Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing (epiphany) of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Titus 2:13
the Holy Spirit. It is absurd to say that we could be anointed with a person, i.e., that a person is the symbolic oil with which the anointing is done. But how reasonable is the thought that we can be anointed with God's disposition, His thoughts, affections, graces and will; for this is just what the anointing is (Is. 11: 2, 3; 61: 1-3). Again, the Bible teaches that we are baptized with (not by) the Holy Spirit (Matt. 3: 11; John 1: 33; Acts 1: 5). How could we be baptized with, as distinct from by, a person? But we can be and are baptized with God's disposition and into God's disposition (Matt. 28: 19; 1 Cor. 12: 13, the phrase "by one Spirit," in the Greek reads, "in one Spirit"). Again, we are exhorted to be filled with God's Spirit (Eph. 5: 18). How could we be filled with the Spirit, if the Spirit is God Almighty, a person? But we could be and are filled with God's disposition. Again, if the Spirit is God Almighty, a person, how could He be given (Luke 11: 13) to us and thus be owned by us? But if It is God's disposition begun, developed and completed in us, we see that It has been given to and is owned by us (Rom. 8: 15; 2 Tim. 1: 7). So, too, the Bible assures us that the Spirit was given to Jesus not by measure (John 3: 34), i.e., not with any limitations, because of His perfection, while, by reason of our imperfection (2 Cor. 4: 7), to us it is given by measure, limitedly, and that variously (Rom. 12: 6-8; 1 Cor. 12: 11-14, 27; Eph. 4: 7). But how could a person be given to one without limitations and to others by limitations? But a disposition could and must be so given as between perfect and imperfect beings and the varying imperfections of imperfect beings. Then, the Bible tells us that we are sealed with the Holy Spirit (Eph. 1: 13, 14). A person cannot be a seal and thus be used as a seal of others; but God does seal us as His own by giving us His holy disposition. If the Holy Spirit were a person, how could He be poured out. (Joel 2: 28, 29; Matt. 3: 16;
Acts 2: 1-4; 10: 44, 45)? If It is a holy power and a holy disposition, we can see how this can be. In a prophecy (Ps. 133: 1-3) the Spirit is shown (v. 1) to be the good and pleasant disposition of the saints in unity, the unity of the Spirit in the bonds of peace (Eph. 4: 3). In v. 2 its bestowment is spoken of as pictured by the anointing of Aaron. Then in v. 3 it is represented by the dew of Herman descending on Zion's mountains, because It tempers the heat of temptation and produces the blessing that gives everlasting life, i.e., a character like God's—God's disposition.
Other things Scripturally said of the Holy Spirit could be brought forward, proving that It is not God Almighty, a person; but is God's power and disposition, in Himself and in all in harmony with Him; but enough has been given, we believe, proving this thought. Accordingly, we will now end this feature of our discussion, and will leave for study later on the examination of the arguments that trinitarians use as alleged indirect proofs of their doctrines, since in this installment we have reviewed their alleged direct proofs.
Having presented twelve general arguments against the trinity doctrine, in the course of which we refuted the nine alleged direct Biblical proofs that trinitarians offer for their doctrine, we will now examine the alleged indirect proofs that they offer for it; and our examination of these will prove them to be likewise fallacious. One of the alleged indirect proofs that they offer for the trinity is the unity of the Father and Son (John 10: 30), "I and the Father are one" (hen, neuter in Greek, not heis, masculine, or mia, feminine). The same refutation applies to their use of John 10: 30 as we gave of the same view based on the Father, Word and the Holy Spirit being one (hen) in the interpolated passage forming parts of 1 John 5: 7, 8 in the A. V. (but omitted in almost all translations since 1870), a refutation offered on the contingency that 1 John 5: 7, 8 be conceded to be genuine. Additionally we might
say, if the logic were valid that the Father's and Son's oneness of John 10: 30 must be that of being, we would have to say that Paul and Apollos were one being (1 Cor. 3: 6-8)! Of course they were two separate beings. Hen being used of them in 1 Cor. 3: 8 (not mia, which would be necessary to agree with the feminine ousia, being) proves that their oneness was not one of being but of spirit, disposition (Acts 4: 32; 1 Cor. 1: 10; Eph. 4: 3-6, 13; Phil. 1: 27; 2: 2; 4: 2). Hence John 10: 30 does not by the Greek word hen prove that the Father and Son are one being any more than 1 Cor. 3: 8 proves by the word hen that Paul and Apollos were one being; but the same word and form of that word, proving Paul and Apollos to be one in heart, mind and will, gives presumptive evidence that the same word and form of that word in John 10: 30 proves the same of the Father and Son.
But we have more than presumptive proof for this; for Jesus praying (John 17: 11, 21, 22) that all of the saints may be one (hen, not heis, nor mia) did not pray that they be all one being, which would be nonsense, but that their unity may be one in mind, heart and will. Since the oneness for which He prayed for them was not a oneness of being, the oneness between Him and the Father cannot be that of being, because Jesus in John 17: 11, 22 prays that the oneness for which He prayed on their behalf be patterned after the oneness that exists between the Father and Himself, "That they may be one as we are." Hence the oneness between the Father and Him is not one of being, but one of mind, heart and will. Moreover Jesus defines this oneness in v. 21 as follows: "that they all may be one, as thou, Father, art in me [God was in Him by His Holy Spirit, disposition, even as Jesus is in the saints by the Holy Spirit, disposition, (John 14: 17, 20)] and I in thee [Jesus was in the Father (John 14: 10, 11, 20) by accepting and keeping the Father as His Head, i.e., by His being
and remaining in the consecrated attitude (1 Cor. 3: 23; 11: 3, passages that also strongly prove Christ's inferiority to the Father, and the Father's being the Supreme Being)], that [thus the Father and the Son, by their Spirit, disposition, being in them and they by their spirit of consecration, being in Them (1 John 5: 20; Col. 3: 3; 1 Cor. 12:12, 13)] they also may be one in us … that they may be one, even as we are one." Thus these verses prove that the same kind of oneness as exists between the saints, exists between the Father and the Son and vice versa; but since the oneness that exists between the saints is not one of being, but one of heart, mind and will, the oneness that exists between the Father and Son is not one of being, but one of will, heart, and mind. Furthermore, if the Father and Son were but one Being, they could not be the two Beings bearing required witness, as John 8: 17, 18 says they were, since the law required at least two different beings to be witnesses sufficient to establish a matter. But since they gave sufficient witness, they must be two Beings. Hence their oneness is not that of being; for they are two Beings. It must be that of mind, heart, and will. Accordingly, John 10: 30 does not prove the Son's equality with the Father; rather it proves the Son's subordination to the Father; for John 17: 21, which shows the kind of unity that exists between them to be connected with the Son's being in the Father, implies that the Father is the Son's Head and that the Son is His in the sense that we are Christ's, in subordination to Him; hence He must be subordinate to the Father (1 Cor. 3: 23; 11: 3), even as the headship of Christ makes the Church subordinate to Christ (Col. 1: 18; Eph. 1: 22, 23; 4: 15; 5: 23, 24, compared with Col. 3: 19).
Sometimes, as a second alleged indirect proof of the trinity, John 14: 9 is used: "He that hath seen me, hath seen the Father." Unless one should hold that the Father and the Son are one and the same person,
which of course the passage does not say nor mean, nor do the trinitarians profess to believe such, it is difficult to understand the mental process of one claiming this passage to teach the trinity. The thought rather is that the Son, being the character image of the Father (Heb. 1: 3; Col. 1: 15), is a picture of the Father, and thus He could say that whoever sees Him as the character picture of the Father sees the Father, i.e., in His character, but of course not in His body, even as we would say that one who sees a statue of Lincoln, sees Lincoln, or as we would say of it, That is Lincoln. Thus we cannot see God's body or shape (John 5: 37); but we can see how He looks in character, when we see Jesus' character. This is evidently our Lord's thought in these words, and is given by our Lord to disabuse Philip of the thought of Christ's showing him and the other disciples God's body, which Philip requested. Another, a third, alleged indirect proof that God is a trinity is the following: The perfection of God requires a trinity, e.g., God is perfect in active love. But one cannot love unless there is an object to love. Hence God had from all eternity an object to love, i.e., His Son, and eternally must have had a channel for manifesting this love, the Holy Spirit; hence, like the Father, both of these must be eternal, and therefore must be God! This is certainly far-fetched. Replying further we would say: (1) Since, under the theory that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are God, this object of God's love would have to be one outside the trinity, since it is God, i.e., the One alleged to be the trinity, that does the loving, there would be no need of concluding that there is a trinity from the standpoint that God's love from eternity would have to have an object to love; and (2) if we can love things not existing, but whose existence we expect in the future, e.g., the Millennial Kingdom, the new heavens and earth, etc., God could
of course from all eternity have loved the Son, the Church, the World, before any of these existed.
But the two main indirect proofs that trinitarians offer for there being a trinity are, they allege, that the names, attributes, works and honors that belong to God exclusively are by the Bible expressly ascribed to the Son and to the Holy Spirit; hence, they conclude that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are God, i.e., are a trinity. We will examine these two alleged indirect proofs separately, first considering that respecting the Son as their fourth alleged indirect proof of the trinity, and will in their turn consider the four things alleged to prove His Supreme Deity. First, then, trinitarians allege that the Bible ascribes to Jesus the names that belong exclusively to God. They further say that these names are Jehovah, God and Lord. To begin, we deny that the name Jehovah is given our Lord Jesus as His name, though there are certain Scriptures wherein He speaks, is spoken to, or is spoken of as God's Representative, i.e., speaks, is spoken to or is spoken of as Jehovah, because Jehovah in these situations speaks, is spoken to or spoken of in Him as His Representative. As we have already seen from a variety of standpoints, He is pointedly distinguished from Jehovah, e.g., as Lord in contrast with Jehovah, as the Angel, as the Archangel, as Michael, as the Angel of Jehovah, as the Servant, Arm, Son, Firstborn, Companion, appointed King, etc., of Jehovah. Jehovah is said to be His God, in whose strength, hence not in His own, He will stand and feed God's Flock in His glorified condition (Mic. 5: 4). These passages clearly show Him not to be Jehovah; and be it noted that such passages should be the controlling ones in this matter, and not passages where He speaks or acts or stands as Jehovah's Representative; for, properly regarded, this latter set of passages disproves His being Jehovah from the standpoint that He is in them acting as Jehovah's
Representative, not as Jehovah Himself, and a representative of course is not the one whom he represents.
We will now examine briefly the main occurrences of the name Jehovah, claimed by trinitarians as applicable to Jesus. We have already refuted their use of Jer. 23: 5, 6, and from it proved the reverse of their claim. In Gen. 18 the chief Messenger of the three was undoubtedly our prehuman Lord; but in that chapter He speaks as Jehovah, because He there acted as God's Angel, Messenger, Representative, just as in the case of His speaking as Jehovah in Gen. 22: 16, compare with vs. 11, 15; and in Ex. 3: 4-7 compare with v. 2. To the claim that the expression in Is. 40: 3, "Prepare the way of Jehovah," applies the name Jehovah to Jesus, because the charge was given to John the Baptist to prepare the way for our Lord, we reply: In preparing the way for Jesus, John was preparing the way for Jehovah, i.e., making preparations for the fulfillment of God's plan, which is the "way of Jehovah"; and in the carrying out of that plan Jesus acts as Jehovah's Executive and Plenipotentiary. Hence the name Jehovah is not in this passage applied to Jesus. To the claim that in Is. 2: 2-4; Mic. 4: 1-3 the expressions, "mountain [kingdom] of the house of Jehovah" and "mountain [kingdom] of Jehovah," apply the name Jehovah to Jesus, because He will be the Millennial King, we answer as follows: In the first expression, "the house [family] of Jehovah" means Christ and the Church (Heb. 3: 6). Hence Jehovah is shown to be different from each member of His house or family, in which Jesus is the Firstborn (Rom. 8: 29). The second expression is shown by our Lord's prayer not to give the name of Jehovah to our Lord (Matt. 6: 10). Moreover, as the Millennial King, our Lord will act as Jehovah's Representative (Ps. 2: 6).
Combining the clause of Mic. 5: 2, "goings forth have been from old, from everlasting," with the clause
of Ps. 90: 1, 2, "Jehovah … from everlasting to everlasting, Thou art God," some trinitarians claim that our Lord is Jehovah. We answer that Jehovah being spoken of in Mic. 5: 4 as our Lord's God disproves such a thought. The expression of Ps. 90: 2, "from everlasting to everlasting," describes God's eternity, while the "goings forth," etc., of Mic. 5: 2 refer to the giving of prophecies of the Messiah's first and second advents (of old) and to God's fixing these prophecies in His plan before the world was (from everlasting). In answer to the claim that by the expression in Is. 25: 6, "In this mountain [kingdom] Jehovah of hosts will make a feast of fat things," the name Jehovah is applied to Jesus, we answer no, on the basis of Matt. 6: 10. Moreover St. Paul's quotation of part of the words of this passage (v. 8), "Death is swallowed up in victory," and his comment thereon, "Thanks be unto God who giveth us the victory through Jesus Christ our Lord" (1 Cor. 15: 57), prove that Jehovah here is God, not Christ. Is. 40: 1, 9, 10 is quoted by some trinitarians as proof that Jesus is called Jehovah. We answer, it proves the opposite; for Christ is here called Jehovah's Arm, Representative, Executive (Is. 53: 1; 51: 5, 9; 52: 10; 59: 15-20). To the claim that Is. 8: 13, 14 is a proof that the name Jehovah is applied to Jesus, we answer: The connection shows that Jesus is spoken of as waiting on Jehovah and calls attention to the children of Jehovah that Jehovah has given Him as brethren (Is. 8: 1618; Heb. 2: 13). Trinitarians claim that the fact that in Is. 54: 13 Jehovah is said to be the Teacher of God's children, and the further fact that our Lord is said to be their Teacher (Matt. 23: 8), prove that our Lord is Jehovah. We reply, Jesus quotes the word from Is. 54: 13 as a proof that His Father is the one who teaches God's children (John 6: 45). However, the Father in teaching us does it through our Lord (1 Cor. 1: 30; 8: 6). The foregoing are the main passages
that trinitarians use to prove that the Bible applies the name Jehovah to our Lord. They not only do not do so, but in their connections there are such expressions used as refute their claims, while the passages that we quoted in proof that Jesus is not Jehovah completely refutes their idea. So, then, their claim that this name, which belongs exclusively to God, is Scripturally expressly applied to Jesus, is found to be untrue, which makes the pertinent conclusion based on this claim fall to the ground, as to this name.
Next, they claim that the name God applies exclusively to Jehovah, and is expressly applied to Jesus in the Bible, which they claim proves Him to be God Almighty, and thus the second person of the trinity—a proof of the trinity. This claim by an examination of the pertinent Scriptures will be found to be as erroneous as the claim that the exclusive name of God, Jehovah, is Scripturally applied to our Lord. In the first place, we deny that the term God applies exclusively to the Supreme Being. In a former part of this discussion we stated that the word god (Hebrew, el, elohim, and Greek, theos) is in the Bible used about 200 times for angels, good and bad, and gave about 20 references in proof of our statement. But it is because the word el and elohim mean mighty one, the latter also meaning mighty ones, that they are also used of prominent and powerful humans (Gen. 23: 6; Ex. 7: 1; 21: 6; 22: 8, 10, 28, compared with Acts 23: 5 for an inspired comment; Ps. 82: 1, 6; see John 10: 34, 35 for Jesus' comment thereon). So, too, theos is used in the Greek New Testament (2 Thes. 2: 4 twice, John 10: 34, 35). Accordingly, the claim that the word God is exclusively applicable to the Supreme Being is an error. The following will enable us to see clearly in this matter: The word God is both a proper noun, and that the name of but one person, and it is also a common noun, a substantive applicable to many persons, human and spiritual.
As a proper noun it belongs to the Supreme Being exclusively; But as a proper noun it is never applied to Jesus, though it may be as a common noun.
It is applied to Jesus as a common noun and to God as a proper noun in John 1: 1, 2, as can be seen in the Greek, which, as we have shown, distinguishes between Jesus as a God and the Father twice, as the God. As a God Jesus is a very mighty one, mightier than any of the other gods (angels); but He is not the Almighty, which the Father alone is. Again, in Ps. 45: 6, 7, quoted by St. Paul in Heb. 1: 8, 9, the common noun use of elohim and theos, "O God" (O Mighty one), is applied by St. Paul to Jesus; but the proper noun use of it is applied to the Father, "Thy God," which expression proves the Father's superiority over the Son, since it calls Him our Lord's God. So, too, in Is. 9: 6 the word el, God, is used for our Lord; but it is a common noun, and refers to Him as a, not the Mighty God; for the article "the" before the words "Mighty God" should not have been used, as it is not in the Hebrew, neither is it in the Hebrew before the words, "Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace," the former title referring to His millennial and post-millennial fatherhood of the race, and the latter to His millennial rule of peace and prosperity. Some trinitarians quote 1 John 5: 20 as a proof that Jesus is God Almighty, though most of them and the ablest of them have given it up: "This is the true God." But the preceding part of the verse refers to the Father as the True One; for it shows that the True One is Jesus' Father, whom Jesus reveals to us. It will be noted that the word even before the expression, "in His Son" is in italics, i.e., it is inserted without having a corresponding word in the Greek. The connection, showing that we are in the Father (Col. 3: 3), proves that the word and, not even, should have been put into italics. Since the preceding part of v. 20 shows that Jesus has given us an
understanding of God as the True One, in whom we are, as well as in His Son, the expression, "This [one] is the true God," evidently refers to the Father, as now most of the ablest trinitarians concede.
Some, a minority of trinitarians, use the expression, "God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself" (2 Cor. 5: 19), as a proof that Christ is God Almighty. But note that God is here and also in vs. 18, 20, 21 markedly distinguished from Christ; for not only do vs. 18, 19, 20, 21 show them to be doing different things in the work of reconciliation, but also show that God is the Reconciled One, not Jesus, and that God used Him to do the work of reconciliation. Moreover the Greek word here translated "in" should, as in very many places it is, be translated with the word by or through, because it is through Christ that the reconciliation is effected. Rom. 5: 10, 11, as well as 2 Cor. 5: 18-21, proves the same thing. Hence this verse does not teach that Jesus is God Almighty; for He is not here even called God, as a common noun, let alone as a proper noun, which the Father alone is here called. 1 Tim. 3: 16, "God manifest in the flesh," was formerly used as a proof of the trinity; but the word God was mistakenly read into this passage for the word who, as even all trinitarian scholars now admit and as can be seen by the note to this verse in the A. R. V., or in critical recensions.
Tit. 2: 13 is also alleged as a proof of the trinity by some, who to find in it their thought, render the words in question as follows: "the appearing of the glory of our Great God and Savior Jesus Christ." This rendering is not preferred by a majority of the learned trinitarians, though it is a possible rendering. Rendered as in the A. V., A. R. V. text, and a majority of modern translations, not our Lord Jesus but the Father is here called God. The fact that, properly translated, Paul never calls Jesus God, but always contrasts Him as Lord with the Father as God, is decisive
on which is the right translation. Again, the connection (v. 11) naturally suggests that the bright shining is of the Father and of the Son. St. Paul's use of language, calling the Father God over 500 times and never once calling Jesus God, must rule in this case as to which is the right translation. Force, too, is added to our view by the words [A. R. V.] the glory of the Great God. This leads us to remark that while Thomas' exclamation, "My Lord and my God" (John 20: 28), is not that of an inspired man, it is nevertheless true; for Jesus is not only our Lord (Head), but also our God (Mighty One); but not our Almighty One, which the Father alone is. Hence this uninspired utterance of Thomas does not prove the trinity, as some trinitarians claim. Acts 20: 28, "Feed the Church of God, which He purchased with His own blood," is quoted by some trinitarians to prove the trinity. If, by the term God, the Father here is meant, it is used as a proper noun, and therefore cannot refer to Jesus. But if the Father is here meant we would have to say that God has blood, which is nonsense, for a spirit does not have flesh, bones or blood. There is, then, an unsolvable difficulty here by taking the passage as the A. V. reads. But considering that the great majority of the Greek MSS. have here, instead of the word God, the word Lord, which is the proper reading (A. R. V.), the difficulty vanishes: "Feed the Church of the Lord, which He purchased with His own blood." So read, there is nothing in this passage in favor of trinitarianism, rather a disproof of it.
Some ancient MSS. read in John 1: 18, "an only-begotten God," instead of "the only begotten Son"; and this reading is seized upon by trinitarians as a proof that Jesus is Almighty God, and that therefore the trinity doctrine is true. If this reading is correct, it gives trinitarians sorry comfort, for it carries on its face the proof that the word God here is a common noun. An only-begotten God implies that there are
other Gods who are not only-begotten; hence this proves that Jesus is not God Almighty. It, however, proves that He was the only direct Creation of God, God having created all the other gods, angels, through His agency (John 1: 3; Col. 1: 16). Sometimes in 2 Pet. 1: 1 the expression, translated in the A. V. as follows: "through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ," is by trinitarians rendered as follows: "the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ," and in this form is used to prove the trinity. But the Sinaitic MS. reading, Lord, instead of God, is by Biblical numerics proven true, and thus we are relieved of another supposed argument for the trinity, based on the word God being allegedly used of Jesus. The expression, "our Lord and Savior," is a favorite one in 2 Peter—1: 11; 2: 20; 3: 2, 18—to designate Jesus. Finally, trinitarians allege Rom. 9: 5 as a proof that Jesus is God Almighty, and that therefore the trinity doctrine is true. They translate it thus: "Of whom is Christ as concerning the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen." The A. R V. offers in its margin what we consider a better translation: "Of whom is Christ as concerning the flesh; He who is over all, God, be blessed forever. Amen." According to this translation it is not Christ who in this verse is spoken of as over all; but it is the Father.
The following things favor this rendering: The word Amen at the end of the sentence favors the idea of the last clause of v. 5 being a doxology. A doxology is in place here in view of the great favors, as the connection shows, that St. Paul enumerates as having been given his people, culminating in Christ's Advent, which is a prophecy of the return of special favor to Israel, because of those that they had had, as enumerated in vs. 4, 5. While St. Paul almost never in his writings makes a doxology to Christ, 1 Tim. 6: 16 being the only undoubted one, he frequently does to God. Again, the Greek words, ho on, should not be
translated who, as trinitarian translators give this passage, for they so translate it to make the last clause refer to Jesus. But they should be rendered, "He who," which proves that at least a semicolon, but preferably a period, should follow the word flesh, so that the rest of the verse is a coordinate or full sentence. Finally the trinitarian interpretation of this verse makes it contradict the universal teaching of the Bible that Christ is not God over all, i.e., the Supreme Being; but the Father, as God Almighty alone, is such. Thus we have examined every passage that trinitarians allege speak of Christ as God and have from these very passages shown that whenever the word God is applied to Him, it is as a common noun, which proves that He is not the Supreme God. Whenever the name God refers to the Supreme Being, it is used as a proper noun, and belongs alone to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus. This fact overthrows the contention of the trinitarians that the ascription of the word God to Jesus proves the trinity; for used as a common noun, as it is, when used of Jesus, it is not an exclusive name of God, since, as we have shown above, as a common noun it applies to angels and powerful and great men. Hence their argument that the name God is an exclusive appellation of the Deity, and, being applied to Jesus, proves Him to be the Deity is an error. It is not an exclusive appellation of Deity. Hence where to Jesus it is applied they must have other pertinent things beside to prove their point, which trinitarians have not yet been able to produce.
Trinitarians claim that the title Lord, applied to our Lord Jesus, proves that He is God Almighty. They darken this phase of the question by ignoring several facts: (1) That the word lord is a common noun, and not a proper noun; and (2) by conveying the impression that the Greek word Kyrios, Lord, means Jehovah, which it does not mean. That the word kyrios is a common noun, and not a proper
noun, is manifest from the following passages: Matt. 6: 24; 10: 24, 25; 15: 27; Luke 19: 33; John 12: 21; 15: 15, 20; 20: 15; Acts 16: 16, 19, 30; 25: 26; 1 Cor. 8: 5; Gal. 4: 1; Eph. 6: 5, 9; Col. 3: 22; 4: 1; 1 Pet. 3: 6; Rev. 7: 14. Accordingly, it is a title for rulers, nobles, owners, superiors, and is used in polite address. Hence it is not a title of God exclusively; therefore its use in connection with our Lord does not prove Him to be God Almighty. Trinitarians try from this title Kyrios to convey the thought that our Lord is Jehovah, because the latter word is translated Lord in the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament, and is in the Greek of the New Testament when quoting from the Septuagint given by Kyrios. In reply we would say, because the Jews in their superstitiousness refused to pronounce the Hebrew word translated Jehovah, the Jewish translation of the Old Testament into Greek, the Septuagint, never uses the word Jehovah, but in its stead uses the word Kyrios, whereas the word Jehovah, being a proper noun, should have been transliterated into Greek. It should never have been translated Lord; for it is a proper name, as it is Jehovah.
The course of the Septuagint led to the fact that the name Jehovah was never carried over into Greek; hence the New Testament uses the word Lord for Jehovah, Adon and Adonai without any distinction, which fact, since in the Old Testament the name Jehovah is the exclusive name of the Father, refutes the trinitarians' claim that the title Lord, applied to Jesus, proves Him to be Jehovah, and thus God Almighty. E.g., using Kyrios for both Jehovah and Adon, Jesus, St. Peter and St. Paul quote Ps. 110: 1, "The Lord [Jehovah] said unto my Lord [Adon]," and apply the word that stands for Adon, not the word that stands for Jehovah, to our Lord, while the word that is used for Jehovah they apply to the Father (Matt. 22: 41-45; Acts 2: 34-36; Heb. 1: 13),
which, among other examples, proves that Jehovah as a name did not go over into Greek, but through a Jewish superstition it was rendered into Greek by Kyrios, Lord. Trinitarians to ward off the force of the one God and one Lord and the God and Lord contrasting passages, e.g., 1 Cor. 8: 6; Jude 25, see A. R. V., etc., claim that calling the Father here the one God, no more proves that Jesus is not God than calling Jesus the one Lord proves that the Father is not Lord. To this we reply that Deity in its very nature always implies lordship, while lordship does not necessarily imply Deity, as the examples above show. Hence this evasion of theirs does not meet the point. Our examination of the trinitarians' claim that the names, Jehovah, God, Lord, belong exclusively to God, and being applied to Jesus prove Him to be God Almighty, and thus prove the trinity doctrine, has resulted in this, that the only one of these words that is exclusively applicable to God, Jehovah, is never applied to our Lord as His name, that the word God, when used as a proper noun, is the name of the Supreme Being alone, and is never applied to Jesus in the Bible, though the common noun God is, and that the word Lord is a common noun, and is applied in the Bible to any superior or any one treated as a superior in politeness. Hence the trinitarian argument on the alleged exclusive names of God being applied in the Bible to Jesus, falls to the ground, which leaves the point intended to be proved by it hanging in the air.
We will now take up their second argument for their fourth alleged indirect proof of the trinity, i.e., the attributes that the Bible exclusively ascribes to God it expressly ascribes to Jesus Christ. These attributes they claim are, past eternity, supremacy, omnipresence, omnipotence and omniscience. We have already refuted their idea that our Lord always was and is God's equal, and hence is supreme. We have also shown that their claim of the Logos' being from
eternity is not proven by Mic. 5: 2 (goings forth have been from old, from everlasting); nor by Is. 9: 6 (everlasting Father); nor by John 1: 1, 2 (in a, not the beginning). The Bible teaches many beginnings, none of them meaning without beginning, which is meant by the past eternity, e.g., of the universe (Gen. 1: 1), of man (Matt. 19: 4, 8), of the Gospel Age (Luke 1: 1, 2; 2 Thes. 2: 13), of the second world (Heb. 1: 10), and of the period of angelic creation before the creation of the universe (John 1: 1, 2). In every one of the passages just cited the original read in a beginning, not in the beginning; the very word means the reverse of eternity, which is without a beginning. They quote Heb. 13: 8, "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever," as an alleged proof of our Lord's past eternity, interpreting its yesterday as meaning the past eternity, its today as the present, and its forever as the future eternity. Our understanding of this verse is that the yesterday refers to the Jewish Age, which is Biblically referred to as a day, while eternity is never Biblically called a day (Rom. 10: 21; Heb. 1: 2, literally, "the last one of these days." These days are the three Days or Ages of the second world, (the Patriarchal, Jewish and Gospel Days or Ages], whose last day is the Gospel Day or Age); its today refers to the Gospel Age (Rom. 8: 36; 2 Cor. 6: 2; Heb. 3: 13, 15) and its forever refers to the future eternity. Had St. Paul here referred to Jesus as having existed from eternity he would not have used the word yesterday, which does not imply duration without a beginning, just as the word today does not mean eternity; rather he would have used some term meaning the past eternity, even as when he refers to the future eternity he does not use the word tomorrow but uses a term expressive of eternity. That in this verse St. Paul did not mean that our Lord was without a beginning is manifest from the fact that he believed Him to have had a beginning,
as the firstborn of every creature (Col. 1: 15, compare with Rev. 3: 14). Hence neither this verse nor any other teaches that Christ is from eternity.
We have already in the following passages given sufficient proof to the effect that Jesus is inferior to the Father: John 14: 28; 10: 29; 1 Cor. 3: 23; 11: 3; 15: 28; Phil. 2: 6, A. R. V.; 1 Pet. 1: 3; Ps. 45: 6, 7; Mic. 5: 4, which are a few among many that might be quoted to prove it. The only passage that they quote to prove He is the Father's equal is John 10: 30, which says nothing about the subject. We have already discussed the passage as not proving that He and the Father are one God. To their use of Matt. 18: 20, "Where two or three are gathered … there am I in the midst," and Matt. 28: 20, "Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the Age," to prove His bodily omnipresence, we reply: Their interpretation must be wrong; for His bodily presence throughout the Age has been in heaven (Acts 3: 21). Moreover His presence with His Church has been by the Holy Spirit as His Representative (John 14: 16-18, 26; 15: 26; 16: 7). To their use of Matt. 28: 18, "All authority was given me in heaven and on earth," as a proof of His being omnipotent, we reply: (1) This passage proves that there was a time when He did not have all authority in heaven and earth (has been given unto me), which disproves His having omnipotence as an inherent quality; (2) this passage proves that He is God's appointed Vicegerent; (3) this passage ascribes to Him as God's Vicegerent not all power (dynamis), but all authority (exousia); (4) this passage proves that whatever authority He exercises, He exercises it not as His own, but as God's, whose Vicegerent He was made in His resurrection (Heb. 1: 3-5; Phil. 2: 9-11; Eph. 1: 19-23; Rev. 5: 9-13). No passage of the Bible ascribes omnipresence and omnipotence to Christ, as inherent qualities of His own. To their use of John 21: 17, "Lord, thou knowest
all things," as a proof of His having omniscience, we reply: Peter did not utter these words by inspiration. Moreover, Peter likely meant by the expression, "Lord, thou knowest all things," not that Jesus was omniscient, but that He knew everything about Peter and therefore knew that Peter loved Him. There is no inspired Scripture that teaches that Jesus is omniscient. Mark 13: 32; Acts 1: 7 prove that He is not omniscient. Eternity, supremacy, omnipresence, omnipotence and omniscience are attributes that belong exclusively to the Father inherently. Hence the assertion of trinitarians to the effect that the attributes which the Bible exclusively ascribe to the Father are by the Bible expressly ascribed to Jesus, is a false statement, as to matters of fact; hence their second argument for their fourth alleged indirect proof of the trinity falls down.
The third argument for the fourth alleged indirect proof that trinitarians give for their doctrine is, that the works that the Bible ascribes to God alone are expressly in it ascribed to Jesus. These works they enumerate as follows: Creation and preservation (John 1: 3; Heb. 1: 3), power to forgive sins (Matt. 9: 6) and the execution of judgment (John 5: 27). To this we reply, that these powers were all used by our Lord, not of His own inherent possession, but as God's Agent and Representative. This is proven as to creation and preservation by the following passages: 1 Cor. 8: 6; Eph. 3: 9; Heb. 1: 2, 3. In none of the passages treating of His creating all things (John 1: 3; Col. 1: 16) is the preposition hypo (by) used, but the prepositions en and dia (through) are used, which do not indicate original creatorship, as hypo does, but agent or subordinate creatorship. Accordingly, His acting as God's Agent in creation not only does not prove that He is God Almighty, but disproves it. That original authority to forgive sins belongs to God alone, and that God delegated to Jesus, by virtue of His bringing the Ransom, authority as God's direct Agent
to forgive sins, is evident from the following passages Rom. 4: 8; 2 Cor. 5: 18-21; Eph. 4: 32; Col. 2: 13; 1 John 1: 7, 8; Luke 24: 47; Acts 2: 38; 10: 36; 13: 38, 39; 1 John 2: 1, 2. Thus in this matter His authority is a derived, not an original one, which is evident from the fact that sin is an offense against God, not against Christ, and that God to forgive sins arranged for Christ to provide the Ransom for its forgiveness. The same principle applies as to matter of executing judgment. God is the original judge (Heb. 10: 30; 12: 23, please note how He is in v. 23 contrasted, as judge, with Jesus, as Mediator, in v. 24; Rom. 3: 6); but He delegates to Jesus, as His Agent, the judging work, as the following passages show: John 5: 22, 27; Acts 17: 31; Rom. 2: 16. Thus the relation of the Father and Son in the work of judging proves that the Son is God's Agent therein, and does not act as original judge; hence this work of executing judgment does not prove Him to be God. Accordingly, none of God's exclusive works does He do, which disproves the third argument for the fourth alleged indirect proof that the Son is God Almighty; and this fact of His being God's Agent in these works, accordingly, does not prove the trinity doctrine; rather it disproves it; for an agent is inferior to his employer.
The fourth and final argument for the fourth alleged indirect proof that trinitarians offer for Jesus being God Almighty, and that they claim, accordingly, proves the trinity doctrine, is that in the Bible the honor that belongs to God alone is expressly ascribed to our Lord. This honor they say is worship, reverence.
In proof that Jesus is given such honor and worship they cite John 5: 23; Phil. 2: 10; Heb. 1: 6. We agree that our Lord is to be honored by our exalting Him highly in our motives, thoughts, words and deeds, and is to be worshiped. But we deny that He is to have such equally with the Father; but is to receive them as the Father's Representative and Plenipotentiary.