I think that teaching has always been implied, that Jesus was, at the end of the day, just a very special angel, or really, The Most Specialist Angel, being the Son and the first thing created. It does make Jesus part of the angelic hieararchy, and does strip him of any notions of divinity.
Jesus no longer really "a god"?
That verse is considered by most scholars to be fake a later addition to back up the trinity.
The dubs used to worship Jesus up to 1959, and after that they never thought much of him even if they said He was someone of divine rank. To them jehovah is everything, Jesus is a very minor actor in the grand scheme of things.
In a way, the WTS argument here is similar to the trinitarian view...That Jesus is divine, yet he is distinguished from being "another deity" by the fact he is "closely associated with the Almighty God."...But they stop short of the logical conclusion that the "only true God", apart from which there is no deity, is therefore a term inclusive of Christ.
Ok yes you are people right.
Now check this out.
Let's take for e.g. someone's mother.
Now your mother could be:
A mother, a wife, a sister, an aunt, a friend, a cousin, a nurse, a teacher, a co-worker, a group member, a singer, a dancer......BUT SHE IS ONE PERSON.
In a way, the WTS argument here is similar to the trinitarian view...That Jesus is divine, yet he is distinguished from being "another deity" by the fact he is "closely associated with the Almighty God."...But they stop short of stating outright that the "only true God", apart from which there is no deity, is a term inclusive of Christ.
Debates and notions on the nature of Christ have always danced on the head of a pin. The JWs are hardly the only or the first people to reject the Trinity, and the arguments that raged in the early days of the Church were a lot of verbiage over a rather small set of Scriptures. As far as my reading of history goes, it really only became an issue as the need to centralize the Church made enforcing orthodoxy imperative. As to whether the first Christians had a Trinitarian view, I really doubt anyone can say. The beginnings are shrouded from us, but considering the inadequacy of JW "theology" in other areas, I wouldn't trust their scholarship on this issue as far as I could throw it.
It wouldn't surprise me at all if Jesus was thought of quite differently by the first generation of Christians. Perhaps he started out as a charismatic holy man (hardly uncommon, we even have such people in our times). Perhaps later, as legend outgrew the truth, it became important to give him aspects of the divine, to fulfill both the Messianic tradition and to make him more palatable, his words both real and alleged given some greater import because not only was he a spokesman of God, he was, in some formulation or another, actually God incarnate.
One thing is very certain, before the Christianization of Rome in the 4th century, the churches, to one extent or another, were largely self-governing. There was no proper orthodoxy, and it was ultimately only Imperial authority which gave early ecumenical councils like Nicea an important legal as well as spiritual force.
They don't appear anywhere before the late 4th century (in Latin), and only later made their way into Greek manuscripts (the oldest Greek manuscript which contains them is of the 11th century). Where did you get such info from?
Just see the footnotes in any recent Bible. A classic exposition of textual evidence can be read, for instance, in A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, by Bruce M. Metzger, United Bible Societies, 1971, p. 715-717.
Here's what I find rather pathetic reasoning.
How Much Was the Ransom?
ONE of the main reasons why Jesus came to earth also has a direct bearing on the Trinity. The Bible states: "There is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus, who gave himself a corresponding ransom for all."— 1 Timothy 2:5, 6 .
Jesus, no more and no less than a perfect human, became a ransom that compensated exactly for what Adam lost—the right to perfect human life on earth. So Jesus could rightly be called "the last Adam" by the apostle Paul, who said in the same context: "Just as in Adam all are dying, so also in the Christ all will be made alive." ( 1 Corinthians 15:22 , 45 ) The perfect human life of Jesus was the "corresponding ransom" required by divine justice—no more, no less. A basic principle even of human justice is that the price paid should fit the wrong committed.
If Jesus, however, were part of a Godhead, the ransom price would have been infinitely higher than what God's own Law required. ( Exodus 21:23-25 ; Leviticus 24:19-21 ) It was only a perfect human, Adam, who sinned in Eden, not God. So the ransom, to be truly in line with God's justice, had to be strictly an equivalent—a perfect human, "the last Adam." Thus, when God sent Jesus to earth as the ransom, he made Jesus to be what would satisfy justice, not an incarnation, not a god-man, but a perfect man, "lower than angels." ( Hebrews 2:9 ; compare Psalm 8:5, 6 .) How could any part of an almighty Godhead—Father, Son, or holy spirit—ever be lower than angels?
This from their web-site.
How dare these fools.
They are quick to quote apostate material to suit their agenda.
"The basic Greek word for "only-begotten" used for Jesus and Isaac is mo·no·ge·nes', from mo'nos, meaning "only," and gi'no·mai, a root word meaning "to generate," "to become (come into being)," states Strong's Exhaustive Concordance. Hence, mo·no·ge·nes' is defined as: "Only born, only begotten, i.e. an only child."—A Greek and English Lexicon of the New Testament, by E. Robinson.
The Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, edited by Gerhard Kittel, says: "[Mo·no·ge·nes'] means 'of sole descent,' i.e., without brothers or sisters." This book also states that at John 1:18 ; 3:16 , 18 ; and 1 John 4:9 , "the relation of Jesus is not just compared to that of an only child to its father. It is the relation of the only-begotten to the Father." "
they are however dishonest with their quotes as usual.Here's what's actually written.
Thayer's Lexicon (Help)
I wonder why the JW's don't use examples such as this .
Here Jesus is declared the Firstborn of every creature. What does this phrase mean? Firstborn is translated from the Greek word prototokos, and it simply means: first-born --first begotten. We also see that prototokos is a conjunction of two root words. Protos and tikto (tikto is it’s alternate). Protos simply means: foremost (in time, place, order or importance):--before, beginning, first (of all), former.
The second article is tikto which means: to produce (from seed, as a mother, a plant, the earth, etc.), literally or figuratively:--bear, be born, bring forth, be delivered, be in travail. Thus we see in these verses that Paul is telling us that Christ was ‘Begotten First or Born Before all creation’, because all of creation was created by God through Christ (Ephesians 3:9). This is also the explanation given to us concerning this verse in the Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon: “Christ is called, firstborn of all creation, who came into being through God prior to the entire universe of created things”. Wigram’s Greek Lexicon tells us the following: “Or it may be; born before all creation”. This truth is also testified to in Proverbs 8:24-25, “When there were no depths, I was brought forth (born); when there were no fountains abounding with water. Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth (born)” . Jamieson, Faussett and Brown Bible Commentary has this to add: “first-born of every creature-- (Heb_1:6), "the first-begotten": "begotten of His Father before all worlds" [Nicene Creed]… Translate, "Begotten (literally, 'born') before every creature," as the context shows, which gives the reason why He is so designated. "For," &c. (Col_1:16-17) [TRENCH]. Matthew Henry’s Commentary states the following: “He was born or begotten before all the creation, before any creature was made;” This also destroys the Jehovah Witnesses’ doctrine that Christ was the first created angel; for we see that Christ was the active agent in the creation of all things, both in heaven and in earth, including angels. And what of the following verse? Revelation 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
The word ‘Beginning’ is from the Greek Arche. Arche is some times translated power and principality. And it is thus here, for it declares Christ to be the "agent" or "efficient cause" of Creation. This perfectly fits our understanding that Christ is the agent through whom God has created all things, but we are told that Christ was brought forth in a very different manner, for he is called the ONLY BEGOTTEN (MONOGENES) OF GOD, a phrase that would be utterly inappropriate to apply to any created being.
easy there, corpie,
this could go on all day!
There are threads out there dedicated to each of those topics..perhaps you can start one.