What is the nature of God?

this is the first video in a series on

what the pre nicing Christians believed

about the nature of God God simply means

deity but the nature of God is a bit

more complex than just saying God many

people refer to God as the Trinity

coined by Theophilus of antioch in

or the Godhead coined by John Wycliff in

to avoid any dogmas that may come

from these terms and to return to Paul’s

usage in Colossians the nature of

God will be called the divinity in this

series what have we heard about the

divinity how many members or persons are

in the divinity some responses might

include one God in three persons one God

in two persons one God in one person two

gods each in one person the pre nicing
Universal belief

Christians always had the same universal

belief that the divinity is one God in

three persons as far back as ad with

Ignatius the student of the Apostle John

this belief was taught Ignatius wrote

implying that Christ the Father and the

Holy Spirit were all equally God one

confusing thing is that when Christians

today say God that could be referring to

the divinity as a whole or specifically

to God the Father the same thing is true

with the writings of the early

Christians as well as the scriptures the

context always dictates whether God

means the divinity or the Father please

keep this in mind whenever you hear

anyone refer to God on this channel I

will try to use the father and the

divinity to differentiate between the

two proceeding through the pre Nicene
PreNicene Church

church let’s read a few quotations

regarding what they believed about the

divinity Clement of Rome a student of

Peter and Paul wrote before the end of

the first century have we not one God

and one Christ

is there not one spirit of grace poured

out upon us Justin Martyr wrote we

confess that we are atheists so far as

the gods of this Roman sort are

concerned but not with respect to the

most true God the father of

righteousness and temperance and the

other virtues who is free from all

impurity but both him and the son who

came forth from him and taught us these

things and the prophetic spirit we

worship and adore knowing them in reason

and truth Theophilus wrote the three

days which were before the creation of

the lights are types of the Trinity of

God and His Word and his wisdom a Fenig

Oris wrote Christians know God and his

logos what is the oneness of the son

with the father

what is the communion of the father with

the son what is the spirit what is the

unity of these three the spirit the son

the father and their distinction in

unity a Rania’s a student of Polycarp

who is a student of the Apostle John

wrote thus one God the Father is

declared who is above all and through

all and in all

the father is indeed above all and he is

the head of Christ but the word is

through all things and is himself the

head of the church while the Spirit is

in us all and he is the living water

which the Lord grants to those who

rightly believe in him and love him and

who know that there is one father who is

above all and through all and in us all

Clement of Alexandria prayed all of us

should in praise thank the alone father

and son son and father the son

instructor and teacher with the Holy

Spirit all in one in whom is all for

whom all is one for whom is eternity

whose members we all are

Tertullian wrote the mystery of the

economy of God is still guarded which

distributes the unity into a trinity

placing in their order the three the

Father the Son and the Holy Spirit

however there are three not in condition

but in degree not in substance but in

form not in power but in aspect yet of

one substance and of one condition and

of one power in as much as he is one God

from whom these degrees and forms and

aspects are reckoned under the name of

the Father and of the Son and of the

Holy Spirit how they are susceptible of

number without division will be shown as

our treatise proceeds Hippolytus wrote

the Blessed John in the testimony of his

gospel gives us an account of this

economy of God and acknowledges this

word as God when he says in the

beginning was the word and the Word was

with God and the Word was God

then if the Word was with God and was

also God what follows would one say he

speaks of two gods

I shall not indeed speak of two gods but

of one of two persons however and of a

third economy that is the grace of the

Holy Spirit for the father indeed is one

and there are two persons because there

is also a son and then there is the

third the Holy Spirit the father decrees

the word execute and the son is

manifested through whom the father is

believed on the economy of harmony is

led back to one God for God is one it is

the father who commands and the son who

obeys and the Holy Spirit who gives

understanding the father who is above

all and the son who is through all and

the Holy Spirit who is in all and we

cannot otherwise think of one God but by

believing in truth in father and Son and

Holy Spirit

Origen wrote

father generates an uncreated son and

brings forth a holy spirit not as if he

had no previous existence but because

the father is the origin and source of

the son or Holy Spirit Cyprien wrote the

Lord says I and the father are one and

again it is written the Father the Son

and the Holy Spirit and these three are


Dionysius of Alexandria wrote if from

the fact that there are three persons

they say that they are divided there are

three whether they who disagree like it

or not or else let them get rid of the

Divine Trinity altogether

Dionysius of Rome wrote therefore that

admirable and divine unity must neither

be separated into three divinities but

we must believe on God the Father

omnipotent and on Christ Jesus his son

and on the Holy Spirit

moreover that the word is United to the

God of all because he says I and the

father are one and I am in the father

and the father is in me

thus doubtless will be maintained in its

integrity the doctrine of the Divine

Trinity and the sacred announcement of

the monarchy Tertullian probably wrote

the most about the divinity and how

there are three persons in one God he

made the following illustration to help

people understand it

comparing the divinity to the Sun and

its light to the spring and it’s River

and to the parts of a tree God sent

forth the word as the Paraclete also

declares just as the root puts forth the

tree and the fountain the river and the

Sun the rain for these are emanations of

the substances from which they proceeded

indeed I shall not hesitate to call the

tree the Sun or the offspring of the

root and the river of the fountain and

the ray of the Sun because every

original source is apparent and

everything which issues from the origin

an offspring much more is this true of

the Word of God who is actually received

as his own particular designation the

name of son but still the tree is not

severed from the root nor the river from

the fountain nor the ray from the Sun

indeed nor is the word separated from

God therefore following the form of

these analogies I confess that I call

God and His Word the father and his son

too for the root and the tree are

distinctly two things but correlative

Lee joined the fountain and the river

are also two forms but indivisible so

likewise the Sun and the Ray are two

forms but coherent ones everything which

proceeds from something else

must needs be second to that from which

it proceeds without being separated on

that account however where there is a

second there must be two and where there

is a third there must be three now the

spirit indeed is third from God and the

son just as the fruit of the tree is

third from the root or as the stream out

of the river

is third from the fountain or as the

apex of the ray is third from the Sun

however nothing is alien from that

original source from where it derives

its own properties in like manner the

Trinity flowing down from the father

through intertwined and connected steps

does not at all disturb the monarchy of

God well at the same time it guards the

state of the economy of God this is not
Common scriptures

the end of what the pre Nisan Christians

want to tell us the next two videos will

go into more detail showing how the

doctrine of one God in three persons is

the only way to describe the divinity

finally let’s look at some common

scriptures the pre Nisan Christians used

to explain the divinity firstly and most

importantly they relied on Matthew

this verse was a big deal to them and

had practical applications to their

teachings on the

divinity go therefore and make disciples

of all nations baptizing them in the

name of the Father and of the Son and of

the Holy Spirit in the beginning was the

word and the Word was with God and the

Word was God he was with God in the

beginning the father and I are one yet

for us there is one God the Father all

things are from him and we exist for him

and there is one Lord Jesus Christ all

things are through him and we exist

through him the divinity is such an

endless mystery for humans to understand

all we can do is scratch the surface I

mean what could be explained in a

minute video please continue this series

to learn more I invite you to watch the

next couple videos where we will discuss

what early Christianity had to say about

the person or persons of God blessings

and so forth

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