Does Oneness theology (Modalism) teach a "sock puppet" view of God's nature?

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Is the "sock puppet" analogy of Oneness theology a fair representation?

  • Yes

    Votes: 6 42.9%
  • No

    Votes: 7 50.0%
  • I don't know

    Votes: 1 7.1%

  • Total voters
    14
May 29, 2018
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It has since been widely accepted by modern scholars that the Athanasian Creed was not authored by Athanasius. The reasons for rejecting Athanasius as the author relies on a combination of the following.

1. The creed originally was mostly written in Latin, while Athanasius composed in Greek.
2. Neither Athanasius nor his contemporaries ever mention that Creed.
3. It is not mentioned in any records of the ecumenical councils.
4. It appears to address theological concerns that developed after Athanasius died(including the filioque).
 

Angela53510

Senior Member
Jan 24, 2011
10,992
2,133
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Thank You!

I am aware that the Language structures between English and Greek and most other Languages are structured differently. This is why I am leery about the English Translation to begin with. But I will definitely look into what you have offered to make things clearer. I have no issues with the Greek whatsoever. I have issue with the translation into English.
Sorry this took so long. I am finally home, got my old computer out and dug to find this which I wrote. These explains the subtleties you are missing with word for word interpretations - the syntax is vital here. I also will try and address your issues with the first part of the verse later. HOWEVER - John 1:1c really is sufficient to show Jesus is God, but not the Father! I hope it explains it, it is based on an article by Dr. William Mounce in his first year text, "The Basics of Biblical Greek."


In Greek, the nominative case is the case that the subject is in. Therefore, when the subject takes an equative verb like “is” then another noun also appears in the nominative case – the predicate nominative. In the sentence “John is a man.” “John” is a subject and “man” is the predicate nominative. In English, the subject and the predicate nominative are distinguished by word order. (The subject comes first!)

In English, the order of the sentence generally determines the use of the noun. The subject usually comes first.
Not so in Greek! Since word order in Greek is quite flexible and is used for emphasis rather than strict grammatical function, other means are used to distinguish the subject from the predicate nominative. For example, if one of the two nouns has the definite article (in English, “the” in Greek, “ό”), it is the subject.

To repeat, in Greek, the word order is flexible, and is used for emphasis rather than for strict grammatical functions. For example, if there are two nouns and one has the definite article, it is the subject.

Word order is also employed for the sake of emphasis. Generally, if a word is thrown to the front of a clause or sentence, it is done so for emphasis. When the predicate nominative is thrown in front of the verb, by virtue of word order it takes on emphasis.

A good illustration of this is John 1:1c. English versions usually say, “and the Word was God.” But in Greek, the word order is reversed.

Καί θεός ήν ό λόγος or (Kai theos en ho logos)
And God was the Word

We know that “the Word” is the subject, because it has the definite article and is in the nominative case and we translate it accordingly “and the Word was God.”

Two questions, both of theological importance, come to mind
1. Why was θεός (theos or God) thrown forward?
2. Why does it lack the article?

The emphatic position of θεός (theos) stresses its essence or quality.** “What God was, the Word was” is how one translation brings out this force. Its lack of a definite article keeps us from identifying the Person of the Word (Jesus Christ) with the Person of “God” (the Father).

That means that the word order tells us that Jesus Christ has all the divine attributes that the Father has: lack of the article tells us the Jesus Christ is not the Father.

John’s wording here is beautifully compact! It is in fact, one of the most elegantly terse theological statements one could ever find. As Martin Luther said, the lack of an article is against Sabellianism; the word order is against Arianism

To state this another way, let’s look at how the different Greek constructions would be rendered:

1. καί ό λόγος ήν ό θεός
“and the Word was the God” Sabellianism*

2. καί ό λόγος ήν θεός
“and the Word was a god” Arianism+

3. καί θεός ήν ό ΄λόγος
“and the Word was God” Orthodoxy and the correct translation.

*Mounce William D., Basics of Biblical Greek: Grammar
** See Wallace GGBB, pages 266-269



*Sabellianism, (also known as modalism, modalistic monarchianism, or modal monarchism) is the nontrinitarian belief that the Heavenly Father, Resurrected Son and Holy Spirit are different modes or aspectsof one monadic God, as perceived by the believer, rather than three distinct persons within the Godhead.
The term Sabellianism comes from Sabellius, a theologian and priest from the 3rd century. Modalism differs from Unitarianism by accepting the Christian doctrine that Jesus is fully God.

+ Arianism is the theological teaching attributed to Arius (ca. AD 250–336), a Christian presbyter in Alexandria, Egypt, concerning the relationship of God to the Son of God (Jesus of Nazareth). Arius asserted that the Son of God was a subordinate entity to God the Father.
Arianism is defined as those teachings attributed to Arius which are in opposition to mainstream TrinitarianChristological doctrine, as determined by the first two Ecumenical Councils and currently maintained by the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Churches, the Oriental Orthodox Churches, the Assyrian Church of the East, all Reformation-founded Protestant churches (Lutheran, Reformed/Presbyterian, and Anglican), and a large majority of groups founded after the Reformation and calling themselves Protestant (such as Methodist, Baptist, most Pentecostals), with the exception of such groups as Oneness Pentecostals, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Jehovah's Witnesses, Iglesia ni Cristo and Branhamism
 

Kolistus

Active member
Feb 3, 2020
221
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Adding/Taking away from God's word is a literal Blasphemous Act!

I showed you in John where Jesus calls Holy Spirit a "THAT," and in Mark where the One Person of God is called "HE!"

So even the Greek made a clarification.
He didnt add to God's word, he said: Parakletos (comforter, advocate) is used of the Holy Spirit, and in 1 John 2:1 "

in 1 John 2:1 the same word Parakletos is used for Jesus. do you believe Jesus is a person or not? Do you believe Jesus is God or not?
 
May 29, 2018
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Original
Ἐν ἀρχῇ ἦν ὁ λόγος, καὶ ὁ λόγος ἦν πρὸς τὸν θεόν, καὶ θεὸς ἦν ὁ λόγος.
Translation
At the beginning was the word, and the word was to God, and God was the word.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was to Spirit(God), and the Word was Spirit(God).
 
May 29, 2018
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By the way, if I understand your position correctly, you would in fact believe that the Son of God came into existence at the Incarnation. You deny that he was a distinct Person along with the Father before the creation, as John 1:1-3 clearly teaches. The word "with" in these verses indicates a face-to-face relationship.
So if it is a face to face relationship, did you really mean there were two spirit persons in face-to-face relation before Incarnation?

But I could spend all day pointing out issues and you would never listen so maybe you can explain to me why I should engage you.
You really need to continue engaging if you are in the truth, but if you already loss you feel stop engaging.
 
May 29, 2018
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Arianism is defined as those teachings attributed to Arius which are in opposition to mainstream TrinitarianChristological doctrine, as determined by the first two Ecumenical Councils and currently maintained by the Roman Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Churches, the Oriental Orthodox Churches, the Assyrian Church of the East, all Reformation-founded Protestant churches (Lutheran, Reformed/Presbyterian, and Anglican), and a large majority of groups founded after the Reformation and calling themselves Protestant (such as Methodist, Baptist, most Pentecostals), with the exception of such groups as Oneness Pentecostals, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Jehovah's Witnesses, Iglesia ni Cristo and Branhamism
During the time of Arius his contender was not the Trinitarians at all but the Modalist at at Counicil at Nicea in 325 AD. The Second Constaniple at 381 AD was the first introduced the Trinity doctrine when the Roman Catholic church started.