Why Calvinists And Catholics Share The Nicene Faith

The Nicene Creed has defined historical orthodoxy for centuries. It is broad enough to include Calvinists and Roman Catholics. Despite all of our differences and even some anathemas, we can ecumenically rejoice in our shared Nicene faith. We may lodge major theological objections toward one another. Roman Catholics may be offended by the low Marian theology exhibited throughout Protestant churches, while we Protestants are aghast at the reverence for the Mother of God. Yet Calvinists and Catholics share the Nicene faith. I am not focusing so much on our differences.…

Why Christians Should Empty Themselves of Kenotic Christology

God became a man. As we read through the New Testament, we will encounter what boggled even the mind of Paul the apostle. He wrote in 1st Timothy 3:16 of the “mystery of godliness.” How could Christ be both truly man and truly God? Some have attempted to resolve this mystery by appealing to what is known as Kenotic Christology. Kenotic Christology is the doctrine that when God became a man, he laid aside his divine attributes such as omnipotence, omnipresence, omniscience, et cetera. Jesus possessed God’s consciousness, but without…

Assessing The Firepower of The Reformed Arsenal: In Defense of William Lane Craig

There is a tendency amongst Reformed theologians to police other theologians, to dub themselves as detectives for Christ, seemingly exposing Christians who hold different views. They will often use pious language to justify this practice, arguing that they are “contending for the faith,” out of “pastoral concern for the body.” It is easy to recognize that this could be a veil for more nefarious motives, such as building traffic, finding an outlet for anger and condescension, or just boredom. Dr. William Lane Craig has been targeted on several occasions, perhaps…

Saving Christmas From Christological Contradictions

Thieves love Christmas. We sometimes hear stories about a green man who lives in the mountains and steals all of the Christmas presents just to take all of the joy out of this special holiday. Yet even if all of the Christmas presents are gone, Christians testify that there is a greater meaning. Christmas marks the anniversary of the day of the incarnation, when God became man to set the world right and call his people into himself. He promised that this world will be made new, that the lion…

Is The Oneness Versus Trinity Debate Theological Nitpicking?

Followers of this blog will know that I have spent a lot of time writing about Oneness Pentecostalism, because, as I pointed out in my article My Conversion From Oneness Pentecostalism To Biblical Christianity, I used to be a Oneness Pentecostal and I think that this issue is very important. However, some Christians have replied to my posts defending the trinity by suggesting that this debate is just theological nitpicking. Trinitarians believe that there is one God who is eternally present in three persons. Oneness Pentecostals believe that there is…

My Conversion From Oneness Pentecostalism To Biblical Christianity

Recently, I have been publishing articles and podcasts about the topic of Oneness Pentecostalism. In fact, it is one of my favorite topics, even if speaking only as a theological and intellectual pursuit. However, there is a much more personal aspect to the issue of Oneness Pentecostalism that inspires me to write about it. Some of my readers may discern that I was a Oneness Pentecostal many years ago before converting to biblical Christianity. Now, what is Oneness Pentecostalism? You might think that I am referring to the broad charismatic…

Does The Old Testament Favor Oneness Pentecostalism?

We start with the Old Testament and read the New Testament in light of that. That is what we often hear from Oneness Pentecostals who are attempting to mount an argument against trinitarian theology. They will say that trinitarians are starting with the New Testament and reading the Old in light of it, and that is an incorrect methodology. If you read the Bible from cover to cover, perhaps the most crucial theme that emerged is that God is inescapably one. When you get to the New Testament, that concept…

Answering A Few Common Oneness Pentecostal Arguments

Oneness Pentecostals are vehement anti-trinitarians who commonly maintain that the doctrine of the trinity states that there are three gods. Of course, this is a mischaracterization. If an individual believes that there are three gods, then they have, in effect, denied the doctrine of the trinity. The doctrine of the trinity states that there is one God who is eternally present in three persons. So, what is Oneness Pentecostalism? While they may be anti-trinitarians, they are committed to the truth that Jesus is God. They accomplish this by adhering to…

Christians Need The Trinity

How many angels can dance on the head of a pin? I am not aware of any theologian who has investigated this matter, and unless there is some discourse in philosophical theology of which I am bereft, this is probably not a question that we can answer with our intellectual or theological resources, and there probably is no answer. As CS Lewis pointed out, many of our great theological questions are likely nonsense, as if to ask, ‘How many hours are in a mile? Is yellow square or round?’ When…

Does John 17 Teach Oneness Or Trinity?

The gospel of John is the most significant and often criticized biography of the historical Jesus. It receives vociferous attacks from the unbelieving community as well as revisions and reinterpretations from proponents of Christological heresies. It is the clearest possible testimony to the doctrine of the trinity and the deity of Christ, and so, throughout church history, men have labored to distort its’ true teachings, either by undermining the credibility of the narrative, or by reinterpreting what is written such that the original message is totally lost. The 17th chapter…

What Is Wrong With The Oneness View Of God?

Who is God? What can we know about the nature of God? Christians have classically said that there is only one God who is eternally present in three persons. However, at the Council of Nicea, which arose in response to the Arian heresy (the view that Jesus is merely a creature), there were a few oneness representatives. They held to a modalist conception of God. This entails that there is one God who is one person. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit do not represent different persons within…

Was There A Time When The Son Was Not?

Was there a time when the Son was not? This is the view was represented at the Council of Nicaea by Eusebius of Nicomedia. It was regarded as so disdainful by the presiding theologians that they interrupted his speech, robbed him of the manuscript for his lecture and tore it to pieces. For he was advocating the view that Jesus was merely a creature of God’s. He was suggesting that Jesus was not YHWH. He was suggest that there was a time when the Son was not. This belief erupted…

Does William Lane Craig Have An Orthodox Christology?

Gossip is a feature of the world from which Christians are called to abstain. For we cannot spread rumors about people, attribute statements to them, and misrepresent them, especially without knowledge and behind their back. When we do that, we are guilty not only of our own sin, but of enticing others to do it as well, because they heard the information from you, and now they are spreading it to other people. You acquired your information in the same way that they did, by hearing someone else spread it,…

How Could Jesus Be Both God And Man?

One of the most primitive of the theological quagmires that have arisen in the Christian movement is: how could Jesus be both God and man? This question has come as both a mystery that the theologian would meditate upon or a serious challenge the Christian faith. After all, the Islamic theologian will protest that God could not become a man. God could not be a baby in a manger. God could not suffer death on a cross. How could God reduce himself to such a status? How could Jesus be…

Is The Angel Of The Lord The Second Person Of The Trinity?

Non-trinitarians object that the doctrine of the trinity is a post-apostolic phenomenon. It was developed in the latter stages of the development of the early church, but it has no real roots in the beliefs of the apostles, much less the prophets of old. The YHWH of the Old Testament, they will say, was inescapably unitarian. However we do see a certain plurality within the Godhead when we begin talking about this issue of the angel of the Lord. The angel of the Lord is a figure who is identified…

What Does John 1:1 Mean?

The gospel of John is perhaps the most important biography of Jesus, with regard to our understanding of who Jesus was. John wrote his prologue (1:1-18) knowing that it was the lens through which one reads the rest of his gospel. One must consider the teachings in the prologue when they read any other passage in the gospel of John. This article is going to zoom in on the first verse, which reads, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”…

Are The Father And The Holy Spirit The Same Person?

Christians often might be confused about the distinction between God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. After all, does the Bible not refer to the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of the Father (Matthew 10:20). It refers to him also as the Spirit of Christ (Romans 8:9). Now in my article Is Jesus The Holy Spirit? I refuted the modalistic idea that Jesus and the Holy Spirit were the same person. I turn my guns now to the separate question: are the Father and the Holy Spirit the same…

What Does Philippians 2:5-8 Mean?

I usually avoid exegetical articles for the sole reason that they do not attract a lot of attention. Most of my articles are more topical, and like my cohort Evan Minton of CerebralFaith.blogspot.com, I weave in the relevant selected Scriptures throughout. So in today’s article, What Does Philippians 2:5-8 Mean? I am doing something a little different. I am simply looking at the text of this passage, summoning the theological nuances to shine forth so that the Holy Spirit may illuminate this passage for you, and for me. I would…

What Is A Good Analogy For The Trinity?

When we want to explain something, especially complex topics, we often want to appeal to analogies and illustrations as tools to help us illustrate our point. This seems to carry over into theology. Since the doctrine of the trinity is often built up as something so complicated that no mere mortal could ever understand any aspect of, we scramble desperately for a way to relay this divine truth to new Christians. But as we tell them how complicated it is, and how they just need to take it on faith,…

Is Jesus God In The Gospel of Mark?

Is Jesus God in The Gospel of Mark? It is sometimes asserted that because the Gospel of Mark is the oldest surviving gospel, that it is the least theologically loaded. While Jesus may have said, “Before Abraham was, I am,” in John, chapter eight verse 58, he made no comparable claims in Mark. Mark’s rendering of Jesus is docile and tame. He did not make grand claims about himself. Sure, he was the King of Israel, the promised Messiah, that is not in doubt. But the argument suggests that he…