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By Edward O’Hara…
There is a huge difference between these two. One that could mean the difference between knowing God or remaining ignorant of Him. By His remaining as much a mystery to you as He ever was before you believed in His existence.
Some think the only thing trinitarianism teaches is that God is 3 in 1. But, there is much more to this doctrine than that. It’s focus on God’s oneness creates for them a god of their own making. A 3 headed monster of sorts. A god who is one being and one in essence because of it’s false conclusion that oneness is ontological with 3 personalities, rather than the 3 being 1 because God IS love as the scriptures plainly teach.
For them God being the 3 in 1 is a mystery that can not be known. But, it most certainly can be. If we will believe what the scriptures plainly say. And because eternal life is knowing Him, knowing that God is 3 in 1 because God is love is imperative for salvation. Because love, God’s love, is the glue that joins the Godhead and His family together and makes them one. Not essence or being.
In this part 4 of these messages where we are understanding the importance of knowing that God IS love I will show you just how important this distinction is. Because I have realized that what might seem to many to be an unrelated issue is actually quite relevant. The issue of what makes God one that can only be answered when we know God for who the scripture tell us He truly is. When we know that God IS love.
I have long understood that at it’s most fundamental level the trinitarian doctrine actually works to shut us up unto the faith. Because if we don’t believe what makes God one, how can we believe what makes us one with Him and each other? John says “He that loveth not knoweth not God for God is love”. So knowing that God is love, and that His love is what makes Him one and us one with Him and each another, is crucial for salvation.
The trinitarian doctrine distracts us from the love that makes God one by putting our focus on beingness or essence. Which only matters when we bring Greek philosophy into our interpretations of scripture. But, in doing so we will find ourselves being distracted from our first love as the church at Ephesus in Rev.2:5 was. To whom Jesus said if they don’t return to their first love, even though they were doing everything else right, their candlestick would be removed. Serious repercussions, right?
If our understanding of this becomes our reasoning regarding who God is based on the trinitarianism view it can keep us from ever really knowing God. Because by saying that He is one because He is one ontologically, His being or essence, who God really is will remain for us a mystery. Something the trinitarian admits to thinking about God. Because then our focus is on trying to know how a being who is one ontologically can be 3 persons. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Instead of knowing Him as love.
People come up with all sorts of creative, albeit unBiblical, ways to help explain their understanding of what makes God one. Even making silly comparisons between God and water. Saying this because water can also assume 3 different states. But, these creative ways to define their view of God’s oneness only becomes necessary for them because they have rejected the plain language of the scriptures that says God is one in love because He is love. Making them venture into all sorts of unBiblical territory trying to discover what and who God is. Being deceived and believing the “wisdom” of the Greeks. Rather than the gospel once preached to the saints. Who Paul says constantly “seek for wisdom” rather than the love of God.
They admit it themselves that they can never understand the Godhead because of this. And in doing so they admit they do not know Him. To them He remains as mysterious as any unknown quantity can be. A mystery because to the trinitarian the Godhead being one is not because of love as the Bible clearly teaches. A love that all men can relate to from toddlerhood. But, instead they believe it is because the Godhead shares the same substance. Something that no man can relate to and is nowhere found in the scriptures. The Greeks in Corinth even had a statue made to this “unknown god”. Very impersonal don’t you think? Yet our relationship with God is to be very personal. So much so that Jesus said knowing Him is eternal life.
But, satan does not want us to know the true God. He wants us to remain ignorant of
God’s love and the fact that His love is a reflection of Himself. Because He is love. And is one because of love. This is why Jesus said “If you’ve seen me you’ve seen the Father”.
It works to Satan’s advantage that people focus on beingness instead of His love. Because when we focus on His love our focus is directly on our relationship and fellowship with God. And His salvation and purposes in His dealings with mankind since Adam was in the garden.
There are no scriptures that say or imply that God is one ontologically or in essence. So they only assume this is what this means. They get there by pouring meaning into scriptures that isn’t there. Meaning that is the result of some very bad theology. So that when God says there is none like me, to them it means there are none that are of the same essence as God. They completely miss the fact that God is one because God is love. And all that He does is because of love.
Ask yourself this question. When God says there are none like me in Isaiah45 does this mean that those false gods who would have us believe they are God can not show similar power and other characteristics? No. We see accounts of them in the Bible doing some pretty amazing things.
For example, do you remember when Pharoah was being told by Moses to let God’s people go? And Pharoah’s magicians made their sticks turn into snakes like God had done with Moses’ stick? If you haven’t read that story you should because it’s pretty amazing. It is found in Exodus7. They showed that with their sorceries they could perform similar acts to God’s. Their sorceries were not as powerful as God’s love however. Shown when the snake God made swallowed up the snakes Pharaoh’s sorcerers had conjured up. But, they still showed a kind of miraculous power similar to God’s. So this was not what God meant when He said there is none like me, is it? So if it is not His power that makes the Godhead unlike all other gods, what is it? Hmmm.
There are a couple of things that make the Godhead different from all the false gods. And these are that He alone is Creator. And He alone is love. No false god can truthfully claim the mantle of Creator. And no false god makes itself known by unconditional love. But, being both Creator and love work in a beautiful and synergistic way in the true God. Because the reason He created is because He is love. Because what God has created was and is for relationship and for fellowship with Him. He wants to know us. And He wants us to be able know Him in the same way He knows us. In love.
This is why Jesus said in John17:3 knowing the Godhead is eternal life. This is why when Jesus was praying to the Father in John17:21-23 He thanked Him that He “hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.” Making us one with them in the same way that makes Jesus one with the Father. By loving us the same way that Jesus said the Father loves Him. So that by His love “shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit” as Paul taught in Rom.5:1-5 God has given us the ability to love Him and one another with the same love that makes the Godhead one. That through that love we would be one with Him and with each other.
So as I also said in parts 1-3 of this message it is because God IS love that the Godhead IS one. And the belief that substance or beingness or being of the same essence or whatever they choose to call it is not a belief that originates from anything the scriptures teach. That hypothesis comes from the wisdom of the men. The wisdom of the Greeks. A philosophy that has forced God into their mysterious oneness box that says because God is perfect He can be only one being. Because to them perfection only exists if there is only one. But, these ideas are of man’s making and are not found in the teachings of the Bible. Because the Bible teaches that there are 3 that are the Godhead. Not 1 or 2. And not 3 Gods, but 3 that are the Godhead. Unified by love, not “beingness” or “essence”.
This means that not only must the trinitarian view be rejected. But, the fact that it is love that makes the Godhead one is something that must be embraced by all who trust in Him. Because as John so succinctly put it, God IS love. And only when we know His love can we know Him. It’s love that Jesus said in John17:21-23 makes us one with God and each other.
This also shines truth on the reason Jesus told the church at Ephesus they must return to their first love or their candlestick would be removed. Because the love that brought them to God, even though Jesus had told them they were doing everything else right, is ultimately all that matters when it comes to being part of a family. The family of God.
God is holy, separate from all things that have been made, not because His essence is different from ours. But, because He is Creator and we are creation. In all of eternity this will never change. But, what makes the Godhead one is the same thing that makes us one with Him and each other. And that is love.
And not just any kind of love. But, the kind of love that unconditionally brought one member of the Godhead to become a man. The love that John said God IS. So that as a man God could show us what it means to love as He does so that we can know Him. And that it was because of this love that He joined with man in our death. And how His love delivered all mankind to the uttermost from mortality to immortality by His resurrection when they come to know Him. From being subject to the power of death to the liberty that is in Christ Jesus and eternal life. Because when we trust in Him the Holy Spirit births in us a spirit we never had before. So that we are no longer only natural men. But, spiritual. And as spiritual we are children of God and heirs to God’s kingdom.
Would you like to know God’s love for you? Will you trust Him for eternal life that Jesus came to provide for you? If you would then pray with me now.
Dear Jesus, I confess you are Lord. And I believe you have raised from the dead. Thank you for loving me so much that you joined with me in my death. So that by your resurrection you conquered death for me. So that I could join with you in eternal life. Thank you for giving me a spirit to live in your kingdom forever. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
If you prayed with me then welcome to God’s family. Now as you read the Bible believe what it plainly says. And trust the Holy Spirit to lead you into all His truth. He absolutely will. You know why? Because God is love.
See you there or in the air!
This message can also be heard at: rumble
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