QA: Do the events at the Baptism of Messiah prove a ‘Trinity’?
The Trinity theory does proclaim
- that God is One
- that Messiah is God.
Yet, in essence, it denies these two main issues.
So, where does it go wrong?
In proclaiming that:
- Messiah is not also the Father, neither the Holy Spirit
- that the Holy Spirit is a Personage
- that there are 3 distinct different Persons in the Godhead who are co-equal and co-eternal.
Confusing, certainly! But your quoted problematic event of the Baptism provides the answer:
- If the Holy Spirit is a ‘Person,’ co-equal with the Father and the Son, how come a dove appears?
- How can the Holy Spirit be a Dove?
- And if the Father appeared at the Baptism, the attending crowd would have shriveled up – as God warned Moses at His Appearance at Sinai to keep the people away from the mountain.
Let us look at the NT reference to this event:
Matthew 3:16 “And YAHU’SHUAH, when He was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the Heavens were opened unto Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, (Luke 3:22) … in a bodily shape like a dove upon Him.”
We have here a perfect example here of the ‘manifestability’ of God. God in essence is a Spirit Being (John 4:24) and as such has omnipresence. At the Baptism, that One Selfsame God was baptized in His Human form in the river, while He spoke from Heaven and appeared also as a manifested Dove. In order to understand His manifestability, imagine in addition, that God was also a bystander in the form of a human being – just as He appeared as ‘An Angel’ (not with wings, but a normal human Being!) in Genesis to Hagar, and as three men unto Abraham, etc. (Refer to the 4 lesson Bible Course for several such recorded manifestations).
You may also test the spirit of Trinitarians in the following way: They admit that Messiah is God. Ask them how their spirit reacts to the thought that Messiah could be the One on the Throne? Many of them would object. Thus, they admit that He is God, but they do not like to see Him on the Throne! This makes 2 Gods, if indeed they recognize Him as God – one superior and one subservient to the other. This is unscriptural!
The Key to this complicated issue lies in His omnipresence and manifestability. While He is omnipresent in Spirit, He can manifest Himself in whatever form or forms He wishes. These manifestations are not ‘co-equal gods’, but are just that – the Manifestations of the One True God YHVH. In becoming Messiah, He went one step further and manifested Himself by way of a seed in the womb of Miriam the Hebrew woman, in order to become perfect human being, so that no-one in the Judgment could confront Him as being unfair, for not having experienced humanity with all its temptations and failings Himself!
So yes, the Trinity teaching proclaims, from one side of the mouth, the truth, but from the other side of the mouth the greatest blasphemy and insult against God and His Messianic Manifestation.
Trusting that this clarifies the issue for you somewhat. The ultimate understanding is based on a Revelation which only He can give – and He is willing to give it to all who sincerely wish to obtain it and honour Him accordingly:
Matt 11:27 “No one knows the Son except the Father … and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.”
Recommended additional reading:
Several studies on the Oneness concept as proclaimed in Scripture