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Trinitarian Doctrine

Discussion in 'Paterology, Christology & Pneumatology' started by jbenjesus, Mar 7, 2002.

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  1. dnich163

    dnich163 dnich163

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    Hi there ibnj..

    I put forward the theory of myself as an analogy.

    Even if I am 6 people, I am still only one person.
    The question is how can I be 6 and 1 at the same time ?
    I still have one mind , one body, one life to live etc.

    I think this is the kind of idea at the root of the parable about the vine and the branches. We are all part of the one tree.

    The wording of the creed is very deliberate to try and use the words we have to explain the Trinity.
    We actually run out of words to use to explain this, and this is perhaps a big part of the problem.

    When faced with an issue that is hard to perhaps make clear easy enough, we tend to throw lots of words in order to convince the other that we are right and have the knowledge.

    "If" God is spirit, then he can't be man.... or can he ?

    "If" Jesus is a manifestation of God in human form, does this make him separate or different from God.

    Would you not say that while it changes the way we see him, that it may not change the way we perceive or know him ?

    If I see Jesus in my homeless brother on the streets, or my prostituted sister on the other side of the street, is this Jesus different or just a different form ?

    The favourite Theologian/Philosopher of the Pope is Hans Ur Von Balthasar.

    One of his great sayings was that there is always that element of Theology that "needs to be done on one's knees", it is beyond our understanding and we need faith for this.

    Sorry to ramble on.
    All the best.
    David
     
  2. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "The reason it is capitalized in your English Bible is because that is how the translators interpreted said word."

    Umm jben...yeah, because in the context it means something special. The reason he is called Son of God and not son of God is very significant. know the reason?
     
  3. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    The point is, LouisBooth, you can't attach any special significance to a captial letter in the English bible, when originally there was no special significance added to it in the original manuscripts. You can only read and interpret it in its context. Not because it has a capital letter. That's all I'm saying.

    Your reference could be interpreted as referring to a theophany of God before His incarnation and that that theophany looked like the son of a man. But I don't believe this because I see a capital letter. I see this because I have read how God has appeared many times in the past to different men of the Old Covenant and sometimes they referred to Him as man, even though they spoke to Him as God. ;)
     
  4. LouisBooth

    LouisBooth Well-Known Member

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    "The point is, LouisBooth, you can't attach any special significance to a captial letter in the English bible, when originally there was no special significance added to it in the original manuscripts. "

    I would say the context of the passage and word usage inplies that it was a special title. Psalms 2 goes on to elaborate on it as well as the cultural context of the title.
     
  5. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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    Trinity Doictrine agrees with you.

    Trinity Doctrine agrees here as well. For the TD sates that Jesus was and is God.

    Also, you stated "another person".. so who was the original in your statement? If Jesus Chrsit was not "another person" what "person" was he, according to your statement?

    I thought you said the Trinity is partially unbelievable because Trinitarians answer that "it is becasue it is", and can't explain it because it is a mystery. Shall I say the same about your oneness Doctrine?

    So, you have replaced one mystery with another. I am fine with mysteries by the way. It was who who said a mystery in an explination invalidates the explination.

    Pause for amoment and think: Why woul John need to say "God was God"? And what is the logic of saying "God was with God"?

    Trinity Doctrine states something similar.. that Jesus had two natures. Divine (being God) and natural (being man).
     
  6. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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  7. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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    I see you were very thorough in your copy/paste.. :D

    Also, I am sorry for using the term "philosophy" it is a misuage of the word. I should have said "Oneness Doctrine".

    About the Doctrine.. I disagree with it because it says thta Jesus did nlot exist as the So of GOd until his birth.

    I disagree with it for the opposition it has to the Trinity Doctrine, just as you disagree with the Trinity Doctrine for the opposition it has to the Oneness Doctrine.

    That aside, my question has gone un-answered: Who was Jesus tlaking to when he said "My God, My God..."

    Am I to beleive it is the position of the Oneness Doctrine that He was tlkaing to himself? Or that His SPirit left His body, so they could have a chat?

    PLease just answer who, accpridng to the Oneness Doctrine. One word answer I would think.. maybe two...
     
  8. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    I've quoted from many different places from this book. Yes.

    If you would like, I could use other quotes from other authors. When I have had the time, I've tried to express in my own words many of the things that Bernard affirms, and have done that a lot. When I run out of time or I can tell I just don't have the time, I'll quote from Bernard. I've read his book and highly recommend it to others to have a proper understanding of the Oneness doctrine.

    To read the book online for free anyone can go to this site:

    The Oneness of God, by David K. Bernard, J.D.
    I think I gave you this information before in another thread. If not, here it is.

     
  9. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    Correct me if I’m wrong, but does not the TD state that Jesus was the 2nd person of the trinity that came in the flesh? The second person being the Son of God? That was my understanding.

    The mystery of God Himself coming the flesh in only a mystery to those who have a veil over there eyes and cannot and do not accept Jesus. But for those that have come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, that which was a mystery from eons past, has now been revealed in the manifestation of Jesus Christ – God come in the flesh. To us who are in the kingdom, it is no longer a mystery, but for ages past it was a mystery that even the prophets and angels desired to witness with their own eyes – the invisible, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient, unlimitable, and infinite God enrobed Himself in finite flesh to redeem all mankind.

    Romans 16:25-27 - Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen.

    Jesus Christ, the manifestation of God Himself come in the flesh, was the mystery that only God knew, for it was in His mind and was a part of His plan before He ever began to create anything. He created all things with His manifestation in mind from beforehand. If that mystery was known to the people in the days of His flesh, they would never have crucified Him for they would have know that they were crucifying the God and promised Savior-Messiah.

    I Corinthians 2:7,8 - But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory: Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

    The revelation of Jesus Christ has been revealed to us by His Spirit. What the prophets of old did not understand but sought and inquired after concerning, has now been revealed by the Spirit to His apostles and prophets of the New Covenant in His blood, through the gospel of Jesus Christ to redeem man from their sin.

    Ephesians 3:3-6 - How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto His holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit ; That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:

    Not only is the mystery revealed to His holy apostles and prophets, but for those that have trusted and obeyed the gospel of Jesus Christ, it has also been revealed…

    Colossians 1:26,27 - Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

    Therefore, this mystery was a tremendously great mystery secreted from eons past that only God knew - that He would manifest Himself in the flesh, to save all mankind through His own sacrifice, through His own blood. This is the mystery.

    I Timothy 3:16 – And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit…

    It doesn’t say "great is the mystery of the trinity godhead". It says the mystery of godliness. Godliness can also be translated holiness. The word in the greek is eusebeia which means reverence, respect, piety towards God. This mystery spoken of here was God (holiness) coming in the flesh.

    God humbled himself in an almost incomprehendable way (if not for the revelation of Jesus Christ :D) by coming in the form of a man. He made Himself of no reputation. Made Himself in the likeness of man, fashioned (enrobed) just as a man in all ways. God exalted His manifestation in the flesh with a name that is above all other names He previously manifest to Israel – Jesus. So that when all mouths confess Jesus is Lord, it will be to the glory of God the Father, for the Father was in Him to begin with. That’s why all the glory will go to His divinity, if you will, rather than His flesh (humanity).

    Philippians 2:6-11 - Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

    Jesus Christ was like no other man to have ever existed. He was fully man. Bled like man, sweated like man, hungered and thirsted like man. In every way Jesus Christ was a man like all of us. But unlike all of us He was God pertaining to His divinity. He overcome all things by His Deity, the Spirit of God, that indwelt His flesh.

    COL 1:19; 2:9 - For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;… For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.

    I Peter 2:21,22 - For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:


    Which is why He is such a perfect example to us, that we can overcome sin, temptation, death, and all obstacles put in our path, by the Holy Spirit that has taken residence in us, His grace. Even though he was fully man like we are, He overcame by His Spirit. God cannot be tempted with sin. Yet Jesus was tempted. This refers to His humanity being tempted, just as we are tempted today, yet Christ never sinned for His humanity always yielded to His Spirit, the will of the Father.
     
  10. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    my quote:
    I don’t know where your coming up with this. I plainly said, scriptures do not refer to a mystery of 3 in 1 in the Godhead. There is no mystery referred by scripture regarding the Godhead. You wanna' quote me so I know where you are coming from or did you paraphrase?

    You can’t hold to one verse in scritpure and make a full and complete doctrine out of it to walk in. Look also in a book that John also wrote, I John 1, and you see that God was the Word (of Life) that He had spoken of that came in the flesh. John never teaches or preaches a trinity god.

    Please allow me the liberty of answering in as many words as I see fit. I don't put restrictions on your form of expression.

    You said, “Trinity Doctrine states something similar.. that Jesus had two natures. Divine (being God) and natural (being man).” If you fully understand and realize what that means, than you understand that it was the nature of His humanity to say that, to pray that, and to seek after Him. I listed many scriptures that talk about the difference of His humanity and Deity. They are distinguishable, but not inseparable.

    You could also ask the question, “Well, did God die?” We know God can’t die. It’s just impossible for Him to die, but His flesh (humanity) did die (see I Peter 3:18) and His Deity remained what it always was/is immutable, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, infinite, and so on and so forth. If you can accept and understand this explanation, then you can understand how/why Jesus cried out to the Father, prayed, sweated, ate, drank, went to the bathroom, bled, cried and so on and so forth. What you are doing is distinguishing between His humanity and His Deity.

    By the way, I know we are discussing this together, but Rjano21 and Tyler did answer this question as well, in their own words using scritpure.
     
  11. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    Well, the term "eternal Son" in the scriptures is never used, so we don't use it either.

    However, we do find the term "begotten son" in John 3:16. This word in the greek means single of its kind and used of only sons or daughters. Sons and daughters have a definitive beginning because they must be born.

    Jesus was born, was He not? And if He was born, then He must have started to exist as a man at His concpetion in Mary's womb and consequent birth. There is His beginning. His humanity began at His birth. The "Son of God" was not eternal. His very birth (humanity) contradicts His eternality.

    The role of the Son of God began at His birth. He was born of a virgin woman. Galations 4:4 is says the Son came in the "fulness of time". In God's divinely appointed time, He manifested Himself in the flesh and the role of the Son began - to redeem mankind and destroy the works of the devil.

    Psalm 2:7 says, "...this day have I begotten thee" in reference to the Son. So He started on some day. "The Son" is not spoken of as eternal. See also acts 13:33, Isaiah 7:14 and 9:6. These all refer to the birth of the promised Messiah "the Son" and they speak of His beginning starting when He is birthed of a virgin.

    When I speak of "the Son of God" I am speaking of God's incaration in the flesh as the role of the Son. To be sure, in the mind and plan of God, Jesus was crucified before the foundations of the world. That's because that had been pre-ordained by God in His mind, so to Him it had already happened, so He spoke that prophetically through His prophets. He declares the very end of all things from before things even begin.
     
  12. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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    The way you worded it, made it sound as thbough you think that the Trinity Doctrine thinks of Jesus Chrsit as being a seperate "person" from God. That is not true.

    I agree.

    I am not saying it does.. and I think you ar egetting off track. You accused those who accept the Trinty Dctrine as not being able to defend themselves logically, becasue they always say that the Trinity is a mystery. In that, it would seem that you think mysteries about God are bad. I was simply pointing oju that you too do not know everything about God, and there are things that are a mystery of God, and that the Trinity nature of God isn't bad just because it is a mystery.

    Also, I agree with everything you said here about Jesus. :)
     
  13. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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    For the second time, here is what you said:

    "In their effort to explain the mysterious 3 in one, Trinitarians have had to go outside of the bible to speak to us in terms that are unbiblical, and at many times, contrary to explicit statements in scripture that speak of God’s indivisible oneness of existence"

    This statement makes "mystery" soaund like a bad thing, and it makes it sound as if you beleive that if the TD was true, then this "mystery" of a 2 in 1 God head would be fully understandable.

    By this, I assumed that you did not favor any mysteries about God. So, later, I stated that you have replaced one mystery about God, with another: Jesus tlaking to Himself when He said "My God, My God".

    If mysteries about God are ok, then your statement quoted above is null.

    As long as oyu get to an answer. Still waiting on that. And if oyu already have answered my question, i missed it. Perhaps being more concise would help?

    I agree, I just do not think that "Him" was "He" :) Lets stop using pronouns for a minute. You seem to think that it was the nature of Jesus' humanity to say that, pray that, and seek after Jesus. Make sense?

    I think that it was the Human nature of Jesus, to say, pray and seek after the Father.

    Yes, but you haven't listed any ascriptures that support his multiple perosnalities. :) Who was Jesus praying to in the garden? Himself, or another?

    Yes, God, as Jesus, did die, physically. God did not die Spiritually.

    I am not distinguishing between his humanity and Diety.. you are. You ar the one that says He was God, and yet also says that His humnan nature spoke with His devine nature.

    I accept that Jesus was both man and God, and that Jesus spoke with the Father, a second "being" of the Godhead, rather than to Himself.
     
  14. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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    Ahh, but Jesus, as the Word, has existed for eternity, has He not? "The Word was with God..."

    And when I am speaking of the "Son of GOd", I am speaking of Jesus Chrsit, both existing eternally form beginning to end, and beyomnd spiritually, and as physically, from His birth until eternity.
     
  15. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    When you say this I interpret it as you referring to the Deity of Jesus Christ. In that case, yes, God was the Word (of Life) that manifested in the flesh. That is referring the Spirit of God (Deity - the Father), who has no beginning or end.

    However, "The Son of God" does have a beginning, for that term is referring to God manifesting in the flesh to redeem mankind. Scriptures do not say that "The Son of God" is eternal. It does not use the term "eternal Son". It used begotten, which connotates a beginning.

    I found a few good articles that I thought you would be interested in reading, not by Bernard, ;) who I'm sure your probably sick or reading already. :p


    This one is by J. L. Hall:
    ____________________________________
    Did Jesus Pray to Himself ?

    Jesus' prayers open our understanding to the majesty of the Incarnation, for through them we grasp the divine-human relationship between God and His Son. Trinitarians often refer to statements Jesus made about His father, including those in His prayers, in an effort to prove that two persons were involved - who they identify as God the Son and God the Father. Since they reason that only persons and not natures communicate with each other, they regard the prayers as clear evidence that Jesus is a separate person from "the Father". Moreover, they cite Jesus' remarks about the Father as scriptural support for the Trinitarian theory. However, the prayers and remarks by Jesus destroy any concept of God as being a trinity of co-equal, and co-existent persons.

    The Bible clearly distinguishes God the Father from His Son. The Son was born in Bethlehem, but the eternal God does not know a beginning. The Son grew into maturity - physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually. He became tired, hungry, weary, sleepy - just as other men. Although He did not commit sin, He was tempted in all points as other men are tempted. He suffered from the trials in Jerusalem and died on the cross-just as the two thieves also died. God does not grow, nor can He die. These facts alone clearly distinguish the Son from the Father.

    The Bible tells us that the man Christ Jesus is the mediator between God and men (I Timothy 2:5). God is one, but a mediator serves more than one - He stood between God and mankind, effecting reconciliation. Only as a man could Jesus be our sacrifice, mediator, advocate, and high priest, acting on our behalf for our justification.

    Jesus offered Himself as a spotless lamb to God. Having lived as a human being, He offered the blood from His own body as the basis for the forgiveness of our sins. God did not die on the cross, nor did a divine eternal person offer blood from a divine eternal body. As the Son of God Jesus offered His own human body and His own earthly blood to God. The distinction between God and His Son can also be seen in the events after the crucifixion. God raised Jesus from the dead (Romans 10:9, Ephesians 1:20), gave Him all power in heaven and earth (Matthew 28:18), made Him Lord and Christ (Acts 2:36), and exalted His name to be above every name in heaven, on earth, and beneath the earth (Philippians 2:9). If the Son had been a co-equal person in the Godhead, this exaltation would not have been possible, for He would have had these positions and attributes from eternity. It is evident, therefore, that the Son of God was not a second divine person in the Godhead.

    Biblical facts reveal that Jesus lived as an authentic human being, that He did not merely assume the appearance of flesh (1). Therefore we should not be surprised that He prayed to God, seeking strength, guidance, and assurance. Moreover, we should not be surprised that Jesus had a will distinct from God (2), that He was truly human in spirit and soul, that He possessed a self-awareness of His humanity. We are not to suppose, however, that the human Jesus was not different from other people, for only He was begotten by the Holy Ghost. God was His immediate Father. He is rightfully called the "only begotten of the Father". His miraculous birth meant that His humanity was not tainted with the inherited sinful nature of the Fall, and through Him God could reveal Himself to us in redemptive love.

    Jesus' prayers to God the Father came from His human life, from the Incarnation. His prayers were not those of one divine person to another divine person of God, but those of an authentic human praying to the one true God. Prayer is based on an inferior being in supplication before a superior being. If the one praying is equal in power and authority to the one to whom he is praying, there is no genuine prayer (3). A conversation can be held between two equals, but an omnipotent person does not need to pray for help from an equal. Even intercessory prayers are meaningless unless the one praying is inferior to the one to whom he prays (4). If he were of equal power, knowledge, and wisdom, he could take care of the needs of those for whom he prays without asking help of another. If Jesus prayed as "God the Son", then God the Son is inferior to God the Father. But such inferiority destroys the Trinitarian theory (5) In submitting His will to the Father, Jesus confessed that His will was inferior: "Nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done" (Luke 22:42). He also stated the he did not seek to do His own will, but the will of the Father (John 5:30). If the Son had been an eternal divine person sharing equal power and knowledge, and wisdom with two other persons in the trinity, His will could not have been inferior to theirs.

    Jesus also stated that the Father was greater than He was: "My Father is greater than I" (John 14:28). It is absurd to say that this statement was made by a co-equal, eternal person in a trinity. Jesus was not speaking as God, but as the Son of God. Moreover, Jesus said, "the Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever He doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise" (John 5:19). He credits the Father as the source of His works, as having the power to give life, and the authority to execute judgment (John 5:19-30). If the Son were an equal person in a trinity, He would have these attributes innately within himself; He could not derive them from a superior Father6.

    But we should not suppose that His humanity detracted from His deity. Jesus was not the incarnation of one person of a trinity, but he was the incarnation of the fullness of God - everything that God is was in Him. Thus the Bible says the "God was manifest in the flesh" (I Tim 3:16) and that "in Him [Jesus] dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily" (Colossians 2:9). As God incarnate, He identified Himself with the Father: "I and my Father are one" (John 10:30; 31-33);

    "If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him ... he that has seen me hath seen the Father" (John 14:7-9). As God with us, Jesus revealed His deity, identifying Himself as the God of Abraham and the One who revealed Himself to Moses as the I AM (John 8:24, 58).

    Jesus was both God and man. Although this union is sometimes referred to as God-man, this term may be misleading, for it may lead some people to think of Him as a demigod. On the other hand, it is equally incorrect to refer to Him as a anointed man. Although quantitatively God cannot be confined to a body, qualitatively he could reside in a body. Neither was Jesus a part-human, but he was man in the full sense. He was fully God and fully man. He possessed both the nature of God and the nature of man. He was aware that He was He was God and that He was man. He could and did speak and act as a man, and he could and did speak and act as God. As a man, he did not know the day or hour when the Son would come in power and glory (Mark 13:22); as God he forgave sins. Both His humanity and deity, although fused into His one being, remained distinct within His one personality. Admittedly, the Incarnation is a mystery beyond the comprehension of the human mind.

    Did Jesus pray to Himself? No, not when we understand that Jesus was both God and man. In His deity Jesus did not pray, for God does not need to pray to anyone. As a man, Jesus prayed to God, not to his humanity (7). He did not pray to Himself as humanity, but to the one true God, to the same God who dwelled in His humanity and who also inhabits the universe. No further explanation is given, and none is needed. Does Jesus pray now since his exaltation ? The answer is no. He prayed in the days of His flesh (Hebrews 5:7). The work of the mediation was finished through His death on the cross at Calvary (Hebrews 9:14-15). There is no more sacrifice for sins, for once and for all time His blood was shed for the remission of sins (Hebrews 10:12). Unlike the Old Testament priests, he does not continually offer sacrifices for sins. There is no more offering, but there remains remission of sins for those who repent and are baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (Hebrews 10:18, Acts 2:38). His present role as intercessor consists not only of daily prayers but the application of the benefit of the cross to our lives (Romans 8:34; 1 John 1:7-9; 2:1-2).

    Jesus said, "At that day ye shall ask in my name: and I say not unto you, that I will pray the Father for you: for the Father himself loveth you, because ye have loved me, and believed that I came out from God. I came forth from the Father, and am come into the world: again I leave the world and go to the Father" (John 16:26-28). Jesus does not pray now, but as God He hears and answers prayers prayed in His name.


    (This article appeared in the July issue of the Pentecostal Herald. The footnotes did not appear in the original, and were added by the editor)

    ---------------------------------------------

    1. That is, he was not a phantasm, as some Gnostics held. Jesus was quite real, from birth to death.

    2. As a man, while in the flesh

    3. In recent years, heretical teachers have often exploited a basic misconception of the nature of God and man in proposing a form and attitude of prayer not demonstrated by scripture. Examples include K. Copeland, F. Price, and others in the "Word of Faith" movement, such as graduates of Hagin's Rhema Bible school. In the imbalance resulting from improper understanding, these people have suggested both the "commanding of God" as "co-equal heirs with Jesus", and that Jesus was indeed, no different that "born-again man". In the editor's opinion, all such distortions clearly conclude in blasphemy.

    4. In the quality of inferiority, the author does not include voluntary submission. A prayer to a saint, or angel is therefor without Bible basis, except as a petition to one in authority. We are not led to believe that ascended saints have more authority that those who are flesh bound, on earth, thus there is no support given for prayers to heavenly powers, other than to God the Father, in the name of Jesus Christ.

    5. Thus we agree that the scriptures do not teach subordinationism, such as do neo-Arians.

    (6) Seeing numerous proofs that sonship is not in equality with fatherhood, the question must be asked, "In what dimensions then is the Son equal to the Father, if distinct, or does such equality only pertain to those aspects in which the Father and Son are indistinct ?"

    7. While some contend that this suggests that Jesus is schizophrenic, or split in personality, once again, it is important to understand the difference between nature and person. We are also reminded that Jesus, as man, set the pattern for all "followers of Jesus" who would through the new birth become and abide as sons, or children of God. His prayer illustrates the prayer of all who are of a human nature.

    ________________________________
    This is short article is in answer to the question of Jesus' Prayer in the Garden . It was a quick answer by Dr. Daniel L. Segraves.
     
  16. TorahsDisciple

    TorahsDisciple I Come To Serve

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  17. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    Jesus' Prayers
    by
    Jason Dulle
    [email protected]

    Why?!? This is one of the first questions raised in the minds of those who begin to realize that Jesus not only prayed, but He also led a religious life with God. Why did Jesus pray? If He was God He wouldn not need to pray would He? Yes He would! He would because He was also flesh.

    Under the discussion of Jesus' humanity we saw Him as growing "in favour with God" (Luke 2:52). This means he had a progressive and ongoing relationship with God. This was a relationship He acquired. He did not bypass the need for a relationship with God because He was God in the flesh. His deity was divinely limited so that His human life might be lived in the same manner as ours. Jesus had to grow into a relationship with God, and of the many things this included, prayer was one of them.

    That Jesus had a relationship with God is evidenced by statements He made such as, "For I do always those things that please him," and, "I know him, and keep his saying" (John 8:29, 55). This need for a relationship with God arose out of the genuineness of His humanity. Truly Jesus learned to love, obey, and know God (John 8:55; 10:15; 10:17; 15:10; Hebrews 5:7-9).

    Jesus prayed because He was human. If He would not have had need for prayer, indeed we would be justified in doubting the genuineness of His humanity because it is said in the Psalms, "O thou that hearest prayer, unto thee shall all flesh come" (Psalm 65:2).

    Some attempt to "play off" or even deny the genuineness of Jesus' prayers to protect His deity. This camp relegates Jesus' prayers to a mere moral example given by Jesus for us to follow. They contend that Jesus had no real need for prayer. Is this Scriptural?

    If Jesus was not praying because He truly needed divine assistance, then His prayers were deceptive because He made them seem like genuine prayers. Jesus was nothing more than a good actor, a hypocrite. If He faked His prayers for the sake of being an example, then did He fake His love and compassion toward those who came to Him seeking help for their souls? Jesus was not deceptive, and neither were His prayers.

    The author of Hebrews attested to the genuineness of Jesus' prayers when He said, "Who in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared" (Hebrews 5:7 italics mine). The author validated that Jesus did indeed pray, and those prayers were prayed to the One Who was able to save Him from death (God). Jesus did not pray to Himself, but He prayed to the Father. These prayers were with strong crying and tears. Clearly these adjectives and verbs demonstrate true action on the part of Jesus, and intense action at that. There would be no reason for such expressive language if Jesus' prayers were not real.

    To explain the prayers of Jesus as the human nature of Jesus praying to the divine nature of Jesus poses problems. For one, natures do not pray, people do. Secondly, the Scripture declares that He prayed to the Father, not Himself. It would make no sense for Jesus to pray to Himself. Surely if this was the case, there would have been no need for verbal expressions of prayer because Jesus could have communicated to the deity within Him in some transferable, telepathic manner. This is not the view of Scripture.

    To explain the prayers of Jesus as one divine person praying to another poses even greater problems. If this were the case, then there is a subordination of one divine person to another. Prayer is addressed to one who is superior in power and ability, or else there would be no need for prayer. If this is a case of deity praying to deity, then there is a hierarchy in the Godhead, and a ditheistic Godhead at best.

    It seems best to understand the prayers of Jesus in light of His humanity. Jesus possessed a complete human psyche through which He communicated with man and with God as all other human beings do.2 The verse quoted above demonstrates this well when it explains Jesus' prayers as being prayed "in the days of his flesh." This does not mean that the body Jesus possessed during His earthly ministry was dissolved somehow upon His glorification and ascension, but was speaking of the days in which Jesus walked in this earth before His ascension into heaven. It was during that time that Jesus prayed in the manner the author described.

    The best place to demonstrate the genuineness and sincerity of Christ's prayers, and His real need for prayer is in His own personal prayer life. One of the first indications given that Jesus' prayers were genuine and sincere is that they were prayed in solitary places in the midst of the night or at other times (Mark 1:35; Luke 5:16). John chapter seventeen is the prayer Jesus prayed to the Father just before His betrayal and subsequent suffering. The prayer is filled with personal and intimate statements made by a man to His God. If Jesus' prayers were mere moral examples He performed for our benefit there would have been no need for Him to pray alone.

    Not only did Jesus pray alone, but He prayed all night long at times (Luke 6:12). For Peter, He prayed that his faith would not fail (Luke 22:31-32).

    There is probably no greater example of the genuineness of Jesus' prayers than those recorded of in the Garden of Gethsemane before His betrayal and crucifixion. It was here that Jesus prayed so earnestly that it is said "his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground" (Luke 22:44).3

    Those who contend that Jesus' prayers were only for an example to others often cite John 11:41-42 for support. Jesus prayed, "Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me. And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me." This prayer was just prior to the raising of Lazarus from the dead. The mourners and family members around the tomb were the audience of this prayer (vs. 19, 31-32, 39, 41).

    I do not believe that the prayer at Lazarus' tomb gives evidence to the idea that Jesus prayed as an example for others. This is not to say that Jesus never intended to be an example of a praying man to His disciples, but this would only be a secondary, not a primary purpose. It might be compared to a prayer leader in a church, who prays before the church as an example. The purpose of this is to help the church/newcomers know how to pray, and/or to help them pray. Even so, however, the prayer leader's prayers are sincere and genuine. They are directed first to God, and only secondarily to the people.

    If Jesus' primary purpose for praying at Lazarus' tomb was for an example to the people, then Jesus' prayer was a deceptive charade. He addressed the prayer to the Father as though He was actually praying to Him. If Jesus was not sincerely praying to the Father, then He was only acting. The Scriptures do not portray Jesus' prayers in this light. I confess that Jesus may have had secondary purposes for His prayers, but His prayers were genuine nontheless.

    At first glance, the Lazarus episode does seem to indicate that Jesus' prayer was for an example. Looking more closely at the passage, however, it indicates otherwise. There are two probable interpretations of this prayer. The first sees the prayer as consisting of two parts. Although the text does not make this disctinction, it appears to be possible that the prayer was broken up into public and private portions. Jesus spoke the phrase "Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me" where those gathered around could hear Him. The second phrase, "And I knew that thou hearest me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me," was spoken privately to the Father. If the latter part of the prayer was spoken publicly, it might lay Jesus open to the charge of being a shallow phony. In modern vernacular Jesus said: "Dad, I am really glad that you always hear and answer every prayer I pray, this one being no exception. I did not pray it because I do not believe you are going to answer it, but because of the people standing around Me. I want them to believe that You have truly sent Me, and that I am here doing Your will." If we were to hear a minister pray a prayer like this we would be turned off. Our response would be, "Does he think his faith is so big that he does not need to pray?". It seems that Jesus might have spoke this last part quietly to the Father, saying "I am not doubting you, just reassuring the people," whereas the first part He prayed so that all could hear. It was a prayer of honesty and intimacy with God, private in its very nature.

    The other interpretation, and more likely of the two, understands the purpose of Jesus' prayer to be a genuine prayer of thanksgiving to the Father, but that it also served as a confirmation of Jesus' identity as the Son of God. This view sees Jesus as praying the entire prayer publicly so that the onlookers would hear Jesus praying to the same Father that they prayed to, thanking Him for what He was about to do, and when the Father did do what Jesus had just thanked Him for, it would serve to confirm the message and person of Christ, that He was truly sent by the Father. The purpose of Jesus' prayer was not for an example to the onlookers, but to serve as confirmation to the message of Jesus, and bolster faith in Him, that He was indeed the Son of God.

    Jesus had no reason to pray for the raising of Lazarus. This was due to the fact that He already knew it was the will of God to raise him from the dead. When Jesus received word of Lazarus' condition, He purposely lingered around in the place where He was at for two days (John 11:6, 15). After two days, He decided to journey to Bethany with His disciples, knowing through the word of knowledge that Lazarus had died two days previous (vs. 11-15). It must have been a two day journey to Bethany from where Jesus was at, because Lazarus had been dead for four days when Jesus arrived (v. 17).

    Jesus purposely allowed Lazarus to die (v. 11) and waited to arrive in Bethany until four days had expired since His death, so that He might raise him from the dead. He specifically waited for four days because the Jews believed it was possible for a man to be resurrected from the dead during the first three days after his death, but impossible thereafter because the body starts to decompose after three days.1 Jesus wanted to demonstrate the power of God to them by raising a decomposing body from the dead, thereby confounding the Jews' wisdom and glorifying God through those who would believe on Jesus through the miracle.

    When Jesus arrived at Bethany He did not have to pray to get the Father to raise Lazarus from the dead. Jesus knew that it was His purpose for being there. He was being obedient to God's direction, not seeking after it. This can be the only reason why Jesus said what He did in His prayer to the Father.

    Since Jesus knew it was the Lord's will to raise Lazarus from the dead, there was no real purpose in praying for it to happen. Just as with us, the Lord knows what we have need of before we ask Him (Matthew 6:8). Maybe Jesus prayed simply because it is a Scriptural principle that we will receive an answer when we ask for it (James 4:2). Jesus demonstrated His faith in God by addressing Him in a word of prayer before performing His will. If you notice, Jesus never asked the Father to raise Lazarus from the dead. He thanked God that He was always heard by Him. Jesus was assured of the Lord's will, and was merely giving thanks for it. This is what He said for the Jews' sake. He prayed to the Father to demonstrate to the Jews that, indeed, what was about to transpire was a work of God done through Him, and not a work of His own apart from God. If they believed it was done by God, then Jesus' claims as to His identity would be justified and believed too.

    In conclusion, Jesus needed to pray as much as we do, and He did. We should follow His example, but He did not pray merely for the purposes of His actions being exemplified by others. He prayed because He needed a relationship with God, and depended upon God's strength and power that comes from His anointing to minister to the world and finish the works the Father gave Him to do (John 4:34; 5:36).
     
  18. jbenjesus

    jbenjesus <font color="blue">Berean</font>

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    Christian
    WHY DID JESUS PRAY IF HE WAS GOD?

    BY: E. G. BASS

    ----------------------------------

    The question has been asked, "If the Lord Jesus Christ was God, why did he pray to the Father?" We teach by the word of God that there is ONE GOD, the creator of the heavens and the earth and all mankind, manifest to mankind as Father (Creator), Son (Saviour), and the Holy Spirit (Indwelling spirit). We believe and teach that there is but ONE GOD with three manifestations. "For there are three that bear record" in heaven, the Father, the Word and the Holy Ghost: and these three are ONE" (I Jn. 5:7). It does not say that they agree or work as one but that they are ONE. The Name of the ONE TRUE GOD is Jesus Christ (Matt. 28:19, Acts 2:38). Jesus is the Father, Jesus is the Son, Jesus is the Holy Ghost.

    Now in asking the question, "Why did Jesus pray to the Father?" the Trinitarians try to prove that there is more than one in the Godhead. In this question they see Jesus, the Son, the second person, praying to the Father, the final person in the Godhead.

    Briefly let me bring in at this point the doctrine of the Trinity. This doctrine was the result of the Council of Nicea which was called by Constantine , the first Christian emperor of the Roman Empire. This council was called to settle the question of the Godhead , and the result was the doctrine of the Trinity. Briefly the doctrine is: "The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God." "And yet they are not three Gods but one God," but "these three persons, being truly distinct one from another."

    Also in this "trinity" of persons the son is begotten of the Father by an eternal generation, and the Holy Spirit proceeds by an eternal pro- cession from the Father and the Son, yet not withstanding they differ as to origin, the persons are co-eternal and co-equal, all alike are uncreated and omnipotent."

    This doctrine of the Trinity is nowhere to be found in the Bible. The Word of God plainly teaches THREE MANIFESTATIONS OF ONE GOD, not three persons or Gods. Nowhere in the Word of God can you find these words, "Trinity", "three persons", or "Holy Three." These are terms used by men to turn the hearts of men from the truth of God and who He is. Basically the doctrine of the Trinity has not changed since the council of Nicea.

    When we say that Jesus is the ONE TRUE GOD and beside Him there is no other the Trinitarian will ask this question, "Why did Jesus pray to the Father? They often say, "If Jesus is God then He prayed to himself." I will do my best to answer these questions.

    First, let me ask the Trinitarian a question. Their doctrine states that the Father and the Son are two persons and that they are separate and distinct one from the other, yet they are coeternal and co-equal. In simple language this means that the Father has no more power than the Son and likewise the Son has no more power than the Father. The Father was not before the Son or the Son was not before the Father. Now the question I will ask is this: "If the Father and Son are co-equal , why did the Son pray to the Father?" You pray to someone because you need help, If the Son is co-equal, with the Father he had no need to pray to Him for help because he has just as much power and might. Please think, Mr. Trinitarian, before you ask such a question.

    It is accepted everywhere that Jesus is the Son (Matt. 1:23-25). But let us prove that Jesus is the Father as well as the Son. "For unto us a child is born , unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace." (Isa. 9:6) Some say we are foolish to call Jesus both Father and Son, but this scripture calls him Father and Son in the same verse. A child would be born, a son given, but he would be called the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father. Jesus declared that He and the Father are one (Jn. 10:30). He does not say they work as one or agree as one, but He plainly states that they ARE one. Philip asked Jesus to show the disciples the Father in John 14:7-10. Jesus told Philip, "Have I been so long time with you and yet hast thou not known me, Philip. He that hath seen me hath seen the Father ; and how sayest thou then shew us the Father?" Some will say then if Jesus is the Son and also the Father then He prayed to Himself. lt would not be unscriptural to say this. Before you go up in Holy Smoke let us look at the Word of God. There is nothing unscriptural about the statement for in Heb. 6:13 we find "when God made promise to Abraham because He could swear by no greater, He swore by himself?" Did not God swear by himself? In Eph. 5:25-27 we read where Jesus presents the church to himself.

    Let us look at it in its true light. God is a spirit and we know by the word of God that a spirit has not flesh and bone. He created all things. This makes him Father. This same God manifested himself to the world as a Son. "But when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law" (Gal: 4:4) The Son was made. "Wherefore when He cometh unto the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body has thou prepared me." God would come to redeem fallen man so He prepared a body in the virgin Mary and got into that body and came to us to be our Saviour. This manifestation of God in mankind was called the Son. Not another, but God himself manifested in flesh. (Isa. 7:14, Matt. 1:22,23). This son was Emmanuel. "God with us." This was the child to be born and the Son to be given, yet He was the Mighty God, the Everlasting Father (Isa. 9:6). The Son was the mystery of Godliness being revealed to mankind; God manifested in flesh (1 Tim. 3:16). This was God becoming flesh and dwelling among us (John l:l,14).

    He prayed because as Son he took on himself the form of man and in taking on the form of man he took on himself a human nature (not a fallen nature!) Please read Phil. 2:5-8. In taking on this nature he could hunger, thirst, become tired, could cry, and could even die. But one of the principle characteristics of the human nature is that it must pray. There is something within all men that cries out for them to pray whether they do or not. So Christ in his humanity prayed unto the eternal Spirit. Now even as God took these human characteristics on himself when He came into this world, even so He laid them aside in His resurrection, and we no longer know Him after the flesh (II Cor. 5:16). Paul said we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we Him no more. After His resurrection we know him as Thomas found Him, "My Lord, and my God" (Jn. 20:28). We know Him as John saw Him on the isle of Patmos, as the Almighty (Rev. 1:7,8). As the first and last (Rev. 1:17,18). If Jesus is the first and last there can be room for no other. We know Him now as King of Kings and LORD OF LORDS (Rev. 19:16).

    _________________________________
    Talk to you soon Zone...
     
  19. TorahsDisciple

    TorahsDisciple I Come To Serve

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  20. ZoneChaos

    ZoneChaos Senior Veteran

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    US-Republican
    Does "begotten" mean "created"?

    Or rather, can begotten mean "of"?

    Was what Trinitarians call "Son of God" created by God, or is the "Son of God" simply of God, with no beginning... eternal, yet begotten?

    Has Jesus Christ always existed, without beginning, and has done so, by the very nature of being God, of sharing in what it means to be God, and by that, is begotten of that eternal nature, without a beginning of existance, but rathe rin a state of always being begotten... of always being of God?
     
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