G-d is One, Not a Trinity
“Hear O Israel, YHVH is G-d, YHVH is ONE.” (Deut 6:4)
I do not subscribe to trinitarian/tri-unitarian doctrines which attempt to define G-d as three Persons in One. YHVH is One.
I am convinced one reason why a trinitarian doctrine was incorporated into Christianity was to explain the ‘person’ of Yeshua; to explain how he could be G-d. That G-d could take on human form as an earthly Messiah isn’t difficult to accept — after all — He’d previously supped with Abraham (Gen 18) and He had wrestled with Jacob (Gen 32) while also in human form. Our powerful G-d can manifest Himself in many forms; there is no need for these weak doctrines that attempt to sub-divide the godhead in attempts to explain “how” He does it. Trinitarians start dividing up the godhead so that the Father is one person, the Son/Yeshua is a second person, and then the Ruach (spirit) is a third person. Scripture never says G-d is divided up into three persons! The word ‘trinity’ isn’t even Scriptural. Trinity is a manmade doctrine that borrows heavily from pagan sources. Scripture tells us G-d is One not three. Ultimately the trinity doctrine seeks to limit our heavenly Father to merely one-third of the godhead. Isn’t it easier to just accept Scripture at Its Word? We have One G-d, and He can manifest Himself in any form He chooses without needing to be subdivided to fit the manmade doctrines.
Trinitarian Problem With Father Of Yeshua
“Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.” Matthew 1:20
Who’s the Father? The Father or the Ruach (Holy Spirit)? Are there two Fathers in the Trinity?
Who Is The Ruach (Spirit)?
Ruach (Strongs 7307) is the Hebrew word for ‘spirit,’ it is defined as ‘breath’ ‘air’ ‘strength’ ‘wind’ ‘breeze.’ It’s Greek equivalent used in Brit Chadasha (new testament) is pneuma also meaning ‘the wind’ ‘to breathe’ or ‘blow.’ (Strongs 4151) Clearly the Ruach is the breath of G-d and can not be a separate person within the godhead. Let’s look at its use:
“Now the earth was unformed and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God hovered over the face of the waters. Genesis 1:2
“Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” 2 Cor 3:17
“For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Yeshua HaMashiach” Philippians 1:19
“And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.” 1 Cor 15:45
In the above passages we see the ‘spirit’ is easily applied to either the “Father” and the “Son.” It’s not a person in its own right within the godhead — it is the outward breath and strength of YHVH.
Is Yeshua The Father Or The Son?
Let’s look in Scripture, starting with the most famous messianic prophecy:
“For unto us a child is born .., and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The Mighty Almighty, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6
Where is the trinity? Did G-d forget that Yeshua was to be only the Son, not the Father? Let’s re-word some Scriptural passages to emphasize how the trinity doctrine affects their reading:
Yeshua said “I and the Father are One.”
This flat out disputes the concept of Yeshua being the ‘second person of the trinity’ since He is identifying Himself as the Father.
Mix in trinity doctrine, it should read:
“I and the Father comprise two-thirds of a three person deity.”
Yeshua said “he that hath seen me hath seen the Father.”
Allow for the trinity doctrine, that would read:
“He who has seen me has seen one-third of the godhead which is sort of like seeing the Father who is a different one-third of the godhead.”
It doesn’t work. Yeshua is the Father as well as the Son. No separation or division is mentioned, therefore, no trinity! G-d is One, and only One. He is not a collection of personages. He can manifest Himself in many forms but He is always One.
“Thus saith YHVH, thy Redeemer, and He that formed thee from the womb: I am YHVH, that maketh all things; that stretched forth the heavens alone; that spread abroad the earth by Myself” Isa. 44:24
Compare Isaiah 44:24 above with Colossian 1:15-18 regarding Yeshua:
“Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him (Yeshua) were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.
Now the Father YHVH created all things by Himself and yet Colossians attributes these acts to the Son, Yeshua. It is clear that Yeshua is not relegated Scripturally to only being the Son, the second person of the godhead, but that Yeshua is the Father too!
How can we know YHVH meant the Father and not a pre-incarnate Messiah? Easy, read on:
“For Thou art our Father ; for Abraham knoweth us not, and Israel doth not acknowledge us; Thou, O YHVH, art our Father, our Redeemer from everlasting is Thy name.” Isaiah 63:16
YHVH is the Father — YHVH is also the Redeemer! Read on:
“I, even I, am YHVH; and beside Me there is no saviour.” Isa. 43:11
These show clearly that YHVH is the Father, our Redeemer and Saviour. Yet the trinity doctrine tries to split up G-d into divisions, assigning the Father one role, and the Son a different role of Saviour/Redeemer. It will not work! These problems cease to exist if we acknowledge that YHVH is G-d, and Messiah is YHVH, and therefore YHVH and Messiah are one and the same. The trinitarian distinctions between Father, Son and Ruach conflict with Scripture which make no such subdivisions within the godhead. There is One G-d, YHVH. Period. Who was the pre-incarnate Messiah? It’s the same as the incarnate Messiah — it’s YHVH, our sole Father, Creator, L-rd and G-d.
“Let Us Make Man In Our Image”
Trinitarians often quote Genesis 1:26,27 to prove the trinity of G-d:
26 “And God said: ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.’ 27 And God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.”
Trinitarians conveniently ignore that prior to the Council of Nicaea, “let us” and “our image” were previously understood as G-d speaking with His angels. The trinitarians attempt to argue that since angels cannot create, the pluralty of us and our in verse 26 must point to G-d alone. But if G-d alone is the plural of verse 26, then verse 27 should read “and they created man in their own image.” But it doesn’t. Instead, verse 27 is in singular format; “And G-d created (the Hebrew word ‘bara’ – ‘created’ — singular form) man in His own image.” The verb ‘bara’ is singular and its action cannot point to a plural doer (i.e. ‘he bara’ but not ‘they bara’). So, in verse 26 the pluralty points to G-d and His angels while the actual act of creating man in verse 27 points to a single G-d acting alone. So the pluralty in verse 26 simply cannot be used to prove G-d is a corporate Being.
If we study Genesis more closely, we find more support that G-d’s use of ‘us’ here referred to Himself and His angels:
“And the LORD God said: ‘Behold, the man is become as one of *us*, to know good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever.’ Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken. So He drove out the man; and He placed at the east of the garden of Eden the cherubim , and the flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way to the tree of life. Genesis 3:22-24
The us here is G-d again addressing His angels. They are discussing the fact that man had now acquired knowledge of good and evil; knowledge that had previously only been known by G-d and His angels. (We know angels had this knowledge, remember the fall of hasatan). So G-d, having discussed this problem with his angels, sends some of his angels down to guard the entrance to the garden of Eden. I wish I had time to compile a whole list of Scripture passages on angels — to better illustrate their role in heaven and on earth. G-d often sent angels to help mankind, to reveal a message to mankind, etc. Angels watch and learn from creation, and even assist in the various roles G-d assigns them (like guarding the entrance to Eden).
Trinitarians also love to point out that the ‘echad’ (‘one’ in Hebrew) is a plural form, thus G-d must be a trinity. So they argue that the Shema, “Hear, O Israel, YHVH is God, YHVH is One” (Deuteronomy 6:4) implies His ‘oneness’ is really corporate. They claim, otherwise, the Hebrew word ‘yachid,’ the singular form, would have been used instead. It sounds fairly compelling until you search out all instances where ‘echad’ is used. It turns out ‘echad’ can also mean an absolute one or only one:
“And Pharaoh sent, and, behold, there was not so much as one (echad) of the cattle of the Israelites dead. But the heart of Pharaoh was stubborn, and he did not let the people go.” Exodus 9:7
“There is one (echad) that is alone, and he hath not a second; yea, he hath neither son nor brother; yet is there no end of all his labour, neither is his eye satisfied with riches: ‘for whom then do I labour, and bereave my soul of pleasure?’ This also is vanity, yea, it is a grievous business.” Ecclesiastes 4:8
“And it came to pass, while they were in the way, that the tidings came to David, saying: ‘Absalom hath slain all the king’s sons, and there is not one (echad) of them left.'” 2 Samuel 13:30
“So shall we come upon him in some place where he shall be found, and we will light upon him as the dew falleth on the ground; and of him and of all the men that are with him we will not leave so much as one (echad) .” 2 Samuel 17:12
“Then David arose, and all the people that were with him, and they passed over the Jordan; by the morning light there lacked not one (echad) of them that was not gone over the Jordan.” 2 Samuel 17:22
Clearly the use of ‘echad’ can not be used to prove G-d is a pluralty.
Trinitarians also love to point out the word ‘G-d’ should be ‘gods’ since it comes from the hebrew ‘elohim‘ which is plural. The use of ‘elohim’ was previously understood to show how unique, complete, and perfect the Hebrew G-d was in comparison to other gods. The plural form proves G-d’s vastness — not trinity! YHVH alone was an all-inclusive G-d; with complete power and sovereignty over creation. And you’ll note that in spite of ‘elohim’ being a plural tense, it is still used in context as if singular (that is, elohim is used in “I YHVH thy G-d” and never as “We YHVH thy G-d”). Below are just a few of many such instances:
“Thou shalt not bow down unto them, nor serve them; for I the LORD thy God (Elohim) am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate Me.” Exodus 20:5
“Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them: Ye shall be holy; for I the LORD your God (Elohim) am holy.” Leviticus 19:2 tify you, am holy.
“Thou shalt not bow down unto them, nor serve them; for I the LORD thy God (Elohim) am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the third and upon the fourth generation of them that hate Me,” Deuteronomy 5:9
“For I the LORD thy God (Elohim) hold thy right hand, who say unto thee: ‘Fear not, I help thee.'” Isaiah 41:13
We see pluralty isn’t indicated by the use of ‘elohim’ in Scripture. Our Elohim acts alone, not corporately. Had a pluralty of elohim been implied in the above passages, it would have been “We, the LORD your G-d/elohim….” instead of “I, the Lord your G-d.”
“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.”
Trinitarians point to this verse to show G-d was triune. None of the other gospels or epistles use this phrasing and the practice of the apostles endorsed baptism in the Name of Yeshua only. Further, an individual ‘name’ isn’t even assigned to the Ruach/spirit making the command impossible. Incidently, despite the fact trinitarians cling to this dubious verse, the verse doesn’t even prove a trinity — the text never makes the leap that the three mentioned comprise a triune godhead. Since Yeshua IS G-d, anyone baptising in the name of Yeshua HaMashiach is already baptising in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost (as well as in the name of El Shaddai, El Elyon, El-Eloe-Yisrael, etc — and in the name of the Creator, Redeemer, Master, Judge, etc.. See?) One VAST G-d!
Three In Heaven….
“Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.” 1 John 5:5-8
Similar situation as in Matthew, an assumption is made by trinitarians that a heavenly tri-witness must therefore prove that G-d is a trinity. We see the witness in this passage wasn’t about a godly trinity, but rather that the Good News is validated by the witness of water (immersion), blood (crucifixion) and Ruach/Spirit on earth, as well as by the Father, Word (logos) and Ruach in heaven. Notice this is just reiterating what we have already seen in the gospels about the witness in heaven: “Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 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 It’s beautiful wording: three bear witness on earth (Water, Blood, Ruach) and three bear witness in heaven (G-d, Word, and Ruach)1 — but there is no leap that G-d, Word and Ruach comprise a trinity any more so than Water, Blood and Ruach would. 2
But Without The Trinity Explanation, How Do We Understand The Prayers Of The Son To The Father?
Trinity doesn’t adequately explain the prayers of Yeshua to the Father — did the Father not know the Son’s thoughts already? If the three persons can think and act separately, then it’s polytheism, not monotheism as taught in TaNaKh. I suggest the prayers of Yeshua represented His humanity, not His deity; that is, He was praying as a man, not as some ‘member’ of the godhead.
Imagine what it means for the infinite majestic essense of G-d to inhabit a human form. Yet we know that in spite of Yeshua’s deity, Yeshua was also fully human. Yeshua was tempted, he hungered, wearied, wept, felt pain, felt isolation, even experienced human death. You and I pray to G-d for strength when we’re in need — where else would Yeshua turn for these same comforts except to appeal to His own deity and power? G-d doesn’t need to pray, but man does — man is incomplete without G-d. So it was Yeshua’s human nature that drew Him to prayer, just as we also turn to G-d in prayer.
Some argue Yeshua prayed as an example for us, and not for Himself. It’s true His prayers do teach us about the nature of Messiah and of G-d. But I cannot limit Yeshua’s prayers as merely exemplary forms (as in The L-rd’s Prayer in Matthew 6:9) since some of His prayers were prayed without an audience (as in the garden, Matthew 26:37-45).
“ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI”
“My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?”
Why did G-d cry out to Himself on the cross?
Some trinitarians suggest that when the person of the Son took on the sins of the world, the person of the Ruach and the person of the Father were forced to abandon Him, and so, the Son had been forsaken by the other two persons of the godhead. In the first place, if the three persons of the godhead can exist apart from one another (without the confines of sharing the same entity), then you’ve got polytheism — individual gods. Any separation within the godhead belies the trinitarian’s own stance that the three persons comprise a unit of one.
Secondly, the passage never states that Yeshua was forsaken, it merely says He uttered these words. These words happen to be a direct quote from Psalm 22:1. There is a difference in Yeshua quoting the passage and actually being forsaken.
Now, did Psalm 22:1 accurately echo Yeshua’s own thoughts and feelings at that moment or was He merely quoting the Psalmist’s (David) own thoughts and feelings? We cannot know. I think Yeshua uttered it for both reasons:
1) to link David’s Psalm 22:1 sufferings to His own crucifixion;
2) because He was at the point of death and His earthly body was receiving the weight of every sin ever committed by man.
Yeshua, our sinless G-d, could not take on the unfamiliar burden of mankind’s sin and not feel forsaken. It went against G-d’s very nature. G-d has no sin nor can G-d co-exist/abide with sin. G-d cannot act contrary to His own perfect nature. This was the messianic dilemma — for our Judge to also act as our Redeemer:
“For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come. And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore mine own arm brought salvation unto me; and my fury, it upheld me.” Isaiah 63:4,5
“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began: That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us; To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant. Luke 1:68-72
G-d could not take on sin; yet no human qualified for the messianic mission because of their own sins (man can’t even redeem himself). So G-d combined the two in order to accomplish the messianic mission: His deity satisfied the sinless/perfect sacrifice requirements, yet His human form qualified Him to take upon Himself the sins of the world.
By quoting Psalm 22:1 on the cross, I believe Yeshua was showing this conflict of two natures (deity vs human) and revealed the utter humility He had taken upon Himself in order to make atonement on mankind’s behalf.
“And the YHVH shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one YHVH, and his name one.” Zechariah 14:9
“Have we not all one Father? has not one God made us? why are we, every one of us, acting falsely to his brother, putting shame on the agreement of our fathers? Malachi 2:10
“And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: …. And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he.” Mark 12:29, 32
“Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.” Romans 3:30
“ One God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in all.” Ephesians 4:6
“For there is one God and one peacemaker between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,” 1 Timothy 2:5
“But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.” 1 Corinthians 8:6
“Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” James 2:19
Don’t trinitarians find it odd that not once does Scripture state: “There is one G-d consisting of three persons.”? G-d is one and the trinity doctrine is in conflict with Scripture.
1 Note wording differs from Matthew, which uses Son (hweeos) while 1 John uses Word (logos)
2 In the past, I have argued that the line: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one” shouldn’t be in our bibles. However, I wasn’t using a good bible text! Modern bible versions are based on corrupted Alexandrian manuscripts which omit this sentence, so non-KJV bibles based on these corrupted manuscripts also omit it (or include it with a disclaimer). But with prayerful study recently, I have realized that this sentence is indeed the Word of G-d and absolutely must be included in Scripture. This verse was included in early latin manuscripts, and it was also mentioned by an early church writer, Cyprian. (200-258) The Treatises of Cyprian 1:1:6 That proves that this line was not some ‘later addition’ but was part of the original Scriptures, so my previous understanding was just plain wrong.
Article revised October 2005 –EK