Rodney L. Smith
Is God three separate persons that together somehow equal one God? This is what the Doctrine of the Trinity suggests, but I do not subscribe to the Catholic teaching of the so-called “Holy Trinity.” I subscribe to Oneness Theology, which is truly biblical. The only separation which occurred was when God became a Man and stayed God simultaneously. This caused confusion among those without understanding and the Trinity Doctrine as we know it today was formulated by Roman and Greek philosophers (among others) over hundreds of years. Church History and Systematic Theology classes confirm this. It is extra-biblical revelation that does not agree with what God and His scriptures had previously declared for thousands of years. The holy Spirit (lit. “Breath of the Holy”) never meant anything other than the one and only God to the original hearers and users of the term. It did not mean a separate personality or unique being within God’s substance; to believe that is poor exegesis. The most important fact proclaimed throughout the entire Bible is that God is one (cf. Deut. 6:4). One can mean collective, as in English, but the basic definition is singular (cf. Isaiah 44:8,24 & 45:6).
That God became a Man is the “mystery of godliness” (1 Tim 3:16) not that God is actually three separate persons and nobody really ever knew about it prior to the incarnation. Jesus was not some individual person existing within God who came down and was born as a Man. Jesus is God manifested in the flesh (John 1:1-5, 14 & 1 Tim 3:16). He was conceived by the Spirit of God (holy Spirit) and was therefore called the “Son of God” (Luke 1:35). He was filled with the Holy Spirit yet said that it was the Father who was in Him and working through Him (Luke 4:1; John 14:10). The Father is the Spirit. Jesus said that the Father would sent the Spirit in His name (John 14:26) and then that He would sent the Spirit from the Father after He departed from them (John 15:26 & 16:7). Who then sent the holy Spirit? From the beginning of the Gospel we are taught that Jesus is He we baptizes with (sends) the Holy Spirit (John 1:33). Therefore, Jesus is the Father, the only God manifested in the flesh, in the person, one Person for “in Him [Jesus] dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Colossians 2:8-9). The Spirit sent is His omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45 & 2 Cor. 3:17). The holy Spirit is Jesus, the Son of God, in our hearts. That explains why Paul used the terms ‘the Spirit, holy Spirit, Spirit of Christ, Spirit of the Lord, Spirit of God, and Spirit of His Son’ interchangeably. Remember that it was the holy Spirit who came down when Jesus was conceived (Luke 1:35), and Mary was with child of the holy Spirit (Matt 1:18). Therefore, the Spirit is both Jesus Himself who came down from heaven and the Father of Jesus who caused the conception within Mary’s womb.
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