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Bible Studies: Father, Son, & Holy Ghost

These studies examine the scriptures for a comprehensive understanding of the relationship between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. I do not look to the commentaries of men for my understanding, but to the Bible itself, as my desire is that we all walk righteously before God, not according to traditions of men.  Bernie Parsons

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The Father, The Son & The Holy Ghost

Copyright © 1998 by Bernie Parsons

Minor Revisions 09/06/03 & 04-20-2006

Substantial Revisions 03-14-2012

Many subjects that fire the imagination tend to fascinate Bible students. It seems to be within man to wonder about those things that he cannot see with his eyes, touch with his hands or hear with his ears. Not only do we humans wonder, we often tend to wander: we stray off the beaten path of Bible information into the world of the imagination.

This is not good.

Genesis 6:5: "And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually."

Romans 10:3: "For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God."

Matthew 15:9: "But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."

When we study the scriptures, it is vital that we try to understand them as God would have us understand them. We must be careful not to misrepresent the word of God by substituting man's reasoning for the declared truth of His word. The Apostle Paul gave good advice to the young preacher, Timothy, when he wrote the following in 2 Timothy 2:15: "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."

One area that is often incorrectly taught is often referred to as the "Godhead", or the "Trinity". Some teach that God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit (Ghost) are components of the same entity in three different manifestations, or personifications. This doctrine was legitimized by the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, and adopted by the Roman Catholic Church. Others say that Jesus was the Creator/Father, then came to live and die on the earth as Jesus, the Son; to return later as the Holy Spirit. Others sometimes refer to people who teach this doctrine as "Jesus only" believers.

Is this what the Bible teaches? Not at all! The Bible clearly tells us that the three are separate and distinct. God is head of all, being Almighty. Jesus is His obedient Son, who came in righteousness to carry out the will of His Father, and bring us the words of God. Jesus is head of the body of Christ--His called-out. God's Holy Ghost, or Holy Spirit, was sent as a witness to the life and teachings of Jesus, to comfort, teach, and guide.

Though some argue as to the exact meaning of the original Hebrew words in the first few chapters of Genesis, it is clear to me that taken in context, this is where we find our first mention of the facts.

Genesis 1:26: "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth."

Genesis 11:5-8: "And the LORD came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded. And the LORD said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech. So the LORD scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city."

The scriptures indicate a plurality of entities in heaven, though many argue that the original Hebrew used the plural sense merely to indicate a powerful God, not several beings. However, the New Testament teachings plainly indicate that a plurality of entities was present.

Jesus, the Son of God, was not only present at, but also participated in, the creation of our earth and the human race.

Romans 1:19-21: "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened."

John 1:1: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made."

Ephesians 3:8-9: "Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ; And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:"

Colossians 1:12-19: "Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;"

As these scriptures indicate, Christ was with God (His Father) in the beginning, and assisted in the creation. Jesus Himself testified that He existed before Abraham did.

John 8:56: "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad."

John 8:58: "Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am."

That the presence of Jesus was felt throughout the history of mankind was of no doubt to Paul, the Apostle. He wrote in:

I Corinthians 10:1-4: "Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ."

The very language of the New Testament indicates that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost are separate and distinct. They are not the same individual. With open-minded study, one can easily see the references to, as well as the roles of, each one.

For instance, Jesus speaks of having been with the Father, and of going to the Father: not having been the Father, or going to be the Father!

The ancient Jews believed in one God!

Deuteronomy 6:4-5  "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might."

Jesus reiterated this doctrine:

Mark 12:28-34 "And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? 

"And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

"And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

"And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he: And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

"And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question."

Paul, an Apostle of Jesus, confirmed this teaching, as well:

1 Corinthians 8:4-6 "As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one.

"For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,) But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him."

Galatians 3:19-20 " Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one."

The writer of Hebrews affirms that Jesus is our mediator, and as Paul had pointed out, there is no need for a mediator of one party.

Hebrews 12:22-24 "But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,

"And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel."

1 Timothy 2:5-6 "For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;  Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time."

Jesus is not a mediator between man and Himself, but between man and God, the Father.

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Jesus, The Son

Jesus, the Son of God. Jesus, the Christ. The sacrificial Lamb of God. The Word made flesh.

Revelation 5: 5-9: "And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. And he came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne. And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;"

The angel Gabriel proclaimed that Jesus is the Son of God.

Luke 1:26-35: "And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God."

Satan knew that Jesus is the Son of God. Matthew 4: 3: "And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread."

Matthew 4:5-6: "Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone."

Evil spirits recognized Jesus as the Son of God.

Matthew 8: 28-29: "And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way. And, behold, they cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time?"

Mark 3:11: "And unclean spirits, when they saw him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God."

The apostles knew He is the Son of God.

John 1:34: "And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God."

Acts 9:20: "And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God."

John 3:18: "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."

2 Corinthians 1:19: "For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, even by me and Silvanus and Timotheus, was not yea and nay, but in him was yea"

Hebrews 4:14: "Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession."

John 20: 30-31: "And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name."

Jesus declared Himself to be the Son of God.

John 10:36: "Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?"

God declared that Jesus is His son.

Matthew 3:16-17: "And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

Matthew 17: 5: "While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him."

2 Peter 1:17: "For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."

With evidence and testimony from both heaven and earth, why is it so difficult for people to believe that Jesus is the Son of God, not the Father Himself? I know all things are possible with God, but did God father Himself, and become His own son? What would be the point? If so, why did His voice come from heaven to witness of Jesus as His Son? Did Jesus use ventriloquism to dupe the people?

What would folks have us believe? What does the Bible say?

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Jesus is the Word of God come in the flesh.

John 1:1-4: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men."

1 John 1: 1-3: "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ."

Jesus came to bring the light of God’s truth to a world lost in the darkness of sin and ignorance. In this sense, He was the Word made -- come in -- the flesh. He was deity, or God, yet was with God. So, though He were God, He was not the Father, but with the Father.

Matthew 4:12-17: "Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee; And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim: That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."

His words were the words of God, His Father. They were not His own. He and the Father are one  in the sense that they agree in purpose. Jesus is the faithful, obedient son of God.

John 5:30: "I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me."

John 7:16-18: "Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me. If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. He that speaketh of himself seeketh his own glory: but he that seeketh his glory that sent him, the same is true, and no unrighteousness is in him."

John 14:24: "He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me."

If Jesus and the Father were one and the same, how could He deny that the word was His, saying instead that it was the Fatherís? And why does He keep saying the Father sent Him? If they were one and the same, He would be sending Himself! He said the doctrine was not His, but that of Him who had sent Him.

John 15:15: "Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you."

Jesus has His throne at the right hand of God.

Matthew 22:44: "The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool?"

Matthew 26:64: "Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven."

Mark 16:19: "So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God."

Acts 7:55: "But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,"

Romans 8:34: "Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."

Colossians 3:1: "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God."

Hebrews 12:2: "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God."

If these two are the same individual, how can Jesus sit at His own right hand? And why is it necessary for Him to intercede with Himself?

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God, The Father

God, the Creator. God, the Father. The Ancient of Days.

Daniel 7:9: "I beheld till the thrones were cast down, and the Ancient of days did sit, whose garment was white as snow, and the hair of his head like the pure wool: his throne was like the fiery flame, and his wheels as burning fire."

Dan iel 7:13: "I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him."

Daniel 7:22: "Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom."

Revelation 4:10-11: "The four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. "

Revelation 5:13-14: "And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. And the four beasts said, Amen. And the four and twenty elders fell down and worshipped him that liveth for ever and ever."

Jesus knew His Father was still in heaven, though He (Jesus) was on the earth, living in the flesh. He spoke to His heavenly Father often. We know Jesus was not mumbling to Himself when He prayed. He also freely talked about His relationship with His Father in heaven.

Matthew 10:32-33: "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."

If Jesus and the Father were the same individual, how could He then come before Himself to confess or deny men? And why would this be necessary? He would already know!

Matthew 25-26: "At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight."

Was Jesus here thanking Himself, or praising Himself? No! He spoke to the Father as to another distinct entity.

Matthew 12:50: "For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother."

Matthew 16:17: "And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven."

Matthew 18:10: "Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven."

In the above passages, Jesus is on earth, but refers to His father in heaven.

When Jesus was praying in the garden of Gethsemane, to whom was He praying? To Himself?

Matthew 26:39: "And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."

We also see Jesus speaking of two wills, or desires, at this point. His own, which was to avoid the crucifixion if possible, and His Father’s will! Although the Father and the Son agreed in purpose, Jesus dreaded that which He was about to endure. As He died upon the cross, He was well aware of His relationship with His heavenly Father!

Matthew 26:53: "Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?"

Matthew 27:46: "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"

Luke 23:46: "And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost."

John 20:17: "Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God."

I find it difficult to accept that anyone who truly studies the Bible, and accepts it as the word of God, can misunderstand that Jesus is the Son, and God is His Father. Furthermore, how can one mistake them for one and the same whenever they speak to, and of, one another?

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The Holy Ghost (Spirit)

Is the Holy Spirit a third entity? Is He Jesus returned to us in a different form, as some imagine? Or, is it the spiritual essence of God, that is able to dwell both in Him and in us, simultaneously? The scriptures, as usual, have the answer. We need to rightly divide the scriptures to get that answer.

John 1: 29-32: "The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me. And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him."

When Jesus was baptized of John, the Spirit was seen descending upon Him in the likeness of a dove. If He were the Spirit, how could He then descend upon Himself? Or why would that be necessary?

Jesus also spoke of blasphemy against the Holy Ghost as being worse than blasphemy against Himself. If they were one and the same, there would only be one blasphemy! Yet, He said blasphemy against Himself would be forgiven, while blasphemy against the Holy Ghost would not be forgiven!

Matthew 12:32: "And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come"

John 14:16-18: "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you."

Jesus says here that He will pray to the Father, who shall give another Comforter! All three are mentioned in the same sentence: Jesus praying to the Father for another Comforter, besides Himself.

John 16:7: "Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you."

Jesus said it was necessary for Him to go away in order for Him to send the Comforter (Holy Ghost). He said not that He would return as the Holy Ghost, but rather that He would send the Holy Ghost..

John 15:26: "But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:"

Again, Jesus speaks of the three as distinct. Jesus would send the Comforter from the Father, and the Comforter (Holy Spirit) would testify of Jesus.

To use an illustration from our government, which may help the Bible student to understand this, it would be similar to an ambassador telling members of a foreign government that he will contact the President, and have him send the Secretary of State to discuss a matter. They are three members of the same government working together with one agenda, one purpose: yet they are three different individuals, with differing roles!

Or, in a country where a king rules, perhaps the king’s son, a prince, would advise those of a foreign country that he will contact his father, the king, to have him send an emissary to further discuss a matter. Again, three different people with one purpose, working together.

John 14:26: "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."

The words that Jesus spoke were those of the Father: the Holy Spirit was sent to remind the disciples of the Father’s word, which Jesus had taught while here on the earth.

Romans 8: 26-27: "Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God."

As we saw regarding Jesus' intercession for us, we see the same about the Holy Spirit. If the Holy Spirit is just the one God in another manifestation, how is He to make intercession to God for us? There would be no need, as He is already aware of our needs and prayers, and His own will. Intercession would then be unnecessary.

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Atonement: The Father, The Son, & The Holy Ghost

The doctrine that the three are actually one came from early departures from the truth of God's word, and were absorbed into the historical roots of the Roman Catholic Church.

Jesus charged His disciples with the following instruction before He ascended back to His heavenly Father:

Matthew 28:16-20: "Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted. And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen."

If Jesus alone were God, why did He not merely say, "In my name"? It is because the three are distinctly different! We have already proven that truth by the very words of Jesus Himself! If we do not take all the scriptures together, we can easily be misled into a misunderstanding of them.

The confusion arises because many have not thoroughly studied the scriptures for themselves. Instead, they rely upon traditional interpretations that are incorrect. The Bible teaches us that God, the Creator/Father; Jesus, His only Son begotten of woman; and the Holy Spirit/Comforter all work together, with one purpose.

In the Bible, this is referred to as being "at one". Jesus died as our sacrificial lamb to bring us into a state of atonement, or "at-one-ment"!

Romans 5:11: "And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement."

Ephesians 2: 16-18: "And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father."

Again, we see how the three work together as one. In fact, we are told in:

Ephesians 4:4-6: "There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all."

1Corinthians 8:6: "But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him."

All things are of God (the Father), but by Jesus, the Son. They work together. This makes them one. In a similar manner, husband and wife, though two different individuals, become one! Matthew 19:5-6: "And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder."

God laid out the plan. His obedient Son, Jesus, agreed to live among men to carry out the plan. The Holy Ghost was sent to witness that the plan truly was God's will, that Jesus had spoken the truth.

Jesus describes this sameness of purpose, or oneness, in:

John 10:29-30: "My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. I and my Father are one.

John 17:19-23: "And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me."

Not only are Jesus and God, the Father, one--so are we Christians! One with each other, and one with Jesus, and God! We are ll one with each other. This is the purpose of the "at-one-ment" -- atonement -- to make us all one. Jesus said that we are sanctified, and become one with Him and the Father.

Romans 12:5: "So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another."

Yet, we are distinct and separate beings, individual entities!

1 Corinthians 12:12: "For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ."

The "church" or ekklesia, the called-out,  is the body of Christ.

Ephesians 5:23: "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body."

Colossians 1:18: "And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence."

Colossians 1:24: "Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body's sake, which is the church:"

It is one body, comprised of many members, like the human body contains many organs. We are one because we work together with one mind, one purpose: the health and growth of the body.

Romans 15:6: "That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."

2 Corinthians 13:11: "Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you."

Philippians 1:27: "Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;"

Philippians 2:2: "Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind."

I Peter 3:8: "Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:"

I Corinthians 1:10: "Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment."

I John 5:7: "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."

I sincerely hope that you now understand the oneness of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost! Three working together for one purpose! And, as Christians, we align ourselves with them, making us all one, together!

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Why Is This Subject Incorrectly Taught?

Like many of our doctrines, the erroneous doctrine of the "Trinity" was consolidated within the teachings of the Roman Catholic church. The doctrine was then carried forward by Protestant Catholics, and was accepted by their offshoots. Yet, the Catholics themselves acknowledge that the word Trinity does not appear in the scriptures. Like other words that don't appear in scriptures, this doctrine has its origins, not with scripture, as some suppose, but with man.

Here is how the Roman Catholics admit this fact (http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/15047a.htm):

"In Scripture there is as yet no single term by which the Three Divine Persons are denoted together. The word trias (of which the Latin trinitas is a translation) is first found in Theophilus of Antioch about A.D. 180. He speaks of "the Trinity of God [the Father], His Word and His Wisdom ("Ad. Autol.", II, 15)."

"The first creed in which it appears is that of Origen's pupil, Gregory Thaumaturgus. In his Ekthesis tes pisteos composed between 260 and 270, he writes:

There is therefore nothing created, nothing subject to another in the Trinity: nor is there anything that has been added as though it once had not existed, but had entered afterwards: therefore the Father has never been without the Son, nor the Son without the Spirit: and this same Trinity is immutable and unalterable forever (P. G., X, 986)."

This is a manufactured doctrine, and must be rejected as such!

Jesus told Satan in:

Matthew 4: 4: "But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."

Some, no doubt, misstate the subject simply because they have not sufficiently studied the scriptures. They unquestioningly accept traditional doctrine as it has been handed down. Others probably adopt the teaching from their parents, or a favorite preacher or Bible teacher. However, ignorance of God’s will and word is not an acceptable excuse to God.

The Apostle Paul rebuked worshippers of false gods for their ignorance in:

Acts 17:30: "And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:"

1 Peter 1:14: "As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:"

Romans 10: 1-3: "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God."

Matthew 15:8-9: "This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me. But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."

1 Timothy 2: 3-4: "For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth."

What is sad is that there are also religious people who deliberately misrepresent the scriptures for their own personal financial benefit, or for personal power or glory. Jesus, and His apostles, warned about these people.

Matthew 7:15: "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves."

Acts 20:29: "For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock."

1 Peter 5:2-3: "Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock."

Peter warned church leaders not to fall into these two snares: leading for financial gain, or to "lord it" over the flock! Many who lead others into false worship do so for one of these two reasons.

1 Timothy 6:3-10: "If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself. But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."

Jude 1:10-11: "But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves. Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core."

Titus 1:10:-16 "For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision: Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake. One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies. This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith; Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth. Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled. They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate."

2 Timothy 3: 4-7: "Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth."

Don’t accept teaching simply because it is all you have ever heard, or is presented by someone you really like. Study the scriptures, meditate upon them, and pray to God for knowledge and wisdom. Then accept what God’s word teaches, not what man teaches.

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I hope that this study has helped you to better understand God's truth. There are more online articles on interesting and important Bible subjects on Christian Universe.

Copyright © 1999 By Bernie Parsons

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