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Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10108] Wed, 30 October 2013 20:46 Go to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
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Christians, Jewish people and Muslims all claim that God is one (as stated explicitly in each of their Scriptures), but they all disagree on the nature of God. Rather than fight over the nature of God, let me propose a slightly different approach.

Step back from theology altogether for a moment. To be intellectually honest with each other, if were going to claim that God is one, it may help to start with a clear understanding of what we mean by "one." (Otherwise, when we say that God is one we really have no idea what we're talking about.)

This will not be immediately evident why I take such a seemingly trivial route, but please hear me out.

Let's answer the question: What exactly is this concept we call one? How might we define it?

If you look in the dictionary you will find that you can trace the definition from synonym to synonym and back again. The definition goes around in circles and there is no final source for the value of one. So we must consider something more firm.

Let's use mathematics, since one is primarily a numerical concept. You might try to say, "Well, one is one, of course."
1=1

Of course, one must equal itself, but this will not work as a definition. The same statement will work for anything we try to define. It is therefore meaningless as a definition. If you take any concept (x) you can use the exact same expression to describe that concept: x=x. If I tell you that a thing is a thing, that will tell you nothing about what that thing actually is.

We must find an expression that distinguishes "one" as unique from all other concepts. The definition must be something more than 1=1, but it cannot be less, because one must equal itself.

Let's pose a second question: Does one exist? Of course it does. We have a way to demonstrate non-existence mathematically, so we also have a way to demonstrate existence. Any number divided by zero "does not exist" or is "undefined." So then, to bring any number into existence, it must have a denominator of 1.
If one exists, it must have a denominator of one.
1/1=1

This statement actually makes one unique, because no other number can take the same relationship with itself. (Consider n/n=1, not n) So we have a point of uniqueness for the value of one and a concrete way to identify it: It is the only number that can equal itself when divided by itself. That means that this expression (1/1=1) works as a basic definition for the value of one.

Now let's examine "one" in light of this definition for a moment and see what inherent properties we can find:

It is a self-contained statement of "being," because the equal sign is a form of the word "to be."

It is an eternal statement: It can never be false, meaning it has neither beginning nor end.

It is simultaneously composed of three operands, or three functional positions: Numerator, Denominator and Result. These operands perform uniquely different functions from each other, but each must exist together for either of the others to exist.

Each operand is equal in value (each 1)

Each operand is equally important: we cannot remove one and still have a valid definition for the value of one.

It is a self-existent expression, because it defined purely in terms of itself.

Now here is why I go this route:
In Deuteronomy 6:4, John 10:30 and even in the Quran (http://quran.com/4/171), God (or Allah) identifies himself with the idea of "one" in an unqualified sense. Assuming that God is telling the truth, then the concept of one must reflect God's own nature. After all, God could not use a concept to describe himself if that concept was in conflict with his nature or failed to describe him accurately. So then, the properties of "one" must be fully consistent with God's nature. Considering what we have explored regarding the meaning of "one," it is logically necessary to say that,

If A) God exists, and B) God is one, then by definition, God must be a self-existent, eternal being composed of three persons each of which are equal in value, equal in importance yet uniquely different in role and function.

Now consider: We have not actually figured out the value of one except to say that whatever it is, it is irreducible. In fact, we have just demonstrated the impossibility of knowing the actual value of one. Whatever "one" is, it is equal to itself and denominated by itself, but it decides its own value. Basically, whatever "one" is, "One will be what One will be."

Consider Exodus 3:13-14:
"Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?”

God said to Moses, “I will be what I will be."



Any thoughts? How do you react? Does this approach have any doctrinal error or logical fallacy that I'm not seeing? Can you think of any Scripture references that would either disqualify or substantiate this approach?
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10109 is a reply to message #10108 ] Wed, 30 October 2013 21:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wishing34  is currently offline wishing34
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Greetings Micheal,


Seems that the use of math does not add any benefit to merely believing
the verses and verifying what the word "one" means. Much scholarship is available
to know what "one" or "Echad" meant to the Hebrews.

There could be a problem with "modeling" the Godhead in a math way.

If you make a mathmatical model to understand "one" ( much like modeling
the trajectory of a baseball mathematicallly ) then what significance might
be given to variations - example: 71/71 = 1. Shall we apply a special meaning now
to 71 ? Of course any number could replace 71 .

Much harm can be done when people mix numbers and the Scriptures - ex: Numerics,
Gematria, bible codes. Odd conclusions can be reached.

Easier to just do study the Scripture words in English and use the original languages as needed.





Jman







---sig------------------------------------------------------ ------------

At the time of this post . . .

FA, the satellites, the spinoffs,and the FA diaspora have been having church
without apostles for 41 years and 303 days.
Initial start date 1/1/72


Recommended: No faith stands that strongly impact our (our children's) lives until we figure out
why the signs and wonders are missing. Something is wrong.







Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10111 is a reply to message #10108 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 02:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Marilyn Crow  is currently offline Marilyn Crow
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Hi Michael,

I did appreciate your `mathematical approach,` to explain an aspect of the `oneness` of God. God made mathematics, & of course it would therefore reflect Him in some way & also so that we could understand about Him. This approach may only appeal to those who like `maths.` anyway I have a few thoughts also.

In Revelation 4 : 2 it says -

`behold a throne set in heaven, & One sat on the throne...`(Rev. 4: 2)

The word `One,` is the Greek word `allelon,` meaning one together, plural.


The plurarity of the word `One` shows us the relationship of the Father & the Son & Holy Spirit. The terms Father, Son do not denote a subordinate relationship but shows the express image of personality.

`He (Christ)...being the brightness of His (the Father`s) glory & the express image of His person.` (Heb. 1: 3)

Christ is the exact substance of being in mind, will & heart. These are marks of Divine Sonship.

`I & My Father are one.` (John 10: 30)


The Son has an insight & personal apprehension of the Father such as no one else possesses, which indicate His unity in the Godhead. Only Deity can reveal Deity, only God can express Godhead, & only Sonship can manifest Fatherhood, because the very soul of Sonship is likeness of will.


`For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.` (John 6: 38)

And you Michael having a good mathematical mind by God will be able to see the number `1` in its various modes in the above.

God bless & keep revealing God to others in His creation.












Marilyn C
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10113 is a reply to message #10111 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 05:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
william  is currently offline william
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Marilyn Crow wrote on Thu, 31 October 2013 01:33


In Revelation 4 : 2 it says -

`behold a throne set in heaven, & One sat on the throne...`(Rev. 4: 2)

The word `One,` is the Greek word `allelon,` meaning one together, plural.




What's up here? "allelon" (ἀλλήλων) does not occur in the passage? What Greek version are you using?

Blessings,
William


I want to believe!
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10117 is a reply to message #10113 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 15:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Marilyn Crow  is currently offline Marilyn Crow
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Hi William,

I used my `Strong`s Concordance,`& looked up the word `one.` It gave me the number `240,` which led me to the Greek dictionary at the back.

240 - Gk. word `allelon,` plural......together.

Hope that explains it. You may have a Bible with the Greek alongside. Is there a difference here?

Marilyn.


Marilyn C
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10122 is a reply to message #10109 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 17:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
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Jman,

Thanks for your response. You're right, nor should it add anything to what we believe. At the very best it may verify it. My understanding of the word "echad" is that it is primarily one in unity though occasionally one numerically. The first use we see is when Adam and Eve became one (echad) flesh. So we rightfully can interpret Deuteronomy as one in unity. Original language is not my strong point though, so I must be careful.

I see this as having strong support in the fact that God uses the term "one" in reference to himself. It's not an association that I have given to God, but one that He made which I'm exploring.

I have actually thought about how all other numbers reduce to one in the same relationship. While I don't think it's necessary to go there, I think that there is actually room for meaning there as well:
Any other value that tries to determine its own substance ultimately loses its nature and the value is lost. Similarly, anyone who lives for himself views himself as god. In the end, his nature reduces and is destroyed. But that's about as far as that can be taken.

By the way, there is more that I had forgotten in the original post.

The Numerator is a concept that "just is" It doesn't come from anywhere and is not created.

The Result is the exact representation of the Numerator and the full expression of its value. From the other end, The Numerator generates the value of the Result, and there can be only one Result of that expression.

The Denominator is a logical consequence from the existence of the equality. It proceeds from the other two. Furthermore, the Denominator is the operand performing all of the action: It divides the Numerator and expresses (or reveals) the Result. (1 Corinthians 2:9-14)

Also, if you consider any other number it does not exist until it is given a denominator of one. (the Creation) The concept of a thing exists because of the Numerator, it is substantiated by the Denominator, and it is expressed by the Result.

Now there is a limit to the usefulness of this model. It may show only divine nature, and cannot show the acquired human nature of the Son. It can show something of what happened on Earth though. When the Son was anointed by the Spirit at baptism, one might say that he was "multiplied" with power for ministry.

The second form of the definition of "one" can be expressed as
1=1X1
where the denominator moves over to become the multiplier. Like I said, this starts to move into the human side of Christ, so it loses its usefulness.

It isn't as spiritually useful as the allusion that God gave us of "Father and Son," but it may be intellectually useful for those who find that a stumbling block.

I see all of this as useful for demonstrating the strict logical consistency of the doctrine. Muslims and other monotheists, even Oneness Pentecostals, are very quick to point out what they see as a "contradiction," calling it illogical nonsense.

Now when they say insist that God is one, I might ask what precisely they mean by one. This may break down (or it may be further verified) at some point if someone finds a different definition for the value of one. I haven't been able to find one though.

The reason I'm taking this online is because I've been trying to explore it for the last two years and haven't found anything explicitly wrong with it. That leaves me uncertain, because I haven't been able to find anything quite similar to this in the 1600 years since this doctrine was hashed out in the Athanasian Creed. If I'm wrong about it that's fine, but I can't seem to dismiss the issue without finding a clear reason why it might break down.

[Updated on: Thu, 31 October 2013 17:49]

Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10123 is a reply to message #10111 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 17:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
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Marilyn,

Thank you for those verses. I had considered a few of them, see my previous response to Jman.

There are at least two way that the concept of "one" is used, and only one of them is what we're looking for in this.
There are other ways that one is used: as a noun and as an adjective.

God seems to identify himself as "one" in the sense of the concept of it (as well as the description of it), whereas other things are only described as "one" in the sense of being single, without being identified with "one."
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10124 is a reply to message #10123 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 18:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wishing34  is currently offline wishing34
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Micheal,

The whole concept of using math to explain/model the Godhead is a non-starter for me.

In normal science we model things mathematically and then use the math to make predictions
to advance the science or to predict results from specific data points - those fun "Eureka" moments.

I just do not see the same usage of math with the Scriptures. I do not anticipate a payoff.

As I said above, various math applications to the Scriptures can lead down dead ends or even
towards wrong doctrines.

So, to me, the math usage has potential risk of bad things without an up side.



If you are attempting to use math to instruct a non-trinitarian friend it seems
to me the Scripture verses that apply would be the most powerful witness.







Jman




---sig------------------------------------------------------ ------------

At the time of this post . . .

FA, the satellites, the spinoffs,and the FA diaspora have been having church
without apostles for 41 years and 304 days.
Initial start date 1/1/72


Recommended: No faith stands that strongly impact our (our children's) lives until we figure out
why the signs and wonders are missing. Something is wrong.


[Updated on: Thu, 31 October 2013 18:21]






Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10125 is a reply to message #10117 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 18:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
william  is currently offline william
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Marilyn Crow wrote on Thu, 31 October 2013 14:56

Hi William,

I used my `Strong`s Concordance,`& looked up the word `one.` It gave me the number `240,` which led me to the Greek dictionary at the back.

240 - Gk. word `allelon,` plural......together.

Hope that explains it. You may have a Bible with the Greek alongside. Is there a difference here?

Marilyn.


The verse you quoted-- Rev 4:2-- does not contain "allelon" (ἀλλήλων).

I find it easier to use the online Blue Letter Bible for looking up verses and the Strong numbers are listed there as well. For instance if you hold your mouse over the passage -- Rev 4:2 and then click on the passage when it is displayed in the pop-up, it will bring up the Blue Letter Bible tool. You can then select the "Tools" button to see cross references, interlinear, dictionaries, etc.. All of the Greek words are listed in the passage along with the corresponding Strong numbers and some other goodies.

Blessings,
William


I want to believe!
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10126 is a reply to message #10125 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 18:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
william  is currently offline william
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I forgot to mention, and you probably know this already, but there are different Greek words that can be translated as "one".

Blessings,
William


I want to believe!
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10128 is a reply to message #10126 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 19:42 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
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William,

Esword showed the same thing, the word "one" is not in the original Greek. It only showed it in italics. I am surprised the Strongs translated it in the Greek.

William do you have a link for downloading the Blue Bible software?

Did not know if you have to pay for it or if it was free.

Gary



Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10130 is a reply to message #10128 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 20:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
william  is currently offline william
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I don't think they (Blue Letter Bible) have any software that you could download to your computer, it's mostly an online tool, but they do have an Ipad or an Iphone application that you can download.

I use that eSword software you mentioned on my computer and it is amazing how much stuff you can beef it up with!

Another good one for your computer is called theWord. I think there may even be more modules for theWord than eSword.

Blessings,
William


I want to believe!
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10132 is a reply to message #10128 ] Thu, 31 October 2013 21:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
william  is currently offline william
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Also Gary, I might have assumed too much when I was referring to the Blue Letter Bible. As you read forum messages and if you see a verse is listed (like here: Mat 6:33) all you do is hold your mouse over the verse and the passage pops up. Click the link if you want more tools (it will open up on a new page). In other words you don't have to have anything installed on your computer to have that work for you!

Blessings,
William


[Updated on: Thu, 31 October 2013 21:05]


I want to believe!
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10134 is a reply to message #10132 ] Fri, 01 November 2013 00:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
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William

Thanks for all the information here.

I like ESword and use it a lot.

The thing about this post is it sounds to much like Gematria which comes from the teachings of the Kabbalah.

Quote:

Gematria or gimatria (Hebrew: גימטריא/גימטריה‎ gēmaṭriyā) is a traditional Jewish system of assigning numerical value to a word or phrase, in the belief that words or phrases with identical numerical values bear some relation to each other, or bear some relation to the number itself as it may apply to a person's age, the calendar year, or the like. Although the term is Hebrew, it most likely derives from Greek geōmetriā, "geometry", which was used as a translation of gēmaṭriyā, though some scholars believe it to derive from Greek grammateia, rather; it's possible that both words had an influence on the formation of the Hebrew word. (Some also hold it to derive from the order of the Greek alphabet, gamma being the third letter of the Greek alphabet (gamma + tria).) The word has been extant in English since the 17th century from translations of works by Giovanni Pico della Mirandola. Although ostensibly derived from Greek, it is largely used in Jewish texts, notably in those associated with the Kabbalah.



I thought we had a post on this somewhere but maybe not.

I do not believe there is secret codes in the Bible.

I was on a Christian Forum years ago and did not realize that the whole forum was followers of secret Bible codes involving Gematria.


I have a strange feeling this is an open door to delusion.

Gary



Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10137 is a reply to message #10125 ] Fri, 01 November 2013 01:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Marilyn Crow  is currently offline Marilyn Crow
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Hi William,

I have just done what you said concerning the `Blue letter,` reference & found out as you said that the word `one,` actually is incorporated in the next word `sitting,` meaning `one sat.`
So thank you very much for the guide to the link & the correction. So obviously I was reading the Strong`s wrong & inferring that the last number up the page included that scripture in Rev. 4: 2 as well. Not so. I appreciate your teaching & have learnt some more. We each learn from each other in the Body, how great is that. Thanks again.


Marilyn C
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10142 is a reply to message #10108 ] Fri, 01 November 2013 21:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
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I have only heard of gematria a few times and have never looked into it so I don't know enough about it to say anything. However, from what you describe of gematria, I don't think this is quite the same. I'm not assigning a numerical value to the idea of "one" because it already is a numerical concept. I'm not assigning the idea of one to the nature of God, because he has already referred to himself using that concept without my effort. Whether Deuteronomy 6:4 is referring to his singleness as a being, to his unity as a being, or to something else, it's still the same concept that is being used which has each of those applications. This is an attempt to better understand what that concept is and how God might be describing himself in that passage.

You're certainly right that Scripture is the most powerful witness, in fact it's the only true witness, because God speaks through his own words and by the power of his Spirit. It would be much easier to dismiss this from my curiosity if I could find a clear error with it. It may very well lead down a dead end as you say, but I'd like to at least see where that end is before I leave the subject. If nothing else, I'll then be able to clearly explain to others how far it goes and no farther.

To the others: Scripture4all is a source I've often used, though it doesn't have the lexicon attached. When I have some time I'll have to spend some more of it on those other sites you all have mentioned.
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10143 is a reply to message #10142 ] Fri, 01 November 2013 22:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wishing34  is currently offline wishing34
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Micheal,

I think you are accurate in how you contrast your concept as being different from
gematria.





Jman





---sig------------------------------------------------------ ------------

At the time of this post . . .

FA, the satellites, the spinoffs,and the FA diaspora have been having church
without apostles for 41 years and 305 days.
Initial start date 1/1/72


Recommended: No faith stands that strongly impact our (our children's) lives until we figure out
why the signs and wonders are missing. Something is wrong.







Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10145 is a reply to message #10142 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 00:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
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Michael R wrote on Fri, 01 November 2013 20:21

I have only heard of gematria a few times and have never looked into it so I don't know enough about it to say anything. However, from what you describe of gematria, I don't think this is quite the same. I'm not assigning a numerical value to the idea of "one" because it already is a numerical concept. I'm not assigning the idea of one to the nature of God, because he has already referred to himself using that concept without my effort. Whether Deuteronomy 6:4 is referring to his singleness as a being, to his unity as a being, or to something else, it's still the same concept that is being used which has each of those applications. This is an attempt to better understand what that concept is and how God might be describing himself in that passage.

You're certainly right that Scripture is the most powerful witness, in fact it's the only true witness, because God speaks through his own words and by the power of his Spirit. It would be much easier to dismiss this from my curiosity if I could find a clear error with it. It may very well lead down a dead end as you say, but I'd like to at least see where that end is before I leave the subject. If nothing else, I'll then be able to clearly explain to others how far it goes and no farther.

To the others: Scripture4all is a source I've often used, though it doesn't have the lexicon attached. When I have some time I'll have to spend some more of it on those other sites you all have mentioned.


Michael R,

I'm not real good with math even though I use it every day in my line of work.

I guess I do not understand "what" exactly your saying about this concept.

I at times have tried to understand the fact that God has always been, from all eternity there was always a God. Your mind can only go back so far and never fully understand the concept of being eternal. There never was a "time", using our unit to measure that there was not a God. He was always there is mind boggling.

That is so fantastic to me. It makes you feel very small in this universe.

I went back and read your original post and I guess I do not understand enough math to realize what you are saying. For me God is one is just a fact.

I am glad your not into gematria. It's becoming popular in some groups out there, using computers to find hidden secrets about God and future events.

Maybe if you share more on this I will see or understand what your saying here.

Lord Bless,
Gary




Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10147 is a reply to message #10145 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 00:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
GWB  is currently offline GWB
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All of this math is over my head. I do know that our Father is finite.

A close family member threw out her numbers everyday and lives by them. It is sad. Nobody wants to be, think, feel or look like her. She is despised because of her cold and evil heart. What a toll the occult has taken on them.

I applaud your interest in math. Jesus will help you find the right answers. Smile


Shalom,

GWB

"Be still and know that I am God."
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10158 is a reply to message #10145 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 17:26 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
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Gary,

I'm taking the Deuteronomy verse and asking a child's question: What is one?

One is a quantity which must have its own intrinsic value. Ever the age at which we learned to count using our fingers, we've taken for granted our idea of one enough to be able to use it to describe things. Obviously this is an attempt to understand it at a much more foundational level than that.

Essentially what I'm doing is trying to understand a theoretical, or philosophical, idea of "one." I'm taking it from being an adjective that describes things (one tree, one car, etc.) and looking at its essence as a noun (one-ness itself).

Along the way I'm observing that, whatever this thing called "one" is, it is strikingly similar to all of our established Church teaching about the Tri-personal nature of God. In my first reply to Jman I added some parts that I had forgotten to include in the original post. There I mainly focused on the three different components of the equation (Numerator, Denominator and Result).

There are two steps that I've taken to arrive at a definition for the concept of "oneness." The first step is to show the obvious: that it must equal itself. The second step is to show that it exists. I'm not really sure that this is mathematics, but it is using the same notation as mathematics, so for lack of a better word I'm calling it that. Perhaps it is more philosophical than mathematical.

I stop once I establish this, because I realized that I had obtained what I was looking for: A definition is a point of uniqueness that makes it different than everything else. It might be possible to define it more narrowly than that, but it cannot be defined as anything less than that.

1/1=1 and the similar equation 1=1x1 are the simplest unique expressions for the value of one. Unlike dictionary definitions, this is the final source definition of "one" because it is defined solely in terms of itself. That means there is no other concept that we have to find a definition for.

Conversely, if we used a dictionary we would have to look up the definitions of other words used in the definition of "one," and then the definitions of those definitions, and so one. That process would repeat itself infinitely without finding a final definition. Here we have found it using arithmetic activities like division, equality, and multiplication.


This goes much farther than any creation-based illustration goes, because it allows us to make a simple logical deduction based on two premises:
if God exists, and
if God is one,
then by definition (definition of one), God must be a tri-personal being as we have already understood him in the creeds.

Ironically, buried within the definition of one is the proof that the full, true value of One can be known only to One itself. This is because its value is defined exclusively in terms of itself. So if God is one, we might use this to explain "how" God is (tri-personal, etc.), but not "what" God is (his substance). That can only be known through "one" revealing itself, and that happens in the Word, both written and Living.

In regard to what eternal means, my mind was stretched a bit when I noticed the ideas of "true" and "false." Any statement that can never be false is eternally true.

This could be taken a step further to explain why souls are not annihilated in the death of the body.
The Numerator of "one" is a concept that "just is." The Numerators of every other number "just are" because they are founded on the "just is" nature of "one." However the Expression of those values are contingent on the presence of the Denominator. As we noticed earlier, every number must have a denominator of One to exist. So when the Denominator is removed, the Result ceases to be expressed, and the equation (the being) is destroyed, yet the Numerator necessarily exists and cannot be destroyed because it is implied by the existence of the Numerator of one. We might restate this by saying that the soul eternally exists as a concept in the mind of God.

P.S. A lot of this I've had to think very carefully about and many times over in the last two years to be sure of how it fit together. Go easy on yourself. Smile I had to take Calculus 1 twice and Calculus 2 three times before I passed. It was during the second time through Calc 2 that something random and off-topic got me started on noticing this. That's the highest math I've had to take, thankfully.

Let me know if this clears anything up for you. I'm still trying to find the best way to explain it to people.

[Updated on: Sat, 02 November 2013 17:28]

Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10159 is a reply to message #10147 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 17:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
Registered: October 2013
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GWB,

I think you meant to say infinite. Smile You're right.

And it is not necessary to try to understand all of this if you don't feel any compulsion to. God does not require possession of truth, only a love for the truth. He reveals that to us in different ways as seek him through his Word, and most of it we may not know until we are present with Him.

I'm trying to work my way through it because I happened to notice it and am curious about it. I find it fun. I guess there are other things that don't appeal to me that appeal much more to other people. Only fairly recently have I begun to enjoy reflecting on who God is and digesting his Word, even though that is what is truly important. Sad
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10160 is a reply to message #10158 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 18:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 870
Registered: August 2008
Location: Indiana
Senior Member
Quote:

Michael R wrote: This goes much farther than any creation-based illustration goes, because it allows us to make a simple logical deduction based on two premises:
if God exists, and
if God is one,
then by definition (definition of one), God must be a tri-personal being as we have already understood him in the creeds.


I think I can barely perceive what you are saying; by God saying, He is One God shows that in fact that there is three manifestations that the Bible speaks of or how else can God make the statement that He is One.

I hope that's right.

I tried to find some scriptures that showed this, then I ran across these verses;

Mark 10:18
So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.

Secondly this verse, when the spirits recognized who Jesus was;

Mark 1:24
saying, “Let us alone! What have we to do with You, Jesus of Nazareth? Did You come to destroy us? I know who You are—the Holy One of God!”

In the statement the Holy "One" of God.

To me its more then being philosophical, I think its more in the Spirit to comprehend the true Godhead. In other words its in the Spirit we understand spiritual things.

I think I can see what you are saying but not being able to put it into the right words is where I find myself.

You must be fairly educated brother. This is an interesting concept I would of never even considered.

Like I shared earlier I try to sometimes focus on "eternity". God's past, coming out of eternity to reveal Himself to us, and our living with Him for all of eternity. When we have been there for a billion, million years that we know eternity has only begun and there is no end. It will go on forever. I find this totally mind boggling. As created beings, The human mind cannot even grasp it.

Before I became a Christian I use to think that one day I would die and it would be total darkness and I would never exist anymore. It was a frightening thought at the time. I would push it from my mind and would try not to dwell on it.

Now to know that Jesus made a way for us to live forever. What Joy in that thought.

Lord Bless,
Gary





Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10163 is a reply to message #10160 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 20:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
GWB  is currently offline GWB
Messages: 713
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Location: Louisville, Ky area
Senior Member
Michael R,

Uhhh......ummm......errr....Told ya it was wayy over my brain! Smile

Laughing Laughing


Shalom,

GWB

"Be still and know that I am God."
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10164 is a reply to message #10163 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 20:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wishing34  is currently offline wishing34
Messages: 212
Registered: March 2009
Senior Member
Micheal,

Concerning the math . . .
I think you are doomed to always be in the realm of conjecture and never the realm of fact.
This will always leave you frustrated and unsatisfied.


I say this because when one begins the consideration of God in math terms it is always arbitrary.
This arbitrary-ness will always leave you without closure.


The transition to math is always ill-defined. Does each "one" represent a part of the trinity or some nebulous idea?

-----------------------

Once we are in the math realm it is arbitrary what we do.

Consider:

represent God by 1*1*1=1
Artan (1) = 45 and 225 degrees
which can be expressed as Pi/4 and 5Pi/4
since they both = Arctan (1) they can be related (not equated) (communative property - sorta)
Pi/4 ~ 5Pi/4

do you see how arbitrary it is to toss in math like this? When I am done how can I be sure
I have proved anything real at all? I will be left unsatisfied about what my math actually means.



if Pi/4 ~ 5Pi/4 then 1 ~ 5


So now I have 1 and 5 closely related -Now I need an interpretation to bring this from the
math world back into the real world. Of course whatever my theology is will color what
I do next - again it is arbitrary as I transition back to the real world.


How about since a basketball team is 5 people who operate as one I can say I
have demonstrated that God is multiple (3 in His case) that operates as one?

-----------------------------------

Did I really prove anything?
I merely expressed my theology that I had prior.


But !!!!! What if I were into these math ideas and I listened to a "Oneness" mathematician?
You can imagine what he would prove with math.
The outcome is arbitrary and therefore moldable to whatever outcome a person wants.





---------------------------



When you said

"If A) God exists, and B) God is one, then by definition, God must be a self-existent,"

I asked myself "Why?"

I do not think you can ever use the word "must" when using math like this.




It is one of those things that is fun to tinker with but cannot ever be "for sure."
I think you might be on an endless treadmill that can never satisfy.






Jman







---sig------------------------------------------------------ ------------

At the time of this post . . .

FA, the satellites, the spinoffs,and the FA diaspora have been having church
without apostles for 41 years and 306 days.
Initial start date 1/1/72


Recommended: No faith stands that strongly impact our (our children's) lives until we figure out
why the signs and wonders are missing. Something is wrong.
















Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10165 is a reply to message #10164 ] Sat, 02 November 2013 22:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
GWB  is currently offline GWB
Messages: 713
Registered: March 2008
Location: Louisville, Ky area
Senior Member
Also, I only made it through Algebra II at a local community college.

Why do we have to deal with negative numbers, x = blah, blah, blah.

Laughing Laughing Laughing

I usually love school and studying. But math...... Puke

Laughing Laughing

God is one and He manifests Himself in three different ways.

I am a wife, mother, and daughter.....just like the Bible says God is, only in masculine form. Smile

[Updated on: Sat, 02 November 2013 22:11]


Shalom,

GWB

"Be still and know that I am God."
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10176 is a reply to message #10160 ] Sun, 03 November 2013 17:25 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
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Junior Member
Gary,

That is it exactly. This is just a closer look at what this thing called "one" is. The concept of one seems to resemble our understanding of God.

The verses you mention may or may not be related though. It's hard for me to be sure whether those uses of the word "one" are descriptive of some other noun or are the noun itself. If it's an adjective, it's not the idea of one that we're talking about but a description of something else. It's the identity of one itself that we're discussing. Even the phrase "the Holy One of God" may not be related here, since "one" is use in the sense of referring to "some being" rather than to oneness.

It certainly is amazing to think about our hope in Christ! I can't understand being eternal either. At best I think we might be able to see that there are some things that are eternal even though they intersect our world, like self-existent truth.
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10178 is a reply to message #10165 ] Sun, 03 November 2013 17:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
Registered: October 2013
Junior Member
GWB,

Smile Like I said, God doesn't expect us to know everything, just to love truth, because he is Truth. Our brains couldn't handle all that much information anyway. It's amazing enough just to grasp the roles that he has given mankind in reflecting the mystery of Christ and the Church, let alone anything else.

You have to deal with negative numbers so that you can make sense of the world if you're ever upside down. Smile
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10181 is a reply to message #10164 ] Sun, 03 November 2013 19:30 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
Registered: October 2013
Junior Member
Jman,

I used the word "must" because it reflects the idea of "by definition of 'one'." It's a logical consequence following from the essential nature of oneness and from the statement that "God is one." Does that make sense?

Each one (in 1/1=1) represents each person in the union of the Trinity as well as whatever it is that God is. I suppose we could say that it is something nebulous, because we cannot know intrinsically what One is just like we can't know intrinsically what God is. The positions (or functional roles) held by each "one" we call operands. The division symbol and equal symbol are actions occurring between the operands, and they represent the inter-action between the members of the Trinity. Actually the etymologies of the words "role" "person" and "operand" are actually very useful here:

Taken from dictionary.com,
Role
Origin:
1600–10; < French rôle roll (as of paper) containing the actor's part

Person
Origin:
1175–1225; Middle English persone < Latin persōna role (in life, a play, or a tale) ( Late Latin: member of the Trinity), orig. actor's mask < Etruscan phersu (< Greek prósōpa face, mask) + -na a suffix

The word operand comes from the latin "opera" meaning "work, pains or labor." So the word "operand" may be understood as something upon which work is performed. In our context we can say that as an an operand, one is a value that is performing an action on itself to express itself.


I didn't arrive at my understanding of God because of this conjecture, but I found that the conjecture mirrors what I already knew to be true about God from Scripture. It's icing on the cake, you could say.

I've considered the model 1*1*1=1 and it doesn't work, either doctrinally or even logically. The reason doctrinally is that it is a statement containing four operands instead of three, and the reason logically is that the fourth operand is only a duplicate of one of the other three (the multiplier). The duplicate doesn't add any new information, so the equation naturally reduces to avoid redundancy.

Once we stop talking about the thing called one itself and start to use the idea of one to describe other things, there are many, many uses. But I'm trying to distinguish between One with a capital letter and one with a lowercase letter. When we say "I am one" and "you are one", what we are really saying is "I am one instance of a thing called me," and "you are one instance of a thing called you." This is not the same as the object of "One." "One" is a concept that exists apart from anything else.

In the statement you offer "arctan(1) = 45 and 225 degrees" we are using the operation (arctan) on the concept of one and discovering some other concept. This is different, because we are now dealing with new concepts that are something different (Pi/4 and 5Pi/4) than the concept of one. Also, Pi/4 and 5Pi/4 are related concepts, but they aren't identical concepts. So we could say that 1 and 5 were related in a very specific context, but not outside of that context. This is different from saying that 1 and 5 are identical
It's similar to accusing a Trinitarian of saying that 1=3. We know that 1 and 3 are used in different senses. They are related in the specific context of the Trinity, but still they are different.

When I used the operations of divide and multiply on the concept of one, the result was a value that was identical to the "one" on which the operation was performed. So one is used to express its own self, and that expression is what defines "one."

The use of One to generate concepts other than one are good examples of "and God said, "Let there be light, and there was light." In the same way, we have 2/0. "And God said, let there be two. (2/1) and there was two 2/1=2. The concept of one just used itself to bring into existence the concept of two.

When we are in the realm of numerical concepts it can in many cases be arbitrary what interpretation we make of what we are seeing, but I think this is different. I say that because God identifies himself using this specific concept. We don't have similar statements about other things. So at that point is does actually become arbitrary. This is why I suggest that the definition of "one" cannot make any observations about the human nature that God's Son acquired, but only about his divine nature. At the point of the human nature we have another kind value that we are dealing with, which there is no room to study.

There is actually a mistake I made at first when turning to the second variation of the definition (1=1*1). I had gone from 1/1=1 to 1=1*1 but then I tried to treat the second form as 1*1=1. This was nearly the same thing, except that it was a reversal of the statement that I had arrived at from 1/1=1. Once I tried using it interchangeably like that it led to some conclusions that were obviously wrong.

All that to say that in a certain sense you are right. It is very easy to make logical errors when using math concepts. I've learned that well enough ever since I was introduced to math in grade school. But this doesn't mean that valid results can't be arrived at, it just means we have to check the answer key at the end to make sure that no mistakes were made along the way.

I've tried to respond to the issues you raised, please let me know if what I said makes any sense. I really appreciate you for raising these concerns. I'm excited for it, because it allows me to see whether or not this model holds up under the watchful eye of good judgment.

We're only dealing with a single concept (one), rather than all the other concepts available in math, so whether it be true or false, the situation is pretty simple to examine.

The foundation of this rests on how we understand John 10:30 and at Deuteronomy 6:4. Whether or not God actually is identifying with the concept of one, the concept of one would still exist in the form of the definition we've been considering. Our own understanding can be wrong due to a distorted perspective, but a concept like one is rather unambiguous because it can't change.
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10189 is a reply to message #10181 ] Mon, 04 November 2013 07:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wishing34  is currently offline wishing34
Messages: 212
Registered: March 2009
Senior Member

Hi Micheal,

Literally everything we are doing here is arbitrary. Every assumption. Every assignment of meaning.
God says He is one. That is a fact. From there every choice we make to manipulate that number is arbitrary.

I think it ends up every time as unsatisfying. Nothing concrete can be accomplished.





Jman







---sig------------------------------------------------------ ------------

At the time of this post . . .

FA, the satellites, the spinoffs,and the FA diaspora have been having church
without apostles for 41 years and 308 days.
Initial start date 1/1/72


Recommended: No faith stands that strongly impact our (our children's) lives until we figure out
why the signs and wonders are missing. Something is wrong.










Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10201 is a reply to message #10189 ] Mon, 04 November 2013 17:09 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
Registered: October 2013
Junior Member
I realize that it is arbitrary to make assumptions, but what assumptions am I making beyond the fact which you mention, that God is one? I see this as an observation of the number, but how is it a manipulation of it?

I will already agree that it is unsatisfying, but on the grounds that it is not God's own words. God's Word is the only thing that is able to satisfy. I consider it worth while to examine it though.
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10204 is a reply to message #10201 ] Mon, 04 November 2013 18:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 870
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Location: Indiana
Senior Member

Michael R,

This doesn't have anything to do with the topic. But I was wondering are you in the states or from another country?

Just Wondering.

Gary



Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10205 is a reply to message #10204 ] Mon, 04 November 2013 18:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
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Junior Member
States. I'm in the St. Louis area. What about yourself?
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10208 is a reply to message #10205 ] Mon, 04 November 2013 19:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 870
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Location: Indiana
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Michael R,

The biggest town near me is Bloomington, Indiana. A college town. I have an Aunt and Uncle who live north of St. Louis, I forgot the name of the town or suburb what ever it is, its on the north border.

Were practically neighbors.

Thanks for sharing,
Gary


Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10226 is a reply to message #10208 ] Tue, 05 November 2013 17:51 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
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Sure thing!
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10227 is a reply to message #10108 ] Tue, 05 November 2013 18:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
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I guess what I'm trying to do with all of this right now is see whether the shoe fits. There are clearly many illustrations that have been attempted to depict the Trinity, yet every single one has some specific point of failure. Realizing that, and considering that for two years I've been unable to find a point of failure in this illustration, I'm turning to other minds that are much sharper than my own.

I've tried here to define the concept of one as rigidly as possible. I haven't had a chance to talk with a professor of philosophy or of mathematics, but I'm fairly confident that the definition itself is valid. I may be wrong though, so I'm posing it to others for review.

I recognize that Scripture is both the sole source of our correct knowledge of God, and also the only thing that has the ability to satisfy the soul. An illustration cannot satisfy a thirsty or hungry soul. But that is not what I'm hoping for with this. Rather, I see it as the product of loving God with the mind.

I recognize also that with our limited knowledge it is arbitrary to assign meaning to the properties that we observe in the concept of one. However, I think that when looking for such meaning Occam's Razor applies. The hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be selected. In other words, if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is reasonable to call it a duck. This is what I've tried to do.

For example, I observe that the Numerator generates the value of the Result and that the Result is the exact representation of the value of the Numerator. This is something that anyone may verify. I compare these two observations to the statements of Scripture, that the Father begets the Son (John 3:16) and that the Son is the exact representation of the Father (Hebrews 1:3).

To test the strength of this correlation we can study structure and meaning of both sets of statements. "Numerator generates Result" has the same form as "Father begets Son." Then we can study the meanings of the words "beget" and "generate."

We can observe that the meaning and usage of both of these two words are very nearly synonymous. They each bear the meaning of a thing being produced from and having the same "type" as the thing from which it came. In the sense of biology lingo, a son inherits the genetic properties of his father. In the sense of numerology, the result inherits the same value as the numerator.

To the extent that the meanings of these words are identical, we may use them interchangeably. I am unable to find a significant difference between the two words, leading me to believe that the statements are identical.

How much of this process involves assumption? I do not feel as though I have had to "force" any assignment of theological meaning onto the numerical meaning of one or even to twist or manipulate the meaning of one at all. It is what it is and that is open for anyone to examine, which is the reason I ask for the opinions of others. If I have made any leaps in judgment, please let me know. I won't deny that I can be mistaken.
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10229 is a reply to message #10227 ] Tue, 05 November 2013 20:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wishing34  is currently offline wishing34
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hi Micheal,

Not a satisfying line of thought for me, but if it meets all the criteria that you
are looking for them maybe you have realized your quest, and it is one of those
things that people do because it matters to them even if no one else gets it.






Jman







---sig------------------------------------------------------ ------------

At the time of this post . . .

FA, the satellites, the spinoffs,and the FA diaspora have been having church
without apostles for 41 years and 309 days.
Initial start date 1/1/72


Recommended: No faith stands that strongly impact our (our children's) lives until we figure out
why the signs and wonders are missing. Something is wrong.












Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10233 is a reply to message #10227 ] Wed, 06 November 2013 00:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 870
Registered: August 2008
Location: Indiana
Senior Member
Michael R.,

I know this is getting away from the topic again. But just wondering after reading your post, What do you do for a living?

Gary



[Updated on: Wed, 06 November 2013 00:24]

Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10268 is a reply to message #10229 ] Sat, 09 November 2013 20:40 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
Registered: October 2013
Junior Member
Jman,

I suppose maybe you're right. Thank for all the input. I guess it's just something that will remain in the back of my mind whatever I do.
Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10269 is a reply to message #10233 ] Sat, 09 November 2013 21:07 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Michael R  is currently offline Michael R
Messages: 20
Registered: October 2013
Junior Member
Gary,

I currently work in the Air National Guard managing radio systems. I'm also studying toward a B.S. in Computer Science, and have recently completed a minor in Spanish.

One of my all-time favorite classes that I've taken though, and perhaps the one most relevant to my interest here, was a 100-level class in the philosophy department- Formal Deductive Logic. The professor struck me as being the classic, know-it-all, run-laps-around-you anti-God philosopher, but the topic resonates well with me because our God is the Logos, from whom all uncorrupted reasoning (logic) originates.

I'm also influenced a bit by my Einstein-like brother, who got a degree in Physics with a minor in Philosophy. It's an interesting combination, and he has given me quite a bit to think about in regard to the nature of the world we live in and how God might have set things up at the foundational level. He's regularly debating Atheists and Physicalists on Youtube from the perspective of his study of Quantum Physics.

[Updated on: Sat, 09 November 2013 21:08]

Re: Oneness Trinitarianism [message #10270 is a reply to message #10269 ] Sat, 09 November 2013 21:38 Go to previous messageGo to previous message
Gary  is currently offline Gary
Messages: 870
Registered: August 2008
Location: Indiana
Senior Member

Michael R.,

That's great about your studies, I really want to learn Spanish, presently I have studied Russian for three + years, not fluent what is interesting when my wife and I went to Israel we ran into a Russian Rabbi my wife could understand him speaking to us, I could not grasp what he was saying but knew what to say back when she interpreted.

When I get the chance I am going to take some Spanish classes. Don't live close enough to a place now to take them. I love learning languages, we studied Hebrew for two years.

I seen a show a good a while back on quantum geometry it was fascinating. Every thing in life has a geometric pattern to it. God's design or handprint is on everything we see.

I was in the Marine Corps when I was younger, I got to see places in the world that I would of never seen if not for being in the service. I have a lot of good memories of that time.

Presently I work as a Finish Carpenter. I have been in my own business for over thirty years now and God has always taken care of me. I could of not done it without Him. Its enjoyable and satisfying work.

My wife and I have been listening to gospel music late tonight. We like the tapes that come from the Dove Awards, very anointed music, plus we like Michael Card he's another good singer, very talented.

Thanks for sharing here brother appreciate it.

Gary





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