Q: The Bible does not use the expression “the eternal Son of God.” Does this mean that Jesus was not the “Son” before he came to earth? Is he eternally the Son of God? Or is this a role he assumed in the plan of salvation?
A: This is an interesting question. There are two schools of thought regarding this matter. There are some who believe that the preexistent Christ existed only as the Logos, or Word of God. As a member of the Trinity, he was a distinct Person himself. However, he was not the “Son” of God. The Father/Son relationship within the Godhead only came about through an act of God in time, most likely at the Incarnation. The other position is that two of the three divine Persons in the Trinity exist in an eternal relationship of Father and Son within the Godhead. For all eternity the Father has been the Father, and the Son has been the Son. The real issue is what do the Scriptures say? I believe that the Bible is clear that the Logos has always been the Son of God. Let me explain why I say this. Continue reading →
I am convinced that the doctrine of the Holy Trinity is foundational to all Christian truth. This is a rather bold statement. Indeed, it is rather controversial. There are some Christian teachers who would adamantly disagree with this. They may accept the Trinity as a biblical doctrine, but they argue that acceptance of the Trinity is not essential in order to be a Christian. While I honor their privilege to believe as they do, I must differ with this position most stringently.
I have dealt with this issue in an earlier post. You can read for yourself regarding the question of the necessity of belief in the Trinity. Allow me to summarize my argument for you. First of all, we understand that salvation is experienced in a person’s life by that person repenting of sin, accepting Christ, and coming into a personal relationship with the Lord God. Thus, relationship is at the heart of the Christian experience. In this light, it is important to note the words of Christ in John 17:3, where He declares that eternal life consists of knowing the true God and the true Son of God. In other words, without a relationship with the true God, there is no eternal life. And thus, whether or not God is triune in His nature is necessary for salvation. You cannot have a relationship with a false god and have eternal life. If God is a monarchial, monolithic deity—one God, one Person—then to assert that you have a relationship with a triune God is a false premise. You cannot have eternal life if you have a relationship with a deity that doesn’t exist. Continue reading →
Question: If God is really a Trinity, then why is the word “trinity” not found in the Bible?
Answer: A common argument against the doctrine of the Trinity is that the very word “trinity” is not found in the Bible. This is often used by Jehovah’s Witnesses. Yet they are not alone. You hear this line of reasoning quite often from various sources.
Now we admit that the word “trinity” is not found in the Bible. It is a post-biblical word coined by Christian writers. However, the concept of the Trinity is definitely found in Scripture. In fact, a careful study of both Old and New Testaments reveals a wealth of Bible passages that present the Trinity to us. It is a solidly biblical concept.
Using a term such as “Trinity” for describing the Godhead came about because as the early followers of Christ examined the Scriptures, they were confronted with the reality that God is both One and Three. For centuries they struggled with how to understand this truth. In their attempts to discuss and explain the nature of the Deity, they developed a vocabulary that while not found in the Bible is still firmly rooted in the Sacred Writings. Continue reading →
Beginning in the latter part of the 19th century and the early 20th century a new movement began in the church which would literally impact the world. This was the Pentecostal movement. What first began in scattered and sporadic instances came to national and international attention with the Azusa Street Revival of 1906-1909. Soon the Pentecostal message was being carried around the globe. Continue reading →