The Bible teaches the doctrine of the Trinity

On Facebook I have read some comments that deny the doctrine of the Trinity.  I wrote the following comment to provide some basic Bible evidence that the doctrine of the Trinity most certainly is taught by the Bible.

Those who will take the time to carefully study the Bible itself, following the 24 rules of interpretation I have given in the October, 2010 archives at Real Bible Study, will learn that though the history of the doctrine of the Trinity as it developed in the “church” shows one means of deriving the doctrine, the better means is to see that the doctrine is what is taught in the Bible itself.
 
The doctrine of the Trinity is not named as such in the Bible.  There are many things Bible-believing Christians understand in and from the Bible by terms that are not found in the Bible itself.  You will not find the term “rapture” in the Bible, but the doctrinal teaching is definitely there.  You won’t find the term “second coming” in the Bible either, but the doctrine is there.
 
The doctrine of the Trinity is derived from a careful study of the Bible by means of necessary inference.
 
I have given the Bible evidence for the Biblical doctrine of the Trinity in both The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge and in my just-released Bible study software available for use in the e-Sword Bible study software program, under the title The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury.
 
Facebook is not the best venue for discussing the topic, because the evidence requires longer posts for accurate discussion.  I can more easily discuss Bible doctrine at my Real Bible Study website.  I will, therefore, post this comment there.
 
But in brief, I would say that the Bible clearly teaches the deity of Jesus Christ.  Jesus is called God at John 20:28.  From that passage if you check into the cross references I have provided you will see that Jesus is called God elsewhere at John 1:1;  John 5:18;  John 8:24;  Isaiah 44:6;  Isaiah 45:21-23;  Matthew 1:23;  Matthew 14:33;  Romans 9:5;  Ephesians 5:5;  Philippians 2:6, 10, 11;  2 Thessalonians 1:12;  Titus 2:13;  Hebrews 1:8;  2 Peter 1:1;  1 John 5:20.
 
The Holy Spirit is called God in Acts 5:3, 4.
 
That the Holy Spirit is a person, not merely an influence, is demonstrated by the fact that the Holy Spirit can be grieved (Ephesians 4:30).
 
So, there are three persons who are each called God in the Bible:  the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit.
 
Jesus Christ is not the Father, but was sent by the Father (John 3:17;  Galatians 4:4).  They are, therefore, two separate persons, not the same person.  When Jesus prayed to the Father, He surely was not praying to Himself (John 11:41, 42;  John 14:16;  John 16:26;  John 17:1, 5).
 
At this present time, the Bible teaches, Jesus Christ is in heaven in the form of a man (1 Timothy 2:5), where He is our mediator.  Therefore, Jesus Christ in heaven is a separate person from God the Father.  The Bible teaches that Jesus Christ will return to this earth in the same form as He left this earth, in human form, as declared most emphatically in Acts 1:11.
 
Therefore, by necessary inference, we understand from the Bible that there are three  persons who are each called God, so we speak of the fact that there is one God, who exists in three persons, such that we must conclude there are three persons in the Godhead.  This is the teaching of Scripture.  This doctrine of one God in three persons is given the name or called the doctrine of the Trinity.
If you have questions, or information to the contrary, raise a question or post your contrary evidence in the comment section below.
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Daily Bible Nugget #426, 1 John 2:3

The Nugget:

1Jn 2:3  And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.

My Comment:

In my high school Sunday school class of many years ago, one of my pupils, Peggy Roberts, asked a most insightful question.  She asked, “Mr. Smith, why is the plural ‘commandments’ used here, not the singular?” She remarked that she was well aware of the one “new commandment” Jesus gave (John 13:34), but she wondered what are the rest of the commandments? Her question led me to a multi-year study of this matter, and resulted in the extensive note I have placed at 1 John 2:3 listing all the commandments of Christ I could find in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge and in my newest resource, released one month ago, The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury. I have told “the rest of the story” in that note.

Back when I was in high school, even still more years ago, I made a study of the book of 1 John, following the directions I have since placed on this site in the category to the right, “How to Study the Bible.” I placed a note in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge that is retained in The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury at 1 John 5:13.  I have been sharing that note, point by point, now over some period of time, in these Daily Bible Nuggets.

Our assurance of eternal life is not dependent upon our feelings. It is not a “hope so” salvation.  We do not need to wait until we die to find out if we were right.  John gives us several marks of true believers in his first epistle.

This assurance is grounded upon the individual believer possessing the marks of a true believer discussed throughout this epistle.

Here is the outline itself:

A true believer lives:

(1) in constant fellowship with God, 1 Jn 1:3; 1 Jn 1:7; 1 Jn 2:6,

(2) true to the Gospel, 1 Jn 2:24,

(3) with love for others, 1 Jn 3:18, 19; 1 Jn 4:7,

(4) in obedience to God, +**1 Jn 2:3 note. 1 Jn 3:23; 1 Jn 5:2, 3, 4, 5,

(5) untainted by the world, 1 Jn 2:15, 16, 17; 1 Jn 5:4, 5,

(6) consistently victorious over Satan, 1 Jn 3:8, 9; 1 Jn 4:4; 1 Jn 5:18,

(7) concerned about souls, 1 Jn 5:16; see +*Jas 5:20,

(8) assured of personal salvation, 1 Jn 4:17; **1 Jn 5:13.

How can we “keep his commandments” if we do not know what they are?

John himself summarizes the commandments of Christ by boiling them down to just two:

(1) That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ,

(2) and love one another, as he gave us commandment (1 John 3:23).

John is very clear that if we truly believe on  Christ, we will love one another. He gives that as one of the marks of being a true believer.  If we truly have love for one another, we will welcome each other, or (as expressed in Romans 15:7) we will “receive one another.” We won’t shun one another. We won’t disparage one another.  We will listen to one another. We will learn from one another, we will share insights and concerns with one another and be blessed by fellowship with one another. We will help one another as appropriate and as opportunity affords.  If this is not our practice, then it may be that we do not truly believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, these practices that evidence genuine belief in Jesus Christ are sadly lacking in many places,  places that worship God but have not taken care to structure for fellowship. Be sure to always welcome strangers and newcomers to the fellowship you attend.  You never know what blessing you may be to them, or what blessing they may become to you (Hebrews 13:1, 2).

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Daily Bible Nugget #425, John 8:12

The Nugget:

John 8:12  Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

My Comment:

I took some time today to answer several of the alleged “Contradictions in the Bible” being posted by one or more Muslims in the “Islam and Christianity Debate Group.”

Here is the proposed “contradiction” proposed by Uthman Muhammad Aboki which I just addressed:

1st Timothy 6/16 “…(GOD) dwelling in the LIGHT which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen nor can see…” CONTRADICTS 1ST KINGS 8/12 : “Then spake Solomon, the Lord said that He would dwell in the THICK DARKNESS.”

In my answer below I addressed the contradiction thematically rather than directly.  The direct answer would be that 1 Timothy 6:16 addresses where God permanently dwells, which Paul speaks of as “the light which no man can approach unto.”  I see no problem there.  In contrast, 1 Kings 8:12 speaks of the fact that the Lord said He would dwell in the thick darkness.”  Where is the thick darkness where God would dwell?  In the Holy of Holies in the completed Temple Solomon would build, in a cloud above the mercy seat. Two different settings, thus two quite different aspects of His dwelling are spoken of, but this is not a contradiction, but a distinction as to place and manner of dwelling.

My Answer:

Once again, a supposed “contradiction” reveals a rather superficial reading of the Bible.
 
The themes of “light” and “darkness” are quite prominent in the Bible.
 
I am reminded of the Ninth Plague of Darkness in Egypt:
 
Exodus 10:22  And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days:
Exodus 10:23  They saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days: but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.
 
I am reminded of the cloudy pillar, which brought darkness to the Egyptians in pursuit of the Israelites, and gave light by night to the Israelites:
 
Exodus 14:19  And the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of the cloud went from before their face, and stood behind them:
Exodus 14:20  And it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel; and it was a cloud and darkness to them, but it gave light by night to these: so that the one came not near the other all the night.
 
There is even a very significant moral truth related to these contrasting themes of light and darkness expressed in the book of Proverbs:
 
Proverbs 4:18  But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.
Proverbs 4:19  The way of the wicked is as darkness: they know not at what they stumble.
 
This corresponds to the condition of those who are lost in darkness and refuse to see the light, compared to those who truly seek the Lord by reading and studying His written Word in the Bible, which is the source of spiritual light (Psalm 119:130),
 
Proverbs 28:5  Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all things.
 
Psalm 119:130  The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple.
 
On this very theme our Lord Jesus Christ gave a most serious warning,
 
Luke 11:35  Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness.
 
Mat 6:23  But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
 
John 8:12  Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
 
Joh 3:18  He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
Joh 3:19  And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
 
Make very sure that it cannot be said of you that you love darkness rather than light!
 
 
 
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Daily Bible Nugget #424, John 17:17

The Nugget:

John 17:17  Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.  (KJV)

Joh 17:17 Make them holy by the true word: your word is the true word. (Basic English Bible)

My Comment:

The Bible claims to be the literal word of God.  The Bible claims to be true.  One might argue that it is not valid for a Book to testify in its own behalf.  That is an invalid argument on the very surface.  A person accused of a crime in a court of law is allowed to testify in his or her own behalf.  The real issue is, can the claim of the Bible to be true be sustained?

Once again, I ventured back to view the Pew Research article that investigated why some Americans left religion behind, and found in the comment section two more interesting comments that are to a degree typical of some who reject the Bible:

Ron Lee • 2 days ago

 

There is no logical reason for anyone to accept your god(s), mythology, or the Christian Bible as “truth” over any others.

At least Ron Lee knew enough to capitalize “Christian” and “Bible” which is better knowledge of the proper conventions of written English than I have seen most Christian posters on the Internet and Facebook demonstrate or put to use.  Take it from a retired English teacher:  the word “Bible” when it refers to the Christian Bible is always capitalized!

However, the truthfulness or validity of Ron’s claim cannot be established.  I have whole shelves of books here in my personal library that present very strong evidence to the contrary.  I do not know anything about Ron Lee, but if this is the opinion he holds, he most likely falls into the category of unbelievers and skeptics that have never seriously read and studied a scholarly work written in defense of the Bible and its claims.

Unfortunately, some of the best books on subjects like this go out of print.  The best book I have ever encountered on this subject is A Lawyer Examines the Bible by Irwin H. Linton, published, actually reprinted, by Baker Book House about 1969. An important feature of Linton’s book is that he cites the scholarly arguments of the greatest apologists of the past in enough detail to convey the full strength of their arguments.

Another volume in an altogether different vein is titled Why Christianity of All Religions? by Hendrik Kraemer, a solid top scholar in the field of world religions, a work published by the Westminster Press in 1962.  Hendrik Kraemer has written a number of other books, including The Christian Message in a Non-Christian World and World Cultures and World Religions:  the Coming Dialogue.  Hendrik Kraemer, former professor of the history of religions in the University of Leiden, the Netherlands, received his doctor’s degree in Oriental Languages, Cultures, and Religions from Leiden University.

So, for someone on the Internet to post a comment saying “There is no logical reason for anyone to accept…the Christian Bible as ‘truth’ over any others” would indicate the poster may not have done his homework before making such a claim.

Another poster commented:

Anonymous • 2 days ago

 

I left Christianity for the same reason I don’t believe any other religion; “if you can’t show it you don’t know it.” Aron Ra, And every religion claims some special knowledge about some deity/s and/or an afterlife that they have absolutely no evidence of. “That which is presented without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.” Christopher Hitchen

 

I left “Faith” before I knew these people existed. All it took was a little probing to discover everything I was taught in church was complete conjecture. It had no foundation in reality at all.

If this “Anonymous” poster is stating the truth, it appears that what he was taught in church did not register, or was inadequate.  That ought to alert all pastors and Christian readers here that every church must do a better job of teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ, of teaching Christian evidences, of teaching the Bible and how to read it and study it for yourself, and the need to teach the evidences which confirm the truth of the Bible.

As a public high school English teacher, I told my school administrators, “If the student did not learn, the teacher did not teach.”  They were amazed that I would ever say such a thing, especially since I was the Union Representative for the school!  The same principle holds for the Church:  if the student did not learn, then the Church did not teach!  You may need to re-focus your Christian education program at your church so that this does not happen, or happens very rarely.

“Anonymous” claims what was taught in church “had no foundation in reality at all.”

You may be very sure that whoever “Anonymous” might actually be, this person was not a pupil in my Sunday school class, or in the Bible Discussion Club I was asked to sponsor by the school administration at Cass Technical High School in Detroit.

Everyone involved in Christian ministry at any level needs to learn better how to present content, not pablum, when it comes to teaching and sharing the Gospel.

The foundation in reality Anonymous somehow missed is the historical fact of the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the tomb on the third day, the most attested and documented historical event of all history (1 Corinthians 15:1, 2, 3, 4) before the age of the printing press.

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Daily Bible Nugget #423, 1 Peter 3:15

The Nugget:

1Pe 3:15  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: (KJV)

1Pe 3:15 But give honour to Christ in your hearts as your Lord; and be ready at any time when you are questioned about the hope which is in you, to give an answer in the fear of the Lord and without pride; (Basic English Bible)

My Comment:

Reading this verse ought to encourage us to become better prepared to answer the questions others will have about our faith in God and the Bible.

In my own circle of  friends and acquaintances, and perhaps in your own circle, not many are atheists or agnostics or just simply nonbelievers.  But sincere and sometimes very committed people are “out there” who do not share our faith in God and the Bible.  I find they are very prominent on Internet sites that happen to present an article that pertains to religious faith or the lack of it.

I visited the Pew Research site again today and found the following response to a sincere Christian’s prior appropriate comment on the issues being discussed there:

Anonymous22 hours ago

[the only question that matters in the end is “what have you done with my Son?” He came to forgive (take punishment) for sins]

And..
[I undertand people leaving religion, but within the Bible shows why the world is in its mess and the solution for the individual. ]

You’re making the mistake of assuming there’s any validity to the bible. All your points are based on you concluding that the bible has merit.
The question you should be asking yourself is why you think the bible has any more truth to it, than all the other religions.
Why does what your family believe, and your place of birth determine what religious beliefs you happen to hold.
Is this the real way that truth works? Imagine if we had Indian geology and Chinese physics, and middle eastern chemistry. We’d rightly laugh and say that the truth doesn’t work that way.
But this is exactly what we see when it comes to religion. If you live in Iran, you’re probably a shiite Muslim. If you live in Pakistan, you’re very likely to be a Sunni Muslim. If you live in the US, you’re likely to be a Christian, a protestant Christian in the south, a Catholic Christian in the north. If you live in India, you’re probably an Hindu. If your parents are Jewish, you’re probably Jewish. If they’re Sikh, you’re probably a Sikh.
Notice the pattern?

Note that right from the start, the Christian is challenged by the non-Christian’s comment:

You’re making the mistake of assuming there’s any validity to the bible. All your points are based on you concluding that the bible has merit.

The question you should be asking yourself is why you think the bible has any more truth to it, than all the other religions.

That is the question those of us who are Bible-believing Christians need to be able to answer.  It is my hope that the church you attend is a Bible-believing, Bible-teaching church that teaches the answer to this challenge. This is what the subject of apologetics is about.  Well, if your church, your pastor, your youth group leader or sponsor, your Sunday school teacher is not teaching you about this, you can learn about it here by reading what I post, and by posting your own questions you want answered in the comment section below.

Is there any validity to the Bible? Does the Bible merit our belief?

You can be very sure that the Bible has validity and it merits our belief.

To support this claim, I invite you to consider that (1) there are internal evidences that demonstrate the truth of the Bible.  These include (a) the internal consistency of the Bible, a Book, which is a collection of 66 books, written by approximately 40 different authors over a period of more than 1500 years, as I recall.  No other collection of religious writings written over a similar span of time can be collected which demonstrates the kind of internal consistency or internal unity found in the Bible.  This internal consistency is seen by the fact that there are no provable contradictions in the Bible.  The unity of the Bible is seen when we consider that it is possible to profitably study the Bible by means of cross reference Bible study, a kind of Bible study you may not have ever done yourself, but I invite you to do so by getting and learning to use my new Bible software program titled The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury.

Another internal evidence that demonstrates the truth and validity of the Bible  is the (b) internal evidence of its historicity.  This is seen in the claim of its writers to eye-witness authority (see Luke 1:1, 2, 3, 4;  Luke 3:1, 2;  John 19:35;  Acts 2:22;  Acts 26:24, 25, 26;  1 John 1:1, 2, 3;  2 Peter 1:16).

This is seen and proven by what are called un-designed coincidences. The reality of the business and concerns reported in the New Testament give evidence, upon careful reading of the documents themselves, that they refer to real people engaged in real concerns which are not the mere invention of a fiction writer or the inventor of a forgery. See my note at Acts 12:12 in The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge or The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury for the full evidence.

As you might imagine, much more can be said or written in defense of the validity of the Bible, but at just over 850 words, this might be enough to whet the appetite for more on the part of any person who really wants to explore, learn, and know the truth about the Bible.

 

 

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Daily Bible Nugget #422, Jeremiah 29:11

The Nugget:

Jer 29:13  And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

My Comment:

I read a portion of some research conducted by Pew Research today as posted on the Drudge Report about “Why Americas Nones Left Religion Behind.”  I assume that America’s “Nones” has to do with the growing number of people who when asked in a survey about their religious affiliation answer “None.”

That indicates we have a large and growing “mission field” right here in the United States of America.

The survey respondents indicated that one of the major reasons they left their religious belief behind is that when they went to college, they learned more about science, and this convinced them that religion is without scientific basis and no longer worthy of their belief or commitment.

It is just such reports as this one that demonstrate that those in the church need to wake up to reality and learn more about the solid basis that exists for belief in the Bible.

And that is why all Christians must become knowledgeable about the subject of apologetics.

Anyone who is an agnostic or an atheist is misinformed or not informed about the basis for true Christian faith, and the basis for belief in the Bible.

To read the comments below the article about the Pew Research is quite depressing. I don’t feel depressed very often. Almost never. But to read some of the flimsy reasons given by unbelievers is depressing because had they been better informed about the Bible and its Christ they could not have caved in to the anti-theistic nonsense paraded as logic and science in our day.

Let me share just one brief comment of a great many that I just read:

In my opinion folks are getting pretty tired of hearing the big lie about Adam and Eve and the apple story and that snakes don’t talk. And being dammed to hell in the burning lake of fire for just about everything you do wrong in the eyes of the church. Also they are beginning to realize that this earth is way older than 6,000 years. [Gracie Gragg]

Any informed Bible reader knows that whatever fruit it was that Eve chose to eat, it most surely was not an apple.  Such an idea does not occur in the Bible.  There is no “apple story” there.

But how about the assertion that “snakes don’t talk”?

Answering this issue gets far more complicated. It requires a knowledge base beyond that possessed by most Christians, including their pastors.  Of course, one might argue that since God miraculously enabled Balaam’s donkey to talk to him, then it might not be entirely out of the realm of possibility that a “snake” could be enabled to talk too. But this answer is not satisfactory. Unbelievers would argue they  do not believe the story about Balaam and his donkey either.

There is a better answer, and it involves understanding the figure of speech employed at Genesis 3:1.  It is the figure Hypocatastasis–the one your English teacher in high school or college failed to teach you about (unless you were in my English class, and you were listening).  In my experience, English teachers do not know about this figure of speech either.  Hypocatastasis is a kind of third degree of emphasis, simile being the first, and metaphor being the second.  Satan (2 Corinthians 11:3;  Ezekiel 28:13;  Revelation 20:2), who made his appearance as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14), is called a serpent by the figure of speech Hypocatastasis just as Herod is called “that fox” by Jesus (Luke 13:32) in another instance of the very emphatic figure of speech Hypocatastasis.  For a much fuller discussion see Appendix 19 of the Companion Bible.  Just as Herod was certainly not a literal fox, so Satan was not a literal snake, but possessed the character denoted and emphasized by the figure.

Neither is everyone “damned to hell” for just about everything they do.  Those who end up in the dreadful lake of fire for all eternity are there because of one thing:  unbelief, which includes the idea of disobedience.  Unbelief involves failure to believe in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

For various reasons and excuses, some do not believe in our Lord Jesus Christ.  For the most part, it boils down to the fact that they do not really know the truth about Jesus Christ as He is revealed in the Bible. What they think they know is a caricature of Jesus Christ, not the truth about Jesus Christ,  a caricature derived and assembled from snippets heard in contemporary culture and other unreliable sources, not what the Bible reveals about Him.

The solution is two-fold, at least.  First, Christians need to better communicate the truth of the Gospel to those in their circle of influence who will listen to them.  Second, those who are unbelievers really ought to read the New Testament carefully for themselves by doing what I have here called Real Bible Study.

Belief in the Bible does not require anyone to believe in the Young Earth Theory, that the earth is just 6000 years old.  This theory is most likely mistaken in its understanding of the Biblical and geological evidence.  Though many sincere Bible-believing Christians hold to a belief in the Young Earth Theory, the reaction of the unbeliever quoted above shows that such a probably mistaken view is a deterrent to faith in the Bible and its Christ.  Surely such a view is not directly taught by the Bible, and should not be attributed to the Bible.

 

Posted in Apologetics Issues--Agnosticism, Apologetics Issues--Atheism, Bible Historicity and Validity, Daily Bible Nuggets | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury features explained

The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury is unique among Bible study reference resources in that it is not generic, but content-filled. It is a resource where you can find answers to your Bible questions.  When more than one point of view is supported by equally qualified, equally gifted and devoted Bible scholars, I have attempted to give the evidence each point of view marshals in its support.  I have tended to give more attention to the “minority view,” particularly when the minority view seems to have the better evidence from Scripture in its support.

Below is the Preface to my new work, The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury or UCRT.  This resource is available only from www.eStudysource.com as a Premium Module which works with the new e-Sword version 11 free Bible study software program available at www.e-Sword.net where on the top of the Home Page you will see a “Download” button. The e-Sword Bible software will run on a wide variety of platforms and devices, whether the PC, the Mac, and many portable or mobile devices. Thus my UCRT will work on all of these.

The Ultimate Cross-Reference Treasury

Prepared by

Jerome H. Smith

Copyright © 2016 by Jerome H. Smith

The Ultimate Cross-Reference Treasury is based upon The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge Copyright © 1992 by Jerome H. Smith and Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible © 2007 by Jerome H. Smith. Produced under arrangement with Thomas Nelson, Inc., P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214.

The Ultimate Cross-Reference Treasury is essentially a new work, featuring vastly expanded and corrected cross references and notes.

Scripture quotations and notes marked LNT are taken from Malcolm L. Lavender, Lavender’s New Testament, A Literal Translation of the Robinson-Pierpont Majority Text (1995), © 2015 by R. L. Lavender. ISBN 978-0-9795014-7-0 Used by permission.

PREFACE

This new Bible study tool builds on my previous published works of cross references compiled for serious Bible study, The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, and Nelson’s Cross Reference Guide to the Bible.

Does anyone really need a still more complete work of Bible cross references than what I already produced? My personal experience is that I certainly do. I believe anyone seeking to do serious Bible study will welcome this effort to provide a new, vastly expanded, study tool for cross reference Bible study.

How is this work an improvement over what was previously provided? In no particular order, let me share just a few of the improvements I have made while expanding the cross references.

I have:

1. made these new references far more numerous and complete (see Psalm 80:9; Romans 15:7);

2. more carefully sorted the references given at many verses to more accurately reflect the connection to the associated keyword (see Genesis 26:24; Exodus 26:14; Leviticus 9:22; 26:6; Numbers 12:10; Deuteronomy 6:5; 29:18; 2 Samuel 7:23, 24; 2 Kings 13:21; 25:13; Job 8:13; Psalm 5:5; 34:6, 7; 74:20; 76:9; 92:4; 119:155; 140:13; Isaiah 32:17; 47:11; Ezekiel 14:11; Hosea 9:11; Matthew 9:2; Luke 5:26; 15:10; John 9:39; 10:10; 15:20; 2 Corinthians 11:31; 1 Timothy 6:1; 2 Timothy 1:14).

3. repeated references when the reference has application to more than one keyword in the verse, because often in study I am focusing on a very narrow or precisely defined subject or topic, and the connections that are really there would be missed if they are not given everywhere they apply (see 2 Th 3:2, where reference to +*Ps 32:7 is repeated at the keywords “delivered” and also “from”);

4. added many new keywords (see Leviticus 26:6; Numbers 12:10; Deuteronomy 29:18; 2 Chronicles 7:3; Job 8:13; Psalm 5:5; 38:1; Ezekiel 14:11; Luke 5:29; John 10:10; 15:20; 1 Timothy 6:1; 2 Timothy 1:14);

5. corrected many “clipped” or orphaned references (see at Ezekiel 23:32 thou shalt be laughed reference to Psalm 79:3 which is only relevant when reference to Psalm 79:4 is included with it; at Ezekiel 20:13 to consume reference to Deuteronomy 32:27 is clarified greatly by supplying Deuteronomy 32:26 with it; so likewise at Habakkuk 1:16 they reference to Ezekiel 28:3 which lacks relevance without including Ezekiel 28:4; similarly, Deuteronomy 26:18 reference to Ezekiel 36:25-27 has been corrected to read Ezekiel 36:25-28; at Luke 1:25 hath reference to Genesis 30:22 should have read Genesis 30:22, 23 since it is verse 23 that is relevant, a frequent occurrence from the arbitrary cutting of references in the original Treasury of Scripture Knowledge; at Acts 18:6 unto the Gentiles is clarified by adding Acts 19:9 so as to read Acts 19:8, 9; and so forth);

6. corrected many errors in the cross-references, so that it should be almost impossible for any intensive user of these references to encounter any more printing mistakes;

7. added many unique cross references never provided before in previous published material (see 2 Chronicles 6:37; Psalm 98:2; Luke 5:29), references discovered in my own study of the Bible during the nearly 25 years since the publication of The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge;

8. provided as many reciprocal references as could be found, given the time available to me (now six full years, and according to my notes, more than 2016 full days of study, morning, afternoon, and evening!). I have often thought life is too short for one person to create this even more complete study tool—but this tool is likely more complete than any similar work previously produced. The initial motivation to begin this work stems from requests made by students of the Bible asking for more references, specifically references to the Old Testament to be given for verses in the New Testament, especially for the Sermon on the Mount as given in Matthew 5—7. I am sure I have fulfilled that request, and much more.

9. provided a full enumeration of the provisions of the Abrahamic (Genesis 12:2) and Davidic (2 Samuel 7:10) Covenants and greatly expanded cross references for each provision. In studying Mr. George N. H. Peters’ work, The Theocratic Kingdom, I was motivated to study these great covenants even further in response to Peters’ well-founded Bible study suggestion in Volume 1, page 285, under “Proposition 46: The Kingdom anticipated by the Jews at the First Advent is based on the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants.” In a paragraph under Observation 1, Peters states: “Indeed, it is universally admitted, however explained afterward, that the covenants are the proper basis of future Revelation, and that they contain in an epitomized form the substance of God’s Purpose in reference to man’s Salvation, the Messiah’s Kingdom and glory, and the perfected Redemption from the curse. Hence, men of all shades of opinion agreeing in this matter, it is essential for any one who desires to become a real student of God’s Word to make himself familiar with these covenants, seeing, that, in the nature of the case, all things following must correspond fully with these previously given pledges and guides.”

10. greatly expanded the references to the Figures of Speech (see, for example, Genesis 8:22, FS148, the Figure Polysyndeton, or “Many Ands,” where many more references are given);

11. added many more examples of cause/effect relationship verses to the listing at Psalm 9:10;

12. added many significant new entries in the Subject Index (see, for example, the entries for “general call,” “effectual call,” “prevenient grace,” “TULIP” and its subcategories explaining this acronym and the full Scriptural documentation for each subcategory);

13. corrected the Name Index, so it should now be a perfectly complete listing of Bible names as they appear in the King James or Authorized Version, including the Translators’ marginal readings and renderings;

14. increased by several times over the number of entries in the Greek Strong Number Index; I did this to meet the need of missionaries I have heard from who complained that when they tried to follow the cross references in the original Greek they did not seem to properly relate to each other as they did in an English translation; I have placed the cross references to the original language separately from the usual subject cross references familiar to English users so that either study purpose is easy to follow.

15. Added new enumerated studies on the Attributes of God (Genesis 18:25); the Angel of Jehovah (Genesis 22:15); the names and titles of the Antichrist (Micah 5:5); and by the gracious full permission of Dr. Malcolm L. Lavender and his son Dr. R. L. Lavender, given additional notes and grammatical discussions to provide deeper, more accurate insight into the doctrine of the Atonement of Christ throughout the New Testament, from their just published (2016) Lavender’s New Testament (LNT), A Literal Translation of the Robinson-Pierpont Majority Text (1995), for which by invitation I wrote the Preface.

16. Expanded my notes on the Rules of Interpretation at 2 Peter 1:20, furnishing for some of the rules reference to specific examples of their proper application.

17. Restored all the notes given in Bagster’s original study Bible, The Comprehensive Bible (prepared in 1826), the source of all the original cross references and notes in the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (prepared in 1834): I have restored the full notes where the original Treasury editors arbitrarily “truncated” them, and I have restored the many notes which were left out altogether; I have restored the original bibliographical documentation for these notes as given in The Comprehensive Bible. These notes are always identified by a preceding “Note:” designation.

18. Included a new and corrected Notes Index from The Comprehensive Bible for its claimed 4000 notes.

19. Restored British spelling for keywords to conform more precisely to the King James Version (KJV), also called the Authorized Version (AV), as well as the notes;

20. Furnished new notes culled from over five years of my active participation on Internet forums where I provided careful answers to Bible questions, or developed apologetic material in defense of truly Biblical doctrine in answer to the claims and objections of those who support mistaken theological positions.

21. Expanded the major discussion of how to study the Bible at an extensive note newly written for Hebrews 6:9.

I continue to key this major reference work to the King James Version (KJV), also known as the Authorized Version (AV), because this English version of the Bible does not undergo further revision as many modern English translations do. That way, the keywords given in this resource continue to match the stable text of the KJV/AV accurately.

The cross references given in this resource will work just fine with any Bible translation.

There are many I must not forget to thank for the varied help, motivation, inspiration, or instruction they have given as I have prepared this new Bible study tool. I would like to mention in particular Dr. David Thomason who first encouraged me in this new work, providing me access to more digital resources and helping me determine the scope of this project; to Dr. Brent Hildebrand for his frequent encouragement and initial effort to place some of the earliest work on this project in digital format, as well as fruitful discussions to encourage my further study of additional Bible topics and passages; to other now unnamed individuals in an Internet discussion who voiced a strong interest in having access to a far more complete system of cross references, which at long last I have now provided. I must extend special thanks to Mr. Ken Sagely who furnished me many books from his personal library, which have proved of continuing help. I must also thank Dr. Malcolm L. Lavender and his son Dr. R. L. Lavender who taught me much as they asked for my editorial help on the many books they have written over the years, and for granting full permission to use their works in this project. Dr. W. L. Wade, pastor of the Lighthouse Bible Church in Danville, Virginia and Pastor Scott Cheatham in Denver, Colorado have both been an inspiration for this work as they have shared with me their own interest in cross-reference Bible study, and Pastor Edward Barclay of Hope Baptist Church, Loveland, Colorado for invaluable help received. I owe my plumber, Mr. Duane Froh, thanks for introducing me to the e-Sword Bible software and for asking good Bible questions which motivated my further study (see Hebrews 13:4). I must also thank Mr. Phil Stoner and Mr. Rick Meyers for their encouragement to pursue this work. My brother Martin A. Smith encouraged my study of many areas of Bible doctrine I might have utterly missed. I must not forget to thank my mother-in-law, Mrs. Grace Opificius, who read and approved my notes, checked many of my cross references, and by diligent searching added a few good references beyond what I found when I needed more help (see Job 5:15). Last but by no means least, I must thank my wife Susanne for her continued encouragement and her patience with the long hours I’ve expended to produce this work, and to my sons Tim and Dan who have kept my computer and software functioning for many years.

Jerome H. Smith

SYMBOLS AND ABBREVIATIONS

The following symbols and abbreviations used in this work are important to understand to get the most benefit from its helpful features. An explanation of each symbol follows:

*    placed before a cross reference marks a very clear reference where the connection is usually immediately obvious. Beginning users are encouraged to use these references first. As more experience is gained, all the references may be consulted. Another important benefit of this emphasis marking is that when teaching a group and time is limited, these references are the most helpful to consider when time will not permit consulting them all.

**    placed before a cross reference indicates a critically clear very significant reference which should not be missed.

+    This symbol means “find more here” and marks where more references can be found at another main reference point on the same subject; also may mark where a set of references to the underlying Greek or Hebrew word is located, and for names, where the main entry for the name is to be found. Following this symbol three layers deep in the cross references will lead to a very full study, what I call “digging deeper.” After reading the cross-references given for a verse, dig deeper by following where the references marked by the + symbol lead. The “first layer” involves following the references given at the starting passage marked “+” by reading the cross references given for each at those passages; the second layer involves following where the cross references marked with the “+” at each of those second layer passages that the second layer + symbol leads to; the third layer involves following all the “+” references given that the third layer verses with the + sign lead to. After this much study you will have covered the related subjects very thoroughly. I have placed a detailed step-by-step explanation of this Bible study method at the end of the note at Hebrews 6:9 in a section titled “How to dig deeper using cross reference Bible study” giving a specific example to study 2 Corinthians 5:17 this way. This process of following where successive “+” symbols lead will also work to find a verse you know is “somewhere” when you cannot recall any specific words from the verse so a concordance cannot be used to find it: just find any verse in the Bible that has anything to do with the subject, and usually using the above process of following the + symbol will get you to the desired verse fairly quickly.

+*    marks where still more references on this subject or topic are located.

*+    marks a clear reference which also serves as a main reference point.

+**    marks either a very thorough collection of references or a set of references which are potentially of life-changing significance or otherwise most important to read.

%    marks a reference which contrasts in some way, perhaps another aspect of the subject, or a reference to the opposite subject.

=    marks a type or an antitype. A type is a picture in the Old Testament which is fulfilled in some way by a person, thing, or event in the New Testament. An antitype is the New Testament person, thing, or event which fulfills the picture in the Old Testament (see John 19:36).

=>    type or antitype identified on Biblical authority (see 1 Corinthians 5:7).

>    marks quotations in the New Testament from the Old Testament as well as at Old Testament passages the fact that they are quoted in the New Testament, and sometimes where the Old Testament or the New Testament quotes itself.

<a    marks an allusion to another Old or New Testament passage (1 Tim 6:7).

<rp    identifies quotations from the Pentateuch in the prophets (see Isaiah 1:2).

$    identifies references which mark the fulfillment of prophecy.

#    indicates a strict parallel passage, as in the Gospels, or the books of Samuel, Kings, and Chronicles. Parallel texts in Proverbs are also marked. These have not been noted exhaustively, but only selectively.

S#    marks a reference to a Strong’s Concordance lexical entry number for Hebrew or Greek words.

*S#    placed before a Strong’s number (*S# H2312) indicates that all the occurrences of the original Hebrew or Greek word so marked are given here.

+S#    placed before a Strong’s number (+S# G2313) indicates that all the occurrences to the Hebrew or Greek word which are relevant or parallel to the use there are given.

()    When a cross-reference in a figure-of-speech listing is placed in parentheses, this indicates that the figure is not apparent in English versions (KJV, YLT = Young’s Literal Translation, or Rotherham’s Emphasized Bible) and so is not cross-referenced back to the explanation of the figure at the passage so listed.

()    In a series of references to a Hebrew or Greek word identified by its Strong’s number, the English translation is given in parentheses when the word is rendered differently in a particular reference.

()    An English word in parentheses after a verse reference lets the reader know which word in the verse translates the same underlying Hebrew or Greek word even when the Strong’s number is not given.

()    A word placed in parentheses in connection with the figure of speech Ellipsis indicates the word is not present in the original language, but is to be supplied in accordance with the figure of speech as indicated.

[ ]    Brackets enclose references to the original Greek words to separate verbal references to the original language word from the normal subject-related cross-references.

A.M.    Anno Mundi, in Bible chronology, the year from the creation of Adam (see Ge 4:3).

An.Ex.Is.    In Bible chronology, years since the exodus of Israel from Egypt (see Jsh 15:1).

B.C.    In chronology, the year before Christ.

BDBG    The New Brown, Driver, Briggs Gesenius Hebrew Aramaic English Lexicon.

CB    Companion Bible. This scholarly resource has been used carefully with reserve because of its editor’s materialistic theology and hyper-dispensational theology. See Ps 16:10n.

EGT    Expositor’s Greek Testament.

F/L    In the book of Isaiah, sets of references to “first” (Isaiah chapters 1—39) and “last” (Isaiah chapters 40—66) portions of Isaiah are given to demonstrate the unity of the book. Words alleged by some authorities to occur in only the first portion of the book are seen to be used in the latter portion, demonstrating that the book is the work of a single author.

FS    Figures of speech are identified with a reference number, such as FS148 (see Ge 8:22), followed by the name of the figure of speech in the main entry, or a reference to where that figure is explained, and to where all the other instances of that particular figure, or subset of that figure, can be found. This feature is an essential aid to Bible interpretation. This is the first time that such information has been made readily accessible to the ordinary Bible reader in one resource. The Companion Bible identifies many of the figures of speech in its margins, and has an alphabetical list of the figures with brief definitions in its Appendix 6. However, users of the Companion Bible who come across an important instance of the use of a figure of speech are not led in that volume to the other instances of its use. But to learn to identify a figure when it is used, one needs to see it in many contexts until one has developed a “feel” for the figure, and can learn its characteristics well enough to be able to identify it wherever it occurs. Of course, one can consult E. W. Bullinger’s Figures of Speech Used in the Bible, but there are many instances given in the margins of the Companion Bible which are not listed or discussed in that book, and many instances given in the book which are not given in the Companion Bible. This new resource remedies that, and furnishes additional references to the figures not found in either of those two excellent sources. It is believed that this new resource is the most comprehensive listing of the figures of speech in the Bible ever produced in English.

FS1—180    The names of the figures of speech have been alphabetized and given reference numbers from 1 to 180. Often the reference number is followed by additional letters and numbers to clearly identify the category or subcategory of the figure of speech. The full alphabetical list of the figures with the subcategories is given in the Figures of Speech Index.

F/S    F/S 542 means a reference is made to page 542 of E. W. Bullinger’s Figures of Speech Used in the Bible (see at Numbers 11:17, keyword spirit, for FS121A3, Metonymy of the Cause). All main figure of speech entries are so keyed to Bullinger’s volume.

FWG    F. W. Grant

g or h    Indicates verbal references to the same Hebrew or Greek words when used after a cross-reference. After a Strong’s number, indicates whether the number refers to the Hebrew or Greek lexicon at the back of Strong’s Concordance.

Gr.    Greek

Heb.    Hebrew

ISBE    International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1929, 1939, 1960)

JFB    Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown, Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible.

lit.    Literally

LNT    Lavender’s New Testament, A Literal Translation of the Robinson-Pierpont Majority Text (1995), by Malcolm L. Lavender, © 2015 by R. L. Lavender. ISBN 978-0-9795014-7-0 Used by permission.

mg    A reference to the marginal reading in the center column of many editions of the King James or Authorized Version of the Bible. If preceded by an Italicized or, the reading or rendering is that furnished by the KJV translators; if preceded by an unitalicized “or,” the suggested alternate reading is from another source.

MM    James Hope Moulton and George Milligan, The Vocabulary of the Greek Testament.

note    Placed after a cross-reference (Ge 2:7n) means that there is a pertinent note at that reference in this work about the subject of the reference. These notes are of great importance. Four thousand of the notes are drawn from Bagster’s Comprehensive Bible and are now also indexed alphabetically in the Notes Index, available to modern readers in this new resource for the first time. This new feature employing the “n” symbol, now greatly extended, makes the many notes throughout this resource far more accessible than in previous editions, and provides a unique internal cross referencing system for the notes.

or,    Italicized “or,” identifies a marginal reading supplied by the translators of the Authorized or King James Version.

or,    Unitalicized “or,” identifies alternate renderings supplied by this editor from Robert Young’s Literal Translation and its accompanying Concise Critical Comments, and other sources.

S#    There are selected references to the lexicon numbers of Strong’s Concordance throughout this resource, so relating information given here to other published Bible study tools keyed to Strong’s Concordance. Consult the Strong’s Number Indexes at the end of this resource.

T    Topic Numbers are furnished in this resource, together with an important index to these topics, to give this resource all the advantages of a topical Bible or topical arrangement of the Scriptures. Sometimes the full set of references for more than one topic is keyed to the same verse. To assist the user to more rapidly identify the appropriate set of references, the topic numbers are given at each major collection of indexed topical references.

TDNT    Theological Dictionary of the New Testament

w    ”with.” This symbol is used whenever cross-references are listed out of their normal biblical sequence in order to show important relationships between passages. These relationships would be lost if references were always cited only in their biblical order. Normally, however, references are cited in their biblical order, excepting that references are first given to the same chapter, then to the same biblical book. All other references are cited in turn in biblical order. It is a sound rule of interpretation to seek first to understand the meaning of the language of an author by reference to the use of the same or similar language in the same book. The use of the abbreviation “w” has been reduced in this resource by more often spelling out “with” in full.

WKF    Walter Kelly Firminger, The Epistles of St. Paul the Apostle to the Colossians and to Philemon with Introduction and Notes.

x    placed after a topic number indicates the topic provides a set of proof texts used to support a false doctrine. The importance of including selected references of this category cannot be overestimated. Such reference sets furnish the Bible-believing Christian with a defense against false doctrines promulgated by what are sometimes known as “false cults.” Thus, by means of these symbols you can learn the commonly cited proof texts used to support a mistaken interpretation, and by reference to the cross-references not so marked, and especially by reference to cross-references marked with a % or “contrast” symbol, the reader can learn the biblical answer to many of the false positions of the cults. Such helpful sets of cross-references are now marked out for the user more fully in this resource than in any other single reference source available.

x    x or ? placed before or sometimes after a cross-reference indicates doubtful validity of the reference, for it is a wrong identification of the source of a quotation (see Re 15:6), or it is a proof text underlying a mistaken doctrinal (Ge 3:15. Ga 6:15) or prophetic interpretation (Re 4:1), or it is a questionable identification of a figure of speech, questionable because it is misidentified (Ge 1:26n), or arbitrarily supports a mistaken (Ge 24:10n) viewpoint.

YLT    Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible.

 

I should add a note here as to where to find the new “Notes Index.”  It will be found in the e-Sword “Reference Library” under the title The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury. There will be found the Bibliography, Names Index, Notes Index, Prayer Index, Proverbs Index.

The Subject Index and the Topic Index will be found in the lower left quadrant window pane of the e-Sword program devoted to Dictionaries, and will open when you click the “tab” labeled “UCTR Indexes.” Other indexes are there too, including the Figure of Speech Index, the most complete index to figures of speech found in the Bible there is.

It is a good idea to “browse” the Subject Index and the Topic Index.  You will discover many topics you would otherwise never imagine or discover otherwise.  They would provide any Bible reader a lifetime of information to glean from Bible study that might otherwise be missed.

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My Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury now available

My Bible study reference work, The Ultimate Cross Reference Treasury, is now available at the following link:

https://estudysource.com/platform/site/product/products.aspx?pid=C0025

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Is Jesus ever called God in the Bible?

Apparently, Muslims do not believe that Jesus Christ is ever called God in the Bible.

Yet I gave a whole list of verses where Jesus is called God in the New Testament.  The verses I gave were John 1:1, John 20:28,  Acts 7:59,  Romans 9:5,  Titus 2:13,  Hebrews 1:8,  2 Peter 1:1,  1 John 5:20.  Hover your “mouse” pointer over these highlighted verses and the text of each verse will “pop up” so you can easily and immediately read each verse for yourself.

A Muslim participant in the “Islam and Christianity Debate Group” responded,

Uthmanmuhammad Aboki The Biblical verses refering to Jesus as god are, without doubt, products of human interpolations. Because Jesus himself has clearified the matter in several places in the Bible. “The Father is greater than I”, said Jesus. He is not God who has anyone that is greater than him. This simple fact is incontestable. “No one has seen God at anytime.” John 1:18. But Jesus was seen. “O Lord, there is none like You, nor is there any God besides You” 1st Chron 17/20. If God were in multiple persons, then this verse shouldnt be in the Bible.

 

I present my rather detailed response below:

Uthmanmuhammad Aboki, you make some very interesting assertions. But assertions, to be valid, must be supported with evidence.
 
You claim, “The Biblical verses refering to Jesus as god are, without doubt, products of human interpolations.”
 
There is no documentary evidence, no textual evidence, available to support your claim. But if you think you have some, I will gladly consider it.  But until then, we must accept the text of the New Testament as it stands written in the original Greek as the final authority in this matter.
 
When Jesus said, “The Father is greater than I,” Jesus is speaking of His subordination to God the Father, a position that has always been true, both before the Incarnation of Christ, and since His bodily resurrection from the dead and forty days later His bodily ascension to heaven to return to the Father.  But subordination does not imply difference in essence.  Jesus Christ has always been the Second Person of the Trinity, and as such, possesses the same divine nature as does God the Father, and the Third Person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit.  That is what the Bible teaches, in both the Old Testament and in the New Testament.
 
You do bring some very interesting verses from the Bible into the discussion.
 
“The Father is greater than I”, said Jesus. He is not God who has anyone that is greater than him. This simple fact is incontestable.
 
Here, you are making reference to John 14:28.  But of course, if the Second Person of the Trinity is subordinate to the Father, then logically Jesus can say “for my Father is greater than I.”  Furthermore, Jesus was speaking this while He was still in the flesh, before His bodily resurrection, so Jesus then is speaking in His position as a man.
 
Now you argue, “He is not God who has anyone that is greater than him. This simple fact is incontestable.”
 
And yet, though you appeal to the Bible to verses you believe support your claim, when I provided an extensive list of verses where Jesus in the Bible is directly called “God,” you dismissed them all with the unsupported claim that all my verses are interpolations!  How do you know the verses you cited are not interpolations?  Now I do not express any doubt about the validity of the verses you have cited, and you should have no doubt about the many verses I have cited.
 
In terms of what is being said at John 14:28, when Jesus speaks of His Father being “greater than” Himself, the Lord Jesus Christ was not inferior as to His essential being (see John 14:9;  John 14:11;  John 10:30), but as to His office, as sent by the Father (see 1 Corinthians 15:27;  Philippians 2:9-11).
 
John 14:9  Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
 
John 14:11  Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake.
 
John 10:30  I and my Father are one.
 
 
“No one has seen God at anytime.” John 1:18. But Jesus was seen.
 
Jesus said that God is spirit (John 4:24).  Spirit cannot be seen with human eyes. Therefore, no man has ever seen God the Father, unless God chose to  manifest Himself as a physical being, when He appeared as a man or as an Angel to individuals in the Old Testament.  These appearances are called theophanies. An example of one of these is Genesis 12:7.
 
Genesis 12:7  And the LORD appeared unto Abram, and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land: and there builded he an altar unto the LORD, who appeared unto him.
 
Another example is Genesis 32:30.
 
Genesis 32:30  And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.
 
I have studied this subject in the Bible very carefully.  By comparing Scripture with Scripture, allowing the Bible to explain itself, I have found that when anyone has seen God “face to face” that person has seen the LORD, or Jehovah.  Sometimes in the same context the Person who has been seen is called God, the LORD or Jehovah, or the Angel of the LORD, or the Angel of Jehovah. 
 
At Genesis 19:24 there are TWO persons called Jehovah present at the same time, at the same event, at the same scene.
 
Genesis 19:24  Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven;
 
It is possible to correctly affirm from Scripture, therefore, that there are two Persons called Jehovah in the Old Testament.
 
The One that Abraham saw in Genesis 19:24 is in context spoken of as a “man” (Genesis 18:1, 2).  This “man” is later called God and Jehovah in the subsequent narrative, too long to quote here.
 
Now Jesus said, “Abraham rejoiced to see my day, and saw it, and was glad” (John 8:56).  This surely shows that Jesus Christ claimed to be the Person that Abraham actually saw, seen by Abraham as a man, called Jehovah, and called God.
 
This demonstrates, therefore, that Jesus Christ in His pre-incarnate form was seen as the Angel of Jehovah, as Jehovah, and as God, what we call the Second Person of the Trinity, at least from the time of Abraham as recorded in the Old Testament and asserted in the New Testament.
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The First and Greatest Commandment

The Nugget:

Mark 12:28  And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?

Mark 12:29  And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

Mark 12:30  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

My Comment:

Once again, I see discussion on the Facebook group “Islam and Christianity Debate Group” is going strong.  Today a Muslim poster cited Mark 12:29, 30 to show Jesus taught there is but One God, and asks the important question:

“So why are Christians preaching trinity?”

He then asserts, “Anything contrary to this declaration by Christ, in any place in the Bible, must be rejected as human interpolation. Period.”

Looks to me like our dear Muslim friends have never studied carefully my “24 Rules of Interpretation” found in the October 2010 archives to the right on this page.  It is about time they did.

The Muslim poster goes on to say, “The 1st Epistle of John Chapter 5 verse 7 (1 John 5:7), the only text in the entire Bible which supports trinity, has now been REMOVED & EXPUNGED from a number of versions of the Bible!”

Another Christian poster who means well but is not always altogether grammatical in his English responded “The Lord is One is spirit but 3 in person. Don’t let your ignorance guide your judgment.”

The Muslim responded, “Give us any supportive Biblical quotation to that effect if you are being truthful.”

I stepped in to the discussion at this point with an answer.

My Answer

Jesus Christ is called God (John 1:1.  John 20:28.  Acts 7:59.  Romans 9:5.  Titus 2:13.  Hebrews 1:8.  2 Peter 1:1.  1 John 5:20).
 
Jesus Christ is also identified as one of two persons called Jehovah in the Old Testament by writers in the New Testament (Mark 1:1-3, where Jesus is identified as the Lord whose way was prepared by John the Baptist His forerunner in fulfillment of Isaiah 40:3-5).  There are many more similar identifications in the New Testament where what is spoken of Jehovah in the Old Testament is applied to Jesus Christ in the New Testament.
 
Jesus Christ Himself makes this identification in John 12:41 compared with Isaiah 6:1.  See also John 8:56-58 where Jesus Christ asserted “Abraham rejoiced to see my day, and he saw it, and was glad.”   This is a reference to an event in the Old Testament found at Genesis 17:17, 19;  18:10, 14;  21:1, 2, 6.
 
Probably no one has any question about the fact that the Bible identifies the Father as God (Exodus 20:1, 2).  See also 2 Corinthians 11:31;  Ephesians 1:3;  4:6;  1 Peter 1:3.
 
The Holy Spirit is called God (Acts 5:3, 4).
 
Since in the Bible there are three persons, and only three, that are each called God, by good and necessary  inference this proves that God exists eternally in Three Persons, and this both justifies and necessarily proves that God exists as a Trinity of Persons. These Three Persons are spoken of together by Jesus Christ Himself as the Persons of the Godhead, who are associated on an equality of being, and each possess the attributes and prerogatives of Deity (see Matthew 28:19, where Jesus so names them together).
 
Any one who will carefully examine the evidence found in the Bible must come to this conclusion.  Any other conclusion is evidence of a failure to confront and accept the truth of this evidence, and therefore is utter falsehood, and is not being truthful.
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