Apostolic Oneness Pentecostals and Jehovah's Witnesses: Who is God?
According to Apostolic Oneness, Jesus is God, and the other persons are modes. According to Jehovah's Witnesses, Jesus is a lesser "god" created by Jehovah God -- who is God the Father and the Spirit is his holy force.
So which is? Is Jesus God, or is the Father God?
- Anonymous10 years agoFavorite Answer
Oneness believers and Trinitarians are similar in that 1. both believe in one God; 2. both believe that the Father, Son, and Spirit are God; 3. both confess that the Scripture makes a distinction between the Father, Son, and Spirit; 4. both believe that the Son of God died on the cross, and not the Father; both believe that Jesus was praying to the Father, and not to Himself.
Oneness (O) believers and Trinitarians (T) differ in that 1. T believe that the one God consists of three eternal persons while O believes that the one God is one person; 2. T believe that the second person of the Trinity became incarnated while O believes that the Father, who is one person, became incarnated as the Son of God; 3. T believe that the Son is eternal while O believes that the Son did not exist until the incarnation, because the term refers to God as He exists as a man, and not as He exists in His essential deity; 4. T sees the Biblical distinctions between the Father and the Son to be a distinction in both personality and flesh while O believes that all distinctions are a result of the relationship of the Spirit of God to the incarnate God-man.
If we are going to confess a Trinity we must ask why we do not find this triunity of God until the NT. We have to wonder why we never read about the second person in the OT. Why was the existence of a second person not revealed until the incarnation? Why is it that God has only spoken through the Son in these last days (Hebrews 1:1-3) if the Son has eternally existed alongside the Father? Does it make more sense to conclude that the Son is an eternally distinct person in the Godhead that God failed to mention until the NT, or is it more reasonable to conclude that "Son" has to do with the one uni-personal God's existence as a man, which existence did not come to be until the incarnation?
If there was no distinct person from the Father in the OT, what would we expect to find in the OT concerning the Son? Nothing. What do we find? Nothing. So why conclude that the Son of God is an eternal person in the Godhead, and reject the idea that "Son" pertains to God's incarnate existence, if we read nothing about the Son until the incarnation? Frankly, there is no good reason to do so. Trinitarians must account for the lack of evidence upon which they have concluded that the Son is eternal. They must account for the fact that God never disclosed His threeness until the NT, offer a viable explanation for such disclosure, and offer compelling evidence that would substantiate the belief that there ever was an eternal Son to be disclosed in the first place.
While both Trinitarian and Oneness theologies must account for the new revelation of God in the incarnation, there is a difference between saying the same person who revealed Himself to Moses in the OT became man in the NT (Oneness theology), and saying the second person in the Godhead no one knew existed became man in the NT (Trinitarian theology). While Oneness believers may be shocked to discover that God become man, Trinitarians would be shocked to see who showed up! In Oneness theology the person who shows up is the same person revealed the OT, not a different person in the Godhead we never knew about before. Trinitarian theology has to admit that a whole other person in the Godhead showed up on the scene in flesh, who is personally distinct from the personal God revealed in the OT. In Oneness theology we do not find a part of God that we have never known before; we find the same familiar God, but manifest in flesh.
Also, why is it that God is called "YHWH" before the incarnation, and only "Father" and "Son" after the incarnation? The Father-Son terminology only arises after the incarnation when God actually became a man. It is no surprise, then that we find a distinction between Father and Son starting in the NT (not the OT). Maybe we do not find such terminology in the OT because God was never "Father" (in the NT sense of the word describing the relationship between Father and Son) before He fathered a son in the incarnation. It is much more reasonable to conclude that the distinctions between Father and Son are temporal distinctions arising in the incarnation, not eternal distinctions within God's essential being.Source(s): Kathy Oneness believer
- 6 years ago
John 14:9 says: Jesus answered: "Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?
ANYONE WHO HAS SEEN ME HAS SEEN THE FATHER.
The important verse is verse 8 when Philip says: ""Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us."
Do the math.
- ChristineLv 44 years ago
Correction.. pentecostal is charismatic not apostolic.
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- Anonymous3 years ago
This is a great question, and one that has been confusing me for quite a long time.
- computernutLv 510 years ago
The Father is God (John 17:3), and Jesus is the Father manifested in the flesh (1 Timothy 3:16). I am often met with the "out of context" dodge concerning John 17:3, but Jesus *plainly* and *unambiguously* declared that the Father is the *only* true God. The word "only" excludes all others. This is true no matter how many grammatical and contextual hoops one attempts to jump through. So we are left with one of two choices: either Jesus is *not* God, or Jesus is the Father.
Apostolic Believer in One God, JESUS
"“And to the angel of the congregation in La·o·di·ce´a write: These are the things that the Amen says, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation by God" (Revelation 3:14, New World Translation).
Of course, Apostolic Oneness Pentecostals have no problem with the idea that Jesus is a created being, because we believe that there was a point when the Son (the man, Jesus) was created - namely, when the virgin Mary conceived (Luke 1:35; Galatians 4:4). The deity of Christ, however, of course, had no beginning. And since the Greek word "arche", here translated "beginning", can also be translated "active cause" or "initiator", standing on that one word in an attempt to prove that Jesus is not Jehovah God manifest in the flesh is a very weak argument, indeed.
- Anonymous10 years ago
Oneness theology does not deny that the Son is eternal, nor does it confess that Jesus is a created deity. It is one thing to say that Christ's deity is the same as the Father as do Oneness believers, but it is another thing to say that the deity of Christ is a created deity by the Father as do JWs. The only way in which it could be said that Oneness believers believe in a created Son is that we believe Jesus' humanity came into existence at 5-4 BC. (because we understand "Son" as being intrinsically connected with the incarnation), but this is believed by all Christians, not just Oneness believers. If we are not claiming that Jesus' deity is created by the Father, then we do not hold to the JW doctrine, and thus we cannot be accused of teaching a created Son anymore than Trinitarians can be accused of such. Where Trinitarians and Oneness differ is whether or not the eternal deity of the Son of God is the same personal deity as the Father, or a distinct person in the Godhead.
Oneness people deny the orthodox Trinitarian doctrine that the Son of God is eternally begotten according to His deity, confessing only that He was begotten in time according to His humanity. We do confess that the deity of the Son, Yahweh, is eternal. The disagreement between Oneness believers and Trinitarians pertains to whether or not the deity of Christ is a distinct eternal personality in the Godhead from the Father, or whether His deity is the same person of the Father, but incarnated in flesh. We disagree with Trinitarianism that the deity of the Son is distinct in person from the deity of the Father.Source(s): Paulette Oneness Pentecostal
- 10 years ago
Jesus is referred to in the scriptures as the Son of God. He is Jehovah's 'only begotten Son'
Nowhere in the scriptures does he ever claim to be God & in fact he always his Father the glory when he performed miracles. He also said that his own will was of secondary important to the Father's will on a few occasions. If they were the same, then his will would automatically be his Father's will.
Also, at Matthew 24:36, we see that the Father knew something that the Son didn't know, showing that they must be separate individuals.
So, in answer to your question... Jesus is the Son, not the Father.
And the Father is God
- ELMOLv 410 years ago
A number of times Jesus referred to the Father and Himself in the plural. These passages are in the Book of John, the New Testament writer who more than any other identified Jesus as God and the Father It is wrong for anyone to suppose this plural usage to mean that Jesus is a separate person in the Godhead from the Father. However, it does indicate a distinction between the deity (Father) and humanity (Son) of Jesus Christ. The Son, who is visible, revealed the Father, who is invisible. Thus, Jesus said, "If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also" (John 8:19); "The Father hath not left me alone (John 8:29); "He that hateth me hateth my Father also" (John 15:23); "Now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father" (John 15:24); and "I am not alone, because the Father is with me" (John 16:32). These verses of Scripture use the plural to express a consistent theme: Jesus is not just a man, but He is God also. Jesus was not an ordinary man as He appeared to be outwardly. He was not alone, but He had the Spirit of the Father within Him. This explains the dual nature of Jesus and reveals the oneness of God.
How was the Father with Jesus? The logical explanation is that He was in Jesus. Therefore, if you know Jesus, you know the Father; if you see Jesus, you see the Father; and if you hate Jesus, you hate the Father. II John 9 states, "He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son." What is the doctrine of Christ? It is the doctrine that Jesus is the Messiah; He is the God of the Old Testament manifested in flesh. In other words, the apostle wrote that if we understand the doctrine of Christ we will realize that Jesus is both the Father and the Son. We therefore deny neither the Father nor the Son. When we accept the doctrine of Christ, we accept the doctrine of both the Father and the Son. It is also true that if we deny the Son we are denying the Father, but if we acknowledge the Son we have acknowledged the Father also (I John 2:23).
Apostolic Believer In One God, JESUSSource(s): WHEEL OF PROPHECY http://www.apostolic-voice.org/tracts/onegod.htm
- Anonymous10 years ago
"...For if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins"
If I was the one who said that, I don't think that I would get a good response from people. In fact a lot of people probably do not know that particular scripture is even in the Bible. And if they do, they may not know what it means.
We know that God is a spirit. And He being a spirit, we cannot see Him. Yet we continue to serve him through faith. Believing that He Is. But the Bible tells us that faith without works is dead, so believing is only PART of the walk.
If you were to tell someone that they must believe that there is ONE God or they will die in their sins and go to hell, they will probably remind you that you are not their Judge, and ask, "Who are you to say that I am sinning?. And who do you think you are saying that I will go to hell for believing otherwise?". "If I repent of my sins, then I am forgiven. What makes you think that I am sinning?" And then you'll hear, "I repented just like you did and I never one time actually SAW God take my sins away. I repented, and I believe that He took my sins away, just like you! Faith! His Word says that He will forgive me. That's what it's all about!"
WRONG! Here is the difference, and it goes back to repentance and baptism: If you are baptized unto any other name, names or title(s), you are simply getting wet! In Acts 2:38, and in Luke 24:47 the Bible says that baptism in His name, is for what? THE REMISSION OF SINS! You may have repented, but the remission of sins comes through repentance, AND Jesus name baptism.
The rock that Jesus has built His church on is the revelation of Oneness. And the gates of hell will not prevail against it. And the gates DID NOT prevail! He showed us that when He went into hell and came back with the keys of death, hell and the grave! And then rebuilt that temple on the third day just like He said He would!
Oneness and the understanding of it is very essential to your salvation.
Here are some scriptures that will hopefully help you see that there is only One God:
1 Samuel 2:2
1 Corinthians 8:6
1 Timothy 2:5
Bro. Jacob, Oneness Pentecostal
- Bill CLv 710 years ago
You have misrepresented the Apostolic teaching. (most people who oppose it similarly misunderstand it.) Your error is in thinking of the Godhead as persons in the first place. Scripture never implies such a thing as persons in the Godhead.
Scripture tells us over and over that God is one. Further, it tells us that God exists as one Spirit. (John 4:24; Eph. 4:4). Since we know that God is holy by nature, this one Spirit is the Holy Spirit. That is the essence of who God is.
That one Spirit caused Mary to conceive (Matt. 1:18-20). Thus, the Holy Spirit is the Father of Jesus... one and the same Spirit, not another "person." Then that same Spirit inhabited the body of His son (2 Cor. 5:19) so that ALL the fullness of God dwelt bodily in Jesus. Thus Jesus is ALL of God in flesh, not one person of God.
Is. 9:6 and John 14:8-9 identify Jesus as the Father in flesh. John 8:58 identifies Jesus as the I AM.
If Father, Son and Holy Spirit were separate persons, why didn't the apostles know it? They heard Jesus' command to baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and understood Him to be speaking of Himself and His name. As a result, every recorded Christian baptism in the New Testament was performed in Jesus' name. The titles were never used. Acts 4:12 tells us that Jesus is the only name by which we must be saved, and Col. 3:17 tells us to do everything in the name of Jesus. Clearly, Jesus is the one God in flesh. There are no other persons. He is the Father in flesh, He is the one Spirit in flesh. He is God in flesh.Source(s): Apostolic Believer in One God: JESUS