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In the Name of God بسم الله

Trinity vs Unitarian Discussion - Is Jesus God

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1 hour ago, andres said:

I am not questioning your right. Just being curious. By the way I am a lutheran not a unitarian. Always were. As child I was taught evening and dinner prayer to God. Never to Jesus or the Ghost. Still I always pray to God, never to Jesus. Old habit. Many, like pentacostals, pray to Jesus, but I think praying to the Ghost is very unusual. I dont mind if people do, all three are the one God. 

Trinity may not have been declared dogma in 325, but as I understand the creed from back then, trinity was already an established theory.

I remember you said earlier that you said you were Lutheran so I meant Unitarian in the generic sense not in the specific sense. As to the trinity being an established theory, I would strenuously disagree with that because all the written evidence says otherwise. It seems that trinitarians feel threatened by the written record and thus feel the need to look for 'conwayan' alternative facts.

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2 hours ago, A true Sunni said:

As to the trinity being an established theory, I would strenuously disagree with that because all the written evidence says otherwise.

Is the creed from 325 I linked to not a written evidence??

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56 minutes ago, andres said:

Is the creed from 325 I linked to not a written evidence??

The written creed from 325 proves my assertions not yours. I previously said to you to read evidence that you post before referencing it.

I am not sure how many times I have to repeat myself before you go back and read the creed that you keep referencing.

I summarised it for you which you didn't dispute and a few posts later you are again referencing it as supporting the Trinity.

Any objective reader reader can see it's a di-ity + 1 . Any objective reader will see that even Constantinople creed doesn't reflect Trinity.

Even the Filioque of the 6th century that caused the great schism casts into question the nature of the Trinity.

So again and again and again I repeat ad nauseum 

Why would the great and good bishops of Nicaea codify Di-ity and reject Un-ity without even a mention of Trinity if that is what they believed.

Then they added to the Creed to choose a half way house for the Holy Spirit at Constantinople

200 years later they again added to the creed trying to create a Trinity .

the attempt to define the Trinity caused the great schism.

Even Christian academic writings support this.

The mystery of the Trinity is not the nature of the Trinity but why it took 600 years to codify it.

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Again....I don't think most Christian academics think there was no Trinitarian concept at Nicea. ( And the Filioque clause on the procession of the Holy Spirit was not papally inserted even into western creeds until the eleventh century...whether it is a big deal or not depends on what eastern and western theologians one asks. I think it is safe to say both Orthodox and Latins are firmly Trinitarian and agree on most points there) I spent many a year studying under Christian academics of both Catholic and Protestant  persuasions and reading many more.

You believe the Councils created something. I get that.
I believe the evidence points to them affirming what was already believed and answering heterodox questions that came up. 
The creed of Constantinople , for instance, is the creed used long before the Council as baptismal creeds in churches. This one was known even in relatively out of the way places like churches on the island of Cyprus. They are mentioned in the writings of folks like St. Epiphanous of Salamis ...written down before the Council even met. I seriously doubt that the little Christian population of Cyprus could bend the rest of Christendom to their way of thinking.


Irenaeus ( died circa 202)
. . . this faith: in one God, the Father Almighty, who made the heaven and the earth and the seas and all the things that are in them; and in one Christ Jesus, the Son of God, who was made flesh for our salvation; and in the Holy Spirit, who made known through the prophets the plan of salvation, and the coming, and the birth from a virgin, and the passion, and the resurrection from the dead, and the bodily ascension into heaven of the beloved Christ Jesus, our Lord, and his future appearing from heaven in the glory of the Father to sum up all things and to raise anew all flesh of the whole human race . 
Hyppolytus
When the person being baptized goes down into the water, he who baptizes him, putting his hand on him, shall say: "Do you believe in God, the Father Almighty?" And the person being baptized shall say: "I believe." Then holding his hand on his head, he shall baptize him once. And then he shall say: "Do you believe in Christ Jesus, the Son of God, who was born of the Virgin Mary, and was crucified under Pontius Pilate, and was dead and buried, and rose again the third day, alive from the dead, and ascended into heaven, and sat at the right hand of the Father, and will come to judge the living and the dead?" And when he says: "I believe," he is baptized again. And again he shall say: "Do you believe in the Holy Spirit, in the holy church, and the resurrection of the body?" The person being baptized shall say: "I believe," and then he is baptized a third time.
-- Hippolytus, early third century

Here are some contemporary thoughts on some of these issues. I purposely do not use Catholic thinkers lest I be accused of spreading " Catholic lies". I have selected two Protestants for now. Unfortunately I am short on time these days. On the up side , I'm not able to engage in too much theological debate ( and I apologize for the pasting) because I need to prepare for the court-ordered repatriation of  nearly 100 acres of my family property from the settlers.  So praise be to God for judges who understand federal indian law. :grin:

 

 

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The Council of Nicea is often misrepresented by cults and other religious movements. The actual concern of the council was clearly and unambiguously the relationship between the Father and the Son. Is Christ a creature, or true God? The council said He was true God. Yet, the opponents of the deity of Christ did not simply give up after the council’s decision. In fact, they almost succeeded in overturning the Nicene affirmation of Christ’s deity. But faithful Christians like Athanasius continued to defend the truth, and in the end, truth triumphed over error.
The conversation intensified quickly. “You can’t really trust the Bible,” my Latter-day Saints acquaintance said, “because you really don’t know what books belong in it. You see, a bunch of men got together and decided the canon of Scripture at the Council of Nicea, picking some books, rejecting others.” A few others were listening in on the conversation at the South Gate of the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City. It was the LDS General Conference, and I again heard the Council of Nicea presented as that point in history where something “went wrong,” where some group of unnamed, faceless men “decided” for me what I was supposed to believe. I quickly corrected him about Nicea — nothing was decided, or even said, about the canon of Scripture at that council.
I was reminded how often the phrase “the Council of Nicea” is used as an accusation by those who reject the Christian faith. New Agers often allege that the council removed the teaching of reincarnation from the Bible. And of course, Jehovah’s Witnesses and critics of the deity of Christ likewise point to that council as the “beginning of the Trinity” or the “first time the deity of Christ was asserted as orthodox teaching.” Others see it as the beginning of the union of church and state in light of the participation of the Roman Emperor, Constantine. Some even say it was the beginning of the Roman Catholic church.
THE BACKGROUND
Excepting the apostolic council in Jerusalem recorded in Acts 15, the Council of Nicea stands above other early councils of the church as far as its scope and its focus. Luther called it “the most sacred of all councils.” When it began on June 19, 325, the fires of persecution had barely cooled. The Roman Empire had been unsuccessful in its attempt to wipe out the Christian faith. Fourteen years had elapsed since the final persecutions under the Emperor Galerius had ended. Many of the men who made up the Council of Nicea bore in their bodies the scars of persecution. They had been willing to suffer for the name of Christ.
The council was called by the Emperor Constantine. Leading bishops in the church agreed to participate, so serious was the matter at hand. To understand why the first universal council was called, we must go back to around A.D. 318. In the populous Alexandria suburb of Baucalis, a well-liked presbyter by the name of Arius began teaching in opposition to the bishop of Alexandria, Alexander. Specifically, he disagreed with Alexander’s teaching that Jesus, the Son of God, had existed eternally, being “generated” eternally by the Father. Instead, Arius insisted that “there was a time when the Son was not.” Christ must be numbered among the created beings — highly exalted, to be sure, but a creation, nonetheless. Alexander defended his position, and it was not long before Arius was declared a heretic in a local council in 321.
This did not end the matter. Arius simply moved to Palestine and began promoting his ideas there. Alexander wrote letters to the churches in the area, warning them against those he called the “Exukontians,” from a Greek phrase meaning “out of nothing.” Arius taught that the Son of God was created “out of nothing.” Arius found an audience for his teachings, and over the course of the next few years the debate became so heated that it came to the attention of Constantine, the Emperor.
Having consolidated his hold on the Empire, Constantine promoted unity in every way possible. He recognized that a schism in the Christian church would be just one more destabilizing factor in his empire, and he moved to solve the problem. While he had encouragement from men like Hosius, bishop of Cordova, and Eusebius of Caesarea, Constantine was the one who officially called for the council.
THE PARTICIPANTS AND THEIR VIEWS
The Council of Nicea was mostly Eastern. According to tradition, 318 bishops were in attendance, though most historians believe this number is a bit high. The vast majority came from the East, with less than a dozen representing the rest of the Empire.
The council was divided into three groups. Arius was in attendance, at the command of the Emperor, along with a few supporters. Most notable of these were two Egyptian bishops, Theonas and Secundus, as well as Eusebius of Nicomedia. This group represented the viewpoint that Christ was of a different substance (Greek: heteroousios) than the Father, that is, that He is a creature.
The “orthodox” group was led primarily by Hosius of Cordova and Alexander of Alexandria (accompanied by his brilliant young deacon, and later champion of the Nicene position, Athanasius).They represented the view that Christ was of the same substance (Greek: homo-ousios )as the Father, that is, that He has eternally shared in the one essence that is God and in full deity.
The middle group, led by Eusebius of Caesarea (and hence often called the “Eusebian” party), distrusted the term homoousios, primarily because it had been used in the previous century by the modalistic heretic Sabellius and others who wished to teach the error that the Father and the Son were one person. This middle group agreed with the orthodox party that Jesus was fully God, but they were concerned that the term homoousios could be misunderstood to support the false idea that the Father and Son are one person. The middle group therefore presented the idea that the Son was of a similar substance (Greek: homoiousios) as the Father. By this means they hoped to avoid both the error of Arius as well as the perceived danger of Sabellianism found in the term homoousios. 
Party/Leaders
View of Christ
Arian/Arius
of a different substance — heteroousios
Orthodox/Alexander, Hosius, Athanasius
of the same substance — homoousios
Eusebian/Eusebius of Caesarea
of a similar substance — homoiousios
THE ROLE OF CONSTANTINE
We are dependent, in large measure, on the words of Eusebius of Caesarea for our knowledge of many of the events at the council. This is somewhat unfortunate, because Eusebius, the first “church historian,” was a partisan participant as well. Historians recognize that his viewpoint is influenced by his desire for the favor of the Emperor and by his own political and theological goals and positions. Philip Schaff, in reproducing Eusebius’s description of the entrance of the Emperor into the council, speaks of Eusebius’s “panegyrical flattery.” Eusebius presents Constantine in the highest possible terms so as to enhance his own position.
What really was Constantine’s role? Often it is alleged (especially by Jehovah’s Witnesses, for example) that, for whatever reasons, Constantine forced the “same substance” view upon the council,or, at the very least, insured that it would be adopted. This is not the case. There is no question that Constantine wanted a unified church after the Council of Nicea. But he was no theologian, nor did he really care to any degree what basis would be used to forge the unity he desired. Later events show that he didn’t have any particular stake in the term homoousios and was willing to abandon it, if he saw that doing so would be of benefit to him. As Schaff rightly points out with reference to the term itself, “The word…was not an invention of the council of Nicea, still less of Constantine, but had previously arisen in theological language, and occurs even in Origen [185-254] and among the Gnostics….” Constantine is not the source or origin of the term, and the council did not adopt the term at his command.
THE DECISION AND THE CREED
The truth of how the council came to use the term is not difficult to discern. Athanasius notes that the gathered bishops truly desired to express their faith in primarily scriptural language, and they tried to do so. But every time they came up with a statement that was limited solely to biblical terms, the Arians would find a way of “reading” the statement so as to allow for agreement. They were forced to see that they needed to use a term that could not be misunderstood, that would clearly differentiate between a belief in the full deity of Christ and all those positions that would compromise that belief. Therefore, they focused on the term homoousios as being completely antithetical to the Arian position, and at the same time reflective of the scriptural truth that Jesus Christ is not a creature, but is fully God, incarnate deity.
The “orthodox” party had to express clearly to the “middle group” that by the use of the term homoousios they were not in any way attempting to give aid and comfort to the modalists and Sabellians in the East who continued to teach their errors even in the days of Nicea. They were not compromising the existence of three Persons, but were instead safeguarding the full deity of the Persons, and in particular, the Son. The resulting creed, signed by all but Arius and two bishops, was quite clear in its position:
We believe…in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, begotten from the Father, only-begotten, that is, from the substance of the Father, God from God, light from light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one substance (homoousios) with the Father, through Whom all things were made….
The creed also contained the “anathema” (i.e., condemnation) for those who rejected these truths, and for the first time, such anathemas carried with them civil repercussions. Arius and some of his followers were banished, even though for a short time. This set a precedent that eventually would have tremendous impact on culture and church, but it is also a separate issue from the theological proclamation of the council.
Nicea did not come up with something “new” in the creed. Belief in the deity of Christ was as old as the apostles themselves, who enunciated this truth over and over again. References to the full deity of Christ are abundant in the period prior to the Council of Nicea. Ignatius (died c. 108), the great martyr bishop of Antioch, could easily speak of Jesus Christ as God at the opening of the second century. More than once Ignatius speaks of Jesus Christ as “our God.” When writing to Polycarp he can exhort him to “await Him that is above every season, the Eternal, the Invisible, (who for our sake became visible!), the Impalpable, the Impassible, (who for our sake suffered!), who in all ways endured for our sake.” Ignatius shows the highest view of Christ at a very early stage, when he writes to the Ephesians: “There is only one physician, of flesh and of spirit, generate and ingenerate, God in man, true Life in death, Son of Mary and Son of God, first passible and then impassible, Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Melito of Sardis (c. 170-180), a much less well-known figure, was tremendously gifted in expressing the ancient faith of the church regarding the deity of Christ: 
And so he was lifted up upon a tree and an inscription was provided too, to indicate who was being killed. Who was it? It is a heavy thing to say, and a most fearful thing to refrain from saying. But listen, as you tremble in the face of him on whose account the earth trembled. He who hung the earth in place is hanged. He who fixed the heavens in place is fixed in place. He who made all things fast is made fast on the tree. The Master is insulted. God is murdered. The King of Israel is destroyed by an Israelite hand.
Nicea was not creating some new doctrine, some new belief, but clearly, explicitly, defining truth against error. The council had no idea that they, by their gathering together, possessed some kind of sacramental power of defining beliefs: they sought to clarify biblical truth, not to put themselves in the forefront and make themselves a second source of authority. 
This can easily be seen from the fact that Athanasius, in defending the Nicene council, does so on the basis of its harmony with Scripture, not on the basis of the council having some inherent authority in and of itself. Note his words: “Vainly then do they run about with the pretext that they have demanded Councils for the faith’s sake; for divine Scripture is sufficient above all things; but if a Council be needed on the point, there are the proceedings of the Fathers, for the Nicene Bishops did not neglect this matter, but stated the doctrines so exactly, that persons reading their words honestly, cannot but be reminded by them of the religion towards Christ announced in divine Scripture.”
The relationship between the sufficient Scriptures and the “Nicene Bishops” should be noted carefully. The Scriptures are not made insufficient by the council; rather, the words of the council “remind” one of the “religion towards Christ announced in divine Scripture.” Obviously, then, the authority of the council is derivative from its fidelity to Scripture.
CANON #6
While the creed of the council was its central achievement, it was not the only thing that the bishops accomplished during their meeting. Twenty canons were presented dealing with various disciplinary issues within the church. Of most interest to us today was the sixth, which read as follows: 
Let the ancient customs in Egypt, Libya, and Pentapolis prevail, that the Bishop of Alexandria have jurisdiction in all these, since the like is customary for the Bishop of Rome also. Likewise in Antioch and the other provinces, let the Churches retain their privileges.
This canon is significant because it demonstrates that at this time there was no concept of a single universal head of the church with jurisdiction over everyone else. While later Roman bishops would claim such authority, resulting in the development of the papacy, at this time no Christian looked to one individual, or church, as the final authority. This is important because often we hear it alleged that the Trinity, or the Nicene definition of the deity of Christ, is a “Roman Catholic” concept “forced” on the church by the pope. The simple fact of the matter is, when the bishops gathered at Nicea they did not acknowledge the bishop of Rome as anything more than the leader of the most influential church in the West.


NICEA TODAY
Why do Christians believe in the deity of Christ today? Is it because they have been forced to do so by legislated theology from councils and popes? No, it is because the Scriptures teach this truth. When orthodox believers affirm the validity of the creed hammered out at Nicea, they are simply affirming a concise, clear presentation of scriptural truth. The authority of the Nicene creed, including its assertion of the homoousion, is not to be found in some concept of an infallible church, but in the fidelity of the creed to scriptural revelation. It speaks with the voice of the apostles because it speaks the truth as they proclaimed it. Modern Christians can be thankful for the testimony of an Athanasius who stood for these truths even when the vast majority stood against him. We should remember his example in our day. 

James R. White is Scholar in Residence at the College of Christian Studies, Grand Canyon University, an adjunct professor at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary (AZ Campus) and Faraston Theological Seminary, and Director of Ministries for Alpha and Omega Ministries in Phoenix, Arizona.
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Early Trinitarian Quotes

By Matt Slick 
There are cult groups (Jehovah's Witnesses, The Way International, Christadelphians, etc.) who deny the Trinity and state that the doctrine was not mentioned until the 4th Century until after the time of the Council of Nicea (325).  This council "was called by Emperor Constantine to deal with the error of Arianism which was threatening the unity of the Christian Church."
The following quotes show that the doctrine of the Trinity was indeed alive-and-well before the Council of Nicea:
Polycarp (70-155/160).  Bishop of Smyrna.  Disciple of John the Apostle.
"O Lord God almighty . . . I bless you and glorify you through the eternal and heavenly high priest Jesus Christ, your beloved Son, through whom be glory to you, with Him and the Holy Spirit, both now and forever" 
Justin Martyr (100?-165?).  He was a Christian apologist and martyr.
"For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Savior Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water" (First Apol., LXI).
Ignatius of Antioch (died 98/117).  Bishop of Antioch.  He wrote much in defense of Christianity.
"In Christ Jesus our Lord, by whom and with whom be glory and power to the Father with the Holy Spirit for ever" "We have also as a Physician the Lord our God Jesus the Christ the only-begotten Son and Word, before time began, but who afterwards became also man, of Mary the virgin.  For ‘the Word was made flesh.' Being incorporeal, He was in the body; being impassible, He was in a passable body; being immortal, He was in a mortal body; being life, He became subject to corruption, that He might free our souls from death and corruption, and heal them, and might restore them to health, when they were diseased with ungodliness and wicked lusts." (Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, eds., The ante-Nicene Fathers, Grand Rapids.
Irenaeus (115-190).  As a boy he listened to Polycarp, the disciple of John.  He became Bishop of Lyons.
"The Church, though dispersed throughout the whole world, even to the ends of the earth, has received from the apostles and their disciples this faith: . . . one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are in them; and in one Christ Jesus, the Son of God, who became incarnate for our salvation; and in the Holy Spirit, who proclaimed through the prophets the dispensations of God, and the advents, and the birth from a virgin, and the passion, and the resurrection from the dead, and the ascension into heaven in the flesh of the beloved Christ Jesus, our Lord, and His manifestation from heaven in the glory of the Father ‘to gather all things in one,' and to raise up anew all flesh of the whole human race, in order that to Christ Jesus, our Lord, and God, and Savior, and King, according to the will of the invisible Father, ‘every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth, and that every tongue should confess; to him, and that He should execute just judgment towards all . . . '" (Against Heresies X.l)
Tertullian (160-215).  African apologist and theologian.  He wrote much in defense of Christianity.
"We define that there are two, the Father and the Son, and three with the Holy Spirit, and this number is made by the pattern of salvation . . . [which] brings about unity in trinity, interrelating the three, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  They are three, not in dignity, but in degree, not in substance but in form, not in power but in kind.  They are of one substance and power, because there is one God from whom these degrees, forms and kinds devolve in the name of Father, Son and Holy Spirit." (Adv. Prax. 23; PL 2.156-7).
Origen (185-254).  Alexandrian theologian.  Defended Christianity and wrote much about Christianity.
"If anyone would say that the Word of God or the Wisdom of God had a beginning, let him beware lest he direct his impiety rather against the unbegotten Father, since he denies that he was always Father, and that he has always begotten the Word, and that he always had wisdom in all previous times or ages or whatever can be imagined in priority . . . There can be no more ancient title of almighty God than that of Father, and it is through the Son that he is Father" (De Princ. 1.2.; PG 11.132).
"For if [the Holy Spirit were not eternally as He is, and had received knowledge at some time and then became the Holy Spirit] this were the case, the Holy Spirit would never be reckoned in the unity of the Trinity, i.e., along with the unchangeable Father and His Son, unless He had always been the Holy Spirit." (Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, eds., The Ante-Nicene Fathers, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1975 rpt., Vol. 4, p. 253, de Principiis, 1.111.4)
"Moreover, nothing in the Trinity can be called greater or less, since the fountain of divinity alone contains all things by His word and reason, and by the Spirit of His mouth sanctifies all things which are worthy of sanctification . . . " (Roberts and Donaldson, Ante-Nicene Fathers, Vol. 4, p. 255, de Principii., I. iii. 7).
Conclusion
If, as the anti-Trinitarians maintain, the Trinity is not a biblical doctrine and was never taught until the council of Nicea in 325, then why do these quotes exist?  The answer is simple: the Trinity is a biblical doctrine, and it was taught before the council of Nicea in 325 A.D.
Part of the reason that the Trinity doctrine was not "officially" taught until the time of the Council of Nicea is that Christianity was illegal until shortly before the council.  It wasn't really possible for official Christian groups to meet and discuss doctrine.  For the most part, they were fearful of making public pronouncements concerning their faith.
Additionally, if a group had attacked the person of Adam, the early church would have responded with an official doctrine of who Adam was.  As it was, the person of Christ was attacked.  When the Church defended the deity of Christ, the doctrine of the Trinity was further defined.
The early church believed in the Trinity as is evidenced by the quotes above, and it wasn't necessary to really make them official.  It wasn't until errors started to creep in that councils began to meet to discuss the Trinity as well as other doctrines that came under fire.

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Thankyou for providing all this insightful information. I was not aware of this information However despite all you have written only 2 could be considered Trinitarian. So you have proven that some people considered trinity a viable creed.

This makes it even more damning that the original Nicean creed or the constantinople creed didn't mention it all. The trinitarian creed was known but not even acknowledged in the writings.

Any independent observer would be drawn to the conclusion that the trinitarians were such a minor irritation they werent even worth discussing

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8 hours ago, A true Sunni said:

Thankyou for providing all this insightful information. I was not aware of this information However despite all you have written only 2 could be considered Trinitarian. So you have proven that some people considered trinity a viable creed.

This makes it even more damning that the original Nicean creed or the constantinople creed didn't mention it all. The trinitarian creed was known but not even acknowledged in the writings.

Any independent observer would be drawn to the conclusion that the trinitarians were such a minor irritation they werent even worth discussing

Trinity is impossible for humans to fully understand. God is the creator, Jesus had a body, but what does the Ghost look like? I believe we all have a more or less different imagination, so trinity can be different. I do not agree with you saying that trinity of 325 only contains 2 deities, but I cannot refute that there were persons in Nicea that believed so. The need for specifying trinity indicates that there were not consensus. Specification does not change peoples views, it only makes them shut up if threatened with excomunication or worse. Wikipedia say:

Tertullian, a Latin theologian who wrote in the early 3rd century, is credited as being the first to use the Latin words "Trinity",[23] "person" and "substance"[24] to explain that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are "one in essence—not one in Person

This was 100 years prior to the Nicæan creed that also mentions the three components. What makes you believe that the Spirit was not regarded as one of three deities according to the Creed of 325?

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Matthew 28:19 King James Version (KJV)

Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

Although the statement says and of, and of, pointing out the three separate beings I can see how this could become a discussion.

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13 hours ago, andres said:

Trinity is impossible for humans to fully understand. God is the creator, Jesus had a body, but what does the Ghost look like? I believe we all have a more or less different imagination, so trinity can be different. I do not agree with you saying that trinity of 325 only contains 2 deities, but I cannot refute that there were persons in Nicea that believed so. The need for specifying trinity indicates that there were not consensus. Specification does not change peoples views, it only makes them shut up if threatened with excomunication or worse. Wikipedia say:

Tertullian, a Latin theologian who wrote in the early 3rd century, is credited as being the first to use the Latin words "Trinity",[23] "person" and "substance"[24] to explain that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are "one in essence—not one in Person

This was 100 years prior to the Nicæan creed that also mentions the three components. What makes you believe that the Spirit was not regarded as one of three deities according to the Creed of 325?

Several points here and I fear I am in danger of repeating myself. Taking it from the top yet again because it appears that you wish to that you either aren't reading what I am writing or deliberately misconstruing what I am saying and what your own Christian theologians say.

I am going to say a few comments about  your posts to date, If you could avoid making the same mistakes or repeating mistakes it would be helpful.

Talking about Deity is not the same as talking about Trinity there fore proving something is a deity does not prove they are Trinity ( this is basic theology)

No-one has denied that there may have been elements within Christendom that supported Trinity Tertullian is a case in pont( I already acknowledged that - not sure why you felt the need to repeat it)

Creed is a statement of belief and the Nicean Creed 325 was the codified statement of belief that the majority signed up to

Trinity is about essence, substance as posted by you and included in the definition of Trinity.

So in the Nicean creed even if Trinity isnt mentioned it should discuss substance and essence  

The question that was posed was what was the belief of the majority Bishops at Nicea 325 as evidenced by the Creed the majority signed up to.   

OK so what does the Nicean Creed 325 say

Belief in One God

Belief in Father & Son one essence one substance

Belief in Holy Spirit

That is not Trinity that is Di-ity

Father & Son one essence and deity

Holy Spirit another essence and deity

Thats Di-ity

In fact if you read the Filoque you will see the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father & Son

Using Arian logic this makes the Holy Spirit subordinate to the Father & Son and there isn't a true Trinity either   

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10 hours ago, andres said:

Is there a command to spread the faith to be found in the Quran??

Not really.

Rather the Quran REQUIRES the faithful to help encourage

(i) the doing of good deeds                  (Arabic - Amr bil Ma'roof)

(ii) the abstinence from bad deeds     (Arabic - Nahi anil Munkar).

This command has been repeated countless times in the Quran.

This should be applied both to Muslims and non-Muslims.

So if I, as a Muslim, see a non-Muslim, heading for the casino, it is my DUTY to help him reconsider his intention and to avoid sin.

It doesn't matter if the person about to commit a sin is a Muslim or non-Muslim.

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Hi Sunni

So you mean that the 325 creed say one deity is Father=Son and the other is the Holy Ghost.  

From the creed only, one can make this conclusion. However this is not the only possible conclusion about the nature of the Spirit. Other documents must be regarded. Have you found any that support your 2-God theory? 

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1 hour ago, andres said:

Hi Sunni

So you mean that the 325 creed say one deity is Father=Son and the other is the Holy Ghost.  

From the creed only, one can make this conclusion. However this is not the only possible conclusion about the nature of the Spirit. Other documents must be regarded. Have you found any that support your 2-God theory? 

Thank you at last we are moving forward. Before I answer your question, I would pose 2 questions to you and answering those will supply your answer.

What was the purpose of the Nicean council ?

And what does Creed mean ?

Some of the objectives of the Nicean council council was to clear up controversies, define what a Christian was, define the nature of god and put this in a statement of belief called a 'Creed'

So like it not the first Nicean conucil rejected Un-ity and embraced Di-ity without once mentioning Trin-ity.

60 years later they  achieved a half way house to Trinity

200 years later they issued the Filoque which if you read it objectively and use 'Bishop Arius' logic it cannot be considered Trinity either.

So yes Nicean Council 325 over 90% of the Bishops signed up to a Di-ity model

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1 hour ago, A true Sunni said:

Thank you at last we are moving forward. Before I answer your question, I would pose 2 questions to you and answering those will supply your answer.

What was the purpose of the Nicean council ?

And what does Creed mean ?

Some of the objectives of the Nicean council council was to clear up controversies, define what a Christian was, define the nature of god and put this in a statement of belief called a 'Creed'

So like it not the first Nicean conucil rejected Un-ity and embraced Di-ity without once mentioning Trin-ity.

60 years later they  achieved a half way house to Trinity

200 years later they issued the Filoque which if you read it objectively and use 'Bishop Arius' logic it cannot be considered Trinity either.

So yes Nicean Council 325 over 90% of the Bishops signed up to a Di-ity model

It would be apropriate if you, before asking me to answer more questions, answer my question.

Have you found other Christian documents from the first 4 centuries that support that the creeds operate with 2 deities?

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2 hours ago, andres said:

It would be apropriate if you, before asking me to answer more questions, answer my question.

Have you found other Christian documents from the first 4 centuries that support that the creeds operate with 2 deities?

If you had read my answer you would have seen that I asked you the question and then answered it. If you had reflected on the questions and answers you would have realised that what I was saying to you that I didn't need go look for any more documentation. The great and good of Nicea 325 from every part of Christendom would have been far more aware of documents then we are 1700 years later. The great and good the experts and pinnacles of religious authority in Nicea 325 declared Di-ity . What other authority individually or collectively would you like to refer to that out weighs the cream of Christendom.

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Hi Sunni

Thank you for answering my question. Back to yours.

In Swedish we say Trosbekännelse=confession of belief. It is used to define the common belief within our Church.

Nicaea had more than one issue to deal with but the dispute on trinity was urgent. The big fight was against Arius idea that God was the boss, Jesus was created by God, second in the hierarchy. Third in line was the Holy Ghost, also created by God. As we know this position lost the vote to the Nicean creed. In my opinion this creed does not say that the Holy Ghost was a second independent God. Had this been so, the Creed indisputable had been polytheistic. Such an idea does not pop up from nowhere, (nor did Arianism).The dispute had been going on very long, and had there been a "2-god party" the polemic had been revealed this. That is why I asked you if there are any documents to show such party existed. I am pretty sure it did not. A polytheistic idea was never an option.

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4 hours ago, andres said:

That is why I asked you if there are any documents to show such party existed. 

I think there is much more information on Nicea which you guys are not aware of.

And of the entire story of the deification of Jesus.

It would be an interesting piece if someone knew the full story.

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5 hours ago, andres said:

Hi Sunni

Thank you for answering my question. Back to yours.

In Swedish we say Trosbekännelse=confession of belief. It is used to define the common belief within our Church.

Nicaea had more than one issue to deal with but the dispute on trinity was urgent. The big fight was against Arius idea that God was the boss, Jesus was created by God, second in the hierarchy. Third in line was the Holy Ghost, also created by God. As we know this position lost the vote to the Nicean creed. In my opinion this creed does not say that the Holy Ghost was a second independent God. Had this been so, the Creed indisputable had been polytheistic. Such an idea does not pop up from nowhere, (nor did Arianism).The dispute had been going on very long, and had there been a "2-god party" the polemic had been revealed this. That is why I asked you if there are any documents to show such party existed. I am pretty sure it did not. A polytheistic idea was never an option.

See here we have a problem. I am informed that the great and good Bishops with highest religious qualifications , the very best in all of Christendom sat down as a collective and wrote a creed.

This creed set out the basic beliefs of the Christian Church, defined what it was to be a Christian, excommunicating those that didn't follow this Creed.

All very noble objectives but calling into question the competency of the aforementioned Bishops since they all signed up to this Di-ity model.

The only circumstance that this cannot be considered a di-ity model is if the 'holy spirit' was not considered a deity at Nicea 325 but becoming a deity in constantinople and then becoming part of the trinity in the 6th Century.

If we are to use this model then we see it as a simple battle of 

One Deity ( father) vs 2 Deity ( father and son) ( Holy Spirit not considered a deity)

You can see the how easily the Christian Church fell into this trap and started deifying entities whilst simultaneously trying to say they were one.

So we have make a choice they were either incompetent or forced 

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6 hours ago, A true Sunni said:

See here we have a problem. I am informed that the great and good Bishops with highest religious qualifications , the very best in all of Christendom sat down as a collective and wrote a creed.

This creed set out the basic beliefs of the Christian Church, defined what it was to be a Christian, excommunicating those that didn't follow this Creed.

All very noble objectives but calling into question the competency of the aforementioned Bishops since they all signed up to this Di-ity model.

The only circumstance that this cannot be considered a di-ity model is if the 'holy spirit' was not considered a deity at Nicea 325 but becoming a deity in constantinople and then becoming part of the trinity in the 6th Century.

If we are to use this model then we see it as a simple battle of 

One Deity ( father) vs 2 Deity ( father and son) ( Holy Spirit not considered a deity)

You can see the how easily the Christian Church fell into this trap and started deifying entities whilst simultaneously trying to say they were one.

So we have make a choice they were either incompetent or forced 

The Creed does not specify the Ghost other than that it is not created. Arianists believe both Jesus and Spirit was, so the Creed was a refutation of Arianism. The issue Holy Spirit being left open. Obtaining majority on a Creed was probably easier this way. 

Incompetent or forced? Arianism still existed, individuals still had a silent opinion of their own but many wisely accepted the descicion by the majority. After all, the Creed was only a human product.

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Everyone really seems to keep repeating themselves. And @baqar is correct regarding a lack of information (Atleast regarding information posted here). 

We have figures like athanasius, who, based on his writings, appears to be supporting of a triune God and played a significant role at nicea. But there isn't any way to see into the minds of many other bishops. We simply see that there is wide acceptance (99%?) of belief in the father, the son (who is completely God and completely human), and the Holy Spirit (doesn't clarify on the relatedness of the Holy Spirit with the father and son).

though there were many views of the divine nature of Jesus back then. Presumably there were many varying views on the Holy Spirit as well. But it didn't appear to be an objective to settle "trinity vs di-Ity" discussion. This would either be because the trinity was already accepted by everyone, or there may have been uncertainty about the role the Holy Spirit played in it's relatedness to The father and son.

but as andres said before, even in today's time there are debates and discussions and unclarity on the precise nature of relatedness of figures in the trinity. 

The main thing we can gather from nicea is that Jesus was widely accepted as being of the same substance as the Father, considered fully God and fully human. And that there is belief in the Holy Spirit. 

This statement above allows for agreement between trinitarians as well as others who are without a clear position on the Holy Ghost.

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On 5/29/2017 at 5:26 AM, andres said:

The Creed does not specify the Ghost other than that it is not created. Arianists believe both Jesus and Spirit was, so the Creed was a refutation of Arianism. The issue Holy Spirit being left open. Obtaining majority on a Creed was probably easier this way. 

Incompetent or forced? Arianism still existed, individuals still had a silent opinion of their own but many wisely accepted the descicion by the majority. After all, the Creed was only a human product.

With all respect that's a very creative interpretation. As I said I really call into question the competency of the Bishops if indeed they were basing their creed on what they weren't rather then what they were.

Now you are also accusing the Bishops of hypocrisy by signing up to something they didn't believe.

That silent group with their own opinions set Christianity down the path of embracing Trinity.

Interesting I have been looking at the usage of the term 'Son of God' in Jewish writings.

Judaism as you know does not countenance a real physical son of God ( as in Christian teachings),

but nevertheless does use the term occasionally.

It uses 'son of god' when it discusses the Messiah but also very occasionally kings.

Is it possible the real 'Arian' controversy was that Bishop Arius wanted Jesus recognised as a Messianic Son of God ( not a deity)

And the other group wanted to deify Jesus

Just a thought 

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On 5/29/2017 at 8:03 AM, iCambrian said:

Everyone really seems to keep repeating themselves. And @baqar is correct regarding a lack of information (Atleast regarding information posted here). 

We have figures like athanasius, who, based on his writings, appears to be supporting of a triune God and played a significant role at nicea. But there isn't any way to see into the minds of many other bishops. We simply see that there is wide acceptance (99%?) of belief in the father, the son (who is completely God and completely human), and the Holy Spirit (doesn't clarify on the relatedness of the Holy Spirit with the father and son).

though there were many views of the divine nature of Jesus back then. Presumably there were many varying views on the Holy Spirit as well. But it didn't appear to be an objective to settle "trinity vs di-Ity" discussion. This would either be because the trinity was already accepted by everyone, or there may have been uncertainty about the role the Holy Spirit played in it's relatedness to The father and son.

but as andres said before, even in today's time there are debates and discussions and unclarity on the precise nature of relatedness of figures in the trinity. 

The main thing we can gather from nicea is that Jesus was widely accepted as being of the same substance as the Father, considered fully God and fully human. And that there is belief in the Holy Spirit. 

This statement above allows for agreement between trinitarians as well as others who are without a clear position on the Holy Ghost.

As I said 99% signed up to a Di-ity model that persisted for over 200 years. You keep harping on about trinitarians but as I said several pages ago

Talking about the Father Son and Holy Ghost doesnt make you a Trinitarian. Its affirming a particular relationship between the Father Son and Holy Ghost that makes you a Trinitarian.

If the Trnity was accepted by everyone it would have been written in the Creed.

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On 5/29/2017 at 10:49 AM, A true Sunni said:

As I said 99% signed up to a Di-ity model that persisted for over 200 years. You keep harping on about trinitarians but as I said several pages ago

Talking about the Father Son and Holy Ghost doesnt make you a Trinitarian. Its affirming a particular relationship between the Father Son and Holy Ghost that makes you a Trinitarian.

If the Trnity was accepted by everyone it would have been written in the Creed.

I never said that the trinity was accepted by everyone.

your first statement is your own subjective opinion. The creed is too vague to be assigned a di-Ity view. It just doesn't clarify on the nature of the holy spirit

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10 minutes ago, iCambrian said:

I never said that the trinity was accepted by everyone.

your first statement is your own subjective opinion. The creed is too vague to be assigned a di-Ity view. It just doesn't clarify on the nature of the holy spirit

so they got all these guys together from all over Christendom and left the creed in a big a mess as when they started . As far as I can tell the trinity was hardly accepted by anyone. 

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On 5/29/2017 at 10:43 AM, A true Sunni said:

With all respect that's a very creative interpretation. As I said I really call into question the competency of the Bishops if indeed they were basing their creed on what they weren't rather then what they were.

Now you are also accusing the Bishops of hypocrisy by signing up to something they didn't believe.

That silent group with their own opinions set Christianity down the path of embracing Trinity.

Interesting I have been looking at the usage of the term 'Son of God' in Jewish writings.

Judaism as you know does not countenance a real physical son of God ( as in Christian teachings),

but nevertheless does use the term occasionally.

It uses 'son of god' when it discusses the Messiah but also very occasionally kings.

Is it possible the real 'Arian' controversy was that Bishop Arius wanted Jesus recognised as a Messianic Son of God ( not a deity)

And the other group wanted to deify Jesus

Just a thought 

I am not accusing the bishops that were in minority. Pragmatism is not always bad and judging people from such long ago by modern standards is problematic. Maybe it was best to accept the descision by the majority if this could end the discussion.(?) A discussion that many Christians today regard as rather unimportant. When reading documents hundreds of centuries old one must try to imagine during wich circumstances they were written. It is not all black or white. I find it problematic when the Bible or the Quran is read with the conviction that it is Gods perfect word. When you have read it and understood it in your own personal way, you must put aside your own common sence, and follow what you believe God told you was right. Which as we see differs heavily. Some Christians still do, but it is seemingly more common in the Muslim world resulting in terror and conflict between Islamic beliefs of different kinds. Maybe the bishops you regard as hypocrats actually promoted peace. And as seen from year 2017; what diffetence does it make if Arius is right or wrong? Can we not live in peace together with different opinions about the caracter of the Holy Ghost? 

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20 minutes ago, andres said:

I am not accusing the bishops that were in minority. Pragmatism is not always bad and judging people from such long ago by modern standards is problematic. Maybe it was best to accept the descision by the majority if this could end the discussion.(?) A discussion that many Christians today regard as rather unimportant. When reading documents hundreds of centuries old one must try to imagine during wich circumstances they were written. It is not all black or white. I find it problematic when the Bible or the Quran is read with the conviction that it is Gods perfect word. When you have read it and understood it in your own personal way, you must put aside your own common sence, and follow what you believe God told you was right. Which as we see differs heavily. Some Christians still do, but it is seemingly more common in the Muslim world resulting in terror and conflict between Islamic beliefs of different kinds. Maybe the bishops you regard as hypocrats actually promoted peace. And as seen from year 2017; what diffetence does it make if Arius is right or wrong? Can we not live in peace together with different opinions about the caracter of the Holy Ghost? 

We are not talking about the contents of the Bible or the Quaran. We are not talking about the Quaran or Bibles interpretation or misinterpretation .

The concept of the Trinity is not derived from the bible hence its irrelevant whats written there except as a back drop.

The Nicean Creed is very important because the original and subsequent changes gives us a snap shot in time of the predominant view of the Church.

History is written by the victors and this applies to religion as much as anything else.

Majority of Christians in 2017 are Trinitarians. It is an inconvenient observation that a significant proportion of Christians in the earliest period might not have considered Jesus a Deity.

According to the argument you are using it seems that you are saying that Arius believed Jesus was the Son of God but couldn't resolve the issue of his relationship to the Father. 

According to you they excommunicated him on this basis but didnt bother resolving the third leg of the triune. Highly doubtful

Its more likely I contend that Arius believed that Jesus was the Son of God ( Messiah - as the Jews of old used the terminology)

The split occured because the Eastern church which hadnt been influenced by 'Greekified Christianity' and all its deities wasnt prepared to make Jesus a Deity   

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2 hours ago, baqar said:

This discussion is not going anywhere.

And there seems no chance it will end.

Better to discuss it in a Christian forum where there are many more people with more knowledge of the subject.   

I suggest we call it quits.

The discussion from my point of view is purely an academic one, not one of trying to prove people right or wrong or indeed have an end.

This discussion has forced me into researching further and the more I read the more I learn. 

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7 hours ago, A true Sunni said:

so they got all these guys together from all over Christendom and left the creed in a big a mess as when they started . As far as I can tell the trinity was hardly accepted by anyone. 

This is just subjection. It's not an argument. That's all any of your posts have been throughout this entire discussion.

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3 hours ago, iCambrian said:

This is just subjection. It's not an argument. That's all any of your posts have been throughout this entire discussion.

And yours is based on wishful thinking and a revionist mind set trying to cover up for what is apparent in the written records. No actual proof of what you say just a theory based on a wish and a prayer literally

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3 hours ago, andres said:

Wrong.

What's your thought of 'son of God' being used in Jewish literature as an honorific for the Messiah.

is it possible that references to son of God in the NT meant the Messiah not the literal son of god. Only it's original meaning got lost with the Greekified Christians. We all know the Greeks & Romans created deities at the drop of a hat

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4 hours ago, A true Sunni said:

And yours is based on wishful thinking and a revionist mind set trying to cover up for what is apparent in the written records. No actual proof of what you say just a theory based on a wish and a prayer literally

I never said there was proof in my faith. But Atleast I'm willing to admit the subjective nature of my ideas, unlike you.

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55 minutes ago, iCambrian said:

I never said there was proof in my faith. But Atleast I'm willing to admit the subjective nature of my ideas, unlike you.

You have obviously not been reading what I have said or tried to understand. When a person says this is an academic debate, he is by definition admitting there are differing views on the subject and wants to explore differing view points.

In addition to that if a person makes a claim that is objective then he must be prepared to be challenged on that issue.

As I said to Baqar I am not here to convince you nor do I expect to because what we are discussing is partly an article of faith.

It is unfortunate that you are unused to these academic debates

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1 hour ago, A true Sunni said:

What's your thought of 'son of God' being used in Jewish literature as an honorific for the Messiah.

is it possible that references to son of God in the NT meant the Messiah not the literal son of god. Only it's original meaning got lost with the Greekified Christians. We all know the Greeks & Romans created deities at the drop of a hat

How could you miss that what I said was wrong, was you questioning that the first Christians regarded Jesus as a deity?

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3 hours ago, andres said:

How could you miss that what I said was wrong, was you questioning that the first Christians regarded Jesus as a deity?

Apologies I am genuinely puzzled, are saying the first Christians didnt believe that Jesus was a deity or did believe he was a deity

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