Six Objections to the Trinity – 2 of 6

2 of 6:  The apostles did not articulate the trinity concept as it has been articulated by post-apostolic fathers and by people today.  That is, it is not explicitly taught in Scripture.  In yet other words, it is not explicitly taught by prophets, the apostles, or the Lord.  And it is an inadequate and unsatisfying explanation of what is taught by them).

Therefore, the choice is simple: you can either follow Christ like the Bible says to do, or you can try to follow God as a trinity of which Christ is a part like the church says to do.

It’s much simpler, and more biblical, to live for our Lord Jesus Christ.

To learn more about Christ versus the Trinity, see:

There Is No Trinity; There Is Christ

Posts to Date on the Trinity Versus Christ

 Bible notes on this post.

The purpose of this blog is to proclaim Jesus Christ to those who want to hear about Him without having to join a church – or anything else – but Him.

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30 Responses to Six Objections to the Trinity – 2 of 6

  1. Brandon E says:

    Hi Mike,
    The Scripture does not explicitly tell us what books belong in the inspired canon of Scripture, either. Did the prophets, apostles, or the Lord explicitly name all 66 books for us? They didn’t. Does that make the biblical canon a man-made invention?

    • Mike Gantt says:

      The biblical canon is a man-made invention. Having said that, I have no quarrels with it…and here’s why.

      The single criterion for inclusion in the New Testament canon is apostolicity. That is, those who agreed upon the canon (which was the various churches, long before church councils made pronouncements) did so upon the beliefs that the 27 documents we have were the only ones deemed to have come from Jesus’ apostles (i.e. those appointed personally by Him from the generation of His earthly contemporaries). In the almost two thousand years since I don’t think anyone has been able to put forth a single additional text which meets that criterion. And while massive efforts have been made to discredit some of the books in the NT canon (e.g. the disputed letters of Paul), I have not been persuaded.

      As for the OT canon, we have no list in the Scriptures themselves. However, the NT writers quote practically all of our OT canon. Moreover, historical sources – including both rabbinical and ecclesiastical – testify almost uniformly to the contents of the Hebrew Bible. I say “almost,” of course, because of the difference in contents between the Septuagint and the Masoretic Text. Therefore, regarding the Apocrypha I am indifferent. I choose to focus on the core 66 books of the entire canon, but I would not quarrel with someone who wanted to include books from the Apocrypha.

      Therefore, I believe that the 66 books are the written word of God but not because they have been canonized by the post-apostolic church. Rather I believe the OT because it constitutes the “Moses and the Prophets and the Writings” that Jesus believed, and I believe the NT because its constitutes the documents produced by those whom Jesus sent (i.e. apostles). Therefore, I believe the prophets and apostles…and I do so because of Jesus.

      • Brandon E says:

        Right, I basically agree concerning the composition of the Scriptures. Though, since not all the books of the New Testament were written by apostles per se and there were other epistles and books in circulation, determining apostolicity could be difficult for an apostate (as you’ve elsewhere claimed the church was after the first century) or unreliable church in the end of the 4th century. Thus, my point is that there are important things we believe about Scripture that are not explicitly revealed in Scripture, the composition of Scripture being the most obvious, and the fact that something can be called “post-apostolic” or a later :man-made invention” does not mean it is not a preservation of apostolic character. Whether “the trinity concept” is “an inadequate and unsatisfying explanation of what is taught by them” is something I would debate elsewhere.

        • Mike Gantt says:

          That the post-apostolic church could correctly identify apostolic documents is not an endorsement of all the other views they held. Jesus inherited His view of the Old Testament canon from scribes who could not recognize Him as Messiah. Don’t forget also that Jesus taught about the unfortunate commonality of killing the prophets and extolling them afterward (Matthew 23:29-31).

          • Brandon E says:

            That the post-apostolic church could correctly identify apostolic documents is not an endorsement of all the other views they held.

            Of course it isn’t. But neither is the fact that something is “post-apostolic” or not explicitly revealed in Scripture mean that it is not apostolic in character or an accurate description of apostolic witness.

            • Mike Gantt says:

              The trinity is built not upon the apostolic witness but rather upon philosophy. Scripture is just brought in to legitimize portions of the construct. The sine qua non of the concept, for which there is no scriptural warrant, is that three = one. For that you have to create artificial philosophical categories.

  2. Brandon E says:

    It’s not based on a philosophy that says that 3=1. That’s your philosophical analysis of what the words substantia/ousia and persona/hypostases must mean. As I pointed out, the ancient words “persona” and “hypostases” don’t exactly mean “person” in English, especially in modern usage.

    Rather the basic concept of the trinity is a summary and description of the comprehensive, relevant scriptural passages, in which:
    -The Father, Son, and Spirit are described as God or as possessing divine attributes pertaining only to the one true God, such as being eternal. Hence, the Father, Son, and Spirit are all God.
    -The Father, Son, and Spirit are each described as having personal attributes (as opposed to being described as an impersonal thing or force).
    -The Father, Son, and Spirit distinctly co-exist. One doesn’t cease being one to become the other.
    -The Father, Son, and Spirit are never separate, becase they coinhere or are inseparably in one another (which is why the word “persons” in English, though better than many alternatives, is inadequate, because we tend to think of “persons” as entirely separate individuals.)

    Which points do you disagree with, and why?

    The words “substantia” and “ousia” were chosen to refer to God’s oneness; the one divine nature that alone can be properly called God (as opposed to the Arians who said that Christ could be “God” but a separate being and “God” from the Father).

    The words “persona” or “hypostases” were chosen–out of the inadequacy of human language to fully articulate and explain God–as neutral terms to describe the distinctions between the Father, Son, and Spirit (as opposed to the modalists who contradict the scriptural witness that the Father, Son, and Spirit simultaneous co-exist).

    • Mike Gantt says:

      You’re saying that God is three persons in one being. What is the difference between a person and a being?

      • Brandon E says:

        You might have noticed that all along I’ve been saying that the word “person” is not a fully adequate description of the eternal distinctions between the Father, Son, and Spirit.

        Language is an expression of human culture, and words mean in context. There is no single real and proper definition for a word, such as “death,” “life,” “evil,” “create,” or “person.” “Person” in modern English means something different than what “persona” does in Latin and “hypostates” does in Greek. “Persona” and “hypostases” even mean something in different from one another–they were just agreed upon by the Latin and Greek churches as neutral terms to describe the distinctions between the co-existing Father, Son, and Spirit. “Person” in English means one thing when speaking about a finite, transient, individual human being, but it must something not entirely the same when applied to an infinite, eternal God, even if we were to say that God is one “person.” Nevertheless, the word “person” is preferable to “mode” or “thing” when describing God, because the Bible describes God, and the Father, Son, and Spirit, as “personal” rather than impersonal things or forces.

        To repeat what I’ve said many times already, words like “persona,” “hypostases,” “substantia,” and “ousia” were chosen to summarize and describe the biblical passages that indicate the matters I listed in four points above. Would you mind going over these points, and saying where you think they are wrong? They contradict your claims about God on crucial points. And I’m saying that where you differ from them are where your claims about God are not apostolic and biblical.

        • Mike Gantt says:

          If you’ll show me where the apostles taught about “persona,” “hypostases,” “substantia,” and “ousia,” then we could have that conversation.

          I don’t see how you can think you have apostolic teaching if you are using terms they did not use.

          • Brandon E says:

            Mike, did the apostles explicitly teach everything you claim about God (the Father became the Son and ceased to be the Father, etc…) or state on your blogs? Could you stop with the red herrings and respond to the content I wrote under the four points above?

            • Mike Gantt says:

              I do not require that your doctrine be explicitly taught by the apostles, but you must at least start with what the apostles taught to get to your doctrine. Since the apostles did not use words like “persona,” “hypostases,” “substantia,” and “ousia,” it seems like you are the one introducing red herrings. Your point that these words “summarize and describe” biblical passage is not persuasive.

              As for your request that I specifically comment on your four points:

              Rather the basic concept of the trinity is a summary and description of the comprehensive, relevant scriptural passages, in which:
              -The Father, Son, and Spirit are described as God or as possessing divine attributes pertaining only to the one true God, such as being eternal. Hence, the Father, Son, and Spirit are all God.

              By this logic, the angel of the Lord would also be God. By this logic also, the Jews would have declared the Holy Spirit to be God long before Jesus was ever born. The Spirit of God was revealed from the first chapter of Genesis, but the Old Testament never declared God to be a binity.

              -The Father, Son, and Spirit are each described as having personal attributes (as opposed to being described as an impersonal thing or force).

              The same could be said of the angel of the Lord.

              -The Father, Son, and Spirit distinctly co-exist. One doesn’t cease being one to become the other.

              So you say.

              -The Father, Son, and Spirit are never separate, becase they coinhere or are inseparably in one another (which is why the word “persons” in English, though better than many alternatives, is inadequate, because we tend to think of “persons” as entirely separate individuals.)

              This is typical of trinitarian double-speak. One minute the persons “co-exist” and the next they are “inseparably in one another” and in the next they are “distinct from one another.” I get that this is your philosophical construct but it has nothing to do with the Scriptures.

              • Brandon E says:

                1) The angel of the Lord, who appears even in human form, is identified as the Lord Himself in the Old Testament. (Exo. 3:2-6; Gen. 32:25-30; Judg. 6:11-24; 13:15-24; Zech. 1:11-12). Since, the New Testament reveals God as Father, Son, and Spirit (Matt. 28:17; 2 Cor. 13:14; Matt. 3:16-17, etc), orthodox Christians have believed that the angel of the Lord was God coming as the Son before He was revealed as Son.

                2) We both agree that the Father and Son are “distinct.” But the Bible also presents the Father and Son as being distinct and present at the same time (when the Father is here the Son cease to exist or go away, when the Son is here, the Father doesn’t cease to exist or go away) and as being not separate (John 14:10-11; 10:30). It’s a clear, straightforward presentation of the biblical facts. Just because we can’t explain how it can be so doesn’t mean that it’s not true, or that it’s double-talk. The same for God having a Son who is God yet man.

                • Mike Gantt says:

                  1. Your reference to “orthodox Christians” is telling. This has been a consistent theme of yours. Mine, by contrast, is that we must trust the Lord – not each other. See Jeremiah 17:5-8.

                  2. I don’t fault your doctrine because you can’t explain some things. I fault it because you expect people to believe a contradiction: that the Father and the Son are “distinct” and that both are God without there being two Gods.

                  Yet, I can say something good about your doctrine: What I Like About the Trinity Concept

                  • Brandon E says:

                    —-
                    Your reference to “orthodox Christians” is telling. This has been a consistent theme of yours. Mine, by contrast, is that we must trust the Lord – not each other. See Jeremiah 17:5-8.
                    —-
                    I’m simply pointing out the fallacy of saying that the angel of the Lord being identified as the Lord God disproves that God is triune, when many Christians believe that the angel of the Lord is the Son in pre-incarnate form. Many persons trusting the Lord and arriving at the same conclusion isn’t “trusting man.” Would it be fair for me to say that you “trust man” because you read the Bible written by men who were not God (Jesus didn’t directly write any of the books of Scripture) rather than let God telegraph all the true information directly into your brain, or that you “trust man” because you believe that the early church accurately preserved the apostolic writings, even though you weren’t there to verify it?

                    —-
                    I fault it because you expect people to believe a contradiction: that the Father and the Son are “distinct” and that both are God without there being two Gods.
                    —-
                    But this is exactly what the Bible presents. You yourself said that the Messiah was God while on the earth (He just wasn’t consciously aware of it) and yet He prays to, converses with, is heard by the Father God. Just because you don’t understand it and can’t explain it doesn’t mean it is a contradiction.

                    • Mike Gantt says:

                      The Bible consists of documents written by prophets and apostles on behalf of God. They were not speaking in their own names; they were speaking in the name of the Lord. I am unaware of any proponent of trinitarian doctrine who has put forth the view as “Thus saith the Lord, God is a Trinity.” Such proponents will quote Scripture but they do not speak as the prophets and apostles did, nor should they.

                      Jesus of Nazareth was a man. When his fellow Jews trusted him, they were trusting God because Jesus was not speaking in his own name but rather in God’s. You can substitute the names of Isaiah, Paul, and other biblical spokesmen in that previous sentence but you cannot do so with the names of those who teach the trinity.

  3. Brandon E says:

    Alright, so you trust that the Lord has arranged it so that persons speak in His name, and you trust that those persons weren’t deceiving you. You also trust that the Lord arranged it such that the early church was able to arrive at the right canon of Scripture, even though you weren’t there personally to verify who wrote what. So is it wrong to say that the Lord has arranged it so that His believers are placed into His Body for their protection, where every member has need of another and cannot afford to be separate (1 Cor. 12:10, 18-22), where it’s not just isolated individuals each respectively trusting their interpretations, convictions and conscience as if it were nothing less than God Himself speaking to them? Is this not how we get the 30,000+ denominations that we have on earth?

    I’m not saying that you should blindly believe whatever others tell you. But I am saying that you put yourself into self-deception-mode, a mental cocoon, when you arrive at a theological framework that no one else does and your explanation for the phenomena is–as you’ve suggested elsewhere–that those others are not spiritual, repentant, kingdom-seeking, Christ-seeking, and Bible-dependent enough to see what you see, and to think otherwise is to trust men instead of God. In actuality, you end trusting one man, yourself, over and against all the others.

    Yes, believers disagree on many issues, but they quite agree on many of the matters you’re claiming apostolic teaching contradicts. And which person or group has arrived at the theological system you’ve constructed, which invalidates the church as God’s corporate expression from the first century, and which you portray as the right interpretation of the Scriptures, equalling the teaching of the apostles?

    • Mike Gantt says:

      On a minor point in your first paragraph, I agree with your first sentence. However, on the second I do not see the canonization of texts as an act of inspiration as was the writing of the texts. As Jesus trusted the scribes and Pharisees to have collected the writings of the prophets (Matthew 23:29) so we may trust the post-apostolic churches to have collected the writings of the apostles.

      As for the main point, covered in your second two paragraphs, I really don’t think you have thought through what you are asking me to do. In a nutshell, you are asking me to forsake the understanding I believe God has given me in exchange for the understanding more than 30,000 others think that God has given them – when the 30,000 disagree on almost everything!

      • Brandon E says:


        On a minor point in your first paragraph, I agree with your first sentence. However, on the second I do not see the canonization of texts as an act of inspiration as was the writing of the texts.

        Same here, but my point lies elsewhere.


        As Jesus trusted the scribes and Pharisees to have collected the writings of the prophets (Matthew 23:29) so we may trust the post-apostolic churches to have collected the writings of the apostles.

        Here you write of Jesus trusting scribes and Pharisees (men) to get the Old Testament canon right. Does that mean that Jesus trusted men instead of God? Surely we must say no. You didn’t come up with the canon of Scripture on your own, and neither did you transcribe the early manuscripts, or eventually translate them into English. Rather, you trust that others somehow got these things right in the end, or that God sovereignly arranged it so that other people would get these things right. But this doesn’t mean that you are trusting men instead of God.

        Now, suppose that you tried to independently discern what the canon of Scripture ought to be and arrived at a canon that nobody else did. Would deciding to not conclude that everyone who disagrees with you is wrong or not spiritually-attuned mean that you trusted men instead of God? We’d have to say no, it would only mean not trusting your own discernment. Would a person who believed that the others and not you got things right be automatically trusting men instead of God, simply because their views happen to fall within something of a consensus? We’d also have to say no.

        If these things are so, why would it automatically mean trusting men instead of God if only you arriving at your framework caused you to scratch your head and say, hm, I could be mistaken on some of these points and hence I shouldn’t be so dogmatic? Maybe when I “see” things in Scripture or have those “Aha!” moments it’s not necessarily the Holy Spirit, but just how my brain clicks and then systematizes things according to its own particular set of presuppositions?

        As for the main point, covered in your second two paragraphs, I really don’t think you have thought through what you are asking me to do. In a nutshell, you are asking me to forsake the understanding I believe God has given me in exchange for the understanding more than 30,000 others think that God has given them – when the 30,000 disagree on almost everything!

        I have thought it through. I am asking for a little more epistemological humility. As I said, Christians disagree on many things, but they quite agree on many of the points that are critical to your framework. I’m not saying that the majority is always right, but that your reasoning is circular in a way that discounts the faithfulness or spirituality of those who disagree with you. Despite being in a “sect of one” in which Mike Gantt is the only known member, you make out your framework to be the apostolic teaching in Scripture, and the explanation you have provided (at TGC, elsewhere throughout my conversations with you on your blogs) for why nobody else seems to arrive at your framework is that those who disagree with you are not spiritually-minded, not repentant, not kingdom-seeking, not Bible-dependent, not ready for the truth, or not trusting of Christ more than other Christians. You say that following Christ is what is truly important, but then claim that anyone who truly follows Christ will arrive at your interpretations as if they were really that critical. It is as if you believe that the Holy Spirit guides your reading of the Scriptures but could never guide others to beliefs contrary to your own on these points.

        • Mike Gantt says:

          I trust men to do the things of men and God to do the things of God. When God works through men (such as in the writing of holy scripture) the integrity of both is important. By contrast, gathering Scripture (that is, the writings left behind by the apostles) takes no more inspiration than gathering up the leftover bread and fishes after Jesus fed the multitudes.

          You want me to show more “epistemological humility” but you won’t display any so that I know what it looks like. That is, you don’t demonstrate any less certainty about your views than I have in mine. Why should I be less certain of my views than you are of yours?

          I believe that Jesus is Lord and that the Bible is the word of God. This puts me very much in agreement with Christians. If in order to maintain my conviction that Jesus is Lord and the Bible is the word of God, I have to forsake other teachings (e.g. eternal conscious torment in the afterlife, unfilled promises for the kingdom of God) which puts me at odds with some of those Christians then I simply have to do so. A man can never please God by forsaking his conscience so that he can get approval from people – no matter who the people are.

          • Brandon E says:

            —-
            By contrast, gathering Scripture (that is, the writings left behind by the apostles) takes no more inspiration than gathering up the leftover bread and fishes after Jesus fed the multitudes.
            —-
            Not entirely true. It’s easier to recognize what a leftover bread and fishes look like than it is to discern true apostles and prophets from false ones and to transcribe their writings faithfully and accurately.

            —-
            You want me to show more “epistemological humility” but you won’t display any so that I know what it looks like. That is, you don’t demonstrate any less certainty about your views than I have in mine. Why should I be less certain of my views than you are of yours?

            For one thing, I don’t say that I am right over and my teaching is the apostolic truth in Scripture over and against everybody else. I also don’t say that the reason why nobody else seems to arrive at my framework is because because they are not spiritually-minded, not repentant, not kingdom-seeking, not Bible-dependent, not ready for the truth, not trusting Christ, etc. Like many others, I believe that persons of equal spirituality could hold, say, dispensationalist views or preterist views. I don’t think that affirming trinitarian views automatically makes one more spiritual or more ready for the truth; that is, I think that an unspiritual person can hold trinitarian views just like an unspiritual person can hold alternative views. On a variety of matters on which I think that genuine seeking Christians can differ you combine a number of extreme positions and declare that it is the apostolic teaching and that those who disagree are lacking in faithfulness to Christ and the Scriptures, as if anyone who is truly faithful to Christ and Scriptures will agree with your conscience.

            In other words, you’re making little distinction between your conscience and the Holy Spirit’s revelation and faithfulness to Scripture over and against a great number of followers of Christ, as if obeying your conscience and convictions absolutely makes you spiritual and faithful, but when others obey their conscience and convictions and it disagrees with you they are discounted as unspiritual and unfaithful. In other words, your mental framework makes your conscience to the exclusion of others’ consciences the final test for truths outside of your self and which concern all of us, with little recognition that your conscience could be mistaken, and that’s what I’m saying with regard to epistemological humility.

            • Mike Gantt says:

              The OT canon was settled by the time Jesus and the apostles came along. As for the NT, it does take more to recognize whether a document can be traced to an apostle than it does to pick up leftover bread and fish, but neither task requires the divine inspiration necessary to write scripture for the Lord.

              The only conclusion I can draw from what you are saying is that you want me to be less certain of my views than you are of yours. Sorry, but I cannot oblige.

              • Brandon E says:


                The OT canon was settled by the time Jesus and the apostles came along.

                Settled how and by whom? How did they discern the true prophets from the false ones? It seems that Jesus had to “trust men” or else trust that God sovereignly used a group of people, rather than isolated individuals, to get the OT canon right.

                As for the NT, it does take more to recognize whether a document can be traced to an apostle than it does to pick up leftover bread and fish, but neither task requires the divine inspiration necessary to write scripture for the Lord.

                I agree, but here again we’re back to saying that a group of people are to be trusted, or that God is to be trusted to have used a group of people, to discern who the true apostles were and to faithfully transcribe and preserve their writings. This is an example in which it is not a bad thing to say that hey, it looks like a community got things right, or else God doesn’t always work through private individuals. Therefore it is not automatically to “trust men” instead of God if our views happen to fall within a community or even a consensus, and that if an individual comes up with a contradictory view it means that he trusts God more than the others.

                Does interpreting the Bible require the same divine inspiration that was needed to produce the Bible? If so, what is the precedent for saying that God would give such inspiration to individuals, unless they are an apostle or prophet? If not, why is it to “trust men” to say that you could be mistaken, since many Christians interpret the Bible but no one seems to arrive at your system? Is everybody else a mere academic? Are you more spiritual than all of them? Is everyone who disagrees with you a degenerate scribe and Pharisee, while you the pure, seeking one?

                The only conclusion I can draw from what you are saying is that you want me to be less certain of my views than you are of yours. Sorry, but I cannot oblige.

                I just described how the extreme way you hold and present your beliefs is different. I don’t say that my beliefs–even on the more minor issues where seeking Christians are more likely to differ–arranged into a system that only I hold are the apostolic teaching and that if you don’t arrive at it that must mean you’re not spiritually-dependent, kingdom-seeking, or trusting the Lord.

                • Mike Gantt says:

                  God sovereignly used Pharaoh, but that doesn’t mean God wanted the Israelites to trust him.

                  Jesus experienced firsthand the phenomenon of those who professed faith in God but actually put their trust in people. In John 5:43-44 He specifically describes how they pay attention to those with human pedigree but don’t trust a single person speaking in the name of God. Of course, a single person speaking in the name of God is not necessarily right, but, contrary to your argument, he is not necessarily wrong either. At that moment, the entire leadership of the God-ordained nation was against the single person speaking on behalf of God. Did God want the observers in the crowd to give more credence to the most respected men of God on the planet, who were practically unanimous in their opposition to Jesus’ views, or did He want them to listen to their hearts for the truth – and then follow the truth wherever it led?

                  I am not making judgments about anyone else who has not previously heard these truths. But I am telling you, since you have heard them, that if you continue to reject them then indeed you are being more fleshly than spiritual, more church-seeking than kingdom-seeking, and more trusting of men than you are of the Lord.

                  • Brandon E says:

                    —-
                    God sovereignly used Pharaoh, but that doesn’t mean God wanted the Israelites to trust him.
                    —-
                    God didn’t sovereignly use Pharaoh to compile a trustworthy body of canonical Scripture. What of Pharaoh was there to be trusted? Mike, you’re latching onto expressions like “God sovereignly used…” without dealing with substance.
                    —-
                    Jesus experienced firsthand the phenomenon of those who professed faith in God but actually put their trust in people. In John 5:43-44 He specifically describes how they pay attention to those with human pedigree but don’t trust a single person speaking in the name of God. Of course, a single person speaking in the name of God is not necessarily right, but, contrary to your argument, he is not necessarily wrong either. At that moment, the entire leadership of the God-ordained nation was against the single person speaking on behalf of God. Did God want the observers in the crowd to give more credence to the most respected men of God on the planet, who were practically unanimous in their opposition to Jesus’ views, or did He want them to listen to their hearts for the truth – and then follow the truth wherever it led?
                    —-
                    I’m not saying that we should trust pedigrees, or that a single person can never be right. My point has been your lack of epistemological humility, seen in your pronunciamentos about anyone who disagrees with your views. The “single person” in John 5:43-44 is the Lord Jesus in opposition to the Pharisees, not you in opposition to all others, including seeking Christians. Since you are not the Lord Jesus, an apostle, or a prophet, why should you or anyone else believe that you have an especial characteristic of trusting the Lord more than anyone who might disagree with your views?
                    —-
                    I am not making judgments about anyone else who has not previously heard these truths. But I am telling you, since you have heard them, that if you continue to reject them then indeed you are being more fleshly than spiritual, more church-seeking than kingdom-seeking, and more trusting of men than you are of the Lord.
                    —-
                    Mike,.not only are you the only one who thinks so, but you’re not the Lord Jesus. What significance should I or anyone else attach to your judgments? We could name many lovers of God, lifetime readers of the Scriptures, and martyrs (not mere academics, or letter-learned scribes and Pharisees who opposed Christ), who believed that the Lord’s coming and the resurrection of the dead would be literal, that God is triune, that the church as the Body of Christ (not merely individual morality, as if the two could only contradict each other) is for today, or who otherwise contradicted your system on points of which they were well aware. Are you more spiritual and faithful than all of them? Does Jesus only endorse Mike Gantt whenever someone disagrees with him?

                    • Mike Gantt says:

                      Jesus didn’t ascribe inspiration to those who preserved the OT scriptures. Why then do you want to ascribe inspiration to those who preserved the NT scriptures?

                      No one should trust anything I say because of me. They should only trust what makes sense to them – what seems, upon sober reflection and in a prayerful spirit, to be truth (that is, to be consistent with the Bible).

                    • Brandon E says:


                      Jesus didn’t ascribe inspiration to those who preserved the OT scriptures. Why then do you want to ascribe inspiration to those who preserved the NT scriptures?

                      I don’t. I’m saying that God has arranged it so that the Scriptures were gathered, discerned, faithfully transcribed and preserved in community that was there to discern true prophets and apostles from the false. To accept that a consensus got things right, even though we weren’t there to independently arrive and verify the canon for ourselves, is not to “trust man” or “fear man” instead of God. Accordingly, your earlier attempt to pit trusting the Lord against “trusting” each other (that is, trusting that you and not others arrived at their conclusions by truly trusting the Lord) is not entirely appropriate. I don’t think we should blindly believe what others say without living before the Lord and seeing the matters for ourselves. But neither do I think anyone who is not an apostle or prophet should be so absolutely certain that have the truth and those who reject it are less spiritual or trusting of God. Especially if their truth is comprised of a variety of extreme views commonly rejected by lovers of God, lifelong readers of Scripture, and martyrs, and is arranged into a system that nobody else is known to have. What precedent is there in Scripture for one person who is not a prophet, apostle, or the Son of God, to think that he trusts the Lord so much that he discovers the truth that overrides everyone else who might disagree with him?

  4. Mike Gantt says:

    Every time I take my car on the highway, I’m trusting all the oncoming drivers to stay in their lane. Every time I listen to the weatherman I’m trusting him to tell me what he knows about meteorological conditions. We all trust each other in various ways for various reasons. I wasn’t complaining about this sort of behavior, which is quite normal and appropriate.

    My point was that when someone claims to speak in the name of the Lord, you must make a conscience-based decision about whether the things he is saying are right or not. You can search the Scriptures if necessary, but to defer the decision to “the community” – whatever you determine that to be – is an abdication of personal responsibility.

    Remember: Peter was able to get the gold star in Matthew 16 when he was willing to take a different stance from what people were saying about Jesus and confess instead what he heard from God and from none of them.

    As for your last question, there are many examples. Perhaps you could start with Eldad and Medad – Moses showed no jealousy, so perhaps neither should you (Numbers 11:26-30). Then consider that Joel echoed Moses’ hope when he prophesied that God would pour out His Spirit (the means by which anyone truly speaks in the name of the Lord) on all flesh – as confirmed in Acts 2 (when the crowd wanted to know just how hoi polloi were getting to proclaim the mighty deeds of God. Consider also 1 Corinthians 12-14 in which Paul makes clear that “you can all prophesy one by one.” Remember, too, that Jesus said that he who was least in the kingdom of heaven would have more to say than the greatest of all the prophets. And then there was the time that the Pharisees objected about children shouting “Hosanna” and Jesus responded from the psalms that even infants and babes would be used to proclaim God’s praises.

    Everyone is going to heaven! The kingdom of God has come! The Lord our God is in our midst! These are the mighty works of God and any human being is authorized to proclaim them.

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