Before You Give Your Heart Away
Beloved. I am your friend and fellow believer in Jesus Christ. We both believe He was born of a virgin and suffered and died a cruel death on the cross for our sake. We both believe he rose from the dead on the third day and now sits at the right hand of God. He is our Savior and Shepherd and High Priest. He is the only begotten Son of God! We both cherish and share these beliefs but there is something else to consider too. Before you give your heart and mind to the Trinity let’s talk it over. This is such a big decision that it only makes sense to consider it carefully. You know… understand your options, study, pray, and ask God for insight. Sleep on it.
Is the Trinity a Sacred Cow?
Please forgive me for saying it out loud but we have a sacred cow in our midst, and it’s about time we all took a close look at it. Yes, dear one, I’m talking about the Trinity. We all know there are some things we should never question or even think about, but let’s go ahead and do it anyway. This will take some bravery on your part but don’t worry! You are totally free to reject everything you are about to read. I just want to share a few thoughts with you without any pressure, coercion or manipulation at all.
Is Trinitarian Dogma Old Wine?
Most of us have spent much, if not all of our lives, believing that the only legitimate, safe and orthodox teaching about God and Jesus is the Trinitarian Hypothesis. I have some very good news for you though. There is a Biblically harmonious, comprehensible and straightforward conception of God and Christ that you should at least learn about. You may be totally satisfied with the old wine of incomprehensible Trinitarian dogma, but perhaps not. Regardless, you owe it to yourself to at least see if there is a better alternative. Something much more ancient than the Trinitarian monopoly that holds sway over the Body of Christ. Let’s take a look at what most “primitive Christians” believed long before the “church fathers” did their work and wrote their creeds. Before they assembled under the dubious auspices of a Roman emperor named Constantine there was a simplicity of faith that even unlearned and illiterate believers understood and loved. Many of them died for it.
Did the Church Fathers Imagine the Trinity?
Jesus spoke about those “who have eyes to see but see not.” On the other hand, there are also those who claim to see so well that they can see things that are not even written on the pages of the Bible. When we were children, we looked up at the clouds and tried to imagine what each one looked like. “See! That one looks like a fish and the one next to it looks like a bird!” It was innocent fun to point out to others what we could see in our own imaginations. Best of all was when your companions finally saw what you had seen! It was just harmless child’s play and it was great fun. Can you imagine sentencing people to death who could not see what you saw? Would you want to kill them? Does that sound even remotely Christian, or is it a profoundly evil impulse? That’s what happened though when the great church councils created creeds that were binding on all believers. Paraphrasing now, “So, you want to be saved? You better see things our way… or else!”
Belief in the Trinity Was Life and Death
The Roman Empire (the same empire that crucified Jesus) suddenly began to enforce newly written creeds with violence! Accepting or rejecting the Trinity became a life and death decision. What would any sensible person do? The overwhelming response eventually became, “Well of course I see what you’re describing! It’s perfectly clear!” Many said, “If our religious authorities claim to see that God is a trinity of three persons then I see it too!” The threat of banishment or death had a powerful effect on how well believers said could see the new God of three persons! But, did they really see? There were many who paid an awful price to maintain their integrity. I’ve looked long and hard at the pages of the Bible and I can’t see three divine persons at all. All I can see in scripture is One God and His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ. My heart is at peace with this and my mind is satisfied too. Now… what about you? What do you see?
PS: Yes… these are radical thoughts aren’t they? Then again, Jesus was pretty radical Himself. Imagine that! Now, shake up your friends! Encourage them to think about these things too. Share a link to wonderfultheology.com with someone today. You’ll be doing them a favor. God Bless.
Copyright 2022 by Bob Shutes