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LET GOD BE TRUE



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CHAPTER VII

IS THERE A TRINITY?

A FUNDAMENTAL doctrine of the so-called "Organized Religion" is that known as the "Holy Trinity". It is accepted as Scriptural truth and held sacred by millions of men and women. The doctrine, in brief, is that there are three gods in one: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost, all three equal in power, substance and eternity. As defined by the Catholic Encyclopedia under the heading "Trinity, The Blessed", "The Trinity is the term employed to signify the central doctrine of the Christian religion  —  ... in the unity of the Godhead there are Three Persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, these Three Persons being truly distinct one from another. Thus, in the words of the Athanasian Creed: 'The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God, and yet there are not three Gods, but one God.'"

2 Such a doctrine, with the explanation thereof, is very confusing, and to excuse it with the word "mystery" is not satisfying. If one has in mind the apostle's words that "God is not the author of confusion" (1 Corinthians 14:33), it


1. Define the "trinity" doctrine.
2. What points are raised that are cause for doubt as to God's being the author of the doctrine?
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is at once seen that such doctrine is not of God. Well, one might ask, if God is not the author of this confusing doctrine, who is?

3 The origin of the "trinity" doctrine is traced back to the ancient Babylonians and Egyptians, and other ancient mythologists. It will not be disputed by Jews and Christians that these ancient nations worshiped demon gods, and that God's typical nation of Israel was warned not to mingle with them because of this fact. It follows, then, that God was not the author of this doctrine. Two more interesting facts are: First, a religionist living in the second century, by the name of Tertullian, located in Carthage, Africa, introduced the term "Trinitas" into Latin ecclesiastical writings, the term "trinity" not once being used in the inspired Scriptures. Second, the doctrine was first introduced into "Organized Religion" by a clergyman named Theophilus, also living in the second century. In the year 325 (A.D.) a council of clergymen met at Nice in Asia Minor and confirmed the doctrine. It was later declared to be the doctrine of the religious organization of "Christendom", and the clergy have ever held to this complicated doctrine. The obvious conclusion, therefore, is that Satan is the originator of the "trinity" doctrine.

4 One might ask, What about the scriptures cited to support the "trinity"? Would they not


3. Where did the "trinity" originate, and how did it find its way into the "Christian religion"?
4. What question, as to proof, arises? and why should the subject be frankly considered?
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prove the doctrine as taught by the clergy to be different from the "trinity" of ancient Babylon? Every honest and God-fearing person wants to know the facts. He realizes knowledge is a defense against error and that to gain such knowledge both sides of an argument must be frankly considered. To this end let us turn our attention to the main scriptures used to support the "trinity" doctrine.

5 First the text appearing at 1 John 5:7, King James Version and Douay Version, reads, "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one." Another, John 10:30, which simply states, "I and my Father are one." A third, the words of Paul regarding Christ Jesus, at 1 Timothy 3:16: "God was manifest in the flesh." And, fourth, the well-known text at John 1:1, to wit, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."

6 When the clergy are asked by their followers as to how such a combination of three in one can possibly exist, they will generally answer, "That is a mystery." Some will try to illustrate it by using triangles, trefoils, or images with three heads on one neck. Nevertheless, God-fearing persons who want to know Jehovah and serve him find it a bit difficult to love and worship a complicated, freakish-looking, three-headed God. The clergy who inject


5. Cite four texts commonly used as support for the "trinity".
6. How do the clergy try to uphold the "trinity"? and how might the thoughtful person react to their explanation?
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such ideas will contradict themselves in the very next breath by stating that God created man in his own image; and certainly no one has ever seen a three-headed human creature.

DISPROVED

7 The position taken by true Christians is, "Let God be true, but every man a liar." (Romans 3:4) The standard being, "Every word of God is pure" (Proverbs 30:5; Psalm 12:6), and since the scriptures here quoted are from God's pure Word, the Bible, it is vital that they be given careful attention. With this thought in mind let us consider 1 John 5: 7, "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."

8 Here is a glaring example of adding to the Word of God; which adding is expressly condemned. In commenting on this text, a noted Greek scholar, Benjamin Wilson, writes in his The Emphatic Diaglott, "This text concerning the heavenly witness is not contained in any Greek manuscript which was written earlier than the fifteenth century. It is not cited by any of the Greek ecclesiastical writers; nor by any of the early Latin fathers, even when the subjects upon which they treated would naturally have led them to appeal to its authority. It is therefore evidently spurious." The truthfulness of this statement is borne out by the fact that


7. What position do true Christians take? and why?
8. What are the two facts regarding 1 John 5: 7 that make it unnecessary for further comment?
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the modern versions (except Roman Catholic versions) do not include the text.

9 The next scripture for consideration is that of John 10:30, "I and my Father are one." Reading this text in an abstract setting one would surely be justified in arguing that God and Jesus were one; but, Jehovah counsels, "Get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding." (Proverbs 4:7) This rule must always be applied, and no less in the present case. Jesus himself explains what is meant at John 10:30, in his prayer to the Father on the night before his execution: "Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one." (John 17:20-22) Jesus was praying for those who would become members of his body, the church. The apostle supports this thought, at 1 Corinthians 12:12: "As the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ." Illustrating this point the apostle writes, "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body." (Ephesians 5:23) And now tying Jehovah in


9. (a) What rule must always be applied when considering the Bible? (b) How does Jesus explain the meaning of John 10:30, and how does the apostle show he understood it so?
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as Head over all, the apostle writes further, "That the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." (1 Corinthians 11:3) The plain truth reveals itself, that is, just as Christ and his body members are regarded as one, so are Jehovah and Christ regarded as one. They are all one in agreement, purpose and organization. If this were not the logical conclusion Jesus would never have said, "My Father is greater than I" (John 14:28), and therefore, "Not my will, but thine, be done." (Luke 22:42) Hence, all, including Jesus, are in complete subjection to the great Head, Almighty God.

10 The claim that God Almighty was manifested in the flesh to men on this earth as argued by the clergy brings up the text at 1 Timothy 3:16, which states, "God was manifest in the flesh." Says a footnote in The Emphatic Diaglott, by Benjamin Wilson, on this passage, verse 16: "Nearly all the ancient manuscripts, and all the versions have 'He who,' instead of 'God,' in this passage. This has been adopted." The translation, word for word from the Greek, reads, "Who was manifested in flesh." The American Standard uses "He who"; other versions use the word "which". If this had been Almighty God incarnated, and which it would have to be if the "trinity" were true, then these words of John would be false: "No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son,


10. Does 1 Timothy 3:16 prove Almighty God was made manifest in the flesh?
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which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him." (John 1:18) However, these words make clear the fact that Jesus, being at complete unity with the Father, was able to manifest or declare him, both in word and in deed, before all men while in the flesh. Hence Jesus said: "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father." — John 14: 9.

11 David, speaking under inspiration, describes man as being made "a little lower than the angels". In Hebrews 2:9 we find the very same words describing Jesus, "But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death." If the "trinity" doctrine is true, then God was lower than the angels while on earth; which is contrary to his supremacy. Yet we know that Jesus came to earth to provide a ransom by his perfect human life. The ransom, therefore, must be equal to the loss, namely, perfect life as Adam had it in Eden. Of Jesus it is written, "who, though being in God's form, yet did not meditate a usurpation to be like God, but divested himself, taking a bondman's form, having been made in the likeness of men; and being in condition as a man, he humbled himself." (Philippians 2:6-8, Emphatic Diaglott) The justice of God would not permit that Jesus, as a ransom, be more than a perfect man; and certainly not be the supreme God Almighty in the flesh.


11. Why could not Jesus while on the earth be God?
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12 The final text under consideration as to supporting the "trinity" is that of John 1:1: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." To eliminate any seeming contradiction let us refer to the word-for-word translation as it appears in the interlineary reading of The Emphatic Diaglott. It reads, "In a beginning was the Word, and the Word was with the God, and a god was the Word." Note, if you will, the clause, "The Word was with the God." The word "God" is written as a proper noun in this instance, with the article "the" before it, while in the following phrase, "and a god was the Word," you will note "god" is written as a common noun. Also the article "a" being included in the latter phrase proves that two persons are spoken of as being with each other, and not two persons as being one and the same God.

13 Sober thinking upon this text will bring other enlightening facts to mind. It will be recalled that 'God is from everlasting to everlasting'. (Psalm 90: 2) If this is true, then how could the Word, if the God, have a beginning? The truth of the matter is that the Word is Christ Jesus, who did have a beginning; because, at Revelation 3:14, he distinctly states that he was the beginning of the creation of God. That is why he is spoken of as the "only begotten" of the Father. John 1:14 reads, "And


12. How do the wording and grammatical construction of John 1:3 show that two separate persons are spoken of?
13. How does Jesus' origin disprove the "trinity" instead of supporting it?
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the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." The apostle Paul sustains this truth when he speaks of Jesus as "the firstborn of every creature". (Colossians 1:15) Again the "trinity" teachers must defend themselves by stating, "It's a mystery."

THE HOLY SPIRIT

14 Thus far nothing has been said about "the Holy Ghost, the third person of the trinity", which is supposed to be equal with God and with Christ in power, substance and eternity. In the four scriptures erroneously quoted as supporting the "trinity", only the first one included the "Holy Ghost", and it was found to be spurious. The general thought of the "Holy Ghost" is that of its being a spirit person. The simple truth regarding it is that the Greek word for spirit is mistranslated ghost. A little searching of any Greek-English dictionary will reveal that the Greek word translated "spirit" is the same root word translated in other parts of the Bible as "breath", "wind," or "breeze". Just as the wind and breath are invisible to man, so is the spirit of God. When a man has the spirit of God upon him it means he has been authorized by God to do a certain work, whatever that work may be. The holy spirit is the invisible active force of Almighty God that moves his servants to do his will.


14. What are the facts regarding the "third person" of the so-called "trinity", and what actually is it?
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15 For the sake of argument, let us assume that God and Jesus were one in equality, power and eternity during the time Jesus was on the earth, up until he was baptized. Where was the third person of the "trinity", the "Holy Ghost"? Without thinking the religionists will state they were all three in one throughout that period. But is it not true that the record states that at the time of Jesus' baptism the spirit descended upon Jesus like a dove, and straightway Jesus was led away by it? Trinitarians will say that all three persons of the "trinity" were clearly in evidence on that occasion, as noted by the text at Matthew 3:16,17: "Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: and, lo, a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." However, the Trinitarian teachers will have several embarrassing questions to answer on this text, such as, Whose voice came from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son? His own voice? Where had the "Holy Ghost" or spirit been, which was just now descending upon Jesus? And were not the heavens open to Jesus during the previous thirty years of his earthly sojourn? Surely if this was God or a part of a "trinity" equal in power, substance and eternity with God he would always have access to the heavens. These


15. What occurred at Jesus' baptism that raises questions to disprove the "trinity"?
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and other equally embarrassing questions have convinced the clergy that it is far better to say it is all a great mystery.

16 We agree it would be a mystery if the "trinity" doctrine were true. One of the most mysterious things is the question of who ran the universe during the three days that Jesus was dead and in the grave; or, for that matter, during his thirty-three and one-half years on the earth while made "a little lower than the angels". If Jesus was God, then during Jesus' death God was dead and in the grave. What a wonderful opportunity for Satan to take complete control! But the mere fact that he could not do so proves that it was the only begotten Son, and he alone, that was dead. The Scriptures state that God "only hath immortality"; therefore, if Jesus was the immortal God, he could not have died. During Jesus' earthly course the Devil had expended every effort to bring about his death; and now, surely, after he had finally succeeded, he would not permit his resurrection if it was Almighty God that was dead. How inconsistent it all is, according to the "trinity"!

17 Again we are reminded of Jesus' words, "My Father is greater than I." That means "greater" not only as to office but also as to person. Faithful to his promise, the Father resurrected his Son on the third day. If Jeho-


16. What complications as to rulership would have arisen if Jesus was God Almighty while on the earth?
17. What text is cited to argue that Jesus had the power to resurrect himself? but what is the correct conclusion to be drawn?
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vah and the dead Christ were one in substance, the resurrection would have been impossible. The religionists will cite the scripture quoting Jesus' words at John 10:18, "No man taketh it [my life] from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father." Thus they hope to prove that Jesus "as God" was able to resurrect himself. However, the logical conclusion, even from the King James rendering, is that Jesus willingly laying down his life was assured by the Father's commandment that he would be resurrected and given life again. He took back life when God gave it to him by resurrection. The Emphatic Diaglott reads, "No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have Authority to lay it down, and I have Authority to receive it again. This commandment I received from my Father." The reads, "I have power to take it again" while the marginal reference uses the word "right" instead of power. This makes it clear that by obedience to God's will Jesus voluntarily laid down his life in ransom, and as reward for faithfulness he had the right to receive life again at the hands of the Father through His resurrecting him.

18 The "trinity" doctrine was not conceived by Jesus or the early Christians. Nowhere in the Scriptures is even any mention made of a


18. What two strange facts stand out regarding this doctrine? and what is the plain truth of the whole matter?
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"trinity". Therefore, if, as claimed, it is "the central doctrine of the Christian religion", it is passing strange that this complicated and confusing doctrine received no attention by Christ Jesus, by way of explanation or teaching. Stranger still that imperfect men living over a hundred years later should have the idea injected into their religion by heathens and should teach it as Scriptural truth. The plain truth is that this is another of Satan's attempts to keep the God-fearing person from learning the truth of Jehovah and his Son, Christ Jesus.



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