Jesus did not teach the Trinity

Jesus did not teach the Trinity

by Ibn Anwar

Essential to the doctrine of the Trinity is the divine sonship of Jesus as the Second Person of the Triune Godhead. What is indefatigably clear is that Jesus never once taught anyone that he was God or that he was deserving of divine worship and adulation This in itself is a powerful confirmation that the Trinity was not part of the message and teachings of Jesus, for if he believed in the Trinity and desired that others believed in it, he would have had to clearly identify himself as the Second Person of the Trinity which he evidently never did. Highly celebrated Trinitarian scholar and theologian Professor Larry Hurtado says, in no uncertain terms, in a discussion with the Unitarian scholar Professor Anthony Buzzard that Jesus did not think he was the Second Person of the Trinity nor did he claim to be God:

” Jesus did not claim that he was God and did not imagine himself to be a second person of the Trinity and did not insist that he should be worshipped.” [1]

 

The late Archbishop of Canterbury, religious head of the worldwide Trinitarian Anglican communion, Dr. Michael Ramsey writes:

“Jesus did not claim deity for himself. He proclaimed the sovereignty of God, a sovereignty realized in and through his own mission;” [2]

The very fact that Jesus never thought of himself as God or as the Second Person of the Triune Godhead, as Hurtado emphatically says, must mean that he never preached the Trinity. The Trinity says that there is One God that is a Being in whom there are three equal and eternal Persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Such language, terminology and formulation is completely foreign to the recorded speech of Jesus. Jesus did not know or teach any such doctrine. He did not claim to be God and he did not imagine himself to be the Second Person of the Godhead, therefore, he did not teach the Trinity.

Notes:

[1] [Restoration Fellowship] (2016, October 29). Anthony Buzzard hosts Dr. Larry Hurtado: God, Jesus & the Trinity. [Video File]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2IJ9Mz7Lnkc

[2] Ramsey, M. (1980). Jesus and the Living Past: The Hale Lectures 1978. Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 39

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