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Mrs. J

Friend Wants To Leave Islam

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Hi Everyone,

 

I recently reconnected with an old school friend and she disclosed to me that she is considering leaving Islam though she has been a Muslim her entire life. She often asks me for advice but I have neither encouraged nor discouraged her because I believe that she has to make this decision independently. She is thinking of becoming a 'freelance monotheist' or a Nontrinitarian Christian. I'd like to find out from you guys what it is you would say to encourage her to remain a Muslim.

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Well, in general, I'd remind her of the signs that God sent with the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon him.

 

Like in this thread: (you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetgawaher(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/index.php?s=&showtopic=734272&view=findpost&p=1229589"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetgawaher(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/index.php?s=&sh...t&p=1229589[/url]

 

But you can't get very specific because you do not know why she is considering leaving Islam so you can't address those specific concerns.

 

I'd also remind her not to take her whims as her own personal god just as God does in the Qur'an:

 

Seest thou such a one as taketh for his god his own passion (or impulse)? Couldst thou be a disposer of affairs for him?

Or thinkest thou that most of them listen or understand? They are only like cattle;- nay, they are worse astray in Path. (25:43-44)

 

I'd tell her not to be a freelance monotheist because that would be obeying Satan:

 

For he commands you what is evil and shameful, and that ye should say of Allah that of which ye have no knowledge. (2:169)

 

A freelance monotheist is just going to speak of God without knowledge by merely conjecturing.

 

I would also caution her in the same manner that God cautioned His Messenger Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon them. The pronoun "thee" refers to the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon him.

 

Never will the Jews or the Christians be satisfied with thee unless thou follow their form of religion. Say: "The Guidance of Allah,-that is the (only) Guidance." Wert thou to follow their desires after the knowledge which hath reached thee, then wouldst thou find neither Protector nor helper against Allah. (2:120)

 

 

Even if thou wert to bring to the people of the Book all the Signs (together), they would not follow Thy Qibla; nor art thou going to follow their Qibla; nor indeed will they follow each other's Qibla.

If thou after the knowledge hath reached thee, Wert to follow their (vain) desires,-then wert thou Indeed (clearly) in the wrong. (2:145)

 

Furtermore, I'd encourage her to pray. I don't know her situation but I am going to take a guess and say that she isn't fulfilling her obligation of praying five times a day asking God for guidance with the following Surah which is of course Fatiha: "Thee do we worship, and Thine aid we seek. Show us the straight way, The way of those on whom Thou hast bestowed Thy Grace, those whose (portion) is not wrath, and who go not astray."

 

Like I said, this is merely my guess. She could be praying but I highly doubt it.

 

I'd also discourage from becoming a non-Trinitarian Christian because Christianity has been Trinitarian for centuries. How can you believe in a religion that you know to have been corrupt for centuries? Are you going to take your information about Jesus, peace be upon him, from the canonical Gospels when they were deemed canonical by Trinitarians and were transmitted by Trinitarians, and the other Gospels were deemed heretical by Trinitarians? I'm sure you some will would say that no Christianity is a diverse faith and not everybody believes in the Trinity but the fact of the matter is that non-Trinitarians are a recent phenomena and Christianity has been corrupt for centuries, too late to be salvaged.

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I'd also discourage from becoming a non-Trinitarian Christian because Christianity has been Trinitarian for centuries. How can you believe in a religion that you know to have been corrupt for centuries? Are you going to take your information about Jesus, peace be upon him, from the canonical Gospels when they were deemed canonical by Trinitarians and were transmitted by Trinitarians, and the other Gospels were deemed heretical by Trinitarians? I'm sure you some will would say that no Christianity is a diverse faith and not everybody believes in the Trinity but the fact of the matter is that non-Trinitarians are a recent phenomena and Christianity has been corrupt for centuries, too late to be salvaged.

 

Christianity has been Trinitarian for centuries but not from the beginning. The Gospels pre-Nicene council were preserved for about three centuries by a Christian community which was largely nontrinitarian. Manuscripts and fragments which have been discovered, and ancient witnesses (early theologians and writers who quoted extensively from the gospels) can be used for textual analysis of the ante-Nicene manuscripts. Christianity is second only to Buddhism in the sheer number of scripture which has been discovered, and no other ancient text has such an abundance of manuscript witnesses.

 

You claim that the Scriptures espouse the trinity, if that is the case, then how come there are nontrinitarians such as myself and there have been others throughout Christian history?

 

I have said all of this to you before, yet it seems you choose to continue to ignore the facts or perhaps you are deliberately distorting them. I would urge you to study the gospels and understand the message they relate (not just a few passages here and there taken out of context) first before you make your judgements.

 

Instead of talking about the pros of Islam you are bashing another religion based upon your own misperceptions. Lovely.

 

:sl:

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The Gospels pre-Nicene council were preserved for about three centuries by a Christian community which was largely nontrinitarian. Manuscripts and fragments which have been discovered, and ancient witnesses (early theologians and writers who quoted extensively from the gospels)

 

The early theologicans and writers who quoted from the Gospels all had heretic beliefs according to you, i.e. they believed in the Trinity, believed Jesus to be the begotten Son of God and a Lord to be worshipped. I will give you some examples: Justin Martyr, Polycarp, Iranaues (the man who decided that there should be exactly four Gospels and decided which ones they were), Ignatius of Antioch, Tatian the Syrian, Hippolytus and Tertullian. All preceded the Nicene council. They lived between the 2nd and 3rd centuries. These men reflect how widespread the Trinity and other beliefs that are considered heretical by you (Jesus being the begotten Son of God and a Lord to be worshiped) were - they were the prevelant beliefs.

 

But if you think there are early non-Trinitarian, non-heretic (according to you) theologians and writers who extensively quote from the Gospels, feel free to show them. If you can't show them, then it is quite obvious who is distorting the facts and working from misconceptions.

 

You claim that the Scriptures espouse the trinity, if that is the case, then how come there are nontrinitarians such as myself and there have been others throughout Christian history?

 

This question of yours is neither here nor there, it is an empty one. I could also reverse it back to you and ask, "If the Scriptures didn't espouse the Trinity, then how come there are Trinitarians?" Why are not only the Catholics but also the many Orthodox branches and Anglican as well as Protestant branches Trinitarian? Protestants for were Trinitarians (historically speaking they didn't separate from the Church because they disagreed with the Trinity; they believed in it) and the majority of Protestants still are Trinitarians.

 

I have said all of this to you before, yet it seems you choose to continue to ignore the facts or perhaps you are deliberately distorting them. I would urge you to study the gospels and understand the message they relate (not just a few passages here and there taken out of context) first before you make your judgements.

 

I am not ignoring the facts nor am I distorting anything. In fact, that's what you are doing. I have studied the Gospels' history and their contents as well. I think that you will only consider me to have studied them when I agree with your conclusions, right?

 

Instead of talking about the pros of Islam you are bashing another religion based upon your own misperceptions. Lovely.

 

Didn't I put up a link where I talk about the pros of Islam first and saved the "bad stuff" for last? I am sorry but I am not bashing anything. If a Muslim is considering, or anybody for that matter, to convert to Christianity this is what I will them. And I also tell it to people who are currently Christians. They are not misconceptions. Seriously, what do you expect me to say when you ask a question about a person who is thinking of converting to freelance monotheism or Christianity? Obviously both falsehoods (freelance monotheism and Christianity) are going to be addressed.

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I recently reconnected with an old school friend and she disclosed to me that she is considering leaving Islam though she has been a Muslim her entire life. She often asks me for advice but I have neither encouraged nor discouraged her because I believe that she has to make this decision independently. She is thinking of becoming a 'freelance monotheist' or a Nontrinitarian Christian. I'd like to find out from you guys what it is you would say to encourage her to remain a Muslim.

 

Been a Muslim her entire life, eh? And now she wants to leave Islam. Makes me wonder why she accepted Islam in the first place. There was a time when I found Islam and then began interacting with Muslims. There was a time when a lot of pressure was put upon me to convert but I flatly refused. It wasn't until about eight years later that understanding came to me, alhamdulillah. After that, it didn't matter a whit what anyone said to me. I accepted Islam fully understanding what I was getting myself into. I didn't accept it because I was forced into it, or because Muslims pushed me to it. One doesn't accept a way of life just because people are encouraging you to do so. Who are people to tell you what to do anyway? I guess therefore I have nothing to say to your friend. God has made us all free creatures. Free to choose Islam. Free to leave Islam. There is really no compulsion in religion. Whoever accepts Islam must do so wholeheartedly, willingly, voluntarily. Otherwise, there is no meaning to it whatsoever.

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Whoever accepts Islam must do so wholeheartedly, willingly, voluntarily. Otherwise, there is no meaning to it whatsoever.

Hi White Horse, I totally agree. Otherwise religion becomes a chore or a cultural practice. God is pleased by those who love Him, seek Him and worship Him wholeheartedly. :sl:

 

I am not ignoring the facts nor am I distorting anything. In fact, that's what you are doing. I have studied the Gospels' history and their contents as well. I think that you will only consider me to have studied them when I agree with your conclusions, right?

Hi Younes,

No, you don’t have to agree with me but if you do not understand what Jesus meant when he said his 'fake believers' were children of satan (and what satan meant), or the context in which he was called 'Lord' or why he called the Pharisees hypocrites then it's clear that you have not studied the Gospels (in Aramaic & Greek, understanding the idioms and culture, etc.), nor do you understand how Bibles are translated. If you are such an expert, why did I have to explain and translate so many things for you? If your sources were reliable and your research was complete and genuine, then this would not have been necessary.

 

The early theologicans and writers who quoted from the Gospels all had heretic beliefs according to you, i.e. they believed in the Trinity, believed Jesus to be the begotten Son of God and a Lord to be worshipped. I will give you some examples: Justin Martyr, Polycarp, Iranaues (the man who decided that there should be exactly four Gospels and decided which ones they were), Ignatius of Antioch, Tatian the Syrian, Hippolytus and Tertullian. All preceded the Nicene council. They were lived between the 2nd and 3rd centuries. These men reflect how widespread the Trinity and other beliefs that are considered heretical by you (Jesus being the begotten Son of God and a Lord to be worshiped) were - they were the prevelant beliefs.

 

But if you think there are early non-Trinitarian, non-heretic (according to you) theologians and writers who extensively quote from the Gospels, feel free to show them. If you can't show them, then it is quite obvious who is distorting the facts and working from misconceptions.

 

If the Trinity existed from the start and I am simply distorting the facts as you claim,

 

(a) why is there no clear description or formula in the Bible?

(b) why is the Bible devoid of the word ‘trinity’?

©why did a council have to debate its exact form 325 A.D.?

 

You must think I am delusional or something so here are some historical facts:

 

"AD 200. . Noetus had been expelled from the Smyrnaean church for teaching that Christ was the Father, and that the Father himself was born, and suffered, and died." - A History of the Christian Church 2nd Ed. 1985 Williston Walker

 

 

"Nestorius [5th Century A.D.] preached a sermon against calling the virgin Mary ‘the mother of God’ declaring she did not bear a deity, she bore a man,” - Man’s Religions John B. Noss 1968

 

". . . scholars generally agree that there is no doctrine of the trinity as such in either the Old Testament or the New Testament." - The HarperCollins Encyclopedia of Catholicism 1995

 

"Christianity derived from Judaism and Judaism was strictly Unitarian (believing in one God). The road which led from Jerusalem to Nicea was scarcely a straight one. Fourth century trinitarianism did not reflect accurately early Christian teaching regarding the nature of God; it was, on the contrary, a deviation from this teaching." - The Encyclopedia Americana 1956

 

"The formulation 'one God in three persons' was not solidly established, certainly not fully assimilated into Christian life and its profession of faith, prior to the end of the 4th century." - The New Catholic Encyclopedia 1967

 

"Neither the word trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as such, appears in the New Testament, nor did Jesus and his followers intend to contradict the Shema in the Old Testament: 'Hear, O israel: The Lord our God is one Lord' (Deut. 6:4). . . The doctrine developed gradually over several centuries and through many controversies. . . . By the end of the 4th century . . . the doctrine of the trinity took substantially the form it has maintained ever since." - The New Encyclopedia Britannica 1976

 

"The trinity of God is defined by the church as the belief that in God are three persons who subsist in one nature. The belief as so defined was reached only in the 4th and 5th centuries AD and hence is not explicitly and formally a biblical belief." - Dictionary of The Bible 1995 John L. Mckenzie

 

"The Bible lacks the express declaration that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are of equal essence. [said Karl Barth]" - The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology 1976

 

"For him [Clement] the trinity consisted of a hierarchy of three graded beings, and from that concept - derived from Platonism - depended much of the remainder of his theological teaching." - The Rise of Christianity W.H.C. Frend 1985

 

"Arius held that Christ, . . . was a created being; he was made like other creatures out of nothing, . . . The Son, he argued, had a beginning, while God was without beginning." - Man's Religions 1968 John B. Noss

 

Three of the Bishops in attendance at the Nicene convention refused to sign the creed.

 

 

Is this enough evidence for you?

 

 

If it was so widespread, why was Noetus expelled from the Syrian church for claiming that Jesus was God in 200 A.D.? Your sources are not accurate because they clearly only present one side of the story. The belief in the Trinity grew gradually from 100 A.D. and became official in 325 A.D.

 

Just because those theologians are notable now, does not mean that they were as notable then nor does it mean that they represented the majority. Had the writings of other theologians (nontrinitarians) been preserved and considered acceptable by the Nicene council then Christianity would look different today. These theologians (who were not in touch with Jesus’ Jewish and Aramaic background) did espouse the trinity, however it is worthy to note that their deductions and theories do not appear in the Gospels as they do in their polemics. If they did, Nontrinitarians would not exist. They drew form the Gospels for inspiration, yet not all of them came to the same conclusions.

 

You bring up the fact that they were Trinitarians as if their quotes are tainted by their beliefs (ignoring the textual evidence), but Sergius the Monk a.k.a Bahira is believed to have been either a Nestorian or an Arian, yet his claim that Muhammad was a prophet is acceptable to Muslims. So it’s either (a) you accept his testimony even though he believed Jesus was the ‘Son’, or (b) you claim he was a Unitarian meaning that you accept that Christian Unitarianism is not a recent innovation. If you can accept Sergius’ testimony despite his Arian/Nestorian beliefs, then the quotes of the early theologians should be acceptable to you unless you are willing to admit that you have a double standard.

 

Partially or wholly Nontrinitarian sects and beliefs in early Christianity:

 

Jewish Christians – (Nazarenes) first century A.D. until 5th century, movement has resurfaced. Influenced the Syriac Orthodox Church and others.

Ebionites – 1st to 4th century, believed that Jesus was a messenger or prophet or the perfect human but denied his virgin birth and resurrection.

Gnostics – until 1000 A.D, and resurfaced in some of the beliefs of the Cathars and has resurfaced in modern times.

Arians – Until Islamic conquests in 7th Century, resurfaced during the Reformation period.

Nestorianism - from 431 A.D., influenced the Church of the East and Assyrian Church of the East.

Adoptionism – from second 2nd century A.D., resurfaced post-Reform.

 

The canonical Gospels were used prior to the canonisation of the Bible and even before Iraneous’ time.

 

This question of yours is neither here nor there, it is an empty one. I could also reverse it back to you and ask, "If the Scriptures didn't espouse the Trinity, then how come there are Trinitarians?" Why are not only the Catholics but also the many Orthodox branches and Anglican as well as Protestant branches Trinitarian? Protestants for the majority were (they didn't separate from the Church because they disagreed with the Trinity) and still are Trinitarians.

Easy! This is because Trinitarian Christians subscribe to additional doctrines. They cannot use the Bible alone to describe the Trinity as they believe it, and their interpretations can easily be refuted. If you knew where Trinitarians got their beliefs from, you would understand that it is not in the Bible, but you speak as if you know everything.

 

There were Trinity rejecters prior and during the Protestant Reformation, and modern Unitarian Churches trace their roots to the Reformation period.

 

If you conducted a bit of unbiased research you would see that I am not distorting the facts. I would also suggest that you read the “Is Jesus God?” topic.

 

Do you refuse accept what I tell you because that would mean that the Quran did not reflect the beliefs of all Christians during and prior to Muhammad’s time? Or has the notion that all Christians are trinitarians been so deeply implanted into your mind that you refuse to accept evidence suggesting anything else?

 

Nontrinitarianism is not a recent innovation, but knowing you and your attitude you will be unwilling to even acknowledge that you are wrong so I will expect you to do the ‘classic Younes dance’ and respond with another objection t Christianity instead.

 

Obviously both falsehoods (freelance monotheism and Christianity) are going to be addressed.

And your ‘authoritative’ assessment of Christianity is based upon incomplete evidence as we have established. It’s clear you are not interested in learning the whole story about Christianity but only that which confirms your misconceptions and objections, right?

 

“I am sorry but I am not bashing anything.” If you call it a falsehood and have nothing nice to say, are you not bashing? Just be honest, you think Islam is the only valid religion before God’s eyes.

 

Peace.

Edited by samantha-g

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But you can't get very specific because you do not know why she is considering leaving Islam so you can't address those specific concerns.

 

I do know why she wants to leave, but I do not feel it is appropriate to disclose.

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I'd also discourage from becoming a non-Trinitarian Christian because Christianity has been Trinitarian for centuries. How can you believe in a religion that you know to have been corrupt for centuries? Are you going to take your information about Jesus, peace be upon him, from the canonical Gospels when they were deemed canonical by Trinitarians and were transmitted by Trinitarians, and the other Gospels were deemed heretical by Trinitarians? I'm sure you some will would say that no Christianity is a diverse faith and not everybody believes in the Trinity but the fact of the matter is that non-Trinitarians are a recent phenomena and Christianity has been corrupt for centuries, too late to be salvaged.

 

(1) Some of the manuscripts and fragments which have been discovered pre-date the Nicene Convention. The other gospels were deemed heretical because their auuthenticity was in question and some of them popped out of nowhere to espouse claims that Mary was the ‘Mother of God’ and others were Gnostic. The four canonical gospels were widely used even when Trinitarianism was not so widespread.

 

(2) Non-trinitarians are not a recent phenomena. You should research more thoroughly before you call something a fact.

 

(3) As if there have not been any sects and movements within Islam which you consider to be ‘out of the fold’ and therefore heretical for centuries. I could also ask you, “How can you believe in a religion that you know to have been corrupt for centuries?†because of these other beliefs and because for centuries some Muslims have perpetrated atrocities and have oppressed women in the name of Islam.

 

(There is a reply further up where I have addressed your accusations.)

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Hi Everyone,

 

I recently reconnected with an old school friend and she disclosed to me that she is considering leaving Islam though she has been a Muslim her entire life. She often asks me for advice but I have neither encouraged nor discouraged her because I believe that she has to make this decision independently. She is thinking of becoming a 'freelance monotheist' or a Nontrinitarian Christian. I'd like to find out from you guys what it is you would say to encourage her to remain a Muslim.

 

 

 

I would say to her to see these logical evidences --> you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yettowards-understanding-Islam(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/

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Linus,PM me your link link & I'll post it IA..you need to reach at least 50 posts before you can post link.., so how is the weather on your part of the planet?

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(a) why is there no clear description or formula in the Bible?

(b) why is the Bible devoid of the word ‘trinity’?

©why did a council have to debate its exact form 325 A.D.?

 

a) The Trinity is clearly found in the Gospel of John in chapter 1. In other Gospels it is not as clear.

b) Well, the absence of the word "Trinity" means nothing. The word "Tawhid" is not found in the Qur'an nor the hadiths but it doesn't mean that the Qur'an and hadiths don't teach Tawhid.

c) Due to the Arian heresy. However, let me say that Arius' beliefs are also very heretical. Do you agree with this beliefs?

 

Arius maintained that the Son of God was a Creature, made from nothing; and that he was God's First Production, before all ages. And he argued that everything else was created through the Son. Thus, said the Arians, only the Son was directly created and begotten of God; and therefore there was a time that He had not existence. Arius believed the Son Jesus was capable of His own free will of right and wrong, and that "were He in the truest sense a son, He must have come after the Father, therefore the time obviously was when He was not, and hence He was a finite being,"[28] and was under God the Father. The Arians appealed to Scripture, quoting verses such as John 14:28: "the Father is greater than I", and also Colossians 1:15: "Firstborn of all creation."

 

Because most extant written material on Arianism was written by its opponents, the nature of Arian teachings is difficult to define precisely today. The letter of Auxentius,[8] a 4th-century Arian bishop of Milan, regarding the missionary Ulfilas, gives the clearest picture of Arian beliefs on the nature of the Trinity: God the Father ("unbegotten"), always existing, was separate from the lesser Jesus Christ ("only-begotten"), born before time began and creator of the world. The Father, working through the Son, created the Holy Spirit, who was subservient to the Son as the Son was to the Father. The Father was seen as "the only true God". First Corinthians 8:5-8:6 was cited as proof text:

 

Indeed, even though there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth — as in fact there are many gods and many lords — yet for us there is one God (Gk. theos - θεος), the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord (kyrios - κυριος), Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

 

From wikipedia

 

So do you believe that everything was created through Jesus? Do you believe Jesus to have created the Holy Spirit? Arius also believed that Jesus was begotten in the sense that he had a beggining whereas the mainstream believes that was without beggining.

 

The Nicea council wasn't about whether Jesus, peace be upon him, was merely human. Everybody in that council believed him to be a supernatural being through whom the world was created and everybody held beliefs that would be considered heretical by Muslims and by you, too.

 

"AD 200. . Noetus had been expelled from the Smyrnaean church for teaching that Christ was the Father, and that the Father himself was born, and suffered, and died." - A History of the Christian Church 2nd Ed. 1985 Williston Walker

 

I am sorry but Noetus wasn't expelled because he taught that Jesus, peace be upon him, was God. Read the passage you quoted again. He was expelled because he taught that the Father became human, suffered and died whereas the normal Trinitarians teach that the Son became human and died, not the Father. You ask why was he expelled from the Syrian Church if the Trinity was so widespread? In fact, this question works against you and demonstrates that the Trinity was very widespread. He was expelled because he believed in a a heretical form of Trinity, i.e. the Father became man and died, instead of the mainstream Trinity, i.e. the Son became man and died.

 

(you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yet######/fathers/0521.htm"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yet######/fathers/0521.htm[/url]

 

"Nestorius [5th Century A.D.] preached a sermon against calling the virgin Mary ‘the mother of God’ declaring she did not bear a deity, she bore a man,” - Man’s Religions John B. Noss 1968

 

Again bringing up Nestorius only does you a disservice because he also believed Jesus to be God.

 

From wiki:

 

Nestorius developed his Christological views as an attempt to rationally explain and understand the incarnation of the divine Logos, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity as the man Jesus Christ. He had studied at the School of Antioch where his mentor had been Theodore of Mopsuestia; Theodore and other Antioch theologians had long taught a literalist interpretation of the Bible and stressed the distinctiveness of the human and divine natures of Jesus. Nestorius took his Antiochian leanings with him when he was appointed Patriarch of Constantinople by Eastern Roman Emperor Theodosius II in 428.

 

Nestorius' teachings became the root of controversy when he publicly challenged usage of the long-used title Theotokos (Mother of God) for the Virgin Mary. He suggested that the title denied Christ's full humanity, arguing instead that Jesus had two loosely joined natures, the divine Logos and the human Jesus. As such he proposed Christotokos (Mother of Christ) as a more suitable title for Mary.

 

So basically Nestorious believed that Jesus had two distinct natures, divine and human, while the mainstream Trinity holds him to be both divine and human at the same time. See? Bring up examples such as this doesn't do you any favour - they just work against you.

 

Three of the Bishops in attendance at the Nicene convention refused to sign the creed.

Is this enough evidence for you?

 

Considering the fact that three Bishops out of hundreds refused to sign is really not earth-shattering. The fact that hundreds of bishops signed a creed just goes to show how firmly Trinitarianism was rooted in Christendom.

 

No, the evidence is not enough because you ignore context. Like I said, bringing up Arius, Nestorius and Noetus only serve against you because the first two still held heretical beliefs by your standards and the last one was expelled because he taught a different form of Trinity that went against mainstream Trinity. Like I said, it is obvious who is distorting facts and working from misconceptions. Like I have said previously many times before, you always like to ignore context to make it suit your particular beliefs.

 

Just because those theologians are notable now, does not mean that they were as notable then nor does it mean that they represented the majority. Had the writings of other theologians (nontrinitarians) been preserved and considered acceptable by the Nicene council then Christianity would look different today.

 

I highly doubt it because it is quite evident that the beliefs of those theologians were the mainstream and the rest were just fringe beliefs.

 

You bring up the fact that they were Trinitarians as if their quotes are tainted by their beliefs (ignoring the textual evidence), but Sergius the Monk a.k.a Bahira is believed to have been either a Nestorian or an Arian, yet his claim that Muhammad was a prophet is acceptable to Muslims. So it’s either (a) you accept his testimony even though he believed Jesus was the ‘Son’, or (b) you claim he was a Unitarian meaning that you accept that Christian Unitarianism is not a recent innovation. If you can accept Sergius’ testimony despite his Arian/Nestorian beliefs, then the quotes of the early theologians should be acceptable to you unless you are willing to admit that you have a double standard.

 

First of all, when I say that non-Trinitarians are recent phenomena you must keep context in mind. I am sure there have always been Unitarians through out the history of Christianity, however, the majority has always been Trinitarians who believed that Jesus is God, the Son of God and a Lord to be worshipped.

I haven't said that there have been no Unitarian Christians. What I am saying is that there haven't been enough of them to have a deep impact on Christianity and that the Gospels and the rest of the books of the NT were not transmitted by them, they were transmitted by Trinitarians. Obviously there have been as evidenced by the Ebionites, whom I have previously mentioned on this forum, and the Jewish Christians but they didn't transmit anything; all Christian information has been transmitted by Trinitarians. The transmitters of the Christians religion have been for centuries Trinitarians.

 

First of all, Bahira's testimony by itself means nothing. I don't believe in the Prophethood of Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon him, because of Bahira's testimony, no Muslim does and the Companions, may God be pleased with them, did not.

 

Secondly, we do not know anything about Bahira's beliefs, therefore, it is useless to bring him up in this discussion.

 

Jewish Christians – (Nazarenes) first century A.D. until 5th century, movement has resurfaced. Influenced the Syriac Orthodox Church and others.

Ebionites – 1st to 4th century, believed that Jesus was a messenger or prophet or the perfect human but denied his virgin birth and resurrection.

Gnostics – until 1000 A.D, and resurfaced in some of the beliefs of the Cathars and has resurfaced in modern times.

Arians – Until Islamic conquests in 7th Century, resurfaced during the Reformation period.

Nestorianism - from 431 A.D., influenced the Church of the East and Assyrian Church of the East.

Adoptionism – from second 2nd century A.D., resurfaced post-Reform.

 

Only the first two of these groups might help you advance your arguement. But like I said, you don't get your Gospels from the Jewish Christians and Ebionites who had a Gospel of their own. You get your Gospels from Trinitarians.

 

Adoptionism is strictly condemned in the Qur'an where it says that the Heavens and the Earth are almost ready to shatter because people have said that God has taken unto Himself a Son, and that's precisely what Adoptionism is all about. Arianism also believes in a Jesus through whom everything was created and to whom the Holy Spirit is subservient and Nestorians believe that Jesus is a deity and a human but the two don't mix. As for Gnostics, I bet they would be considered heretical by your standards, too.

 

The canonical Gospels were used prior to the canonisation of the Bible and even before Iraneous’ time.

 

So? This really means nothing. Did I claim that they were not in use prior to the canonisation of the Bible?

 

Do you refuse accept what I tell you because that would mean that the Quran did not reflect the beliefs of all Christians during and prior to Muhammad’s time? Or has the notion that all Christians are trinitarians been so deeply implanted into your mind that you refuse to accept evidence suggesting anything else?

 

The answer to both of these questions is no. You apparently still don't get what I am saying.

 

 

“I am sorry but I am not bashing anything.” If you call it a falsehood and have nothing nice to say, are you not bashing? Just be honest, you think Islam is the only valid religion before God’s eyes.

 

When I say that I am not bashing it, I meant I am not going out of my way to bash it. It's quite simple. You bring up a case of a person who is thinking of leaving Islam and is thinking of becoming a freelance monotheist or a non-Trinitarian. My answer is to tell her why she should remain Muslim (I posted link first mentioning the pros of Islam) then I said why I think she shouldn't become a freelance monotheist and last why she shouldn't become a Christian. Am I also bashing freelance monotheism?

 

You are quite right in saying that I think that Islam is the only valid religion before God's eyes. But I have never tried to hide it so I don't get the "just be honest". In fact, every Muslims believes that Islam is the only valid religion before God:

 

The Religion before Allah is Islam (3:19)

 

If anyone desires a religion other than Islam , never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter He will be in the ranks of those who have lost (3:85)

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(3) As if there have not been any sects and movements within Islam which you consider to be ‘out of the fold’ and therefore heretical for centuries. I could also ask you, “How can you believe in a religion that you know to have been corrupt for centuries?” because of these other beliefs and because for centuries some Muslims have perpetrated atrocities and have oppressed women in the name of Islam.

 

By bringing this up, you just show that you really haven't understood what I am saying.

 

Since you brought up Islam, I will show you examples. Let's say for the sake of arguement that Islam (the Qur'an) had been transmitted for centuries by people who believed that Ali is God. There is a such a group of "Muslims" (they are not Muslims, they are disbelievers that's why I put the quote marks) in the present day, they are called Alawis. Let's say that Islam had been transmitted by these guys for centuries and they were the mainstream for centuries, then obviously I couldn't believe in Islam. It would go against all reason.

 

Another more relevant example perhaps is those Muslims who deny the Sunnah. These people are foolish because they get their religion from people who followed the Sunnah. They learn their prayers and the way of making Hajj from people who follow the Sunnah. They get biographies of the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of God be upon him, and his Companions, may God be pleased with them, from traditional Muslims although they are also known as Hadith rejectors. The Qur'an has been transmitted for centuries by people who followed the Sunnah and they get the Qur'an from them but yet they think that the Sunnah is a diabolical innovation and hadiths are also fabricated, yet they get biographies from the same hadiths.

 

This is analogous to your case.

 

Islam has not been heretical for centuries. Islam hasn't been transmitted by people who believe that a man is god for centuries unlike your religion. The majority of Muslims have not been people that believe that a man is god for centuries.

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a) The Trinity is clearly found in the Gospel of John in chapter 1. In other Gospels it is not as clear.

b) Well, the absence of the word "Trinity" means nothing. The word "Tawhid" is not found in the Qur'an nor the hadiths but it doesn't mean that the Qur'an and hadiths don't teach Tawhid.

c) Due to the Arian heresy. However, let me say that Arius' beliefs are also very heretical. Do you agree with this beliefs?

 

Do I have to explain John 1 to you again?

 

The concept of Tawhid is in the New Testament and the Old Testament

 

If I were an Arian, I would not be a Unitarian. But the Arian Heresy is besides the point. My point is that the Trinity did not take its current form until the convention because there were various theories. If the Trinity as you claim existed from the start, then neither its form nor its very existence would have needed to be debated.

 

So do you believe that everything was created through Jesus? Do you believe Jesus to have created the Holy Spirit? Arius also believed that Jesus was begotten in the sense that he had a beggining whereas the mainstream believes that was without beggining.

Why would I believe that? If I did, I would basically be saying that I believe Jesus was a deity meaning that I am no longer Unitarian. The Book of Genesis [Creation] does not say that Jesus or 'the Son' created the Universe and neither does John 1 in its original language and Jesus did not say that. If he did, I think it would appear in the Gospels since most trinity believers accept that to be true. (See the "Is Jesus God?" Post cause I explained a bit it there.) Jesus did not create the 'Holy Spirit'.

 

Only the first two of these groups might help you advance your arguement.

Which is why at the top of the list I wrote "Partially or wholly nontrinitarian sects..." I know that.

 

First of all, when I say that non-Trinitarians are recent phenomena you must keep context in mind. I am sure there have always been Unitarians through out the history of Christianity, however, the majority has always been Trinitarians who believed that Jesus is God, the Son of God and a Lord to be worshipped.

I haven't said that there have been no Unitarian Christians. What I am saying is that there haven't been enough of them to have a deep impact on Christianity and that the Gospels and the rest of the books of the NT were not transmitted by them, they were transmitted by Trinitarians. Obviously there have been as evidenced by the Ebionites, whom I have previously mentioned on this forum, and the Jewish Christians but they didn't transmit anything; all Christian information has been transmitted by Trinitarians. The transmitters of the Christians religion have been for centuries Trinitarians.

The point of origin of the Gospels is in the first century from the disciples of Jesus. We know that his disciples lived in the 1st century and that they were Jewish Christians, i.e. non Trinitarians (Yet you claim that Christianity has always been largely Trinitarian.) so if “all Christian information” was transmitted by Trinitarians, then you say that the NT gospels say that Jesus’ followers believed in a Trinity further confirming that your understanding of the gospels and your knowledge of Christian history is erroneous and incomplete.

 

They haven’t made a large impact throughout history because they were sidelined after 325 A.D.

 

“All Christian information” is anything to do with Christianity and there are quite a number of apocryphal texts from the Gnostics and whoever else...

 

Considering the fact that three Bishops out of hundreds refused to sign is really not earth-shattering. The fact that hundreds of bishops signed a creed just goes to show how firmly Trinitarianism was rooted in Christendom.

By 325 A.D. they [the Bishops who participated] had come to accept the deductions of the theologians you mentioned and considered all else heretical. Why do you think they did not invite Ebionites? Had they participated the stats would have been different. The council of Nicaea was a council which did not represent all of the various sects like the Ebionites, Gnostics., Jewish Christians.. It was a council of trinity believers to discuss the trinity among other things.

 

I am sorry but Noetus wasn't expelled because he taught that Jesus, peace be upon him, was God. Read the passage you quoted again. He was expelled because he taught that the Father became human, suffered and died whereas the normal Trinitarians teach that the Son became human and died, not the Father. He was expelled because he believed in a a heretical form of Trinity, i.e. the Father became man and died, instead of the mainstream Trinity, i.e. the Son became man and died.

 

You ask why was he expelled from the Syrian Church if the Trinity was so widespread? In fact, this question works against you and demonstrates that the Trinity was very widespread.

 

You did not read what I wrote properly. I said:

 

"If it was so widespread, why was Noetus expelled from the Syrian church for claiming that Jesus was God in 200 A.D.?"

 

Here’s some info:

 

In Christianity, Sabellianism, (also known as modalism, modalistic monarchianism, or modal monarchism) is the nontrinitarian belief that the Heavenly Father, Resurrected Son and Holy Spirit are different modes or aspects of one God, as perceived by the believer, rather than three distinct persons in God Himself.

 

(you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_en.wikipedia(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/wiki/Modalistic_monarchianism"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_en.wikipedia(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/wiki/Modalistic_monarchianism[/url]

 

This man did not believe in the Trinity, he was a kind of nontrinitarian. Perhaps I should have given you the whole story. Yes, I understand he believed Jesus was God, so you don't have to remind me.

 

I know what Nestorius believed, and many Eastern Christians are still Nestorians today. The point in mentioning Nestorians, Arians and Noetus is that Jesus' was not considered part of a trinity as many today believe doand the trinity did not always exist in the current form among westerners. So if the trinity as Father, Son, Holy Spirit being co-equal, i.e. the Trinity, existed from the start as you claim (because it seems you were not aware of the other beliefs and the history) why did they have to debate it in 325 A.D.? Why does the Bible not say that Father Son Holy Spirit are co-equal but in fact says the complete opposite?

 

You are quite right in saying that I think that Islam is the only valid religion before God's eyes. But I have never tried to hide it so I don't get the "just be honest".

Then don't apologise for it otherwise your apology is insincere.

 

You apparently still don't get what I am saying.

Because your conclusions are based upon incomplete information.

 

 

And you keep quiet about the points where you clearly held misconceptions, instead you go on about Arianism and Nestorianism... (when I clearly stated that they were part nontrinitarian so reminding me of that really is not necessary), and you ask me if I believe Jesus created the universe. Classic.

Edited by samantha-g

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Do I have to explain John 1 to you again?

 

You mean all that talk about Aramaic, Miltha and comparing it to the concept of Jesus, peace be upon him, having the title Kalimatu Allah in Islam? Save your breath. I found it thoroughly unconvincing the first time. Just another example of you twisting things to suit your preconcieved notions and ignoring context.

 

But read this:

 

(you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_en.wikipedia(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/wiki/Trinity#Jesus_as_God"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_en.wikipedia(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/wiki/Trinity#Jesus_as_God[/url]

 

I wonder why the Gospel of John is the first thing that is quoted in that article? It couldn't be because the Gospel of John is trying to portray Jesus as a deity?

 

The point of origin of the Gospels is in the first century from the disciples of Jesus. We know that his disciples lived in the 1st century and that they were Jewish Christians, i.e. non Trinitarians (Yet you claim that Christianity has always been largely Trinitarian.) so if “all Christian information” was transmitted by Trinitarians, then you say that the NT gospels say that Jesus’ followers believed in a Trinity further confirming that your understanding of the gospels and your knowledge of Christian history is erroneous and incomplete.

 

Nonsense. As I have stated, the Gospels weren't written by the Apostles. You don't have unbroken chains of transmission for the Gospels. This was discussed in a previous thread. No Christian so far has stepped up and shown an unbroken chain of transmission for the Gospels. The Jews at least claim an unbroken chain of transmission for the Torah, why don't Christians? Precisely because they don't have such chains. Furthermore, the chain of Apostolic Succession was debunked but it wouldn't matter in your case since you are not a Catholic. If you do know of such a chain of transmission, bring it up so we can discuss it.

 

“All Christian information” is anything to do with Christianity and there are quite a number of apocryphal texts from the Gnostics and whoever else...

 

What I mean by all Christian information is the New Testament. All Christian information that is considered canonical was transmitted by Trinitarians. Obviously Apocrypha wasn't transmitted by Trinitarians/Orthodox Christians.

 

By 325 A.D. they [the Bishops who participated] had come to accept the deductions of the theologians you mentioned and considered all else heretical. Why do you think they did not invite Ebionites? Had they participated the stats would have been different. The council of Nicaea was a council which did not represent all of the various sects like the Ebionites, Gnostics., Jewish Christians.. It was a council of trinity believers to discuss the trinity among other things.

 

I am sorry but it is clear that the council of Nicea represented the mainstream because they came from all over the world representing their various communities. Ebionites, Jewish Christians and Gnostics never were mainstream, they were always fringe groups except maybe right at the beggining but they became very, very quickly fringe groups as Christianity spread and thus they were irrelevant.

 

You did not read what I wrote properly. I said:

 

"If it was so widespread, why was Noetus expelled from the Syrian church for claiming that Jesus was God in 200 A.D.?"

 

No, I did read what you wrote properly and I answered you. He wasn't expelled for claiming that Jesus was God because the Syrian Church also believed Jesus to be God. He was expelled because he taught that Jesus was the Father who had come on Earth to suffer and die while the Syrian Church like the rest of mainstream Christianity at the time believed that it was only the Son that suffered and died. In essence, he was expelled for teaching a different form of Trinity, but a Trinity nonetheless in my book.

 

I know what Nestorius believed, and many Eastern Christians are still Nestorians today. The point in mentioning Nestorians, Arians and Noetus is that Jesus' was not considered part of a trinity as many today believe doand the trinity did not always exist in the current form among westerners.

 

Well, your point is moot anyway. I agree the Jesus was not always considered a part of a Trinity excactly in the same manner as many Christians today believe and it did not always exist in the same form. However, Jesus was largely believed to be a deity very early on in Christianity's history. I really don't care whether the Nestorians, Arians and Noetus held different beliefs contratry to today's Trinity because I consider all of them to be Trinitarians in the sense that they all believe that Jesus, peace be upon him, is God or a deity. So what if they disagreed about the excact nature of Jesus? At the end of the day, they believed Jesus was a deity. Like it matters to me whether they believed that he was the Father, had one unified nature or two distinct natures, or believed that he wasn't always in existence but still was the creator of the universe and of the Holy Spirit, or that he was inferior to the Father. To me it is all the all same from a pratical point of view.

 

So if the trinity as Father, Son, Holy Spirit being co-equal, i.e. the Trinity, existed from the start as you claim (because it seems you were not aware of the other beliefs and the history) why did they have to debate it in 325 A.D.?

 

No, I was aware that the details were debated but I am also aware that Jesus was at large considered a deity. And I agree that the Trinity (belief that Jesus is God, I don't care about the details) didn't strictly speaking exist right from the start but relatively speaking it might as well had because it entered the picture very early on spreading far and wide dominating Christendom. It was the main doctrine by the 2nd and 3rd centuries among Christians; and it existed in the first century as evidenced by the Gospel of John and other NT writings. I am not saying that the doctrine didn't evolve, of course it did. You are having trouble at looking at the big picture.

 

Then don't apologise for it otherwise your apology is insincere.

 

I haven't and won't apologise for saying that Islam is the only religion before God.

 

And you keep quiet about the points where you clearly held misconceptions, instead you go on about Arianism and Nestorianism... (when I clearly stated that they were part nontrinitarian so reminding me of that really is not necessary), and you ask me if I believe Jesus created the universe. Classic.

 

You obviously must not be a friend of rhetoric because the question, "Do you believe Jesus to have created the universe?" was a rhetorical question to which I didn't expect an answer because I already knew that you don't consider Jesus to be a creator. That's why I said in my previous post: "Like I said, bringing up Arius, Nestorius and Noetus only serve against you because the first two still held heretical beliefs by your standards". Failing to understand the subtleties of rhetoric and then trying to be sarcastic about it - now that's classic.

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uhhh.... now this is nice... im waiting to see what samantha would say to this... lol. :sl:

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I'd like to hear your interpretation on these passages. I am using the translation that you have quoted many times on this board: the New Living Translation.

 

Philippians chapter 2:5-8

 

Your attitude should be the same that Christ Jesus had. 6 Though he was God, he did not demand and cling to his rights as God. 7 He made himself nothing; he took the humble position of a slave and appeared in human form. 8 And in human form he obediently humbled himself even further by dying a criminal's death on a cross. 9 Because of this, God raised him up to the heights of heaven and gave him a name that is above every other name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

 

How am I to understand "though he was God","appeared in human form"? Is this a problem with the translation that you so often quote? What gives? At the name of Jesus every knee will bow in the heaven, on earth and under the earth? And we are supposed to believe that the early Christians didn't believe in a Jesus that is a Lord to be worshipped?

 

Colossians chapter 1

 

16 Christ is the one through whom God created everything in heaven and earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can't see -- kings, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities. Everything has been created through him and for him.

 

Really God made everything in heaven and the earth through Christ? Remember Gospel of John? Arius?

 

Colossians chapter 2

 

9 For in Christ the fullness of God lives in a human body, 10 and you are complete through your union with Christ. He is the Lord over every ruler and authority in the universe. 11

 

The fullness of God lives in Christ in a human body? Let me guess? It's the translation, right? But how come it's your favorite translation? Didn't know that Jesus is the Lord over every ruler and authority in the universe? Again, we are supposed to believe that early Christians didn't consider Jesus to be a Lord?

 

Romans chapter 9

 

5 Their ancestors were great people of God, and Christ himself was a Jew as far as his human nature is concerned. And he is God, who rules over everything and is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.

 

As far as his human nature is concerned... It couldn't be the Trinity and Incarnation, could it?

 

Hebrews chapter 1

 

1 Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. 2 But now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he made the universe and everything in it. 3 The Son reflects God's own glory, and everything about him represents God exactly. He sustains the universe by the mighty power of his command. After he died to cleanse us from the stain of sin, he sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God of heaven. 4 This shows that God's Son is far greater than the angels, just as the name God gave him is far greater than their names. 5 For God never said to any angel what he said to Jesus: "You are my Son. Today I have become your Father. " And again God said, "I will be his Father, and he will be my Son." 6 And then, when he presented his honored Son to the world, God said, "Let all the angels of God worship him." 7 God calls his angels "messengers swift as the wind, and servants made of flaming fire." 8 But to his Son he says, "Your throne, O God, endures forever and ever. Your royal power is expressed in righteousness. 9

 

Again we see this concept of everything being created through Jesus. Jesus sits at the right hand of God in Heaven? God tells His Angels to worship Jesus? And addresses His Son as "O, God"?

 

But we know that there is only one God, the Father, who created everything, and we exist for him. And there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom God made everything and through whom we have been given life. 1 Corinthians 8:6

 

Again this concept of everything being created through Jesus.

 

Ephesians Chapter 4

 

5 There is only one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 and there is only one God and Father, who is over us all and in us all and living through us all. 7 However, he has given each one of us a special gift according to the generosity of Christ. 8 That is why the Scriptures say, "When he ascended to the heights, he led a crowd of captives and gave gifts to his people." 9 Notice that it says "he ascended." This means that Christ first came down to the lowly world in which we live. 10 The same one who came down is the one who ascended higher than all the heavens, so that his rule might fill the entire universe

 

Again this talk of an all-ruling Jesus.

 

Titus chapter 2

 

And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with self-control, right conduct, and devotion to God, 13 while we look forward to that wonderful event when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed.

 

Let's see what Samantha has to say.

 

Do you think that these passages reflect early Christianity or not?

 

It's quite obvious that with passages like this being the mainstream in Christianity that the transition to full-fledged Trinitarianism was quite easy, don't you think?

 

"Hey, if all things were created through Jesus, Angels worship him, he is Lord over everything, everything was created for him, then why not make him God also?" Besides, some of these passages are quite explicit that Jesus is God.

 

Are you going to go for the arguement "these are not Jesus' words"? "They are not Jesus' words, they are Paul's!". "They are not Scripture!" Either way it is quite obvious that they had an deep impact on early Christian communities.

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Hi Younes,

 

You cherry-pick the things you dislike and roll with them without double-checking your facts. Really, it’s apparent that you are unwilling to learn, you just want to attack and your cannon balls are filled with misconceptions. You think you know everything when in actuality you’ve only begun to touch the surface. It’s clear you only believe what you want to believe and read only that which affirms your objections and misconceptions. The Gospels did not originate from Trinitarians but they were later preserved by them, yes. But again,

 

1.) Why can the Trinity be refuted using the Bible (including the Gospels)?

2.) Why do Trinitarians need additional doctrines in order to understand or describe the trinity?

3.) Why is the trinity not described in the Bible as it is in the doctrine Trinitarians subscribe to?

4.) If it’s as clearly stated in the Bible as you say, why are there so many theories to the trinity?

5.) If Christianity has always been a Trinitarian faith, why do the Gospels prove that Jesus’ followers and disciples were not Trinitarians during his lifetime and why is it a historical fact that they remained Unitarians after his death?

 

If your know-it-all attitude was justified and you’d really studied the Gospels, you would already know the answers to these questions and I would not have to undeceive you. But again, it’s clear you only believe what you want to believe.

 

We know that these theologians quoted from the Gospels, but you forget that (1) they drew from the Gospels to interpret the verses and theologise so if the Trinity were apparent in the Gospels as you claim, they would not have had to formulate it; (2) they were from Roman and Greek backgrounds (monotheistic cultures) unlike the ethnically Jewish Christians who were Unitarian; (3) You will not find the content of their polemics in the Bible, only the quotes they used.

 

Let me remind you of these facts because it seems you did not read them, unless you are deliberately ignoring them:

 

". . . scholars generally agree that there is no doctrine of the trinity as such in either the Old Testament or the New Testament." - The HarperCollins Encyclopedia of Catholicism 1995

 

"Christianity derived from Judaism and Judaism was strictly Unitarian (believing in one God). The road which led from Jerusalem to Nicea was scarcely a straight one. Fourth century trinitarianism did not reflect accurately early Christian teaching regarding the nature of God; it was, on the contrary, a deviation from this teaching." - The Encyclopedia Americana 1956

 

"The formulation 'one God in three persons' was not solidly established, certainly not fully assimilated into Christian life and its profession of faith, prior to the end of the 4th century." - The New Catholic Encyclopedia 1967

 

"Neither the word trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as such, appears in the New Testament, nor did Jesus and his followers intend to contradict the Shema in the Old Testament: 'Hear, O israel: The Lord our God is one Lord' (Deut. 6:4). . . The doctrine developed gradually over several centuries and through many controversies. . . . By the end of the 4th century . . . the doctrine of the trinity took substantially the form it has maintained ever since." - The New Encyclopedia Britannica 1976

 

"The trinity of God is defined by the church as the belief that in God are three persons who subsist in one nature. The belief as so defined was reached only in the 4th and 5th centuries AD and hence is not explicitly and formally a biblical belief." - Dictionary of The Bible 1995 John L. Mckenzie

 

"The Bible lacks the express declaration that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are of equal essence. [said Karl Barth]" - The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology 1976

 

 

Since there is consensus among Biblical scholars that the doctrine of the Trinity is not in the Bible, who are you to say it is? I’m not trying to be mean or rude, but my point is that you claim to have so much knowledge based upon what you’ve read thus far, even though we’ve discovered that there are many things you don’t know and many things that you don’t understand. Why do you believe you are more qualified than Biblical scholars who have PhD’s and whatnot and have thoroughly probed the Gospels in all their existing forms (i.e. the extant manuscripts, Biblical manuscripts in Greek, Aramaic and Latin, etc.) and have also studied the culture and history? Why do you believe you are qualified to make such a statement and claim that the Trinitarians inserted their beliefs into the Gospels? Why do you ignore the textual and historical evidence? Please answer these questions because I’d really like to know the answer.

 

Perhaps if a Muslim scholar tells you that the Trinity is not in the Bible you will believe it:

 

Indeed, when we look at the historical facts, it can be seen that the Trinity is a myth which entered into Christianity at a later date.

 

Monotheism: The Essence of Christianity

 

Christianity was originally born among the Jews living in Palestine. All of those around and who believed in Jesus were Jews and lived according to the laws of Moses. The most fundamental feature of Judaism was monotheism, the belief in one God.

 

However, Christianity began to grow rather different after the ascension of Jesus into the presence of God and with its spread from the Jewish world into the pagan one. Monotheistic belief, the essence of the law of Moses, underwent a great change and Christians began regarding Jesus as divine.

 

The belief in the "Trinity" emerged at the end of this process. This concept describes, for Christians, a three-way belief in God as "Father, Son and Holy Ghost." The Trinity is one of the fundamental conditions of faith for traditional Christians. The belief in the Trinity regards our Almighty Lord from a superstitious perspective and is a mistaken concept which ascribes divinity to Jesus, sent by God to mankind as a prophet. Despite harboring a great many inconsistencies and being totally incompatible with monotheism, it occupies a central role in the Christians' corrupted system of beliefs. Someone who does not believe in the Trinity, and therefore that Jesus is the son of God, is not regarded as a real Christian by the supporters of traditional Christianity.

 

The most noteworthy point on this subject is that there is no trace of the belief in the Trinity, portrayed as the foundation of Christianity, anywhere in the Bible. It appears neither in the Old Testament, the holy book of the Jews, nor in the New Testament, the Christian sacred text. Belief in the Trinity depends on the interpretation of a number of statements in the Bible, and the word itself was first used by Theophilus of Antioch at the end of the 2nd century. This belief became fully incorporated into Christian belief long after that. For that reason, Bible researchers and those opposed to the Trinity concentrate on the questions of "Should not belief in the Trinity, described as the basis of the Christian religion, be openly stated in the Bible?" and "If this belief were really true, should not Jesus have openly spoken of it?" The answer they provide is clear: No belief which does not appear openly in the Bible and was thus unknown to the first Christians can form the basis of Christianity. This is nothing more than a myth which formed after Jesus and under the influence of Greek culture. It has nothing to do with the essence of Christianity.

 

Harun Yahyah (you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_us1.harunyahya(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/Detail/T/EDCRFV/productId/8370)

 

I first read this sometime last year, and I respect Harun Yayah because he is interested in checking his facts rather than just looking to affirm misconceptions and objections you have been doing, Younes. He makes it very clear that Monotheism is enshrined in the Gospels.

 

It will take a bit of research for you to understand why scholars agree that it’s not in the Bible, but I hope now you will accept that you’ve been mistaken and see that your claim that Trinitarians distorted the Gospel manuscripts is totally unfounded since the Trinity is not in the Gospels! You also need to realise that what you read in certain Bible translations (even the NIV, New King James Version or New Living Translation) online or in book form may not accurately represent what the manuscripts say in their original language and.

 

Call the Trinity a Biblical belief and fact, and say that Christianity is by nature a Trinitarian faith and has always been that way when you can bring irrefutable evidence and when you can prove that all the scholars and historians who know more than you do - including Harun Yayah - are liars. I’d really like to see that.

 

Peace. [No smiley face since they annoy you so much.]

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I am sorry but it is clear that the council of Nicea represented the mainstream because they came from all over the world representing their various communities. Ebionites, Jewish Christians and Gnostics never were mainstream, they were always fringe groups except maybe right at the beggining but they became very, very quickly fringe groups as Christianity spread and thus they were irrelevant.

 

Jewish Christians were mainstream in the beginning and Jesus’ disciples were among them. They were the first Christians before they evangelised the Greeks, etc. who then turned Christianity into a Trinitarian faith and through their dominance in numbers (and later with the Roman Empire) were able to declare all else heretical. I already told you that they sidelined the other sects during this convention and subsequent ones. You don’t know your facts.

 

You mean all that talk about Aramaic, Miltha and comparing it to the concept of Jesus, peace be upon him, having the title Kalimatu Allah in Islam? Save your breath. I found it thoroughly unconvincing the first time. Just another example of you twisting things to suit your preconcieved notions and ignoring context.

 

But read this:

 

(you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_en.wikipedia(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/wiki/Trinity#Jesus_as_God"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_en.wikipedia(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/wiki/Trinity#Jesus_as_God[/url]

 

I wonder why the Gospel of John is the first thing that is quoted in that article? It couldn't be because the Gospel of John is trying to portray Jesus as a deity?

 

Easy. People who believe this is the ‘logos’ clearly forget that John the Evangelist was an Aramaic speaker like Jesus and have adopted the ‘Logos’ and Trinity doctrines. The doctrine is derived from this passage, but again it came from theologians who referred to the Greek texts and did not understand the Aramaic context and were keen to espouse a belief which was rooted in polytheism. Even the Greek does not say that Jesus was the ‘only begotten’. Perhaps if you conducted unbiased research you would find the answers to all of your objections, but it’s evident you are not interested in context and facts, rather you want to argue for the trinity because you want to have a beef with Christianity. You speak as if you’re an expert, but you don’t know what you are talking about and you are unwilling to hear the facts from the experts! (I don’t claim to be an expert, but you would find the truth from experts if you sought it.) Just shows how futile discussing this with you is.

 

Are you an expert in Aramaic? I get my info from people who know Aramaic (and I am learning it too) so the fact that you are unconvinced really does not concern me since you have made numerous baseless claims in ignorance. Again, if Jesus created the universe, would he not have said that?

 

Unitarians also interpret it as follows:

 

John 1:1 - The contention with this verse is the distinction between God and the Logos (or "the Word"), and yet the author says "and the Logos was God". It is argued by some nontrinitarians that the Greek term theou should be given as "and the Logos was a god" (with theou being a noun), so that the Logos would be considered to be the pre-existent Jesus, who is wholly distinct from God. Alternately, others argue that the Greek should be translated as "and the Logos was divine" (with theou being an adjective), and the Logos being interpreted as God's "plan" or "reasoning" for salvation. Thus, when "the Logos became flesh" in John 1:14, it is not interpreted to be a pre-existent Jesus being incarnated, but rather the "plan" of God being manifested in the birth of the man Jesus. - WIKIPEDIA

 

You only look for want you want to see, rather than the full picture but then you claim to know everything. Wow!

 

Let's see what Samantha has to say.

 

Do you think that these passages reflect early Christianity or not?

 

It's quite obvious that with passages like this being the mainstream in Christianity that the transition to full-fledged Trinitarianism was quite easy, don't you think?

 

"Hey, if all things were created through Jesus, Angels worship him, he is Lord over everything, everything was created for him, then why not make him God also?" Besides, some of these passages are quite explicit that Jesus is God.

 

Are you going to go for the arguement "these are not Jesus' words"? "They are not Jesus' words, they are Paul's!". "They are not Scripture!" Either way it is quite obvious that they had an deep impact on early Christian communities.

 

"You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder." (James 2:19)

 

The Epistle of James chapter 1:13 reads, “For God cannot be tempted by evil,” and we know Jesus was tempted, therefore he is not God.

 

"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" (1 Tim. 2:5)

(Jesus said in John 16:26 that he is not an intercessor, though the nature of mediator in the above context is open to interpretation.)

 

“For everything God created is good,” 1 Timothy 4:4

 

“We know that an idol is nothing at all in the world and that there is no God but one.” 1 Corinthians 8:4

 

“...since there is only one God,” Romans 3:30

 

Jesus said, “And this is the way to Eternal Life – to know you, the one true God...” John 17:3

If Jesus was God as part of a Trinity, he would have said “us” but this is not the case.

 

There are others, but I don’t have the time right now. Some Epistles contradict themselves because there are also verses which are Unitarian. But even so, the trinity is not clear from the New Testament as a whole. Trinitarians still need their doctrines to back it up.

 

Like many nontrinitarians, I believe in sola scriptura (scripture only). The Epistles are not the words of Jesus, you are quite right, so why should I revere them especially when they are so mangled? Jesus’ example and teachings suffice, and there are clear instances where ‘Paul’ contradicts Jesus, so am I to follow ‘Paul’ or Jesus? Of course, it begins and ends with Jesus because he is the teacher, not ‘Paul’. These Epistles were not as widely used as the Gospels and frankly I can’t tell you much about their preservation because I’m only interested in the Gospels. Is it not interesting that these things appear in the Epistles yet are completely absent from the Gospels which were widely used? They could get away with forging the Epistles to justify the trinity later because they were not widely used from the beginning unlike the Gospels which were read publicly and memorised. Is it not interesting that so many of ‘Paul’s writings make it into the Bible after the Nicene convention on the trinity, and so many of them espouse the trinity? I know there is an entire science dedicated to authenticating a hadeeth, but obviously one which blatantly contradicts the Quran is obviously a fake, isn’t it?

 

They don't represent early Christianity because there is evidence from the Gospels and history which prove this, and there is even mention of heresies which were around in the second century. Perhaps if you conducted thorough research, you would know that some of these Epistles are disputed, but we know you're not interested in the truth, only your misconceptions.

 

Again, historians agree that Jesus’ first followers (ethnically Jewish Christians, though there were Gentile Christians who did not practice the Jewish laws among them) were Unitarian, and from what we read in the Gospels, so were Jesus’ disciples and his followers. The Trinity began among the Greeks and grew but Unitarian Christians were still around.

 

You yourself cannot even prove the Trinity from the Gospels (which we know originated from Jesus’ disciples who were Unitarian) which is why you refer to the Epistles. Why do you argue for the trinity so aggressively? What do you need to prove?

 

Yes, Western (Greek and Roman) Christians who merged their polytheistic ideas into Christianity definitely had a great impact on doctrinal level but not on the Gospels.

 

Please see my comment further up. I’ll address the rest later.

 

:sl:

Edited by samantha-g

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Prophet Jesus called his people to worship Allah without partners. He never claimed divinity for himself, nor did he ever ask to be worshipped. Jesus never claimed to be God, or asked his people to worship him. In fact, Jesus told his followers to pray to God as he himself did. And our logic would tell us that someone who prays to God cannot possibly be God himself. The two has to be separate entities – one is the worshipper and the other is the object of worship. --> an excerpt taken from (you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yettowards-understanding-Islam(contact admin if its a beneficial link)"]TOWARDS UNDERSTANDING Islam[/url]

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More John 1 Unitarian translation:

 

In unitarian Christology there are other interpretations of John 1:1. In the commentaries on John ch.1 by Lelio Sozzini (Zurich, c.1559) and his nephew Fausto Sozzini (Lyons, c.1562) the "word" being "made flesh" is taken as a reference to the virgin birth, and not to the personal pre-existence of Christ. The passages in the New Testament referring to the Logos were explained by Fausto Sozzini as relating to the foreknown work of Christ as the author of the new creation, not as relating to the "old" Genesis creation. Fausto Sozzini aimed to "completely de-Platonize" the reading of John 1:1-15.

 

From Wikipedia.

 

The way Trinitarians interpret it and how it is translated in some Bibles really has to do with doctrines. Younes, you can't claim that something is a certainty unless you have researched it thoroughly.

 

I'd really like to hear your response to my previous questions. (Please see my previous comments.)

Edited by samantha-g

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Perhaps if a Muslim scholar tells you that the Trinity is not in the Bible you will believe it:

 

Haruan Yahya is not a Muslim scholar. He is not a Shaykh, he doesn't have an 'Ijazah. In fact, Harun Yahya twists a lot of the verses of the Qur'an to make them sound Prophetical or sientific and I'd say he is the worst person when it comes to context. Him distorting Qur'anic verses and ignoring the Qur'anic context is worse than what he does with the Bible. He is the worst person when it comes to context, worse than you.

 

Seriously look at these distortions. Read the PLANE TECHNOLOGY, IMAGE TRANSMISSION, SMELL TRANSFERENCE, THE USE OF ELECTRICITY, ARTESIAN WELLS, THE ARMY-ANT IN TECHNOLOGY sections. It is obvious from the context that those verses that are quoted in those sections are not predictions of any sort but stories of what happened in the past. These "predictions" are the most far-fetched things that I have ever seen - and I am not exaggerating - even more far-fatched than you twisting Biblical verses to suit your preconcieved notions and ignoring context.

 

(you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetharunyahya(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/miracles_of_the_quran_p2_01.php#11"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetharunyahya(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/miracles_of_the_quran_p2_01.php#11[/url]

 

And this the "Muslim scholar" whom you picked to make a point? When he is the worst person when it comes to context. Seriously, I think he is probably the worst ever and I am not even exaggerating. He is a liar, but I don't consider him to be a liar because he believes that the Gospels are monotheist , he is a liar because he lies about the Qur'an. It's no wonder you picked him as an example, like-minded people do think aike. This is most pathetic attempt of trying to appeal to authority.

 

Peace. [No smiley face since they annoy you so much.]

 

 

Well, to be totally honest, I am not annoyed in the least by emoticons. :sl:

 

This discussion has come to an end. The things that you accused me of don't apply to me, rather they apply to you. Not only do they apply to you - they characterize you.

 

In conclusion, everything that needed to be said has been said. I am not going to answer your last replies, Samantha, because I'll just end up repeating myself for the most part and a lot of the points you bring up are quite irrelevant. On some points I actually agreed with you, but it is not suprising that you fail to pick up on that based on the level of understanding, or lack thereof,, that you have displayed in this thread and other threads. I'll let everybody come to their own conclusions and let them decide whether they believe that the Gospels, the rest of the NT writings and the early communities taught and believed that Jesus is a Lord that is to be worshipped and a deity, or not.

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I'll let everybody come to their own conclusions and let them decide whether they believe that the Gospels, the rest of the NT writings and the early communities taught and believed that Jesus is a Lord that is to be worshipped and a deity, or not.

 

I agree with you bro. That's wise of you. Sometimes the best remedy is to give people time. :sl:

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This discussion has come to an end. The things that you accused me of don't apply to me, rather they apply to you. Not only do they apply to you - they characterize you.

 

In conclusion, everything that needed to be said has been said. I am not going to answer your last replies, Samantha, because I'll just end up repeating myself for the most part and a lot of the points you bring up are quite irrelevant. On some points I actually agreed with you, but it is not suprising that you fail to pick up on that based on the level of understanding, or lack thereof,, that you have displayed in this thread and other threads. I'll let everybody come to their own conclusions and let them decide whether they believe that the Gospels, the rest of the NT writings and the early communities taught and believed that Jesus is a Lord that is to be worshipped and a deity, or not.

 

I’m more than happy to end this discussion because I realised yesterday how futile it is since you still deny some of the facts. It’s just ridiculous. Of course, I see where we do agree, but you seem unable to accept some of the facts I have presented to you and you fail to produce strong evidence to back up some of your claims because you are seemingly unaware that some of them are baseless.

 

I asked you why you think you are more qualified than Biblical scholars who agree that the belief in the trinity is not a Biblical doctrine and in fact came from non-Jewish Christians who were then able to sideline Nontrinitarians (and I made it clear that I was not trying to be mean to you) but you can’t answer me. I asked you to bring me irrefutable evidence that the trinity is a Biblical doctrine and that Christianity is in truth a Trinitarian faith but you can't do that either. You only know one side of the story but you refuse to hear the rest of it when it is presented to you. I wonder why? I did not start this topic to debate the trinity with you, I just wanted to hear what you guys would say to my friend. You are the one who came with your unjustified assail on Christianity which was based in ignorance and incomplete information. Anyone can read this and see between the two of us who has been denying the facts based upon their misconceptions and their lack of Biblical knowledge (though they claim to have studied the Bible). I don’t need to win and make this an expose like you, nor do I expect to convince you of the facts at this point but I felt it was necessary to present them to you so you. Rock on with your misconceptions. Hope you are happy! :sl: And, thanks for clearing up the confusion with Harun.

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