The Trinity Delusion An exposť of the doctrine of the Trinity

1 John 5:20

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know Him who is true, and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.

Trinitarian Claim

Trinitarians claim this verse identifies Jesus as "the true God." They do this by insisting the antecedent to the word "this" is a reference back to "Jesus Christ" in the previous sentence.


The Claim vs. The Facts

The facts show quite clearly that the true God in this verse is the Father whom the Son reveals.


The Problems with the Trinitarian Claim

1. Houtos

The word translated as "This" is the Greek word houtos. The word "this" requires an antecedent. This word is used to refer to something which has been mentioned or will be immediately mentioned. An antecedent is a noun or noun phrase to which the word "this" is referring. Trinitarians are attempting to suggest that the nearest person mentioned in the preceding context is always the most likely antecedent to the word "This" (houtos). However, grammatically speaking, this Trinitarian claim is very disingenuous, and in their passion to promote Trinitarian doctrine, they are simply not being honest. In both English and Greek, the antecedent is not the nearest preceding word. The antecedent is rather the most recent subject under discussion. The most recent subject under discussion might be the last thing mentioned prior to the word "This" but it very commonly is not the last thing mentioned. And so Trinitarians are really resorting to wishful thinking and dishonest conduct for the sake of their doctrinal traditions.


2. The Ludicrous Implications of the Trinitarian Claim

The Trinitarian claim is that we should consider the nearest preceding word to "this" to be the antecedent to the word "This." Notice carefully what happens if we use the Trinitarian method in these two verses from John:

Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This (houtos) is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. 1 John 2:22.

For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This (houtos) is the deceiver and the antichrist. 2 John 1:7

Here are two passages, one from this selfsame letter of John, and one from his next letter. If we used the same Trinitarian line of reasoning for these two verses, we would need to conclude that the referent for the word "This" at 1 John 2:22 is the Christ and we would therefore have John saying that Christ is the antichrist and Christ denies the Father and the Son. We would also need to conclude at 2 John 1:7 that the referent for "This" is the flesh of Jesus and we would therefore have John saying that Jesus' flesh is the deceiver and the antichrist. The Trinitarian line of reasoning results in preposterous implications.


Analysis of the Facts

1. The Greek word alēthinos (ἀληθινός)

The Greek word for "truth" is alētheia. The Greek word for "true" is alēthēs and refers to something objectively true. The Greek word alētheuō means to tell the truth. The Greek word alēthōs is usually translated as "truly." The word alēthinos is used in a variety of ways in Scripture and essentially refers to something, or someone, as inherently true.

The following is a more literal translation:

"And we know that the Son of God comes and has given us understanding, to know the True One, and we are in the True one, in His son Jesus Christ. This is the True God and eternal life."

Basic reading comprehension should be enough for most folks to see that the True God is the Father. But apparently, basic reading comprehension doesn't work in Trinitarian world.


2. Basic Reading Comprehension

The truth of the matter only requires basic reading comprehension. Let us first ask, "Who is the True One?"

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know Him who is True, and we are in Him who is True, in His son Jesus Christ.

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know the True One, and we are in the True One, in His son Jesus Christ.

The True One has a son named Jesus Christ. Very obviously, the True One is the Father.

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know the True One, and we are in the True One, in His son Jesus Christ. This is the True God and Eternal Life.

The True God is the True One, and we are in the True One if we are in His son Jesus. The True One/True God is obviously the Father.


3. The Eternal Life

At John 17:3, Jesus is praying to the Father and he says, "THIS is Eternal Life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you sent."

Here Jesus tells us that eternal life is to know God the Father, the only True God. At 1 John 5:20, John is telling us the same thing - that the Son has come so that we might know the True One. The man Jesus is the way to the Father (John 14:6) and we must know Jesus to know the Father for Eternal Life. This is because the Eternal Life of God the Father is found in Jesus, the Resurrection and the Life.


4. The True God and Eternal Life

Once these facts are laid out before us, it is more than clear that the True One at 1 John 5:20 is the Father whom Jesus came to give us understanding so that we might know the Father for Eternal Life just as Jesus prayed at John 17:3. When John uses the word "This" he is referring to the True God and Eternal Life that Jesus makes known to us. The only True God is the Father as Jesus declared at John 17:3 and Eternal Life is to know the Father. "This" refers back to what Jesus has given us understand of and knowledge of: the Father, the only True God.

Compare the highlighted words in these two verses:

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know the True One, and we are in the True One, in His son Jesus Christ. This is the True God and Eternal Life.

Father.... This is Eternal Life, that they might know You, the only True God and Jesus Christ whom You sent.

Now compare these highlighted words:

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know the True One, and we are in the True One, in His son Jesus Christ. This is the True God and Eternal Life.

Father.... This is Eternal Life, that they might know You, the only True God and Jesus Christ whom You sent.

Now compare these highlighted words:

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know the True One, and we are in the True One, in His son Jesus Christ. This is the True God and Eternal Life.

Father.... This is Eternal Life, that they might know You, the only True God and Jesus Christ whom You sent.

Now compare these highlighted words:

And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we might know the True One, and we are in the True One, in HIS son Jesus Christ. This is the True God and Eternal Life.

Father .... This is eternal life, that they might know You, the only True God and Jesus Christ whom You sent.

It is really quite obvious isn't it? It should be clear to every honest person that the same idea is being presented in both of these verses. The Eternal Life of our God and Father is found in His Son. The Son makes the only True God known to us, that is, the Father. Since Eternal Life is to know the only True God our Father, John says, "This is the True God and Eternal Life."


Conclusion

If we set aside Trinitarian wishful thinking, it is quite clear that the antecedent to the word "This" is not Jesus. John is telling us how Jesus came so that we might know the True One. This is obviously a reference to the Father since we know the Father through Jesus who is the way to the Father. The word "This" refers to the True God who Jesus makes known to us, his God and Father. All the facts indicate that John is expressing the idea that the true God, the Father, is known through His Son Jesus. At John 17:3, Jesus tells us "this" is Eternal Life - to know the Father, the only True God. The same idea is being expressed at 1 John 5:20.


Last Revision/Update: March 23, 2016


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