Who is God? That is a question that many people ask themselves. People want to understand God, they want to understand themselves and the world they live in and asking questions is how we learn. Among Christians there is some debate over the answer to that question. There is a debate between the doctrine of Trinity and the doctrine of Oneness. On this page we are going to take a closer look at both of those ideas and we will also examine the reasoning behind the ideas on both sides of the debate.
What Is the Doctrine of the Trinity?
The doctrine of the Trinity states that there is only one true God but that God can be defined as three divine persons; the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Each of these three are distinct entities and yet each of these entities is God; they are all one.
What Is the Doctrine of Oneness?
Many Pentecostal Christians believe in what is referred to as the oneness theology. This theory states that God is a singular spirit, but that the spirit is manifested in different ways; ways including the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. When believers of the oneness theology are baptized, they are baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. When believers of the Trinity doctrine are baptized, they are baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit.
Similarities and Differences of These Theologies
Both sides agree that there is but one God and that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are each God. The disagreement is about the idea that the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct persons. When people on both sides of the issue have a debate, they will both point to many different Bible verses that support their ideas. Each side can make a compelling argument and we will take a look at some of the Bible verses that are commonly debated and the reasons why each side believes a particular verse supports their ideas.
Arguments for the Doctrine of Oneness
Many people that support the doctrine of oneness point to Deuteronomy 6:4 and 6:5 which says “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord. And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. They say that these verses clearly emphasize the fact that there is one God.
They also point to the last part of Isaiah 43:10 which states that, “Before Me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after Me.” And Isaiah 43:11 which says, “I, even I, am the Lord, and besides Me there is no savior.” Also, Isaiah 44:6 which says, “Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.”
There are many other Bible verses that believers of the doctrine of oneness will point to in order to support the fact that there is just one true God. They believe that Jesus Christ is the incarnation of God, God manifest in the flesh. Believers in the doctrine of oneness also like to point out that the Bible never mentions the term “Trinity” and they will say that the Bible never even discusses the concept of a Trinity and therefore they believe that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost are all one and the same, and do not represent different persons.
Arguments for the Doctrine of the Trinity
Supporters of the doctrine of the Trinity often point to Genesis 1:26 which says, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. They will tell you that by saying “let us make man in our image, after our likeness” that that passage illustrates the plurality of God.
Believers in the doctrine of the Trinity also point to Hebrews 1:2 which says, “Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;” believers in the doctrine of the Trinity say that the father made the world by the son and that implies that the son was present during creation, which again, illustrates the plurality of God.
I’m not going to take sides and say that one theology is right and the other one is wrong, I would rather let everyone decide that for themselves. It is interesting however to look at the similarities and differences of each theology and look at how each side can point to various Bible verses that will support their beliefs.
Many believers of the doctrine of the Trinity feel that they believe in a different God than people who believe in the doctrine of oneness. Supporters of the doctrine of oneness feel that they worship the same God but they simply have a different understanding. The doctrine of the Trinity says that there are three separate entities whereas believers of the doctrine of oneness say that there is one God, but separate manifestations. It’s a very interesting debate and people can devote their entire lives debating this particular subject.
Linda Dias is a very spiritual person. She likes sharing her beliefs and thoughts through her blog. She wants to ask her readers ‘Who is God?’ according to them.