But who is the Son, in the Bible? Did He create the worlds...or did
He not exist except as a 'plan' or 'concept' until a babe was born to Mary?
The Son of God: Eternal God or beginning in time?
The Garden of Gethsemane
A party by the name of 'Jesus' went to the Garden of Gethsemane:
"Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said
to the disciples, 'Sit here while I go and pray over there.'" (Matthew 26:36).
He called out in agony to...'Jesus'?:
"He went a little farther and fell on His face, and prayed, saying,
'O My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me..." (Matthew 26:39).
In 'Oneness' Pentecostalism, 'Jesus' is the name, not only of 'the Father' and
of 'the Son,' but also of the Holy Spirit. Is this Biblical?
Is Jesus the Holy Spirit?
"This one true God manifested Himself in the Old Testament in divers ways;
in the Son while He walked among men; as the Holy Spirit after the ascension." (UPCI
Articles of Faith). Is the Holy Spirit an innovation...or has He ever been?:
The Eternal Spirit
That God is 'Three-in-One' is no mystery; take a scripture like 1 Peter
1:2: "Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To the pilgrims of the Dispersion
in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, elect according to
the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for
obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and
peace be multiplied." (1 Peter 1:2). Count on the fingers of
one hand the names invoked...pardon me, 'titles'...and on the other hand,
the number of true and living Gods in the universe: "For You are great,
and do wondrous things; You alone are God." (Psalm 86:10). Three
fingers showing on one hand, one on the other...Three-in-One!
God in Three Witnesses
The Doctrine of the Trinity
The doctrine of the Trinity is grossly misunderstood by 'Oneness' Pentecostals,
who describe the Trinity as "three gods." What is the doctrine?
The four propositions proven above: that
a.) There is only One God;
b.) The Father is God;
c.) The Son is God;
d.) The Holy Spirit is God.
— are at the heart of the fifth-century Athanasian Creed: "So the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is
God. And yet they are not three gods: but one God." As with the Jehovah's Witnesses, the point which
embarrasses 'Oneness' Pentecostals is c.). Ask 'Oneness' Pentecostals to check one box:
THE SON IS GOD!
— and their answers are all over the map. Some frankly
admit they do not believe 'the Son' is God, on the strength of the man-made
definition at the heart of their system, that 'the Son' means 'the flesh' of Jesus
of Nazareth. Others claim to believe it, but then equivocate on the meaning of
'the Son' when asked how it is that the Father loves the Son and the Son loves the Father.
'Oneness'-speak confuses Bible-readers, who are accustomed to hear 'the
Son' as synonymous with 'Jesus:' "And this is His commandment: that
we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ..." (1 John
3:23). In 'Oneness'-speak, the two terms are not coterminous. 'Oneness'
Pentecostals treat 'Jesus' as a name of 'the Father' also: "Jesus
(meaning Jehovah-Savior) is the revealed name of God in the New Testament.
Jesus is the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost." (David
Bernard). Sharing the 'Father-onlyism' of the Unitarian Universalists,
only on the strength of this identification do they confess Jesus' Deity at all.
Like the Unitarian Universalists, the 'Oneness' Pentecostals confess that
'the Father' is God; unique to themselves, they express this by saying
'Jesus is God'. Like the Unitarian Universalists, they believe 'the
Son' to be a man who came into existence at Bethlehem, indwelt by 'the
Father' who alone is God. It's only on the strength of the 'Philadelphia-lawyer'
trick of defining 'Jesus' as a name of 'the Father' that 'Oneness' Pentecostals
can slip their nose into the Christian tent, and claim to believe that
Jesus is God! Defining 'the Son' to mean the 'flesh' creates obvious
difficulties in unequivocally proclaiming 'the Son' to be God, rather than
a human 'tabernacle' or 'shell' in which God dwelt.
But what saith the scripture? That 'the Son'...not 'the Father in
the Son', but 'the Son'...is eternal God!: