Dr. Pyuwarmer flipped the chart closed, took off his
reading glasses, and let out a long sigh. “John, there is
a procedure that can save your life. I’d like you to
John Skeptich rubbed his temples and looked up. “Well, is
it an invasive procedure?”
“Well, that’s hard to
answer, John. Yes and no.”
“You call that an
answer, doc?” John’s frustration was beginning to show.
“Either it is or it isn’t.”
“Well, it’s kind of
both. I’m sorry, but it’s hard to describe. It’s a very
advanced procedure, and I don’t really understand it fully
myself. However, I think you should have it done.”
“Do you have any
literature that can explain it?”
“Well, yes, but it’s
not very clearly spelled out. You kind of have to read
between the lines. It’s all in there though.”
John could no longer
hide his frustration. He stood up, grabbed his coat, and
fixed Dr. Pyuwarmer with a hard look. “Look doctor.
You’re asking me to submit to a procedure you don’t
understand and can’t explain. With all due respect, I’ll
take my chances!” With that, John swept out the door,
slamming it so hard that Dr. Pyuwarmer’s medical school
diploma fell from the wall.
Putting yourself in John’s shoes, it’s easy to see how
hard it would be to put your faith in something that your
doctor didn’t even understand. Just as in this analogy,
Christians must be prepared to explain our faith with
nonbelievers. There are few things more important for
Christians to understand than the nature of God. Many of
the differences between biblical Christianity and cults
occur within the context of variant understandings of the
nature of God. If we are to worship God in truth (John
4:24) and share the truth with others, it is vitally
important that we have an understanding of what the Bible
says about God.
Perhaps the single most misunderstood doctrine regarding
the nature of God is the doctrine of the Trinity.
Believers and nonbelievers alike have a difficult time
comprehending God’s triune nature, and those that do
understand have a difficult time explaining it. As
critics of the Trinity are quick to point out, the word
“Trinity” is not found in the Bible, and no single verse
provides a summary of the Trinitarian doctrine. In an
email we received, LDS apologist D.L. Barksdale said, “The
homoousion Trinitarian dogma is heretical to anyone who
cherishes the Bible. It is an unbiblical doctrine…”
Complicating the issue are various misconceptions about
the Trinity within Christianity as well as from without.
Jehovah’s Witnesses and Mormons disregard the Trinity,
believing that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three
distinct gods, with the Father being a greater God than
the other two. Jehovah’s Witnesses especially emphasize
the subordination of the Godhead, believing Jesus
to be Michael the Archangel – a created being, and a
lesser “god” than Jehovah. Mormon doctrine is
polytheistic (worship of multiple gods), though some
Mormons will stress that their belief is henotheistic
(belief in multiple gods, but worship of only one).
Mohammad’s misunderstanding of the Trinity was apparently
affected by the hyperdulia veneration of Mary seen in the
Eastern and Roman Catholic churches, as the Qur’an accuses
Christians of believing the Trinity to be composed of God
the Father, Jesus, and Mary. Indeed, the doctrine of the
Trinity can pose a stumbling block for some people. A
Jehovah’s Witness sent us an email that included the
following (the English is poor, but you’ll see the
point): “And when I can not find in any Bible that I
read that there is a 3 headed god that will resurrect
anyone on this earth, both now or ever. If this 3 headed
god is your belief? I have never read about such a god in
any Christian Bible that I have ever read!” As I told
this man, we agree that the Bible does not teach of a
three-headed god. That sounds more akin to the hydra of
Greek mythology. Yet this illustrates the extent of the
misunderstandings. Even Christian churches have been
victimized by erroneous doctrines such as modalism,
particularly Oneness theology.
We may never fully understand the nature of God until we
get into heaven. God is omnipotent, omniscient,
omnipresent, and eternal. Our finite created minds are
unable to fully grasp these characteristics of God.
However, it is possible to have a basic understanding of
the triune nature of God, and to be able to defend this
doctrine with the Word of God. In this article, we’ll
assess the Scriptural evidence and put the pieces together
until they form a full picture. A triune God will be the
only possible verdict based on an objective analysis of
the Scriptural evidence.
The doctrine of the Trinity can be summed up as follows:
Within the one Being that is God, there exist eternally
three coequal and coeternal Persons, namely, the Father,
the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
In order to prove this doctrine we must prove the
There is only
The Father is
Jesus is God
Spirit is God
Son, and Holy Spirit are three distinct Persons.
Each point above is very important, and we will clearly
illustrate each. Heresy arises when these distinctions
are blurred. For instance, modalism (also known as
Oneness theology) would agree with items one through four,
but item five is where modalism fails. However, as James
White said in regards to the doctrine of the Trinity, “For
some reason many feel that there is a hierarchy of ‘error’
when it comes to the Trinity…. We are to worship God in
spirit and in truth, and two-thirds of the truth is not a
valid substitute, no matter which one-third of His truth
we choose to reject.”
There is a treasure trove of Scriptures to support each of
the points we’ll be studying. To keep this article at a
reasonable length, where there are several relevant
verses, I’ll limit the full verse quotation to two verses
(in NIV, unless stated otherwise), and give the Scripture
references for the rest.
1. There is only one God:
Islam, Judaism, and Christianity are known as the big
three monotheistic religions. You won’t find many
arguments among Muslims, Jews, and Christians that there
is more than one God, except perhaps among some aberrant
sects. Nevertheless, let us establish this Scripturally
before we move on to areas where disagreements will arise.
A. There is only one God:
shown these things so that you might know that the LORD
is God; besides him there is no other.” – Deuteronomy
"This is what
the LORD says- Israel's King and Redeemer, the LORD
I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is
no God.” – Isaiah 44:6
Testament Verses: Deut. 4:39; 32:39; 2 Sam. 22:32; Isa.
37:20; 43:10; 44:6-8; 45:5, 14, 21-22; 46:9.
“How can you
believe if you accept praise from one another, yet make
no effort to obtain the praise that comes from the only
God?” – John 5:44
is only one God, who will justify the circumcised by
faith and the uncircumcised through that same faith.”
Testament Verses: Rom. 16:27; 1 Cor. 8:4-6; Gal. 3:20;
Eph. 4:6, 1 Tim. 1:17; 2:5; James 2:19; Jude 25.
B. There is only one true God:
“But the LORD
is the true God; he is the living God, the eternal
King. When he is angry, the earth trembles; the nations
cannot endure his wrath.” – Jeremiah 10:10
“We know also
that the Son of God has come and has given us
understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And
we are in him who is true--even in his Son Jesus Christ.
He is the true God and eternal life.” – 1 John 5:20.
2 Chron. 15:3; John 17:3; 1 Thess. 1:9.
C. All other so-called “gods” are false gods.
“For all the
gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the
heavens.” – Psalm 96:5
about eating food sacrificed to idols: We know that an
idol is nothing at all in the world and that there is no
God but one.” – 1 Corinthians 8:4
verses: Deut. 32:21; 1 Sam. 12:21; Isa. 37:19;
41:23-24, 29; Jer. 2:11; 5:7; 16:20; 1 Cor. 10:19-20.
The verses above are clear evidence that there is only one
God. This is known as monotheism. Judaism, Islam,
and Christianity are known as the three great monotheistic
religions. However, Islam and Judaism will fall off as we
continue our support of the Trinity.
2. There is a plurality to God.
The Hebrew word for God is el in its singular
form. The most common form used for God is elohim,
which is plural in form. How can there be plural form
used for only one God? Some suggest that the answer is
found in the three persons of the Trinity. Others contend
that the plural construct denotes a fullness of deity as
opposed to plurality. I submit that both interpretations
are correct. I’m getting ahead of myself now though.
Rather than look at all the verses that use the plural
elohim, let’s look at other verses that point to a
plurality within the one God.
make man in our image” – Genesis 1:26, emphasis
‘Behold, the man has become like one of us…’” –
Genesis 3:22, emphasis added.
Some would say that God could be speaking to the angels in
these verses, but that's simply not correct. God was
speaking to co-creator(s) in these verses (“Let us make
man…”). Who could be a co-creator? Not the angels. The
answer is found later in this article.
3. The Father is God.
This isn’t really an item that is in question. While God
the Father is only known as the Father in the New
Testament, Christians, Jews, Muslims, and pseudo-Christian
cults understand that the Father in the New Testament is
the Yahweh of the Old Testament, though some disagree with
the characterization of “Father”. However, it is
important to establish that the Father of the New
Testament is the true God referred to in the Old
Testament, known often as Yahweh, or “Jehovah”.
A. The Father is God.
“Praise be to
the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father
of compassion and the God of all comfort,” – 2
“Praise be to
the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has
blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual
blessing in Christ.” – Ephesians 1:3
verses: John 17:3; 1 Cor. 8:6; 1 Peter 1:3; (Note: Some
verses seem to indicate that Jesus is not God at first
glance. These will be explained later).
B. The God of the Old Testament is known as
Yahweh/Jehovah (“The LORD”).
shown these things so that you might know that the LORD
is God; besides him there is no other…. Acknowledge and
take to heart this day that the LORD is God in heaven
above and on the earth below. There is no other.” –
Deuteronomy 4:35, 39.
the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.” – Psalm
verses: Gen. 9:26; 24; Exo. 3:14-18; 4:5; 2 Sam. 7:22,
From the verses above, it is clear that Yahweh/Jehovah in
the Old Testament is the one God. It is also clear that
the Father in the New Testament is that one God. Now,
let’s look at whether Jesus Christ is God. Remember,
there is only one God. There is also a mysterious
plurality to this one God. We have established that the
Father is Yahweh, the God of the Old Testament. We now
explore the plurality in the one true God.
4. Jesus is God.
There is a great deal of Scriptural evidence that Jesus
Christ is God. The evidence is comprised not only of
specific statements, but also in prophecy fulfillment and
his attributes. Let’s first look at some of explicit
Scriptural evidence. In this section, we won’t limit
ourselves to only giving the text of two verses.
beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and
the Word was God…. No one has ever seen God, but God the
One and Only, who is at the Father's side, has made him
known.” – John 1:1
to him, ‘My Lord and my God!’” – John 20:28
I want to pause just a moment to discuss the verses
above. The Greek word for God is theos. In John
1:1, we read that the Word (Jesus) was with theos
and was indeed theos. Jesus was (and is) God!
This is a very powerful statement! The word theos
is used not only in John 1:1, but also in verse 18 and in
John 20:28. Theos is used in the New Testament in
reference to Jehovah/Yahweh God. Theos is also
used in reference to Jesus. We’re beginning to see the
plurality found within the one God.
worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and
power, for you created all things, and by your will they
were created and have their being." – Revelation 4:11
(the words of the 24 elders to Jesus).
shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his
own blood.” – Acts 20:28
Once again, in the verses above Jesus is referred to as
theos. In Acts 20:28, we know that Jesus shed His
blood for the church, and as one person of the triune God,
this action is the action of God. Now let’s look at some
common compound references to Jesus:
glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus
Christ” – Titus 2:13
who through the righteousness of our God and Savior
Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours”
– 2 Peter 1:1
In the passages above, both “God” and “Savior” are used in
reference to Jesus Christ. There is no division of the
clause. Scholar Robert Reymond writes, “The two nouns
[‘God’ and ‘Savior’] both stand under the regimen of the
single definitive article preceding ‘God,’ indicating…that
they are to be construed corporately, not separately, or
that they have a single referent.”
In other words, attempts to divide this clause into a
reference to God and a separate reference to Jesus as
Savior flies against the Greek grammatical construct.
These verses provide additional powerful and clear
evidence that Jesus is Jehovah/Yahweh God. Let’s now turn
our attention to more verses that reveal Jesus to be
“That if you
confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in
your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will
be saved…. for, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the
Lord will be saved.’” – Romans 10:9,13. Note: Paul
reveals Jesus to be the same “Lord” referred to in Joel
2:32, which he quotes. In Joel 2:32, “LORD” is
“…that at the
name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on
earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that
Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” –
Philippians 2:10-11. Note: “Lord” = Jehovah/Yahweh.
you have tasted that the Lord is good.” – 1 Peter 2:3.
This verse is taken almost identically from Psalms 34:8,
where “Lord” is Jehovah/Yahweh. From the verses that
follow verse 3, it is clear this is a reference to
Another way we know that Jesus is Jehovah/Yahweh comes
from the fulfillment of an Old Testament prophecy.
Zechariah 12:10 says, “And I will pour out on the house of
David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace
and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have
pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an
only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for
a firstborn son.” This verse is part of an oracle given
by Jehovah/Yahweh. This passage starts off in verse 1,
“This is the word of the LORD concerning Israel. The LORD,
who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of
the earth, and who forms the spirit of man within him,
declares…” Jehovah/Yahweh prophesies that He will be
pierced. It is widely accepted among scholarly circles
that this was fulfilled in the crucifixion and spearing of
Jesus Christ. This is confirmed in Revelation 1:7 wherein
we read concerning Jesus, “Look, he is coming with the
clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced
him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because
of him. So shall it be! Amen.” This is important enough
to go over again. In Zechariah 12:10, Jehovah/Yahweh
prophesies that He (Jehovah/Yahweh) will be pierced, and
people will mourn for Him. Jesus Christ is pierced
through his hands and feet at his crucifixion, and pierced
through the side with a spear while on the cross.
Revelation 1:7 confirms this fulfillment of prophecy.
Conclusion? Jesus Christ is Jehovah/Yahweh!
Another evidence that Jesus is Jehovah/Yahweh comes from
His role as Savior. Isaiah 43:11 says, “I, even I, am the
LORD, and apart from me there is no savior.” Yet Jesus is
referred to many times in the New Testament as our Savior
(Luke 2:11; John 4:42; Acts 13:23; Eph. 5:23; Phi. 3:20; 1
Tim. 1:1; 2 Tim. 1:10; Tit 1:4; 2:13; 3:6; 2 Pet. 1:1,11;
2:20; 3:2,18; 1 John 4:14).
Jesus caused no small uproar among the Jews of the day
because He accepted praise and worship – blasphemous if He
were not God! As we have seen, only God is the savior of
men. Matthew 21:1-11 describes Jesus’ triumphal entry
into Jerusalem. He came riding in on a donkey, in
fulfillment of an Old Testament messianic prophecy (Zec.
9:9). As Jesus rode in, we find the crowds that surrounded
him shouting “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed
is he who comes in the name of
the Lord!” “Hosanna
in the highest!” Webster’s 1913 dictionary defined
Hosanna as “A Hebrew exclamation of praise to the Lord.”
The word is derived from a Hebrew word that meant “Save
us,” in a prayer directed to God. This shows that the
crowd viewed Jesus as God and Savior. It is important to
note that Jesus did not rebuke the crowd for this praise.
In verse 15, we find that the chief priests and Pharisees
were outraged and indignant at this (because, as we said,
this would be blasphemy for a mere man). Children had
followed Jesus in to the temple are and were still
shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” In verse
16, they asked Jesus if He could hear what the children
were saying. No doubt they were shocked that he would not
have straightened out the blasphemy of these little
urchins. But Jesus did not rebuke the children. Instead,
He answered, “Yes. Have you never read, ‘From the lips
of children and infants you have ordained praise’?”
Additionally, in John 9:35-39 we read the following
heard that they had thrown him out, and when he found him,
he said, "Do you believe
in the Son of Man?"
36"Who is he, sir?" the man asked. "Tell me so
that I may believe in him."
37Jesus said, "You
have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with
38Then the man said, "Lord, I believe,"
and he worshiped him. [emphasis added]
39Jesus said, "For
judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind
will see and those who see will become blind."
Jesus accepted worship. This is
not adoration of a mere prophet, but praise and worship
due only to God. Jesus was either God or He was crazy,
and there is ample evidence against the latter and in
support of the former. Further evidence comes from the
fact that Jesus has many of the attributes of God:
1:3, 1 Cor. 8:6; Col 1:16-17; Heb. 1:2; Rev. 3:14)
(Heb. 1:10-12; 13:8)
1:1; 8:58; 17:5; Col. 1:17; Heb. 1:2)
(Matt. 18:20; 28:20; John 3:13; Eph. 1:23; 4:10; Col.
It is clear from the Scriptural
evidence above that Jesus is God. He is the LORD
(Jehovah/Yahweh) of the Old Testament, and therefore is
the one true elohim or theos. He shares
this role as God with the Father. As we are about to see,
He also shares this role with the Holy Spirit.
5. The Holy Spirit is God
Less Scripture is dedicated to
the Holy Spirit, but there is enough to conclude that He
too is God. In Acts 5:3-4, we see the Holy Spirit being
equated with God:
said, ‘Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your
heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and
have kept for yourself some of the money you received
for the land? Didn't it belong to you before it was
sold? And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your
disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing?
You have not lied to men but to God.’” [emphasis
Paul clearly and explicitly
equated the Holy Spirit with God:
“Now the Lord
is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is,
there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all
reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his
likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from
the Lord, who is the Spirit.” – 2 Corinthians 3:17-18
Additional evidence of the deity
of the Holy Spirit comes from the shared attributes of the
deity. The Holy Spirit is:
In addition to the attributes
above, we find the Holy Spirit was involved in creation
(Gen. 1:2; Psa. 104:30), the incarnation (Matt. 1:18,20;
Luke 1:35), and the resurrection (Rom. 1:4; 8:11). This
is ample evidence to show that the Holy Spirit is God. We
have now proven Scripturally that there is only one God.
We have also proven that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
can each lay claim to being God. However, one can believe
in all this, and still subscribe to the erroneous belief
Modalists believe that there is
only one God, but believe God to be comprised of one
Person who simply manifests Himself at different times
through Father, Son, or Holy Spirit. In other words,
modalists believe that God is one in substance as well as
essence – the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are not
distinct persons. As we shall see, modalism fails because
the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are indeed three distinct
6. The Father, Son, and Holy
Spirit are three distinct persons.
A. Jesus is not the Father:
First, let’s turn our attention to Matthew 28:19, “Therefore
go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in
the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy
Spirit”. The grammatical construction of this verse
is very revealing with regards to Trinitarian doctrine.
First, each person of the Trinity is identified
individually with use of the definite article preceding
each (the Father…the Son…the
Holy Spirit). The use of the definite article for each
person of the Trinity identifies each as unique and
distinct from the others. Yet at the same time, this
verse groups each into a singular entity by use of the
singular form “the name of”. What is this name? The
singular name of God is Yahweh/Jehovah, and the
Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit share
that name. Other verses identify the Father and the Son
as two separate persons (John 3:17, 35; 5:22-23, 31-32;
8:16-18; 11:41-42; 12:28; 14:31; 17:1-26; Rom. 1:7; 1 Cor.
1:3; 15:24-28; 2 Cor. 1:2; Gal. 1:3; 4:4; Eph. 1:2; 6:23;
Phil. 1:2; 1 Thess. 1:1; 2 Thess. 1:1-2; 1 Tim. 1:1-2; 2
Tim. 1:2; Tit. 1:4; Phm. 3; James 1:1; 2 Pet. 1:2; 1 John
4:10; 2 John 3).
B. Jesus is not the Holy
Spirit: The first evidence of this is discussed in
detail in the preceding paragraph – Matthew 28:19
identifies the Son and the Holy Spirit as separate
persons, using definite articles preceding each. Next,
Jesus tells us that He would send the Holy Spirit (“When
the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the
Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father,
he will testify about me.” – John 15:26). This verse
is revealing in that each person of the Trinity is
mentioned as separate individual persons. Key elements in
this verse include 1) Jesus will send the Holy Spirit, 2)
from the Father, 3) the Holy Spirit will go out from
the Father, 4) and will testify about Jesus. Another
verse that identifies Jesus and the Holy Spirit separately
is John 16:7, “But I tell you the truth: It is for your
good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor
will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.”
Here we have two important elements: 1) Jesus will go
away, and 2) send the Holy Spirit. Since Jesus arose and
ascended in his physical human body, the Spirit He sends
is not Jesus Himself. Another important verse is John
14:16, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you
another Counselor to be with you forever” (emphasis
added). Once again, the elements are here to show that
Jesus, the Father, and the Holy Spirit are separate.
Jesus said He would ask the Father. If Jesus were simply
a manifestation of the Father, then He would be asking
Himself, which sounds neurotic rather than orthodox. The
verse also refers to the Holy Spirit as “another
Counselor” separate from Jesus.
C. The Father is not the
Holy Spirit: Once again, the first bit of evidence is
given in Matthew 28:19 as discussed before. John 14:16,
and 15:26 also remain as evidence that the Father and Holy
Spirit are distinct persons. As we delved into each verse
in the preceding paragraph, we won’t do so again. We also
find Paul describing in Romans 8:26-27 that the Holy
Spirit intercedes for us with the Father. If the Holy
Spirit were the same person as the Father, he would not
need to intercede with himself.
Now let’s address another
Scripture that makes it clear that the Father, the Son,
and the Holy Spirit are three different persons. Luke
3:21-22 covers the baptism of Jesus Christ, “When all the
people were being baptized, Jesus was baptized too. And as
he was praying, heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit
descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice
came from heaven: ‘You are my Son, whom I love; with you I
am well pleased.’” Each person is described separately
here. First, note that Jesus was praying. If Oneness
theology were correct, Jesus would be praying to Himself.
Once again, that smacks of neurosis. Instead, Jesus was
praying to the Father. As He did, the Holy Spirit
descended on Jesus in a physical manifestation like a
dove. The voice of the Father was then heard from Heaven,
speaking to the Son. This highlights that each person of
the Trinity is unique and separate.
It is clear from a reading of
the Bible that there is only one God, known in the Old
Testament as Yahweh/Jehovah. It is clear that the Father,
the Son, and the Holy Spirit are each God (Yahweh). It is
also clear, in contrast to Oneness theology (Unitarian
modalism), that each person is separate and distinct from
the other. One God in three persons – the Biblical
is important in understanding the Trinity. Ontology is
the study of “being.” As James White said, “It is vitally
important that we recognize the difference between the
words Being and Person…. Being is
what makes something what it is. Person is
what makes someone who he or she is…. when speaking
of the Trinity, we speak of one what (the Being of
God) and three whos (the three divine Persons).
Most cultic rejections of the Trinity focus on blurring
Are you still having a difficult
time comprehending the triune nature of God? That’s
understandable. The laws to which we are bound define our
comprehension. God’s nature transcends these laws. If we
could fully comprehend God’s nature, he would cease to be
Almighty God. He would be lesser than He truly is. I am
a devotee of analogies. One analogy I like to use with
regards to the Trinity is my computer. My computer
consists of input devices (mouse and keyboard), output
devices (monitor, printer, speakers), and the central
processing unit. These different components form my one
computer. This analogy fails to capture the full
complexity of the substance of God, but it can help
someone to grasp the basic relationship.
It is true, as so many Mormons,
Muslims, and Jehovah’s Witness are inclined to point out,
that there is no concise, clear teaching of the Trinity in
the New Testament or Old Testament. However, by such
reasoning, there is also no clear teaching regarding
smoking or illicit drug use. Yet by examining Scripture
in its greater context, it is clear that our body is the
temple of God (1 Cor. 6:19) and Paul urges us to purify
ourselves from things which contaminate the body (2 Cor.
7:1). Similarly, by examining the sum of Scripture in
immediate and greater context, it is clear that God is
triune. He is one God, eternally existent in three divine
persons – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. We
must be able to defend this biblical doctrine if we are to
effectively contend for the truth of the gospel.
[Author’s note: In the
coming weeks, we will post a follow-up article to examine
and refute the most common objections raised against the
Trinity by various cults, such as the Jehovah’s Witnesses
and the Mormon Church.]
1. James R. White, Loving the
Trinity, (Christian Research Journal, Volume
21/ Issue 4).
Hebrew name for God is YHWH – four consonants
only. Because of a nearly superstitious fear of taking
the Lord’s name in vain, the Jews avoided using this name,
and often used the name Adonai. Eventually, the
vowels from Adonai were included in YHWH to form
Yahowah. Today, this name is often spelled in
English, Yahweh. As a human contrivance, Yahowah
mutated to Jehovah in some manuscripts. Yahweh and
Jehovah are considered synonymous, and mean “The LORD.”
The Hebrew word for “God” is el or elohim.
4. In these
verses, and the ones that follow, “LORD” is
Yahweh/Jehovah, and “God” is elohim. It is
important to note that el is singular, but
elohim is plural. Since the Bible is clear that there
is only one el, the plurality of elohim can
present a conundrum. This problem is resolved by the
doctrine of the Trinity – three divine Persons in one
God. One should also note that the New World Translation
(The Bible of the Jehovah’s Witnesses) and the ASV leave
out “LORD” and simply include “Jehovah”.
L. Reymond, Jesus, Divine Messiah: The New Testament
Witness (Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed,
1990), p. 276.
Loving the Trinity