Sunday, June 25, 2006

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Sunday, April 09, 2006

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A Very Important Message for Seventh Day Adventists

Is God a 'trinity'?

In a recent promo for the book THE TRINITY by Whidden, Moon, and Reeve, the change in the church's position is acknowledged thus:

"Among Seventh-day Adventist the Doctrine of the Trinity. . .

is often taken for granted. But increasingly it is opposed by a small minority who have retreated to the anti-Trinitarian position of the pioneers."

The above statement acknowledges a couple of serious issues that we must come face to face with:

If our founding leaders were wrong in there understanding of who God is, then our church was founded on the worst of heresies. Not only that, but we would also owe an apology to Kellogg and those who eventually accepted the doctrine of the trinity ( Jones, Waggoner, and Canright ) because of his teaching, and left the church. Why did they give up doctrines that they at one time held dear once they accepted the doctrine of the trinity? Kellogg said that the "battle would be to the bitter end" and that "the old traditional theories would be rolled under". I guess this makes Kellogg the church's premiere prophet because this has truly come true, for in the 1920's Froom took these same theories and revamped them and the 'new theology' was on a roll. In 1928 his book The Coming of the Comforter and his speaking tour of our colleges and seminaries turned the tide of thinking in our church. The timing was right, the church was tired of being called a cult, and like Israel of old was ready to return to 'Egypt', and the 'Beast' was ready to be healed. In 1929 the Lateran Concordant was signed and the Catholic Church was once again a power to contend with, in 1930 our church publishing house decided to include the trinity doctrine in the baptismal vows for 1931. Now we were acknowledging that the Catholic Church 'the mother church' had become our mother, for the trinity is truly the doctrine that established the Catholic Church, it also brought the Bishop of Rome to power.

It is no wonder that Ellen White trembled when she saw what would take place in a few short years. It is often claimed that she believed in the trinity after her husband died and she was no longer under his influence, but The Great Controversy was written in 1888 then revised in 1907 and 1911 which is after her husbands death and both revisions were after 1903 when Kellogg was promoting the trinity doctrine with her writings, the same ones that some now use to 'prove' the trinity, the same ones that she said that he was twisting their meaning and using out of context, and that therefore he didn't believe the Testimonies. In The Great Controversy she states that the 'promised comforter' is Jesus, in referring to the Godhead speaks of 'both', and said that Jesus was the "only one in all the universe that could enter into the councils of God", these statements leave no room for the concept of a trinity.

In a recent NPUC Gleaner editorial (Mar 2006 ) Jere Patzer asks us the question, 'Scripture or Tradition?', and that seems to be the question of the hour, we cannot have it both ways. We are supposed to have the Elijah message, 'why halt ye between two opinions, if the LORD be God follow Him, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it. (1 Kings 18:21, Isaiah 40:3-5)

The time has come to open the scripture for ourselves and let God's Word speak to our hearts and minds instead of letting theologians do our thinking for us.

May God bless and guide you as you open His Word.

Gordon Sheidler

Look at the 37 minute video on this subject by clicking on the link below.
(High speed internet very helpful)

Alpha & Omega of Seventh-day Adventists

Is God a 'trinity'?

By Gordon Sheidler

If God is a trinity then:

Why, since Mary clearly conceived Jesus by the Holy Spirit doesn't Jesus refer to the Holy Spirit as His father? For if the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead as a separate being, then, the Spirit would be His father and not the Father His father.

Why did Jesus say that He came to show us the Father, why not show us the 'trinity'? Jn14:8, 9;16:25; Matt11:27; Luke10:22

Why did Jesus say, "I and the Father are one", (Jn 10:30) but he never says, 'I and the father and the Holy Spirit are one'?

Why did Jesus say, " man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him." Lk 10:22 (Mt 11:27)? If the Holy Spirit is another being of the Godhead wouldn't he know the other members?

Why did Jesus say in John 8:16-18 that He had two witnesses, He and His Father, to verify His testimony, when the law in Deuteronomy that He appeals to says that two or three witnesses are required? So why didn't He give three witnesses, would not that have strengthened His argument if He could have included the Holy Spirit as the third witness?

Why did Jesus say, "And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ..." If the trinity was necessary for salvation why is it hidden, was He trying to make it difficult so that only theologians could interpret and understand the scriptures? Jn 17:3

Why is Jesus called, "Emanuel, God with us"? Or was that just a temporary title and the Holy Spirit is now "Emanuel, God with us"?

Why, since Jesus is the only mediator (intercessor) between God and man, can the Holy Spirit also be an intercessor (mediator) between God and man? 1Tim 2:5, see Heb 4-8

Why, are we taught that the Holy Spirit brings us to the Father, when Jesus said, " no man cometh to the Father but by me."? Jn 14:6

Why, when we are made in the image of God, is our spirit our breath, but God's spirit is a separate being?

Why, when after Jesus' resurrection did He breathe the Holy Ghost on His disciples? John 20:22

Why do the scriptures declare that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Jesus? 1Pet 1:10-11; Gal 4:6; 2Cor3:17-18; Rom 8:9; 1Cor 15:45

Why, if the Holy Spirit is a being other than Jesus, must Jesus return to heaven for the disciples to receive the Spirit?

Why does Ellen White in The Great Controversy, say that on the day of Pentecost the disciples thrilled with the very "presence of their ascended Lord"?p351

Why don't the apostolic greetings in the epistles contain the triune formula? Instead they say "Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ." If the Holy Spirit is the third being in a trinity, then, were the apostles blaspheming by their omitting the Holy Spirit? Rom 1:7; 1Cor 1:3; 2Cor 1:2; Gal1:1-3; Eph 1:2, 3; Philp1:2; Col 1:2; 1Thes 1:1; 2Thes1:1, 2; 1Tim 1:2; 2Tim 1:2; Phi 3; Jms 1:1; 2Pet 1:2,

Why didn't the Apostles baptize in the threefold name mentioned in Matt28:19 but always baptized in the name of Christ? Were they apostates and heretics? Acts 2:38; 8:16; 10:43; 19:5; Gal. 3:27; Rom. 6:3; 1 Cor. 1:13-15

Why does the use of "he" and "him" when referring to the Comforter and the Spirit of truth make it to be a person? Then are plants persons also? "And God said; Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind." Gen1:11 "...a fig tree casteth her untimely figs," Rev 6:13. Is the moon also a person? For "...the moon shall not give her light." Matt 24:29

Why is the Holy Spirit referred to as "it"? Rom 8:16; John1:32; Num 11:17, 25. Would we ever refer to Jesus or His Father as "it"?

Why in the New Jerusalem there is no temple and no need of the sun because the glory of God and the Lamb are the light of it? Rev.21:22 Why isn't there a third divine being mentioned in Revelation?

Why, if Ellen White was trying to move the church in 1897 to a trinitarian belief did she not change the wording in The Great Controversy when it was revised in 1907 or in 1911 where she says that "Christ, the only begotten Son was one with the Father and the only being in all the universe that could inter into all the councils of God." GC493

Why did Ellen White reprove John H. Kellogg for using her "trinity" statements when he was defending his belief in the trinity, which led to his teaching of pantheism? Why did she say that he was making her writings say things that she did not mean? Why didn't she say that the trinity was correct? Instead she said we were to hold to the landmarks of our faith, and that not one pillar was to be moved that had been established over the past fifty years.

Why, if as trinitairians say that Jesus is not really the Son of God, does He say that He is? And why does God call Him "My beloved Son" at Jesus baptism and transfiguration? Is Jesus only adopted? Or are they only play acting? Some use Heb11:17 to prove that Jesus isn't the begotten Son of God, when the text doesn't bring into question whether Isaac was begotten but only whether he was the only born son of Abraham, so to apply it to Jn3:16 you would have to say that Jesus was born of God, just not the only one born of God. However if you go back and read the next verse in Heb 11, (and you should have noticed that verse 17 ended with a coma and not a period) it is plain that Isaac is the only begotten of the promise, not that he was the only begotten of Abraham.

Why, does the Old Testament declare that God has a real and begotten son? Ps 2:7; Prov 8:22-36; 30:4

Why, if Jesus wasn't the begotten son of God, does Ellen White say that at His incarnation that He was begotten again?

For 1900 years monogeneses always meant 'only born', until the Revised Standard Bible came out in 1946. In the early 1900s' someone discovered in some obscure Greek writing where monogeneses was used to depict a unique tree that there was no other like, so from this find they have turned scripture an it's head. Any older lexicon or Strong's Concordance will not list unique as a meaning for monogeneses. Mono means one, only, single, alone, sole, or by themselves, and genesis (the name of the first book of the Bible) means to create or procreate, there is no where in scripture that the Greek word genesis is translated to mean anything other than begat, begot, or born. Gen is the root of several English words; generate, generation, genealogy, likewise in Greek ; genea (age, generation, nation, time), genealogeo (to recon by generation, ie, genealogy), genealogia (tracing by generation, ie genealogy), genesia (birthday), genesis (nativity; figuratively- nature, generation), geneto (birth), gennao, (to procreate, figuratively; to regenerate:- bear, beget, be born, bring forth, conceive, be delivered of, gender, make, spring), gennema (offspring, produce, fruit, generation), gennesis (nativity, birth), gennetos (born, they that are born), genos (kin, country-man, diversity, generation, kind, kindred, nation, offspring, stock). That is all the related words in Strong's concordance, and as you can see they all have something to do with birth, therefore it seems absurd to say that monogeneses could mean anything other than that Jesus is the only born son of God.

In the 4th century when the Arians and Trinitarians were battling over whether Christ was created, the meaning of monogeneses was understood by both sides to mean only born, with the Arian's saying that is meant that Jesus must therefore be a created being, and the Trinitarians countered that Christ's being born is an eternal process, that Christ always was, and was always was in the process of birth. "Unique" was not a known interpretation for if it was, it hardly seems that the Catholic Church would have had to invent the doctrine of perpetual or eternal generation.

A note of interest, much of the Church in the Wilderness through the dark ages were not only Sabbath keepers, but also nontrinitairian, ie. Goths, Albegensiens, Waldensies. Most of the Waldenses had surrendered to the Catholic Church at about the time of the Reformation and no longer kept the Sabbath and had become Trinitarian, and when the reformers came to there aid after a massacre, the rest of them surrendered their unique beliefs for the good of the reformation. Likewise the SDA church was nontrinitairian for the first 75 years, until 1931, and Trinitarian for the last 75 years, when LeRoy Froom and others were tired of being considered a cult, and thought that a more unified Christian community would better reach the world.

If our church was wrong on this, the most fundamental and basic doctrine of any religion, who one worships, and our church taught for 75 years what we have now come to believe is the worst of heresies, what qualification did our pioneer church have for giving the 'three angels messages'? How could we give the message to "Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him..." the creator, if we didn't even believe in the true God (trinity)? Would we not be condemned by the very judgment that we preached? How could we call God's chosen out of Babylon if Babylon taught the truth about God, the trinity, and we taught that the trinity was a doctrine of devils? Does it make any sense that God would make this big of a mistake? Is God the author of confusion (Babylon)? If the trinity doctrine is true then we couldn't have given the true "three angel’s messages" until 1931, or 1980 when the trinity was finally voted in as official church doctrine.

So what is the point of all this? It is to restore Christ to His rightful position in our hearts, minds, and in our church. He alone is our high priest, "seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them" (Heb7:25) ""Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace in the time of need."(Heb4:14-16) "That he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ." (Philip1:6) "which is Christ in you the hope of glory" (Col 1:27) That God is the father of our Lord Jesus And that God loved us, (even though we have denied Him) so much that He sent His only begotten Son, flesh of His flesh, spirit of His spirit, that we might live! To teach that Jesus is not truly the Son is antichrist for, "he is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son, Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: he that acknowledeth the Son hath the Father also." 1Jn 1:22, 23
The doctrine of the trinity usurps the position of Jesus and diminishes His role in the plan of salvation and separates Him from the crying soul of the sinner. My prayer is that we all will be "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith." (Heb 12:2)
May the mind of Christ Jesus be in us all! Amen