Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Holy Trinity in the Bible.

The Holy Trinity in Scripture and History: Volume 1

15 brief explanations of the Triune Nature of God based on Scripture and history.
Sections A-I include 11 Major Truth's  (or points of reference) with over 25 Biblical references.
A-E references the Holy Spirit as Member of the God Head. F-I is about Christ's Deity.
Section J concludes the case with some minor points (#'s 12-15) that examine 4 brief Historical evaluations.
All Bible verses taken from NASB translation (CAPS added for emphasis.) Approximately 7 pages in length.
Compiled and interpreted by Brandon Miller (vessel4thelordjesus)



(Section A: Point # 1)
The Holy Spirit can be grieved and even lied to because He is God, and He is a Person of the Trinity.
References: Ephesians 4:30 & Acts 5:3-4

Ephesians 4:30 "Do not GRIEVE the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption."

 Acts 5:3-4 "But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? 4 While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but TO GOD.” 

- Interpretation: (Point #1) The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal force because He can be grieved and  lied to. One can't grieve and lie to a thing. Rather, these occurrences sound like individuals acting grievous towards another PERSON. Therefore,  Peter explains in Acts 5:4 that if someone lies to the Holy Spirit than they quote, "have not lied to men but to God." Peter's words are my conclusion. The Holy Spirit is God Himself.

(Section B: Point #'s 2-3) 
When referring to the Holy Spirit as both a "He," and the "HELPER;" 
Christ identifies Him as a personal being who exercises abilities and actions.
Reference: John 14:16-17 & 26, and Luke12:12, and Romans 8:15-16; 

John 14:16“I will ask the Father, and He will give you ANOTHER HELPER, that HE may be with you forever; 17that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see HIM or know HIM, but you know HIM because HE abides WITH you and will be IN you.

John 14: 26 “But THE HELPER, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, HE WILL TEACH YOU ALL THINGS, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you."

Luke 12:12 "For THE HOLY SPIRIT WILL TEACH YOU at that time what you should say."

Rom 8:15 "For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, "Abba! Father!" 16THE SPIRIT HIMSELF TESTIFIES with our spirit that we are children of God,"

- Interpretation: (Point #2)  How could the Spirit of Truth be referred to MULTIPLE TIMES as a "HE," unless He IS a Person?

(Point #3) Furthermore, how can He literally "teach" us about Christ, and continually "guide you into all truth" and testify to us, unless He is a personal extension of God Himself? Thus, HE IS MUCH MORE than the just the Power of God, and certainly more than the anti-trinitarian assumption of Him as like. impersonal force. He must be God to TEACH us and GUIDE us and COUNSEL us and EMPOWER us and TESTIFY to our spirits!

(Section C: Point #'s 4-5) 
References: Matthew 28:19-20, Luke 24:49, Acts 1:8, and Eph 2:22

Matthew 28:19-20 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I AM WITH YOU ALWAYS, even to the end of the age."

Luke 24:49 "And behold, I am sending forth THE PROMISE OF MY FATHER UPON YOU; but you are to stay in the city until you are CLOTHED WITH POWER FROM ON HIGH." 

Act 1:8 "but you will receive power when the HOLY SPIRIT HAS COME UPON YOU;"

Eph 22:2 "in whom you also are being built together into A DWELLING OF GOD IN THE SPIRIT."

- Interpretation: (Point #4) Through His Holy Spirit, God powerfully and PERSONALLY comes "upon" us (Acts 1:8). It's not just His Power we receive. It's HIM! The Holy Spirit is the One bringing this power and exercising it in us. He is referred to by Name, being described as the One (individual) responsible for clothing us "with" God's Power. We must remember that He is NOT merely "the Power" itself. Rather, the Divine Power of God in inherent with the manifestation of His Presence among us. For He is the Promise of the Father; also called "the Helper" in the Gospel of John (John 14:16, 26). Jesus is declaring that The Holy Spirit Himself will (personally) descend on us (as He did with Christ at His baptism), clothe us with power from on High (Luke 24:49), and be with us forever (Matt 28:19-20). Jesus is implying that the Spirit of the Father is His OWN Spirit as well. Therefore, having the Spirit of God with us is how Jesus can  also be with us always. Otherwise, how would not have said, "lo, I am with you always, even till the end of the age."(Matt 28:19-20)

(Point #5) How could God dwell "in us by His Spirit" without it being personal? If we are "being built up in a dwelling place by God in His Spirit" (Eph 2:22) than it is clear... He MUST be speaking TO us and living IN us in a very personal and miraculous way. He graciously anoints us with His Power, and than does even more; He creates a secret place in our souls where His Presence is always welcome.  God's Presence rests UPON us with His mighty power similar to how He anointed the prophets and judges in the OlD Testament. With that said, we should also embrace the fullness of this Promise from the Father. For He also lives IN us through a personal expression of Himself, otherwise known as His Holy Spirit: who is  accurately described as a member of the Godhead, the Third Person of the Holy Trinity, and an extension of God Himself. 

(Section D: Point #6) 
"FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT" is very personal miracle.
References: Acts 4:8,31, 9:17, & 13:9, and Eph 5:18

Ephesians 5:18 "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be FILLED WITH THE SPIRIT;" 

Acts 4:8"Then Peter, FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, said to them, “Rulers and elders of the people,"

Acts 4:31 " And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all FILLER WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT, and began to speak the word of God with boldness."

Acts 9:17" So Ananias departed and entered the house, and after laying his hands on him said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road by which you were coming, has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT.”

-Interpretation: (Point #6) Most would agree that God's Power can "rest on" you. But when God also FILLS you with Himself, it is a truly wonderful thing, and very personal. Jesus said you will be "endowed with power from on high" when the "Holy Spirit comes upon you." No one argues this fact. But Christ takes this Promise a to a new depths in the Gospel of John; teaching that His Spirit would also be "in" them.... to teach and guide, and give

(Section E: Point #7) 
References: Mark 12:36  1 Cor 12:3Acts 2:4, & Mark 10:20

"SPEAKING BY THE SPIRIT" in Mark 12:36 and 1 Cor 12:3.


"For it is not you who speak, but it is THE SPIRIT OF YOUR FATHER who speaks IN you,"
 in Mark 10:20.

- Interpretation: (Point #7) If the Spirit gives "utterance" and speaks through us; breathing His own breathe and words into our spirits, than He is must be personal. He is at work in our lives; giving wisdom, and SPEAKING to people the words of the Father. An impersonal force does not make decisions and form sentences. therefore, God's Spirit must be en extension of the Father just as the Son. And if He is the Spirit of Jesus
Part 2: CHRIST

(Section F: Point #8) 
Reference: Revelation 5

Reference: Rev 5:6-14

Rev 5:13 "And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying,
“To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”


Revelation 5:6 And I saw between the throne (with the four living creatures) and the elders a Lamb standing, as if slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God, sent out into all the earth. 7 And He came and took the book out of the right hand of Him who sat on the throne. 8 When He had taken the book, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each one holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. 9 And they *sang a new song, saying,
“Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
10 “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.”
11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice,
“Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”
13 And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying,
“To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”
14 And the four living creatures kept saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped."-

-Interpretation: Worshiping the Lamb IS worshiping God. All the heavenly beings and children of God in Heaven bow and worship Jesus to give Him the glory only due to God ... because HE IS GOD IN THE FLESH.  It explains in verse (13) that "every created thing" gave worship "To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb." Also, in the last verse (14) of this chapter, "And the elders fell down and worshiped." 

(Point #8) There is no other explanation for God encourages worship of the Lamb. Again, look at how they worship God and the Lamb together in verse 13. What else could it mean? It must be that He and the Father  truly are "One" as Jesus declared in John 10:30 & 17:21. God allows this worship in Heaven because it is good and right and appropriate for again, as Hebrews 1:3 says that Christ is the "radiance of the glory of God and the exact representation of His being."

(Section G: Point #9)
 Only God can judge the heart. 
Thus, if Jesus is the "Judge of the Living and the dead" 
who has been given "all authority in Heaven and on earth," 
knows "all things," and is "greater" than all... He must be God.
References: Proverbs16-24, John 2-5, John 10:29-30, Matthew 28:17-191 Peter 4:5 & 2 Tim 4:1.

John 10:30 "My Father, who has given them to Me, is GREATER THAN ALL; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are ONE.”

"All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, But the LORD weighs the motives." Prov 16:2

"Every man's way is right in his own eyes, But the LORD weighs the hearts. Prov 21:1

If you say, "See, we did not know this," Does He not consider it who WEIGHS THE HEARTS? And does He not know it WHO KEEP YOUR SOUL? And will He not render to man according to his work?" Prov 24:12 

John 2:24-25 "But Jesus, on His part, was not entrusting Himself to them, for He knew all men, and because He did not need anyone to testify concerning man, for He Himself KNEW WHAT WAS IN MAN."

John 5:22 "For not even the Father judges anyone, BUT HE HAS GIVEN  ALL JUDGEMENT TO THE SON,"
1 Peter 4:5 "but they will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead."

2 Tim 4:1 "I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, WHO IS THE JUDGE OF THE LIVING AND THE DEAD and by His appearing and His kingdom:"

Matthew 28:17-19 "When they saw Him, THEY WORSHIPED HIM; but some were doubtful. 18And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "ALL AUTHORITY has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT,"

-Interpretation: (Point #9) If the Father shares His GREATNESS and AUTHORITY and POWER and WORSHIP with the Son, as well as His ability to know the hearts of men and judge all things (sharing in His OMNIPOTENCE AND JUDGMENT), then Jesus and the Father's ONE-ness is certainly intertwined with His deity.

(Section H: Point #10)  
Reference: Matthew 28

Matthew 28:17-19 "When they saw Him, THEY WORSHIPED HIM; but some were doubtful. 18And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "ALL AUTHORITY has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT,"

-Interpretation: (Point #10) Also, again in Matthew 28 THEY WORSHIPED HIM (the Resurrected Christ). Therefore, since Christ did not forbid or correct them as He did on many other things, He was in agreement and glorified by their worship. This can only be so if He is to be worshiped. Christ himself had been recorded as quoting  from Deuteronomy, "You shall worship the LORD you God and serve Him only." (Luke 4:8 and Deut 6:13). If Christ affirms that worship is strictly for God alone, than by accepting worship of Himself, He is declaring Himself to be the incarnation of the LORD God of Israel, who made Heaven and Earth.

(Section I: Point #11) 
Reference: John 14:8-10

John 14:8-10 "Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." Jesus said to him, "Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to KNOW ME? HE WHO HAS SEEN ME HAS SEEN THE FATHER; how can you say, 'Show us the Father '?"Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works."

(Point #11) The Lord Jesus is grieved asking in verse 8, "Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to KNOW ME.?" He says that seeing and knowing Him is seeing and knowing the Father. For when Phillip asks Christ to show them "THE FATHER," Jesus declares that they have already have.

Part 3: Historical References

(Section J: Point #12-15) 
Historical reference: Setting the record straight; reenforcing well-established doctrine.

1.The Council of Nicaea in A.d. 325 and the development of the Nicene Creed to resolve disputes over the Deity of Christ and establish a consensus of doctrine for the universal Church.

-Interpretation: Some anti-Trinitarians reference the First Council of Nicaea in A.D. 325 because the Roman Emperor Constantine who legalized and enforced Christianity was involved in planning this event (even though the current pope, Sylvester the First, who was more like a highly respected bishop than a political figure, did not attend). Thus, some who hate catholics see this like a conspiracy because of the establishment of many other catholic type structures and liturgy. However, as they discussed the deity of Christ, the Council of Nicaea determined that non-Trinitarian teachings were heretical. The Deity of Christ was also a major subject once again at the later Councils of Ephesus (A.D. 431) and Chalcedon (A.D. 451). So, the deity of Christ was a long discussion not limited to romans catholics and popes.

(Point #12) Conclusion: We cannot dismiss such a blessed doctrine to the minds of a few mere bishops in the 2nd century. The Trinity doctrine is not going away because the majority of believers in Christ across the world see God this way. Whether catholics, protestants, independents, and most in-between; it is evident that God Himself has kept this doctrine alive in how He reveals Himself to His people, even when they disagree on so many other issues.

2.The First Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381 and revision of the Nicene Creed to specifically mention of the Holy Spirit of God as a member of the GodHead (clarifying Trinitarian doctrine).

-Interpretation: It believed that sometime between the Council of Nicaea and the later Council of Constantinople, that the current version of the Nicene Creed was developed before it's revision in A.D. 381 during the time of Constantine's Son. Just because the this council added more details about the Holy Spirit being God does not mean that it wasn't already an established belief. A doctrine can be practiced and believed without the official backing from a state religion or the organized church of its day.  Maybe it wasn't spelled out in such intricate detail and a theology as the case in these official church documents and proceedings, but it was obviously on the minds of the people long before any of these councils. And it is still a topic that some hold controversial even today. Also, whether or not anyone before them used the phrase "Trinity" does NOT exclude the belief  and theology of a Triune God from having a history of its own. Believing that the Holy Spirit is God Himself does not require one to use the term, "Trinity." Likewise, the belief that God the Father shares His deity with both His Son (Jesus) and His Holy Spirit, may be practiced without the to be label of "the doctrine of the Trinity."

 (Point #13) Thus, Scripture points to both the Holy Spirit and Jesus as God (see Points #1-10), but some interpret this according to their own philosophies which are similar to the same quarrels over doctrine seen in early church history between differing sects and groups.  The naming and endorsement of a  doctrine by a state religion is NOT the same as "inventing" it.

3.The great Schism (or split)  between Eastern Orthodox and (west) Roman Catholics in the 11th century over matters such as the "Filioque;" how to describe whether the Holy Spirit proceeds first from the Father or from both the Father and the Son in origin.

-Interpretation: The Orthodox church existed before the roman catholics. When these two groups split during "the great schism" over how to word the theology of the Trinity, neither side retracted the doctrine as a whole, and strictly disagreed on the details of it's theology. Thus, the roman catholic church did NOT invent this doctrine. Rather, they inherited it, and would later word it differently than the eastern orthodox. Just to be clear. Their bishops fought over the details of this doctrine and how to describe the mystery of it, but they weren't the first to believe in doctrine of the Holy Trinity.  

(Point #14) This doctrine should never be dismissed, even if groups disagree on how the Trinity functions,  their disagreements do not negate the doctrine itself.

4. The term "one catholic church" means "one universal church:" eastern orthodox as well as roman catholics, and many other denominations (lutherans and episcopalians) still endorse this phrase.

-Interpretation: If someone criticizes the "catholic" church, they should realize that the term "catholic" is not solely associated with the "roman" catholic church. The eastern orthodox and other denominations still teach it and consider themselves part of the "universal Church" being that it was part of the Nicene Creed which predates the schism. Therefore, we see yet another loophole that should deter people from thinking that the "roman" version (or western version) of catholic ideology was somehow responsible for all the modern doctrines shared by mainline Christians today. 

*Regardless of all the criticism and condemnation of many roman catholic teachings and practices by both Martin Luther in 1517 A.D.  (i.e.- protesting the sale of indulgences, and the corruption and favoritism among the clergy and Popes of his day), and many modern protestants distance themselves from Roman Catholicism (seeing prayers to Mary and the infallibility of the Papacy as strictly "Catholic practices"), we see that the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity is one of the only remaining doctrines from Roman Catholicism still upheld by mainline protestants (along with a shorter version of the Nicene Creed such as The Apostles Creed).

(Point #15:) Conclusion: The Doctrine of The Holy Trinity is not merely a matter of one or two denominations, and certainly not an invention by the "roman catholic church," especially when even the term of "one holy catholic Church" is not solely attributed to one particular group.