Trinity truth

Introduction

The Trinity doctrine teaches three co-equal, co-eternal gods that are not three gods but one god. But this proposes many problems. The first being that Scripture says many times that there is only one true God.

The second being that if the Father and Son are co-eternal and hence have supposedly always existed, how can Jesus be the Son of God and how can God be His Father? And if Jesus is God, then how could He have died on the cross since Scripture says God cannot die.

John 20:17 says, “I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” How can Jesus be God and have a God at the same time?

The Trinity doctrine is manmade from Satan via the Catholic Church, which did not exist until over 200 years after the Bible was written. Many Scriptures are abused to try and claim Jesus is the one true God rather than being God by nature being His Son. 1 Timothy 3:16 is one of them.

Does 1 Timothy 3:16 say Jesus is God?

Trinitarians sometimes claim 1 Timothy 3:16 identifies Jesus as “God” because the KJV translation says “God was manifested in the flesh.” However, modern Bible translations do not read “God” in this verse. Trinitarians make this claim by quoting from the King James Version, despite the fact that Bible scholars agree that the KJV reading is a certain corruption. Despite this, Trinitarians continue to cherry-pick this verse from the KJV.

Below is the SDA Bible Commentary based on the incorrect KJV translation of the word “God.” The correct translation is “he or who,” not “God.” And that “he” is Jesus Christ.

God: Textual evidence favors the reading “he who.” The reference is clearly to Jesus, in and through whom the divine secret has been revealed.” — (Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary)

Here is this verse from the KJV.

1 Timothy 3:16 KJVAnd without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.

And here it is from the NIV.

1 Timothy 3:16 NIVBeyond all question, the mystery of godliness is great: He appeared in a body, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory.

If the word “God” was correct, observe how the rest of the verse would read, which is clearly incorrect.

1 Timothy 3:16 KJVAnd without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, [God was] justified in the Spirit, [God was] seen of angels, [God was] preached unto the Gentiles, [God was] believed on in the world, [God was] received up into glory.

Was God received up into glory? No! Jesus Christ was received up into glory. Trinitarians are going to have a hard time making all that fit. Now if the correct translation of “He” is used referring to Christ, we have no problem as we see below.

1 Timothy 3:16And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: [He] was manifest in the flesh, [He was] justified in the Spirit, [He was] seen of angels, [He was] preached unto the Gentiles, [He was] believed on in the world, [He was] received up into glory.

Note the “New International Reader's Version” for example.

1 Timothy 3:16 NIRVThere is no doubt that godliness is a great mystery. Jesus appeared in a body. The Holy Spirit proved that he was the Son of God. He was seen by angels. He was preached among the nations. People in the world believed in him. He was taken up to heaven in glory.

The following Bible Commentary from Albert Barnes explains how this error happened. You will notice that he is reluctant to state the obvious as he was in fact a Trinitarian.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Bible, (1798-1870)
God - Probably there is no passage in the New Testament which has excited so much discussion among critics as this, and none in reference to which it is so difficult to determine the true reading. It is the only one, it is believed, in which the microscope has been employed to determine the lines of the letters used in a manuscript; and, after all that has been done to ascertain the exact truth in regard to it, still the question remains undecided. It is not the object of these notes to enter into the examination of questions of this nature. A full investigation may be found in Wetstein. The question which has excited so much controversy is, whether the original Greek word was Θεὸς Theos, “God,” or whether it was ὅςhos, “who,” or ὁho, “which.” The controversy has turned, to a considerable degree, on the reading in the “Codex Alexandrinus;” and a remark or two on the method in which the manuscripts in the New Testament were written, will show the true nature of the controversy.
Greek manuscripts were formerly written entirely in capital letters, and without breaks or intervals between the words, and without accents; see a full description of the methods of writing the New Testament, in an article by Prof. Stuart in Dr. Robinson's Biblotheca Sacra, No. 2, pp. 254ff The small, cursive Greek letters which are now used, were not commonly employed in transcribing the New Testament, if at all, until the ninth or tenth centuries. It was a common thing to abridge or contract words in the manuscript. Thus, πρ would be used for πατερpater, “father;” κς for κυριοςkurios, “Lord;” Θς for Θεος Theos, “God,” etc. The words thus contracted were designated by a faint line or dash over them. In this place, therefore, if the original uncials (capitals) were Θ¯C¯, standing for Θεὸς Theos, “God,” and the line in the Θ, and the faint line over it, were obliterated from any cause, it would easily be mistaken for OC - ὅςhos - “who.”
To ascertain which of these is the true reading, has been the great question; and it is with reference to this that the microscope has been resorted to in the examination of the Alexandrian manuscript. It is now generally admitted that the faint line “over” the word has been added by some later hand, though not improbably by one who found that the line was nearly obliterated, and who meant merely to restore it. Whether the letter O was originally written with a line within it, making the reading “God,” it is now said to be impossible to determine, in consequence of the manuscript at this place having become so much worn by frequent examination. The Vulgate and the Syriac read it: “who,” or “which.” The Vulgate is, “Great is the sacrament of piety which was manifested in the flesh.” The Syriac, “Great is the mystery of godliness, that he was manifested in the flesh.

So it has been admitted by many that they believe this was a deliberate corruption to push the Trinity doctrine. Albert Barnes admits this and then tries to cover obscure this fact by giving an opinion in favour of what he would like to believe.

Thus we find that there are many theologians who actually have a good idea how this corruption happened. Scribal copyists regularly used a contracted form of the Greek word for “God” called a “nomina sacra” that was used very early in Christian history for sacred names. The Greek word for “God” is theos which is written as “Θεος.” The abbreviation took the form “Θς” with a faint overscore stroke above the abbreviation, which often become quite faint in the copies.

Now the Greek word for “who” is the word “hos” which is written in Greek as “Oς.” Notice the similarity between these two words “Θς” and “” and also remember they were hand written. With the exception of one pen stroke, the Omicron “O” and Theta “Θ” are nearly identical. So it would be very easy to make a mistake copying from one manuscript to another, which would be excusable if this is what happened.

But it would also be easy for an overzealous scribe to execute a forgery by changing the manuscript and the handwritten “O” (Omicron) into a “Θ” (Theta) with a single stroke of his pen which would completely change the meaning of the verse.

It would also be very easy to change the word “ho” to “theos” by adding a stroke and an “s.” But it would be a lot more difficult to do it the other way around without getting caught as you would have to remove the stroke.

There is also evidence that ink may have bled through the other side of the media and made it appear to a copyist to read “Θς” because the ink bleeding could make it appear to be a line where “” had been written. Whether or not it was an honest copying mistake or a forgery, it is very likely that the error was produced in this manner.

So below are the known facts:

1) Trinitarians are focused on a version of the text which is known to be a scribal error.

2) Modern Trinitarian translations and their translators admit this is a scribal error and do not translate this passage with the known error that seemed to support Trinity doctrine.

3) We know this error occurred by either (1) one additional stroke of a pen changing the Greek word from “who” to “God” or (2) by two additional strokes of a pen changing the Greek word from “which” to God, or (3) by the ink bleeding through the media used.

4) The KJV version of this verse is NOT found anywhere in early Christian writings before the Trinity doctrine was created.

5) No early manuscripts contain this version of the verse. The corrupted version of this text appears only after the Trinity doctrine was developed in the fourth and fifth century.

6) The Greek grammar also indicates this rendering is wrong.

Below I have provided 25 translations (and there are many more) where the translators new it was error and have the correct reading of the manuscript. Most say “He” and some even say “Jesus” and “Christ” outright.

1Timothy 3:16

(ASV)And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the spirit, Seen of angels, Preached among the nations, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.

(BBE)And without argument, great is the secret of religion: He who was seen in the flesh, who was given God's approval in the spirit, was seen by the angels, of whom the good news was given among the nations, in whom the world had faith, who was taken up in glory.

(CEV) “Here is the great mystery of our religion: Christ came as a human. The Spirit proved that he pleased God, and he was seen by angels. Christ was preached to the nations. People in this world put their faith in him, and he was taken up to glory.

(CJB)Great beyond all question is the formerly hidden truth underlying our faith: He was manifested physically and proved righteous spiritually, seen by angels and proclaimed among the nations, trusted throughout the world and raised up in glory to heaven.

(CENT)By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness: he was revealed in the flesh, was vindicated in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(ESV)Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(GNB) “No one can deny how great is the secret of our religion: He appeared in human form, was shown to be right by the Spirit, and was seen by angels. He was preached among the nations, was believed in throughout the world, and was taken up to heaven.

(HCSB)And most certainly, the mystery of godliness is great: He was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(LONT)And, confessedly, great is the secret of godliness; -he who has manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit; seen of messengers, proclaimed to the Gentiles, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(MSG) “This Christian life is a great mystery, far exceeding our understanding, but some things are clear enough: He appeared in a human body, was proved right by the invisible Spirit, was seen by angels. He was proclaimed among all kinds of peoples, believed in all over the world, taken up into heavenly glory.

(MRC)And as agreed by common consent great is the mystery of piety: He Who was manifested in the flesh, was justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(NASB)By common confession, great is the mystery of godliness: He who was revealed in the flesh, Was vindicated in the Spirit, Seen by angels, Proclaimed among the nations, Believed on in the world, Taken up in glory.

(NCV)Without doubt, the secret of our life of worship is great: He was shown to us in a human body, proved right in spirit, and seen by angels. He was preached to those who are not Jews, believed in by the world, and taken up in glory.

(NET)And we all agree, our religion contains amazing revelation: He was revealed in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among Gentiles, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(NIRV)There is no doubt that godliness is a great mystery. Jesus appeared in a body. The Holy Spirit proved that he was the Son of God. He was seen by angels. He was preached among the nations. People in the world believed in him. He was taken up to heaven in glory.

(NIV)Beyond all question, the mystery of godliness is great: He appeared in a body, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory.

(NLT)Without question, this is the great mystery of our faith: Christ appeared in the flesh and was shown to be righteous by the Spirit. He was seen by angels and was announced to the nations. He was believed on in the world and was taken up into heaven.

(NLV)It is important to know the secret of Godlike living, which is: Christ came to earth as a Man. He was pure in His Spirit. He was seen by angels. The nations heard about Him. Men everywhere put their trust in Him. He was taken up into heaven.

(NRSV)Without any doubt, the mystery of our religion is great: He was revealed in flesh, vindicated in spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among Gentiles, believed in throughout the world, taken up in glory.

(RSV)Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of our religion: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory.

(RV)And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, justified in the spirit, seen of angels, preached among the nations, believed on in the world, received up in glory.

(TCNT)Yes, and confessedly wonderful are the deep truths of our religion; for-- 'He was revealed in our nature, pronounced righteous in spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, taken up into glory.'

(UPDV)And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness; He who was manifested in the flesh, Justified in the spirit, Seen of angels, Preached among the nations, Believed on in the world, Received up in glory.

(WmsNT)Undoubtedly the mystery of our religion is a great wonder: "He was made visible in human form; He was vindicated by the Spirit; He was seen by angels; He was proclaimed among the heathen; He was trusted in throughout the world; He was taken up to glory.

(WNT)And, beyond controversy, great is the mystery of our religion-- that Christ appeared in human form, and His claims justified by the Spirit, was seen by angels and proclaimed among Gentile nations, was believed on in the world, and received up again into glory.

Some Trinitarians will stop at nothing to try and prove this soul stealing lie from Satan that was brought into Christendom by the Roman Catholic Church long after the Bible was written. 1 Timothy 3:16 is a perfect example of just how far they will go.