God Superior At All Times

Welcome everyone to Deeper Waters where we are diving into the ocean of truth. We’re through the Watchtower booklet of “Should You Believe In The Trinity? “Right now, we’re discussing the objections that the Watchtower raises. Tonight’s will be similar to last night’s, but there are some different objections.

The idea that the Watchtower wants to show is that God is superior at all times, yet once again they are making “The Father” synonymous with God. When God says “This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved” the Watchtower asks if God was saying that he was His Son, sent Himself, and approved Himself.

It’s a shame any Christian would fall for such a statement. I hope readers of this blog are better informed and realize that the Watchtower has presented a straw man. Are we to think none of the Trinitarians in church history noticed that the Father sent the Son?

No. It’s not that God the Father sent God the Father. God the Father sent God the Son. There is no contradiction there and as we pointed out yesterday, there is nothing about superiority since it does not effect ontology, the being that one is. What the Watchtower has done is actually give a fine argument against modalism. In doing so, they’re ironically making a point Trinitarians WANT to be made.

Does the giving of authority indicate superiority? Not unless every time in human history a boss has promoted someone it’s been because they are superior. Would Caesar be superior to a governor by ontology? Would the centurion would be superior to the soldiers that he sent to talk to Jesus? The Watchtower consistently confuses function with essence.

The Watchtower says that Jesus told the mother of James and John that to sit at his right and left belonged to his Father, that is, God. However, here the Watchtower makes clear their misrepresentation. They have equated God with the Father so that any time you make a case for Jesus being God, they think you are saying he is the Father. If you demonstrate that Jesus is not the Father then, for a follower of the Watchtower, you demonstrate that he is not God. This only works however if God is unipersonal, which the Watchtower has yet to demonstrate.

The Watchtower returns to their straw man with Jesus praying about the cross and asking if the cup could be removed. Was Jesus praying to himself or to part of himself? No. This is confusing Jesus with the Father and confusing Jesus with the entirety of the Trinity. No Trinitarian makes these kinds of arguments, yet here the Watchtower tries to present to people that they are giving an honest impression of the Trinity.

For the sake of argument, I and other Trinitarians could be entirely wrong on what we believe. We’re not, but I could say that for the sake of argument, I’d grant that. That does not mean the criticisms of the Watchtower are true. You can have bad arguments against a false position. I’m not a believer in macroevolutionary theory at the moment for instance, but I know that there are bad arguments against it that should not be used. A lot of Christians use them thinking since they’re arguing against a position they believe to be false, they’re serving God. God is best served by good arguments, not bad ones. If you think your arguments are good, they should be enough to make the other side at least think their position is being fairly represented.

The Watchtower also says that if Jesus was God, then Habakkuk 1:12 is wrong as it says God does not die. However, did God die? No. The human being who happens to have the same ontological nature as God died. The deity did not die however. The Bible says that the highest heavens cannot contain God in 1 Kings 8, yet when we read in the Israel wanderings, we see that God dwelt in the tabernacle. Can a tabernacle contain God? Then if so, 1 Kings 8 is wrong.

No. God’s presence was made manifest in areas like the tabernacle. God was not limited to that place however. It’s interesting that the idea also of John 1:14 is that Jesus tabernacled among us. When Jesus died, God did not die. (In fact, the early church argued against the idea that the Father suffered throuuh Son on the cross.) The human Jesus died, but the Son as God never suffered. The death was also not a sham. He really was dead and he gave his life to God, to which God granted that life back in a new and glorified state.

What about miracles? It’s not that Jesus did miracles, but how he did them. He claimed the finger of God at work in his miracles. He claimed to do them in his name. Elijah would not have gone around saying “In my name, I command you to be healed.” Jesus did. Jesus saw his miracles as the direct act of God on Earth through his person in a unique way. He was God’s presence on Earth bringing about what would be the new kingdom.

It’s really sad to read argumentation like that of the Watchtower and sadder still that some Christians deconvert over it. We can do better. No one should deconvert over weak argumentation like this.

We shall continue next time.

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