<Previous

Table of Contents

Next>

What Scripture Says About Salvation

A Bible Study by Fred Kenison

 

Monograph 14:  God the Father


 

 

Summary Highlights of Monograph 14

 

 

The expression "God the Father" is found 13 times in the New Testament, often in the introductions of the epistles.  However, to understand what the term "father" meant to the Jews of that day, we need to turn to the Old Testament.  A word does not necessarily mean the same thing in different cultures.

 

The question also arises as to whether the term "father," when applied to God, actually creates a person of the trinity?  Or, is this usage simply a description of God's attitude toward men, describing his behavior toward them?  This may be partially answered by checking some scriptures spoken by Jesus, as well as those about him.

 

In John 14:6-7: 

"Jesus saith unto him [Thomas], I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.  If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also." 

 

Jesus was quite plainly telling Thomas that when he saw Jesus, he was also seeing all the characteristics of the Father, or "my Father" as Jesus said.

 

The question in John 14:9 has often been cited as evidence that Jesus and God are the same. 

"Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Show us the Father?" 

 

Jesus went on to say that,

"I am in the Father, and the Father in me." (John 14:11). 

 

He was not saying that he and the Father are one and the same, but that he was accurately portraying the Father to them.  When he said that he was the truth, he was speaking in relationship to his revelation of the Father to them.

 

John 1:17 says,

"For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ." 

 

Note that the law was "given by" Moses but grace and truth "was given by" Jesus.  The word by comes from dia, and it denotes not the primary but the secondary means.  Moses was not the law, nor was Jesus the truth; they were both the messengers.

 

When Jesus told his disciples that he would send them "the spirit of truth," and that the spirit he sent would take the things of him and show them unto them (John 16:13-15), he was simply stating that the spirit that constantly flowed from God would also verify everything he had said and done to reveal God as a Father.  This was the primary purpose of the holy spirit, despite many contrary claims.

 

Many of the religions of antiquity had gods which their adherents referred to as "father."  They realized that the genesis of human life came through the man.  Logically, then, when they began to wonder where the first man came from they assumed that a god must have sired him.  This made men a blood relative of the god in question and led to an orgiastic worship of many ancient gods.

 

The Hebrew religion had a god they also referred to as father, but instead of looking to their god as a progenitor of flesh and blood, they worshiped him as their creator.  Isaiah 45:12 states this very well: 

"I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded."

 

When the Israelites came into any new country, there was always a mental battle as to which "father" they would worship-the father god which originally begat man, or God the Father who created man and always stood apart from man as creator.

 

The ancient pagans referred to their god as a literal father, their progenitor.  The Hebrews used the word "Father" when speaking of their God in a metaphorical sense, a figure of speech in which one word is employed for another-a method of description which likens one thing to another by referring to it as if it were the other thing.  They knew God was their creator, yet they referred to him as their Father.  If the metaphors are missed, it is easy to misinterpret the scriptures.

 

What was an Old Testament flesh and blood father like?  What were his characteristics?  What authority did he have?  If Abraham is used for one example, we note that he had absolute authority within his tribe.  His sons, grandsons, and slaves were subject to his authority.  The work of all those in the tribe enriched Abraham, who in turn provided for the needs of the others.  For example, all the herds belonged only to Abraham, not to Abraham and his sons and grandsons.  This same thing was noted when Jacob married into the family of Laban.  The herds he enlarged belonged only to Laban.

 

When a Hebrew thought of a father, he thought of an authority figure with absolute power.  If a person yielded to and served this authority figure, his needs were met through the good-will and love of the father.  The father, then, came to mean the one through whom all blessings came, and also the one who disciplined and corrected with absolute judgment and authority.

 

In the Old Testament, God was the one who promised blessings to those who faithfully served him according to his precepts, and also the one who brought wrath and judgment upon those who refused to serve him.  He was not only the God of providence, but also the God of judgment.  We can easily see how the Israelites came to apply the metaphorical name of Father to God.

 

A few scriptures from the Old Testament may lend further enlightenment in the use of the word "father."  II Kings 2:12 says,

"And Elisha saw it, and he cried, My father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof." 

 

The word for father comes from abAb was used to designate both a real father or anyone who held a position similar to that of a father, as in the case of Elisha and Elijah.  Elisha had been a student and servant to Elijah, and therefore referred to him as "father."

 

Job 29:14-16 contains metaphors about Job's life and actions. 

"I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem.  I was eyes to the blind, and feet was I to the lame.  I was a father to the poor." 

 

The metaphors are clearly seen.  Righteousness is not clothing, nor is judgment a robe or a diadem.  Neither was he actually eyes to the blind, although he may have guided them; nor was he feet to the lame, except perhaps for going and doing for them.  And he was not the actual father of the poor, even though he probably provided for them from his largess.  Was Job creating a personality apart from himself as father, or merely stating the means he used to express his personality?

 

Isaiah 22:20-21 refers to the governor as a father. 

"And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will call my servant Eliakim the son of Hilkiah:  And I will clothe him with thy robe, and strengthen him with thy girdle, and I will commit thy government into his hand: and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Judah." 

 

It is quite evident that one man could not be the actual father to the whole city, so this must be speaking metaphorically.

 

Joseph, when telling his brothers about being sold into captivity and coming to Egypt, said,

"So now it was not you that sent me hither, but God: and he hath made me a father to Pharaoh, and lord of all his house." (Genesis 45:8). 

 

He was clearly not Pharaoh's earthly father, but only an adviser to him.  Again, this is a metaphor-using father instead of adviser, or counselor.

 

In II Kings 6:21, the king calls Elisha father; in Judges 18:19, the soldiers told a priest to be their father; in I Samuel 24:11, David called Saul father.  In Job 17:14, father is used as a personification:

"I have said to corruption, Thou art my father."

 

The founder was often spoken of as the father of a clan or tribe.  For instance, Abraham was called the father of Israel.  This is but a step away from speaking metaphorically of Jehovah as being the Father of Israel. 

 

Isaiah 64:8 says,

"But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand." 

 

The creator is referred to as a father, not as a progenitor, but as the one to whom Israel should look for blessings and judgment.

 

Psalms 68:5 refers to God as,

"A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation." 

 

God is the one who uses his power to both provide and act as judge of those who mistreat widows.  Jeremiah 2:27 says that unbelievers could even say to an idol made from a tree, "Thou art my father."

 

These scriptures certainly do not support the theory of the trinitarian "father" as a person, but rather appear to be using human terminology to explain some of God's attributes.  How can people explain the inconceivable? 

 

God reveals only as much of himself as we are able to understand.  He is our creator, and the heaven of heavens cannot contain him.  Even using a masculine pronoun in speaking of God has a tendency to create the impression of gender, that God is a male and, therefore, a father in reality.

 

Deuteronomy 32:18 says,

"Of the Rock that begat thee thou art unmindful, and hast forgotten God that formed thee." 

 

The word begat is the same word used to describe a woman in travail, or bringing forth a child.  The Interlinear Hebrew Bible translates this verse: 

"You forgot the Rock that brought you into being; and neglected the God that formed you." 

The relationship between the Rock, or God, and people, is compared to giving birth.

 

Isaiah 60:16 contains another metaphor when talking about Zion:

"Thou shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings." 

 

Normally, only the breasts of mothers are nursed, or suckled. 

 

Also,  in Isaiah 66:13: 

"As one whom his mother comforteth, so will I comfort you." 

 

The Lord was taking upon himself the attributes of a mother.  Does this also make God a mother?  If so, then perhaps God is actually a quadruple instead of a trinity.

 

To understand God the Father, we must also understand the name El Shaddai.  The name Shaddai is translated as Almighty, and this name is applied to Jehovah 46 times in the Old Testament. 

 

Girdlestone (p. 32) says,

"The title Shaddai really indicates the fulness and riches of God's grace and would remind the Hebrew reader that from God comes every good and perfect gift - that He is never weary of pouring forth His mercies upon His people, and that He is more ready to give than they are to receive.  The word is connected with a root which signifies a breast, and hence the idea is similar to that contained in our word exubrance."

 

The word shad is used to describe a woman's breast, and shaddai is the plural form of shad.  Because of this, God is sometimes referred to as "the breasted one," indicating his characteristics as a provider and nurturer.

 

El Shaddai is the name by which Jehovah identified himself to Abraham.  El signified the power of Jehovah, and Shaddai pointed to his inexhaustible supply of blessings.  Jehovah provides everything created man needs, and man should look to him for sustenance even as a child seeks its mother's breast.  The name Shaddai definitely emphasizes the "motherly" characteristics of Jehovah as he/she provides for his/her children.

 

Several other scriptures show that the name El Shaddai is essentially applied to God as provider.  For instance:  Genesis 17:1, 28:3, 35:11, 43:14, 49:25; Exodus 6:3; Numbers 24:4, 24:16; Ruth 1:20-21; Psalms 68:14, 91:1; Isaiah 13:6; Ezekial 1:24, 10:5;  Joel 1:15.  The book of Job uses the name 31 times.  By using El Shaddai, the scriptures show that Jehovah is referred to metaphorically as both a male and a mother.

 

We are all the children of God by creation, but some want to claim another type of childhood.  They seem to think that faith causes them to become actual children of God.  However, accepting God as a literal father is following the pagan belief that God is a progenitor and not a creator.  Faith is the means to maturity, but never to a filial flesh and blood relationship.  God always stands apart as creator, whether or not he is referred to as a father.

 

Understanding the Old Testament will help clarify what is taught in the New Testament.  Paul used the term "God the Father" eight times, more than any other writer.  In I Corinthians 8:6, he emphasized God as an Old Testament God of providence.:

"But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him." 

 

To Paul, God was the one whom are all things are out of, ek.

 

There is also one Lord, or master, Jesus Christ, through, dia, whom are all things, including men.  Dia is the preposition showing secondary influence.  The Father, or God, is the primary cause of all things created through Jesus Christ.

 

In II Timothy 1:2 and in Titus 1:4, Paul portrays God as a Father providing grace, mercy and peace to men, and this thought is repeated again in Titus 1:4.  Do not lose sight of the fact that Paul's emphasis of God as a Father followed the Old Testament concept of providence.

 

In Galatians 1:13, Paul said that God the Father was the One who has the authority to appoint him (Paul) as an apostle:

"Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;)." 

 

In Philippians 2:11, Paul said that when men confess Jesus Christ as Lord it is to the glory of God the Father.

 

Peter also used the term "God the Father" in emphasizing the foreknowledge of God.  John used the term "God the Father" in John 6:27, and in II John 1:3, he acknowledged that God is the provider of grace, mercy and peace, even as Paul did.  Jude spoke of the set apart ones in God the Father (Jude 1:1).

 

In these eight scriptures only I Corinthians 8:6 has a definite article in the Greek manuscript, while in the other seven verses the definite article was added by the translators.  Therefore, we can conclude that the term "God the Father" actually appears rarely in the original Greek manuscripts. 

 

In these other verses the use was indefinite and should properly be translated as either a father God, or simply God, Father.  Furthermore, none of the authors departed from the Old Testament concept of using the word Father in a metaphorical sense.

 

When Jesus referred to "the Father," he always did so in a patriarchal sense.  The Father he demonstrated to men was the one who required absolute obedience to his will.  For instance, in the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus yielded himself in complete submission to the desires of the Father:

"And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt." (Mark 14:36).

 

Speaking in terms used to describe the father-son relationship of that era, Jesus was the perfect son of the perfect Father.  Most modern-day sons cannot even conceive of working for the good of the father and waiting to receive their inheritance at the wishes of the father. 

 

Jesus did whatever he did for the glory of the Father.  He also taught his followers that whatever they did should be to the glory of God, looking forward to their inheritance at the coming of the kingdom of God.  When the kingdom finally comes, Jesus will also receive his reward in being the king, or anointed aide, the christ of God, and he will rule and reign over the earth for 1,000 years.

 

Jesus always taught about the great love of the Father.  This was demonstrated by the love of the father in the parable of the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32).  God's love is the root cause of his demand for absolute obedience to his will, and he desires the services of his children based on love.

 

This point is emphasized in the answer Jesus gave the scribe, recorded in Mark 12:29-30: 

"And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment." 

 

Notice the absolute obedience demanded upon the basis of love of God.

 

The entire life of Jesus was one of submission and obedience for the patriarchal type father portrayed in the Old Testament and spoken of in a metaphorical manner.  If God is the God of all blessings, based on love, he is no less the God of all power and judgment.  Since he is both, and will always discipline the wayward child, he is not to be taken lightly.

 

Yet, at the same time, Jesus introduced a term which throws new light on our relationship with God.  When Jesus admitted to the fatherhood of God, he admitted to the dominion of God-no equality here at all.  Dominion is an admission of limitation, and Jesus acknowledged his limitation when he said he did not know the date of his coming as king because these things were left to the Father.

 

Paul carried this one step further in I Corinthians 15:23-28. 

"But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.  Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.  For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.  The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.  For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.  And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all."

 

This scripture states unequivocally that Jesus will still be subject to God even after the kingdom age.  And why not?  He is still a man, albeit a glorified man, and all men, even when glorified, will still be subject to the dominion of God.  Jesus did not empty himself of the nature of God for just his years here on earth; for all eternity he will be identified with men as a man.

 

Philippians 2:5-11,

"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.  Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name:  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;  And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." 

 

In the beginning, Jesus was the logos of God, and he was with God, but that was before he emptied himself and became flesh.

 

Jesus inserted the word "Abba" into one of his prayers to God, which is the equivalent to a small child of our time saying, "Daddy."  Curiously enough, the only place Jesus used "Abba" was while praying in the garden of Gethsemane (Mark 14:36).  He was asking the Father, Abba, to remove the cup from him.

 

Calling God by the name "Daddy" may have seemed sacrilegious to the Jews, and probably to many Christians today.  However, in close examination, two thoughts stand out.  The first is that by uttering this cry, Jesus acknowledged his absolute dependence upon God.  He not only looked to God for his sustenance, but also for his guidance. 

 

Second, it also displayed a childlike assurance and trust that even though he was suffering now, he was certain (with the faith of a little child and the commitment of a child) that everything would work out for his good.  Jesus completely trusted his Daddy in everything without question.  No wonder God returned him as a glorified man to the position of Lord and Christ upon his ascension (see Acts 2:36 and Luke 2:11).

 

Paul expanded this thought in the two times that he used the word "Abba."  In Romans 8:15-16, he said,

"For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.  The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:"

 

And, in Galatians 4:6-7, he wrote,

"And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.  Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ." 

 

The word Paul used for sons was huioi, which indicated a mature person.  This provides an interesting insight: the attitude of a mature son is to accept the things of God as a small child would!

 

When we realize the importance and significance of our adoption, then we will mature as we depend more and more on God for all elements of salvation instead of ourselves and what we mistakenly think we must do.  "Must do" reflects law and the attitude of a servant, not the attitude of a small child who looks at God as a Daddy in absolute faith and hope.

 

Jesus, in his most extreme suffering, showed his maturity by calling God, Abba.  If Jesus was made perfect (mature) by his suffering (Hebrews 2:10), then he was showing his maturity at this late stage of his life here on earth.  It was at this point that he called God, Abba.  Perhaps we, too, will mature to the point where we can honestly call God, Abba, Daddy.  In most churches today this would be seen as presumptuous blasphemy.

 

What a blessing to be able to feel as a small child, so to speak, and to climb up on your Daddy's lap for a warm snuggle and a confident, loving talk.  It is amazing how the Bible teaches that in spiritual maturity we seem to regress from self-assurance of the law and outward piety to the trusting attitude of a small child who can address God in absolute trust as Daddy.  God is our creator, and yet he is so loving toward his creation that the highest regard we can  show him is the acceptance of a small child for his Daddy.  No wonder that when Paul discerned this he said,

"the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God." (I Corinthians 3:19).

 

The words "father" and "god"are used many times in union, usually in doxology or prayer.  The word "father," in this sense, is expressing the sovereignty of God and men's attitude toward that sovereignty rather than a relationship.

 

In summary, please realize that this small study of one aspect of the word "father" only scratches the surface of what could be done.  A complete study of the father concept would be a beautiful work with many blessings to be gleaned by anyone who took the time to do it.

 

The scriptures relate an attempt by Jesus and his disciples to express in human terms the inscrutable God and men's attitude toward him.  In the Hebrew economy, the Father was the one who received the most reverence and awe from his family.  The father wielded the stick for disobedience and also administered the blessings to be derived from serving him.

 

This attitude toward the human father was used as a metaphor to teach men what could be understood about the attitude of a transcendent God toward his creation, man.  To say that this creates one of three characters called "Father" in a trinity is a travesty of the scriptures.  This is especially true in light of the continued manhood of Jesus who is at the right hand of God, acting as man's representative throughout eternity.

 

Scripture indicates that The God is one, not three.  Furthermore, to limit God to expressing himself in only three manners is ridiculous.  God, as the scriptures show, is expressed as a mother as well as a father.  Anyone conducting an open-minded search of the scriptures would no doubt find many more word pictures, or metaphors, attempting to express God in understandable terms.  Thanks be to God that he is so great that we will have the ages of ages to continue learning of his goodness toward us.

 

The so-called "doctrine of the trinity" was perhaps an attempt on the part of some men to clarify the attributes of God.  But attempting to limit God to this degree, and then to claim it as scriptural, is a travesty of the highest order.  The Bible speaks of God, not as he is, but in his relationship to man.  If we try to conceptualize God, we make an idol of him, and we set ourselves outside God by objectifying him.  And, that is essentially the essence of paganism.

 

Return to top

 

 

Summary Highlights of Monograph 14

 

#  The Old Testament contains the key to understanding what the term

     "father" means as applied to God.  

#  When Jesus said that he was the truth, he was speaking in relationship

     to his revelation of the Father.  

#  The law was "given by" Moses but grace and truth were "given by"

     Jesus.  The word by comes from dia, and it denotes not the primary but

     the secondary means.  Moses was not the law, nor was Jesus the truth;

     they were both the messengers.  

#  Jesus stated that the spirit that constantly flows from God would also

     verify everything he had said and done to reveal God as a Father.  This

     was the primary purpose of the holy spirit.  

#  Many of the religions of antiquity had gods which their adherents

     referred to as "father."  They realized that the genesis of human life

     came through the man.  Logically, then, when they began to wonder

     where the first man came from they assumed that a god must have

     begotten him.  This made man a blood relative of the god in question

     and led to an orgiastic worship of many ancient gods.  

#  The Hebrew religion had a god they also referred to as Father, but

     instead of looking to their God as a progenitor of flesh and blood, they

     worshiped him as their creator.

#  When the Israelites came into any new country, there was always a

     mental battle as to which "father" they would worship-the father

     god which originally begat man, or God the Father who created man

     and always stood apart from man as creator.  

#  The ancient pagans referred to their god as a literal father, their

     progenitor.  The Hebrews used the word "Father" when speaking of

     their God in a metaphorical sense, a figure of speech in which one word

     is employed for another-a method of description which likens one

     thing to another by referring to it as if it were the other thing.  They

     knew God was their creator, yet they referred to him as their Father.  

#  The Hebrew concept of a father was someone with absolute authority

     and absolute power.  If family members yielded to and served this

     authority figure, their needs were met through the good-will and love

     of the father.  The father came to mean the one through whom all

     blessings came, and also the one who disciplined and corrected with

     absolute judgment and authority.  

#  In the Old Testament, God was the one who promised blessings to

     those who faithfully served him according to his precepts, and also the

     one who brought wrath and judgment upon those who refused to

     serve him.  He was not only the God of providence, but also the God of

     judgment.  We can easily see how the Israelites came to apply the

     metaphorical name of Father to God.  

#  If the metaphors are missed, it is easy to misinterpret the scriptures.  

 

#  The founder was often spoken of as the father of a clan or tribe.  For

     instance, Abraham was called the father of Israel.  This is but a step

     away from speaking metaphorically of Jehovah as being the Father of

     Israel.  

#  The scriptures certainly do not support the theory of the trinitarian

     "father" as a person, but rather appear to be using human terminology

     to explain some of God's attributes.  

#  Even using a masculine pronoun in speaking of God has a tendency to

     create the impression of gender, that God is a male and, therefore a

     father in reality.  

#  El Shaddai was the name by which Jehovah identified himself to

     Abraham.  El signified the power of Jehovah, and Shaddai pointed to

     his inexhaustible supply of blessings.  The word shad is used to describe

     a woman's breast, and shaddai is the plural form of shad.  Because of

     this, Jehovah could be referred to as "the breasted one," indicating his

     characteristics as a provider and nurturer.  

#  Accepting God as a literal father is following the pagan belief that God

     is a progenitor and not a creator.  

#  We are all the children of God by creation, but some want to claim

     another type of childhood.  Many seem to think that faith causes them

     to become actual children of God.  Faith is the means to maturity, but

     never to a filial flesh and blood relationship.  God always stands apart

     as creator, whether or not he is referred to as a father.  

#  Paul's emphasis of God as a Father followed the Old Testament

     concept of providence.  

#  Peter also used the term "God the Father" in emphasizing the

     foreknowledge of God.  John used the term "God the Father" to

     acknowledge that God is the provider of grace, mercy and peace.  

#  When Jesus referred to "the Father," he always did so in a patriarchal

     sense.  The Father he demonstrated to men was the one who required

     absolute obedience to his will.  

#  The entire life of Jesus was one of submission and obedience for the

     patriarchal type father portrayed in the Old Testament and spoken of

     in a metaphorical manner.  If God is the God of all blessings, based on

     love, he is no less the God of all power and judgment.  Since he is

     both, and will always discipline the wayward child, he is not to be

     taken lightly.  

#  At the same time, Jesus introduced a term which throws new light on

     our relationship with God.  When Jesus admitted to the fatherhood of

     God, he admitted to the dominion of God-no equality here at all.  

#  Jesus inserted the word "Abba" into one of His prayers to God, which is

     the equivalent of a small child saying, "Daddy."  By uttering this cry,

     Jesus acknowledged his absolute dependence upon God.  He not only

     looked to God for his sustenance, but also for his guidance.  

#  When Jesus said abba, it also displayed a childlike assurance and trust

     that even though he was suffering now, he was certain (with the faith

     of a little child and the commitment of a child) that everything would

     work out for his good.  Jesus completely trusted his "Daddy" in

     everything without question.  

#  The Bible teaches that in spiritual maturity we seem to regress from

     outward piety and self-assurance of the law to the trusting attitude of a

     small child who can address God in absolute trust as Daddy.  God is

     our creator, and yet he is so loving toward his creation that the

     highest regard we can show him is to accept him as a small child

     accepts his Daddy.  

#  This attitude toward the human father was used as a metaphor to teach

     men what could be understood about the attitude of a transcendent

     God toward his creation.  To say that this creates one of three

     characters called "Father" in a trinity is a travesty of the scriptures.  

#  The Bible speaks of God, not as he is, but in his relationship to man.  If

     we try to conceptualize God, we make an idol of him, and we set

     ourselves outside God by objectifying him.  And, that is the essence of

     paganism.  

#  The so-called "doctrine of the trinity" was no doubt an attempt to

     clarify the attributes of God.  But attempting to limit God to this

     degree, and then claiming it as scriptural, is a travesty of the highest

     order.

 

RETURN TO TOP OF PAGE


 

© 2009, Fred Kenison and Merrill Douglass. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.