Alleged Sources for the Incarnation, part 16.
Updated: Aug 30, 2022
I think I am wrapping up my short synopses of John’s Christological “data points” which fundamentally contain his view of the status and authority of Jesus Christ. Returning again to the very first two points Samuel Barrett makes of John’s writings…yes, these two points should be covered again, since they are so…primal and true.
The first point is the total gloss of the Athanasian Creed, in which Two or Three GODS are denied, but not saying HOW the concept and delusion of a God with more than one will, soul, mind and consciousness can exist. What ends up happening, is the inevitable conclusion of two or three Gods in our OWN human consciousness, along with the heady and weird denial of the same thing PROMINENT right there between our eyes. That yes, the trinitarian and even the modalist IS SEEING God HIMself, as…a them, a Godhead of heads (3), or even…as a MODEHEAD of God. In other words, this God is no longer the JEWISH God at all. The OUSIA God has plural souls, characters, referents, identities. And this false narrative then, is as pagan and heathen as the possibilities MADE possible then, became manifest historically. Thus the point Samuel Barrett FIRST makes:
1. Because Jesus Christ is represented by the sacred writers to be as distinct a being from God the Father as one man is distinct from another. “It is written in your law, that the testimony of two men is true. I am one who bear witness of myself, and the Father that sent me beareth witness of me,” John 8:17, 18.
Modalism says Jesus is the SAME GOD he sits in heaven next to. And actually, that this PERSON of God becomes prominent, as the MAIN PERSONA or “soul” of YHWH, revealed in the latest and greatest mien. OPPOSITE of what Jesus himself said. In John, “My Father is greater than all,” Jn 10, and “My Father is greater than I,” Jn 14. What the Athanasian Creed is saying instead:
And the catholic faith is this: that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity; neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Essence. For there is one Person of the Father; another of the Son; and another of the Holy Ghost. But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one; the Glory equal, the Majesty coeternal. Such as the Father is; such is the Son; and such is the Holy Ghost. The Father uncreated; the Son uncreated; and the Holy Ghost uncreated. The Father unlimited; the Son unlimited; and the Holy Ghost unlimited. The Father eternal; the Son eternal; and the Holy Ghost eternal. And yet they are not three eternals; but one eternal. As also there are not three uncreated; nor three infinites, but one uncreated; and one infinite. So likewise the Father is Almighty; the Son Almighty; and the Holy Ghost Almighty. And yet they are not three Almighties; but one Almighty. So the Father is God; the Son is God; and the Holy Ghost is God. And yet they are not three Gods; but one God. So likewise the Father is Lord; the Son Lord; and the Holy Ghost Lord. And yet not three Lords; but one Lord. For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity; to acknowledge every Person by himself to be God and Lord; So are we forbidden by the catholic religion; to say, There are three Gods, or three Lords.
Thus, the OUSIA GOD, by which a plurality of minds, souls and essentially…CHARACTERS can exist, intrinsic to the same God. Do you see then…the point Barrett is making? By all NORMAL accounting of…beings and living things, and even supernatural creatures…all are NORMALLY considered in a certain category. To STATE these are not Gods plural, is within the NORMAL BOUNDS of…stating a singularity of…Referent, Character, Subject or Being. Barrett is here FIRST STATING the biblical paradigm. That even for God, there are no pluralities of consciousness because their definition OF a “being” has its own individual but singular “living sense.”
So then, the limiting meaning or semantic of the Shema Command itself, is LIMITING God, to a singular soul or nephesh, Character with a certain set of characteristics, and especially WILL. The WILL of YHWH is what a Judeo-Christian SEEKS after all, right? Two WILLS or three WILLS might actually be in view? HOW NOW BROWN COW? Ask a cow. IT might tell you the same.
Trinitarians view God instead of a MODEGOD, as…a sort of valence by which the Three Persons operate. SOME will say “no persons are in view.” But PROMINENT theologians such as James White INTERPRET the Trinitarian Motif of God as…Three PERSONS in One Being. MAKING again, the Three God motif REALLY what is in view after all is said and done.
Hypocrisy on a Rock. PREACHING then, on that rock, your salvation is requiring THEIR HYPOCRISY and your theology only SALVIFIC if you believe Jesus TOO is God. Barrett is, when all is said and done, only stating the simple and true. Two who ARE GOD are simply in our own beanie brains…TWO GODS.
And it is the NICENE AFFIRMER then, who believes in…polytheism.
The second point reiterated by Barrett, was the impetus for me to investigate the deity of Jesus in the first place, way back in 2011 or so:
2) Because he not only never said that himself was God, but, on the contrary, spoke of the Father, who sent him, as God, and as the only God. “This is life eternal, that they might know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou hast sent,” John 17:3. This language our Saviour used in solemn prayer to “his Father and our Father.”
Jesus NEVER SAID he was God? I was on the Theology Online site and some dude named Desert Reign said this, and it startled me. WHAT? HUH?
After almost 30 years a Christian and I did not know this? The PRESUPPOSITION was…Jesus not only claimed absolute deity, so did his writers in the NT. It immediately started an investigation. But…others hear this and just poo-poo it? Barrett ALSO includes the direct REFUTE of this idea, that Jesus was CLAIMING DEITY. INSTEAD Jesus calls the Father the “ONLY True God,” just as the Shema Command says for ALL Jews. These last eleven posts really have to do with John's own perception of: the so-called Incarnation expressed in the Prologue. For Jesus to be "God manifest in the flesh," the Word was first established as "God" and then stated to be "morphed" or "manifested" in flesh, among men. For mainstreamers then, John is PROCLAIMING God among men, which logically and "reasonably" now means that GODMAN is among men. But, the first presupposition which I can only doubt John really had, HAD to be then, Jesus was GOD to him. In whatever form or NEW capacity He had. Creator and creation now COMBINED. Facilitator and that which He facilitates, MERGED. The whole WORLD has turned inside-out for the trinitarian and modalist, then. If God is truly REdefined in this way...YES our whole world is changed SUBSTANTIALLY. Now it has its own Creator INTRINSIC TO IT. But, as I will show with Paul Silas in the next posts, this was never what Text depicts at all.