1. Welcome to Baptist Board, a friendly forum to discuss the Baptist Faith in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to all the features that our community has to offer.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon and God Bless!

Featured The Holy Trinity in 1 John 5:7

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by SavedByGrace, Apr 28, 2021.

  1. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    “ὅτι τρεῖς εἰσιν οἱ μαρτυροῦντες εν τῷ οὐρανῷ, ὁ πατήρ, ὁ λόγος, καὶ τὸ Ἅγιον Πνεῦμα· καὶ οὗτοι οἱ τρεῖς ἕν εἰσιν”

    “For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one”

    Since 1881 and the Revised Version, this verse reads: “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες”, “For there are three that testify”. Which is continued in verse 8, “το πνευμα και το υδωρ και το αιμα και οι τρεις εις το εν εισιν”, “the Spirit and the water and the blood, and these three agree in one”

    It is generally argued, that because the textual evidence for this passage, especially in the Greek manuscripts, does not have the disputed words, that they do not belong to the Original Autograph of the Apostle John.

    The accepted reading for verse 7, “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες”, is a major problem with the Greek grammar. These words refer to the three witnesses in verse 8, “the Spirit and the water and the blood”. These nouns in the Greek are in the neuter gender. But the words, “τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες”, are in the masculine. Why is this? Some argue that this is used for “personification”, especially as the Holy Spirit is one of the Witnesses. This is incorrect. In verse 6, where John also mentions the “water, blood”, he then says, “And it is the Spirit that bears witness, because the Spirit is truth”. However, here John rightly writes, “το πνευμα εστιν το μαρτυρουν”, “the Spirit that bears Witness”, which is in the neuter gender. No one will doubt that the Person of the Holy Spirit is here meant, even though the neuter is used. This is because of the grammatical gender, that requires it. As Paul does in Romans 8:16, 26, “αυτο το πνευμα συμμαρτυρει”, literally, “The Spirit itself beareth witness with” (KJV), because of the neuter. Modern versions have rightly corrected this to, “The Spirit Himself bears witness with”. There is no reason whatsoever, for John to have written, “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες”, using the masculine, when the neuter (τρια εισι τα μαρτυρουντα) would agree with the neuter nouns used, as he has already done in verse 6. Put back the disputed words, where we have the two nouns, “ὁ πατήρ, ὁ λόγος”, (the Father, the Word), in the masculine gender, this problem no longer exists! Even though we still have the neuter “το πνευμα” (the Spirit), the two masculine nouns govern the gender of the words, “τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες”. There can be no grammatical problems in the Holy Bible, as it is the Inspired, Inerrant, Word of God. The verse 7 as accepted by most versions, makes the Bible inconsistent with the rules of Greek grammar.

    The Greek grammar problem continues in verse 8, with the reading, “και οι τρεις εις το εν εισιν”, “and the three agree in one”. How do we account for John’s use here, of the Greek definite article, “το”? It is clear here, that it is used retrospectively, which is for renewed mention. There is no problem when we read verse 7, “καὶ οὗτοι οἱ τρεῖς ἕν εἰσιν”, (and these Three are one), where we have “ἕν” (one) used a previous time, and the article in verse 8, is referring back to this use in 7. However, when these words in verse 7 are removed, there is a distinct problem with the Greek, as it stands in verse 8. Bishop Thomas Middleton, in his excellent work on the Greek Article, had this to say on the article in verse 8;

    “But the difficulty to which the present undertaking has directed my attention, is of another kind : it respects the Article in εις το εν in the final clause of the eighth verse : if the seventh verse had not been spurious, nothing could have been plainer than that το εν of verse 8, referred to hen of verse 7 : as the case now stands, I do not perceive the force or meaning of the Article” (The Doctrine of the Greek Article Applied to the Criticism and Illustration of the New Testament, page 441). Middleton did not accept verse 7 as genuine, but states the obvious difficulty in the Greek grammar, of verse 8, to which there is not answer, without the words in verse 7 restored.

    It should be noted, by those who do not know Greek grammar, that, because the “το εν” in verse 8, refers back to that in verse 7, that their “meanings” do not have to be identical, as Dr Plummer argues in the Cambridge Greek Testament. As Dr Green says in his grammar on “renewed mention”, “Sometimes the reference is implicit, the second expression, bearing the article, being equivalent to the former, though not identical” (Handbook to The Grammar of The Greek Testament, page. 181).

    Yet another problem exists in the Greek in verse 9, if we were to remove the words in verse 7.

    “If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son” (KJV)

    “η μαρτυρια του θεου ην μεμαρτυρηκεν περι του υιου αυτου” (the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son)

    Here we have the relative pronoun, “ἥν” (which), as found in the Received Greek Text. This has been corrupted to the conjunction, “ὄτι”. The former reading is used by Tertullian in the early 3rd century, in the Latin, but Tertullian translated himself from the Greek text. Of the latter reading, B F Westcott, who prefers the reading with the conjunction, says, “The second ὅτι is ambiguous… No one of the explanations is without difficulty” (Commentary on 1 John). And, A T Robertson, says that this reading is, “a harsh construction” (Word Pictures). With the reading “ἥν”, this takes us back to the “αὕτη”, in the verse, “THIS is the Witness of God”, which is to the Heavenly Witnesses in verse 7. That the relative pronoun is the correct reading, is confirmed by verse 10, “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that (ἥν) God gave of his Son”. The only Witnesses that God the Father has given, concerning Jesus Christ, is the Witness that we have in the words of verse 7. In verse 6 we have the Witness of the Holy Spirit, concerning Jesus Coming in the flesh, which is again confirmed in verses 7 and 8. Verses 9 and 10 speak of the Witness of the Father, both of which take us back to verse 7, where alone “The Father” is mentioned.

    It is evident, that the internal evidence is very much supportive of the disputed words in verse 7, even though the external “evidence”, which has come down to us, may say otherwise.

    We cannot also ignore the testimony of two very early Church fathers, Tertullian (A.D. 160-220) and Cyprian (died 258), both from the North African Latin Church, who also used the Greek Bible.

    Tertullian, in his work “Against Praxeas”, writes:

    “And so the connection of the Father, and the Son, and of the Paraclete makes three cohering Persons, one in the other, which three are one (qui tres unum sunt) [in substance ‘unum’, not ‘one’ in number, ‘unus’]; in the same manner which it was said, ‘I and the Father are one’, to denote the unity of substance, not the singularity of number” (Ad Prax. C.25).”

    Cyprian, in his work, The Unity of the Church, also writes:

    “The Lord said, I and the Father are one, and again of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, it is written: and these three are one” (V)

    See the language of Cyprian here, “et iterum...scriptum est”, that is, “and again...it is written”. Both he and Tertullian connect John 10:30, “I and the Father We are one”, to their “unity” in 1 John 5:7.

    The textual scholar, Dr Frederick Scrivener, had this to say on Cyprian’s quote:

    “It is surely safer and more candid to admit that Cyprian read ver. 7 in his copies, than to resort to the explanation of Facundus [vi], that the holy Bishop was merely putting on ver.8 a spiritual meaning” (A Plain Introduction to the Criticism of the New Testament, vol. II, p.405)
     
    • Informative Informative x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Conan

    Conan Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2019
    Messages:
    414
    Likes Received:
    98
    Faith:
    Baptist
    • Informative Informative x 2
  3. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
  4. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    1 John 5:7 Versions

    Wycliffe 1382

    “For thre ben, that yyuen witnessing in heuene, the Fadir, the Sone, and the Hooli Goost; and these thre ben oon.”

    Geneva 1560

    “For there are three, which beare recorde in heauen, the Father, the Worde, and the holy Ghost: and these three are one”

    Bishops 1568

    “For there are three which beare recorde in heauen, the father, the worde, and the holy ghost, and these three are one”

    Stephanus 1550

    “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες εν τω ουρανω ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα και ουτοι οι τρεις εν εισιν”

    Luther 1545

    “Denn drei sind, die da zeugen im Himmel: der Vater, das Wort und der Heilige Geist; und diese drei sind eins”

    Douay-Rheims 1582

    “For there be three which giue testimonie in heauen, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost. And these three be one”

    Beza 1598

    “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες εν τω ουρανω ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα και ουτοι οι τρεις εν εισιν”

    King James 1611

    “For there are three that beare record in heauen, the Father, the Word, and the holy Ghost: and these three are one”

    Elzevir 1624

    “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες εν τω ουρανω ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα και ουτοι οι τρεις εν εισιν”

    Scrivener 1894

    “οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες εν τω ουρανω ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα και ουτοι οι τρεις εν εισιν”

    Mace 1729

    “There are three witnesses in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three testify the same thing”

    Bengel 1742

    “Denn drei sind, die da zeugen auf Erden: der Geist und das Wasser und das Blut; und diese drei machen Eines aus”

    Wesley 1755

    “And there are three that testify in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost, and these three are one”

    Haweis 1795

    “For they are three who bear witness in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit, and these, even the three, are one”

    Webster 1833

    “For there are three that bear testimony in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit, and these three are one”

    Young 1898

    “because three are who are testifying in the heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit, and these -- the three -- are one”

    Green 1993

    “For there are three bearing witness in Heaven: the Father the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one”
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  5. Alan Gross

    Alan Gross Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2018
    Messages:
    2,269
    Likes Received:
    247
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I John 5:7b,c reference:

    the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost.
    The "Father" is the first Person, so called, not in, reference to the creatures, angels, or men, he is the Creator, and so the Father of; for this is common to the other two Persons;

    but in reference to his Son Jesus Christ, of whose sonship he bore witness at his baptism and transfiguration upon the mount.

    The "Word" is the second Person, who said and it was done; who spoke all things out of nothing in the first creation;

    who was in the beginning with God the Father, and was God, and by whom all things were created;

    he declared himself to be the Son of God, and proved himself to be so by his works and miracles;

    see ( Mark 14:61 Mark 14:62 ) ( John 5:17 ) ( 10:30 ) and his witness of himself was good and valid; see ( John 8:13-18 ) ; and because it is his sonship that is, here testified of, therefore the phrase, "the Word", and not "the Son", is here used.

    "The Holy Ghost" is the third Person, who proceeds from the Father, and is also called the Spirit of the Son, who testified of, Christ's sonship also at his baptism, by descending on him as a dove, which was the signal given to John the Baptist, by which he knew him, and bare record of him, that he was the Son of God.

    Now the number of these witnesses was three, there being so many persons in the Godhead;

    and such a number being sufficient, according to law, for the establishing of any point: to which may be added, that they were witnesses in heaven, not to the heavenly inhabitants, but to men on earth;

    they were so called, because they were in heaven, and from thence gave out their testimony;

    and which shows the firmness and excellency of it, it being not from earth, but from heaven, and not human, but divine;

    to which may be applied the words of Job, in ( Job 16:19 ) ; it follows,

    and these three are one;

    which is to be understood, not only of their unity and agreement in their testimony, they testifying of the same thing, the sonship of Christ;

    but of their unity in essence or nature, they being the one God.

    So that, this passage holds forth and asserts the unity of God, a trinity of persons in the Godhead, the proper deity of each person, and their distinct personality, the unity of essence in that they are one;

    a trinity of persons in that they are three, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost, and are neither more nor fewer;

    the deity of each person, for otherwise their testimony would not be the testimony of God, as in ( 1 John 5:9 ) ;

    and their distinct personality;

    for were they not three distinct persons,
    they could not be three testifiers, or three that bare record.
     
  6. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Messages:
    50,197
    Likes Received:
    2,588
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Would say was removed due to lack of textual evidence!
     
  7. Conan

    Conan Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2019
    Messages:
    414
    Likes Received:
    98
    Faith:
    Baptist
    All of these but one are all derived from Erasmus's 3rd edition of his Greek, a single source. Wycliffes version is from the Roman Catholic Latin Vulgate and not the Original Greek New Testament. It was missing from Erasmus's 1st and 2nd edition, but underfire from The Roman Catholic Church, he put it in his third edition. Martin Luthers original New Testaments didn't have the non original words in it either because his German Bible was from Erasmus's 2nd edition. Later germans put it in his Bible. All those versions only count as one. Add Wycliffe, 2.
     
  8. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    What is "textual evidence" to you? just the Greek manuscripts that any Tom, Dick and Harry can produce?

    The earliest Greek manuscript "evidence" that we have today for the "Pericope Adulterae", in John 7:53–8:11, is the Codex Bezae Cantabrigiensis, which dates from the 5th century. Jerome, writing in the early 400s, said in his composition Against the Pelagians, 2:17: “In the Gospel according to John, there is found, in many manuscripts, Greek as well as Latin, the story of the adulteress who was accused before the Lord.”. Where are they? And Augustine comments: "Certain persons of little faith, or rather enemies of the true faith, fearing, I suppose, lest their wives should be given impunity in sinning, removed from their manuscripts the Lord's act of forgiveness toward the adulteress, as if he who had said, Sin no more, had granted permission to sin" (De Adulterinis Conjugiis 2:6–7)

    For the reading "θεὸς", in 1 Timothy 3:16, we have very strong Greek Church father testimony for this, as early as Ignatius, who writes, "Θεου ανθρωπινωϛ ϕανερουμενου", which is "God was manifest as Man" (Epist to the Ephesians, 19). and many more who read this in their Greek New Testament. Yet the oldest Greek manuscripts, that we have, read, "ὸς"
     
  9. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    how about answering the internal evidence of the Greek grammar?
     
  10. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Messages:
    50,197
    Likes Received:
    2,588
    Faith:
    Baptist
    He did demolish though the external evidence pretty well!
     
  11. Yeshua1

    Yeshua1 Well-Known Member
    Site Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    Messages:
    50,197
    Likes Received:
    2,588
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Which shows to us that the onus would rest upon those who wish to have it included!
     
  12. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2018
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    536
    Faith:
    Baptist
    . . . οτι τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες [εν τω ουρανω ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα και ουτοι οι τρεις εν εισι και τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες εν τη γη] το πνευμα και το υδωρ και το αιμα και οι τρεις εις το εν εισι . . . .

    The same grammar is used both readings less εν τη γη. What am I not understanding?
     
  13. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    is in the masculine gender, "το πνευμα και το υδωρ και το αιμα", are neuter nouns. The grmmar is wrong without the words in verse 7. Do you get this?
     
  14. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2018
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    536
    Faith:
    Baptist
    So how do two masculine nouns in verse 7 also fix the very same phrase used in verse 8 for the three neuter nouns. That is what I need to know.
     
  15. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    In verse 7 with "ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα" (the Father the Word and the Holy Spirit), we have 2 of the nouns, "ο πατηρ ο λογος", in the masculine gender, and "το αγιον πνευμα", is in the neuter. In this case, because the 2 nouns are in the masculine, "τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες...οἱ τρεῖς", which is in the masculine, "governs" all three of the nouns, as it would be impossible to write "τρια εισι τα μαρτυρουντα", in the netuer. The Three are Personal.
     
  16. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2018
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    536
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Ok in verse 7. Verse 8 uses the same "τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες...οἱ τρεῖς", With or without the two masculine nouns from verse 7?

    . . . οτι [τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες εν τω ουρανω ο πατηρ ο λογος και το αγιον πνευμα και ουτοι οι τρεις εν εισι και] τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες [εν τη γη] το πνευμα και το υδωρ και το αιμα και οι τρεις εις το εν εισι . . . .

    What I am not getting is how?
     
    #16 37818, Apr 28, 2021
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
  17. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    Because in verse 7, the Holy Spirit has already been identified with the Persons, "the Father and the Word", in the masculine gender. In verse 8, the lead noun is "το πνευμα", which here refers back to verse 7, so His Personal Testimony continues, in verse 8 in the masculine. the use of the masculine, "τρεις εισιν οι μαρτυρουντες...οἱ τρεῖς", cannot be account for without the masculine nouns. Grammatically there is no objection to this, and best answers any problems.
     
  18. 37818

    37818 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2018
    Messages:
    6,358
    Likes Received:
    536
    Faith:
    Baptist
    So the Spirit is reckoned as masculine for the water and the blood. [John 19:34, blood and water]
     
  19. SavedByGrace

    SavedByGrace Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2020
    Messages:
    5,331
    Likes Received:
    203
    Faith:
    Baptist
    The Holy Spirit is a Person Who is masculine
     
  20. Conan

    Conan Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2019
    Messages:
    414
    Likes Received:
    98
    Faith:
    Baptist
    I noticed that the Greeks scribes who copied our new testament all throughout the ages didn't have a problem with the Greek grammar. I would assume if they did they would try to correct it. But they did not.
     
    #20 Conan, Apr 28, 2021
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2021
    • Winner Winner x 1
Loading...