Trinity- true or false?
This was an e-mail sent to me from a Messianic Jewess in my congregation:
Hi Rabbi Stan,
This is concerning the Trinity. It is a topic I have wrestled with for years. If you have time I'd like to hear your comments on it. For whatever reason, I seem to have a problem focusing on who I am actually worshipping. This is how I believe at the moment. This isn't how I believed a year ago, and may not be what I believe a year from now: God the Father is our God..The one true God...the creator of the universe, the One who delivered the children of Israel from Egypt. At God's chosen time, by His Holy Spirit, Mary gave birth to the Son of God, Yeshua. Yeshua is our Messiah. Concerning the Holy Spirit...this is not another "person" as some translations seem to indicate...but an actual extension of God the Father (Yahweh) Himself...such as He breathed life into Adam.
Yeshua is indeed God and He is God Almighty. The best evidence we have is this (this is only one of many).
Gen 19:24 this Scripture doesn't look like much at first glance and still not much when looking at it in English. But here's what I'd like you to notice. Can you see how the word LORD is written in the verse? Have you ever noticed that Lord is spelled different ways at different times? Sometimes it's LORD and other times it's spelled Lord. Why the difference? Here's why. When English translators get to the Hebrew word Adoni they would translate it as Lord. Or if they got the Hebrew word for "master" or even "sir". But when they get to the word Yehova (Jehovah... there is no "j" sound in Hebrew) they always type the word in upper case. This is 100% of the time.
So keeping this in mind lets look at the verse again. Also remember that Yehova is God Almighty. So what does it say? It says this. And Yehova on earth called down fire and brimstone from Yehova out of heaven. Now how is this possible? There's only two options here. Option 1: there are 2 God Almighties.
Option 2: there is some kind of plurality.
Lets examine option one. Hopefully at the Mess Syn. you went to they opened the service with something called "The Shma" What it is is a Hebrew prayer. "Shma Yisrael Adoni Elohaynu Adoni Echad" it means... Hear oh Israel there is only One God. This is a Scripture! So from this we know there aren't 2 Gods. So there's only one option left. Let's look at that. A plurality.
From Gen 19:24 we see that God Almighty is on Earth and He is communicating to God Almighty in Heaven. There is such a distinction that there is a need to communicate from One to Another. Enough so that He "calls" to the other. They are in 2 separate places and talking to each other.
Ancient Rabbis at the time of Yeshua had already believed that the Messiah may be God incarnate because of this Scripture. But when a group arose which was called "The Way" and this group was claiming that a man named Yeshua was indeed that incarnation, the Rabbis started to distance themselves from this belief they had concerning this Scripture less people think that they were followers of this Yeshua themselves. If you talk to a Jew today, they would scoff at this idea and say it was never Jewish thought. But they are incorrect.
Yeshua emphasized His deity at His last Pasach (Passover). It's called the "Last Supper" why did He bring it up then? Because Pasach is the story of Moses and how he brought them out of Egypt. Do you remember how Moses got the call to do this? There was a burning bush and Moses asked this "who should I say has sent me?" the answer was tell them "I Am" has sent you. Yeshua was once asked who He was. And do you know what He said? He said I am THAT I am! He was saying that it was He who talked to Moses. Some of the Jews there wanted to kill Him. They knew what He was saying. He was saying He was God Almighty and they found that blasphemous and worthy of death!
Now where people get confused is the fact that Yeshua had became a man. So here they say He wasn't God. What they don't understand is that He laid down only SOME of his aspects of deity. It only makes sense that He did. He couldn't be omnipresent and be a man. He couldn't be omniscient either very well could he? His brain would've melted, a human brain is only so big! But by laying down aspects doesn't by any means make Him exempt from being who He was. He was, is and will always be God. Halleluiah! (Highest praises to God is what Halleluiah means)
I hope this helps clear it up for you
Here's another point to show that there is a distinction. The Holy Spirit isn't just an extension. If that were so then it wouldn't be any different blaspheming Him then blaspheming the Father or the Son. But there is a difference. A big difference. The Scriptures give us the biggest warning of all time. It says you can blaspheme the Father and you can blaspheme the Son but if you blaspheme the Holy Spirit... you shall NEVER be forgiven. Wow, that's something else. The Holy Spirit is such a different part that if you blaspheme Him, you are eternally damned. Many Christians say, "God always forgives" or "God IS forgiveness" well obviously not. Here it says if you do this He will never forgive you. One day I'll explain why you can't blaspheme the Holy Spirit but that's another teaching :-)