by Erskine L. Holt
In I Corinthians, chapter 15, verse 28, we read, "And when all things
shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject
unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all."
What we're discussing here is the subject of the Godhead. It's a big subject.
It's so big that it almost seems fool hardy to attempt to do anything
about it. And yet God wants to be known. From the very beginning, after
I realized that God would reveal some things about Himself, I had a passion
to find out all that I could know about Him. If God be God, He would be
the most entrancing subject possible. What He does is wonderful, but God
Himself would be more wonderful and I felt compelled to read everything
about Him that I could get my hands on. I read all of the theologies,
books galore, until I found myself in an intellectual tail-spin. Everybody
had a concept. But I still kept seeking all the time.What I didn't know
was that anything that is real from God must come by revelation, not by
intellect. So while I was in this intellectual tail-spin because of my
intellectual searches, God knew my heart. I studied the scriptures and
went to a great deal of trouble to learn what I could. Over a period of
years I amassed a great storehouse of knowledge concerning what I'd read
about the Godhead.
One day while I was teaching in a Bible school in Zion, Illinois, one
of the students asked me a question about heaven and what we would see
there. While he spoke, the Spirit of God fell upon me. I made a statement
and then for the next four hours I taught by revelation. It came out just
as fast as I could speak. And it was so imprinted in me that I never forgot
it. I was able to put it down on paper. What I am writing here is what
God originally gave to me. It represents years of seeking. It didn't happen
overnight; it just crystallized at one time. The result was that revival
broke out in the Bible school. I didn't dare tell anyone why, because
I knew it would be misunderstood. So I just let the thing ride.
THE REVELATION BACKGROUND
We have a right to expect God to reveal some things. In John 16:13 we
read, "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide
you into all truth." So I had a right to expect that God would guide
by His Spirit into any truth He was prepared to give me, or I was capable
Here is another scripture that the Lord gave me and that's I Corinthians
8:2-3. I needed to recognize that what He had given me was only at its
best partial because of my own limited capacity. "If any man think
that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know.
But if any man love God, the same is known of him."
There was a cry in my heart to know God. I don't know about your experience,
but when I first got saved God was very, very real. To the degree that
I was reaching out, God was a reality. It was not just a feeling. It was
more than that. God to me was a person, someone to whom I could cry out.
And I remember trying to please the Lord with a dance, a simple ballet
step. I thought He would like that. Following that, I had a sickness in
my throat and I said, "God, there are no elders present and I don't
know how to do it, but I'm going to anoint myself with oil and then I
want you to help me." He did. The sickness disappeared. That was
my introduction to God. I was so excited and happy during the ballet,
which I didn't do too well but thought it would please Him, that I was
beside myself. He became intensely real, as real to me as He could be
at that particular time. It was then that the desire to know God more
and more was born in my heart.
All that could make it possible to know about Him from reading or praying,
I did. I remember one night of being so frustrated because of my inability
to put everything together that I went out in the front yard and cried
like a baby. Were you ever in a place like that, where you felt as if
you were on the brink of something, but it just didn't crystallize? Well,
that's the way it was with me.
One of the reasons why I sought a revelation was because in the group
that I was a part, great controversies about God were prevalent. I sensed
that somewhere there was a clarifying answer to all these problems. Furthermore,
there were certain apparent discrepancies in the scriptures lining up
with these conflicting doctrines, so I didn't get an answer there. I thought
God could give the key to the revelation of Himself that many of these
challenging scriptures would support. So that was the direction of my
As I began to go back into church history, I found out that there was
a dogma of the Trinity, a dogma that says we can understand certain things
but that this understanding is limited. Basically, this is what it says:
God in some mysterious way is one but is manifested as three persons.
In another mysterious way God, though He is three, is just one God. These
are the two elements of the doctrine of the Trinity:one in three and three
in one. This really doesn't satisfy our intellect. And I began to find
out that there were controversies even among the early Nicene fathers.
The particular man who held that God is three-in-one was Bishop Sibellius.
This doctrine became known as the Sibellian heresy. I also found that
the idea of one-in-three, being over-emphasized, was tri-theism, or belief
in three gods. I could see how this developed because in my own approach
to God I reasoned this way. Since Jesus was seated at the right hand of
the Father, there must be another personage on the throne if He is going
to sit on the right hand in a physical sense. If God is on the throne,
and Jesus is at His right hand, then there must be two personages up there.
But for the life of me I couldn't locate the Holy Spirit.
And yet there were three in one. I knew that the Holy Spirit was real
and that God, also Jesus, was real. But how to put these three together
I didn't know. So I read all the books I could find on the subject. I
would develop this for a while and then I would go back and look at that,
and finally, when God began to give the revelation, He let me see scriptures
all over the Bible. I had to take the scriptures for what they were saying
and not read into them what I had thought they said. We often get a scripture
and immediately come to a conclusion that it means such and such because
this is what we have been taught. I found out from the beginning that
if I was going to know anything about God, I had to take a scripture on
the basis of the revelation of the Spirit that He gave me at that particular
time without previous knowledge getting in the way and interpreting it.
This is difficult, very difficult. As a matter of fact, it had me tied
up for a number of years. It is very hard for any of us to look at a passage
of scripture and take it for what it says instead of what we make it to
say because of previous knowledge.
THE TRIUNE GOD REVEALED
(At this point see exhibit A for list of scriptures to find out whether
these references indicate a unity or a plurality in the Godhead.)
To me it's undeniable that while there is indicated a unity in the Godhead
in many of these scriptures, at the same time there is more than one reference
that indicates a plurality. From the fact that three are mentioned distinctly
it would seem that God is Trinity. I much prefer the term "triune"
to the word "Trinity." We're not talking about persons yet,
just that there seems to be a plurality in theGodhead.
In Psalm 33:6, Job 26:13, Heb. 11:1-3-3, we find out something of how
God worked in creation. Psalm 33 :6 refers to both His Word-and the breath
of His mouth or His Spirit so it's easy to see, as you go through the
Bible, that God has two agencies, the agency of the Word and the agency
of the Spirit. For example, we are born again of the Spirit, but it says
in First Peter that we are born again of the incorruptible Word. So you
have the Word and the Spirit, a factor that enters into practically everything
that God does. For example, salvation needs the combination of the divine
seed, or the Word, plus the watering by the Spirit. It takes the two.
You have it in the natural; you have it in the spiritual. We're born again
because the divine Word is implanted in us by the Holy Spirit and then
watered so that there is germination. (See Job 26:13)
Heb. 11:1-3 implies that, if God is triune, and there is evidence in the
scriptures that this is so, then God, like anyone who creates, is going
to leave His mark. We would expect to see a reflection of His inward being
in everything that He does. So creation, outward creation, can be divided
into three parts. The first is matter, or substance.The second is space.
It is not enough to have matter and space, there is another element. For
example, say if I'm seated in a chair. Certainly, at an earlier time someone
else sat in this chair. Why aren't we both here all at once? TIME! If
you tell me that there is a certain thing at a certain place at a certain
time, that locates it. Matter, space,and time constitute a triad. Strangely
enough these, too, can be broken down into three parts. What is time?
Past, present, future. And space? Height, length, breadth.How about matter?
Solid, liquid, gas. As another illustration of Trinity you have the three
states of water. Water is liquid, but as ice it's solid and as steam it's
gaseous. Practically everything can be expressed in three states as a
reflection of God's nature.
God, though is revealed not only in His outward manifestation but also
in an inwardcreation that deals with us on the inside. This, unlike the
outward, is subjective. SeeLuke 15:12,17, the parable of the prodigal
son. First the son said "Give me." That's the person. Then there
is the fact of the son's personality. Actually, when he came to himself
he came to his real nature. The person is what you see in a mirror. Personality
is what people view you as. Nature is what you really are. In the Godhead
the person is the son, the personality is the Spirit and the nature is
the father. All things lead to this reality. In other words, you have
to be around an individual's person and personality a while until these
two things reveal his true nature. Then you really know the individual.
(You have this in marriage.) It's by the Son and the Spirit that theFather
The person, I'm using the person now in a subjective sense just in this
description of an inward creation; the person, or Son, of God, is the
one who comes upon the scene. God is not seen, per se. But the son, God
in the Son, is seen. You feel theSpirit. You don't see the Spirit, but
you feel the Spirit. God is only revealed by His Spirit, through the Son,
no other way. God is too ineffable, too big, to be known otherwise.
But there is another thing about God. I John 1:5 says, "God is light."
So, since God is light, we would expect even natural light to give some
insight concerning God, and it just so happens that this is true. Light
is divided into three parts. First actinic - Next is luminiferous - Last
is calorific. The actinic is unseen. The luminiferous is seen. The calorific
is felt. You see the light. That's the luminiferous part of the light
which is very obvious, but if you get close to it you'll find another
part, the calorific part. As amatter of fact, you can burn your hand on
it. Men have been trying for a long time to separate light, but it's rather
difficult. Light is light. If you want the calorific part you will have
to take the luminiferous, or if you want the luminiferous you will have
to take the calorific. They all go together. You can't separate them.
light is one. Yet it's three.That's one picture, but it's only one.
Light is also seven colors. The figure that brings this out is a rainbow,
or a spectrum. These seven primary colors are found between infra-red
on one end, and ultra-violet on the other, both of which are invisible.
Seven primary colors in between.Now the Bible says that there are seven
lamps of fire burning before the throne. In Revelation 4:5 "There
were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven
spirits of God. "There are not really seven spirits but a sevenfold,
or a complete, manifestation of theHoly Spirit. These seven spirits are
mentioned in the 11th chapter of Isaiah. They're alsomentioned as seven
by using the term seven horns, seven eyes, which are the seven spirits
sent into all the world, Rev. 5:6. It means God, who is light, is revealing
His attributes. Strangely enough, in physics when a light ray is shown
through a quartz prism the light rays arer efracted, and that which comes
out is a spectrum. What or whom do you suppose this quartz prism is, spiritually
speaking? It's Christ, God's prism. (Body, soul, and spirit). The light
is God. The refraction of light is the glory of God or the Holy Spirit.
Did you ever notice that Jesus is never separated from the Glory? As a
matter of fact, one of His titles is the Lord of Glory. For example, in
Acts 7, when the first martyr looked up into heaven what did he see? Jesus
Christ. And He came out of the glory to greet him. That glory is the Holy
Spirit that surrounds the throne, and Jesus is the one from whence it
comes. This is in line not only with Scripture but also in line with what
we have in nature. For example, oneof the names of Jesus Christ is rain.
He's called rain in Hosea 6:3. He that shall come to us as rain. And what
happens when the sun shines through rain? The rain breaks up the particles
of light, and you have the rainbow. You'll find that there is a rainbow
about the Throne, which indicates the glory of God because there God is
shining through the Son. You also have the seven lamps of fire burning
before the Throne. These are just pictures of God, things that we've picked
up over a period of time.
There's another picture of God that is very important. The Bible says
in I John 4:8 that God is love. But love presupposes some things. If you
have love you have someone giving and someone receiving. There is the
lover and the beloved. Who is the beloved? Jesus Christ is called the
beloved. "We are accepted in the beloved," we read in Ephesians.
God the Father is the One who loves the Son. The flow between them is
so dynamic that it, too, is God. God is love. As a matter of fact, there
is a very beautiful picture of this in (Ephesians 1:6). Somebody asked
me a question, "Why are there two cherubim in the Holiest-of-All?"
If you recall the story there are two cherubim facing each other with
the glory in between. What do you suppose that represents ? (See Ex. 25:16-22)
The Father and the Son, and the flow between them the shekinah which is
the Holy Spirit.
THE MYSTERIOUS HOLY SPIRIT
This brings up a question. When we start talking about love, and the flow
between the Father and the Son, and the Father shining through the Son,
and the Holy Spirit flowing between them, we come into contact with a
mysterious part of God or a mysterious revelation, the mystery of the
Holy Spirit. It bothered me that the Holy Spirit had such a pre-eminent
place in the New Testament, and that if any blasphemed Him they were really
in hotwater! But people had been saved who blasphemed God. And others
who blasphemed theSon. Yet the Bible says if anyone blasphemes the Holy
Ghost they are in danger of eternal damnation. (Mark 3:28-29) So I asked
the Lord for understanding. Why was theHoly Spirit so important? I knew
that people had blasphemed God. My own father shook his fist in the face
of God and challenged Him. Later he lost one eye. After I became a Christian
I led my father to the Lord, and he received the baptism in the Holy Spirit.
How was this possible since he blasphemed God? Many of us who have been
out in the world have used the name of the Lord in vain. We blasphemed
that name all the time, didn't we? And yet we weren't in danger of eternal
damnation, not just on account of that.But the Bible distinctly says if
you blaspheme the Holy Spirit you are. Right? So I asked why? I had to
go to some scriptures. In Matthew 10:20 you find out something about the
Holy Spirit. "For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your
Father which speaketh in you." Gal. 4:6 says, "And because ye
are sons, God hash sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts,
crying Abba, Father:" The Bible says that there is just one Spirit.
(See Eph. 4:4-6) So the Spirit of the Father must be the Holy Spirit,
and the Spirit of the Son must be the Holy Spirit. But how do these things
Let me use an illustration. Here is John Doe. Now John Doe has a spirit
which is distinctly John Doe. And when you are around him you feel the
impact of that spirit. But there is also Jane. When you're with Jane you
feel a spirit that is different from John's spirit. It's distinctively
different, believe me. This spirit here is not the same as that one over
there.They're two different spirits. But when you visit the Does in their
house you meet a third spirit. Do you know what the third spirit is? The
combination of the two. What would we call that? The Doe spirit. Now the
Doe spirit cannot speak of itself because it's a combination of two spirits,
a combination of the John spirit and the Jane spirit. It's somewhat the
same way with God. The Father and the Son unite in the Holy Spirit.
In John 14:23 we read, "If any man love me, he will keep my words:
and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode
with him." How does the "we" come in? The "we"
comes in through union. It's the Holy Spirit that comes in, actually.
I don't say this is the last word. All this did was to satisfy my heart,
not my intellect. I still don't understand it. I don't know how this can
be true, and yet the Holy Spirit is a distinct entity. If somebody blasphemes
the Father there is a mediatorial Son to intercede. If he blasphemes the
Son there is a merciful Father to forgive. But when he blasphemes the
Holy Spirit he blasphemes theFather and the Son in action, (the most powerful
force in the universe). That is why in this blasphemy there is no recourse.
No recourse whatsoever. He has blasphemed the totality of God.
Though I do not agree with Scofield's notes, there is one passage that
I think is very good. It's at the end of Matthew where he makes a comment
about the use of a name in baptism. "The word "name" is
singular, not plural. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is the final name of
the one true God. It affirms: (l) that God is one (2) that He exists in
a personality which is threefold, indicated by relationship as Father
and Son and by mode of being as Spirit. I Corinthians 1:3 says, "Grace
be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ."You
see, it just uses the two. It's indicating personality. Yet, when it speaks
about being born again, it doesn't say anything about the Father and the
Son. It merely says you must be born again. You must be born of the water
and of the Spirit. (John 3:5) It doesn't mention the Father and the Son
but uses the term Spirit because the two are in action together.
In 1 Peter it says, in effect, "Don't worry. when people revile you
and persecute you and so forth, because the Spirit of glory doth rest
upon you. " It indicates that the Spirit, then, is just God in total
action (I Peter 4:14). The Bible says that "he which acknowledgeth
the Son hath the Father." Why? Because the Father and the Son are
one through the action of the Holy Spirit. This oneness is so close in
God that actually you have an interplay of terms. For example, in one
place it will say, "Christ in you the hope of glory." Right?
"Know ye not that your bodies are the temple of the Holy Ghost."
And, "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of
his good pleasure." As you go backward and forward, you can't separate
God. You can't separate the Father and the Son. They're together. They're
together in the person of the Holy Spirit, who speaks in His own right
but never speaks of Himself. Jesus said that in His name the Father would
send the Holy Spirit. In another place Jesus said that He, Himself, would
send Him. In another scripture Jesus said, "I will send the Comforter."
In still another, Jesus said the Father will send the Comforter. It doesn't
make any difference. They all merge. In the Holy Spirit we have God the
Father and God the Son coming together in total action. (SeePhil. 2:13)
This was the only explanation that I could get that made any sense. And
it explained why blasphemy against the Holy Spirit was fatal.
In the natural you have an illustration of it in family relationships.
Here's a father, here's a mother. You can make remarks against the father,
and the mother might say,"Well, you may be right." And you could
make remarks against the mother, and the father might say, "Yes,
I know." But you touch one of the children and you have two tigers
on your tail. Why? Because the child represents the two in one. Yet that
child is a third entity in his own right. Love is an overpowering force.
It's creative. Right? Love creates. And love is two forces coming together,
the Father and the Son; the lover and the beloved. This creates love,
and in turn, love creates, love moves.Amen.
God is triune. He reveals Himself this way in the human. We are made in
the image of God, aren't we? I know one thing about humans, they can do
something that's strange, very strange. That is, inside you can talk to
yourself about something you said and listen in on the conversation. And
make a decision and say perhaps to yourself you shouldn't have said that!
Isn't that true? We're made in the image of God. You can talk to yourself,
which brings in two, and then listen in on the speech, which brings in
the third. It's a mystery.
THE MYSTERIOUS CHRIST
The next thing about the Godhead that caught my attention was Christ,
because the scriptures talk about the mystery of Christ, (1 Tim. 3:16
& Col. 2:1,2). Strangely enough, I came to this revelation in a very
unique way, by not understanding a scripture. Revelation 3:14 says, "And
unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write: These things saith
theAmen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation
of God." Notice in your Bible that the Amen is capitalized. It refers,
of course, to the Lord Jesus Christ. It says He is the beginning of the
creation of God. This concerned me. So I began to wonder, "Is Jesus
a created being?" Was it possible that the Jehovah Witnesses and
some of these other groups that talk about Him as a God, but not God,
were right? Rev. 3 :14 does speak of Him as the beginning of the creation.
I didn't know that what He was talking about here was the beginning of
the New Creation. All I saw was "the beginning of the creation of
God", and I wondered if it might be possible that Jesus was a created
being like these groups teach? Then I read other scriptures and in the
first chapter of Revelation, the 8th verse, He calls Himself the Alpha
and Omega, the beginning and ending, that limitation. I thought, "Could
He be a created being? It was mystifying.
So I began to go back into the Bible. And certain scriptures lit up. One
of the scriptures that I saw right away relative to the relationship here
between Jesus Christ and the Father was Isaiah 9:6, "Unto us a child
is born, unto us a son is given:" This was a mysterious scripture.
Why is the child born and the son given? And the Lord said, "Because
the son wasn't born, the child was born. The son was given." That
indicated that the Lord Jesus was in existence even before His incarnation.
Then finally I found in Colossians 1:15-17, scriptures that seemed to
answer my question: Speaking of the Lord Jesus Christ this passage reads,
"Who is the image of the invisible God, the first-born of every creature:
For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in
earth, visible and invisible, whether they are thrones, or dominions,
or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for
Him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist."
Again it says He was the creator, (c.f John. 1: 1-3).
This raised a lot of questions in my mind. What's this? He's the firstborn
of every creature. It sounds like maybe He's a created being. But then
one day God led me to the 43 chapter of Isaiah, and this was the beginning
of a search that led me through a lot of scriptures. I'm going to ask
you, and this is going to be hard because you're going to use previous
knowledge to answer me, to read it in the light, logically, of what that
one verse says.Forget anything about theology or anything you previously
learned and tell yourself what it actually says using the scripture itself.
Verse 10, "Ye are my witnesses, said the Lord, and my servant whom
I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I
am he:before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after
me." Now what does this say?Apart from any previous knowledge what
does that one scripture say about this one who's speaking? What is He
saying? What are some logical conclusions to draw from the latter part
where it says, "before me there was no God formed, neither shall
there be after me?" Forget what you know now. Is it possible that
God was formed? It came to me that there are certain verses in the Bible
that talk about Jesus being in the form of God, "And thought it not
robbery to be equal with God." Things began to crystallize about
this time, and I realized that while Jesus Christ was not created, He
was in the form of God. The key to the whole thing was found in Philippines
2:5, "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who
being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
But made himself of no reputation and took upon him the form of a servant,
and was made in the likeness of men:"That's a quote from the New
How about the Old Testament. Jesus was in the form of God in the Old Testament.
And as I began to look through the Old Testament I found some strange
things. Even then God appeared at times in physical form. Sometimes He
was called "the angel of His presence;" sometimes He was called
the similitude of God; sometimes He was called the form, and so forth.
I found out that in scriptures, as in Exodus 24:9,10 "Then went up
Moses, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel:
And they saw the God of Israel:" In John1:18 it says, "No man
hath seen God at any time: the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom
of the Father, he hath declared him." So I thought, How do these
things jive?" And the Lord pointed out that the only God who was
manifested in the Old Testament was the image or form of the invisible
God, and that form of God was none other than the Lord Jesus Christ.He
was the God of Israel, because He was seen. In Numbers 12:6-8 we read,
"And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you,
I the Lord will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak
unto him in a dream. My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all
mine house. With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and
not in dark speeches; and the similitude (form) of the Lord shall he behold:"
It gradually dawned on me that this one in the Old Testament had lots
of titles: form of God, the similitude of God, the angel of his presence,
the captain of the hosts, the voice of God walking in the garden in the
cool of the day, (better translation of"voice" is "word")
came down in the cool of the day to talk with Adam and Eve. A similitude
or image appeared, so I began to see that Jesus was in the Old Testament
too, not as Jesus, but as the Son, He was there. Nebuchadnezzar and many
others saw a fourth man walking in the fire, the Son of God. Jesus was
there all the time even in the Old Testament, not as Jesus but as the
Son. In the New Testament He said," Before Abraham was, I am. "
God said to me, "Make a drawing to illustrate this, using time and
eternity". (SeeExhibit B for sketch.) Eternity is going to be very
hard to illustrate because it has no beginning and no ending; it is always
now. In the sketch we show eternity past and eternity future, which is
simply a device to show how the dimension of time fits intothe picture.
Time and eternity apparently coexist, but eternity has no beginning and
no ending whereas time has both beginning and ending. Now there is no
such thing as eternity past or future, but that's the only way we can
understand it. Sandwiched between eternity past and eternity future is
time. Jesus is God in time. He's thefirstborn of every creature. He said,
"I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and theending..." (See
Rev 1:8). The first thing on the scene then was the firstborn of every
creature. Jesus began to appear in the form of God in the beginning of
time an) as such, He became the creator. He was not created. Jesus just
came forth. It's a mystery.Then you have all the rest of creation in order.
Finally comes the end, I Corinthians15:28, that was quoted in the beginning
of this article, where He turns the kingdom back to the Father that God
may be all-in-all. The Lord showed me that time is Christ and Christ is
time. Everything starts with Him, everything ends with Him. And when Christ
turns the kingdom back to the Father, time is no more. The Son Himself
returns into an ineffable union with the Father in eternity. In eternity
the name "Christ" disappears. All you have at the end is the
throne of God and of the Lamb.
What's the difference in this whole scheme of things? What does all of
this say? It says that in the beginning God was pure Spirit, but through
the introduction of the Lord Jesus Christ and His plan through Christ,
He created everything. He ends up with the tabernacle and that tabernacle
is us. The big difference between God back then and God now is that God
back then had no body. Now God has a body. All that came in between is
merely preparation for that. He said, "This is my rest forever: Here
will I dwell;..." (Ps. 132:14). As indicated in the exhibit, Christ
is active throughout the time dimension, as creator in the beginning and
redeemer at the end, with the cross in the middle. 1 Cor. 15: 24-28 also
says that He's consummator. He's everything. All of the plan and purpose
of God is wrapped up in Jesus Christ. He is the Logos.He is the whole
plan of God. Everything started with Him. He redeemed everything and put
everything under His own jurisdiction. The last enemy to be destroyed
is death. Then the Bible says, "He is excepted which put all things
under Him but when all things are put under Him, then shall the Son himself
be subject to Him that put all things under him that God may be all-in-all."
Does that mean Jesus Christ is subservient? Not really. It means that
He enters back into the relationship He had with the Father before the
world began. He now shares the throne with His Father, because as Revelation
states, this throne is the throne of God and the Lamb.And there's a true
river of water of life flowing from the union of God and God-who-became
man. This River is the Holy Spirit, Who is the result of that union.
Christ is associated with time. This answered a lot of things for me.
For example, in Isaiah 9:6 He's called the everlasting Father, but that
means the father of the ages, the father of time, not eternally but the
father in time. The Bible says He rules and reigns until the end. So there
is an end. The end comes when He turns the kingdom back to the Father
that God may be all-in-all.Jesus, who is God, goes through all this in
order to accomplish the purposes of God.
In a unique way Jesus Christ is always our first relationship. Thomas
said, "My Lord and my God." He saw God's eternal purpose in
Jesus. And Jesus now is in a mysterious position. He's still in time and
eternity simultaneously. Revelation 3:21 says, "To him that overcometh
will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as also I overcame, and
am set down with my Father in his throne." What He's saying is, "I
am seated on my throne, the throne of David, in time, but in eternity
it is not David who is involved, but the Father. So He says, "I'm
on David's throne
now, and I'm also on my Father's." How can He do this? Very simple.
He's God.When He said, "Glorify thou Me with the glory I had before
the world was;" when He went back into the bosom of the Father as
He said He would, He went back into the Godhead. In some mysterious way
Jesus is still in time, but He is also ineternity. I don't understand
this, but I know it's the truth. And Jesus can speak from eternity right
now. He can unfold things now that we just haven't any concept of. Incidentally,
He's amazingly wonderful. Christ is God's complement.
We are trying to give you an understanding of all this in pictures. That's
the best we can do. I'm sorry, but God-is too big to be minutely analyzed
or defined so that it will satisfy every intellectual question. We're
like the blind men. We see pieces of the elephant. We're only giving you
pictures. You'll have to put it together. But as far as I'm concerned,
my heart is satisfied. If God gives me further light, I'll be glad to
share it. So far He hasn't seen fit to.
Genesis 5:1 reads, "This is the book of the generations of Adam.
In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; male
and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam,
in the day when they were created." You may not receive this, but
when God created man originally he was male and female in one person and
He looked for a mate for him. There was none to be found. He had to do
something about it, so He reached inside of the man and pulled out the
female part of him. That part was named Eve. Man as he is now is incomplete
by himself. It takes man plus woman to really equal man. No woman is complete
without a man and no man is complete without a woman.There is another
scripture I want you to see, I Corinthians 11:3. "But I would have
you know, that the head of every man is, Christ; and the head of the woman
is the man; and the head of Christ is God."
Have you heard the expression, "Hid with Christ in God?" (Col.
3:2) You have God, and you have Christ in God, and Christ comes out of
God. Then out of Christ comes the church. Weren't we in Christ before
the foundation of the world? Weren't we accepted in the beloved before
the foundation? All this is simply the unfolding of God. Out of God comes
the Lord Jesus Christ; out of Christ comes the church. Now, eventually
this is to go back. The church plus Christ equals Christ.And ultimately
when Jesus Christ turns the kingdom back to the Father, Christ plus God
goes back into the eternal state so that it is just God again. There is
an unfolding out of God, and there is an enfolding back into God. So when
it's all over God is all-in-all. It's just that simple. And you have pictures
of it in everything that God does. Out come these things, and then He
brings them back in so that He can encompass everything. The ultimate,
then, is not Christ but God. Christ, as such, plays His role in time,
and then He goes back into the Godhead in a special way. I'm speaking
about time now. He's already there, actually, but in time He goes back
into the Godhead that God may be all-in-all.
Another picture of God is given by the great English Christian man of
letters, C. S. Lewis. He said in essence, (and this to me is one of the
best explanations of the relationship between Jesus Christ and the Father).
Imagine yourself living in one plane like a sheet of paper. You have only
two dimensions, which means that a sphere would be a circle, a plane would
be a line, and a cube would be a square, in your world. You have two dimensions.
That's all. The understanding here is that there are beings in another
dimension called humans that have three dimensions, and you would like
to know what these humans are like. You live in only two dimensions, and
you want to know what these three-dimensional creatures look like. There
is a way you could find out. That is, for someone to give you a photograph.
A photograph is a two-dimensional representation of a three dimensional
object. Let's step up alittle bit higher. You have three-dimensional creatures
living in a three-dimensional world, and there is an infinite dimensional
God. He not only lives in the fourth dimension. He lives in the 5, 6,
and 16 quadrillionth dimension. You say, "What do you look like?"
He says, "I'll tell you what I'll do. I'll send you my three-dimensional
photograph. And who do you think that three-dimensional photograph was?
The Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ, then, is in three dimensions, the
representative, the photograph, or the image of the infinite dimensional
God. Because God is so big, you can't comprehend Him. God as God is beyond
our understanding.You would have to be God to understand God. To be everywhere
present, to reach out where He is, you'd have to be God. The only one
who understands God is God Himself. And that's God the Son.
The reason, the Lord showed me, that Jesus Christ must be the image is
because God in His infinite love and makeup must of necessity have someone
to love who can reciprocate with the intensity with which He loves. Now
we can envision somebody we love out there, but at its best it's rather
vague. But when God envisions Himself that image is so terrific that the
image is also God. The flow between is so wonderful that the flow is God.
That's where this thing is set up in the inner nature of the Godhead.
God not only is love, God has always been love. But love cannot be love
unless there is a lover and a beloved.. There must be the flow. Love demands
an active thing. It's not just a static condition. It's always got to
be moving. So God has always been love. Since God has always been love
there has always been a lover and a beloved and the flow between them.So
what God began to reveal to me is the fact it is necessary for us to recognize
that Jesus is uniquely the uppermost consideration as far as we are concerned.
The Bible teaches that. The Father points to it; the Old Testament points
to it, and when the Spirit comes He reveals it. Everything is to glorify
and to magnify the Son of God. He is the one in the Bible. This does not
detract from the Father because God as God is humility in Himself. The
Father says, "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased. Hear
ye Him." (Matt. 17:5) You talk about humility. Jesus said, "It's
not I, but it's the Father in me that doeth the works" (John 14:10).
He also said, "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit
is saying to the churches."(Rev. 3:22) It's amazing, this humility.
God is marvelous! I get excited just talking about it.
Now during times when people are learning about God, they have pictures
of God. One picture of God is that there are three members of the Godhead
that are in unity. They are One. And one is the Father, one the Holy Spirit,
and one the Son. But the Son in the three takes upon Himself flesh, and
that is the Lord Jesus Christ. That's one viewpoint. The Sibellian viewpointis
that God is just God; God made Himself a body, and that body is the Lord
Jesus Christ.That's another picture. Actually, I think the real truth
is not one or the other but in between.God is not three circles. God is
a triangle. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And it was the Son who became
the Lord Jesus Christ. A triune God, not a tri-theistic concept on the
one hand, or this extreme oneness on the other, but in the middle. Take
an angle away from a triangle and what do you have? Do you have a triangle?
No! God is like an inseparable triangle: Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
You can't get away from that. Now using this figure that I used for eternity
a while ago, one person says that God is just a straight line. In the
O.T. He was Father, when He came to earth He was Son, and now He's Holy
Spirit. That's the picture that is given by the people who lean toward
Sibellianism. They indicate that God is like some fellow in a little town
where He puts on the farmer's hat, and then he puts on the police chief's
hat and then takes it off. God revealed Himself as Father, then He came
as Son, and then He came back as Holy Spirit. But it's just one God.
Tri-theism teaches that there are three all the way through, and it is
generally held that these are Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I believe,
from all that I've been able to ascertain, that a better picture of God
is not one straight line or three lines, but one line that separates into
three lines and then goes back into one again. God, for the purpose of
redemption, broke Himself down, so to speak, into Father, Son, and Holy
Ghost for the purposes of creation, redemption, and consummation. Then
when it's all over it's just God again, ineffable. God is one. I call
it triunity rather than trinity. God is three but, in some mysterious
way that we donot understand, He is One. Jewish people accuse Christians
of believing in three Gods. Well there aren't three Gods. There is only
one God. Yet, in some mysterious way, He is able to separate Himself;
just like we can inside though we're still one. How can this be? I don't
know. I just know that it's true.
Now the question that brought all of this out as far as I was concerned
and crystallized all my thinking began when a student in the school where
I was teaching in Zion, Illinois, asked, "When we get to heaven whom
shall we see?" And I answered, "You'll see Jesus and no one
else. You can't see the Father because He's invisible. You can't see the
Holy Spirit. He's invisible. All you can see is the Lord." Let me
point out a scripture: I Timothy 6:13-16. "I give thee charge in
the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus,
who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; that thou keep
this commandment without spot; unrebukeable, until the appearing of our
Lord Jesus Christ: Which in his times he shall show, who is the blessed
and only potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;" (Now who's
he talking about here? Who is the only Potentate, the King of kings, and
the Lord of lords? It's Jesus.) Who only hath immortality, dwelling in
the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can
see. Amen." The only Person that you will ever see is the Ancient
of Days. This is who John saw when on the Isle of Patmos. Whom did he
see? He saw the one that had white hair, and so forth. He saw the Ancient
of Days. I thought for a longtime that the Ancient of Days was the Father.
But I found in Revelation that the Ancient of Days is not the Father.
The Ancient of Days is the visible Son, because when he saw Him it dawned
on him that he was looking at Deity. He was looking at the one who said,
"I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending. I am the first
and the last. I am the Almighty. " (Rev. 1:8) This was the one who
And so John fell at His feet as dead. This one that he saw said, "I
am he that was dead, but I'm alive forevermore. I have the keys to hell
and death." (Rev. 1:18) It was none other than theLord Jesus Christ,
something like the Son of man but far more glorious. John had never seen
this face. He saw the Ancient of Days. He saw the only visible One that
I believe you'll ever see. People say they want to see God. Jesus is God.
He truly is! Thou shalt call His name what? Immanuel, which being interpreted
is "God with us." (Isa. 7:14). Great is the mystery of God!
God was manifested in the flesh, justified, caught up and so forth. Jesus
is God. You can't rob Him of that. God is God. The fact that God the Father
seems to use the Son doesn't change the fact that Jesus is God.
Now one of the things that you'll find in Jewry is the Star of David.
(See Exhibit C) If you ever take a close look at it you'll find that it's
not really a star. It's two interlocking triangles. It has been said that
the Jewish people knew that the inverted triangle was the body, soul,
and spirit of the Messiah. They knew that. And they said that He would
make known the meaning of the other triangle when He came. What do you
suppose that other triangle is? Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In the ultimate
God completely and totally brings Himself together in the Lord Jesus Christ
for our benefit. You have the throne of God and of the Lamb, all in one.
Look at Revelation 21:23, "And the city had no need of the sun, neither
the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the
Lamb is the light (better translation is "lamp holder") thereof:"
In verse 1 of chapter 22, "...he showed me a pure river of water
of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne (singular, not
plural) of God and of the Lamb." These two are together, "of
God and of the Lamb." And verse 3 says, "And there shall be
no more curse:but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and
his servants shall serve him: (not their servants shall serve them.) And
they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads."
You see, this is the same thing that Isaiah saw. Read Isaiah 6:1. Isaiah
saw theLord, high and lifted up, and what did the angels sing'? "Holy,
holy, holy." Why do you supposethey sang "holy" three time's?
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, the three-fold description of praise. This
is the Lord as He is to be in eternity.
You can't get away from the fact that Jesus Christ is the one in whom
all the fullness of the Godhead dwells. God has ordained it. (see Col.
2:8,9) The Bible speaks of the throne of God.I found a beautiful truth
about that. After puzzling about this for years, in Isaiah 22:23, I read
that Jesus is the throne Himself. What is a throne? In a figure, when
we say that so-and-so is on his throne, what do we really mean? Do we
mean he's seated on a pedestal? Or do we mean he has a seat of power?
When we say so-and-so is going to put his son on his throne we don't mean
that we may go through a ceremony to put him on a literal throne. What
we really mean is that we're going to give him the power. When we put
someone on the throne we give him the power. The thing that thrilled me
was the fact that Jesus Christ Himself is called the throne. Now what
gendered this was that a long time ago, I think it was in Rotherham's
translation of the book of Hebrews that I found, where the Father is addressing
the Son, "Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever." Rotherham
said, "Thou art a throne forever and forever."(Heb. 1:8). This
quickened me though I didn't understand it. I looked for a corroborating
scripture in the O.T. to bear that out. Isaiah 22:23, I think, says that
He'll be a throne to his father's house. Jesus Christ is to be a throne,
the seat of power.
Read Psalm 72:17, first in the King James and then in the literal Hebrew,
"His name shall endure forever: his name shall be continued as long
as the sun: and men shall be blessed in him: all nations shall call Him
blessed." In the literal Hebrew it says, "He shall be as a son
to continue his father's name forever. " You see, Jesus represents
the Father eternally. Have you ever noticed when you're praying you start
out by being very orthodox, "O God, our Father,"'but pretty
soon, before you know it, you're saying, "Lord." Why? You can't
separate them.They're one. Now somebody said, "How can this be?"
Well, a human is like that. Let's take John Doe again. John Doe has a
Spirit. It's John. But John's saved. And he's more than John now. He has
another entity in there. He has the seed, the divine seed. Jesus is in
Him. But theBible says that whoever has the Son has the Father, so the
Father is in him. But he is also the temple of the Holy Ghost. Here we
have four spirits: the Holy Spirit, Jesus, the Father, and John. How many
persons do you see? One.
Does that mean that all of these other entities aren't there? No. You
know and I know that John can speak as John. And God can speak through
John, which is not quite the same. We see that in humans. When you see
Jesus you see the visible manifestation of the Godhead, but contained
in Him is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost according to the mystery
of theStar of David, (see exhibit C), two interlocking triangles representing
the throne of God and of the Lamb united. You cannot separate them. What
actually happened when Jesus died was that He went into the Godhead as
man, never to be separated any more. I don't understand this but I know
it's true. You can't separate God and the Son of God now. Jesus, though
He was man and though He ascended on high and though He had a body, flesh
and bones, He is so integrated into the Godhead now that there's no difference.
Jesus Christ now is seated at the right hand of the Father. And where
is the Father? Everywhere. Where is Jesus? Everywhere.You can't separate
them. No, not at all! Now if God wants to appear to you, He'll send the
Son, because the only one who can reveal God is the Son. "No man
knoweth...the Son, but theFather; neither knoweth any man the Father,
save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him." (Matt.
11:27). This is difficult for the human mind to grasp. I don't believe
it will satisfy your heart unless God gives you a revelation. You will
still have intellectual tie-ups, but the truth of this satisfies the heart.
This truth emphasizes the beauty of the Lord JesusChrist and the role
He plays. It also emphasizes the role of the Father, because when it's
all over God will be all-in-all. ( See I Cor. 15:28). And even Jesus Christ
the Son will be subject to Him. Yet, because He's subject to Him, God
gives Him the great honor of continuing His name forever as the Son. To
me this is marvelous. Now this isn't final; it's not that easy. But I
trust that we have said something that perhaps answers some questions
that you've had concerning the Godhead.
As an addition to my observations on the Godhead, I am including some
comments on certain specific questions addressed to me on this subject.
1. The Holy Spirit now is different from the Holy Spirit of the Old Testament.
The Holy Spirit of the Old Testament was the Spirit of God. But Jesus
said, "Unless I go away theComforter cannot come.'' Why?
Because the Comforter is both the Spirit of God and the Spirit of man.
In order for God to relate to humanity, He had to become man. Now I Cor.
2:11 begins to make sense. "For what man knoweth the things of man,
save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth
no man, but the Spirit of God." It takes the Spirit of God to reveal
the things of God, and it takes the spirit of man to reveal the things
of man. The Holy Spirit is capable of revealing both God and man to you.
Therefore He can be your Comforter, but He couldn't be that until after
Jesus died and the spirit of man, in Christ, united with theSpirit of
God. The Holy Spirit now is the spirit of the Son of man and the Spirit
of God. On the one hand He can reveal things that go wrong with you as
a human and the solutions; he also can reveal the things of God. That's
His role. The Spirit of God reveals the things of God and now also reveals
the things of man. You say, "He doesn't know what I'm going through."
TheBible says that Jesus was tempted on all points like as we, yet without
sin. When Jesus said,"Father, into Thy hands I commend My spirit,"
the spirit of the Son of man, as a man, united with God. The Holy Spirit
represents that union. There is now one mediator between God and men,
the man Christ Jesus. The Holy Spirit can make intercession for the saints
according to the will of God because He knows the will of God. He also
knows the needs of man. The two come together through the intercession.
2. How could Jesus, Son of God, say, "I can of mine own self do nothing?"
Because Jesus was speaking as man. Remember he said, " Touch me not,
for I have not yet ascended to my Father and your Father,..." (John
20:17a) Yet He accepted worship at one time.Why? He can't deny that He's
God. If Jesus were not God He could not accept worship. But He did. Furthermore,
he declared Himself to be God when He said, "I am" in the garden.
(When He said this the soldiers fell backward.). The same thing is true
of His temptation in the wilderness. God cannot be tempted, but Jesus
was. Why? Because He was one hundred percent man on the earth. How could
He be this? I don't know. But I think it's beautiful. How God could lay
aside His Deity for thirty-three and onehalf years, become total man,
and completely and totally lean upon God and the Holy Spirit? I don't
understand all this, but He did. That 's what makes Him so wonderful.
It's not just that God could become man. He did so in the Old Testament
. But this was different. God not only became man, revealing Himself in
human form, but that human had human limitations. God couldn't say, "All
power is given unto Me in heaven and earth." Jesus did. Why He didn't
receive this power as God, but as man. We call this earned Deity. Jesus
Christ, who was always God, laid aside His divinity to become man. Then
He earned the status of God because He overcame as a man. And God gave
Him all power in heaven and earth. He was inseparably united forever with
humanity as well as with divinity.
Jesus is visible. God the Father is not visible. I don't think you'll
ever see the Father except as He's revealed through Christ. As a matter
of fact, Sadhu Sundar Singh, the great holy man of India, in a vision
one day, was caught up in a trance. He saw Jesus seated on the throne
and felt a marvelous love coming from the throne. He turned to one of
the angels and asked, "Where's the Father?" The angel replied,
"You can't see the Father. He's invisible." Again he asked,
"What is this love that comes from Jesus on the throne?" The
angel replied, "That's the Holy Spirit."
3. I don't understand why Mary couldn't touch Jesus. "
She would have defiled Him. He evidently hadn't given the blood yet. That's
the only reason I can give you. He told them, didn't He, not to touch?
He couldn't be touchedat that time, but He came back later and could.
He ate fish. To me that is one of themost marvelous passages of scripture
in the whole Word of God. Jesus came back after He was risen, after He
had ascended to give the blood, and He said, "Have you here any meat?"
Then He ate fish and honey. (See Luke 24:41-43) I tell you, that's marvelous.
Another man said, "Let me see if I understand this. When Mary saw
Him at that time, He was still flesh and bone and blood, and He went to
heaven and came back?" No, I don't think so. There must have been
an intermediate state there because--well--I just don't know. Really,
when you stop to think about it, how marvelous the incarnation is, that
Jesus Christ, who was God, One with the Father, could become a seed, mix
with humanity, and be born just like any other child. He went through
the cradle experience, and circumcision. Marvelous. The whole thing, of
course, is mysterious, and all we have is just a little grasp of it. There
are a lot of blanks, and things I don't understand. But what it did for
me was to answer questions that I had about certain scriptures. For example,
one thing that bothered me was how Jesus could say, "my Father will
love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with Him."
Now I had been having a theological escape, which was, well, it's as if
He can come in but he's not really there. In other words, the inference
that was given me when I asked people questions was that here's the Father
out here somewhere, and here's the Son at His right hand. He's sort of
speaking on a microphone and it's as if He's here but He's not really
here. He's just talking from out there. And then I found the scriptures
which said that except Christ be in you, you'll be reprobate. The revelation
of the Son within Paul wasn't a revelation by proxy but a real revelation
of the Son. These are mysteries. I don't understand. But I know the Bible
says it's true. So I went as far as the Lord would permit. He didn't give
me anything else.
Jesus is twice firstborn. Colossians 1:15-18 says of Him: "Who is
the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by
him were all things created...And he is before all things, and by him
all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church; who is
the beginning, the firstborn from the dead." Now He's twice firstborn.
He's the firstborn of all creation, because He's the very beginning, the
Alpha. But He's the firstborn from the dead.That's in time. The beginning
of the Son of God is an eternal thing; you can't put time on it.But the
Father said, "this day have I begotten thee." (Heb. 1:5) And
this is proven by Acts13:30,33: "But God raised him from the dead:...God
hath fulfilled the same unto us..., in that he raised up Jesus again;
as it is also written in the second Psalm THOU ART MY SON, THIS DAY HAVE
I BEGOTTEN THEE." This makes that expression in the psalm, with Jesus
being raised from the dead, (in other words born out of the womb of death),
the firstborn from the dead. This fulfills the scripture that says, "this
day have I begotten thee." Along the same line,"...Thou art
a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek." (Heb. 5:6) When
did He becomea priest after the order of Melchizedek? When He died. This
would have been impossible when He walked the earth because He had an
earthly mother. One qualification of a Melchizedek priest was that he
was without a human father or mother. So when Jesus rose from the dead
His mother became death. Then He could be a Melchizedek priest. His priesthood
started with His death. The Aaronic priesthood ended with death, which
makes Jesus' priesthood different. His is an eternal priesthood. He's
a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek. I asked God one time,
"Why forever? What does a priest do?" "He represents us
to God." "Why does he continue? There will be a time when the
sin question is over." And God said, "Yes, but you need to know
more about Me." So the Son will exist as a Melchizedek priest to
reveal God to us. This revelation will take an eternity. Jesus is a priest
forever, not only representing us to God, but representing God to us.
You go through death, at water baptism, so that you can be raised from
the dead, in a figure. Then the Holy Spirit takes a lifetime to kill you
so that you can be raised from the dead actually. You cannot enter into
the new creation except through death. It's appointed unto man once to
die. You have to die, and you can take your pick. You can die quickly
or slowly. Some people don't want to die until they draw the last breath.
Other people have caught the vision and say, "Lord, just kill me
now so that when the time comes I won't even have to die, I will just
step in." Take your pick. You'll have to die some way. Actually,
Hebrews talks about the church of the Firstborns from the dead. (See Heb.
Christ is the firstfruit, thus becoming the federal head of the new creation.
This is the creation of the last Adam, not the first. There's a paradox.
He who created becomes the created in the new creation. "...; These
things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of
the creation of God;" (Rev. 3:14) I used to think this referred to
way back, but now I believe He's talking about Himself, Jesus Christ,
as the beginning of the new creation, the firstborn from among the dead.
I really believe that God wants to reveal Himself to the limit of our
capability, and He wantsus to deepen so that we can understand more. I
really believe that God wants to be more than just a mystical figure.
He wants to be intensely close to us, to unveil Himself to us as much
asHe can. We're just so limited! Our heads get in the way, and I believe
you cannot comprehend these things by your head. It's a heart thing. This
is what Paul meant when he said just before death, "...that I may
know him." (Phil. 3:10) He wanted to be more intimately connected
with the Lord Jesus. To the extent that you're connected with Jesus and
understand Him, you will understand the Father because the Son always
reveals the Father. Jesus will reveal the Father just as fast as you're
able to take it. There are yet little nuggets of truth relative to God
that will come from time to time as we seek His face. END