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New Testament
Christianity

Where does the Trinity originate?

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May 30, 2016 4:51PM

According to the New Bible Dictionary: "The term 'Trinity' is not itself found in the Bible. It was first used by Tertullian at the close of the 2nd century, but received wide currency [common use in intellectual discussion] and formal elucidation [clarification] only in the 4th and 5 centuries" (1996, "Trinity").

It further explains that "the formal doctrine of the Trinity was the result of several inadequate attempts to explain who and what the Christian God is...To deal with these problems the Church Fathers met in [A.D.] 325 at the Council of Nicaea to set out an orthodox biblical definition concerning the divine identity." However, it would not be until 381 A.D. at the Council of Constantinople that the divinity of the Spirit was affirmed (ibid.).

This is a manmade concept and not found anywhere in the Bible. So many have made surprising admissions about the Trinity - "an absolute mystery," "mysterious in its origin and its content," "impossible for Christians actually to understand," " unintelligible," "misunderstood," "presents strange paradoxes" and "widely disputed." One would have to question then why/how a doctrine on which billions of people base their faith and salvation is accepted. The Apostle Paul was inspired to tell us in 1 Corinthians 14:33 that "God is not the author of confusion" yet this doctrine of men is total confusion.

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July 15, 2011 4:44PM

There is no mention of the Trinity in the Bible. In fact, Marks' Gospel has Jesus deny being God, saying (10:18): "Why call me good. There is none good but God." This is quite inconsistent with later Christian belief in the Holy Trinity.

Some point out that a biblical passage known as the "Johannine Comma" (1 John 5:7) refers indirectly to the concept of the Trinity, but this verse was not in the earliest Greek manuscripts, first appearing in a Latin copy in the fifth century. So rather than providing biblical support for the Trinity, the Johannine Comma simply confirms that the concept had been accepted as doctrine by the fifth century.

By the third century, Church Fathers were debating the nature of the relationship between Jesus and God, with some influential leaders saying that they (and the Holy Spirit) were as one, while other, equally influential leaders were opposed. The concept that Jesus and God were of one substance was proposed by Bishop Alexander at the Council of Nicaea, against strong opposition. This became the formal foundation for the Holy Trinity, although it was almost abandoned over the ensuing decades. Emperor Theodosius, at the end of the fourth century finally decreed that the matter was settled, and that Jesus was of one substance with God.