Is the Trinity the same as the Godhead of the bible?
below treatise extracted from
detailed opinion - further down this page
A NEW GOD?
Could it be that many Seventh-day Adventists are ignorantly worshipping the same God they are told not to worship in the third angel's message, the god of the beast power? Are we calling the true Godhead by the name of a false god? What god are we worshipping today? (Note: this is not saying the SDA church is Babylon, but that, like Israel of old, it could be worshipping a false god.)
"How long halt ye between two opinions? If the LORD be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him." 1 Kings 18:21. Are these words of Elijah applicable today?
"Godhead" is the term used in the NT that describes the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The word for "God" in the OT Hebrew is "Elohim". It means "Gods" in the plural. This is clearly seen in the following Scriptures:
Gen. 1:26: "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness."
Gen. 11:7: "Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech."
Isaiah 6:8: "Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?"
These verses show that the Godhead consists of more than one divine Being. There is a unity in the Godhead. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit work together in loving harmony.
THE FATHER, SON, AND HOLY SPIRIT
ARE EACH ETERNAL
THE FATHER: Psalms 106:48: "Blessed be the LORD God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting: and let all the people say, Amen."
1.Timothy 1:17: "Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen."
These verses tell us that God the Father is Eternal. If He is eternal, then He has no beginning, no end.
THE SON: Micah 5:2: "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting."
John 1:1,2,14: "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. 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth."
Matthew 1:23: "Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us."
These Scriptures show us that Jesus is God. Being God Jesus is Eternal. If He is eternal, then He has no beginning, no end.
THE HOLY SPIRIT: Acts 5:3,4: "But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?" "Why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God."
Hebrews 9:14: "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?"
These verses tell us that the Holy Spirit is Eternal. If He is eternal, then He has no beginning, no end.
THE GODHEAD, AN ETERNAL HEAVENLY TRIO
Thus, the Godhead is composed of three eternal (no beginning, no end) Beings: The Father, The Son, The Holy Spirit.
THE GODHEAD IS COMPOSED OF
THREE SEPARATE, DISTINCT, ETERNAL BEINGS
1) 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 (the Father), saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."
Here we see Jesus on the Earth itself, the Holy Spirit in the sky above the earth, and the Father in Heaven above both the earth and sky. The Bible shows us three distinct Beings.
2) 1.Corinthians 12:4-6: "Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all."
According to their office, the Father does things that the Son does not do, and visa versa. The Holy Spirit does things that neither the Father nor the Son do. Yet all three are in "one accord" and we need all three for our salvation.
3) Isaiah 48:16: "Come ye near unto me, hear ye this; I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; from the time that it was, there am I: and now the Lord GOD, and his Spirit, hath sent Me." Here the Heavenly Trio is clearly seen in the Old Testament. But they are more clearly seen in the NT as the next four verses show:
4) 2.Corinthians 13:14: "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen."
5) 1.Peter 1:2: "Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied."
6) Revelation 1:4,5: "Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come (the Father); and from the seven Spirits (the Holy Spirit) which are before his throne; And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth."
7) Matt. 28:19: "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost."
The Godhead is composed of three separate, DISTINCT, eternal Beings.
THE ABOVE IS NOT THE TRINITY
Many will agree with the above statements about the
Godhead and think that they are describing the Trinity. But
the Trinity is a strangely different concept about God.
DEFINITION OF THE TRINITY
The term "Trinity" is nowhere found in the Bible and is thus an unscriptural term. The theological definition of the Trinity was painstakingly arrived at in the creeds formulated by the Roman Catholic Church. The term as defined by the Roman Catholic Church is subscribed to by all Protestant churches who teach the Trinity. Those who developed the term have the sole right to define the term.
The catholic definition for Trinity:
(a) God is One yet at the same time He is three Persons. (The word "Persons" does not mean what we think it means. See point "e".)
(b) The One means one nature, essence, or being, which or who is essentially the Father.
(c) God and His nature are synonymous.
(d) The Oneness is not generic based on likeness, but rather is numeric based on sameness.
(e) "Three persons" does not mean "persons" as we normally understand the word, but means three expressions, extensions, manifestations, or modes otherwise theologically called hypostases.
(f) The Person of the Son is begotten from the Father by an eternal generation, a never ending process. This is compared to the rays of the sun that are never separated from the sun itself.
(g) The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father through the Son by a mediate procession.
(h) The Three Persons are truly distinct from each other by virtue of the processes of filiation and spiration, which however, does not make them separate Entities with independent self consciousness.
(i) The Father is neither begotten nor does He proceed from anyone else since He is the Source from which all else flows.
(j) Although the Son and the Spirit are derived from the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are co-eternal and co-equal with the Father. (Notice: these "co-words" are code-words for the Trinity.)
(k) The theological word which explains the Trinity is consubstantiality (homoousios), which means more than one person inhabit the same substance without division or separation.
ORIGIN OF THE TRINITY CONCEPT
The term and concept of the Trinity, first introduced by theologians in the third century, was catapulted into the limelight at the Council of Nicaea, 325 AD. The Emperor Constantine gathered the religious leaders of the world in an effort to achieve unity on the nature of the Godhead. Instead it caused a controversy which has never ceased. We quote now from Truth Triumphant, by SDA theologian Benjamin Wilkinson.
"Assembling under the sanction of a united church and state, that famous gathering commanded the submission of believers to new doctrines. The burning question of the decades succeeding the Council of Nicaea was how to state the relations of the Three Persons of the Godhead: Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The Council had decided, and the papacy had appropriated the decision as its own. The personalities of the Trinity were not confounded, and the substance was not divided. The Roman clergy claimed that Christianity had found in the Greek word homoousios (in English, consubstantiality) an appropriate term to express this relationship.
"Then the papal party proceeded to call those who would not subscribe to this teaching, Arians, while they took to themselves the title of Trinitarians. An erroneous charge was circulated that all who were called Arians believed that Christ was a created being. This stirred up the indignation of those who were not guilty of the charge.
"It will be interesting to examine for a moment this word, this term, which has split many a church and has caused many a sincere Christian to be burned at the stake. In English the word is 'consubstantial,' connoting that more than one person inhabit the same substance without division or separation. The original term in Greek is homoousios, from homos, meaning 'identical,' and ousia, the word for 'being.'
"However, a great trouble arose, since there are two terms in Greek of historical fame. The first homos, meaning 'identical,' and the second, homoios, meaning 'similar' or 'like unto,' had both of them a stormy history. The spelling of these words is much alike. The difference in meaning, when applied to the Godhead, is bewildering to simple-hearted believers. Nevertheless, those who would think in terms of homoiousian, or 'similar,' instead of homoousian, or 'identical,' were promptly labeled as heretics and Arians by the clergy." Wilkinson, Truth Triumphant, pp. 91,92.
The papal view of the Trinity was forced upon the world. The trinity doctrine became the centerpiece of its whole theology. This apostasy occurred during the Pergamos church period of Revelation 2, the time of the "falling away" that Paul prophesied would come (2 Thess. 2:3) when the church (Balaam) would join itself with the state
(Balac), sell off the truth for worldly fame, power, and riches, and allow false pagan doctrines to march into the "elevated" church. Thus, the false Trinity concept originated in the very time period that the original great church apostasy was prophesied to take place.
THE TRINITY ILLUSTRATED
The following illustration of the Trinity is taken from "My Catholic Faith", by Father Louis LaRavoire Morrow, p. 32. It has been a very popular catechism among Roman Catholics.
"And the Catholic Faith is this, that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in unity. Neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Substance.... But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of The Holy Ghost is one, the glory equal, the majesty co-eternal.... The Father is made of none, neither created, nor begotten. The
Son is of the Father alone: not made, nor created, but begotten. The Holy Ghost is of the Father and the Son: not made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.... And in this Trinity nothing is afore or after, nothing is greater or less, but the whole three Persons are co-eternal together, and co-equal" (From the Athanasian Creed).
This illustration shows why the concept of the Trinity is false – (here) the Son and Holy Spirit have a beginning. Also, since they have the same substance, they are not eternal. Instead, they are strangely labeled as "co-eternal".
HOW THE "PERSONS" OF THE TRINITY HAVE DISTINCT ORIGINS
Quoting from My Catholic Faith, p. 31:
"1. This is the simplest way by which the distinct origin of each Divine Person has been explained: God is a spirit, and the first act of a Spirit is to know and understand God, knowing Himself from all eternity brings forth the knowledge of Himself, His own image. This was not a mere thought, as our knowledge of ourselves would be, but a Living Person, of the same substance and one with the Father. This is God the Son. Thus the Father 'begets' the Son, the Divine Word, the Wisdom of the Father….
"2. God the Father, seeing His own Image in the Son, loves the Son; and God the Son loves the Father from all eternity. Each loves the other, because each sees in the other the Infinity of the Godhead, the beauty of Divinity, the Supreme Truth of God. The two Persons loving each other do not just have a thought, as human beings would have, but from Their mutual love is breathed forth, as it were, a Living Person, one with Them, and of Their own substance. This is God the Holy Ghost. Thus the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Love, 'proceeds' from the Father and the Son.
"3. But we are not to suppose that once God the Father begot the Son and now no longer does so, nor that once the love of the Father and the Son for each other breathed forth the Holy Ghost, but now no longer does. These truths are eternal, everlasting.
"God the Father eternally knows Himself, and continues to know Himself, and thus continues to bring forth the Son. God the Father and God the Son continue to love each other, and their delight in each other continues to bring forth the Spirit of Love, God the Holy Ghost. In a similar way, fire has light and color. As long as there is fire, it continues to produce light. As long as there is fire with light, there is produced color. But all three exist at one and the same time."
This shocking description of the origin of the Godhead is even more graphically described in the official Catholic Encyclopedia. Is it any wonder that such a philosophical idol, the Trinity concept, would breed so much sexual misconduct within the churches that subscribe to it.
* Father, Son, and Holy Spirit all of one substance.
* Three "Persons" are really not persons, but "manifestations" of one mega-god.
* The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are not "united", but "triune."
* Not eternal, but "co-eternal".
* The Son, and Holy Spirit not self-existent.
* The one mega-God is a spirit without body or parts.
LET THERE BE NO CONFUSION
The terms "Trinity" and "triune" have long been established for centuries to describe a false concept of God. Those who recoil from such a concept should never use the term "trinity", "triune", or "co-eternal" as a label for the true concept of the Godhead.
When SDA church leaders use these "Trinity" code-words to describe the God we worship, Christians from other fallen denominations (see 2nd Angel's message) think that we worship the same God they do – the Catholic concept. SDA leaders are paid theologians and must know this. We will see that Gen. Conf. leaders actually do worship the Trinity. But there is confusion among the membership. Many are not aware of the precise theological definition of the "Trinity" and believe that the Godhead and the Trinity are the same concepts. Many strenuously hold onto the term, not knowing that they are unwittingly subscribing to a false God.
The Holy Spirit blessed the Bible writers, and Ellen White, and the SDA pioneers to never use the terms "trinity", "triune", "co-equal", or "co-eternal".
THE GODHEAD IS NOT A THREE-IN-ONE GOD
1) Hebrews 1:8,9: "But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows."
Here the Father Himself is calling His Son, "O God." This passage also declares God the Father to be the God of Jesus Christ as well when it says, "therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness…" One God is speaking to the other God, saying that "thy God" has anointed Him, His Son! This passage declares plainly there is more than ONE God in the Godhead thereby disproving the Trinity doctrine.
2) 1 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."
Does this mean there is one single God, or that they are in one accord, in unity?
Let Jesus clarify: "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." John 17:20-23.
"The unity that exists between Christ and His disciples does not destroy the personality of either. They are one in purpose, in mind, in character, but not in person. It is thus that God and Christ are one." Ministry of Healing, 422.
3) Deuteronomy 6:4: "The Lord our God is one Lord."
The word for "God" is "Elohiym," Which means "Gods" plural. The word for "one" is the Hebrew, "echad," which means a oneness in unity. It is the same unity as is seen in Genesis 2:24: "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh."
When the Bible says that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are "one", and when Jesus says that "I and My Father are one," it simply means that they are perfectly united – each is willing to give themselves totally to save us from sin. All heaven is poured out in the plan of salvation. They are so like each other in their purpose, character, and love, that Jesus could say, "He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father." Jn. 14:9. Their heart is the same. And They work to change man from the heart.
4) God the Father is above all. 1Cor. 15:27,28: "For he hath put all things under his (Christ's) feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all." This verse would not make sense if the Father and the Son were of "one essence" or the same substance.
5) Matt. 27:46: "And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, 'My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?'" If separation between the Father and the Son is impossible as the Trinity doctrine teaches, what happened here?
6) Matthew 12:32: "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…" This would not be true if they were both the same God, but they are distinct Beings with different responsibilities in the plan of salvation.
7) John 14:1: "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me." There are two distinct divine Beings to believe in. Indwelling the believer, the Holy Spirit – the 3rd Person of the Godhead – gives the power of grace to believe.
8) Matthew 26:39: "And he went a little farther, 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."
God had a will, and Jesus had a will. They were two separate distinct Beings.
9) Philippians. 2:6: "Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God." Jesus was in the form of God, and was equal to God the Father. The true Godhead wants a spiritual harmony, not a physical sameness. Thus, Phil. 2:5: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus."
10) Romans 15:16: "That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost." The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit work together to save us.
THE GODHEAD CREATED MAN IN THEIR IMAGE
If God is a three-in-one god, then man, being created in the image of God, would also be three persons in one. Some may ask, "But isn't man a three-fold creature – physical, mental, and spiritual?"
Let SDA pioneer, R.J. Cottrell answer that question:
"I might say that a tree consists of body, bark and leaves, and no one perhaps would dispute it. But if I should affirm that each tree consists of three trees, the assertion would possibly be doubted by some. But if all admitted that one tree is three trees, I might then affirm that there were ninety trees in my orchard, when no one could count but thirty. I might then proceed and say, I have ninety trees in my orchard, and as each tree consists of three trees, I have two hundred and seventy. So if one man is three men, you may multiply him by three as often as you please. But if it takes body, soul and spirit to make one perfect, living man; then separate these, and the man is unmade." Review & Herald, Nov. 19, 1857.
THE SDA PIONEERS ADAMANT AGAINST THE TRINITY
The SDA pioneers did not try to explain the exact nature of the Godhead, but they did wholeheartedly reject the Trinity concept.
Joseph Bates wrote: "Respecting the trinity, I concluded that it was an impossibility for me to believe that the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, was also the Almighty God, the Father, one and the same being. I said to my father, 'If you can convince me that we are one in this sense, that you are my father, and I your son; and also that I am your father, and you my son, then I can believe in the trinity.'" (Joseph Bates, 1868, The Autobiography Of Elder Joseph Bates, p.204.)
R.J. Cotrell wrote: "To hold the doctrine of the Trinity is not so much an evidence of evil intention as of intoxication from that wine of which all the nations have drunk. The fact that this was one of the leading doctrines, if not the very chief, upon which the bishop of Rome was exalted to popedom, does not say much in its favor." Review & Herald, July 6, 1869.
Listen now to what
James White wrote: "As fundamental errors, we might class with this counterfeit Sabbath other errors which Protestants have brought away from the Catholic church, such as sprinkling for baptism, the trinity, the consciousness of the dead and eternal life in misery. The mass who have held these fundamental errors, have doubtless done it ignorantly, but can it be supposed that the church of Christ will carry along with her these errors till the judgment scenes burst upon the world? We think not." Review & Herald, September 12, 1854.
James White again: "Martin Luther, and other reformers, arose in the strength of God, and with the Word and Spirit, made mighty strides in the Reformation. The greatest fault we can find in the Reformation is, the Reformers stopped reforming. Had they gone on, and onward, till they had left the last vestige of Papacy behind, such as natural immortality, sprinkling, the trinity, and Sunday keeping, the church would now be free from her unscriptural errors." James White, Review & Herald, February 7, 1856.
James White, yet again: "The inexplicable Trinity that makes the Godhead three in one and one in three, is bad enough; but that ultra Unitarianism that makes Christ inferior to the Father is worse. Did God say to an inferior, 'Let us make man in our image?'" James White, Review & Herald, November 29, 1877.
None of the SDA pioneers believed in the Trinity. Because of this fact, and because of what has happened in the modern SDA church (as we will see), Gen. Conf. theologian George Knight wrote: "Most of the founders of Seventh-day Adventism would not be able to join the church today if they had to subscribe to the denomination's Fundamental Beliefs. More specifically, most would not be able to agree to belief number 2, which deals with the doctrine of the trinity." (Ministry, Oct., 1993, p. 10).
ELLEN WHITE NEVER USES THE TERM "TRINITY."
God the Father has spoken to His people through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit on prophets. Heb. 1:1; 2 Pet. 1:21. Believing that Ellen White fulfills the qualifications of a true prophet, this makes Ellen G. White a spokesperson for the Godhead to the church. Let the Holy Spirit speak to us now through her concerning the Godhead. Here are some simple and plain statements:
"There are three living persons of the heavenly trio; in the name of these three great powers – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit – those who receive Christ by living faith are baptized, and these powers will cooperate with the obedient subjects of heaven in their efforts to live the new life in Christ." (Special Testimonies, Series B, No. 7, pp.62,63.) Evangelism, p.614,615.
"The eternal heavenly dignitaries – God, and Christ, and the Holy Spirit – arming them [the disciples] with more than mortal energy… would advance with them to the work and convince the world of sin." (Manuscript 145, 1901) Evangelism, p. 616.
"The word of salvation is not a small matter, but so vast that the highest authorities are taken hold of by the expressed faith of the human agent. The eternal Godhead – the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost – is involved in the action required to make assurance to the human agent." Upward Look, p.148.
"In the great closing work we shall meet with perplexities that we know not how to deal with, but let us not forget that the three great powers of heaven are working, that a divine hand is on the wheel, and that God will bring His purposes to pass." (Manuscript 118, 1902) Evangelism, p.65
"When you gave yourself to Christ, you made a pledge in the presence of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit – the three great personal Dignitaries of heaven." 7 Bible Commentary, p.959; Sons and Daughters of God, p.351.
"The Lord Jesus Christ, the divine Son of God, existed from eternity, a distinct person, yet one with the Father." Review & Herald, April 5, 1906.
"He is the Eternal, self-existent Son." Evangelism, p. 615
Concerning the Holy Spirit:
"We need to realize that the Holy Spirit, who is as much a Person as God is a Person, is walking through these grounds." Evangelism, p. 616.
Though the term "trinity" had been in use for centuries, the Holy Spirit through Ellen G. White never used the term. It was a term well known to the SDA pioneers and membership. Instead, as we have seen, the Holy Spirit used these terms to represent the truth concerning the Godhead: "The Heavenly Trio," "Three Great Powers," "Three Living Persons," "Three Holy Dignitaries of heaven," and "Three holiest Beings in heaven," "The Eternal Godhead," and "Three great Worthies in heaven." All these terms describe three separate, distinct, eternal (not co-eternal) Beings. It is the concept that most Adventists believe in today – even by many of those who mistakenly use the term "trinity."
Because the word "trinity" is being used so much recently by the leadership of the SDA church, we have to ask, Has the true concept of three separate eternal Beings in the Godhead, been officially changed to the false Trinitarian concept of one god with three continual manifestations all of one substance?
It is a fact that belief in the Trinity is required for membership in the World Council of Churches. Is this new god an ecumenical ploy to make our SDA church agreeable to the fallen churches?
This is a tremendously serious issue that involves the first and second commandments.
1 – "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." Ex. 20:3.
2 – "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments." Exodus 20:4-6.
End of Article
From a different source we learn with regard to the Trinity...
that it "is the central doctrine of Catholic faith. Upon it are based all the other teachings of the Church." Handbook For Today's Catholics, p 12. In other sources, Catholic theologians explain that ALL the doctrines of the catholic church stem FROM the Trinity.
Expressions, such as the Trinity, made up by the Catholic Hierarchy to worship the Lord - expressions which cannot be found in the bible - are not suitable for the 7th Day Adventist church. Using the "Trinity" code-word in the confession of our faith makes it much harder for us to call the lost sheep out from the fallen churches of Babylon (third Angel's Message) because our efforts to win them over would not be greeted with much enthusiasm as there doesn't seem to be much of a difference these days between our church and their's - both sides appear to be worshiping the same God as represented by the "Trinity", although most Adventists don't seem to recognize the issues involved, not being fully aware of the fact that for the greater part of adventist history the "Trinity" was not in our belief system. Please note, the Godhead of the bible, made up of Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, is not the same as the Trinity. Just because there are 3 in the Godhead does not mean it is the Trinity. Some brethren think that there are two versions of the "Trinity", the adventist one and the one worshipped by the Sunday keeping churches. But that does not make any sense, because the "Trinity" concept is like a trademark, and it belongs to the organization which developed the doctrine more than 1600 years ago. To avoid confusion and the displeasure of the Lord we need to go back and rectify what went wrong in our belief system with regard to the Godhead and make the confession of our faith agree again with the Spirit of Prophecy. The "Trinity" word needs to be purged from 7th Day Adventism. Why should we these last days call the Godhead by a different name, a name of pagan origin which has no standing except on the basis of tradition?
Not everybody among Adventists believes that the "Trinity" is the right concept for the Godhead of the bible. I still remember the Revelation Seminar I attended at the end of 1989. The pastor was teaching from the bible about the members of the Godhead. He spent quite some time to make sure that we all understand the matter. When he was about finished with the topic of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, I asked with a certain hesitation, "Isn't that the Trinity?" The pastor looked at me, and after a while replied, "I wouldn't say that, I just wouldn't say that." Most everybody in that class was puzzled (including me) and to pacify us he announced that he will deal with the topic in more detail some other time.
When soon after I joined the 7th Day Adventist Church, we were still using the old hymnal. Of particular significance is hymn #73 - Holy, Holy, Holy. This hymn was originally written in 1826 by Reginald Heber. In its original form it read at the end of the first and fourth verses as follows: "God in three persons, blessed Trinity"
This song was put into the 1909 and 1941 Seventh-day Adventist Hymnals, but the trinity part was changed to: "God over all who rules eternity" and "Perfect in power, in love and purity"
This song was purposely changed by Seventh-day Adventists, reflecting their views on the Trinity. It shows that there is great reluctance among knowledgeable Adventists to accept the Trinity in place of the Godhead of the bible.
Why would anybody want to sing these depraved trinity-lyrics if there is something so much better to glorify the Godhead = God over all who rules eternity. Why use this stale trinity-verbiage if there is something so much better to express our appreciation for the character of God = Perfect in power, in love and purity. These are words of Inspiration, God over all who rules eternity... perfect in power, in love and purity. We need to hold onto these words, but instead we have disposed of them by adopting the new hymnal and doing away with the old one.
The Spanish Hymnal does not have the corruptions of our new Hymnal - see Hymn #61 in their Hymnal - Santo, Santo, Santo..... Dios sobre todo, Rey de eternidad - - puro es tu amor, perfecto es tu poder.
Adventism was doing quite well as a denomination without the Trinity word for many years even after sister White had passed away, then what was the reason later on for adding the Trinity to our belief system? Was it necessary for Adventists to better understand what the Godhead is about? Was it added to our doctrine to sustain unity among brethren? Does the Lord want us to use that concept for Him to be glorified? Was there any convincing good reason to officially introduce the Trinity to the 7th Day Adventist Church? Are we now closer to the Lord that the Trinity is firmly anchored among our 28 Fundamental Beliefs? Do we have a higher standard of holiness now that even the baptismal certificate gives prominence to the Trinity?
Some are saying that Ellen White accepted the Trinity doctrine late in her life. Does that make any sense? Such change of mind on her part would have destroyed the entire adventist doctrine. Nevertheless, some influential men of higher learning have been quite successful to impress the adventist laity that Ellen White was referring to the "Trinity" whenever she mentioned the "Heavenly Trio", "Three Dignitaries of Heaven", "Three Holiest Beings in Heaven", "Three Great Powers of Heaven", "Three great Worthies of Heaven". Providentially it cannot be proven that Ellen White ever made a statement, not even late in her life, that she gave her consent to use the "Trinity" word in place of any of the above expressions with reference to the Godhead. It is more reasonable to think that her motive in using all these different expressions when speaking about the Godhead, was to stay clear of giving homage to the "Trinity". It looks like a determined effort on her part to never ever mention that word neither in speech nor in writing.
Times have changed, more than 100 years have elapsed since the last message of warning was proclaimed by God's messenger. Today, in our time, we are faced with a GC leadership determined to have us believe in the "Trinity" making it appear as if it were the right concept of God, whereas the Godhead of the bible (KJV ASV YLT AMP) is portrayed to be just a substitute word for the "Trinity". For this to be fully accepted by the church, the testimony of Ellen White had to be twisted to make it look as if she had accepted the "Trinity" doctrine late in her life. This new revelation, despite lack of any truth or merit, is taking hold among the brethren. The ground has been prepared for the ultimate deception to spread wide and far. Indoctrination of the adventist community with regard to the "Trinity" is gaining momentum. This false teaching is coming in on us like a steamroller. Sister White warned us in 1904, "The enemy of souls has sought to bring in the supposition that a great reformation was to take place among Seventh-day Adventists, and that this reformation would consist in giving up the doctrines which stand as the pillars of our faith... The principles of truth that God in His wisdom has given to the remnant church, would be discarded. Our religion would be changed. The fundamental principles that have sustained the work for the last fifty years would be accounted as error... Nothing would be allowed to stand in the way..."
We are in trouble, serious trouble, unless we start questioning our habit to blindly accept whatever the General Conference leadership is proclaiming. We need to wake up and adopt the attitude of the Bereans in the time of Paul's ministry who "received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so" [Acts 17:11].
The conclusion of the matter is this - for all who want to serve the Lord in Spirit and Truth it would be worthwhile to do like sister White did in her time, that is, don't mention the Trinity word if you are talking about the Godhead. After all, the Godhead is part of the bible [ Acts 17:29, Rom.1:20, Col.2:9 ] whereas the Trinity word is nowhere to be found in the holy scriptures, regardless of what bible version one may want to consult. Looks like the Trinity word and the concept of the Trinity are in opposition to the Spirit of the Lord. [ Trinity = catholic concept of God ]
abbreviated, condensed form of this article
We have nothing to fear for the Future except
as we forget the way the Lord has led us
and His teaching in our past History.
However, we need to understand what the OMEGA is about. Sister White was warning us, she said, "the Living Temple contains the Alpha of these theories. The Omega would follow in a little while, I tremble for our people." We cannot possibly hope to be protected by the Lord for the coming time of trouble, if we go along with the OMEGA heresy. We need to find out, in what way we have departed from the Spirit of Prophecy and the pioneers. It is of utmost importance that we understand the matter.
The Godhead of Dr. Kellogg as advocated in his book "The Living Temple" was nothing but pantheism - sister White strongly opposed that kind of teaching - she termed it the "alpha of deadly heresies". She also said, "The omega will follow, and will be received by those who are not willing to heed the warning God has given... The Omega will be of a most startling nature... I tremble for our people".
What does the expression "most startling" imply? It suggests something unusual, strange, or unconventional in which this heresy is differing because it is of a subtle nature. And why did sister White tremble for our people? She did not know what the Omega would be, but she knew that it would be terrible in its effect, as it probably might have been shown to her that most of our people would not see it.
Brothers and Sisters, as it turns out, the Omega is here already. It has been around for quite some time now in the adventist church. Very few of us realized what happened when it was instituted. The Alpha was a serious deviation from what the bible tells us about the Godhead. The Omega is even more so at odds with the biblical Godhead - it is a corruption and a counterfeit of what the bible says about the true Godhead. This would not have happened if sister White had been alive in our time. Now we need to take care of this problem everybody on his own, because we don't have anybody of authority to address such problems when they arise. The debate is not about whether there are three persons in the Godhead or if there are only two - such thoughts are without merit since the bible clearly states that there are three. The problem with the Trinity word is that it had its origin within the papacy, and therefore must not be used by a denomination that wants to be separate. On top of that, the Godhead of Adventism, as established by the Spirit of Prophecy, is quite different from the Trinity. There was no good reason therefore to have the trinity word adopted as a substitute for the Godhead of the bible, unless we had wanted to be friends with popedom.
We should not feel that we can ignore this problem thinking, "Who cares if we call the Godhead by another name?" We may not care, but the Lord does care about it, because it is hard to imagine that the Godhead would appreciate being identified with the popedom inspired trinity-word. Even if we never mention the trinity-word we are still not right with the Lord, because that word is now in our fundamental beliefs as mentioned earlier already, and it is in our baptismal certificate which, I suppose, most of us have signed. This is a serious matter. We cannot possibly expect the Lord to protect us in the time of trouble if we go along with the Trinity heresy by keeping silent and doing nothing. Can we with that attitude hope to receive the outpouring of the latter rain, to be sealed with the seal of God?
So then, what shall we do? Individually we are not able to change anything in the fundamental adventist beliefs, neither can we change the wording of the baptismal certificate we signed. What we need to do is, we need to on our own, in private, go before God in serious prayer telling Him that we did not realize what we did when signing the baptismal certificate, that we are aware now of the gravity of the Trinity heresy, and wish to not have any part in it. We then may close the prayer asking forgiveness and that He protect us from the attacks of the evil one. We may want to repeat this prayer from time to time on subsequent days until we feel that we are firmly established and set against this heresy. What is needed is a heartfelt conviction that the Trinity is not the right concept for the Godhead of the Bible.
Is this what the Pioneers believed?
Would it be possible to go back to this early Adventist Doctrine of the Godhead?
It was what most Adventists believed until 1930, and perhaps even until 1940.
Something for us to keep in mind :
We have far more to fear from within than from without. The hindrances to strength and success are far greater from the church itself than from the world. [ LDE 1992, CHAPTER 11.] Satan's chief work is at the headquarters of our faith [ 4.T CHAPTER 18 ]. It is Satan's plan to weaken the faith of God's people in the Testimonies [ LDE CHAPTER 12 ].
Suggested change of the baptismal Certificate
Bibles in Collision, or is it Collusion?
Godhead of Nicea
What Happened 508 CE?
( overview )
Why do popular modern Bibles
tell us less about Jesus?