In the first installment of this two part series we presented the first portion of an online dialog between a passionate advocate for the doctrines of Oneness Pentecostalism (whose name we are not revealing) and me (Tal). Read it here: http://www.marketfaith.org/2015/09/more-one-on-one-with-a-oneness-part-1
In this section we continue the discussion where we left off. The words are presented unedited exactly as they were sent.
For more information on the history and beliefs of Oneness Pentecostalism go to the following link: http://www.marketfaith.org/the-hidden-cult-of-oneness-pentecostalism)
We begin with the Oneness Pentecostal’s comments following my last paragraph.
Sorry to inform you but the oneness Pentecostal church began on the day of Pentecost. Oh but you should know that since you’re a “scholar.” You know who else were scholars? The Pharisees were oh they knew the word alright but they never could accept the fact that Jesus Christ was very God in the flesh. (John1:14) Just like you cannot accept Gods plan of salvation. You are blinded by lies and your ignorance. Everything that you “showed” me in scripture you have taken way out of context. Don’t just read the word get an understanding of what Gods word really means. Because what you’re telling me is you have no understanding of his word. What evidence do you have that you are saved? And tell me this why when the HOLY GHOST fell in Acts the second chapter did they speak in tounges (sic)? So what you’re saying is you can choose your salvation? What you’re saying is God says that you can either speak in tounges (sic) or just believe to be saved? You’re so confused and you don’t make any sense. So which way is right? And by the way you never answered my question about the trinity. What is the name of the Father? Jesus. What is the name of the Son? Jesus. What is the name of the Holy Ghost? Jesus. Therefore that’s why we baptize in JESUS NAME. God didn’t really give us a choice on how to be saved he clearly gave us the only way to be saved. And yes I’m saying if you haven’t repented of your sins and been baptized in JESUS NAME AND RECEIVED THE HOLY GHOST you’re not saved because God said you must be born again of the water and of the spirit. Is not that what he said? Why don’t you stop trying to prove Gods word wrong and find the truth before it’s to late.
I think I have explained quite well what I believe about salvation. Salvation is “by grace through faith” in Jesus Christ and what He accomplished by His death and resurrection (Ephesians 2:8,9). That means that salvation is given to sinners who do not deserve it as a free gift. Faith means complete trust and confidence in Jesus. I have put my faith in Jesus so I know I am saved. I don’t need any more proof than that. He said it and I believe it. It is not dependent on baptism or tongues or anything else. The mistake the Pharisees made was that they required meticulous adherence to the Old Testament Law, something the New Testament said was not possible. Later the Judaizers in the early church wanted to require Gentiles to become Jews by circumcision before they could be saved. The Apostles said that was not necessary (Acts 15) and Paul condemned all forms of legalism that added anything to the Gospel of salvation by grace alone (Galatians 1).
You asked about Jesus’ statement in John: “Jesus answered, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.’” John 3:5 (KJV)
Again, you are taking this verse out of its context (something you accuse me of doing). I would contend that this passage, like Acts 2:38, cannot be used to prove the necessity of baptism for salvation. This is true mainly because there is no reason in the context to assume that baptism is what Jesus was talking about. He never mentions it. So what then was he referring to? There are two possible answers.
One is that he was using “water” as a synonym for the Spirit. This makes sense because the conjunction, “of water and Spirit” ties them together as one element in the phrase, and in other contexts He refers to the “Living Water”. (John 4:10-11; 7:38).
The other possible meaning is that Jesus was contrasting physical birth (“water”) to rebirth by the spirit. This is a possible solution because it fits the context. In verse 4 Nicodemus asks, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb (physical birth), and be born?” Jesus answers with verse 5 (“Except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.”) followed immediately, and in the same breath, by verse 6… “That which is born of the flesh is flesh (physical birth); and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit (rebirth).”
As for the Oneness doctrine of God, if God is only one person (Jesus) then you have some serious difficulty explaining some important passages in the New Testament. For instance, how do you explain the fact that all three divine persons were present simultaneously at Jesus’ baptism?
21 “Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 22 And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like a dove upon him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, ‘Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.’” (Luke 3: 21-22 [KJV]. See also Matthew 3:16-17; Mark 1:9-11; John 1:32 [John the Baptist witnessed it!])
You can see the problem here. Did Jesus, the man, disappear from the water and turn into a dove when the Holy Spirit came? Did Jesus throw His voice into heaven when the Father spoke testifying to Jesus’ Sonship? From the Oneness perspective this event is inexplicable and absurd.
Also, how does the Oneness concept of God explain Jesus’ many recorded prayers to the Father (see Matthew 26:36-44, Mark 14:32-39, Luke 22:46; John 11:41-42; 12:27-28; 17:1-26, et.al.)? Was Jesus praying to Himself? That implies that Jesus had some sort of split personality, talking to Himself.
And why did He teach His disciples… “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven (who IS in heaven – NASB), Hallowed be thy name” (Matthew 6:9 – KJV)? Why would He tell His followers to pray to the Father in heaven when, if Oneness doctrine is correct, the Father was standing right in front of them?
I believe the reason Oneness Pentecostals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, and other groups cannot accept the Trinity is not because it is not biblical. It surely must be true simply because either the Father, the Son, and The Holy Spirit are all God or the New Testament makes no sense (see Matt. 28:19-20; 1 Cor. 8:6; 12:4-6; 2 Cor. 1:21- 22; 13:14; 1 Pet. 1:2). The problem, rather, lies with the fact that those adherents do not understand the infinitude and eternality of God. By definition only one being could be both infinite and eternal. There is only one infinity and only one eternity. Thus, we assert that the one infinite and eternal Being is the one and only God.
That being said, the Bible teaches that, in some way, God exists infinitely and eternally and in three personal seats of distinct consciousness (personalities) which He has revealed to us by the designations of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They are all infinite and they are all eternal. Three infinities and three eternities equals only one infinity and one eternity. Thus, God is One God in Three Persons.
Sir, I have tried to engage in a civil and reasonable dialog with you online. However, for some reason you choose to stoop to name-calling and invectives. I have answered your questions honestly and with biblical evidence for my positions while you have never answered any of mine.
Have you forgotten what Scripture says:
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” (Galatians 5: 22-23)
And: “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity (love), I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.” (1 Cor. 13: 1)
And: “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” (1 Peter 3: 15)
If you wish to continue our discussion I am very willing, however, I request that you please moderate your current tone or I feel we should terminate our dialog.
God has no equal. IS Jesus Lord or is God LORD explain that. Or is Jesus our saviour or is God our saviour? I believe as the bible (sic) says that there is one God an three manifestations of one God Not Three personalities. Tell me then when the Holy Ghost overshadowed Mary is he the Father. Because if so there’s war in heaven because the Holy ghost (sic) messed with Gods woman. Yup see it don’t make sense. Try explaining that. You can’t.
The answer to your first two questions is “YES”. Jesus is Lord and Savior because He is God (equal to but not the same Person as the Father or the Holy Spirit – they are three infinite and eternal Persons in the one infinite and eternal Godhead.).
As for the third question, the Scriptures clearly say that Jesus (God the Son) was miraculously conceived with Mary by the Holy Spirit, not God the Father (Matt. 1:18-20). That being said, your implication that “the Holy ghost (sic) messed with Gods (sic) woman” is nonsense and blasphemous because there was no sexual element involved in the process. It was a “virgin birth!” The Holy Spirit acted in complete concert with the Father.
Sorry for bothering you. You’re obviously blinded by your false doctrine. There really is no need to continue this discussion with you. All I hope is that God would lead you to the truth. He’s God in the Father he’s God in the son and he’s God in the Holy Ghost and all these three are one. You need to read the book by David K Bernard “the oneness of God.” One of these days I hope that you would allow God to fill you with his Spirit his way not yours. By the way God doesn’t have more than one Personality. Think about it if we had more than one we would be called crazy. And come on God has no equal if you say that Jesus is equal to God then you’re saying there’s more than one. If they’re not the same the then there different right? See you make no sense. You’re so confused. I feel sorry for you.
I am sorry you feel we must discontinue our dialog, but I agree. I appreciate your concern for my soul. I am sure your are sincere. But I am perfectly confident that I my beliefs are biblical and true. I believe I am saved because I put my faith in Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior. That’s all I need.
May you have that assurance also.
And may God bless you in the future.
© 2015 Tal Davis