Author Topic: Jesus & The Trinity  (Read 717 times)

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Offline JamesR

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Jesus & The Trinity
« on: August 13, 2013, 03:55:00 PM »
Well after reading the Gospel of John, I've developed some questions relating to the whole Christology Trinity thing that are confusing to me. First, if Jesus is fully God, then why does He pray to God constantly? I know that the Father and the Son are two distinct persons, yet, we also state that they are fully one united, so it becomes rather confusing, leading us to the conclusion that Jesus was praying to Himself, which, makes no sense. In fact, I know this is why many Muslims and restorationists reject the Trinity and Divinity of Jesus.

What does Jesus mean when He says "I can do nothing by myself," and "I come to please Him who sent me"? If Jesus is fully God, then how can He do nothing by Himself and how can He be sent by anyone?

I don't see how one could understand this while still adhering to the Trinity and Divinity of Jesus without resorting to the ultra Nestorian Protestant view that "Jesus was merely setting an example," which, reduces everything He did and said to being mere rhetorical devices and acts.
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Offline PoorFoolNicholas

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2013, 04:00:36 PM »
You are still under the impression that you are going to have communion with God through head knowledge. Faith is what is needed. All of these issues would cease to exist if you prayed regularly. How often do you pray the office? Or Vespers/Compline? Or from a prayer book? Or use a prayer rope?

If your answer to any of those questions is:

"Not very often..."

Then you will have a big problem with communing with God. And do you know what? The doubts will NEVER go away especially if you ignore prayer and fasts prescribed by the Church. Seriously, why not try your very best at a prayer rule and see how long these doubts stick with you.

"Cleanse your senses so that you may behold Christ..."
« Last Edit: August 13, 2013, 04:01:48 PM by PoorFoolNicholas »

Offline Nikolaos Greek

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2013, 05:08:51 PM »
First Jesus prays to his Father who is the reason of trinity. They are equal yet. Everything was created by the Father from the Son through the Holy Spirit.
The three persons can communicate between them. Didn't the father also at John answered to Christ saying that He glorified His name and will do it again?
Christ prayed to His father as human to teach us praying to Him. As for the saying that He can't do nothing... It is because the Father is the eternal source of the Godhead. It means He don't do anything that He wants that his Father does not want as the Holy Trinity has one will.
Father sent the Son because God wanted to proof how much he loved us. If a child sacrifice his parent is a smaller sacrifice than a parent sacrificing his child.
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Offline Theophilos78

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2013, 06:04:41 PM »
Well after reading the Gospel of John, I've developed some questions relating to the whole Christology Trinity thing that are confusing to me. First, if Jesus is fully God, then why does He pray to God constantly? I know that the Father and the Son are two distinct persons, yet, we also state that they are fully one united, so it becomes rather confusing, leading us to the conclusion that Jesus was praying to Himself, which, makes no sense.

The Father and the Son are ALWAYS distinct no matter that they are united, for this is a unity of essence, not of person. We could only conclude that Yeshua prayed to Himself only if we believed that the Father and Son became one single person, which is not an Orthodox doctrine.

What does Jesus mean when He says "I can do nothing by myself," and "I come to please Him who sent me"? If Jesus is fully God, then how can He do nothing by Himself and how can He be sent by anyone?

He means that He is not an independent deity. The Son is God because of the Father, deriving His divinity from Him.

You must also keep in mind that Yeshua was fully human. The Father is thus also the God of His humanity. This passage may offer some help:

During his earthly life Christ offered both requests and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death and he was heard because of his devotion. Although he was a son, he learned obedience through the things he suffered. (Hebrews 5:7-8)
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Offline Nicene

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2013, 03:15:47 AM »
We have to remember that while Christ became incarnate he did not merely have his divinity usurp a human body and his will remain totally divine while having a human body but he also assumed a human will. He took on humanity in its fullness that he had desires wants and needs insofar as his body and the will of that body was concerned (although without sin), that is why he said he didn't know the day or the hour, that is why saint Paul said he humbled himself not taking for granted his equality with God and become lower than the angels. Christ prayed to the father as a man that we might emulate him.

Thank you.

Offline Severian

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2013, 12:23:03 PM »
--Subscribed--
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Offline scamandrius

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2013, 12:27:24 PM »
We have to remember that while Christ became incarnate he did not merely have his divinity usurp a human body and his will remain totally divine while having a human body but he also assumed a human will. He took on humanity in its fullness that he had desires wants and needs insofar as his body and the will of that body was concerned (although without sin), that is why he said he didn't know the day or the hour, that is why saint Paul said he humbled himself not taking for granted his equality with God and become lower than the angels. Christ prayed to the father as a man that we might emulate him.



Are you suggesting that Christ's prayers only come as a result of his taking on human flesh?  Does that exclude Christ praying to Father in His [i.e. Christ's] Divinity as well?  that seems to be a Nestorian distinction. 
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Offline Severian

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2013, 12:33:32 PM »
We have to remember that while Christ became incarnate he did not merely have his divinity usurp a human body and his will remain totally divine while having a human body but he also assumed a human will. He took on humanity in its fullness that he had desires wants and needs insofar as his body and the will of that body was concerned (although without sin), that is why he said he didn't know the day or the hour, that is why saint Paul said he humbled himself not taking for granted his equality with God and become lower than the angels. Christ prayed to the father as a man that we might emulate him.



Are you suggesting that Christ's prayers only come as a result of his taking on human flesh?  Does that exclude Christ praying to Father in His [i.e. Christ's] Divinity as well?  that seems to be a Nestorian distinction. 
Not necessarily. The one Christ performs certain actions according to either His Divinity or humanity (or with the two in synergy, such as when He walks on water), but it is always one and the same hypostasis performing the same action. In the same way Christ feels pain His humanity and is impassible in His Divinity, likewise He worships the Father in His humanity and is worshipped as God in Divinity.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2013, 12:35:01 PM by Severian »
"These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." -Jesus Christ

May the 21 new martyrs pray for us all.

Please, remember me in your prayers

Lord, protect Egypt, Syria, Lebanon & Iraq.

Offline scamandrius

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2013, 12:45:09 PM »
We have to remember that while Christ became incarnate he did not merely have his divinity usurp a human body and his will remain totally divine while having a human body but he also assumed a human will. He took on humanity in its fullness that he had desires wants and needs insofar as his body and the will of that body was concerned (although without sin), that is why he said he didn't know the day or the hour, that is why saint Paul said he humbled himself not taking for granted his equality with God and become lower than the angels. Christ prayed to the father as a man that we might emulate him.



Are you suggesting that Christ's prayers only come as a result of his taking on human flesh?  Does that exclude Christ praying to Father in His [i.e. Christ's] Divinity as well?  that seems to be a Nestorian distinction. 
Not necessarily. The one Christ performs certain actions according to either His Divinity or humanity (or with the two in synergy, such as when He walks on water), but it is always one and the same hypostasis performing the same action. In the same way Christ feels pain His humanity and is impassible in His Divinity, likewise He worships the Father in His humanity and is worshipped as God in Divinity.

Severian, I would agree with your assessment, but  based on how Nicene asked the question, it seemed to me that he suggested that Christ praying was natural according to his humanity, but would be unnecessary according to his Divinity.  It seemed to me a Nestorian distinction, that's why I asked Nicene to clarify.
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Offline Severian

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2013, 12:53:39 PM »
^Very well. I too would like to hear what he has to say. It's been a while since I've had a good discussion about Christology.
"These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." -Jesus Christ

May the 21 new martyrs pray for us all.

Please, remember me in your prayers

Lord, protect Egypt, Syria, Lebanon & Iraq.

Offline William

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2013, 01:00:19 PM »
This is Orthodox theology 101. The Trinity's internal relationship is a dynamic one of love, not static, stoic and uncommunicative.
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline scamandrius

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2013, 09:03:00 PM »
This is Orthodox theology 101. The Trinity's internal relationship is a dynamic one of love, not static, stoic and uncommunicative.

Not everyone passes Orthodox Theology 101 the first time.
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Offline William

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2013, 09:59:08 PM »
This is Orthodox theology 101. The Trinity's internal relationship is a dynamic one of love, not static, stoic and uncommunicative.

Not everyone passes Orthodox Theology 101 the first time.

Maybe I'm off base here, but I just think that adult converts should know answers to basic and common questions like "Why did Jesus pray to God if He is God?" before being received.
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline scamandrius

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2013, 10:11:03 PM »
^Maybe you should be put in charge of authoring exams for adult converts to make sure they have the basics, right?

Do you have this same attitude towards everyone who, in your mind, posts a theological question here on oc.net where the answer should be a given?
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Offline William

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2013, 10:14:22 PM »
^Maybe you should be put in charge of authoring exams for adult converts to make sure they have the basics, right?

Do you have this same attitude towards everyone who, in your mind, posts a theological question here on oc.net where the answer should be a given?

Maybe we should just skip catechesis altogether. No need to have any sort of understanding of the faith before joining it, apparently.
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline scamandrius

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2013, 10:21:36 PM »
Maybe you should write personally to this person's priest and call him out on preparing adult catechumens so poorly and use JamesR's post as the evidence. Better yet, write to his bishop!  I'm sure JamesR will be anathematized in no time.  I'll also forward to you all of my stupid posts (all 4,678 or so of them) so you can write to my priest and my bishop and get me banned too.

And while we're at it, why do you not hold the same standard for adult cradles? 

I seek the truth by which no man was ever harmed--Marcus Aurelius

Those who do not read  history are doomed to get their facts from Hollywood--Anonymous

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Offline William

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #16 on: August 14, 2013, 10:27:26 PM »
Maybe you should write personally to this person's priest and call him out on preparing adult catechumens so poorly and use JamesR's post as the evidence. Better yet, write to his bishop!  I'm sure JamesR will be anathematized in no time.  I'll also forward to you all of my stupid posts (all 4,678 or so of them) so you can write to my priest and my bishop and get me banned too.

And while we're at it, why do you not hold the same standard for adult cradles? 

Have you read James' posts? He definitely should be anathematized by any reasonable standard. He spits on icons and self-identifies as someone who hates God.

Anyway, I don't know what you're trying to accomplish by being a white knight here. I know James better than anyone else on this forum and am pretty good friends with him. I can guarantee you that he isn't going to be driven to the brink of despair or despondency by what I've said in this thread.

And who says I don't hold the same standards for cradles?
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline scamandrius

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #17 on: August 14, 2013, 10:43:19 PM »
Maybe you should write personally to this person's priest and call him out on preparing adult catechumens so poorly and use JamesR's post as the evidence. Better yet, write to his bishop!  I'm sure JamesR will be anathematized in no time.  I'll also forward to you all of my stupid posts (all 4,678 or so of them) so you can write to my priest and my bishop and get me banned too.

And while we're at it, why do you not hold the same standard for adult cradles? 

Have you read James' posts? He definitely should be anathematized by any reasonable standard. He spits on icons and self-identifies as someone who hates God.

Anyway, I don't know what you're trying to accomplish by being a white knight here. I know James better than anyone else on this forum and am pretty good friends with him. I can guarantee you that he isn't going to be driven to the brink of despair or despondency by what I've said in this thread.

And who says I don't hold the same standards for cradles?

He should be anathematized?  For all his faults, that decision IS NOT YOURS!  Who do you think you are?  I've taken JamesR to task for many things, but never have I even hinted that he should be anathematized.  And this whole tangent isn't even about him..it's about you being a jerk and handing down ecclesiastical punishments which is far outside your purview.

You didn't mention cradles so I asked.

I'm done with this.
I seek the truth by which no man was ever harmed--Marcus Aurelius

Those who do not read  history are doomed to get their facts from Hollywood--Anonymous

What earthly joy remains untouched by grief?--St. John Damascene

Offline William

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #18 on: August 14, 2013, 10:47:34 PM »
Maybe you should write personally to this person's priest and call him out on preparing adult catechumens so poorly and use JamesR's post as the evidence. Better yet, write to his bishop!  I'm sure JamesR will be anathematized in no time.  I'll also forward to you all of my stupid posts (all 4,678 or so of them) so you can write to my priest and my bishop and get me banned too.

And while we're at it, why do you not hold the same standard for adult cradles? 

Have you read James' posts? He definitely should be anathematized by any reasonable standard. He spits on icons and self-identifies as someone who hates God.

Anyway, I don't know what you're trying to accomplish by being a white knight here. I know James better than anyone else on this forum and am pretty good friends with him. I can guarantee you that he isn't going to be driven to the brink of despair or despondency by what I've said in this thread.

And who says I don't hold the same standards for cradles?

He should be anathematized?  For all his faults, that decision IS NOT YOURS!  Who do you think you are?  I've taken JamesR to task for many things, but never have I even hinted that he should be anathematized.  And this whole tangent isn't even about him..it's about you being a jerk and handing down ecclesiastical punishments which is far outside your purview.

You didn't mention cradles so I asked.

I'm done with this.

I never handed down an ecclesiastical punishment. Get a grip.
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline Nicene

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2013, 02:44:42 AM »
We have to remember that while Christ became incarnate he did not merely have his divinity usurp a human body and his will remain totally divine while having a human body but he also assumed a human will. He took on humanity in its fullness that he had desires wants and needs insofar as his body and the will of that body was concerned (although without sin), that is why he said he didn't know the day or the hour, that is why saint Paul said he humbled himself not taking for granted his equality with God and become lower than the angels. Christ prayed to the father as a man that we might emulate him.



Are you suggesting that Christ's prayers only come as a result of his taking on human flesh?  Does that exclude Christ praying to Father in His [i.e. Christ's] Divinity as well?  that seems to be a Nestorian distinction.  

No, but it may be a result of his human will that Christ prayed in such a manner, clearly we are to emulate him. Am i suggesting there is a Christ who is always in communion with the father and a Jesus who is not always in communion with the father? No, there is Jesus the Christ who has two wills and one aspect of his human will was to pray in such a manner. I am of course open for correction if I have somehow misunderstood this doctrine.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 02:46:38 AM by Nicene »
Thank you.

Offline Gamliel

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #20 on: August 15, 2013, 10:30:06 AM »
I think Jesus also prayed to the Father to set an example.  If we are hungry, we cannot just speak a work and turn stones to bread, so Jesus taught us to rely on God.

Offline Nikolaos Greek

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Re: Jesus & The Trinity
« Reply #21 on: August 15, 2013, 02:51:17 PM »
Well I agree with Gamliel.
God is Love.
Ό Θεός ἀγάπη ἐστί.
There is no luck, there is no fate. There are always two ways. One is God's and one is devil's. And in each step of your life you have to pick one, always.