A Unitarian who denies the Trinity, part 2

by Matt Slick

(continued from A Unitarian who denies the Trinity, part 1)

Matt: The phrase in Greek in the Septuagint is "Call upon the name of the Lord." Right?
Amigo: Correct
Matt: Please hold for a second.
Amigo: Its Php 2:11 you are looking for Matt.
Matt: "Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours," (1 Cor. 1:2).
Amigo: And Acts 2. Yes.
Matt: Note: In the Greek, it is literally, "call upon the name of the Lord Of Us, Jesus Christ." This is why the English says, "call upon the name of Our Lord." Therefore, the phrase is the same.
Amigo: Yes
Matt: The exact same phrase used only of God in the Septuagint, which means warship, adoration, prayer, etc., is also applied to Jesus by the apostle Paul.
Amigo: Yes.
Matt: Why is the phrase, "call upon the name of the Lord," (Hebrew, Yhwh, i.e., Psalm 116:4) used only of God on the OT and translated into the Greek in the LXX as "call upon the name of the Lord" (Greek, Kurios) applied to Jesus in the NT (1 Cor. 1:2) if Jesus is not God in flesh?
Amigo: Because YHVH made Jesus Lord by glorifying Jesus with his own essence. That's also what Heb 1:8 is about. See also Acts 2:36.
Matt: Let me see if I understand you properly. Are you telling me that Jesus became a God?
Amigo: No.
Amigo: Jesus did not become another person.
Matt: What do you mean by "Yahweh made Jesus Lord of by glorifying Jesus with his own essence"?
Amigo: The risen Jesus shares the Father's divine nature.
Matt: God's divine nature belongs to God alone.
Amigo: That would be Holy Spirit to be specific.
Matt: That is the nature of God's divinity to be what He is. The first law of logic is the law of identity. Something is what it is.
Amigo: Your own insistences do not make things so Matt.
Matt: God is divine by nature. That is what He is.
Amigo: Nature is one thing, identity another . . . . you should know this.
Matt: How does God share His divine nature with a created thing? Does He make the created thing divine?
Amigo: Eve shared Adam's nature . . . . didn't make her Adam did it?
Matt: Both were of human nature. Does God extend His divine nature into the essence of the created thing and change its nature?
Amigo: Please clarify your question
Matt: Both were by nature human. How is it that you can claim that Jesus is not God in flesh but shares the divine nature of God the Father?
Amigo: And both the risen Jesus and the Father are by nature divine
Matt: So both Jesus and the Father share the same divine nature?
Amigo: Because sharing nature is not sharing identity Matt. Ask Eve.
Matt: I'm not talking about identity. I'm talking about nature. Adam and Eve shared the same nature. They were both human in nature.
Amigo: And it didn't mean Eve was Adam does it?
Matt: Of course not, Amigo. If you say that Jesus is a man right now and if you say that He is divine in nature, then how is He not God and Man at the same time?
Matt: Can you please answer my question?
Amigo: Let me illustrate something right here Matt. You use the term "god" in two ways and commit the fallacy of equivocation . . . . look up at your statement . . . . there "god" is not an identity but a nature.
Matt: If you say that Jesus is a man right now and--as you say--that He has a divine in nature, then how is He not God and Man at the same time?
Amigo: The risen Jesus is divine (same nature as the Father) and is also man . . . . he now has One nature.
Matt: Amigo, you'll notice that just a few lines earlier, I used the term, "divine nature."
Amigo: Divinized humanity.
Matt: Wait a minute. A human nature is not a divine nature. That would be two separate natures. By definition they are different.
Amigo: That would be a sort of Gnostic way to think Matt
Matt: I agree that you are thinking in a Gnostic manner. If Jesus is the possessor of a divine nature and a human nature, then He has two natures.
Amigo: Jesus is a New kind of humanity . . . . divinized flesh.
Matt: I see . . . . so Jesus is now a new third thing?
Amigo: The Gnostics couldn't handle that . . . . seems neither can you.
Matt: Jesus is kind of a human-man/divinized being? You are being illogical. You're violating the law of identity and the law of non-contradiction.
Amigo: No, the Man Jesus was divinized in his resurrection . . . . glorified in the Spirit of God
Matt: A divine nature is not the same as a human nature. They are by definition different. You cannot have one nature become the other nature.
Amigo: That was true at one time Matt . . . . not anymore.
Matt: That would be a change in natures. "Your saying it so doesn't make it so."
Amigo: Jesus human nature was divinized by God . . . . . have a problem with that?
Matt: You have violated the first and second laws of logic, of law of identity and the law of non-contradiction.
Amigo: That's why he is "life-giving Spirit".
Matt: You said that Jesus was a man.
Amigo: His physical body is swallowed up by Spirit, death swallowed up in victory. He was and is.
Matt: That means He has a human nature. So let me ask you. Does Jesus have a human nature right now?
Amigo: He does, a new kind of human nature, a divinized one. The same one he had before made immortal. The Spirit is life.
Matt: I ask again. Does Jesus have a human nature right now?
Amigo: Yes, a divinized one. Same body, glorified.
Matt: What exactly is a divinized human nature?
Amigo: Even your champion of the Trinity Athanasius believed this. Do you not know this?
Matt: What exactly is a divinized human nature?
Amigo: He went even further . . . . "God became man so men might become gods".
Matt: What exactly is a divinized human nature?
Amigo: That's your Trinity champion speaking there.
Matt: What exactly is a divinized human nature?
Amigo: A divinized human nature is a resurrected body . . . . a body glorified in Spirit. Read your Bible.
Matt: I see. So you are now inventing definitions.
Amigo: All the early church knew this Matt. Including Athanasius.
Matt: A resurrected body is still a material body.
Amigo: Of course it is. Gnostics can't comprehend this.
Matt: First Corinthians 15 tells us that the body that is sown is also the body that is raised.
Amigo: Yes it is
Matt: It is a glorified body. It is not made divine since divinity is the quality of God's nature.
Amigo: Same body, glorified, divinized.
Matt: What you have done is redefined what it means to be glorified in bodily form and then attached the vague term, "divinized," to it.
Amigo: No I haven't. God is Spirit . . . . and it is raised life-giving Spirit
Matt: Your position is not founded in Scripture nor logic.
Amigo: Ok You explain what a spiritual body is Matt . . . . and also what "life-giving Sprit" means
Matt: You have violated, as I said before, the law of logic known as the law of identity and also the second law, the law of non-contradiction.
Matt: A spiritual body is a body that has been resurrected and is no longer subject to pain, suffering, and death.
Amigo: No violation here Matt . . . . just God's supernatural power. Why is it "spiritual" Matt?
Matt: Jesus, the life-giving spirit, is described in that aspect of His perfected and glorified state as God in flesh, in which He is the author of our salvation and the one who gives life, eternal life.
Amigo: Let;'s see who invents. Lol
Matt: You're the one who's been inventing things.
Amigo: The text is about the resurrected body not a treatise on salvation.
Matt: So, do you pray to Jesus?
Amigo: Of course
Matt: Do you worship Jesus?
Amigo: He is my Lord and Savior
Amigo: Of course
Matt: Is Jesus a created thing?
Amigo: I've been down all these roads Matt
Matt: Is Jesus a created thing?
Amigo: No the Word is Not created. Begotten out of God at Genesis 1:3
Matt: I asked if Jesus is a created thing.
Amigo: Not a point in time but the place where time began. I told you No. Listen and pay attention please.
Matt: Are you telling me then that Jesus is eternal? . . . . that Jesus never had a beginning?
Amigo: The Word of God is eternal, the Son is not.
Matt: Is Jesus the Son of God?
Amigo: Just as I once was not a father. Yes.
Matt: So Jesus the Son of God was not eternal?
Amigo: There was no son in "eternity past" no, no father either, just God. Tertullian could help you on this one.
Matt: Again, so Jesus the Son of God was not eternal?
Amigo: The Word was eternal, the same Word that became flesh and dwelt among us
Matt: The Word was God, right?
Amigo: Wrong
Amigo: The Word was God. The Word was Not God? Divine No. My words are not me either. They are an expression of me.
Matt: The Bible says that the Word was God, John 1:1. 
Amigo: Wrong again
Matt: I guess you don't believe the Bible.
Amigo: Oh I believe it . . . . how you love to misrepresent people eh?
Amigo: I can say the same about you Matt.
Matt: Well, the Bible says, "In the beginning was the word and the Word was with God and the word was God."
Amigo: No it doesn't . . . . your mistranslation does
Matt: That's what it says--that the Word was God. I believe that.
Amigo: You believe what tickles your ears
Matt: Let me translate it for you literally.
Amigo: Sure you go ahead Matt. And I will illustrate your error for you.
Matt: "In beginning was the word and the word was with/toward the God and God was the word." That is the literal translation.
Amigo: That's not literal Matt.
Matt: Yes it is.
Amigo: Nope. Even Trinitarian scholars confess there is no definite article for a reason. The leading ones in fact.
Matt: On the contrary. I just performed a translation from the Greek into the English literally.
Amigo: If that's what you want Matt . . . . but stamping your feet won't make it so.
Matt: Let me do it again: "In the beginning was the word and the word was with/toward the God and God was the word." It is you who were stamping your feet. I'm just telling you what the literal Greek is. John 1:1 is very very easy Greek. This is not difficult to translate.
Amigo: Leading Trinitarian scholars admit that the second instance of theos is Not a reference to identity but to nature . . . . do you realize that Matt? It is not tell you Who the word was but What the word was
Matt: All I was doing was telling you what the literal translation was. Do you have a problem with that? Why do you have a problem with that?
Amigo: Well jump up and down and stamp your feet then. Your first clue.
Matt: You want me to put on my web cam, so you can see that I'm not jumping up and down and stamping my feet?
Amigo: There was no such thing as capitalization conventions in John's day. None
Matt: Okay, how about this then. "In the beginning was the word and the word was with/toward the god and god was the word."
Amigo: In the beginning was the word and the word was with the god and god was the word
Matt: Is that good enough?
Amigo: Yes that would be fine.
Matt: I see so then contrary to what you said earlier, my translation is correct since you agree with it.
Amigo: Your translation was wrong.
Matt: You are stumbling over yourself now.
Amigo: Obviously the term sentences "It is Sandy" and "it is sandy" mean two different things don't they Matt? You try to change the meaning of the text by adding a capitalization convention that John did not use. John intend, "and the word was god (divine)" Trinitarian scholars agree.
Matt: My inclusion of the capitalization was nothing more than a habit when referring to God. My apologies for capitalizing the word, "god." 
Amigo: It misleads people into thinking you are identifying the word as God . . . . something Trinitarian scholars admit John did not intend to do. He was not telling us Who the word was but What. The proper way to write such a thing would be "and the word was god". That is, divine. In the same sense the Father was divine.
Matt: Well, I suppose we could do a scholar's war and say that my scholar can beat up your scholar. I've spoken with many cultists who have referred to vague references of the majority of scholars who agree with them. The funny thing is that when they often quote the Trinitarian scholars about John 1:1, they forget that the scholars are indeed Trinitarian.
Matt: So anyway, I was right about the translation of John 1:1. 
Amigo: Just about All your scholars confess this Matt.
Matt: Even though you said that I was wrong, you admitted that was right. That is a good step. 
Amigo: I admitted nothing Matt. Please don't be childish.
Matt: If you notice, I have not made a statement at all about the nature of the word, "logos" or "god" in the sentence . . . . yet . . . . I was only trying to get through to what the translation was. It is you who kept inserting all sorts of accusations.
Amigo: John is telling us that the Word that became flesh was with God in the beginning and in the beginning that Word was divine
Matt: Was Jesus the Word?
Amigo: No that Word became Jesus. Jesus is a word for a human being born in Nazareth
Matt: Is the Word, divine?
Amigo: Yes. In the beginning. And now.
Matt: Is the Word God? 
Amigo: No. Being human doesn't make you Adam either. Same thing.
Matt: So the Greek "and the word was god" does not mean that the Word was God??? right?
Amigo: Right
Matt: I see . . .  
Amigo: The English word "god" means "the Creator". John was not telling you Jesus was another identity. The English word "god" is a reference to a Who. The English word god is a qualitative reference to a What. The English term "a god" is something else again. Jw's. Wrong
Matt: So then, Jesus is a created thing who became a God?
Amigo: Here is another thing . . . . Trinitarian scholars confess this so they don't get caught in Modalism. Jesus' body was a created thing. The Word that became that created thing was eternal by identity.
Matt: So Jesus has two natures: Divine and human?
Amigo: No. Never had or has two natures. Never.
Matt: How many natures does Jesus have?
Amigo: One and always and only One.
Matt: A divine nature and a human nature are different natures.
Amigo: The new Adam, the new kind of humanity, an immortal kind.
Matt: A divine nature is not a human nature, and a human nature is not a divine nature. By definition, they are different.
Amigo: Yes they are Matt, a divine humanity is another one again.
Matt: This is where you violate logic again.
Amigo: No violation here.
Matt: Sorry, But you are violating the basic laws of logic. A human nature is not a divine nature. If you say that Jesus only has one nature, then it must either be divine or human. A human nature is not a divine nature. If you say that Jesus only has one nature, then it must either be divine or human.
Amigo: Wrong again Matt
Matt: There is no third option unless you want to step in to the ancient error of monophysitism.
Amigo: Ever heard the word "new creation" or "new humanity"
Matt: You are very confused. That is obvious.
Amigo: What is the new humanity Matt? Verses "the old man".
Matt: You have invented a third "thing"--a new "divine/human" kind of nature.
Amigo: I invented nothing. God did this.
Matt: And this is the heir of the monophysitists
Amigo: Its all there in your bible plain to see. Monophysitism is an entirely different thing
Matt: The correct teaching is that Jesus has two natures. He is both divine and human.
Matt: Jesus exemplifies attributes of divinity as well as humanity.
Amigo: Incorrect Matt
Matt: Jesus knows all things and is everywhere all the time.
Matt: Jesus also walks and talks and has a body of flesh and bones.
Amigo: Didn't know the day or hour did he Matt?
Matt: We can discover the attributes of each nature by observing what is recorded in the Gospels.
Amigo: Yes he does have a body of flesh and bone
Amigo: Then and now
Matt: Since we observe that Jesus as attributes both of the divine and human natures, we conclude that Jesus has two natures. This is perfectly logical.
Amigo: Lol. Oh my.
Matt: Your position, however, is illogical because it violates the law of identity.
Amigo: Doesn't violate anything Matt.
Matt: It states Jesus as a new third kind of thing, a divine human nature.
Amigo: Matt is one person, Amigo another and God is another.
Matt: But this is equivalent to saying that a square circle exists.
Amigo: Why Matt?
Matt: A square is not a circle by definition, and a circle is not a square by definition. 
Matt: By definition, they exclude each other descriptively.
Amigo: Why can God not divinize humanity?
Matt: You can have a square and a circle but not a square circle
Amigo: That is what glorification means Matt.
Matt: Likewise, you can have a human and divine nature but not a human/divine nature.
Amigo: Well if you think your own insistences will make it so what can one do?
Matt: What you have done is denied the Word of God, denied Jesus Christ, violated the laws of logic, invented the illogical presuppositions (in contradiction with the Scriptures), and even redefined terms to suit your preconceived ideas.
Amigo: I can demand you are a pumpkin too . . . . won't make it so.
Matt: Please feel free to make all the demands that you want.
Amigo: I have denied nothing Matt . . . . as usual you misrepresent people for the sake of grandstanding.
Matt: Furthermore, I have not attacked your character or committed the ad hominem attack as you have just done.
Amigo: So then you also must insist Athanasius was wrong too right Matt?
Matt: A motive is not grandstanding. My motive is to bring glory to Jesus Christ.
Amigo: Ad hominems? Get serious Matt . . . . look in the mirror
Matt: Amigo, it is difficult, as I said earlier, to continue in a conversation with someone who violates the laws of logic repeatedly.
Amigo: Well you don't seem to have much.
Matt: The effect of sin is also upon the mind.
Amigo: Just your own self reaffirmations.
Amigo: Pick another favorite verse so I can illustrate your error on that one too. I have the truth and that's why I reject the doctrine of the Trinity . . . . it has so many errors I can hardly believe I ever believed it myself
Matt: 1 John 2:19, "They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, in order that it might be shown that they all are not of us."
Amigo: So you can embrace your creedal god right? Here we go . . . . the mutual admiration self reaffirmation society rides again.

[At this point, I basically gave up since it was getting nowhere. Others began to comment, and then Amigo began to address my motives to which I replied]. 

Amigo: Seeking approval among one another. Approval among men rather than God.
Matt: Amigo, perhaps you might want to refrain from imposing your opinions about our motives
Your motives are plain Matt. Your words betray you.
Matt: Amigo, what are my motives?
If anyone would listen you would find out your error on that one
Matt: Amigo, could you please tell me what my motives are?
Your only motive is to paint and color.
Matt: Paint and color? Painting and coloring our actions, not motives.
Paint and color others they way you like
Matt: Amigo, could you please tell me what my motives are?
Just did.
Matt: So my motives are to paint and to color? Amigo, could you please be more specific when explaining what my motives are? I'm really curious to know.
It is all over your website, Matt. You wish to color and paint others they way you like in order to advance you own pleasures.
Matt: What "pleasures" are those?
Its all over this conversation as well. To serve your creedal god. I rest my case. My motives are to show other people the serious problem with the Trinity . . . . truth is more important to me than serving a creed. Many people adopt a creedal belief that "sounds good" to them and then they put their own stamp "truth" upon it and then lives as if it is so. Truth is not like this . . . . it must be found, not made. The Trinity has many, many, many, many errors. I would think people would like to know about this kind of thing . . . . but some do not . . . . it does not please their itching ears
Matt: Amigo, I was waiting for you to explain to me what my motives were, you know, coloring and painting. Could you please to be more specific?
Oh my you just never quit do you Matt
Matt: Yes I do. I have to do something on CARM. I just wanted this last little bit of information.
Yeah you want a reason to remove me from the equation . . . . here's some information about that Matt . . . . I don't care.
Matt: Amigo, I was waiting for you to explain to me what my motives were, you know, coloring and painting. Could you please to be more specific?
I already have been specific
Amigo: I can play this game too . . . . please sign into chat Matt.
Matt: Amigo, please excuse me, but I missed it where you were specific. Could you be so kind as to repeat to me what my motives are in plain language?
Amigo: You are not here. I said your only motive is to paint and color other people (who don't agree with you) to suit your own itching ears.
Matt: Amigo, I'd just having difficulty understanding what that means. Could you be more specific?
Amigo: Same reason anyone does that. Is this all your idea of Apologetics?
Matt: Amigo, I guess I'll have to give up after this. But about my motives, could you please explain to me what my motives are again?
Amigo: You didn't understand the first three times?
Matt: No. I need it in more clear language.
Amigo: Your only motives are to paint and color others in order to advance your own creedal agenda despite the truth. I have said it several different ways now, perhaps you will understand this time
Matt: Again, I don't know what it means to paint and color other people . . . . unless I have a coloring book . . . . so I'm still confused. 
Amigo: Really? Well you can choose different colors when you paint can't you Matt?
Matt: Yes. 
Amigo: You choose whatever pleases you, not the color they are. Painting is an action, the reason for choosing the color is plainly stated. And I can hardly believe you people want to argue about such a ridiculous thing. Perhaps we could argue about the sinfulness of the font size in this box or something.
Matt: Well, thank you for the dialog, Amigo. I will put this up on CARM in the apologetics discussion section. It was most interesting.
Amigo: Sure thing Matt. Get out your scissors.
Matt: And I'm sure it will be interesting to others as well . . . . to see your illogic.

About The Author

Matt Slick is the President and Founder of the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry.