“Theology of God: Biblical, Chalcedonian Trinitarianism and Christology”

“Theology of God: Biblical, Chalcedonian Trinitarianism and Christology” October 17, 2012
Cover (551x833)
[156 pages; completed on 14 November 2012 and published at Lulu on 15 November 2012]

[cover design by Dave Armstrong]

 — For purchase, go to the bottom of the page —


Dedication

To the evangelical Protestant “cult watchers” and “cult researchers” (especially the late Dr. Walter Martin): among whom I first began utilizing the Bible in order to refute non-trinitarian heresies such as Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormonism, Unitarianism, Christian Science, and the United Pentecostal Church, way back in 1981. May your “tribe” increase and flourish.

Introduction

The doctrine of God remains as supremely important as ever. If we don’t contend for the correct, orthodox, historical teachings of the Christian, Catholic Church: famously formulated at the Council of Chalcedon in 451 (hence my subtitle), why should we spend time defending any theological doctrines?

We can’t afford to get this wrong: our very souls depend on it. St. Paul rebuked the Corinthians early in Church history: “For if some one comes and preaches another Jesus than the one we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you submit to it readily enough” (2 Corinthians 11:4).

Surely, denial of the deity or divinity of Christ and of the Holy Trinity were among the falsehoods condemned by the Apostle Paul as “doctrines of demons” (1 Timothy 4:1). We need to know the biblical basis for these beliefs, and what the Church has taught through the centuries (the “orthodox” theology of God), in view of historic heresies and recent fashionable nonsense such as open theism and process theology.

As is frequently the case in my books, my overwhelming emphasis will be on biblical argumentation: particularly a listing of many scores of relevant passages (systematic theology). The power of the argument for the orthodox theology of God increases exponentially in a cumulative fashion, the more these passages and cross-references are known and understood.

Additional material will attempt to explain these doctrines in laymen’s terms, so that, by the aid of this book, soaked with Scripture, anyone should be able to defend the biblical truths of the Holy Trinity and Jesus as God the Son: the incarnate God.


Table of Contents

Dedication [read above]
Introduction [read above]

I. Orthodox Catholic, Biblical Christology: A Theological Primer

II. A Definition of the Trinity: The Athanasian Creed

III. Jesus is God: Biblical Proofs

1. Direct Statements of Jesus’ Equality with God the Father [read extensive excerpt on Facebook]
2. Creator
3. Eternal and Uncreated
4. Worshiped
5. Omnipotent (All-Powerful)
6. Omniscient (All-Knowing) [read on Facebook]
7. Omnipresent (Present Everywhere)
8. Forgives Sins in His Own Name
9. Receives Prayer
10. Sinless and Perfectly Holy [read on Facebook]
11. Called Lord (Kurios) and God (Theos)
12. 50 Descriptions Applied Both to YHWH and Jesus [read 15 of them on Facebook]
13. Image of the Invisible Father
14. Primacy of the Name of Jesus
15. Claims to be the Messiah (Christ)
16. YHWH, the Messiah, and Jesus: Six Parallel Attributes
17. 50 Old Testament Messianic Prophecies Fulfilled
18. Jesus’ Subjection (as Messiah) to the Father

IV. The Holy Trinity: Biblical Proofs

1. The Unity of God and Monotheism
2. 40 Passages with All Three Divine Persons
3. The Holy Spirit: 40 Personal Attributes
4. Deity of the Holy Spirit: Direct Biblical Evidence
5. 12 Descriptions Applied to All Three Divine Persons
6. Circumincession / Perichoresis: the Indwelling of the Three Persons in One Another

V. Is Christ’s Knowledge Limited? Some Proposed, Supposed Exegetical “Difficulties” Examined

VI. Impeccability: Could Jesus Have Possibly Sinned or Succumbed to Temptation?

VII. Biblical Evidence Against Monothelitism (the Denial of Jesus’ Two Wills: Human and Divine)

VIII. Is God Outside of Time? [read excerpts on Facebook]

IX. God’s Immutability: Can God Change His Mind?

X. The Simplicity and Self-Sufficiency of God

XI. Biblical and Patristic Evidence for Anthropomorphism and Anthropopathism (God Condescending to Human Limitations)

XII. Filioque: Does the Holy Spirit Proceed from the Son as Well as the Father?
PURCHASE INFORMATION

Paperback (List: $19.95 / 30% Lulu Discount: $13.97)
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 Updated on 12 Nov. 2015.
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  • Since the word cult comes from the Latin cultus "divine service", shouldn't a different word be used groups with divergent Christology? Like heresy, for instance? Every group is a cult in its own mind in the sense that it thinks it worships God properly, offers the correct divine service. The weirdo usage of the word cult in English to mean a group with non-standard Christology is really silly.

  • This is the word that the evangelicals use themselves. Since I was referring to them in the dedication, I used it. I put it in quotes and indicated that it was defined as we would define "heresy."

    But its not an entirely foreign usage, let alone "really silly." E.g., Modern Catholic Dictionary by Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J., gives as a secondary definition:

    "a particular religious group centered around some unusual belief, generally transient in duration and featuring some exotic or imported ritual and other practices."

  • Outside usage by the uneducated and illiterate Protestant rednecks the only two usages of the word cult that come readily to mind are scholars calling the priests "the temple cult" and referring to "the cult of Mary," in neither case is the word intended as a pejorative, although redneck Prots probably read it that way. Its a back idea to let illiterate Prots design your definitions. After all, if you did that, the word Sovereignty would mean micromanagement which it, of course, does not.

  • Sheer nonsense. Fr. Hardon was a Catholic scholar, and he contradicts you. There is a legitimate sociological use for the term in this fashion.

    Nor is your uncharitable characterization accurate. These are some of the most honorable and dedicated Protestants: fighting heresy and defending the Holy Trinity.

    No one has "designed" my definitions, as explained. My preferred term is "heresy."

  • Blessed Pope John Paul II used the word "cult" in this secondary sense in his apostolic exhortation, Ecclesia in America (22 January 1999):

    "Although the Second Vatican Council refers to all those who are baptized and believe in Christ as “brothers and sisters in the Lord”, (188) it is necessary to distinguish clearly between Christian communities, with which ecumenical relations can be established, and sects, cults and other pseudo-religious movements."

    http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/apost_exhortations/documents/hf_jp-ii_exh_22011999_ecclesia-in-america_en.html

  • Likewise, the Congregation for the Clergy: General Directory for Catechesis (approved by Blessed pope John Paul II, 11 August 1997):

    "201. In a climate of cultural and religious relativism, and sometime because of the inappropriate conduct of Christians, a proliferation of "new religious movements" has occurred. These are sometimes called sects or cults but, because of the abundance of names and tendencies, are difficult to categorize in a comprehensive and precise framework. From available data, movements of Christian origin can be identified, while others derive from oriental religions, and others again appear to be connected with esoteric traditions. Their doctrines and their practices are of concern because they are alien to the content of the Christian faith."

  • What word does the Latin text use in those places?

  • I imagine cultus. But that's irrelevant, as words can have many meanings. Check out any dictionary to confirm that.

    This is true of Merriam-Webster Online. It gives five different uses for "cult." Its third is the one we are debating:

    "a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious; also: its body of adherents."

    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cult

  • The way "cult" was used in both citations I gave made it clear what was being discussed: "pseudo-religious" sects with non-Christian or anti-Christians elements or origins; "alien" to Christianity.

  • Truly, truly, Dave, you are too tuff!

    6:24 The Lord bless thee, and keep thee.
    6:25 The Lord shew his face to thee, and have mercy on thee.
    6:26 The Lord turn his countenance to thee, and give thee peace.
    Numbers 6

  • Your books are AWEsome, BTW…

  • Thank you kindly, and God bless ya back!