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Harlot of Babylon According to Irvin Baxter; Trinity and Oneness, Part 1 of 12 Parts
by Karl Kemp
2/05/2016 / Bible Studies
All quotations were taken from the New American Standard Bible, 1995 edition, unless otherwise noted. Sometimes I make comments in the middle of quotations using brackets [ ] or [[ ]] to make them more obvious. I am using straight quotation marks ("), hyphens (-) instead of dashes, and a few other things like this because some of the internet sites where I post these articles require it. Also they don't allow footnotes. Cf., e.g., means "compare, for example."
CONTENTS OF THIS PAPER:
INTRODUCTION...... 4 (These page numbers go with the complete edition of this paper.)
I'll Quote a Little from what Baxter Says Under the Heading "The Mother of Harlots" on page 137...... 6
Deuteronomy 6:4...... 7, 18, 28
I'll Include Some Excerpts from under Baxter's Heading "The Judgment of the Great Whore" (pages 136, 137)...... 9
Some Comments Regarding Baxter's Last Sentence that Contains Several Errors (I'll quote Baxter's last sentence: "As a result, at the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, the Roman Catholic Church changed the mode of baptism that had always been used by the church from baptizing people 'in the name of Jesus Christ' to 'Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.' ") This double bracket continues for twelve paragraphs. I quote from David K. Bernard in these comments. After the double bracket I'll continue to quote from Baxter...... 10
Some More Comments in Another Double Bracket (Ten Paragraphs) that Responds to what Baxter Has Wrongly Said Regarding the Viewpoint of the Apostles and Early Christian Church. Then I'll continue to quote from Baxter....... 15
Some More Comments Regarding Baxter's Statement that as a Result of Adopting the Doctrine of the Trinity "at the Council of Nicea...[they] changed the mode of baptism that had always been used in the church from baptizing people 'in the name of Jesus Christ' to 'Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,' "...... 18
Some Excerpts that Deal with Water Baptism from "A Dictionary of Early Christian Beliefs: A Reference Guide to More Than 700 Topics Discussed by the Early Christian Fathers" by David W. Bercot, editor (Hendrickson Publishers, 1998)...... 21
One of the Books I Read in Preparing to Write this Paper was "Decoding Nicea" by Paul F. Pavao (published by The Greatest Stories Ever Told, 2011, 2014). I'll include some excerpts from this book that deal mostly with the Council of Nicea...... 23
Another book that I purchased and read in preparing to write this paper is "The Trinity: How Not to be a Heretic" by Stephen Bullivant (Paulist Press, 2015), 121 pages. I'll include some excerpts...... 26
I'll Quote Two Passages (Deuteronomy 6:4 and Isaiah 9:6) from my Paper "More on the Trinity: Some Key Passages from the New Testament Where We See the Full Deity and Preexistence of God the Son with God the Father and Some Key Bible Passages Used to Teach a Oneness View of God" (33 Pages) under the heading "Some Key Bible Passages Used to Teach a Oneness View of God."...... 29
Deuteronomy 6:4...... 30
A Better Way to Interpret Deuteronomy 6:4...... 32
Isaiah 9:6...... 34
WHERE WE ARE GOING WITH MOST OF THE REST OF THIS PAPER...... 37
JOHN 1:1-18...... 38
JOHN 8:58 (WITH 8:57, 59)...... 47
JOHN 17:1-5...... 48
PHILIPPIANS 2:5-11...... 51
COLOSSIANS 1:15-17...... 56
HEBREWS 1:1-3...... 58
I'M GOING TO QUOTE WHAT I HAVE IN MY PAPER "MORE ON THE TRINITY" UNDER THE HEADING "SOME KEY PASSAGES WRONGLY USED TO TEACH A ONENESS VIEW OF GOD."...... 59
FIRST I'LL LIST AND QUOTE AND BRIEFLY DISCUSS SOME VERSES FROM THE GOSPEL OF JOHN THAT SHOW THAT GOD THE FATHER AND GOD THE SON ARE DISTINCT PERSONS (Some of these verses are much more important than others to show that the oneness viewpoint is wrong): JOHN 1:1, 2, 3, 4, 9-13, 14, 18, 30; JOHN 3:13, 17, 19, 31; JOHN 6:38, 46, 62; JOHN 7:33; JOHN 8:12-19; JOHN 10:15, 17, 18; JOHN 12:27, 28; JOHN 13:3, 31, 32; JOHN 14:16, 23, 26, 28; JOHN 15:1, 2, 8-10, 16, 21, 23, 24, 26; JOHN 16:3, 5, 15, 23, 24, 26-28; JOHN CHAPTER 17; JOHN 20:17 (Most of these verses are quoted and some of them are discussed.)...... 59
I'LL ALSO LIST AND QUOTE AND BRIEFLY DISCUSS SOME VERSES FROM THE GOSPEL OF JOHN THAT EXPLAIN WHAT JESUS MEANT WHEN HE SAID THAT HE AND THE FATHER ARE ONE, AND THAT HE WHO HAS SEEN HIM HAS SEEN THE FATHER, AND SIMILAR EXPRESSIONS: JOHN 5:17-33; 8:26-29; 12:49; and 14:24, 31...... 63
JOHN 10:30 (WITH JOHN 10:27-29) with John 17:21-23 and 10:36-38...... 65
JOHN 12:44, 45...... 67
JOHN 14:7, 9-11 (WITH JOHN 14:1, 2, 6)...... 68
ACTS 2:38; 8:16; 10:48; 19:5; 1 COR. 1:13 with MATT. 28:19 and BAPTIZING IN/INTO the NAME OF... ...... 70
I'LL QUOTE A SMALL PART OF WHAT GREGORY A. BOYD SAYS IN HIS CHAPTER 3, "IS JESUS HIS OWN FATHER?" ("Oneness Pentecostals & The Trinity" [Baker Books, 1992], 234 pages) ...... 74
1 CORINTHIANS 8:4 (WITH 8:5, 6)...... 76
COLOSSIANS 2:8-10 (WITH 2:16-23)...... 77
SOME EXCERPTS FROM "A DEFINITIVE LOOK AT ONENESS THEOLOGY: IN THE LIGHT OF BIBLICAL TRINITARIANISM" BY EDWARD L. DALCOUR (3rd edition, revised, updated & expanded; adapted from Ph.D. Thesis from North-West University; copyright 2011 by North-West University in South Africa; 215 pages)...... 81
SOME EXCERPTS FROM "ONENESS PENTECOSTALS & THE TRINITY" BY GREGORY A. BOYD (Baker Books, 1992, 234 pages)...... 83
SOME EXCERPTS FROM "THE FORGOTTEN TRINITY" BY JAMES R. WHITE (Bethany House Publishers, 1998, 224 pages)...... 86
THE INTERPRETATION OF REVELATION CHAPTERS 4 AND 5...... 91
A FEW BRIEF EXCERPTS FROM IRVIN BAXTER'S "WHAT DO YOU MEAN BORN AGAIN?"...... 105
I'LL ALSO GIVE A FEW BRIEF EXCERPTS FROM IRVIN BAXTER'S "WHY SO MANY CHURCHES AND WHICH IS RIGHT?"...... 106
INTRODUCTION. I'll borrow part of this Introduction from the first paper, "Critique of Irvin Baxter's 'Revelation Commentary.' " When I decided I should write the first paper on Irvin Baxter's teaching on the end times, I didn't have any idea that I would have a need to write this second paper, which is, I suppose, more important than the first paper. I have been reading Baxter's "EndTime" magazine for more than twenty years. (I haven't heard hardly any of his radio or TV broadcasts, but I did hear a few of the Praise the Lord broadcasts on the Trinity Broadcasting Network on the end times where he was one of the guests.) It is clear that his ministry is influencing large numbers of Christians around the world. As you can tell from my first paper, although I appreciate some of the things that Baxter teaches, I often disagree with his end-time teaching.
I didn't have any idea that I would need to add a second paper to point out some super-strong things that Baxter says against those who baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit in his "Revelation Commentary" and to discuss this oneness theology and the Trinity. I always knew that Baxter was associated with the United Pentecostal Church, International, which is oneness. I never have agreed with their oneness doctrine, which I consider to be a serious problem, but I believe that some of them are true Christians. (Based on what Baxter says, there is no way he could accept me, or a whole lot of believers like me, as a true Christian. I believe this is a serious problem!) Also, it takes a lot more than believing in the Trinity to make a person a true Christian. God is the Judge! HE determines who the true Christians are! We should be very careful about passing judgment for God regarding who the true Christians are!
I'm not attacking Baxter or anybody else, but I am trying to make it a top priority to be faithful to God and present the balanced truth of what the Bible teaches. I would like to be a blessing to Baxter and every Christian, and every non-Christian.
I have written four papers dealing with oneness theology that are available on my internet site (Google to Karl Kemp Teaching): "Who Do We Worship? (Jesus-only Worship Songs)"; "Who Do We Pray To?"; "The Name Yahweh and God the Father and God the Son: The Name Yahweh and a Listing of Some of the Large Number of Passages in the Hebrew Old Testament Where We Can See the Son of God along with God the Father"; and "More on the Trinity: Some Key Passages from the New Testament Where We See the Full Deity and Preexistence of God the Son with God the Father and Some Key Bible Passages Used to Teach a Oneness View of God." Essentially all of the last paper I just listed is included in this present paper.
It is significant that in all the years I have read Baxter's magazine (or heard him anywhere else) I don't believe he ever told his readers that they were not true Christians and were headed for God's eternal wrath and judgment if they were baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and didn't repent of that serious error (or if they didn't speak with tongues, etc.). (I assume that a large number of his readers/listeners believe in the Trinity.) He did, however, occasionally invite his readers to order his literature on how to be saved. I pretty much knew what that literature would say, and recently, in the process of writing this paper, I ordered that literature to confirm what it says. It presents the typical oneness (UPCI) viewpoint. I'll comment briefly on that literature at the end of this second paper.
I was very disappointed and somewhat shocked when I read Baxter's "Revelation Commentary," while preparing to write the paper on that commentary on the book of Revelation; the book of Revelation is of key importance for end-time prophecy. He strongly and clearly stated, for example, that Christians who baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are part of the whore (using the wording of the King James Version) of Babylon (I'll document this as we continue) and "In conclusion, God's anger toward Catholicism and other branches of false Christianity [which he says includes all the non-Roman Catholics who baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit] is best described with Revelation 19:3: 'And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke [the smoke of the "great whore" (Rev. 19:2 KJV)] rises up forever and ever' " (page 145). Baxter uses a lot of strong language. Using such strong language is dangerous if God doesn't agree with what you are saying. Baxter is totally and unequivocally writing off most of the Christians who live on the earth (and who have ever lived on the earth), including most evangelicals. Anyway, you cannot accuse Baxter of not saying what he believes in his "Revelation Commentary." I will be quoting some equally strong language from Baxter as we continue. I should point out that Baxter's eight page brochure that he makes available titled "Why So Many Churches And Which Is Right" also teaches that those who baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, etc. are part of the whore of Babylon.
What is my motivation for writing this second paper. In the first place I want to please God and teach the balanced truth of what the Bible teaches. As I mentioned, I am not attacking Irvin Baxter or his denomination. In fact I pray that this paper will prove to be a blessing to him and many oneness Christians. The more we understand, believe, and live the balanced truth of what the Bible teaches, the more God will be glorified and His people blessed. I also want to warn Christians who believe in the Trinity that Baxter's teaching in his "Revelation Commentary" is packed with oneness teaching. For one thing, his oneness viewpoint strongly influences the interpretation of many passages in the book of Revelation (and many passages throughout the New Testament and to some extent in the Old Testament).
I don't remember ever reading such strong language used against those who have been baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (who believe in the Trinity). Baxter almost makes it sound like they are God's number one enemy. According to his interpretation of the book of Revelation, God spends far more time discussing his wrath against those "Christians" who are (according to him) part of the whore/harlot of Babylon than he spends discussing His wrath against the devil or Antichrist or anybody else. I trust Baxter is sure he is being faithful to God with this emphasis: He is warning those who are part of Babylon the great whore/harlot to flee from her and join him and the oneness Christians.
It is one thing to believe we should hold a oneness view of God and baptize in Jesus' name. It is quite another thing to dogmatically insist that God's wrath is very strongly against all who baptize in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and that they are part of the whore/harlot of Babylon of the book of Revelation. (For one thing, oneness Christians typically spend a lot of time speaking of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, as the Bible does, but they insist that there is ultimately only one Person there and that in heaven that one Person will be Jesus, and that it is totally necessary that we be baptized in the name of that one Person, Jesus.) We certainly cannot have much respect for, or have much of a relationship with, those that we are sure are totally rejected by God and recipients of His intense wrath.
I'll Quote a Little from what Baxter Says under the Heading "The Mother of Harlots" on page 137: "If she [the Roman Catholic Church] is the mother of harlots, that means she has daughters who walk in her footsteps. Who are the daughters? ... When they [the Protestants, starting at the time of the Reformation] did not return to the original form of baptism [he means baptism in Jesus' name] nor to a belief in the first commandment, 'Hear O Israel: the Lord thy God is one Lord,' which Baxter is sure teaches a oneness view of God, they doomed themselves to become daughter harlots just like their mother. ...."
Baxter just quoted Deut. 6:4. His point, which is wrong, is that Deut. 6:4 proves a oneness view of God and that those who believe in the Trinity have doomed themselves to become daughter harlots (whores). Deuteronomy 6:4 wasn't dealing at all with, and was not at all intended to deny, the doctrine of the Trinity. God didn't choose to adequately or fully reveal that doctrine in the Old Testament. We'll discuss Deut. 6:4 as we continue and later in this paper (see the CONTENTS OF THIS PAPER).
EXODUS 20:3 and DEUTERONOMY 5:7 spell out the first commandment of the Ten Commandments: "You shall have no other gods before Me." It is significant that DEUTERONOMY 6:4 says essentially the same thing using different words: It says that Yahweh, the God of Israel (who is the Creator of, and God over, every being and thing that exists and the Bible is His book) is the only true God. (They didn't want to hear that in the ancient world any more than they want to hear that Jesus is the only way to the Father and to salvation in our day, but, according to God's Word, it is the truth.) The Mosaic Law in Ex. 20:3; Deut. 5:7; and Deut. 6:4 (and many other verses; I'll list some more later in this paper) was addressing the very serious problem of polytheism (that there are many Gods) that permeated the ancient world. (If polytheism was true, the God of the Bible was a liar. The Bible teaches that there are many other supernatural evil beings, starting with the devil, but there is only room for One who really is God, the One who created everything, for one thing.) These verses insist that the God of Israel is the only true God, but they have absolutely nothing to say against the triune view of the God of the Bible which is progressively revealed in the Old Testament and fully revealed in the New Testament.
I'll quote MATTHEW 22:35-38, which is quite relevant here: "One of them, a lawyer, asked Him [Jesus] a question, testing Him, (36) 'Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?' (37) And He said to him, ' "YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND." (38) This is the great and foremost [or "first"] commandment.' " Jesus was quoting from Deut. 6:5, the verse right after 6:4. What Jesus called "the great and foremost [or "first"] commandment here, as He quoted from Deut. 6:5, communicates the same truth contained in Ex. 20:3; Deut. 5:7; and DEUTERONOMY 6:4, but here instead of commanding His people not to worship other gods, He commands them to love God with everything in them. There was absolutely no room to love or serve any other god. But again, THERE IS NOTHING HERE AGAINST THE SUBSEQUENT AND CLEAR REVELATION OF THE ONE TRIUNE GOD (God the Father who is the One typically called God in the Bible with the Son and the Holy Spirit)!
Deuteronomy 6:4, as it is interpreted by oneness Christians, is extremely important for their oneness doctrine. Deuteronomy 6:4 is the number-one passage they typically use to try to prove their oneness doctrine. Monotheism (One God, the Triune God, the God of creation, the God of the Bible) is right, but that is very different than oneness, which teaches that there is only one Person and His name is Jesus. They interpret Deut. 6:4 to teach a oneness [one person] view of God instead of seeing that that verse is against polytheism (polytheism that permeated the ancient world), not at all against the triune God which is fully and clearly revealed as time goes on, especially in the New Testament.
Deuteronomy 6:4 and a few other verses is all that is needed to convince most oneness Christians that they are right, and then they close their minds. From that time on every other passage must be made to fit their oneness viewpoint, one way or another. ((Many, or most, Christians have wrongly closed their minds on many topics based on their understanding of a few verses. However, we must humble ourselves before God and seek Him for the balanced truth of what the Bible teaches on every topic, which includes making sure that we really understand the verses we are emphasizing. I don't believe there are any verses that teach a oneness view of God when they are rightly understood in their contexts.)) I am not suggesting that oneness Christians limit themselves to a few verses they think prove their viewpoint. Some of them, especially the scholars, discuss a large number of verses, and they make some valid points against some of the things said by some who believe in the Trinity, but I don't believe they have any passages that (when they are rightly understood) teach a oneness view of God. It is amazing how far oneness Christians (but this problem isn't limited to oneness Christians) can bend what many verses say to make them fit the doctrines they KNOW are true. (They often say that they KNOW they have the truth because God revealed it to them. Many think God revealed something to them when He didn't.) And like I mentioned, they typically got locked into that viewpoint based on very few verses. I admit that some erroneous (out of balance, overstated) teaching of some Trinitarians made/makes it easier to accept the oneness viewpoint, but that is no legitimate excuse. We desperately need the balanced truth of what the Bible teaches.
God's end-time judgment of Babylon the great harlot is so important that He devotes some three chapters of the book of Revelation to that judgment (cf. Rev. 14:8, 14-16; 16:18, 19; 17:1-19:6). (For some details see my paper on Rev. 14:6-19:21 that is on my internet site.) I believe Babylon the great harlot is a symbol for the world, whose God is the devil (2 Cor. 4:4). It embraces, for one super-important thing, all the things the devil uses to try to seduce mankind from worshipping God. (He has been all too successful, because of the sinfulness of mankind.) It includes all false religion, very much including false, apostate Christianity, and the occult. Those parts of the Roman Catholic Church and other Christian churches that are apostate and unfaithful to God and His truth and righteousness ARE PART OF Babylon the great harlot. Believing in the Trinity or baptizing in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit does NOT make a Christian part of the whore of Babylon. Yes, I am sure of that! What a serious charge to make! Many oneness Christians do not agree with Baxter on that point, or the point that Trinitarians cannot be saved unless they repent and become oneness Christians.
Babylon (the devil's city and worldwide kingdom) also includes all the other things (idols) the devil uses to seduce mankind from God, including money, fame, sexual sins, occupations, arts, sports, and living in excessive luxury - for one thing, the devil, who fell through pride, knows how to appeal to the pride of man, which is at the root of sin (along with unbelief). I am not suggesting, of course, that all of the things I just listed are sinful in themselves, but anything we live for in place of God becomes an idol. It seems that many people are willing to sell their soul for very little. The fact that this end-time judgment of Babylon is such a big part of God's end-time judgment of the world, along with verses like Rev. 17:5, 6, 18; 18:3, 11-24; 19:2, should suffice to demonstrate that Babylon includes a lot more that what Baxter thinks it includes. I'll quote Rev. 18:24: "And in her [in Babylon] was found the blood of prophets and of saints and OF ALL WHO HAVE BEEN SLAIN ON THE EARTH [my emphasis]."
I'll Include Some Excerpts from under Baxter's Heading "The Judgment of the Great Whore" (pages 136, 137): "God always referred to Israel's worship of nonexistent or false gods as spiritual whoredom. They turned quickly from the way in which their fathers walked, and disobeyed the commandments of the Lord. When did that happen to the Roman Catholic Church? IT HAPPENED WHEN THE DOCTRINE OF THE TRINITY WAS ADOPTED [my emphasis]. [Baxter seems to be obsessed with what he perceives to be the errors of the Trinity and being baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.] They decided there were three separate persons in the godhead, each of which was God. [[THOSE WHO BELIEVE IN THE TRINITY DO NOT BELIEVE IN "THREE SEPARATE PERSONS." There is a unity of essence between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit; they all partake of the essence of what it means to be God/deity, for one thing. I don't believe we have been given enough information (revelation) to fully understand the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and the relationship between the three Persons, but I don't see any difficulty in accepting this biblical doctrine. By the way, I am not saying that we have to use the word "person/Person," but I don't know of any better word to use. God is not at all limited to our vocabulary or our dimension. It seems clear to me that many Christians (very much including some who believe in the Trinity) confuse the issue when they tell us more than what God has clearly revealed. (This often happens through the philosophical speculation of men, and demons are happy to make their input whenever the doors are open to them.) WE NEED TO LIMIT OURSELVES TO WHAT THE BIBLE CLEARLY REVEALS!]] As a result, at the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, the Roman Catholic Church changed the mode of baptism that had always been used by the church from baptizing people 'in the name of Jesus Christ' to 'Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.'
[[Some Comments Regarding Baxter's Last Sentence that Contains Several Serious Errors (This double bracket continues for twelve paragraphs. I quote from David K. Bernard in these comments.): There are several serious errors in Baxter's last sentence, which we will discuss as we continue. The only thing right in the sentence is that the Council of Nicea took place in 325. For one thing, the early Christian writings before the Council of Nicea demonstrate that there was a whole lot of baptizing in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit taking place by Christians who believed in the Trinity. Baxter, and other oneness Christians, can easily verify this from one of the books written by the superintendent of the UPCI, a writer they can surely trust. The book is "Oneness and Trinity - AD 100-300 - The Doctrine of God in Ancient Christian Writings," by David K. Bernard. (This was an e-book, so I cannot give page numbers.) The book was published by Word Aflame Press (of the UPCI) in 1991. Bernard is well educated, including having a doctorate in law. He is totally biased to the oneness/modalistic viewpoint, but he had the integrity to make it clear in this book, for one thing, that there was a whole lot of baptizing in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit taking place in the years before Nicea.
Bernard's chapter 7 is titled "Early Trinitarians [Note that these dates are long before the Council of Nicea, AD 325]: Tertullian [about 160-230, who opposed Praxeas, who was the earliest modalist/oneness writer that I am aware of; he lived at the end of the second century and the beginning of the third century; modalists believed that the one person of God manifested himself in three different modes, like an actor wearing three different masks]; Origen [about 185-255], and Others." He included Clement of Alexandria (about 150-215); Hippolytus (about 170-236) who "vehemently opposed the modalist teacher Noetus, and he attacked the Roman bishops Zephyrinus and Callistus, accusing them of embracing modalism and bitterly impugning their character."; "Novatian [who died in 257] of Rome who was a vigorous opponent of Sabellius [another modalist; he went to Rome in the early third century]"; Cyprian (died 258); and he mentioned other Trinitarian writers from those years. How about those who taught oneness/modalism? That is the topic of his chapter 10, which we'll consider next. (The key names of the early teachers of modalism have already been mentioned in this paragraph.)
Bernard's chapter 10 is titled "Teachers of Modalism: Praxeas, Noetus, and Sabellius." Bernard points out that "Since none of the writings of the major teachers of modalism have survived, we must attempt to determine their views by reading the works of their opponents, a method that presents several difficulties." Starting in my next paragraph, I'll give a few excerpts from Bernard that tell a little about these oneness/modalistic teachers. Note the lateness of the dates for these teachers. As far as I can see that erroneous doctrine (oneness/modalism) didn't come on the scene until toward the end of the second century. It certainly didn't come from the apostles. (Bernard and the oneness Christians in general don't agree with my last two sentences, but based on what I have seen, all of the evidence, including the Bible and the early Christian writings confirms what I just said, and all of the Trinitarian writers I refer to in this paper are in agreement. This information strongly demonstrates that the oneness viewpoint is wrong.)
"According to Tertullian's report, Praxeas came from Asia Minor to Rome ABOUT 190 [my emphasis] and taught his doctrine there. The doctrine spread everywhere, including Carthage, and stirred up a great controversy. Under pressure, Praxeas supposedly signed a retraction, but the doctrine sprang up again about twenty years later, which caused Tertullian [who believed in the Trinity] to write his tract." "Our information about Noetus comes from Hippolytus [who believed in the Trinity]. Noetus was from Smyrna in Asia Minor, and he founded a theological school in Rome. His followers included Epigonus, Cleomenes, and Sabellius. Hippolytus bitterly charged the two Roman bishops after Victor [Victor was a Roman bishop] Zephyrinus (199-217) and Callistus (217-23) - with promoting the views of Noetus. Callistus excommunicated both Hippolytus and Sabellius." "Sabellius was apparently the most prominent modalist teacher.... ... Sabellius probably came from Libya. He apparently preached in Rome ABOUT 215 [my emphasis; like I mentioned note these late dates for those who taught modalism/oneness].... ...."
We will continue this discussion in Part 2 of this paper.
Copyright by Karl Kemp
http://www.karlkempteachingministries.com Karl Kemp worked as an engineer in the space field throughout the 60s. He became a born-again Christian in 1964. He received an MA in Biblical Studies in 1972. He has been a Bible teacher for 45 years. See the website for more info on his books, papers, etc.
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