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John 1:10


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#1 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:23 AM

The following passage in John's gospel excites trinitarians immensely:

John 1:
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2  The same was in the beginning with God.
3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

4  In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

6  There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.
7  The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.
8  He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

9  That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.
10  He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.


What does this all mean? What in particular is this word which is with God, and which later on is made flesh?

Let's start here:

2 Chronicles 24:
19...our fathers have not kept the word of the LORD...


How do you 'keep' a word, especially when a word does not actually exist?
The verse continues, and demonstrates how:

2 Chronicles 24:
19...our fathers have not kept the word of the LORD, to do after all that is written in this book.


You do that which the word commands. This is how the word of God is 'kept'.

#2 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:23 AM

But is it possible to 'see' the word? Most certainly:

1 Samuel 9:
27...Samuel said to Saul, Bid the servant pass on before us, (and he passed on,) but stand thou still a while, that I may shew thee the word of God.


Samuel was going to show Saul the word of God. Now just how did he intend to do that? Was he going to reveal to Saul the pre-incarnate Christ? He was not. To answer your question, 'how a spoken word 'came' (appeared)' as something which is seen, I provide for you the very next verse in the narrative (which is the first verse of the next chapter):

1 Samuel 10:
1Then Samuel took a vial of oil, and poured it upon his head...


The word of God to Samuel had been the command to annoint Saul as king of Israel. That was the word. Samuel now shows the word to Saul.
How does he show the word? By bringing it into being, into physical reality - by performing that which expresses what the word contains.

This is exactly the answer to the question of how a spoken word 'came' (appeared)' in a vision (as is so frequently mentioned in the Old Testament).
All that was necessary was for the prophet to be shown in a vision the events which the utterance of God contained, to be shown a visual representation of the word of God.

The word of God is here almost completely personified elliptically, and is spoken of as God Himself, but it is clear that this word is the Divine utterance, which does not become a reality until a later date

#3 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:24 AM

In fact this is precisely how Scripture describes the process:

Jeremiah 1:
11Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.


It should be obvious that the word of God here is an utterance which is directing Jeremiah towards a vision which is expressing the prophecy.
The very next verse emphasizes again the fact that God's spoken word is described as His expressed will:

12Then said the LORD unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I will hasten my word to perform it.


Again, the word of God is here almost completely personified elliptically, and is spoken of as God Himself, but it is clear that this word is the Divine utterance, which will not become a reality until a later date

#4 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:24 AM

How about another text:

1 Kings 6:
11And the word of the LORD came to Solomon, saying,
12Concerning this house which thou art in building, if thou wilt walk in my statutes, and execute my judgments, and keep all my commandments to walk in them; then will I perform my word with thee, which I spake unto David thy father:


So the word of God comes to Solomon, but he is told that it will be performed conditionally, at a later date, just as the same word came to David, who was likewise told that this word would be performed conditionally, at a later date.

Again, the word of God is here almost completely personified elliptically, and is spoken of as God Himself, but it is clear that this word is the Divine utterance, which will not become a reality until a later date

#5 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:24 AM

What about this passage?

Hosea 1:
1The word of the LORD that came unto Hosea, the son of Beeri, in the days of Uzziah, Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash, king of Israel.


The word here - what is it? The pre-incarnate Christ? Yes or no? What does the next verse say?

2The beginning of the word of the LORD by Hosea.


Why does it say this? Because what came to Hosea was the spoken word of God, the Divine utterance, which was then expressed by an agent, Hosea.
Thus we find that this is the word of the LORD, but it is by Hosea, who is the agent of the word.

#6 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:25 AM

The RSV (a highly conservative trinitarian translation), thus translates this verse:

2 When the Lord first spoke through Hosea...


Which is exactly the role of Christ himself:

Hebrews 1:
1God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
2Hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son...


Christ is the agent of the Divine word, and the embodiment of its message. He was the word made flesh in this way.

#7 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:26 AM

Now for John 1:1-10:

The text is parenthesized from verse 6 to verse 13, thus:

1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
2The same was in the beginning with God.
3All things were made by it; and without it was not any thing made that was made.
4In it was life; and the life was the light of men.
5And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.


(Verses 6-13 in parentheses)

14And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.


This speaks of the logos. The verses contained within the parentheses speak of John and Christ, the forerunner of the Messiah, and the Messiah himself:

6There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.
7The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.
8He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

9That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.
10He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
11He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

12But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:  
13Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.



#8 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:26 AM

There is an obvious parallel here in John 1:3-5 and John 1:10 which makes perfect sense in Biblical theology, but which is redundant confusion for the trinitarian dogma.

The word of God and its operation is described, and then an excursus follows which represents Christ as the embodiment of the word. Everything which the logos had done previously, Christ was to reflect in his own work.

Thus the logos:

3All things were made by it; and without it was not any thing made that was made.

4In it was life; and the life was the light of men.

5And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.


All talking of the Logos. But then verse 6 commences the parenthesis, and speaks of Christ, the Logos manifest, the Logos made flesh (as it is ultimately described).

Christ came to do, in the world, everything which the Logos had done before the world:

9That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

    Parallel: 4In him was life; and the life was the light of men

10He was in the world, and the world was made by him...

    Parallel: 3All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made

10-11...and the world knew him not.  He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

    Parallel: 5And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not



#9 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:27 AM

The text says this of the Logos:

- The Logos made all things

- In the Logos was light

- The light shined in the darkness and the darkness knew it not

...But it says this of Christ:

- Christ was in the world, and the world was made by him - the Logos preceded the world, but the world into which Christ came preceded Christ.

- Christ is the Light - whereas the light was in the Logos

- He came unto his own, and his own received him not - if Christ was God, how could he be said to come unto his own?

It is not enough to try and avoid this by saying 'Christ came as a human', because prior to the 'Incarnation' (to accept the Incarnation for the sake of the argument), he was not a human. The trinitarian cannot say that Christ came unto his own, if he was not coming unto those who are like him prior to the 'Incarnation'.

#10 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:27 AM

The logos is last spoken of prior to the parenthesis in verse 4, and is then referred to again in verse 14.

Thus:

4In it was life; and the life was the light of men.

14And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.


That the word was made flesh is a critical passage which is far too often overlooked completely.

If the logos became flesh, then it was no longer logos. It is impossible to place any other construction on this simple phrase.
Examples of this principle follow:

Matthew 13:
31Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:
32Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.

Mark 4:
31It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, is less than all the seeds that be in the earth:
32But when it is sown, it groweth up, and is made greater than all herbs, and shooteth out great branches; so that the fowls of the air may lodge under the shadow of it.


The phrase 'becometh a tree' in Matthew, and 'is made greater' in Mark is precisely the same grammatical phrase as is used in John 1:14, where the logos was made flesh. Common sense tells us that this demonstrates a complete alteration from one entity to another. The mustard seed cannot ‘become greater than all herbs’ whilst remaining ‘less than all the seeds that be in the earth', nor can it 'become a tree', whilst remaining 'a grain of mustard seed'.

The trinitarian attempts to interpret 'the logos was made flesh' as 'the logos added flesh nature to his current Divine nature', but this not only wrests the text beyond belief, it is impossible to sustain grammatically (not to mention logically).

The result of this is the curious doctrine that Christ was '100% Divine', whilst being at the same time '100% man'. Not only does this require a unique definition of '100%' (a definition which defies imagination and beggars sanity), it cannot be applied consistently.

Are we to believe that the mustard seed was '100% mustard seed' whilst being at the same time '100% tree'? Can we possibly claim that the mustard seed was '100% less than all the seeds' whilst being '100% greater than all herbs'? This is madness.

#11 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:27 AM

What of the 'world' in verse 10?

- The first world of verse 10 is a world into which Christ came

- The second is one which was 'ginomai' through Christ

- The third is one which rejected him

It is inconceivable that they could all refer to the same 'world'.

#12 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:28 AM

How shall we interpret this word 'world'?

- The literal creation

- An established order of things

- The human race generally

- The body of believers

- The body of unbelievers

Can we apply even one of these definitions consistently to every instance of the word 'world' here in verse 10?

#13 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:28 AM

Let's see if the literal creation can be pressed into trinitarian service:

10He was in the literal creation, and the literal creation was made by him, and the literal creation knew him not.

That tries hard to make sense, and reads well at first - until the last clause.

The inclusive nature of the literal creation is at least consistent with the text in the first two clauses, but inconsistent in the last, for we know that there were some in the literal creation who knew Christ, and we are specifically told this in verses 11-12. The main problem for you, of course, is that the Bible tells us that the literal physical creation was the work of the Father, whilst the trinitarian ignores this and says it was the work of the son.

#14 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:29 AM

What if we interpret the world as the human race generally, and again attempt to interpret the world consistently with one meaning:

10He was in the human race, and the human race was made by him, and the human race knew him not.


Again, we encounter precisely the same difficulty as with the interpretation 'the literal creation'. This does not meet the case.

#15 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:31 AM

What if we interpret the world as believers only, and again attempt to interpret the world consistently with one meaning:

10He was among the believers, and the believers were made by him, and the believers knew him not.


This fails patently. We could do the same for the body of unbelievers, and would encounter the same problems.

#16 Fortigurn

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:32 AM

The one meaning which can be applied consistenly, of all the definitions we have at our disposal, is 'the established order of things' - and even this is a stretch.
I would not argue for this definition to be applied unilaterally myself.

The reading which is true to the text requires that the meaning of at least two of the instances of the word 'world' in this verse must be different.

I read the first as either the literal creation or the established order of things - Christ entered the world, or the established order of things. I doubt that trintarians will take issue with this.

I read the second as making of a new order of things. This is the one with which trintarians will take issue.

I read the third as those individuals within the established order of things who did not believe. I doubt trintarians will take issue with this.




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