the day are the blessing of the palms, the procession, and the Mass with the reading of the Passion. The blessing of the palms follows a ritual similar to that of the Mass, — having an Epistle, a Gospel, a Preface, and a Sanctus. The Epistle refers to the murmuring of the Israelites in the desert, and their sighing for the flesh-pots of Egypt. The Gospel describes the triumphant entry into Jerusalem. The prayers which follow the Sanctus ask God to

“bless the branches of palm . . . that whoever receives them may find protection of soul and body . . . that into whatever place they shall be brought, the inhabitants may obtain His blessing; that the devout faithful may understand the mystical meaning of the ceremony, that is, that the palms represent the triumph over the prince of death . . . and therefore, the issue thereof declares both the greatness of the victory, and the riches of God’s mercy.”

Singing “Hosanna to the Son of David!”

By singing “Hosanna to the Son of David!” they should remember in which lineage that man came. By singing “Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord.” they should hear the voices that sing he came in the Name of the Most High. The evangelic reading should also make it clear that people greeted a man which they recognised as a king. He had to be the “King of Israel”

When the people in the congregation hear the readings about the death of that man, they should become more aware that this man from Nazareth really died. At the collect they even sing:

O God, whom to love above all is righteousness, multiply in us the gifts of Thine ineffable grace: and since Thou hast given us in the death of Thy Son to hope for those things which we believe, grant us by the Resurrection of the same to attain the end to which we aspire. Who with Thee liveth and reigneth in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. R. Amen.

Not Hearing words spoken by prophets

The people coming to the mass of that Sunday hear not the important story of those days when the children of Israel before they came into Elim, where there were twelve fountains of water, and seventy palm trees; and they encamped by the waters. How they could come out of the land of Egypt is not told on that day. The church goers hear about the chief priests and the Pharisees who gathered a council and said:

What do we, for this man doth many miracles? If we let Him alone so, all will believe in Him;  and the Romans will come, and take away our place and nation.

At that time, when Jesus drew nigh to Jerusalem, and was come to Bethphage, unto Mount Olivet, then he sent two disciples, saying to them:

“Go ye into the village that is over against you, and immediately you shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her; loose them and bring them to me; and if any man shall say anything to you, say ye that the lord hath need of them; and forthwith he will let them go.”

 

The entry of Jesus into Jerusalem on Palm Sund...

The entry of Jesus into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

All those who call themselves ‘Christian’ should remember that all those things which Jesus asked had to be done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets.

In the Old Writings was also written that the daughter of Sion had to be told that her King was going to come to thee meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of her that is used to the yoke.

Jesus his disciples went looking for the animal and did as Jesus commanded them. And they brought the ass and the colt, and laid their garments upon them, and made him sit thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way, and others cut boughs from the trees, and strewed them in the way, and the multitudes that went before and that followed cried, saying:

Hosanna to the Son of David; Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord.

Thanking God

The priest asks people to lift up their hearts and to give thanks to their “Lord our God”. they also say:

 It is meet and just.
It is truly meet and just, right and availing unto salvation, that we should always and in all places give thanks unto Thee, O Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God. Who dost glory in the assembly of Thy Saints. For Thy creatures serve Thee, because they acknowledge Thee as their only Creator and God; and Thy whole creation praiseth Thee, and Thy Saints bless Thee. For with free voice they confess that great Name of Thine only-begotten Son before the kings and powers of this world. Around whom the Angels and Archangels, the Thrones and Dominions stand; and with all the host of the heavenly army, sing the hymn of Thy glory, saying without ceasing:
Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of hosts. Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory. Hosanna in the highest. Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest.

Talking about whom coming in the Name of God

Who is it they are talking about? Who “cometh in the Name of the Lord”? To whom do they want to look up as their Creator and Divine God?

On such a day as Palm Sunday people should not only  look at the many processions which strangely enough still keep attracting lots of people in many countries. In Belgium we find some which are even protected by the Unesco inheritance fund.

You may wonder if people do want to take time to think about the One Who was all behind the events. How many do see Whom is spoken of when they say:

We beseech Thee, O holy Lord, almighty Father, everlasting God, that Thou wouldst vouchsafe to bless + and hallow + this creature of the olive tree, which Thou didst cause to shoot out of the substance of the wood, and which the dove when returning to the ark brought in its mouth: that whosoever shall receive it may find protection of soul and body; and that it may be to us, O Lord, a saving remedy and the sacred sign of Thy grace. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God for ever and ever.

Feelings and degradation

Because they take Jesus as their god you might wonder how much value they give to the feelings that Nazarene man must have gone through when first he was jubilated as a king and afterwards degraded to the worst thief and murderer.

In his lifetime Jesus nearing his end as a servant of his Father in heaven, had taught his followers also to become servants for the Most High. That day he received faithfully in honour of God His Name; that into whatsoever place they shall be brought, those who dwell in that place may obtain God His blessing, and all adversities being removed. Those believing in a Tri-Une or Three-Une God better would think about what Catholics pray on Palm Sunday:

“Thy right hand may protect those who have been redeemed by our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son. Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God for ever and ever.”

Who is that Right Hand from? Who is that Protector they are speaking of? They also clearly say there is their Lord Jesus Christ, who is the son of that Owner of the ‘right hand‘.

Faithful redeemer

The Catholics continue their prayer:

O God, who, by the wonderful order of Thy disposition, hast been pleased to manifest the dispensation of our salvation even from things insensible: grant, we beseech Thee, that the devout hearts of Thy faithful may understand to their benefit what is mystically signified by the fact that on this day the multitude, taught by a heavenly illumination, went forth to meet their Redeemer, and strewed branches of palms and olive at His feet.

Who has been faithful to Whom? Who is the Redeemer to been met? Whose triumphs over the prince of death are they speaking of?

From the Old Testament we do know that God can not die but those Catholics say themselves

For that pious multitude understood that these things were then prefigured; that our Redeemer, compassionating human miseries, was about to fight with the prince of death for the life of the whole world, and, by dying, to triumph. For which cause they dutifully ministered such things as signified in him the triumphs of victory and the richness of mercy.
And we also, with full faith, retaining this as done and signified, humbly beseech Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God, through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, that in him and through him, whose members Thou hast been pleased to make us, we may become victorious over the empire of death, and may deserve to be partakers of His glorious Resurrection. Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God for ever and ever.

They speak about the dying one and look at Christ Jesus. And yes it was that man from Nazareth who was the one coming from the God above. It was that man of flesh and blood, who only wanted to do the Will of his Father in heaven, who was willing to speak for his Father and let His name be known. It was that man who was impaled on a piece of wood until death overtook him, for the prise of sin of many.

Salvation send into the world

This Nazarene Jew wanted not only that we got to know his heavenly Father, but that we also got to know ourselves and that we would choose the way we wanted to go.

In the Sunday service of the Catholics the people in the congregation also pray.

 O God, who for our salvation didst send into this world Thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord, that He might humble Himself unto our state, and call us back to Thee; for whom also, as he entered into Jerusalem to fulfill the Scriptures, a multitude of faithful people, with zealous devotion, strewed their garments, with palm branches, in the way: grant, we beseech Thee, that we may prepare for him the way of faith, from which the stone of offense and rock of scandal being removed, our works may flourish before Thee with branches of justice, that so we may be found worthy to follow his footsteps.

They say that God sent His son into this world, but in which way do they believe that? They also say they want to be worthy to follow his footsteps. But what do we have to do to follow his footsteps? Is it not in the first place accepting who Jesus really was and willing to follow his teachings?

+

  1. The son of David and the first day of the feast of unleavened bread
  2. The Divine name of the Creator
  3. Importance of the only proper name of God
  4. Archeological Findings the name of God YHWH
  5. Praise the most High Jehovah God above all
  6. Death of Christ on the day of preparation
  7. Jesus begotten Son of God #16 Prophet to be heard
  8. Jesus begotten Son of God #18 Believing in inhuman or human person
  9. Impaled until death overtook him
  10. Servant of his Father
  11. The Trinity – true or false?
  12. The Trinity – the Truth
  13. Altered to fit a Trinityod of gods
  14. History of the acceptance of a three-in-one God
  15. Christianity without the Trinity
  16. Sitting at the right hand of God
  17. Following Jesus’ Footsteps
  18. Choose you this day whom ye will serve

++

Additional reading:

  1. Trinity And Pagan Influence
  2. Trinity: A False Doctrine of a False Church
  3. Part 2) God is not a Trinity
  4. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  5. Unitarianism and the Bible of the Holy Trinity
  6. Trinity: The Truth about Matthew 28:19 & 1 John 5:7
  7. Anyone Who Goes Too Far and Does Not Abide in the Teaching of Christ, Does Not Have God
  8. Is Jesus God?
  9. If the Father is the “only true God” (John 17:3) , does that mean that Jesus is a false god?
  10. Following Jesus’ Footsteps
  11. Massacre of children leaves many asking, ‘Where’s God?’

+++

  • Christ’s Humble Entrance into Jerusalem (biltrix.com)
    First, we have 2 Gospel readings today and in both of them, we identify with the crowds more so that in any other reading of the year. We begin by imitating the Jews in Jerusalem by processing into the church with palm branches while singing “Hosanna!” just like the crowds did when Jesus made his “Triumphant” entry into the city. Second, during the reading of the passion, we cry for Jesus to be crucified, just like those same crowds in Jerusalem.
    I believe the Church is trying to make a point here. Who’s the real sign of contradiction? Jesus, the crowds in Jerusalem, or us?
    +
    Have you ever tried to view this scene through the donkey’s eyes? Or hear it with his big ol’ donkey ears? Palm and olive branches, cloaks of different colors strewn all over the place, debris flying in the air, shouts and cheers… This was the biggest day of that donkey’s life! After that, he just went back to being a humble donkey.
    The lesson for today is so easily missed. It’s about humility. The donkey is there to remind us of that.
  • Palm Sunday – “o Gates, Lift High Your Heads” (prayers4reparation.wordpress.com)
  • Devotional 14.04.14 (thelifeofastrangercalledme.wordpress.com)
  • Palm/passion (prayersforeveryday.wordpress.com)
  • Blessed is He… (encourageandteach.wordpress.com)
  • Hosanna to Hallelujah (my52sundays.wordpress.com)
  • Palm Sunday 2014: Top Ten Quotes to Remember Jesus’ Triumphant Entry Into Jerusalem (ibtimes.co.uk)
    Scroll down to take a look at Top Ten Palm Sunday Quotes to mark the beginning of Holy Week.
    “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, daughter of Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you; righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” – Zechariah 9:9
    “Jesus found a donkey and sat upon it, as Scripture says: Do not fear, city of Zion! See, your king is coming, sitting on the colt of a donkey!” – John 12:14
    “Then I saw heaven opened and a white horse appeared. Its rider is the Faithful and True; he judges and wages just wars.”- Revelation 19:11
    “But Palm Sunday tells us that … it is the cross that is the true tree of life.” – Pope Benedict XVI
    “Ride on, ride on in majesty!
    In lowly pomp ride on to die;
    O Christ, thy triumphs now begin
    O’er captive death and conquered sin” – Henry Hart Milman
    “Palm Sunday is like a glimpse of Easter. It’s a little bit joyful after being sombre during Lent.” – Laura Gale
    “Lord, we lift up your name. With hearts full of praise; Be exalted, O Lord my God! Hosanna in the highest!” – Carl Tuttle
    “Palm Sunday’s thought; Life is full of ups and downs. Glorify God during the ups and fully trust in Him during the downs.” – Unknown
    “Have a blessed Palm Sunday. Remember a week before he was crucified like a criminal, he rode into the city a king.” – Unknown
  • Welcomed…but not Wanted (Mark 11:1-11) (graceportland.org)
    Centuries earlier, when Simon Maccabeus entered into Jerusalem after defeating the occupying Greeks, he entered with “…with thanksgiving, and branches of palm trees, and with harps, and cymbals, and with viols, and hymns, and songs: because there was destroyed a great enemy out of Israel.”  There was clearly a strong militaristic spirit in this crowd—they felt that their Messiah, the King, was coming to do battle with the Romans who occupied their beloved country.

 

 

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Christianity without the Trinity

Nicene Creed in cyrillic writing

Nicene Creed in cyrillic writing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Since the Council of Constantinople (381) the concept that God exists as three Persons in one Substance has been affirmed has formed a central part of the Christian confession. Though perhaps neglected in Protestant theology, the modern evangelical movement has given considerable emphasis to the doctrine of the Trinity as fundamental constituent of Christianity. Nevertheless a number of groups, including the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Christadelphians and the Church of God of the Abrahamic Faith, have from biblical foundations developed a trinity-less theology. In their book The Doctrine of the Trinity: Christianity’s Self-Inflicted Wound, Sir Anthony Buzzard and Charles Hunting presented the argument that the doctrine of the Trinity is both a misrepresentation of the biblical doctrine of God and a liability that weakens Christianity’s power.[1] The controversy caused by The Myth of God Incarnate opened up to scrutiny the doubts of ‘respectable’ theologians about the ideas surrounding the divinity of Christ.[2]

The question I wish to consider in this article is what would Christianity without the Trinity look like, and is such a Christianity desirable? This can only be a cursory survey of the issues involved nevertheless I hope that this review prompts a reconsideration of the centrality ascribed to the doctrine of the Trinity in Christian theology.

A Platonic Doctrine

English: Diagram of the Holy Trinity based on ...

Diagram of the Holy Trinity based on the Hebrew word רוח “air, wind, spirit” having feminine grammatical gender in the Hebrew language (though in fact in a significant minority of its occurrences in the Hebrew Bible, the word actually has masculine grammatical gender). Could be considered “non-orthodox” by the criteria of the traditional mainstream of Christian doctrine. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When theologians write about the doctrine of the Trinity they cite great luminaries like Augustine and Karl Barth, and, occasionally, the Bible.[3] But rarely will one pause to consider the theological pioneers of later Christian doctrine, such as the early apologists. Yet any scholar who deigns to do so will come against the awkward fact that the concept of a triune god is not Christian at all, but has the Platonists as its progenitors.[4] If Justin Martyr held a doctrine of three divine principles (First Apology 13), it is because Middle Platonists like Numenius of Apamea held this doctrine first. And the first thinker to propose three co-ordinate divine members of a trinity was not one of the Cappadocian Fathers[5] but a bitter enemy of Christianity, the Neo-Platonist Porphyry.[6]

The Platonic doctrine of a triune god is an imposition upon Christianity and an imposition that diverts Christianity from its original message and purpose. The simplicity of Christ’s teaching was supplanted by philosophic complexities that are seldom consistently defined. And thus too, the Bible was, in part, supplanted, because where in the Bible can one go to find theological definitions about the Trinity? It is noticeable that the Nicene Creed quotes verbatim from the New Testament regarding almost every aspect of belief except its definitions of the nature and trinity of God, where philosophic terms are supplied instead.[7]

A return to the teaching of Christ and the apostles would necessitate a reversal of the Platonic influence upon Christianity and thus require the revoking of the doctrine of Trinity.

The Role of Christ

In early Christian thought Christ was understood as a mediator. Paul writes ‘there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Jesus Christ’ (1 Tim 2:5). This relationship between to God and Jesus was seen through the role of high priest, Paul describing Christ as ‘making intercession’ for believers (Rom 8:34). Paul does not connect the intercession of Christ to any supposed divinity but to his ascension to the right hand of God. We find the same concept used in Acts when Peter says of Christ ‘God has exalted him to his right hand to be a prince and a saviour, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins’ (Acts 5:31).

The writer to the Hebrews makes this concept his own, repeatedly naming Jesus ‘High Priest’. As with Paul, this intercession is linked to the literal ascension of Jesus from the earth to the right hand of God, ‘passing into the heavens’, as the writer puts it (Heb 4:14). Christ’s entry into the presence of God is described as a high priest entering the Holy of Holies (Heb 9:11-12). And, unequivocally, Christ becomes High Priest, not by intrinsic divinity but by the calling of God (Heb 5:5-6, 10, 6:20).

Other early Christian writers also view Christ has a mediator between God and men. Clement of Rome describes Jesus as ‘High Priest’, saying that he was ‘chosen’ by God (1 Clem 64). Ignatius too uses the term ‘High Priest’ but also describes Christ’s intercession through another figure, saying ‘he is the doorway to the Father’ (Ign.Phil 9). Also see Polycarp’s letter to Smyrna, where he too says Christ is ‘High Priest’ (12).

If Christ is promoted to the Godhead (and the Holy Spirit too), who then intercedes on behalf of believers? Historically, this problem was ‘solved’ by the introduction of a series of other go-betweens, namely the Saints and the clergy. In modern evangelical theology can alternative ‘solution’ has been posited, namely that Christ, whilst ontologically co-equal with the Father, remains subordinate and can thus perform his scripturally defined duties of intercession.[8] Yet this fudge simply results in the conundrum that Jesus is neither fully co-equal, nor fully mediator.

Sola Scriptura

Luther Bible, 1534

Luther Bible, 1534 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The fifteenth and sixteenth centuries saw both the invention of the printing press and the translation of the Bible into the common tongues of the people of Europe. And following almost immediately on the heels of these developments was the emergence of groups that denied the doctrine of the Trinity. The Socinians, the Brüder in Christo and other unitarian groups were founded across Europe, teaching that the Bible alone was authoritative and that the Bible knew nothing of the Trinity. The problem for the Protestants was clear. The Reformation was founded on the principle of sola scriptura, and yet these groups, who also held the principle of sola scriptura, denied the doctrine of the Trinity.

English Protestant theologians wrestled with this problem throughout the seventeenth century. They urged that the believer needs both scripture and reason, and hoped that reason itself would be sufficient to safeguard the Trinity. Catholic theologians pounced upon the dilemma, challenging the Protestants to meet the objections of the Socinians by scripture alone or else return to the Catholic rule of faith.[9] The consequence of these disputes led English Protestants to neglect the doctrine of Trinity, passing over it in silence, a tacit admission that with scripture alone as the rule of faith the Trinity could not be sustained.[10]

Vickers bemoans the demise of the Trinity as the impact of an emphasis on the Trinity as a set of propositions (the immanent Trinity), and urges a return to the invocation of the Trinity in the believer’s encounter with God (the economic Trinity).[11] Yet, as Karl Rahner declares, the economic Trinity is the immanent Trinity; it would make little sense to invoke God as Trinity if that set of propositions cannot be assented to. Given then the failure of Protestant theologians to defend the doctrine of the Trinity by scripture alone, it seems we must either abandon the Trinity or the founding principle of the Reformation, sola scriptura.

Modern evangelicals attempt to hold both sola scriptura and the Trinity, and yet it seems no evangelical can preach about the Trinity without reference to the creeds.[12] Though evangelicals may claim that the bible alone is authoritative, there is implicit in many evangelical writings a retreat to tradition to defend the doctrine of the Trinity.

Interfaith Dialogue

Christianity is oft categorized as one of the three great monotheistic faiths, alongside Judaism and Islam. Yet the Trinitarian conception of monotheism is determinedly different from that of either Jews or Muslims. Inasmuch as the Trinity is three Persons in one Substance, the Trinitarian claim to monotheism is an ontological one. However, viewed from a liturgical perspective it is hard to escape the fact that Trinitarian Christians claim to experience God in plurality, worshipping three Persons as God. This feels very different from the Jewish experience of a uni-personal God, and seems to have more in common with Hinduism’s conception of Brahman.

The upshot of this is that in dialogue with other monotheistic faiths the Trinitarian brings to the table a plural conception of God. However carefully the theologian may define the Trinity ontologically as one God, the bread-and-butter of traditional Christian liturgy is hopelessly poly-personal. Christians may claim to be monotheists but they appear for all world to practice polylatry. This hampers interfaith dialogue (and ultimately evangelism).

The issue is not simply that Christians experience God differently from other faiths, but that they define God differently. Judaism, Christianity and Islam all claim to adherence to the God of Abraham, and yet the Trinitarian definition of God is simply alien to both Jews and Muslims (and, one must assume, would have been alien to Abraham himself). Therefore Christianity’s most primitive form of evangelism, preaching the coming of Jewish Messiah, is robbed from it by a doctrine that fundamentally alters the conception of the God of Abraham.

The Atonement

One proposition above any other motivates the continued emphasis on the doctrine of the Trinity in modern evangelical theology: that only God could be sufficient substitute to bear the punishment due to mankind. It therefore becomes necessary that Jesus was fully God to bring about the atonement and to question the Trinity is treated as tantamount to denying the salvation of believers.[13] Yet this doctrine of penal substitutionary atonement is a relatively new doctrine; it certainly did not motivate the doctrinal innovations that led to the formulation of the notion of the Trinity.

It is beyond the scope of this article to digress into a full rebuttal of the notion of penal substitutionary atonement but, in brief, there are at least two reasons why Christianity would be better off without such a doctrine.

Firstly, none of the New Testament writers appeal to the idea of a substitute to explain the atoning sacrifice of Christ. The analogy to the brazen serpent speaks of a representative icon (John 3:14-15); the analogy to the Passover lamb speaks of a representative offering (1 Cor 5:7); even the analogy to the Day of Atonement speaks of a representative death (Heb 9:11-14). The recapitulation theory that Paul develops at length (Rom 5:12-21; 1 Cor 15:20-22; Phil 2:5-11) knows nothing of a substitutionary death, rather an offering of obedience to God (Rom 5:19). Even the very words of the NT writers presuppose a representative understanding of the Christ’s death, using huper (‘on behalf of’) in preference to anti (‘instead of’) in almost every instance where the death of Christ is described (cf. Luke 22:19-20; John 6:51; Rom 5:6-8; 1 Cor 15:3; 2 Cor 5:14; Gal 1:4; Eph 5:2; 1 Thes 5:10; 1 Tim 2:6; Tit 2:14; 1 Pet 2:21; 1 John 3:16).[14]

Secondly, the notion of penal subtitutionary atonement skews our notion of God. The psalms describe a God who does not desire sacrifices (Ps 40:6; 51:16). Hosea states that God prizes mercy above sacrifice (Hos 6:6; cf. Matt 9:13, 12:7). The idea of a God who requires sacrifice as a prerequisite for mercy seems inconsistent with this picture. Rather the biblical concept of forgiveness is one without price or condition; the king in the parable, moved with compassion, writes off the debt of his servant without any requirement of some other source of remittance (Matt 18:22-27). Followers of Christ are instructed to forgive freely; are we then more righteous than God, who only forgives at cost? This notion would seem to annul the very idea of grace and portray God as limited and constricted by the requirements of Justice, unable to act freely upon His compassion. This is not the God of the Bible.

Christianity without the Trinity

Christ Church

Christ Church (Photo credit: Nathan Kavumbura)

There are some that feel that without the doctrines of the Trinity and of the incarnation Christianity is doomed to failure. It is claimed that robbing Christ of his divinity makes his message and mission of null affect, and ultimately leads to a denial of the atonement, the resurrection and miracles in general.[15] Unfortunately in some cases, such as the Unitarians (capital ‘U’), this has been the result, Jesus being treated as just a righteous teacher. However there is no reason why the reductive process of removing the doctrine of the Trinity from Christianity should be a purely negative process. Rather it is, I am arguing, a restoration of the primitive Christian faith.

What, then, would Christianity without the Trinity look like? A unitarian creed might look something like this:

  1. There is one God (Mark 12:32), who is the Creator of all things (Eph 4:6) and the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor 8:6; 2 Cor 1:3).
  2. There is one Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor 8:6; Eph 4:5), the Son of God (Rom 1:4) born of a virgin (Gal 4:4; Matt 1:23; Luke 1:27f), who lived a sinless life of obedience to God (2 Cor 5:21; 1 Pet 2:22; Rom 5:19), was crucified and rose the third day (1 Cor 15:3-4). Through his death Christ reconciled man to God (Rom 5:10).
  3. There is one Spirit (1 Cor 12:13; Eph 4:4), the power of God (Luke 1:35), by which God inspired the prophets (2 Pet 1:21) and works miracles (Gal 3:5).

What would Christianity without the Trinity feel like? It would feel more reminiscent of its Jewish roots, more consistent with its claims to monolatry, more reflective of scriptural language, and more intelligible to its adherents.

It has oft been claimed that those who deny the Trinity aren’t real Christians. Yet a ‘Christian’ (Greek christianos) by definition is a follower of Christ, and if this is to be anything more than a nominal title then those who claim to be Christian should follow Christ, in both his teaching and mode of life. Jesus Christ preached the God of Abraham (Matt 22:32) as his Father and as the one true God (John 17:3). Isn’t it time for the teaching of Christians to reflect the teaching of Christ?


[1] A. F. Buzzard & C. F. Hunting, The Doctrine of the Trinity: Christianity’s Self-Inflicted Wound (New York: International Scholars Publications, 1998).

[2] The Myth of God Incarnate (ed. J. Hick; London: SCM Press, 1977).

[3] Cf. M. A. McIntosh, Divine Teaching: An Introduction to Christian Theology (Oxford: Blackwell 2008), 111-178

[4] T. E. Gaston, The Influence of Platonism on the Early Apologists, The Heythrop Journal 50.4 (2009), 573-580.

[5] Pace I. S. Markham, Understanding Christian Doctrine (Oxford: Blackwell, 2008), 76-7.

[6] J. Dillon, ‘Logos and Trinity: Patterns of Platonist Influence on Early Christianity’, in The Philosophy in Christianity, (G. Vesey ed.; Cambridge University Press, 1989).

[7] E.g. “Light of Light, very God of very God”, “being of one substance with the Father”, etc.

[8] R. M. Bowman, Why you should believe in the Trinity (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1989), 78-81.

[9] J. E. Vickers, Invocation and Assent: The Making and Remaking of Trinitarian Theology, (Grand Rapinds: Eerdmans, 2008), 69-101.

[10] Vickers, Invocation and Assent, 165-7

[11] Vickers, Invocation and Assent, 191-2

[12] cf. S. Olyott, The Three are One (Darlington: Evangelical Press, 1979), 101-2; N. Gumbel [Alpha Course], Is the Trinity Unbiblical, Unbelievable and Irrelvant? (Eastbourne: Kingsway, 2004), 7;

[13] cf. J. I Packer, Knowing God (Leicester: IVP, 1984)166-170.

[14] The single exception to this rule is Matt 20:28 (cf. Mark 10:45), “to give his life a ransom for (anti) many”.

[15] Cf. Packer, Knowing God, 46+

Please do find to read:

  1. Did the Inspirator exist
  2. God, Creation and the Bible Hope
  3. God of gods
  4. A god between many gods
  5. Only One God
  6. God is One
  7. “Who is The Most High” ? Who is thee Eternal? Who is Yehovah? Who is God?
  8. The Divine name of the Creator
  9. God about His name “יהוה“
  10. Jehovah Yahweh Gods Name
  11. Sayings around God
  12. Attributes of God
  13. One God the Father, a compendium of essays
  14. Some one or something to fear #6 Faith in the Most High
  15. God Helper and Deliverer
  16. God is Spirit
  17. Praise the most High Jehovah God above all
  18. Praise and give thanks to God the Most Highest
  19. Lord or Yahuwah, Yeshua or Yahushua
  20. Yahushua, Yehoshua, Yeshua, Jehoshua of Jeshua
  21. Jesus begotten Son of God #12 Son of God
  22. Seeing Jesus
  23. Jesus Messiah
  24. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  25. Who was Jesus?
  26. Jesus spitting image of his father
  27. Jesus and his God
  28. Is Jesus God?Jesus and His God
  29. Jesus is the Son of God but Not God the Son
  30. How much was Jesus man, and how much was he God?
  31. On the Nature of Christ
  32. Jesus spitting image of his father
  33. Yeshua a man with a special personality
  34. A man with an outstanding personality
  35. Reasons that Jesus was not God
  36. The wrong hero
  37. He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. #1 Creator and His Prophets
  38. Jesus begotten Son of God #5 Apsotle, High Priest and King
  39. Jesus begotten Son of God #13 Pre-existence excluding virginal birth of the Only One Transposed
  40. Jesus begotten Son of God #14 Beloved Preminent Son and Mediator originating in Mary
  41. Jesus begotten Son of God #19 Compromising fact
  42. One Mediator
  43. Nazarene Commentary Luke 3:1, 2 – Factual Data
  44. A fact of History or just a fancy Story
  45. Politics and power first priority #2
  46. Politics and power first priority #3 Elevation of Mary and the Holy Spirit
  47. A promise given in the Garden of Eden
  48. 2 Corinthians 5:19 – God in Christ
  49. Christ Versus the Trinity
  50. Is God a Trinity?
  51. The Trinity – true or false?
  52. The Trinity – the Truth
  53. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  54. Trinity And Pagan Influence
  55. How did the Trinity Doctrine Develop
  56. How did the doctrine of the Trinity arise?
  57. History of the acceptance of a three-in-one God
  58. Questions for those who believe in the Trinity
  59. Altered to fit a Trinity
  60. Preexistence in the Divine purpose and Trinity
  61. The Great Trinity Debate
  62. TD Jakes Breaks Down the Trinity, Addresses Being Called a ‘Heretic’
  63. Compromise and accomodation
  64. Written to recognise the Promised One
  65. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  66. Do not be afraid. Good news because a Saviour has been born
  67. About a man who changed history of humankind
  68. No Other Name (But Jesus)
  69. Doesn’t the name “Immanuel” show that Jesus is God, and therefore proves the Trinity? (Isa. 7:14, Mat. 1:23)
  70. Is Isaiah 9:6′s “Wonderful counselor” related to Isaiah 7:14 and 8:8′s “Immanuel”?
  71. Why does Isaiah 9:6 call Jesus “Mighty God, Everlasting Father”?
  72. In the death of Christ, the son of God, is glorification
  73. One Mediator between God and man
  74. Philippians 1 – 2
  75. Worshipping Jesus
  76. Idolatry or idol worship
  77. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  78. People Seeking for God 4 Biblical terms
  79. Patriarch Abraham, Muslims, Christians and the son of God
  80. Science and God’s existence
  81. Science, belief, denial and visibility 1
  82. Blackness, nothingness, something, void
  83. Being Religious and Spiritual 5 Gnostic influences
  84. Joseph Priestley To the Point
  85. Hanukkahgiving or Thanksgivvukah
  86. Not all christians are followers of a Greco-Roman culture
  87. Thanksgivukkah and Advent
  88. The professor, God, Faith and the student
  89. Concerning gospelfaith
  90. Creator and Blogger God 7 A Blog of a Book 1 Believing the Blogger
  91. Apologetics (23) – The Hard Questions: Which God? The Exclusivity Issue (7) The Resurrection and Exclusivity
  92. Pluralis Majestatis in the Holy Scriptures
  93. Finding and Understanding Words and Meanings
  94. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #10 Prayer #8 Condition
  95. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  96. Edward Wightman
  97. Focus on Jehovah’s Witnesses
  98. Book of Mormon (5): God and Jesus
  99. The Book of Mormon: (7) Right First Principles are Essential to Getting it Right
  100. What the Qur’an Says About…(2): Jesus
  101. Creation’s Gospel: (12) The Veiled Glory

+++

Additional reading:

  1. Trinity And Pagan Influence
  2. Trinity: A False Doctrine of a False Church
  3. Part 2) God is not a Trinity
  4. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  5. Unitarianism and the Bible of the Holy Trinity
  6. Trinity: The Truth about Matthew 28:19 & 1 John 5:7
  7. Anyone Who Goes Too Far and Does Not Abide in the Teaching of Christ, Does Not Have God
  8. Is Jesus God?

+++

Also of interest:

  1. Trinity Proof Texts Considered
  2. Unitarianism and the Bible of the Holy Trinity
  3. Can Genuine Christians Be Trinitarian or Non-Trinitarian?
  4. Trinity Doctrine vs Oneness Pentecostalism Doctrine – Berean Perspective Podcast
  5. The Unholy Trinity
  6. The Trinity: A Fundamental of the Faith or a Fable?
  7. Trinity And Pagan Influence
  8. Jesus Christ and God – Some Basic Considerations
  9. The Trinity – A Doctrine Overdue for Extinction
  10. What About Those Who Do Not Know The Name of God?
  11. The Existence of Jesus Christ
  12. The Doctrine Of The Trinity
  13. The Top Ten Most Important Church Councils
  14. Cult or True Religion
  15. Reimagining the Historicity of the Bible
  16. Bishop T. D. Jakes says he now embraces the Trinity Doctrine: T. D. Jakes was interviewed by pastor Mark Driscoll and pastor James MacDonald on January 27, 2012 at Harvest Bible Chapel
  17. TD Jakes Breaks Down the Trinity, Addresses Being Called a ‘Heretic’ By Nicola Menzie
  18. T.D. Jakes is Heretical Concerning Modalism Whether he Believes it or Not
  19. Changed Heart for @StevenFurtick & @BishopJakes: Conviction in The #ElephantRoom. Lessons for dads?
  20. An Elephant Room Roundup
  21. Mark Driscoll And The Mars Hill Churches: When Discipline Becomes Control Becomes … ?
  22. Heretical Modalism and T.D. Jakes Doctrine On the Trinity
  23. The Leader of the Episcopal Church is a Heretic
  24. Critiquing N.T. Wright’s monotheism
  25. God, the Trinity
  26. This Is That – 1
  27. Dwell
  28. A brief visit to the Father of Revolution and Evolution
  29. Who Are You Really Slandering?
  30. On Union with God
  31. By the oaks of Mamre

+++

  • Nineteenth Century Protestant Doctrines of the Trinity (redeemingthetext.wordpress.com)
    The discussion in chapter nineteen of The Oxford Handbook of the Trinity is, in brief form, one of how Enlightenment philosopher-theologians developed innovative ways to discuss the Trinity and their effectiveness leading into the twentieth century.
    +
    Immanuel Kant, a German Idealist continuing the exegesis of the Socinians, saw no need for the doctrine of the Trinity. It was this idea of “necessity” mixed with speculative interpretation that led many like Kant to dismiss it altogether. Questions addressing God’s being, volition, and self-consciousness brought to light some of the supposed weak spots in the Trinitarian doctrine. Not being convinced scripturally of the nature or the necessity of the Trinity, nineteenth-century theologians turned to philosophy to answer their questions. Powell describes it as providing “philosophical answers with expressly Trinitarian features (269).” This move loosened the shackles of theological presuppositions and creedal traditions. Nineteenth-century theology was freed to philosophically construct a new horizon for the doctrine of God. Powell examines four prominent figures to structure his argument.
  • Hans Kung on Trinity Part 2 (presenttruthmn.org)
    This is continued from the previous post on the Trinity. It is taken directly from Hans Kung’s book ‘Christianity: Essence, History and Future’

    All this should have made it clear that according to the New Testament the key quesiton in the doctrine of the Trinity is not the question which is declared an impenetrable ‘mystery’ (mysterium stricte dictum), how three such different entities can be ontologically one, but the christological question how the relationship of Jesus (and consequently also of the Spirit) to God is to be expressed. Here the belief in the one God which Christianity has in common with Judaism and Islam may not be put in question for a moment. There no other God but God! But what is decisive for the dialogue with Jews and Christians in particular is the insight that according to the New Testament the principle of unity is clearly not the one divine ‘nature’ (physis) common to several entities, as people were to think after the ne0-Nicene theology of the fourth century. For the New Testament, as for the Hebrew Bible, the principle of unity is clearly the one God (ho theos: the God = the Father), from whom are all things and to whom are all things.

  • A Theology Big Enough for the Gospel: Reviewing Mike Bird’s Evangelical Theology (marccortez.com)
    despite the fact that Bird mentions the image of God throughout, clearly viewing it as an important topic that has bearing on a range of other issues, he devotes only five pages to it, one of which is just a recitation of the relevant biblical verses. His excursus on infra- vs. supralapsarianism is almost as long! And union with Christ hardly gets any attention at all. In a systematic theology, pages are like currency; what you invest in shows what you value. And I was surprised at a few of the investments.
    +
    Bird affirms a social trinitarian approach, defining the divine persons as “self-aware” beings who are “capable of consciousness” (p. 615), and he even refers to separate consciousnesses in the Trinity (p. 118). Regardless of whether you think social trinitarianism is viable, Bird’s discussion simply fails to deal with the historical and theological objections that can (and have!) been raised. And unfortunately, these aren’t isolated incidents.
  • What’s Old is New Again: The Return of “Biblical Unitarianism” (southernreformation.wordpress.com)
    While I’m used to defending the deity of Christ against the Jehovah’s Witnesses, or fending off Mormon misunderstandings of the doctrine of the Trinity, I never thought I would see professing “conservative evangelicals” who were willing to jettison the central dogma that makes Christianity…Christianity.But it’s happening.

    I can name at least three churches in my immediate area (i.e., within 25 miles of my home) who have either had to turn away prospective new members because they wouldn’t affirm the Nicene formulation of the doctrine of the Trinity, or who have only found out that a new member denied the Trinity after the individual had already been received as a member (in this case, it was kept hidden from the elders).

    What’s more, I know of at least two seminary students (at Presbyterian and Reformed seminaries, no less!) who have informed their professors that they don’t out and out deny the Nicene Creed, but they’re not sure they can affirm it, either.

  • “Should You Believe in the Trinity?” (1peter58.wordpress.com)
    “The Bible says…” The real issue here is that these individuals, and also those that belong to very young churches/institutes, claim for themselves the authority to teach new doctrine, claim for themselves the authority to reject unchanged ancient doctrine. How do you decide when to trust that a doctrine is truly of God? How do you decide what is a false doctrine not of God?
  • Theophany, Epiphany and the Holy Trinity (orthodoxmom3.wordpress.com)
    Giving recognition to the Holy Trinity is an important aspect of the Holy Orthodox Church.  When we pray we make the sign of the cross.  The thumb and first two fingers represent the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. The bringing of these three fingers together signifies that we do not believe in three gods, only ONE GOD.  Everything we do is in the name of the trinity: baptism, forgiveness, marriage, the confession of our faith (Nicene Creed) etc. The Trinity expresses the essence of our faith.  The work of salvation begins with the Father who created the world, is realized by the Son through His death and resurrection, and is completed through the Holy Spirit at Pentecost.
  • Because the Bible Tells Me So (mackerelsnapperblog.wordpress.com)
    Whenever a Catholic debates the Faith with a non-Catholic — Christian or atheist — the very first argument that often gets brought up is that Catholic teaching contradicts the Scriptures.

    “Catholics believe (X), but (X) isn’t in the Bible”

    First off, let me put this out there and get it over with — Catholics do not believe in the doctrine of Sola Scriptura, which translates to “Scripture alone.” Unlike many Protestant beliefs, Catholics do not accept the Bible as the highest authority on doctrine. This may sound like a heresy to some, but it isn’t. The Church isn’t derived from the Bible. In fact it’s quite the opposite. It is precisely because of the Catholic Church that the Bible even exists

  • Sola Scriptura? (preacheroftruth.com) + > Sola Scriptura?
    Pythagoras is said to have been the earliest outside of Scripture (Isa. 40:22) to contend that the earth is round. He did not make the earth round with his assertions, but identified what already was.  Sir Isaac Newton certainly did not create gravity, but he is credited for our modern understanding of it.  Likewise, the term “sola scriptura” is not found in scripture (similar to terms like “trinity” and “omniscience”), but it was coined during the “Reformation Movement” as part of Martin Luther’s protests against perceived corruptions of the Catholic Church.  It was a “Latin phrase (literally ‘by Scripture alone’) describing the Protestant theological principle that Scripture is the final norm in all judgments of faith and practice.
    +
    Scripture is God-breathed, making one spiritually complete (2 Tim. 3:16-17).  If Scripture is sufficient, what need is there for anything beyond it?  On what basis would we accept anything more or less than or different from the Bible?  How could fallible man be equal to or co-authorize with the perfect law of the Lord?  Let us accept no substitute or rival to the Bible!
  • (1) The Two Pillars of the Reformation (altruistico.wordpress.com)
    The Protestant Reformation saw the advancement of the Gospel and an understanding of right doctrine that hadn’t been seen since the time of Christ and the Apostles. It drew Christianity out of the dark ages of the faith; a time when the Scripture was forbidden to be read in the language of the people, when superstition reigned, where abominations within the church leadership was a norm, and when a knowledge of the Truth was virtually unknown. But to the glory of God, He rekindled the fire of the Gospel, and it spread like a fire in a barn of hay. The Reformation has given us such a wealth of knowledge of the truth of Christ’s teaching that I personally will never be able to ingest all of.
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