The Man Who God Became: John 1;1, 14, 18

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth...18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known. ESV

Here John takes us back to before the creation of all things (Genesis 1:1). And there the Word was with God and was God. Meaning, Whom the Word was with the Word was. The Word, Who is God, became flesh and tabernacled among us. He pitched His tent. Similarly, in the days of Moses, God dwelt in the Tabernacle in the wilderness (Exodus 25:8-9, 33:7). An agent, a plan, another person or representative did not tabernacle therein, but God Himself.

Became flesh does not mean God ceased being God or that He even had divine flesh. It means He added to Himself humanity. God took on human nature to live among humanity, the One who is fully God and fully man. Glory refers back to the Old Testament where the presence of God was manifested in a variety of ways. This glory represented the very presence of God, and not an agent or representative of God.

The only Son from the Father: Jesus is also the Son of God, not in the sense of being a created being or merely a human body. But in the sense that a Son is exactly like His Father in all attributes. The term “only” here means unique or one of a kind, as in the case of Isaac, who is called Abraham's only son, but was not actually the only son of Abraham. Therefore, it implies the Son is unique or one of a kind.

No one has ever seen God, but the only God, who comes from the bosom of the Father declares Him. Meaning no one has ever seen God in a full or complete way. This is not two gods nor two separate persons but the Christ who reveals God is God Himself. I can say that no one can see the back of their head. That would be a true statement. Yet, with a mirror I can see the back of my head. Jesus reveals and explains God in a way that can be visible to the mortal eye. No mere man, angel or representative can do this. Jesus is the Almighty God in flesh.


Is Genesis 19:24 Evidence for the Trinity?

Genesis 19:24 Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven; KJV

In efforts to support their doctrines well-meaning but perhaps over zealous Trinitarians appeal to this verse to imply more than one person in the nature of God. At the very least they want this verse to give us some implication of the Trinity. Notice the remarks of John Wesley from his Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible:

"Then the Lord rained - from the Lord - God the Son, from God the Father, for the Father has committed all judgment to the Son. He that is the Saviour will be the destroyer of those that reject the salvation."

Ironcially, Trinitarian apologist James R. White has also utilized this text in debates attempting to make a similar argument. Such Trinitarians are thinking that there is one Lord who rained down upon Sodom and Gomorrah and yet another, within the same text and using the same noun, who also rains down. By necessity this conclusion would imply that there are two Lords at work here. Yet, the Lord of the Old Testament is repeatedly said to be one and never two or three (Deuteronomy 6:4). There is not just one Lord, but the Lord is one. Let's look at this verse closer to see what could be happening. Consider some other translations of this text:

NET | ‎Then the LORD rained down sulfur and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah. It was sent down from the sky by the LORD.

NIV| Then the LORD rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah—from the LORD out of the heavens.

TEV| Suddenly the LORD rained burning sulfur on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah

 The NET actually makes two sentences out of the verse and the NIV uses the dash. Both are emphasizing the source of the destruction is from the Lord above. Notice that the KJV had "brimstone and fire" where as the above translations have "sulfur and fire" and "burning sulfur" since in the context they are actually to be understood as one and the same. The TEV actually does not include the second reference to the Lord in their translation indication it is the same Lord in either case. Notice the NKJV rendering below:

NKJV | ‎Then the LORD rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah, from the LORD out of the heavens.

The NKJV adds the comma to separate the second instance of Lord to more clearly indicate that the second instance is indicating or emphasizing the source. It is not an indication of a second person in the Trinity nor does it indicate the Lord is actually a divine being comprised of more than one person. Notice 2 Chronicles 9:2 from the KJV:

KJV| And Solomon told her all her questions: and there was nothing hid from Solomon which he told her not.

Here the noun Solomon is repeated for emphasis, not to point out that Solomon is actually two persons in one being or that another person named Solomon has suddenly entered the context. Solomon answered all of her questions. Meaning there was nothing hidden from Solomon that he could not explain to her. The second reference helps to shed light or emphasize information disclosed in the first. Notice the following two later verses which summarize the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah:

Deuteronomy 29:23 the whole land burned out with brimstone and salt, nothing sown and nothing growing, where no plant can sprout, an overthrow like that of Sodom and Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim, which the LORD overthrew in his anger and wrath--ESV

2 Peter 2:6 ESV  if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly; ESV

In both accounts the Lord which destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah with burning sulfur is described with singular personal pronouns like "his" and "he". Therefore, if Genesis 19:24 was teaching that more than one divine person was involved in the destruction it was lost upon Moses and Peter for they certainly never recorded it in any way. Instead, they refer to the Lord of Israel as uni-personal. Trinitarians should rethink such arguments and more closely align their view of the God of Israel to that of Biblical monotheism.

Archaeology and the Kings of Israel

Dr. J.R. Price notes that “The person of King David looms large on the pages of both the Old and New Testaments, being mentioned some 1,048 times.”[i] Such an individual is pivotal to understanding the Bible story and even the lineage and coming of the Messiah—Jesus Christ—who will set up His earthly kingdom to rule and reign from the Throne of David. Needless to say there is much at stake both historically and theologically speaking. 

For many years it was claimed that King David never existed. For example, Dame Kathleen Kenyon wrote:

“To many people it seems remarkable that David and Solomon still remain unknown outside the Old Testament or literary sources derived directly from it. No extra-Biblical inscription, either from Palestine or from a neighboring country, has yet been found to contain a reference to them.”[ii]

In 1868 the Mesha Stele or Moabite Stone was discovered at Dibon which is in modern Jordan. Epigrapher Andre Lemaire believes that a disputed reading in the text, based on the Tel Dan inscription, can be understood as the “house of David”. In 1993 and 1994 an Aramaic monumental inscription, commissioned by a Syrian king, was discovered in Tel Dan, Israel. 

The portion of the text that has been preserved lists eight Biblical kings dating it to about 841 B.C. The names “Joram” and “Ahab” which are mention in 2 Kings 3 were found. Joram was King of Israel from roughtly 852 to 841 B.C. and Ahab was King of Israel from roughly 874 to 853 B.C. The names Ahaziah and Jehoram (See 2 Kings 8:250, both Kings of Israel, were also found on the inscription. These inscriptions vividly demonstrate with extra-Biblical accounts that such Biblical figures are more than legend or myth but real figures in history.

[i] Price, Randall. The Stones Cry Out: What Archaeology Reveals about the Truth of the Bible. Eugene, Or.: Harvest House, 1997. (161)

[ii] Kathleen, Kenyon. The Bible and Recent Archaeology, rev. ed. By P.R.S. Moorey (Atlanta; John Knox Press, 1987), p. 85


Supposed Bible Contradictions: The Sermon on the Mount

Hill of the Beatitudes

16) Matthew 5:1-2 Christ preached his first sermon on the mount.  Luke 6:17 & 20 Christ preached his first sermon in the plain.
Some would suggest that there is a contradiction in the Sermon on the Mount accounts in the New Testament between Matthew 5:1-2 and Luke 6:17-49. The objection above creates a false distinction between the accounts. The objections appears to be something like, "Was Christ's first sermon on the mount or in the plain? It can't be both." As we established earlier we should evaluate the claim and determine if there be any contradiction whatsoever. Are there alternative explanations? It seems there are at least two plausible explanations:

1) They are the same sermon but Matthew and Luke give summaries that highlight different parts or emphasis of that sermon.

2) They are two different sermons but have similar content as is common in preaching.

Apparently, a contradiction is not the necessary conclusion here. Matthew 4:23-25 records:

23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people. 24 Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them. 25 Great multitudes followed Him — from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan. NKJV

 It is clear from vs. 23 that Jesus went throughout all of Galilee preaching. Meaning He preached in more than one location. The noun for "synagogues" is also in the plural form which indicates He preached in more than one. Yet, in different locations and in different places it is said He preached the "gospel of the kingdom" which by necessity includes overlapping content. Therefore, it is quite possible that Jesus, while able to introduce new content at will, also preached the same thing repeatedly. Notice the following excerpt from Matthew 14:

13 When Jesus heard it, He departed from there by boat to a deserted place by Himself. But when the multitudes heard it, they followed Him on foot from the cities. 14 And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick. 15 When it was evening, His disciples came to Him, saying, "This is a deserted place, and the hour is already late. Send the multitudes away, that they may go into the villages and buy themselves food." NKJV

It is clear from vs. 13 that Jesus, initially, was intending go to a "deserted place" to be by Himself. Yet, multitudes of people, following on foot, moved Him with "compassion for them" and He began ministering to them instead. After time had passed and it became evening the disciples suggested they be sent away because they still had to travel, by foot, back into the villages to buy food. Apparently, Jesus spent many hours with the multitudes ministering to them with miracles and teaching. It would be quite logical to conclude then that the sermons were long and therefore capable of having certain parts emphasized more than others. Craig L. Blomberg notes:

"Luke refers to Jesus’ speaking on a “level place,” but since Jesus has been in the mountains (cf. 6:12 with 6:17), Luke scarcely contradicts Matthew. Both writers envisage a plateau in a hilly area."(1)

In Matthew 5:1 it appears that Jesus is initially teaching the disciples. Yet, in Matthew 7:28 it is obvious that others had gathered. It must not be assumed that Jesus did not relocate or that parts of this sermon were not delivered in differing locations. In fact, if one thinks of a "sermon" here in the traditional modern sense then one has already imported too much into the text.

Matthew simply records that Jesus went up on a mountainside so that His disciples could be nearer to Him and then came down with them to a level place yet still in the mountain. The claim that the Sermon on the Mount is a contradiction is simply false. It begins with a faulty assumption and does not allow the Scriptural data to speak for itself. Instead the assumption that a contradiction is to be found is read back into the text. Such an assumption is not necessary and unwarranted. 


1) Craig Blomberg, Matthew, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1992). 97.

Adversus Trinitas

"...unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins." (John 8:24 ESV)