Trinitarian Fouls to the Bible Text
Appendix K: Trinitarians’ Fouls
[From Standford Rives, Did Calvin Murder Servetus? (2010) at 535.]
I have not opined on the trinity doctrine during this book. I have no agenda to attack the trinity doctrine. However, I could not help but notice various fouls in the debate by trinitarians which have tainted the discussion. Thus, if there is ever to be a fair discussion of this issue, these fouls must be acknowledged, removed from the playing field, and then the debate can proceed.
The true words of Scripture “Spirit, water and blood agree” were deleted from 1 John 5 and falsely replaced in the 1500’s by “the Father, Word and Spirit agree, and these three are one.” This alteration made it into the King James Bible for reasons explained earlier, but it is a false alteration.
The true words of Holy Scripture “Thou art my Son. This day I have begotten thee” were spoken by God-the-Father from heaven at Jesus’ baptism. These were deleted after the 300’s and replaced by “This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased.” This is attested to by several passages in the epistles in the New Testament as well as numerous early church ‘fathers’ writing 96-325 A.D.
The early church had no creed that made mention of a “trinity.” To cure this defect, the French king in the 800’s first popularized a creed that mentioned the word “trinity” but then to give it an air of a much earlier existence, his court named it the Athanasian Creed. Athanasius lived in the 300’s. However, this was a pious fraud on the public mind. As Gibbon noted in anticipation of Swainson and Ffoulke, “St. Athanasius is not the author of the creed which we so frequently read in our churches” and “it does not appear to have existed within a century of his death.” (Gibbon, Rise and Fall, etc. (1843) at 402 fn. 113.) As Schaff states in the American Presbyterian Review Vol 4 (Jan-Oct. 1866) at 592, the name Athanasius is a “designation which cannot be traced beyond the eighth century” and “Athanasius was [not] really the author.” The Roman Catholic Church, however, began using for the first time the Athanasian Creed in only the 11th Century. See page 208.
Once we clear away these pious frauds, the question whether God intends us to call Him a trinity or One Lord can be fairly discussed.
Additional Trinitarian Fouls (Contributer Doug)
Misleading Translation of Kyrios Whenever Undermines Trinitarian Argument
Whenever Yahweh appears in the Original Testament, all modern translations replace this with the word LORD. The only exceptions are literal Bibles or "Names" Bibles. Why do so many replace Yahweh with Lord?
This switch is based upon the Ineffable Name Doctrine that Christians adopted in the 300s from the Jewish Scribes. It is wrongheaded. Regardless, then the word used to translate LORD by Jewish scribes into Greek in 257 BC in the Septuagint Bible was Kyrios. Thus, when Yahweh was replaced by Lord, and translated into Greek, the word was Kyrios.
When Jesus is addressed, even by non-believers, he is often addressed as Lord -- Kyrios. Trinitarians cite this as proof that Jesus is God. Thus, people supposedly knew this who greeted Jesus this way.
However, initially what it proves is that the word LORD like the word SIR in our modern parlance was a greeting of respect. See Matthew 21:30 NIV (son addressing father as Kyrios is translated "I will go SIR."); see John 12:21 NIV (Philip addressed as Kyrios by Greeks, translated "SIR" by NIV; John 20:15 NIV (Mary Magdeline thinking Jesus was gardner addresses him as Kyrios, translated as SIR); Rev. 7:14 NIV (John addresses elder as Kyrios, and translated as "SIR"); Matt 27:62 NIV (religious leaders address Pilate as Kyrios, translated as "SIR" by NIV).
One of the reasons you would not realize this is because the Bible is repeatedly and systematically mistranslated. The impact is you would not realize Jesus and others called persons Lord by the Greek word Kyrios who were not God or Jesus. Hence, had the proper translation appeared, you would be able to recognize the flaw in the Trinitarian argument that Jesus is God because he is called Lord. This is a false claim.
Here is an example from the NIV:
8 “When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.’ (Matthew 20:8 NIV.)
Where's the word LORD there you may ask? Kyrios is translated as "owner," not "Lord." (Contrast the KJV has it "Lord".)
The same is done again by the NIV in Matthew 21:40, Mark 12:9, Mark 13:35, Luke 20:13, Galatians 4:1 where "owner" was "Kyrios" and should be rendered as Lord.
Kyrios is clearly used among a broad spectrum of non-Deity persons, and each time simply means LORD -- a term of respect. Think Downton Abbey where in the 1800s, British aristocracy was addressed as "my Lord."
But it also necessary because Jesus' parables referred to human "lords" as an analogy to himself or to God as Lord of a bigger house than the proverbial houses at issue. The NIV undercuts the reader seeing Jesus' analogy between himself or God, and these human lords.
Moreover, while sadly obscuring Jesus' meaning unnecessarily -- especially when the KJV always had it correctly as LORD, the NIV's change from the KJV had the impact of feeding the trinitarian argument that LORD in the NT always meant Deity, and hence Jesus being called LORD supposedly meant everyone recognized Jesus as God.
The NIV does this again in Matthew 10:24, and is not only harmful to Jesus' meaning, but also helps this old and common trinitarian argument. So Jesus is translated as saying in the NIV:
The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master. (Matt 10:24 NIV.)
Where is KYRIOS in that sentence? The word Master.
Jesus was saying that just as a servant is not above his LORD -- a human lord obviously, thus 'you apostles as my servants are not above ME -- your LORD -- your superior.' Thus, to preserve Jesus' analogy it should have been LORD in verse 24. However, this change helps the trinitarIan argument that LORD (Kyrios) when used about Jesus necessarily means DEITY. What else can explain the translation of KYRIOS is shifted from LORD to other words, e.g., master, owner, etc., when Jesus' analogy is thereby needlessly obscured and thus harder to understand?
Where else does the NIV do this? In Matthew 18:25, 31, 32, 35; Matthew 24:35, 45; Luke 12:43; Ephesians 6:9, and Colossians 4:1, where in every case the NIV rendered KYRIOS -- Lord -- as master, not Lord.
Most suprisingly, when KYRIOS is used to refer to the Roman Emperor, the NIV renders it as "His Majesty." Wow! What a leap! Festus complains "I have nothing definite to write to His Majesty [KYRIOS] about him..." Acts 25:26 NIV. Cfr. King James ("my Lord.")
As explained at Biblican Unitarian, these systematic revisions obscuring LORD (KYRIOS) applies to humans too "cause us to be confused when we see Jesus called Lord and God called Lord, then we think 'well they must be the same.'" (If Jesus is Called Lord, does that make him God? You Tube at 7:42.)
Incidentally, only one time does the NIV break from its persistent use of substitutes for LORD by either SIR, MASTER or OWNER or HIS MAJESTY, even though the person addressed is not God. This is in Acts 10:4 when Cornelius addresses the angel as "LORD" when to be consistent within the NIV's new approach, this should have been SIR -- an address of respect to a stranger. Thus, it is possible a reader of the NIV may learn from that single example that LORD does not always mean DEITY, but the NIV may have anticipated that an "angel" may be viewed as a divine being to most readers. The reader still would not thus be likely aware the Trinitarian argument that "LORD means Jesus is called GOD throughtout the NT" is refuted by this single example. But indeed, this is the only verse you can use from the NIV as written to disprove the trinitarian argument.
This is how trinitarians views have come to predominate. It does not speak well of an argument when it depends upon such mastery over translations to blind us to error in trinitarian arguments.
As Biblican Unitarian points out, if you were a Christian slave in those days, you would have many KYRIOS -- Lords -- over you. Your father would be called KYRIOS in the house. The slave owner would be called KYRIOS. The Roman Emperor would be called KYRIOS. Jesus would be called KYRIOS. (You Tube If Jesus is Called Lord... at 10:15-34.)
Thus, had the Bible been consistently translated to make this clear, no Trinitarian could seriously advance the idea that LORD is exclusively a title that belongs to God, and thus when Jesus is repeatedly called LORD, this supposedly means Jesus was repeatedly being called God.