Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38 (IV)

*Below we conclude our exegetical series on Acts 2.38 in refutation to the charges of Edward Dalcour (see HERE ).  As  before, we have simply copied Mr. Dalcour’s claims in *bold black below and responded in *blue (as here) immediately following.  The first several excerpts are continued from Dr. Daniel Wallace as quoted by Dalcour in his original article.  Dalcour then continues his commentary as delineated below. 

*We will again note that we have repeatedly challenged Mr. Dalcour to a one-on-one formal debate regarding these dogmas.  After initially agreeing (two years ago now), he has subsequently ignored all debate offers.  It is a standing debate offer.  In the meantime, hopefully this article is edifying to the body of Christ.  Enjoy!  

The idea then would be, “Repent for/with reference to your sins, and let each one of you be baptized.…”  Such a view is an acceptable way of handling εἰς, but its subtlety and awkwardness are against it.

*Of course, we would agree with Dr. Wallace’s assertions that this would be an irresponsible way of exegeting the preposition εἰς in this text.  Again, Trinitarian grammarians such as Mantey, Robertson, et al. are renowned for inserting their theological preferences into the biblical data under the guise of exegesis.  Such is the case with the plainness and clear soteriological force of Acts 2.38.

4) Finally, it is possible that to a first-century Jewish audience (as well as to Peter), the idea of baptism might incorporate both the spiritual reality and the physical symbol.  In other words, when one spoke of baptism, he usually meant both ideas—the reality and the ritual.

*Oneness Pentecostals would agree with this assertion.  We cannot divorce the spiritual reality of the forgiveness of sins from the physical act of water baptism in Jesus’s name.  Indeed, the removal of sins is the very point of the ritual.

Peter is shown to make the strong connection between these two in chapters 10 and 11. In 11:15-16 he recounts the conversion of Cornelius and friends, pointing out that at the point of their conversion they were baptized by the Holy Spirit.

*It is amazing how Dalcour can actually endorse the biblical evidence for water and Spirit baptism in Jesus’s name “at the point of conversion” (as affirmed by Wallace above)—in a hit piece designed to deny the same!?  Acts 10-11 well demonstrates that a person is not “saved” when they merely believe in Christ since Cornelius already believed in Christ prior to Peter’s message (cf. Acts 10.37-38).  However, Cornelius had not yet been born again “of water and of the Spirit” (John 3.3-5; BLT).  {Note: it will not do for Dalcour to argue that John 3.5 does not refer to water baptism.  This is easily and quickly debunked grammatically, contextually and historically [deserving of an entirely different article].}

After he had seen this, he declared, “Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit…” (10:47).  The point seems to be that if they have had the internal testimony of the Holy Spirit via spiritual baptism, there ought to be a public testimony/acknowledgment via water baptism as well.

*Agreed—since it takes both elements to complete the new birth experience (John 3.3-8).

This may not only explain Acts 2:38 (viz., that Peter spoke of both reality and picture, though only the reality removes sins), but also why the NT speaks of only baptized believers (as far as we can tell):

*We would respectfully, yet strongly, disagree with this assertion.  Water and Spirit baptism in Jesus’s name was a necessary part of biblical salvation—and the proof texts that clearly demonstrate this are the very passages being discussed!  We are reminded of when Jesus—who was “the truth” (John 14.6)—stood before Pilate who asked Him, “What is truth?” (John 18.38). 

*That is, Truth literally personified was right before Pilate’s eyes – and yet he was still searching for “truth!”  So it is with agenda-driven Trinitarian apologists like Dalcour.  Truth regarding biblical salvation stares them right in the eyes—and they still refuse to acknowledge that truth.  One would think that they would take eternity seriously and tremble at God’s saving instructions.

Water baptism is not a cause of salvation, but a picture; and as such it serves both as a public acknowledgment (by those present) and a public confession (by the convert) that one has been Spirit-baptized.

*We have repeatedly affirmed that water baptism apart from genuine faith is meaningless.  Conversely, saving faith apart from water baptism in Jesus’s name is equally futile according to Scripture (e.g., cf. James 2 cited in this series below).  Hence, we would strongly disagree that water baptism is merely a “public confession that one has been Spirit baptized.”  Indeed, the Samaritans had been water baptized in Jesus’s name, but had not yet received the baptism of the Holy Spirit.  This well demonstrates that one does not automatically receive the Holy Spirit upon belief, confession and water baptism in Jesus’s name.

The Holy Spirit had not yet come upon any of them, for they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.” (Acts 8.16; NLT)

*Further, the biblical presentation of genuine Spirit baptism is accompaniment of speaking in other tongues “as the Spirit gave them utterance” (Acts 2.4).  Indeed, the Jews who went with the Apostle Peter to Cornelius’s house knew that Spirit baptism had truly occurred on the Gentiles:

For (note the inferential conjunction γὰρ) they were hearing them speaking in tongues” (Acts 10.46; [cf. John 3.8]).

In sum, although Mantey’s instincts were surely correct that in Luke’s theology baptism was not the cause of salvation, his ingenious solution of a causal εἰς lacks conviction.

*We would turn this assertion on its head and state the polar opposite.  Clearly water baptism was a necessary part of Lukan soteriology.  Indeed, it is Luke who observes:

But the Pharisees and experts in the law rejected God’s purpose for themselves, because they had not been baptized by John.  (Luke 7.30; BSB)

*As we have established in this series we would agree that Dr. Mantey’s argumentation for the supposed causal force of εἰς in Acts 2.38 flows out of a presupposed theological commitment and not the actual biblical data standing alone.  As well substantiated by Greek linguists above – if the inspired grammar is allowed to stand on its own merit the alleged causal interpretation of this preposition will never fly.

There are other ways for us to satisfy the tension, but adjusting the grammar to answer a backward-looking ‘Why?’ has no more basis than the notion that εἰς ever meant mere representation.”

*This is a very good point by Dr. Wallace.  Well stated!

*As we conclude our investigation into the Greek preposition “eis” in Acts 2.38—and since Trinitarians like Dalcour are fond of appealing to these same lexical authorities in John 1.1, 17.5, et al.—let’s see how these selfsame linguists view the prepositional phrase “for the forgiveness of sins” in this verse shall we?  Surely Trinitarian apologists will accept these lexical authorities in this passage also—right?

*(Exegetical Dictionary of the [Greek] NT;  Vol. 1-3):  b) With abstract nouns, to/for to indicate purpose:  εἰς μαρτύριον, “as a witness” (esp. common in the Synoptics); as a memorial (Mark 14:9 par.);  as a demonstration (Rom 3:25); for the glory of God (15:7);  for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38).

*(BDAG):  εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν for forgiveness of sins, so that sins might be forgiven Mt 26:28; cp. Mk 1:4; Lk 3:3; Ac 2:38.

*(Louw & Nida Greek-English Lexicon Based on Semantic Domains):  84.16 εἰς (1) extension toward a special goal – to, toward, in the direction of.  [a] ἤρχοντο εἰς τὸ μνημει̂ον they went to the tomb JHN.20:3 ὅτε ἤγγισαν εἰς Ιεροσόλυμα as they drew near to Jerusalem MAT.21:1.

*(Meyer’s NT [Exegetical] Commentary):  εἰς denotes the object of the baptism, which is the remission of the guilt contracted in the state before μετάνοια.  Comp. Acts 22:16; 1 Corinthians 6:11.

*(Discovery Study Bible;  Drs. Gary Hill & Gleason Archer):  eis (a preposition) – properly, into (unto) – literally, “motion into which” implying penetration (“unto,” “union”) to a particular purpose or result.

*(Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon):  eis aphesin hamartion, to obtain the forgiveness of sins.

*In his discussion of Acts 2.38 esteemed grammarian Dr. Ceslas Spicq noted:

Water baptism is a means of realizing this conversion, and its goal — something altogether new — is a washing, “the remission of sins” (Theological Lexicon of the New Testament, Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1994, Vol. 1, 242).

*And the list goes on and on!

(Dalcour):  Final thoughts:  the fundamental problem with the groups who embrace baptismal regeneration is that their view challenges Paul’s main thesis that “God credits righteousness apart from works” (Rom. 4:6) and justification is through faith (sole instrument) alone (not by works).

*Baptism in Jesus’s name no more makes water the savior than the man preaching the gospel makes the minister the savior of his audience.  And, clearly a person needs to hear the gospel to be saved!

*Since Dalcour is quoting from Romans above perhaps he should keep reading:

Or do you not know that as many as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?  Therefore we have been buried with him through baptism into death, in order that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too may live a new life.  (Romans 6.3-4; NET)

How are they to call on one they have not believed in?  And how are they to believe in one they have not heard of?  And how are they to hear without someone preaching to them (**Note:  Will Mr. Dalcour be consistent and say that the effort of “preaching” the gospel is a “work” also?)?  (Romans 10.14; NET)

*Further, as pointed out above, (i) Oneness Pentecostals do not teach baptismal regeneration since there is much more to salvation than water baptism standing alone, (ii) the Apostle Paul – to whom Dalcour appeals – was water baptized in Jesus’s name for the express purpose of washing away his sins (Acts 22.16) and spoke in tongues upon his reception of the Holy Spirit (cf., e.g., I Corinthians 14.18).

*Hence, Dalcour appeals to a writer (Paul) who had already experienced the very phenomenon that he is warring against (cf., e.g., Acts 19.1-6; I Corinthians 1.13; Romans 6.3; Galatians 3.27)!  This is the very thing that Dalcour lectures Oneness believers for doing when they quote a Trinitarian academic.  But, as noted, such unequal scales is vintage Dalcour.

(Dalcour):  Although the “work” of water baptism is a biblical commandment, it is a work that man does.

*This is an unwarranted assumption.  God is the One who washes away our sins when we obey His “biblical commandment.”  Since Dalcour is forced to concede above that water baptism is indeed a “biblical commandment”—perhaps he will heed the Apostle John’s warning (since he stubbornly rejects ours):

Now by this we know that we have come to know God:  if we keep his commandments.  The one who says “I have come to know God” and yet does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in such a person.  But whoever obeys his word, truly in this person the love of God has been perfected.  By this we know that we are in him.  (I John 2.3-5; NET)

*Strong words indeed!  In sum, God is the One who does the “work” of forgiving our sins when we obey His command to be baptized in His saving name (Acts 4.12)—just as He does the same “work” when we repent.

(Dalcour):  It does not contribute in any way, shape, or form to the atoning work of God the Son (gospel), which is the very ground (cause) of justification.

*There is no such definitive identification of Jesus as “God the Son” (Dalcour need not appeal to the meaningful and viable variant in John 1.18).  The Son of God (not “God the Son”) is forever the sole God of the biblical data enfleshed for the redemption of mankind.

(Dalcour):  So Paul says to the Corinthian church:  “For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel. . . .” (1 Cor. 1:17).    

*As noted above, the original recipients of Paul’s letter would have already read the rhetorical question:

Is Christ divided?  Paul wasnʼt crucified for you, was he?  Or were you in fact baptized in the name of Paul?  (1.13)

*As the New International Greek Testament Commentary notes:

Schnackenburg concludes that 1 Cor 1:13 and 1:15 should both be translated “in the name” since what is at issue is an “immediate relation to Christ himself” in 1:13, and by implication an immediate relation to Paul in 1:15.  He paraphrases the passage: “Christ is undivided. . . .Christ alone died for you. . . . You belong to Christ alone. . . .You were baptized in the name of Christ (and in the name of no other).

*UBS Handbook for New Testament Translators;  I Corinthians 1.13:

Baptism, from the earliest times, involved literally naming the name of Christ (see Matt 28.19 for a command from Christ that uses the formula “in the name” in both RSV and TEV).  GeCL has a note on the word “name ” in its glossary.  It says, “with this naming of the name, the person baptized is given over to belong to Jesus, his LORD, and is placed under Christ’s protection.

*Of course, we could continue ad nauseum with quotations from honest grammarians on this passage (which Dalcour has conveniently omitted from his audiences consideration) that speak to the fact that the entire Corinthian church was baptized in Jesus name!  Indeed, if water baptism in Jesus’s name is not a part of the Christian initiation process why does Paul mention various inflections of the verb translated “baptize(d)” (βαπτίζω) six times in opening chapter of his letter?  Clearly water baptism in Jesus name was a part of the new birth experience—despite how hard Dalcour campaigns against that saving name.  

*Paul’s point was that—due to current factions in Corinth—no one could charge him with attempting to begin his own following.  From this perspective Paul reminds them that he was not crucified for them, nor were they baptized in his name.  His contention was that into whose name someone is baptized—this is the same person they are following.  Hence, how can someone call themselves “Christians” when they reject and fight against this same name at baptism (contrary to the Apostles and every NT instances)?

*As Grimm-Thayer’s Greek-English lexicon says of this passage:  “to administer the rite of ablution.”  Paul’s emphasis was on who administered this salvific rite—not a denigration of the sacrament itself.  This is well confirmed by the following quote from the New International Greek Testament Commentary:

Since baptism and the Lord’s Supper also, for Paul, proclaim the gospel of Christ’s death and resurrection (Rom 6:3-11; 1 Cor 11:24-27), the contextual meaning of βαπτίζειν has been conveyed by translating it “to perform baptisms,” with its emphasis on ministerial agency.  (I Cor. 1.17)

*As esteemed grammarian Dr. Kenneth Wuest renders this portion of the verse in his Expanded Translation of the New Testament:

 for Christ did not send me on a mission to be a baptizer but to be a bringer of good news…(I Corinthians 1.17).

*Paul continues, “I thank God that I did not baptize any of you except Crispus and Gaius, so that no one can say that you were baptized in my name!”  Whose name then was the Corinthian church baptized in?  The answer is obvious to the honest seeker for biblical truth.

*In summary, we have combined the corroborative evidence of literally hundreds of linguists in this expositional series—all of whom adamantly reject and deny the “causative” force of the prepositional phrase “for the forgiveness of sins” in Acts 2.38.  Not only this, but they also each openly affirm that this Greek phrase demands a “purpose clause.”  In no forensics-proper setting would a defendant be exonerated if hundreds of experts all testified to the identical conclusion.  Thus, the charges leveled at Acts 2.38 from Mr. Dalcour demand a “not guilty” verdict from the jury that is factual-centered!

*That is, exegetically, the Greek phrase translated “for the forgiveness of sins” in this soteriological context dictates that water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ is the prerequisite for one’s sins to be forgiven.  This is simply the natural conclusion of the inspired grammar when it is allowed to stand on its own merit—unaided by religiosity.

*Finally, we sincerely hope and pray that—in the fear of God’s Word—Mr. Dalcour and other Trinitarians will exchange their religious tradition(s) for NT biblical salvation – just as they did in Acts 2.38!  Please feel free to contact us in the comment section for further information or prayer.  We are here to serve you.  Thank you for reading and God bless!

Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38 (III)

*Below we offer the third installment of our tetralogy toward Edward Dalcour’s criticisms of Oneness Pentecostal’s obedience to the plain language of Acts 2.38.  As before, we have simply copied Mr. Dalcour’s article in *bold black – with our rebuttals immediately following in *blue (as here).  Corroboration of Dalcour’s original article can be viewed HERE.

(Dalcour):  But keep in mind there is at least four different interpretations of Acts 2:38.  Mantey believed that a salvation by grace would be violated if a causal eis were not evident in such passages as Acts 2:38.

*This is a direct confession from Dalcour that Mantey’s theology dictated his grammatical assertions—not vice versa!  Of course, Oneness believers have always known this about most (albeit not all) Trinitarian exegetes.

*In his mammoth work (referenced in our previous post) Acts, An Exegetical Commentary, Vol. 1-4, footnote #1233—while discussing the purpose of baptism in Acts 2.38—Dr. Craig Keener affirms:

E.g., McIntyre, “Baptism and Forgiveness” (some of whose other points are stronger), cites the rule of concord to separate baptism and forgiveness in Acts 2:38, but Camp, “Reexamining Concord,” responds that ἕκαστος can serve as a plural pronoun.  Grammar alone will not easily decide the theological point here.  That εἰς in 2:38 may mean “for the purpose of” (cf., e.g., Dana and Mantey, Grammar, 104, §111.i) is far likelier than Mantey’s theologically determined “because of” (see Wallace, Grammar, 369–71, following Marcus, “Eis”; idem, “Elusive eis,” 44; against Mantey, “Causal Use of eis”; “Eis Again”).  Moule, Idiom Book, 70, has “with a view to, or resulting in.”

*Indeed, as most exegetes affirm, Acts 2.38 reflects the culmination and fulfillment of Peter’s eschatological quote from Joel (cf. Joel 2.32; Acts 2.21).  Simply, the end time outpouring of God’s Holy Spirit reaches its zenith in 2.38.  In sharp contrast to Dalcour’s claims above, Keener continues:

For Luke, however, baptism is not dissociated from repentance but constitutes an act of repentance; under normal circumstances, one does not separate the two (Luke 3:3; Acts 13:24; 19:4)…preaching repentance in Jesus’s name (ἐίὶ τῷ ὀνόματι, 24:47) is concretely expressed by summoning the repentant to baptism in Jesus’s name (ἐίὶ τῷ ὀνόματι, Acts 2:38), and baptism figuratively “washes away sins” (22:16)…the “primitive” Jerusalem church used baptism in Jesus’s name for converts to its sect, in the process likely affirming Jesus’s lordship.  (Keener; Acts; Ibid.)

(Dalcour):  This way of handling the text is also concurred by one of the world’s premium and most quoted NT Greek grammarians A. T. Robertson:

My view is decidedly against the idea that Peter, Paul, or any one in the NT taught baptism as essential to the remission of sins or the means of securing such remission.  So I understand Peter to be urging baptism on each of them who had already turned (repented) and for it to be done in the name of Jesus Christ on the basis of the forgiveness of sins which they had already received” (Word Pictures, 3:35-36).

*Note above Robertson’s concessions of “My view” and “So I understand.”  Once again we have another Trinitarian scholar interpreting the inspired grammar through the lenses of his theological commitments.  Will Dalcour equally allow Oneness believers to quote one another like this in buttressing their theological conclusions?  Me-thinks not!

*More importantly, Dalcour here lives up to his solid reputation for partial quotations (cf. his partial quote of scholar Murray Harris in his debate with Steven Ritchie).  Dalcour practices such source abuse at virtually every page of his book—and he’s back at it above with this quote from Dr. A.T. Robertson!  Here’s what Dalcour omits from “one of the world’s premium NT Greek grammarians:”

One will decide the use here according as he believes that baptism is essential to the remission of sins or not (Word Pictures in the New Testament, Volume III, The Acts of the Apostles [Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1930], pp. 35-36).

*Amazingly (albeit not surprisingly), this sentence appears immediately above Dalcour’s selected (partial) quotation!  Mind-boggling.

*Incidentally, since Dalcour often makes an issue over the various prepositions used in the phrase “in the name of Jesus” in the baptismal accounts (ἐπὶ, ἐν, εἰς)—and while he is quoting Robertson here—perhaps Dalcour will accept Robertson here also (esp. since it appears on the same page!):

No distinction is to be insisted on between ei to onoma and en twi onomati with baptizw since ei and en are really the same word in origin.

*Keener remarks, “Luke’s particular expression varies: is one baptized ἐίί Jesus’s name (as here), εἰς his name (8:16; 19:5), or ἐν his name (10:48)?  But εἰς and ἐν tended to merge in Koine, so that (in contrast to classical Greek) εἰς with the accusative no longer necessarily implied movement.  Luke was probably unconcerned with the preposition; “what mattered was the name (see 3:6, 16; 8:12).

(Dalcour):  There is also another grammatical aspect to be considered.  There is a shift from second person plural to third person singular and back to second person plural.

*As we demonstrate below, this age-old evasion tactic does absolutely nothing to lessen the fatal blow of Acts 2.38 to Trinitarian (esp. Reform) soteriology.  Below, Mr. Dalcour largely parrot’s Cal Beisner’s polemic against Oneness believers.

*Dr. Daniel Segraves has gently laid most of these assertions in their coffin where they rightly belong HERE, HERE, and see also an interesting article by Jason Dulle HERE.  

(Dalcour):  Notice below:

2.  The verb “repent” (metanoēsate) is second person plural and is in the active voice.

3.  And “be baptized” (baptisthētō) is third person singular and is in the passive voice.

4.  The Greek pronoun translated “your” (humōn) is in a second person plural.

*What Trinitarian apologists overlook with this attempted dodge is that Peter addressed the entirety of his saving instructions to “them” (2.38a)—the third person plural pronoun αὐτούς.  That is, the Apostle Peter’s mandates for salvation were directed to the whole listening audience—not merely a “single” person.  Of course, this is demonstrated in the fact that three thousand obeyed these saving instructions and were baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (that’s a little more than a “single” listener!).

*If Dalcour (again, borrowing from Beisner) emphasizes the third person singular of the imperative mood (cf. aorist tense import) verb translated “be baptized” (βαπτισθήτω)—equal exegetical scales will render the same attention to the third person plural pronoun αὐτούς to whom the third person singular verb “be baptized” was addressed!

*Exegetically, a significant variant appears with the second person plural pronoun ὑμῶν (“your”) that Dalcour marshals in his (cf. Beisner) list above.  Dr. Segraves notes:

The Textus Receptus (Received Text), upon which the King James Version and the New King James Version are based, does not include the second “your” (humon), nor does the Majority Text.  The critical text followed by most modern English translations does include the second “your” in the phrase “for the remission of your sins.”  This is interesting, for the critical text usually prefers the shorter reading.  In this case, the longer reading is adopted by the critical text on the view that the shorter reading (without the second “your”) is “conformation to the solemn formula of the Gospels, not an original shorter reading” (see Bruce M. Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament [Stuttgart: United Bible Societies, Corrected Edition, 1975], 301).

*(See the critical apparatus for NA28:  των αμαρτιων [+ημων C] C 1175¦txt א‎ A B 81 t w vg.)

(Dalcour):  Therefore, the grammatical connection is: “repent” (active plural) with “your” (active plural) as in “for the remission of your [humōn] sins” and not “be baptized” (passive singular) with “for the remission of your sins.”

*Contrary to the volumes of linguists above—Dalcour presumes he sees something here that they all apparently missed!  The Greek verb rendered “be baptized” appears in the passive voice simply because the subject is passive—contra active (e.g., repentance)—in the act of water baptism.

*The reason the verb βαπτισθήτω (“be baptized”) is singular is because the grammatical subject is the masculine singular ἕκαστος, translated “each.”  Since this is a nominative singular third person reference it throws the verb of which it’s the subject into the 3rd person singular.  It’s simple grammatical concord.

*The first ὑμῶν (“of you”) modifies ἕκαστος as a partitive genitive, lit., “each one of you.”  It’s simply a stronger way of stating the imperative (command).  Instead of the simple βαπτίσθητε, “be baptized,” the Apostle Peter particularizes the subject and emphasizes the “you” individually.  In this way, baptism in Jesus name uniquely personalized the experience to each convert.  In sum, Dalcour’s point is—well, pointless!

*Further, as intimated above, does Dalcour seriously (mis)interpret the singular number to mean that only a single person obeyed Peter’s instructions at Pentecost?  If so, how does he square his misapplication of the singular number with the fact that, “those (masculine plural οἱ) who received his word were baptized (3rd person plural, ἐβαπτίσθησαν), and there were added that day about three thousand souls.” (Acts 2.41)?  Has Dalcour never heard of the “collective singular” in Greek?  Apparently not!  

(Dalcour):  Moreover, the same wording “for the remission of your sins” is used in reference to John’s baptism (cf. Luke 3:3; Mark 1:4) and that baptism did not save, it was a preparatory baptism and of the coming Messiah and a call to repentance, as we will deal with below.

*Actually, the passages mentioned by Dalcour above referring to John’s baptism are not syntactically parallel (an argument Dalcour makes regarding John 10.30 in cf. Revelation 21.22).  The prepositional phrase in Acts 2.38 is εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν.  In the passages above the prepositional phrase is εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν.  There is no articular noun in either Luke 3.3 or Mark 1.4 in the Greek text as there is in Acts 2.38.  While the meaning does not hinge either way on the anarthrous or articular noun rendered “sins”—still, this once again demonstrates Mr. Dalcour’s typically shoddy exegesis.

*Moreover, Dalcour actually makes our very point above.  Indeed, it is mind-boggling how someone can actually appeal to the very verses that show baptism is “for forgiveness of sins” only to deny what the very text before his eyes states!  If sins are remitted or forgiven at water baptism in the preparatory stage of the kingdom of God – how much more in its fulfillment?  There is no reason to convolute the plain biblical testimony: sins are forgiven at repentance and water baptism—period.

(Dalcour):  An additional view, however, is that baptism represents both the spiritual reality and the ritual which is an acceptable view that works well in the scope of the context.

*Here Dalcour borrows from Dr. Daniel Wallace in his groundbreaking work Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics.  We would whole-heartedly agree with this assertion.  We cannot segregate the internal prompting of faith from the external outworking of the same.

(Dalcour):  Notwithstanding the different shades of interpretation, which in fact do not contradict, but only enhance—they are all in accord with good exegesis.

*Agreed—although below Dalcour abandons “good exegesis!”

(Dalcour):  Contrary to the UPCI position, which violates not only the theology in Acts (e.g., 10:43) but also the entire theology of the NT (e.g., John 6:47; Rom. 4:4ff.; Gal. 2:16).

*Actually, as shown elsewhere on this blog (see below), it is Dalcour who repeatedly violates biblical soteriology and theology – and he is back at it here!  Overhead Dalcour appeals to Acts 10.43, John 6.47, Romans 4.4 and Galatians 2.16.  Let’s examine the context of each reference below.  First, Acts 10 (referenced above) concludes with:

…the gift of the Holy Spirit has been poured out even upon the Gentiles.  For they were hearing them speaking in tongues and magnifying God.  (v. 46)

Then Peter answered, “Is anyone able to withhold the water to baptize these who have received the Holy Spirit, just as we also have?”  And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.  (vv. 47-48)

*Significantly, this is where the church in Rome (that Dalcour appeals to above) was planted—with the Roman centurion named Cornelius (cf., Acts 10.1; NLT).  So that when we get to Paul’s letter to Rome, he is addressing those who have already been water and Spirit baptized in Jesus’ name from Acts 10 (cf. Romans 6.1-4, 8.9-11).  Note also that the law of prepositions demands an oral invocation of the name referenced, viz., Jesus Christ.

*John was a tongue talker who baptized in Jesus’ name (cf. Acts 1.13; Acts 8.14-16).  Further, John is clear that one must be born again “out of” water and the Holy Spirit (John 3.3-5).  Similarly, Galatians 3.27 (which see) is clear that the entire church in Galatia was already water and Spirit baptized.  Hence, in the final analysis either or both the senders and recipients of these letters were water baptized in Jesus’ name and had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit as evidenced by speaking in other tongues.  

(Dalcour):  Lastly, in Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics, foremost Greek scholar Daniel Wallace provides insightful comments regarding the four main interpretations of Acts 2:38:

*Note:  For the sake of clarity the following portion of Dalcour’s article is copied from Wallace’s work—hence Dr. Wallace is the speaker below.

Causal εἰς [eis, “for”] in Acts 2:38?  An interesting discussion over the force of εἰς took place several years ago, especially in relation to Acts 2:38.  The text reads as follows:

Πέτρος δὲ πρὸς αὐτούς Μετανοήσατε, φησίν καὶ βαπτισθήτω ἕκαστος ὑμῶν ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ὑμῶν. . . . (“And Peter said to them, “Repent, and be baptized—each one of you—at the name of Jesus Christ because of/for/unto the forgiveness of your sins…”).

*I would just point out that no reputable translation has adopted Dr. Wallace’s rendering of Acts 2.38 above (e.g., see HERE).  Indeed, the Greek prepositional phrase translated “in the name of Jesus Christ” is literally ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ.  I do understand that when ἐπὶ governs a dative case noun (such as here) “at” is a perfectly fine rendering.  I just find it unnecessary to exchange the normative transcription of “upon” or “in” for the awkward and wooden “at.”

On the one hand, J. R. Mantey argued that εἰς could be used causally in various passages in the NT, among them Matt 3:11 and Acts 2:38.  It seems that Mantey believed that a salvation by grace would be violated if a causal εἰς was not evident in such passages as Acts 2:38.

*As has been noted by many, Dr. Mantey allowed his theological presuppositions to interfere with his exegesis—as do many contemporary Trinitarian apologists.

On the other hand, Ralph Marcus questioned Mantey’s non-biblical examples of a causal εἰς so that in his second of two rejoinders he concluded (after a blow-by-blow refutation):  “It is quite possible that εἷς is used causally in these NT passages but the examples of causal εἰς cited from non-biblical Greek contribute absolutely nothing to making this possibility a probability.”

If, therefore, Professor Mantey is right in his interpretation of various NT passages on baptism and repentance and the remission of sins, he is right for reasons that are non-linguistic.  Marcus ably demonstrated that the linguistic evidence for a causal εἷς fell short of proof.

 *This is the general consensus of NT linguists as demonstrated above.

If a causal εἷς is not in view, what are we to make of Acts 2:38?

*This is where theological commitments begin to take over from Trinitarians.  What we are to make of Acts 2.38 is precisely what it makes of itself!  When taken holistically, biblical salvation consists of faith, repentance from sin, water and Spirit baptism in the name of Jesus Christ and walking in a resurrected life of a new existence in Christ (i.e., love and holiness).  There is simply no other recognized salvation if the scriptures are allowed to speak uninterrupted—as in this passage.

There are at least four other interpretations of Acts 2:38.  1) The baptism referred to here is physical only, and εἰς has the meaning of for or unto.  Such a view, if this is all there is to it, suggests that salvation is based on works.

*No one I know confesses that the “physical” water apart from inward-working faith constitutes salvation.  This is a straw man argument.

The basic problem of this view is that it runs squarely in the face of the theology of Acts, namely:  (a) repentance precedes baptism (cf. Acts 3:19; 26:20), and (b) salvation is entirely a gift of God, not procured via water baptism (Acts 10:43 [cf. v 47]; 13:38-39, 48; 15:11; 16:30-31; 20:21; 26:18).

*I would turn this assertion completely upside down:  The view that salvation in Acts is achieved through repentance alone runs polar opposite of the actual data itself.  The Jews in chapter 2, the eunuch and Samaritans in chapter 8, the gentiles in chapter 10 (cf. 11.14), Lydia and her house, the Philippian jailer in chapter 16, the disciples of John the Baptist in chapter 19, the Apostle Paul in chapter 22—all met a uniform new birth experience of water and Spirit baptism in Jesus’ name!

*Further, although we certainly agree that salvation is a gift of God—does this mean that a person does not have to believe in Jesus nor repent (since Dr. Wallace has appealed to repentance in Acts above) to be saved?  As mentioned above, the same book of Acts specifically identifies repentance as “works” (ἔργα πράσσοντας; Acts 26.20), yet never labels water baptism as the same.  If we can ignore the command to be baptized in Jesus name consistency demands that we can equally disregard faith in Christ, repentance from sin, etc.   

2) The baptism referred to here is spiritual only.  Although such a view fits well with the theology of Acts, it does not fit well with the obvious meaning of “baptism” in Acts—especially in this text (cf. 2:41).

*Agreed. Significantly, the initial converts to the church were water and Spirit baptized in Jesus’ name.  Clearly there is not one plan of salvation in church history and another design in these “last days” (Acts 2.17).  This is particularly evident when one considers that the Apostle Peter applied Acts 2.38 to Joel’s eschatological prophecy of “in the last days” (which obviously still applies).  That is, the way the first person got in the NT church is the same manner that the last person will enjoy entrance into the NT church.  The “last day” of the Christian initiation experience will be just like the first day!

3) The text should be repunctuated in light of the shift from second person plural to third person singular back to second person plural again.  If so, it would read as follows:  “Repent, and let each one of you be baptized at the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins. . . .”

*And yet no reputable translation—combining hundreds of NT Greek linguists—has adopted such a rendering (see HERE).  As a Greek professor once admonished me, “Anytime you espouse a translation of any given text that no one else has selected – you are likely mistranslating the passage due to a doctrinal bias.”  Such is the case with Trinitarians such as Dalcour, et al.

If this is the correct understanding, then εἰς is subordinate to Μετανοήσατε alone, rather than to βαπτισθήτω.

*As our sentence diagram below demonstrates, the prepositional phrase εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ὑμῶν (lit., “for forgiveness of the sins your”) is directly subordinate to βαπτισθήτω (“be baptized”) which has the prepositional phrase ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ (“upon the name of Jesus Christ”) immediately supporting this verb (“be baptized”).  This is simply the most straightforward and normative exegesis of this passage.  

Acts 2.38

*We will continue our series on Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38 in our next installment.  Thank you for reading!

Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38 (II)

*Below we continue our exegetical refutations toward the efforts of Edward Dalcour to attack Oneness Pentecostals and deny biblical salvation as per the plain reading of Acts 2.38.  Dalcour’s original piece can be found HERE.  In this post we continue with direct quotations of Greek linguists who adamantly reject Dalcour’s “causal” eisegesis of the phrase rendered “for the forgiveness of sins” in Acts 2.38.  We hope you enjoy part II of this IV part series on Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38!

*First, one will note in our continued list of scholars below that not a single one of them identify theologically as Oneness Pentecostal.  Hence they have no doctrinal agenda and are only stating the grammatical facts.  Again, we have left the CAPS just as they were sent to us:

1. Professor Tyler (Amherst College, Mass.):  “I shall translate Acts 2:38 liberally, thus:  ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in (or on) the name of Jesus Christ unto remission of sins.’  The preposition eis seems to denote the object and end of the two verbs which precede [it] in the imperative.  In other words, REMISSION OF SINS IS THE OBJECT AND END RESULT of repentance and baptism.”

2. Professor H.C. Cameron (Princeton College, NJ):  “The preposition eis in Acts 2:38 is evidently used in its final sense; and the phrase is clearly connected with metanoeesate kai baptistheeti (repent and be baptized), AS THE END TO WHICH REPENTANCE AND BAPTISM IN THE NAME OF JESUS CHRIST LED.”

3.  Professor Packard (Yale College, Conn.):  “My own impression (to give it for what it is worth) is that I should translate it, if these words occurred in Plato, for instance, TO THE END OF REMISSION OF SINS, it would then make ‘aphesis hamartion’ AN OBJECT AIMED AT, OR A RESULT ATTAINED BY THE ACTS DENOTED BY THE VERBS.”

4. Professor Foster (Colby University, Maine):  “Without a special examination of the passage in connection with others in which like expressions occur, I should say that the word here has the force of ‘unto,’ ‘in order to,’ ‘for the sake of,’ INDICATING A RESULT TO BE ATTAINED.”

5. Professor D’Ooge (Ann Arbor University, Mich.):  “In reply to your inquiry, I would say that in my judgment the preposition eis, in the verse referred to (Acts 2:38), expresses THE RELATION OF AIM OR END IN VIEW, answering the question eis ti (for what?), and to be translated by ‘unto,’ ‘in order to,’ ‘for.’  This sense of eis, as you doubtless know, is recognized by Liddell & Scott for classical; and by Winder, for New Testament (Koine’) usage.”

6. Professor Flagg (Cornell University, NY):  “In answer to your inquiry about the force of the preposition eis in the passage of the New Testament to which you refer (Acts 2:38), I should say that IT DENOTED INTENTION OR PURPOSE, ‘with a view to,’ much as if it had been written, ‘SO AS TO OBTAIN REMISSION OF SINS’.”

7. Professor Proctor (Dartmouth College, NH):  “It is my opinion that eis is to be connected with both the predicates, and that IT DENOTES AN OBJECT OR END IN VIEW.”

8. Professor Harkness (Brown University, RI):  “In my opinion eis in Acts 2:38 DENOTES PURPOSE, and may be rendered in order to, or FOR THE PURPOSE OF SECURING, or, as in our English version, ‘for’.”

9. Professor T.D. Seymour (Yale College):  “I do not remember any passage in which eis could properly be translated ‘because of.’  I am not sure that I understand your second question; as I understand it, I should say that EIS IS NEVER RETROSPECTIVE, it always implies that the person or thing or act concerned is turned toward the thing which follows eis.”

10. Professor W.W. Goodwin (Harvard):  “In reply to your first question I must say that I cannot conceive of any expression in which eis would be properly translated ‘because of.’  To your second question I should say that I DO NOT SEE HOW EIS CAN EVER BE RETROSPECTIVE.”

11. Professor John H. Wheeler (University of Virginia):  “It seems to me in either language (i.e., Greek or English) THE REMISSION OF SINS IS SOMETHING TO WHICH THE ONE WHO IS BAPTIZED IS TO LOOK FORWARD – he is to be baptized AS A MEANS OF PROCURING THAT REMISSION.”

12. Professor Chas. F. Smith (Vanderbilt):  “I do not doubt that eis in Acts 2:38 means ‘unto’ and is prospective.”

13. Dr. Williams, translator of The Williams Testament affirms that this preposition (εἰς) used in Acts 2.38 “is always prospective.”

*Professional grammarians from Princeton, Yale, Harvard, Dartmouth, Ann Arbor and Cornell Universitiesbut still not convinced?  The following is a list of Greek linguists who commented on Acts 2.38 and the meaning of baptism “for (eis) the forgiveness of sins.”  Again, we point out that the following grammarians do not identify theologically as Oneness Pentecostal (nor CofC).  That is, they have no prior theological commitments or presuppositions to this end.  They are only affirming the actual grammatical data.  (For corroboration cf. their works.):

1. Winer, Greek scholar, Winer’s New Testament Grammar:  “the purpose and end in view.”

2.  J.W. Willmarth, Baptist scholar:  “unto, in order to.”

3. Hackett, Baptist scholar, referring to Acts 22.16, “states a result of baptism, answers ‘for the remission of sins’ in Acts 2.38, i.e., submit to the rite in order to forgiveness.”

4. Meyer “denotes object of baptism which is the remission of the guilt contracted in the state before μετάνοια.  Comp. Acts 22.16 and I Cor. 6.11.

5. Daniel Penick, professor of classical languages at the University of Texas:  “‘eis’ always looks forward and I know of no case in the New Testament where it looks back.”

6. C.B. Williams (Baptist):  “eis is always prospective.”  His translation: “that you may have your sins forgiven.”

7. J.P. Lange (Lutheran theologian): “eis shows the immediate purpose of baptism.”

8.  Hermann Olshausen:  “baptism is accompanied with the remission of sins.”

9. C.H. Morgan (Baptist), Dean of Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary:  “I do not know of any recognized Greek lexicon which gives to ‘eis’ the meaning of ‘because of’.”

10. W.R. Harper, Professor at Chicago University:  “unto, i.e., in order to secure.”

11. Seth J. Axtell (Baptist), Professor of Greek Literature:  “unto, for, in order to, with a view to, denotes the object or end toward which the action expressed by the predicate verbs was to be directed.”  (*Note:  What happened to Dalcour’s emphasis on “exegesis” in Acts 2.38?)

12. S.H. Butcher (Presbyterian), Professor of Greek:  “expresses the end toward which the action tends.”

13. I. Bywater, Professor of Greek:  “expresses the end or purpose to be attained: to the end that your sins may be remitted.”

14. H.C. Cameron, Professor of Greek:  “the end to which repentance and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ led.”

15. P. Doddridge (Congregationalist):  “in order to be forgiven of their sins.”

16. M.L. D’Ooge (Baptist), Professor of Greek:  “unto, in order to, for.”

17. K. Fullerton (Presbyterian), Professor of Greek and Hebrew:  “into or unto, the aim or end of baptism is remission of sins.”

18. G.S. Sale (Presbyterian), Professor of Greek:  result or purpose of baptism, to obtain remission of sins.”

19. C.F. Sitterly (Methodist), Professor of Greek and English Bible:  “reason or motive that should induce to repentance and baptism.”

20. Joseph Thayer (Congregationalist), Esteemed Professor of N.T. Criticism and Interpretation, translator of Grimm-Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon:  “unto the remission of your sins.”

21. R. Halley (Congregationalist), Classical Tutor at Highbury College and Principal of New College, St John’s Wood, London:  “future and prospective.”

22. A. Harkness (Baptist), Professor of Greek:  “denotes purpose, in order to, for the purpose of receiving.”

23. J.C. Proctor, Professor of Greek:  “denotes object or end in view.”

24. W. S. Tyler, Professor of Greek:  “denotes object and end of the two verbs.”

*To reemphasize, this list was extracted from professional linguists who were not Oneness believers (nor CofC) for the express purpose of ruling out any prejudice.  Of course, this well demonstrates that unbiased scholars understand that the Greek preposition used in Acts 2.38 (eis) looks forward and not backward to something (as in the “because of” dodge proffered by Trinitarians like Dalcour).

*Below is a list of 53 translations—combining hundreds of independent, professional linguists—none of whom have translated Acts 2.38 as “because your sins have already been forgiven” (as endorsed by Dalcour above):

1. American Bible Union Version:  unto the remission of your sins

2. Amplified NT:  for the forgiveness of your sins

3. Anderson:  In order to the remission of your sins

4. Authentic (Schomfield):  for the forgiveness of your sins

5. Authorized Version (KJV):  for the remission of sins

6. Berry’s Interlinear:  for remission of sins

7. Centenary Translation:  for the remission of sins

8. Challomer Rheims:  for the forgiveness of sins

9. Douay:  for the remission of sins

10. Emphasized Version:  into the remission of sins

11. Emphatic Diaglot:  for the remission of sins

12. English Revised:  unto the remission of sins

13. Englishman’s Greek NT:  for the remission of sins

14. Ferrar Fenton:  for the remission of sins

15. First German Bible:  for (in order to, unto) the forgiveness

16. French Translation:  in order to obtain the remission of sins

17. Geneva Bible:  for the remission of sins

18. German Translation (for, unto):  in order to forgiveness of sins

19. Good News for Modern Man:  in order to have your sins forgiven

20. Goodspeed:  in order to have your sins forgiven

21. Hackett (commentary):  in order to the forgiveness of sins

22. Haweis (1795AD):  for the remission of your sins

23. Indian Translation:  in order to the forgiveness of sins

24. Italian Translation:  into the remission of sins

25. Jerusalem Bible:  for the forgiveness of your sins

26. Knox:  to have your sins forgiven

27. Young’s Literal Translation:  to the remission of sins

28.  Living Bible:  for the forgiveness of sins

29. Living Oracles:  in order to the remission of sins

30. Macknights Translation:  in order to the remission of sins

31. Modern English:  for a release of your sins

32. Modern Speech:  with a view to the remission of sins

33. Moffatt:  for the remission of sins

34. H.B. Montgomery (1924):  for the remission of your sins

35. Moulton’s Modern Reader’s:  Unto remission of sins

36: New American Standard:  for the remission of your sins

37. New Catholic Version:  for the forgiveness of sins

38. New English Bible:  for the forgiveness of your sins

39. New International version:  for the forgiveness of your sins

40. New King James Version:  for the remission of sins

41. NT in the Basic English:  for the forgiveness of sins

42. Phillips Modern English:  so that you may have your sins forgiven

43. Revised Standard Version:  for the forgiveness of your sins

44. Rothermham:  unto the remission of your sins

45. Spanish Translation:  for the purpose of remission of your sins

46. Syriac Version:  for the remission of sins

47. Twentieth Century Translation:  for the forgiveness of your sins

48. Verkuyl (Burkeley Version):  for the remission of sins

49. Warrell’s Translation:  unto remission of your sins

50. Wesley’s Translation:  for the remission of sins

51. Weymouth:  for the remission of your sins

52. Williams:  that your sins may be forgiven

53. Wycliffe (1308):  into the remission of youre synnes

*Syntactically, the placement of the prepositional phrase translated “for the forgiveness of sins” appears after repentance and water baptism in Jesus name because the first two elements are the requirements of what man must “do” (v. 27) and the third element (the gift of the Holy Spirit) is a sovereign act of God.  That is, as with all of the covenants of God throughout history—if mankind obeys His commandments then God honors His promises.  This is often seen in “conditional clauses” where there is a protasis (“if” you do this…) and an apodosis (“then” the result will be this…).

*Since “eis” is found ca. 1,750 times in the NT and, as demonstrated above, the standard meaning of “for the purpose of” is well recognized—one must proceed with extreme caution before announcing that he has found an “exception” to the rule (cf., e.g., Granville Sharp’s Rule #6). 

*That is, one must have an overwhelmingly compelling case before thrusting aside literally hundreds of professional Greek linguists that emphatically demand this normative understanding of the prepositional phrase used in Acts 2.38.  After hundreds of years of intense scrutiny by professional Greek scholarsthat has not been accomplished and the clear force of Acts 2.38 stands as a stalwart sentinel safeguarding the biblical new birth so that its adherents can rest securely in eternal salvation. 

*Renowned Greek scholar and text-critic Dr. Daniel Wallace does not personally believe that baptism is required as a condition for the forgiveness of sins.  This is important to keep in mind inasmuch as Dr. Wallace is the author of the highly acclaimed work, Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics (GGBB).  As seen in the following blog post, Dr. Wallace has a discussion of the so-called “causal” force of eis.  He rightly points out that studies have shown that “the linguistic evidence for a causal eis” falls short of proof.  He stingingly calls this misguided twisting of the Greek preposition an “ingenious solution” that “lacks conviction” (GGBB; pp. 370-371).

*In this vein, celebrated Baptist scholar, H.B. Hackett, renders the Greek phrase, eis aphesin hamartion in Acts 2:38, as “in order to (receive) the forgiveness of sins,” referencing Matthew 26.28 and Luke 3.3 as parallel texts (1879, 54).  As Hackett notes, the identical prepositional phrase in Matthew 26.28 is used by Jesus to declare:  “For this is my blood of the covenant which is poured out for (eis) forgiveness of sins” (εἰς ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν).

*Did Jesus pour out His Blood “because of” sins that were already forgiven?  Of course not.  Let us ask, does it matter whether or not we believe that Jesus shed His blood “to obtain” remission of sins, or if He died “because of” forgiveness already attained (i.e., prior to His cross-work)?  Is what one believes regarding the efficacious nature of Christ’s death important?  

*How can anyone possibly hold the viewpoint that parallel prepositional phrase-constructions do not equally communicate the same idea?  Such is a wholly illogical position.  How can any conscientious and sincere person disregard equivalent and inspired grammatical meanings that were designed to clearly explicate eternal salvation?  You would think people would fear God’s judgment bar and tremble at His word! 

*As one scholar suggested, underline the phrase “for the forgiveness of sins” in Acts 2.38 and in your margin make this notation:  See Matthew 26.28 — identical purpose phrase!  Indeed, we would be hard pressed to find a serious Greek scholar who would say otherwise regarding this prepositional phrase.  Why do you think there is not a single translation that renders these verses as “because of?”  They are too intellectually honest to do so—and Dalcour should take up their mantle if he desires biblical salvation!

*Stay tuned for part III of Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38.  Thank you for reading!

Edward Dalcour & Acts 2.38 (I)

*Below is a point-by-point exegetical refutation of the charges of Edward Dalcour against Oneness believers interpretation of Acts 2.38 that can be corroborated HERE.  We have simply copied Mr. Dalcour’s article in *bold black (as here) and offered categorical responses immediately following in *blue (as here).  This expositional series on the specific grammar of Acts 2.38 will be divided into a tetralogy (i.e., IV segments).  Stay tuned for three more posts in this sequence soon to follow.  Enjoy!

(Dalcour):  “Repent, and be baptized every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins. . . .” (KJV).

(Dalcour):  The United Pentecostals Church International (UPCI) uses this passage (among others) to support its view that water baptism MUST be done “in the name of Jesus” only to be valid.  Since the UPCI theology holds to the idea that Jesus IS the “Father,” “Son,” and “Holy Spirit.”

*As we will demonstrate below, the only NT water baptisms recorded were always performed with an oral invocation of the name of Jesus Christ (e.g., Acts 2.38; Acts 8.16; Acts 10.48; Acts 19.5; Acts 22.16; I Corinthians 1.13; I Corinthians 6.11; Romans 6.3; Galatians 3.27; James 2.7)—not once in “the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”

*Hence, in reality, the UPCI simply practices what the scriptures demand relative to the necessity of water baptism in Jesus’s name (Acts 4.12).  That is, Oneness believers do not use this passage to support anything—this passage uses us for biblical salvation!

(Dalcour):  The UPCI’s position is clear: Peter commands new converts to (a) repent be water baptized and (b) be baptized only by way of the exact formula:  “in the name of Jesus.”

*As repeatedly pointed out to Trinitarian apologists, the UPCI’s biblical position regarding baptism in the name of Jesus Christ does not equal some sort of incantation.  It does no good to invoke His name without faith in the same—much like Trinitarians often conclude their prayers by employing the prepositional phrase “in the name of Jesus.”

*Indeed, God healed a lame man through faith in the invoked name of Jesus (Acts 3.6).  And, “Whoever shall call upon the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10.13; BLT).  The Apostle Peter applied this concept to the Day of Pentecost wherein many were both water and Spirit baptized (cf. Acts 2.21).  Why then object to the identical prepositional phrase when baptizing?  Answer:  the creedal doctrine of the Trinity!

(Dalcour):  Therefore, as the UPCI asserts, the remission or forgiveness of sins is accomplished only by water baptism “in the name of Jesus,” and repentance.  However, only by disregarding the historical context and particular grammar, can the UPCI hold to such a heterodox view.

*Greek text of Acts 2.38 (NA28):  Πέτρος δὲ ⸂πρὸς αὐτούς· μετανοήσατε, [φησίν⸃,] καὶ βαπτισθήτω ἕκαστος ὑμῶν ⸀ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ εἰς ἄφεσιν τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ὑμῶν⸅ καὶ λήμψεσθε τὴν δωρεὰν τοῦ ἁγίου πνεύματος.

*In both reality and exegesis, the polar opposite of Dalcour’s typically erroneous accusation(s) above is true!  That is, the context and specific grammar of this text are the very agents that holds Oneness believers hostage to the conviction that water baptism in Jesus name is necessary for biblical salvation.  The “context” was salvation (cf. Acts 2.40)—which included water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ in the clearest way.

*Moreover, who is charging Oneness believers with “heterodox(y)”—agenda-driven Trinitarians like Dalcour?  This would be identical to Mormons labeling other movements as “heretics.”  Simply, such an indictment is useless—especially coming from Trinitarians!

*Further, if Dalcour were to place himself standing in the listening audience on the Day of Pentecost, would he have been part of the three thousand who obeyed Peter’s plain language (cf. Acts 2.41)?  Or, would Mr. Dalcour have tortured Peter’s clear instructions “thus making void the word of God by your tradition” (Mark 7.13)?  That is, if Dalcour would have actually heard the Apostle Peter command water baptism “in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins”—would he have obeyed this clear edict?  It certainly doesn’t look like it!

*In his distinguished work entitled The Book of Acts, celebrated Professor of Biblical Criticism and Exegesis, Dr. F.F. Bruce noted (of 2.38):

The reply was unspeakably reassuring.  Incredible as it must appear, Peter told them that there was hope even now.  Let them repent of their sin and turn to God;  let them submit to baptism in the name of Jesus, confessed as Messiah.  Then not only would they receive forgiveness of sins, but they would receive also the gift of the Holy Spirit—the gift which had been bestowed on the apostles themselves only a few hours before…it might have been expected that, when the disciples experienced the outpouring of the Spirit from the day of Pentecost onward, they would discontinue water baptism as having been superseded by something better.  In fact they did not:  they continued to baptize converts in water “for the forgiveness of sins,” but this baptism was now part of a more comprehensive initiation which took its character especially from the receiving of the Spirit.

The practice of baptism was tolerably familiar to Peter’s hearers, who (like John’s hearers before them) were required to receive baptism in water as the outward and visible sign of their repentance.  But there are now two new features in the rite of water baptism: it is administered “in the name of Jesus Christ” and it is associated with “the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

It (baptism) is administered “in the name of Jesus Christ”—not only by his authority but also, probably, in the sense that his name was invoked or confessed by the person being baptized (cf. 22:16).  In addition, the person who administered the baptism appears to have named the name of Jesus over converts as they were being baptized (cf. 15:17)…It would indeed be a mistake to link the words “for the forgiveness of sins” with the command “be baptized” to the exclusion of the prior command to repent.

In a similar passage in the next chapter (3:19) the blotting out of the people’s sins is a direct consequence of their repenting and turning to God; nothing is said about baptism, although it is no doubt implied (the idea of an unbaptized believer does not seem to be entertained in the New Testament).  So here the reception of the Spirit is conditional not on baptism in itself but on baptism in Jesus’ name as the expression of repentance.  

(Dalcour):  Furthermore, the doctrine of baptismal regeneration controverts the theology of Luke (e.g., Acts 10:43).

*Though Trinitarian apologists have been informed of this ad nauseum, we will once again repeat that Oneness believers do not teach “baptismal regeneration” since genuine biblical salvation is predicated upon much more than water baptism.

(Dalcour):  Even so, UPCI leader David Bernard remarks on the necessity of water baptism, as he understands Acts 2:38:

“We should remember that water baptism is administered because of our past life of sin; it is for the ‘remission of sins’ (Acts 2:38).  Since the name of Jesus is the only saving name (Acts 4:12), it is logical that the name be used in baptism”  (The Oneness of God, 139).

*Bishop Bernard has plainly stated that prayer and water baptism without faith in the name of Jesus Christ is useless:

But the name of Jesus is not a magical formula; prayer is effective only if we have faith in, and truly know, the One whom the name represents (Acts 3:16; 10:43).  Bernard, David K.  In the Name of Jesus (Kindle Locations 333-334).

*Moreover, Elder Bernard has adamantly rejected the inflammatory charge of “baptismal regeneration.”  For example, on page 131 of Dr. Bernard’s work The New Birth he writes:

At this point, we must emphasize that the Bible does not teach “baptismal regeneration,” for the water and the ceremony do not have saving power in themselves.  Water baptism is not a magical act; it without spiritual value unless accompanied by conscious faith and repentance.  Baptism is important only because God has ordained it to be so. God could have chosen to remit sin without baptism, but in the New Testament church He has chosen to do so at the moment of baptism…God alone remits sins based on Christ’s atoning death.  When we submit to water baptism according to God’s plan, God honors our obedient faith and remits our sin.

*Will Dalcour now practice scholastic integrity and retract his false charges against Bro. Bernard?  I certainly won’t hold my breath!  Indeed, I do not know a single Oneness believer who embraces the doctrine of baptismal regeneration.  This is but another of Dalcour’s straw man fabrications—as he typically does with Oneness believers (i.e., charging us with things we do not even believe).  So much for academical honor!

*See more here from Bro. Bernard himself:




(Dalcour):  In proper biblical interpretation:  Context governs word meanings.  This is a vital point in exegesis.

*We completely agree!  Indeed, the various governing contexts are honestly the very basis of our rejection of the Trinity doctrine—as well as our insistence on Jesus name baptism (cf., e.g., Matthew 28.18-20 and Colossians 2.9).

(Dalcour):  In other words, whatever Acts 2:38 is saying, it cannot oppose the NT as a whole in which the constant theme is justification (salvation) is through faith (as the sole instrument), apart from works—any works, such as the work of water baptism (cf. John 5:24; Rom. 4:4-8; 5:1; 1 Cor. 1:17, 30-31; Eph. 2:8-10; 1 John 5:1 et al).

*First, even many Trinitarian exegetes (with far more credentials than Dalcour) reject the Reform mantra of sola fide as underscored in the quotation below regarding James 2:

James 2:24:  You see therefore that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone (ὁρᾶτε ὅτι ἐξ ἔργων δικαιοῦται ἄνθρωπος καὶ οὐκ ἐκ πίστεως μόνον).  James returns to his main point in vv. 14 – 26 for a fourth time (recall vv. 14, 17, and 20).  In this sentence, he wants to ensure that his audience has reached the proper conclusion from the example of Abraham.  The plural “you see” (ὁρᾶτε) shows that he is addressing everyone in his congregations again, not merely the imaginary disputant.  He pulls “by works” (ἐξ ἔργων) to the front of the sentence for emphasis, underscoring his argument.  James again uses the verb for a demonstration of justification, so that his statement connotes that “by works a person is shown to be justified.”  It is by people’s actions that they prove the reality of their professions of faith, both to others and to God.

It is interesting to note that this is the only time in the NT that the three words “by faith alone” (ἐκ πίστεως μόνον) appear without intervening material.  That expression is the best Greek translation of the Reformation rallying call, sola fide, “by faith alone,” but this is exactly the opposite of what James is arguing for!  (James; Zondervan Exegetical Commentary of the NT; Craig L. Blomberg; Mariam J. Kamell).

*In footnote no. 72 Dr. Blomberg notes:  The Reformation slogan came in part from Luther’s German translation of the Bible, which added “alone” (allein) as an interpretive gloss in Ro 3:28.  Martin (James, 96) actually sees James’s use of μόνον as support for Paul’s view of faith, for neither Paul nor James would have supported a faith that did nothing.  Johnson (The Letter of James, 244) draws out the parallel use of μόνον in 1:22, with the contrast there of “hearing only” vs. “doing the word.”

*(James 2.14-24; NET):  What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but does not have works?  Can this kind of faith save him?  If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, keep warm and eat well,” but you do not give them what the body needs, what good is it?  So also faith, if it does not have works, is dead being by itself.  But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.”  Show me your faith without works and I will show you faith by my works.  You believe that God is one (masc. sing. adj. εἷς); well and good.  Even the demons believe that – and tremble with fear.

But would you like evidence, you empty fellow, that faith without works is useless?  Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar?  You see that his faith was working together with his works and his faith was perfected by works.  And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Now Abraham believed God and it was counted to him for righteousness,” and he was called Godʼs friend.  You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.

*Note also that this epistle is written by the hand of an Apostle (James) who was water baptized in Jesus name (Acts 2) and spoke in tongues upon receiving the Holy Spirit (Acts 1.13)—the very experience that Dalcour is attempting to eradicate!  (Note: see also Revelation 14.12 which clearly shows that biblical salvation consists of faith and obedience to God’s commandments.)

*Of course, thousands of erasers from the Reform camp have been worn out over the last 500 years in a desperate attempt to render these clear passages of no affect.  Indeed, Martin Luther questioned the veracity of the book of James calling it a “straw-epistle!”  Simply, these very plain verses directly militate against the false dichotomy put forth by the Reform party of faith vs. works.  James and Paul are not at odds with one another in their soteriological conclusions.  Biblical salvation flows out of invisible faith that manifests itself with visible works.  In sum, no works—no true faith!

*Further, if Dalcour dismisses “any works” (as he does above) relative to salvation—does this include repentance?  Does a person not even have to repent of their sins to be saved now?  The practicing drug addict, liar, thief, adulterer, etc. are now “saved” since many of them openly profess faith in Christ.  In fact, when I was a practicing drug addict I had faith in Christ (and indeed used to lament that I was not in church).  Was I saved at that time?  Of course not!

*Even worse for the Reform camp, the Bible explicitly identifies repentance as “works.”  In Paul’s testimony before Agrippa he affirms that he preached:  to those in Damascus and Jerusalem, and all the region of Judea, and to the Gentiles, I kept declaring to repent and to turn to God, doing works worthy of repentance.  (Acts 26.20; BLT)

*Note the present active “participle of means” translated “doing” (πράσσοντας) [works] demonstrating the means by which these unbelievers were converted, viz., repentance!  (Incidentally, observe also that there is no mention of “faith” in this soteriological passage – nor in Acts 2.38!)  Bear in mind that this is the same Apostle Paul who wrote the oft-appealed-to Romans 4 exposition on works—and yet Paul plainly identified repentance as “works.”  Conversely, the Bible never labels water baptism as a “work!”

*Dr. Craig Keener notes:

By preaching deeds appropriate to repentance (ἄξια τῆς μετανοίας), Paul closely echoes John’s preaching in Luke 3:8 (ἀξίους τῆς μετανοίας), offering continuity between these prophets.  The verb for “practicing” such deeds does not appear in Luke 3:8 but might allow for a contextual contrast with the forensic “practicing deeds deserving death” in Luke 23:15, 41; Acts 25:11, 25; 26:31….Naturally, by the label “repentance,” Paul’s message advocated some specific content (see comment on Acts 2:38), but the summary here is not inaccurate, or unusual for Luke, for whom not only John (Luke 3:3, 8) but Jesus (5:32; 10:13; 11:32; 13:3-5; 15:7, 10) and Peter (Acts 2:38; 3:19; 5:31; 8:22; 11:18) preached repentance.  This was part of the summary of the apostolic commission (Luke 24:47); though Paul sometimes summarizes it as John’s message (Acts 13:24; 19:4), he shares it himself toward both Gentiles and Jews, as here (17:30; 20:21).  (Acts, An Exegetical Commentary, Vol. 1-4; Craig S. Keener; Acts 26.20)

*As referenced above, every scriptural citation in Dalcour’s parenthetical reference overhead was penned by the hands of men who had already been water baptized in Jesus name (with an oral invocation of the name, [cf. Acts 22.16]) and spoke in tongues upon reception of the Holy Spirit—as well as the churches being addressed in these epistles (e.g., Acts 1.13, 8.16, 10.1-48, 19.1-6; I Corinthians 14.18).

*We call this spiritual “invasion of privacy!”  That is, Dalcour here opens letters addressed to born-again believers who has already experienced Christian initiation via John 3.3-5/Acts 2.38—which he wars against in his effort to protect his religious tradition(s).  Thus, Dalcour is opening someone else’s mail and then addressing it to himself—is there a lawyer in the house?!

(Dalcour): Note, that there at least four acceptable interpretations of the passage.  However, of the interpretations offered by competent Christian theologians, none provide for baptismal regeneration.

*As usual, Dalcour classifies only those who agree with his doctrinal posture as “competent Christian theologians.”  Of course, all the while Dalcour constantly appeals to the likes of Drs. Joseph Thayer, Robert Funk, Judaic-Aramaic Targums, etc.  This is vintage Dalcour:  petition anti-Trinitarian resources when attempting to validate his “Trinity” doctrine—yet cry “foul” if Oneness believers marshal a Trinitarian resource!  Dalcour has utilized these unequal scales for over a decade and we do not look for him to change his methodology anytime soon.  Even though this has been pointed out to him ad nauseum Dalcour just stubbornly forges ahead with his fingers stuck in his ears (a natural outgrowth of his “Calvinist” soteriological views)!  

(Dalcour):  Thus, Paul says:  “For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel. . . .” (1 Cor. 1:17).

*Yes, but Paul only said this after he had just affirmed (only four verses earlier) that the entire Corinthian church had already been baptized in Jesus’s name—the very doctrine Dalcour seeks to eradicate!  Hence, if the natural flow of the author is allowed to stand unaided by Trinitarians the original audience had already read:

Is Christ divided?  Was Paul crucified for you?  Or were you baptized in the name of Paul? (I Corinthians 1.13; ESV; Cf. also 6.11)

*Dalcour just never seems to learn (more about this passage above in a separate post)!

(Dalcour):  For example, noted Greek grammarian J. R. Mantey offers one such acceptable interpretation.  He argued that the preposition eis (“for”) could be causal, hence the passage could read:  “And Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and be baptized—each one of you—at the name of Jesus Christ because of/for/unto the forgiveness of your sins.’”

*The supposed “causal” force of the preposition εἰς (“for”) is an age-old dodge by Trinitarian grammarians that has been thoroughly debunked as we demonstrate at length below.

(Dalcour):  In other words, the preposition eis should be translated “because of,” or “in view of” not “in order to” or “for the purpose of” forgiveness of sins.

*As the lengthy treatments below demonstrate—this is patently false.  In fact,  some years ago now a Church of Christ (CofC) minister sent Acts 2.38 to the following noted college professors inquiring if the Greek preposition “eis” (“for”) could mean “because of” in said passage.  Below are their direct replies (note:  he also includes excerpts from some older grammarians in his list below).  We have left the CAPS just as we received them in the following quotations (presumably for emphasis):

 1. Frederick M. Combellack, University of Oregon:

“The Greek proposition ‘eis’ is NOT used to express cause.  One of its common uses is to express purpose.  That is the usage illustrated in the passage you quote from Acts 2:38.  Peter means ‘Let each of you be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ FOR THE PURPOSE of the remission of yours sins’.”

2. J. B. McDiarmid, Executive Officer, University of Washington, Department of Classics, Seattle:

“Thank you for your letter of November 4, I think that ‘eis’ NEVER means ‘because of’ in the sense ‘as the result of.’  It may mean ‘because of’ in the sense of ‘with a view toward,’ as apparently it does in this passage.  That it may express the end either literal or figurative TOWARD which the action tends.  In this passage the remission of sins is the END of the act of baptism.”

3. Robert B. Cross, Department of Greek and Latin, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA:

“As far as I am able to determine ‘eis’ in the New Testament at any rate can ONLY be translated by such a phrase as ‘for the purpose of, in order to accomplish’ and such-like.  It could be translated ‘because of’ in the sense of ‘for the purpose of’ or ‘for the cause of’-which means exactly the same thing.  It could NEVER mean ‘because of’ in the sense of ‘on account of’.”

 4. John L. Heller, Professor of the Classics, University of Illinois:

“I do NOT believe that ‘eis’ ever means ‘because of’ and certainly NOT in the passage you quote:  ‘Peter said unto them, Repent and be baptized, each of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the sake of forgiveness of your sins.’  Here ‘eis’ is certainly NOT causal but final, meaning ‘for the purpose of, in order to receive’.”

 5. John V. A. Fine, Department of Classics, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ:

“To the best of my knowledge ‘eis’ CANNOT mean ‘because of.’  It does not express ‘cause’ but frequently expresses purpose.  Acts 2:38 I shall translate (literally) as follows:  ‘And Peter said unto them Repent and let each of you be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of your sins’.”

6. Warren E. Lake, Professor of Greek Language and Literature, Dept. of Greek, University of Michigan:

“The preposition ‘eis’ can never have the force of ‘because of’ at any period of the language.  Its primary meaning is ALWAYS ‘to’ or ‘into’ in the NT and in Modern Greek ‘in.’  It is used in this passage in the metaphorical sense of ‘limit of motion,’ i.e., ‘be baptized unto or with a view to’ remission of sins.  This is seen fairly frequent in the NT particularly with the articular infinitive.  Cf. Rom. 3:25; Mt. 20:19; Rom. 1:11; 1Cor. 9:28; etc.”

7. E. Bundy, Asst. Prof. of Classics, University of Berkley, Berkley, CA.:

“The preposition denotes ‘purpose,’ ‘for the remittance of your sins,’ or ‘with a view to remit,’ etc. or ‘in order to (gain) remittance,’ or some such expression.  Peter said unto them Repent and be baptized each of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remittance of your sins…”  Eis could ONLY be translated ‘because of, means, (or) purpose’.”

8. Henry B. Dewing, Bowdoin College and President of Athens College, Athens Greece:  

“I should say that ‘eis’ indicates not a result or consequence, but rather END or design.  I should translate, “Let every one of you be baptized (to the attainment of) forgiveness of sins…”  The meaning ‘because of’ is UTTERLY OUT OF THE QUESTION.”

 9. Henry Darling Brackett, Professor of Greek, Clark College:

Eis means ‘In order to,’ but ‘for the purpose of’ is better, because the fundamental universal meaning of ‘eis’ is ‘toward, into, or in the direction of’ and NOT ‘out of,’ ‘arising from’ or ‘because of’.”

10. Frank Hugh Foster, Instructor of New Testament Greek, Oberlin Graduate School of Theology:

“The meaning of ‘eis’ may be either of two things, either to indicate the purpose…or to indicate the result.  In the first place it would be translated ‘in order to gain’ in the second, ‘with the result of’.  It NEVER means ‘because of’.”

11. E. A. Nida, member of Editorial board of “The Bible Translator.”  Vol. 3, no. 3, July 1952:

“‘Repent, and be baptized’ and ‘sins are forgiven.’  Our problem at this point is to determine the relationship of these two expressions as we find it indicated in the Greek preposition ‘eis’ usually translated ‘into,’ but having a variety of meanings including ‘unto,’ ‘for,’ ‘in regard to.’  It is not easy to determine the precise relationships between these processes.  We may regard the Greek ‘eis’ as resultive, i.e. – the ‘baptism of repentance’ results in forgiveness of sins.

“However ‘eis’ could also designate the purpose of the baptism….In English we can use the ambiguous conjunctive phrase ‘so that’ and translate the portion of the verse as ‘repent and be baptized so that their sins may be forgiven.’  The use of ‘so that…may’ still leaves ambiguity, as between purpose and result, but the principle emphasis is upon purpose.”

12. Professor Flagg, Cornell University:

“In respect to your inquiry about the force of the preposition ‘eis’ in the passage of the NT to which you refer (Acts 2:38), I should say that it denoted intent or purpose with a view to, much as if it has been written, ‘so as to obtain the remission of sins’.”

13. J. H. Huddleston, Professor of Greek, University of Maine:

“Peter spoke to them ‘repent and let each one of you be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ to the end (that there may be) delivery from your sins.  ‘EIS’ CANNOT mean ‘because of’ but as often in the NT ‘for the purpose of’.”

14. Edgar J. Goodspeed, Professor of Biblical & Patristic Greek, University of Chicago:  

“Peter said unto them you must repent and every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, in order to have your sins forgiven.  It NEVER means ‘because of’.”

 15. Donald L. Wise, Moody Bible Institute:

“We are inclined to agree with you that the evidence of its usage and interpretation in context indicate that the preposition (Eis in Acts 2:38) is used to indicate purpose.”

16. Clinton W. Keys, Assistant Professor of Greek and Latin, Columbia University, New York City:

“Change your attitudes and let each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the removal of your sins.’  ‘Eis’ takes the accusative ‘aphesin.’  I don’t see that it can mean anything but ‘for,’ or ‘for the purpose of’.”

 17. Canon Emile Chartier, Vuce Rector, Montreal University:

“But there is one meaning it (eis) never bears, and that is the causal (because of) {He paraphrases Acts 2.38 as:} – ‘if you are sorry of your sins and you undergo baptism, your sins will be forgiven’……”

*To be continued in part II soon (above).  Thank you for reading!


Exegetical Surrejoinder πρὸς Edward Dalcour (IV)

*Below we post the fourth and final counter-response in this particular series toward the attacks of Edward Dalcour against Oneness believers.  As before, I have simply pasted Dalcour’s article (found HERE) in *black with my responses immediately following in *blue, as here.  Stay tuned for more information relative to the early church formula of water baptism in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins (e.g., Acts 2.38).  In the meantime we hope the following surrejoinder is edifying to the church.  Enjoy!

(Dalcour):  PLURAL VERB—esmen (“we are”)

(Dalcour):  John 10:30 (as well as the entire chap.) at face value, in the most plainness way, indicates that Jesus is not the Father— egw kai o Pathr eJn esmen (“I and the Father one We Are”).  After one reads John 10, he would never never get the idea that Jesus is the Father;  only if he were superficially “taught” Oneness unitarianism would he come up with that.

*But, as pointed out above doesn’t Dalcour inform us in the preface to his book that:  I find that Christians who have not been adequately taught about the Trinity make the same ‘error’.  Thus, unstudied Christians too often unknowingly affirm Oneness theology in their efforts to explain how Jesus is God.  

*According to Dalcour’s own quote here if these people are not “taught about the Trinity” they “often” arrive at the Oneness conclusion.  Of course they do Mr. Dalcour—that’s the natural conclusion of the Scriptures themselves!  And, since Dalcour is so fond of appealing to translation-consistency (rightfully so), perhaps he can point us to the consensus of Greek linguists who have adopted his esoteric “plain” translation of John 10.30 above:_________?  Hear that music playing in the background Mr. Dalcour?  

(Dalcour):  To say again, no one in church history (viz. Christian fathers, ecumenical councils, or resulting creeds) or present-day recognized scholarship embraced Oneness doctrine—they have always rejected it as non-Christian, a departure from the Christ of biblical revelation.      

*Once again, Dalcour juxtaposes extra-biblical resources alongside Scripture for his supposed “orthodoxy” (a buzz term for his beloved “creeds” and “councils” of men).  Further, this assumes that Trinitarians constitute the biblical “church”—which, of course, the Scriptures themselves forcibly reject.  Apparently Dalcour does not consider the book of Acts to include “church history” wherein converts are baptized in Jesus’ Name and spoke in other tongues upon receipt of the Holy Spirit (which, of course, Dalcour has not received).  Not surprisingly, in his denial of the biblical testimony, Dalcour tries his hardest to explain all of these God-breathed passages away in an effort to protect his religious traditions.   

(Dalcour):  When ones reads plainly the entire content set forth in the literature of John, he sees clearly that Jesus and the Father were distinct not the same person.  This is seen esp. in places such as John 10:15-18, where Jesus had clearly differentiated Himself from the Father.  As well as the passages leading up to v. 30.

*As pointed out above, Dalcour attempts to erase the force of Jesus’s words in John 10.30 by donning his trifocals in the passages “leading up to v. 30,” yet completely disregards how the original hearers understood Christ’s affirmation of identity as the one “God” (cf., v. 33).  And, specifically where can we read so “plainly and clearly” of “distinct persons” in any biblical corpus:________?  Surely Dalcour will have no problem directing us to such obvious passages (?)!

*In his effort to evade the silver bullet of Tritheism Dalcour here slips in the modification of “distinct persons” in exchange for “separate beings.”  However, as pointed out to Trinitarians ad nauseum there is absolutely no difference between “distinct” and/or “separate,” nor “persons” and “beings.”  Since Dalcour most often appeals to human beings as the reflection of his Trinity doctrine – every human “person” I have ever met is equally a human “being!”  As Dalcour’s very own resource overhead demonstrates (i.e., Robertson’s quote), many Trinitarian exegetes employ the term “separate” when attempting to explain their Triune divinity notions (cf., e.g., my debate with James White).  This is nothing more than usual Trinitarian theology pawned off as supposed “exegesis.”

(Dalcour):  The same Father of whom Jesus says, “For this Father loves Me” and in v. 18, Jesus says that He lays down His life ap’ emautou, “from Myself, My own [not ‘our’] initiative.”  Jesus tells His readers as in John 6:38, before the incarnation He makes and possesses His Own determination/will (note the reflexive emautou) “of, from My own [not, “our own”], thus, distinct from the Father (cf. John 6:38).

*Before addressing Dalcour’s primary blunders overhead I want to point out his theological insertion above of the word “distinct” in his last clause.  Here Dalcour slips in his Trinitarian-creedal commitments with the term “distinct” since absolutely nothing in the actual grammar of Dalcour’s supposed proof-texts would prohibit him from employing the descriptor “separate”…other than his Trinitarian theology.  Every time Trinitarian apologists fabricate the term “distinct (divine persons)” biblical Christians/Monotheists should recognize this ploy and hold their feet fast to the biblical text itself!   

*Dalcour once again offers partial quotations of biblical verses above.  Here’s the final clause of John 10.18 that Dalcour omitted:  “This commandment I received from My Father.”  I ask honest readers if such language utilized by Christ as “commandment” naturally communicate “co-equal, co-eternal divine persons?”  Can one ontologically co-equal, co-eternal divine person literally “command” another co-equal, co-eternal divine person?  Why doesn’t the Holy Spirit ever “command” the Son of God?  Or, why doesn’t the Son of God ever “command” the Father?  Would Dalcour have us believe that only his supposed first divine person issues commands to the second divine person while the second divine person orders the third divine person?  To borrow from Dalcour’s own playbook, such Trinitarian theology is “an utterly convoluted doctrine!”

*Note also Dalcour’s [bracketed] assertion above of “not our” when referencing John 10.18.  I wonder if Dalcour will accept this identical hermeneutical methodology in the approximately 50 biblical passages that describe one divine person as the sole Creator?  For example, though Dalcour does his best to erase this verse (and there are many more) using his own criterion above – perhaps he can point us to “our” or “we” in this verse:

(Isaiah 44.24; NASB):  Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, and the one who formed you from the womb, “I, the LORD, am the maker of all things, Stretching out the heavens by Myself And spreading out the earth all alone,”

(BHS):  כֹּֽה־אָמַ֤ר יְהוָה֙ גֹּאֲלֶ֔ךָ וְיֹצֶרְךָ֖ מִבָּ֑טֶן אָנֹכִ֤י יְהוָה֙ עֹ֣שֶׂה כֹּ֔ל נֹטֶ֤ה שָׁמַ֨יִם֙ לְבַדִּ֔י רֹקַ֥ע הָאָ֖רֶץ מֵי אִתִּֽי׃

(LXX):  Οὕτως λέγει κύριος ὁ λυτρούμενός σε καὶ ὁ πλάσσων σε ἐκ κοιλίας Ἐγὼ κύριος ὁ συντελῶν πάντα ἐξέτεινα τὸν οὐρανὸν μόνος καὶ ἐστερέωσα τὴν γῆν. τίς ἕτερος

*Note the single person (independent) pronouns, masculine singular verbs, singular participial verbs and single nouns above in Yahveh’s declaration of His sole-creatorship (again, deserving of an entirely separate article!).  Is Yahveh telling us the truth in this verse or should we accept Trinitarian explanations over 2,000 years ex post facto?  A Trinitarian view is soundly annihilated and rejected at this point and cannot stand exegetically.  

*To suggest that Isaiah 44.24 really explicates a “Trinity of divine persons” who “co-equally” created supplants the most natural reading for a painfully tortured and abnormal interpretation.  Perhaps Dalcour should go inform his same Judaic resources (e.g., the Targums) that this verse really describes his Triune divinity opposite what Yahveh Himself affirms.  Simply, Trinitarian conjecture stubbornly disallows Yahveh to identify Himself.

*Above, in his misunderstanding of the passage Dalcour again unwittingly argues for individual wills and minds within God by asserting that the supposed preexistent Son of God possessed “His own (independent) will” prior to the Incarnation.  As repeatedly pointed out to Trinitarians, this is Tritheism defined—despite how many times they pay mere lip service to “Monotheism.”       

(Dalcour):  Perkins is simply in error.  Yes, essential Unity, not identification—coupled with the plural verb esmen- not eimi, (“am”) or estin (“is”).

*The polar opposite is true inasmuch as the original audience understood Christ’s clear assertion as a statement of “identification” (v. 33).  You know Mr. Dalcour—“context!”  Dalcour would pompously have us accept his personal theology that directly militates against the actual text itself.  Sorry Mr. Dalcour, eternity is not worth it – think we will stick with God’s Word and leave you to your “creeds” and “councils.”

(Dalcour):  In point of fact, the Apostle John envisages the Son as the monogenhV qeoV (“unique God,” John 1:18), who was WITH the Father as a distinct person before time (cf. John 1:1, 18, 6:38; 8:58; 17:5; Rev. 5:13).  Further, John sees the Son as God as the eternal God deserving of religious worship (cf. John 5:23; 9:38; Rev. 5:13-14).  John sees the liar as any denying this Son of divine revelation (cf. 1 John 2:22-23).

*First, though he seeks to dodge it in his book, Dalcour understands that there is a meaningful and viable textual variant in John 1.18.  Second, it never ceases to amaze me how Dalcour repeatedly identifies as “fact” what is completely non-existent.  Absolutely nowhere does the Apostle John affirm that the Son of God coexisted with God “as a distinct person before time” as Dalcour “factually” asserts above.  Again, Dalcour merely invents his own Bible and then arrogantly demands that this is “fact” to be accepted by biblical Christians and Monotheists.

*Not surprisingly, Dalcour’s cross-references that appear (parenthetically) above actually stand opposite his Trinity doctrine (cf. John 1:1, 18, 6:38; 8:58; 17:5; Rev. 5:13).  At this point, I will simply let our audience read these verses for themselves to see if these passages naturally lead one to the Triune divinity conclusion.

*Moreover, the Apostle John was a preacher who water baptized in Jesus’s Name (cf. Acts 8.16), spoke in other tongues upon reception of the Holy Spirit (cf. Acts 2.1-4) and taught that Jesus Christ was the one-sole “true God” in this same epistle (cf. I John 5.20).  And Dalcour is seriously charging Oneness believers with supposed “source abuse” above?  Far from explicating Dalcour’s fabricated “co-eternal, co-equal, God the Son” – or, as Paul would say, “another Jesus” (2 Corinthians 11.4) – John viewed Jesus as the one OT Yahveh enfleshed for the sins of the “whole world” (cf. John 1.1-14, 8.58, 14.8-10; I John 2.2).

(Dalcour):  REVELATION 21:22:  “I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.”  (NASB) 

(Dalcour): Perkins states that,

The Greek verb translated ‘are’ (ἐστιν) in this text is the ‘singular verb estin’ that Dalcour requests above explicating both God and His Son.  If a plural verb describing the Father and the Son quantifies as two divine persons—why does not a singular verb modifying the same subject equal a single divine person (esp. when this passage contextually describes the singular ‘temple’ of Heaven)?”

(Dalcour):  Then Perkins provides a lengthy explanation, which only proves my point:  Perkins is not a fan of context.  Perkins simply attempts to isolate this passage from John’s own theology in both Revelation and in John’s entire literature.  Simply, Perkins makes two slippery mistakes (perhaps hoping no one will fact check).

*Yes, I was just hoping, praying and sweating it out that no one would take the time to fact check my gleeful “mistakes”—and that is why I have submitted my textual refutations to Dalcour publicly!  This is merely Dalcour’s typical smear campaign and diversionary tactic.  The facts are that Dalcour is the one who repeatedly botches his assertions (or “mistakes”) with the Greek text as shown over and over above.

*Dalcour appeals to supposed “context” in an effort to spin away from another of his exegetical blunders.  Yet, he aborts the natural authorial flow in his mishandling(s) of John 1.1-18, John 17, Hebrews 1.1-10, Philippians 2.5-8ff, Colossians 1.15-18, 2 Corinthians 13.14-17, etc.  Worse, the context of this passage does absolutely nothing to negate the grammatical fact that a single verb is employed by John to describe both God and His Son (which I carefully explained in my original piece).  This is nothing more than Dalcour’s usual smoke in a mirror.      

(Dalcour):  1) John has already differentiated Jesus from the Father throughout the book.

*Actually, John opens both his entire gospel account and apocalypse by openly and specifically identifying Jesus as the sole Almighty God and writes from this splendid launching pad (cf. Revelation 1.8, 3.21, 4.2).  Further, though Trinitarians have been told this until we could pass out, Oneness believers openly acknowledge a distinction between God and His Son.  But this distinction is biblically demonstrated as ontological and not merely “functional” as Trinitarians claim.  One wonders at this point if we’re even reading the same biblical data?

(Dalcour):  For example, Revelation 3:21 presents the “Son” as sitting on His own throne (distinct from the Father’s throne).

*This is a mind-boggling assertion—even for Dalcour!  Let’s take a look at what this passage actually says shall we?  Remember, Dalcour is fond of stating that the book of Daniel teaches that there are multiple “thrones” for his alleged divine persons of the Trinity in Heaven (as per his misunderstanding of Daniel 7.9):

(Revelation 3.21; KJV):  To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

*Here the KJV has a good rendering of the dative masculine singular prepositional phrase ἐν τῷ θρόνῳ, lit., “in the throne.”  Note this text specifically states that Christ is seated on the throne of Heaven with His Father—and John saw one sitting on this same throne (cf. Chp. 4)!  We are honestly dumbfounded at how Dalcour can make the assertion that the Son of God is “sitting on His own throne distinct from the Father’s throne” in this (or any other) passage.  If “two co-eternal divine persons” are in view here, apparently Dalcour thinks the Son of God is sitting in His Father’s lap (since he consistently argues for bodily separation within the Godhead)!

*In point of fact, this verse states the polar opposite of Dalcour’s assertion above and serves as further validation that Jesus is the sole God of Heaven – as well as again puts Dalcour’s shoddy scholarship on full display.      

(Dalcour):  And Revelation 5:13-14 presents two distinct divine objects of religious worship:  “To Him [the Father] who sits on the throne and to the Lamb [the Son]:  be praise, honor, glory and dominion forever and ever!”

*Specifically where in these verses are “distinct divine objects” of religious worship?  Again, Dalcour slips in his theology in a biblical text that never states nor teaches the same.  In fact, if used to teach multiple divine persons in Heaven this text would serve as another example of Dalcour’s radical (bodily) separation within the Godhead, contra Colossians 2.8-10; Revelation 22.3-4, etc.   

*And, hasn’t Dalcour just informed us that the Lamb has “His own throne” in Heaven apart from God?  By pointedly using the masculine singular article and masculine singular participial verb construct (τῷ καθημένῳ) this verse directly refutes Dalcour’s notion of multiple “thrones” in Heaven in the clearest way (again, not to mention how such a construct would demand bodily separation within the Godhead).  John has already stated that there was one sitting on the throne (Revelation 3.21-4.4) whom, in closing his apocalypse, he identifies as Jesus Christ (Revelation 22.3-4).

(Dalcour):  Passages such as Matthew 28:19; 2 Corinthians 13:14; 1 John 1:3; 2:22; and here Revelation 5:13 confirm a grammatical differentiation between two or all three persons of the Trinity.

*Once again Dalcour engages in his classic circular argumentation by assuming his conclusion at the starting point (i.e., that there is a “Trinity” contained in the biblical data).  As shown above this is actually “grammatically” and exegetically false—and is the very basis of our rejection of Dalcour’s Trinity intrusion and imposition upon the biblical data.  Simply quoting passages that speak of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit does not vindicate three co-equal, co-eternal, divine persons within the Godhead.  Mere assertion never serves as solid biblical evidence—and never will.  Dalcour assumes that mere distinction automatically translates into multiple divine persons – when the overarching biblical theme is that the one-sole person of God of the OT became flesh for the redemption of a lost and sin-stricken humanity.  This is the biblical presentation and identification of Jesus Christ (cf. Matthew 1.23; Colossians 2.8-10; I John 5.20).

(Dalcour):  Grammatically, along with Matthew 28:19, note 2 Cor. 13:14 and 1 John 1:3:    

(Dalcour): 2 Corinthians 13:14: “The grace of the [tou] Lord Jesus Christ and [kai] the love of the [tou] God and [kai] the fellowship of the [tou] Holy Spirit with all of you.”

*Note again the usual Pauline usage of the noun “Christ” (Χριστοῦ) in this verse which, as noted above, is lexically defined as “one who has been anointed” (so NET tn).  Since Dalcour is arguing that this passage “grammatically” explicates his ontological Trinity doctrine we would be quite intrigued to know which ontologically co-equal divine person “anointed” Jesus as God Almighty (Revelation 1.8)?

*Further, the Greek noun translated “Father” (πατρὸς) appears nowhere in this text.  If Dalcour is defining the Greek noun rendered “God” (θεοῦ) as a “Trinity” he has just unwittingly placed both Christ and the Holy Spirit outside of the same – since these terms appear “grammatically differentiated” from the noun rendered “God!”  If father Dalcour keeps multiplying his divinities like this he might as well turn his collar around backwards and join his Roman Catholic brethren for Mass this Sunday!      

(Dalcour):  1 John 1:3:  “Indeed our fellowship is with the [tou] Father and [kai] with the [tou] Son of Him Jesus Christ.”

*No fellowship with the Holy Spirit in this verse Mr. Dalcour?  It will not do for Dalcour to protest that this is an “argument from silence” (as he does HERE) since he repeatedly (and fallaciously) claims that no biblical verse defines God as one person (contra the 9,000 single-person-pronouns) and that Jesus is supposedly never identified as the Father (against John 14.8-10; Isaiah 9.6; etc.).

*Of course Jesus is the Son of God.  However, He is equally presented and identified as the one “true God and eternal life” in this same epistle.

(I John 5.20; NET):  And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us insight to know him who is true, and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ.  This one is (singular indicative verb ἐστιν) the (nominative masculine singular ὁ) true God and eternal life.

*We are aware of the debate surrounding these last two clauses and the demonstrative pronoun οὗτός translated “this one” above (cf. NET tn) and would argue for the rendering above (contra JW’s and Christadelphians).  But, we really do not know what Dalcour assumes this proves for his Trinity hypothesis (?).

(Dalcour):  And Revelation 5:13:  “The [tw] One sitting upon the throne and [kai] to the [tw] Lamb, the blessing and the honor and the glory and the dominion into the ages of the ages.”

*We have already demonstrated how this verse actually works against Dalcour’s eisegesis above if the inspired text is allowed to stand on its own merit.  John clearly identifies “one sitting upon the throne” and he had just presented the Lamb as coming out of “the middle (μέσῳ) of the throne” (5.6)—a perfect illustration of the Incarnation (and precisely the Oneness message).  The same one on the throne is the same one who comes as the Lamb to save mankind, yet the throne is not emptied inasmuch as God-proper is an omnipresent Spirit.  In sum, far from advocating a Trinity of divine persons Revelation 5 reveals that the one God of Heaven became our Sacrifice—despite how hard Dalcour stomps his foot in protest of the biblical testimony.  

(Dalcour): According to the “normal” rules of Greek grammar (cf. Granville, Reymond, Beisner, Wallace, Greenly), Jesus (the Lamb) is distinct in person from the Father throughout Scripture.  To make Rev. 21:22 militate against John’s own words in other places is blatant eisegesis—viz. again, a painful and flawed hermeneutic.  But again, Perkins enjoys using and abusing naked words in spite of context to arrive at unorthodox interpretations.

*First, as repeatedly demonstrated above it is Dalcour who apparently enjoys misquoting, misidentifying and outright flubbing the Greek text.  We can certainly sympathize with periodically missed citations, but Dalcour does this in virtually every one of his presentations.  As stated above, I honestly feel sorry for his unsuspecting students and pray that the biblical Christ saves both them and Mr. Dalcour.

*Second, as shown overhead absolutely nothing in the Greek grammar normally points to Dalcour’s “distinct” persons.  In fact, not one thing in Dalcour’s supposed proof texts would prohibit separate divine beings other than his cherished and venerated “councils” and “creeds” that he constantly juxtaposes right alongside Scripture (seize on his usage of the phrase “unorthodox interpretations” above).

*Third, again, I repeatedly appealed to context in my biblical refutation of Dalcour as the original article below plainly demonstrates.  Indeed, biblical context is the very source of our rejection of Dalcour’s blatant Tritheism (masquerading as “Monotheism” of course)!  Apparently Dalcour would have me adorn biblical words with his councils and creeds as he does opposite allowing the “naked words” (whatever on earth that means?) of the Bible to stand-alone.  No thank you, we’ll leave that to agenda-driven Trinitarians like himself!      

(Dalcour):  2)  Since the Greek is clear, Perkins either has no concern about reading the text carefully in its original significance (Greek) whereby Perkins merely assumes all Oneness believers will blindly accept his assertions here or he just cannot read Greek.  Simply, as Perkins knows it (it was brought to his attention over and over), Rev. 21:22 has NO syntactical parallel to John 10:30.

*Here Dalcour assumes that a syntactical parallel is demanded to have a single verb apply to both God and His Son (as is clearly the case with this text).  Further, in reality, it is careful analysis of the Greek text that holds us hostage to deny Dalcour’s Trinity impositions in these passages.  Once again, Dalcour engages in his classic Ad Hominem attacks by charging that I was hoping that biblical Christians would simply “blindly accept” my direct quotes from the original languages.  Of course, this is an obvious attack on my personal character all the while Dalcour continuously fumbles with both the Hebrew and Greek texts.

*In point of fact (contra a mere case of one-upmanship), Dalcour has just explained himself perfectly as repeatedly demonstrated overhead.  This tendency always astounds me about the nature of deception.  Again, I have many more of Dalcour’s botches and gross misinformation recorded.

*Moreover, in my original piece below I specifically addressed this usual Trinitarian dodge of the single verb used in Revelation 21.22 that modifies both God and His Son.  Once again, here’s my specific comment that, not surprisingly, Dalcour entirely omits from the consideration of his reading audience:

Trinitarians typically attempt to dodge this dilemma by stating that Revelation 21.22 is not syntactically parallel to John 10.30 and hence does not apply to the debate (as Dalcour does below).  However, this is a subtle shift in argumentation to evade their obvious inconsistency since no appeal to syntax was marshaled from the Trinitarian camp in the original assertion.  This is nothing more than the usual effort by Trinitarians to spin away from their discordant appeals.  The exegetical fact remains that a singular verb modifies both the Father and the Son of God in Revelation 21.22 as the vast majority of reputable translations clearly affirm (e.g., ESV, NASB, BSB, NKJV).  Why the double standard from Trinitarians?  Inquiring minds want to know!

(Dalcour):  John 10:30 reads:  egw kai oJ Pathr eJn esmen (lit., “I and the Father one we are”).

*Greek has an entirely different plural pronoun translated “we” (ἡμῶν) that does not appear in John 10.30.  Further, absolutely no reputable translation adopts Dalcour’s agenda-driven, personal esoteric rendering.  I suppose Dalcour would have us believe that he sees something in this passage that all of these linguists have overlooked HERE?  No thank you Mr. Dalcour – eternity is too serious to accept your words in opposition to the statements of Christ:

(Berean Literal Bible; John 12.48):  The one rejecting Me and not receiving My words has one judging him:  The word which I spoke, that will judge him in the last day.  

(Dalcour):  Rev. 21:22 reads: Kai naon ouk eidon en auth oJ gar kurioV oJ qeoV oJ pantokratwr naoV authV estin, kai to arnion (lit., “And temple not I saw in it, indeed [the] Lord the God almighty, temple of it is, and the Lamb”).        

*Again, Dalcour militates against the majority of linguists and translators HERE.  

*As demonstrated below in such excellent translations as the ESV and NASB, what Dalcour misses is that the goal of a translator is to supply the equivalent of the sender language into the receptor language.  Apparently Dalcour thinks that these outstanding translation committees should have surely consulted with him before offering the following renderings!

(ESV):  And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb.

(NASB):  I saw no temple in it, for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb are its temple.

(Dalcour):  Note that first in John 10:30, the verb (esmen, “are”) appears at the end of the sentence, after the phrase, “I and the Father,” thus, Jesus and the Father—“we are” one, not “we “is” (estin) or “am” one.  Whereas in Rev. 21:22, the verb (estin, “is”) is before the phrase, “and the Lamb.”  Thus, kai to arnion (“and the Lamb”) is an additional clause.  No connection whatsoever—and Perkins knows this.

*Once again Dalcour shape-shifts and modifies his original argumentation to syntax from exegesis (which we readily oblige below).  The grammatical fact remains that the plural vs. single verb that Dalcour is always complaining about relative to John 10.30 is provided at Revelation 21.22—despite how hard Dalcour attempts to spin out of his exegetical conundrums.

*But, since he apparently missed the following references in my original article—and since he is heading to the Judgment seat of God one day—here they are again (copied from my article below):

“Just for good measure, a couple of additional passages where singular verbs simultaneously modify both the Father and the Son of God as the same subject:

“Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus, direct our way to you.  (I Thessalonians 3.11; Berean Literal Bible)

“Αὐτὸς δὲ ὁ θεὸς καὶ πατὴρ ἡμῶν καὶ ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦς κατευθύναι τὴν ὁδὸν ἡμῶν πρὸς ὑμᾶς·  (NA28)

“The Greek verb rendered ‘direct’ (κατευθύναι) above appears in the aorist, active, optative, 3rd person, singular form describing the activity of the Father and Jesus.  Will Trinitarians be consistent in their verbal appeals at this point?  Or, will they now offer the usual spin-away-from-it tact?  I prophesy the latter (and was indeed proven to be correct above)!  

“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word.  (2 Thessalonians 2.16-17; NASB)

“Αὐτὸς δὲ ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦς Χριστὸς καὶ [ὁ] θεὸς ὁ πατὴρ ἡμῶν ὁ ἀγαπήσας ἡμᾶς καὶ δοὺς παράκλησιν αἰωνίαν καὶ ἐλπίδα ἀγαθὴν ἐν χάριτι, παρακαλέσαι ὑμῶν τὰς καρδίας καὶ στηρίξαι ἐν παντὶ ἔργῳ καὶ λόγῳ ἀγαθῷ.  (NA28)

“You guessed it!  The four verbs (two in participial form) above used to explicate the action of the same subject – God the Father and Christ – are all singular, not plural.  Where are all the blog posts and lectures from Trinitarians concerning these singular verbs that modify both God and His Son?  Why the deafening silence?  Not to worry, we will shout it from the proverbial mountaintops for them!”  

(Dalcour):  Perkins lack of awareness in Greek (or purposeful fraudulence) causes him to assume that that lone context-less singular verbs constitute doctrine.  However, the entire context and syntax must be considered—something Perkins does not do, as seen.

*Dalcour once again attacks my personal character.  I could just as easily charge him with the same in his innumerable blunders and outright misinformation.  However, I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt that he is simply a poor-sloppy student of the Bible (as noted both above and below) opposed to charging him with “purposeful fraudulence.”

*Further, of course “the entire context,” syntax, and exegesis should be considered.  These are the very agents and sources of our denial of his multiple-divine-persons intrusion into the biblical data!  As anyone can see both above and below on this blog I highly emphasize biblical context and grammar—something Dalcour opposes all the while providing lip service to the same!  Mind-boggling. 

(Dalcour):  In the end, the only ones who will accept the assertions of Roger Perkins in his article are uncritical and disinserted Oneness believers.

*You can cool down your panic-mode rhetoric Mr. Dalcour.  You have no one other than yourself to blame.  And, we’re not quite sure what a “disinserted” Oneness believer is (?).  Again, as noted by Oneness academics, Dalcour’s poor writing style makes it rather difficult at times to understand his assertions – or to take him seriously.

*More importantly, numerous ex-Trinitarians and current Oneness believers have contacted me personally and thanked me for helping them understand the biblical identity of God as well as the gross errors of the Trinity doctrine (this was esp. true after the White debate).  In reality, it was critical-analytical examination that led them into a Scriptural view of Christ.  To Jesus Christ belongs all the praise, honor and glory!

(Dalcour):  Again, biblical scholarship is on the Trinitarian side, and thus in John 10:30—Jesus and the Father are distinct persons who are one in unity an essence. Oneness advocates like Perkins stand alone, for obvious reasons.  Note the some robust (a few of countless) scholarly opinions regarding John 10:30 militating again the Oneness position:

*Once again we will point out to Dalcour that Dr. Thayer was openly and decidedly against the Trinity doctrine.  Noted grammarian Adam Clark rightly rejected the anti-biblical notion of “co-eternal Sonship” (so Dr. Walter Martin).  Dr. Daniel Wallace stated in the link provided earlier that the Trinity doctrine came after the writings of the Apostle Paul.  James White stated that God exists as “three divine individuals, each with separate centers of consciousness apart from the other two divine individuals” (cf. White-Perkins debate).  Dr. A.T. Robertson argued for “separate” divine persons—a term Mr. Dalcour denies…and on and on we could go.  Not to mention how Dalcour once again commits the Argumentum Ad Populum fallacy above.

*Let’s see if Dalcour will accept these same “robust scholarly opinions” regarding the usage of εἷς at Galatians 3.28 (?).  Or, we wonder if Dalcour will apply what these “same robust scholars” affirm about the force of the masculine singular εἷς had it appeared in John 10.30 toward Mark 12.29; Galatians 3.20; James 2.19; etc.?  For some reason we’re thinking Dalcour will start his fancy footwork again at this point!

(Dalcour): New Testament scholar Murray Harris:  “This dual conception of ‘distinction of person-community of essence’ also comes to expression in John 10:30, egw kai oJ pathr eJn esmen, which refers to neither personal identity (which would require eJiV esmen) nor simply to agreement of will and purpose (since John 10:28b, 29b implies at least an equality of power).” (Harris, Jesus as God, 285, n. 38).

*Dr. Harris serves as yet another testimony to the natural force of the masculine singular adjective εἷς as sole “personal identity.”  We honestly do not understand why Dalcour cannot comprehend this—when he is posting the very resources that affirm our contention with this particular form of the adjective rendered “one” at Mark 12.29!?

*And, will Mr. Dalcour equally accept Dr. Harris in his exegesis of Colossians 1.15 (?) (Exegetical Guide to the Greek New Testament; Colossians and Philemon; p. 39):

Εἰκὼν (-όνος, ἡ, image) is nom. after the vb. εἰμί, and is anar. because a pred. noun after εἰμί sometimes lacks the article (cf. 2 Cor. 4:4).  It is definite (“the image,” “the visible image [NLT], “the visible representation” [Cassirer]) although anar.  An εἰκὼν is a “likeness” or a “visible expression.”  The degree of resemblance between the archetype and the copy must be determined by the word’s context but could range from a partial or superficial resemblance to a complete or essential likeness.  Given 1:9 and 2:9, εἰκὼν here signifies that Jesus is an exact, as well as a visible, representation of God…The invisible God, who dwells in unapproachable light (I Tim. 6:16), is visibly expressed in his Son (cf. John 1:18; 12:45; 14:9).

*While we readily acknowledge Dr. Harris as Trinitarian in his theological commitments, he is what is often referred to as an “honest Trinitarian” (I have read much of his work).  I ask the honest reader, does careful language such as “visible expression,” “representation,” and “copy” naturally communicate the eternal-heavenly realm—or is such grammar innately descriptive of the Incarnation?  I will simply allow the integrity of your conscience be the guide!   

(Dalcour):  Marvin Vincent:  “The neuter, not the masculine εἶς, one person.  It implies unity of essence, not merely of will or of power.”  (Vincent, Word Studies in the NT, vol. 2)

*Precisely our point at Mark 12.29, Galatians 3.20, James 2.19, etc. ad nauseum.  Jesus did not employ the neuter singular adjective ἕν in explicating the “most important commandment,” but rather the masculine singular adjective εἷς—which Vincent informs us here would mean “one person.”  How many times do we have to repeat this for Dalcour?  

(Dalcour):  Robertson (as cited):  “By the plural sumus [“are”] (separate persons) Sabellius [Oneness] is refuted, by unum [‘one in essence’] Arius” (Word Pictures, 5:186).

*But Dalcour denies “separate” divine persons in the Godhead.  Wasn’t he just accusing me of alleged “source abuse” above (although the boomerang effect of Dalcour’s charge is painful to watch!)?

(Dalcour):  Jamieson-Fausset-Brown:  “‘Are’ is in the masculine gender—‘we (two persons) are’; while ‘one’ is neuter—‘one thing.’  Perhaps ‘one interest’ expresses, as nearly as may be, the purport of the saying. . . . Thus it will be seen, that, though oneness of essence is not the precise thing here affirmed, that truth is the basis of what is affirmed, without which it would not be true.  And Augustine was right in saying the ‘We are’ condemns the Sabellians (who denied the distinction of Persons in the Godhead), while the ‘one’ (as explained) condemns the Arians (who denied the unity of their essence)’”  (JFB, Commentary, Volume 3: Matthew to Ephesians).

*God is not a “thing.”  He is a personal-invisible Spirit that became a visible Man to save “whosoever will.”  Moreover, note above that JFB claims that the verb translated “are” appears in “the masculine gender” – which is absolutely false!  This Greek word (ἐσμεν) is a present tense, active voice, indicative mood, 1st person plural verb – that does not even have gender!  Again, if Dalcour were a more careful student of God’s Word he would have caught yet another blunder in his selected resources.   

*However, here is Dalcour’s same “robust” resource at Galatians 3.28:

One—Greek, “one man”; masculine, not neuter, namely “one new man” in Christ (Eph. 2:15).

*As noted, Dalcour treats his resources like a NYC cab ride—hop in where you want, but hop out when you don’t like where it takes you!  

(Dalcour):  David J. Ellis:  “The neuter gender rules out any thought of meaning one Person.’  This is not a comment on the nature of the Godhead.  Rather, having spoken of the sheep’s security in both Himself and the Father, Jesus underlines what He has said by indicating that in action the Father and He can be regarded as a single entity, because their wills are one” (Ellis, “John,” in The International Bible Commentary, with the New International Version, ed. F. F. Bruce, 1249).

*At this point we are beating a dead horse, but, just for grins and giggles we will point out yet another of Dalcour’s resources openly affirming that when the masculine singular is used to explicate God “one person” is in view.  I think it is well justified at this point to state that Dalcour’s arguments have succinctly backfired on him—all the while he has provided the ammunition for those he deems as the enemy (i.e., biblical Christians-Monotheists)!  With this type of assistance from Dalcour we don’t even have to use our own ammo.!   

(Dalcour):  It is not surprising that Oneness-unitarians like Roger Perkins who after reading the plainness of so many biblical texts and examining scholarly and lexical sources makes so many errors in hermeneutics (as shown above and shown in debate) and his misuse of scholarly sources esp. lexical abuse.

*While I am not interested in engaging in a game of sophomoric one-upmanship we have both repeatedly and honestly demonstrated these exact words concerning Dalcour.  Sincerely, I wouldn’t change a word of Dalcour’s fallacious charge above regarding himself.

*Further, the fact that there are no “plain biblical texts” affirming the doctrine of the Trinity—yet many to the contrary—is the very thing that forced me to walk away from Trinitarian churches.  I simply take eternity very seriously and have to be completely honest with the “plain biblical texts” that clearly militate against Dalcour’s Triune divinity (e.g., Deuteronomy 6.4-8; Isaiah Chpp. 42-44; Mark 12.28-29; John 1.1-18, John 14.8-18; Colossians 2.8-10; etc. ad nausuem).    

(Dalcour):  So, what we have here is yet another Oneness advocate who is so controlled by unitarianism that he will sacrifice simply and verifiable truth for the sake of his tradition.  Yes, it is a spiritual issue; Christians must keep praying that God will deliver Oneness Pentecostals from the bondage of the Oneness theology, which denies both the Father and the Son.

*Actually, what we have here is someone controlled by the biblical data itself in exchange for Dalcour’s unbiblical religious tradition(s) and factually-demonstrably erroneous “truth” claims.  And, biblical Christians are indeed praying for the deliverance of Trinitarians like Dalcour in his obstinate and willful blindness.

*We have finally concluded an agreement point:  This is indeed a both spiritual and eternal issue, which is precisely the reason we will continue to reach for the Trinitarian community toward biblical salvation and monotheism.  Indeed, great revival is happening in many countries among Trinitarian pastors who are rightfully aborting their man-made creeds and traditions for biblical salvation and monotheism.  To Christ be all the glory!

(Dalcour):  I seriously hope that Oneness believers reading this will visit our website (www.christiandefense.org) or email me personally (edward@christiandefense.org) regarding questions, concerns, or prayer.

*This is nothing more than Dalcour’s usual lip service.  His typically pompous attitude and demeanor (a natural outflow of his “Calvinism”) betrays the polar opposite.  We truly pray for Trinitarians whose hearts are not governed by the councils and religious traditions of men.  Indeed, we have wept many heartfelt tears in private for Trinitarians—and will reach for them with a burdened heart for as long as God decrees our existence on His earth.  Please feel free to contact me personally via the “comments” section of this blog.  God bless and thank you for reading!

*Pastor Roger Perkins

Exegetical Surrejoinder πρὸς Edward Dalcour (III)

*Below we continue with our categorical rebuttals to the charges of Edward Dalcour (HERE) against Oneness believers.  I have copied Dalcour’s assertions in *bold black underneath with my immediate responses in *blue as here.  Enjoy! 

(Dalcour):  eJiV  (“one”):  Now onto Perkins attempt to go against all mainline scholarship regarding the neuter adjective eJiV (“one”):

(Dalcour quoting my original rejoinder [cf. below]):  Though this has been pointed out to Trinitarians ad nauseum, the masculine singular (3-3) adjective heis, translated “one” (εἷς), is indeed applied to God from the very lips of Jesus in Mark 12.29 as “the most important commandment.”  If, as Dalcour asserts here, the masculine singular heis demands a single person (and it certainly does) the entire Trinitarian position is collapsed according to Christ Himself!  That is, Jesus’ view of the Godhead was most definitely not that of a “Triune divinity”—and His view of both God and Scripture should equally be our view.

(Dalcour):  First, he again, as with all unitarians, assumes unitarianism into Mark 12:29 (one God = one person).  As much as Oneness advocates would like this point to be true, nowhere does Scripture indicate one God = one person.  A redundant vibrato of citing passages that indicate “one God” is meaningless when “one” is left undefined as Perkins does—he merely assumes “one” means one numerically and one in solitary.

*Unbeknownst to Dalcour, in his last sentence above he openly suggests that he does not worship one God in the “numerical” or “solitary” sense (which, of course, we already knew).  Further, we should expect Dalcour to provide the same and biblically define or identify the adjective translated “one” in John 10.30!  Yet, to be expected, he does not—and cannot—do so.

*Moreover, we have, in the clearest way possible, pointed out to Dalcour that God’s usage of single-person-pronouns (ca. 9,000 of them) to identify Himself is not an “assumption” if the natural rules of grammar are to be left intact.  It never ceases to amaze me how Trinitarians can attempt to force-feed “three co-eternal, co-equal, divine persons—each with their own independent mind(s)” into a single-person-pronoun – then charge someone else with supposed “assumption?”  This is akin to Hillary Clinton disparagingly labeling someone else a “liberal!”

*As it relates to Mark 12.28-29 let’s take a closer look at the surrounding “context” that Dalcour complains about (and misapplies) in John 10 – even though he rejects the original audience’s understanding who actually-initially heard these words:

28  And one of the scribes having come up, having heard them reasoning together, having seen that He answered them well, questioned Him, “Which commandment is the first of all?”

29  Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘Hear this O Israel: The Lord our God is One Lord,  30 and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength  31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’  There is not another commandment greater than these.”

32  And the scribe said to Him, “Right, Teacher.  You have spoken according to truth that He is One, and there is not another besides Him,  33 and to love Him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love the neighbor as oneself is more important than all the burnt offerings and sacrifices.”  (Berean Literal Bible; Mark 12.28-33).

*Note above the consistent usage of the single-person-pronoun in this dialogue—clearly demanding one-single-person.  In the conversation recorded above Dalcour would have us believe that the single-person-pronouns employed denote one person when describing Christ and the scribe.  Yet when the same single-person-pronoun is applied toward God, the meaning subtly shifts to “three divine persons”—and the reader is expected to understand this faint pronoun amendment in midstream to maintain supposed “orthodoxy.”  Pardon my frankness here, but this is just patently absurd.

*Worse, once again the original hearer understood Jesus’ assertion to demand one person as evidenced in his response:

“Right, Teacher.  You have spoken according to truth that He is One, and there is not another besides Him, and to love Him with all the heart and with all the understanding and with all the strength, and to love the neighbor as oneself is more important than all the burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

*Being a typical Trinitarian, Dalcour offers radically different conclusions some 2,000 years later than the original audience did—just as he does at John 10.30-33.  But, anything to protect those infallible “orthodox” councils of men under the guise of sola and tota-scriptura!  Incidentally, we should note how Dalcour repeatedly juxtaposes the terms “historical” and (supposedly) “biblical” in his effort to defend the indefensible Trinity doctrine.  Of course, this once again exposes his propensity toward supplemental-foreign intrusions into the scriptural data itself (so all non-Christian groups).           

(Dalcour):  Although in both the OT and NT “one” can mean composite/compound unity, one group, people, one union between husband and wife, one section or many, etc.  Further, at least nine words in Hebrew can mean “one” (Morey)—and Perkins knows this.  An undefined “one” rather proves the Trinitarian positon, since the foundation of the Trinity is monotheism (one God), and the foundation of Oneness is one person.  So in spite of Perkins’ overly complaining, Mark 12:29 does not show what Perkins wants it to show—Jesus was not a unitarian.  

 *We would love to know how on earth an “undefined one proves the Trinitarian position?”  Dalcour is drunk on his Trinitarian froth and delusion at this point and just makes things up as he goes along (so John Calvin, Joseph Smith, Charles Russell, etc.).  An “undefined one” will never “prove Trinitarianism” despite how hard Dalcour attempts to injure the scriptural data with his religious traditions in his rejection of biblical Monotheism.  (Note:  To imply, as Dalcour does above, that Christ was a supposed “Trinitarian” has the same merit as the existence of the planet Kolob!  Such an assertion is simply laughable.)  

(Dalcour):  Second, Perkins goes on to say,  

“Although lexical quotes abound to this end, ironically, Dalcour’s quotation from Robertson above is one of the most conclusive citations from Greek linguists (cf. Zodhiates, Vincent, Thayer, BDAG, Wuest, et al.).”

(Dalcour):  Please note:  Not ONE of these sources applies a unipersonal (viz. that God is one person) meaning to eiJV at Mark. 12:29 (Deut. 6:4, LXX), not one.  Hence, Perkins references (“Zodhiates, Vincent, Thayer, BDAG, Wuest, et al.”) is his rickety attempt to sustain a unipersonal meaning of eiJV at Mark 12:29—but again, scholarship (esp. the ones he references) is decidedly against a unipersonal meaning of Mark 12:29 (or any other passage).

*First, as has been pointed out to Dalcour ad nauseum, Dr. Thayer was not “decidedly against” the biblical proclamation that God exists as one person—he was decidedly in favor of it!  Here Dalcour lives up to his usual slapstick “scholastics” in yet another erroneous claim and misassertion.

*Second, Dalcour repeatedly appeals to the Jewish Targums in his desperation to locate the Son of God in the OT—yet we would love for Dalcour to demonstrate where this same Jewish resource arrived at his Triune divinity doctrine:___________?  Or, where even “one” of Dalcour’s oft-quoted Jewish sources arrived at his three-personed-deity interpolation (?).  “Source abuse” indeed!

*Incidentally, regarding Dalcour’s repeated usage of the Targums, as Dr. Bruce Metzger once observed:  All translations of the Bible are necessarily interpretive to some extent, but the Targums differ in that they are interpretive as a matter of policy, and often to an extent that far exceeds the bounds of translation or even paraphrase (Cf. Bruce M. Metzger’s article, “Important Early Translations of the Bible,” Bibliotheca Sacra 150 [Jan 93], pp. 35ff).

*Further, Dalcour is fond of appealing to the NT epistles addressed to churches that had been water/Spirit baptized in Jesus’ name and spoke in tongues (e.g., Ephesians, Romans)—all of which Dalcour rejects!  That is, the NT letters to the churches were specifically directed toward born-again believers via John 3.3-8/Acts 2.37-38 salvation.  Thus Dalcour is guilty of spiritual invasion of privacy since he is opening letters addressed to someone who had already enjoyed the very salvific experience that he wars against!  Ironically, Dalcour attempts to chide Oneness believers for their supposed poor resources—and yet he doesn’t even blush!?  Like Haman, Dalcour once again hangs himself with his own fabricated rope.       

(Dalocur):  Perkins says,when heis is used “one person” is in view . . . lexical quotes abound to this end.”  (Dalcour):  And then Perkins tell us:Indeed, heis is used c. 100x in the NT alone and in no instance does it denote more than one-single-person. . . . the masculine singular heis demands one-single-person.”  

(Dalcour):  This assertion again reveals the stock of knowledge Perkins has in Greek.  Although he has been consistently refuted on this point, Perkins still presses it.  One wonders if he does this purposefully hoping no one will verify this.

*Yet below Dalcour informs us that this specific form of the adjective used by Christ does indeed “most of the time” mean “one person” (although he goes on to deny this force when applied to God [a farcical claim]).  For someone who consistently bumbles in the Greek text Dalcour needs to sweep around his own porch before (mistakenly) dusting off his broom to tend to mine.  Perkins presses this grammatical point because it rightfully repudiates Dalcour’s false doctrine(s).  Further, we would like to see even one “refutation” of the biblical force of this masculine singular adjective translated “one” in Mark 12.29 (what Dalcour erroneously and consistently identifies as a “pronoun” above):________?

*In point of fact, contra his claim above, not a single meaningful refutation has been offered from Trinitarians concerning the force of the masculine singular adjective εἷς.  As we shall soon see, Dalcour’s wobbly attempts to negate the “most” natural reading of the adjective below fails exegetically as well.  We will continue to await Dalcour’s evidence of these “consistent refutations.”  To borrow from his own (usual) ad-hominem attack above, perhaps Dalcour “does this purposefully hoping no one will verify this!”  Simply put – take your own medicine Mr. Dalcour!

(Dalcour):  The masculine eiJV is similar to the English “one.”  Here we have again, Perkins assume unitarianism into the term.  “One” what?  Yes, most of the time, “one person,”—when man is in view.  However, not “every time” as Perkins would like it to mean.  The fact is, if there is even one place where eiJV is used to signify more than one person, Perkins entire premise implodes.  This is true with the multitude of plural verbs, nouns, adjectives, and prepositions applied to the “one” God, which is a thorn in the flesh to Oneness advocates—showing again that Oneness unitarianism is not consistent with biblical view of God.  For example, note Gal. 3:28:

*Here Dalcour’s feet dangle at the bottom of his own noose.  He openly concedes above that the “most” normal usage of the 3-3 masculine singular adjective demands “one person.”  However, he then desperately flails to wiggle out of it by shifting the natural usage of this adjective when it’s applied to God.  Of course, he offers absolutely no textual support for this claim—but we will be sure to check 3 Timothy for Dalcour’s textual evidence!

*We are curious why Dalcour has no problem borrowing from what he thinks is the most normative application of prepositional constructs – “when man is in view” – for pros + accusative case (e.g., John 1.1) and para + dative case (e.g., John 17.5) toward God?  Dalcour then concedes that when applied to human beings this adjective does indeed mean “one person,” yet rejects the “most” natural force of this particular adjective when applied to God!  Why doesn’t he apply the same methodology to the prepositional law(s) at John 1.1, 17.5?  Why the subtle shift in grammatical praxis?  Simple – theological prejudice under the banner of “exegesis” to the untrained and unsuspecting eye.  This adjective places Dalcour’s Triune divinity canard in its coffin where it belongs and he simply cannot have that!

*Moreover, Dalcour’s shoddy hermeneutics is once again placed on open display in his assertion that if “even one place” carries a different meaning of the adjective translated “one” (εἷς) at Mark 12.29 this then blankets an “entire premise.”  Does this self-fabricated technique equally apply to the sole witness of Matthew 28.19, the 9,000 single-person-pronouns applied to Yahveh, the prepositional constructs referenced above, etc.?  That is, if “even one place” in the biblical data negates Dalcour’s understanding of these texts will he now walk away from his “entire premise” according to his methodology above?  For some reason we are thinking not!

*I could just as easily claim that if there is “even one place” where εἷς means “one person” then Dalcour’s entire premise at Galatians 3.28 implodes.  Though this has been pointed out to Dalcour before, in Romans 12.5 Paul switches from the neuter singular ἓν when addressing “many” to the masculine singular εἷς when addressing “individuals” (HERE).  Paul does the same thing at Galatians 3.20, et al.  It’s no use for Dalcour to complain, “But this makes the point about the neuter singular ἓν!” – since he has already informed us that we cannot apply normal grammatical rules for men to God (well, until he comes to prepositions and prepositional phrases)!  Keep in mind that this is the same Paul who was careful to employ this same masculine singular adjective to identify God’s numerical existence (e.g., Galatians 3.20; I Timothy 2.5).

*Opposite Dalcour, clearly Paul understood the grammatical distinction between the neuter singular ἕν and the masculine singular εἷς—as demonstrated by his switch in Romans 12.5, Galatians 3.20, I Corinthians 14.27d, etc.  Moreover, God Himself applies the masculine singular εἷς to His numerical identity and orders that this be the “most important commandment.”  Down goes Dalcour’s co-eternal, co-equal, Triune divinity!    

(Dalcour):  “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female;  for you are all one [eiJV] in Christ Jesus.”

*Yet I thought Dalcour just objected to applying the most natural grammatical rules for human beings toward God?  Why does he now (mis)apply this method at Galatians 3.28 – but then abort his criteria with this same adjective at Mark 12.29?  That is, Dalcour applies this adjective to God as used for separate human beings in Galatians 3.28 in his effort to erase the same adjectives meaning as applied to God in Mark 12.29, Galatians 3.20, James 2.19, etc. ad nauseum.  Quite revealing!

*Further, if Dalcour would do his homework he would recognize that some MSS actually read the neuter singular ἕν—not εἷς:

(A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament; 2nd ed., Bruce Metzger):  A number of other readings arose through the inadvertence of scribes.  Instead of εἷς, several witnesses read the neuter ἕν, perhaps with some allusion to ἕν σῶμα in 1 Cor 12:12.  Two manuscripts read ἔστε Χριστοῦ Ἰησοῦ (P; compare), “you belong to Christ Jesus,” which may be an assimilation to 3:29.

*The critical apparatus to NA28 lists this adjectival phrase as: ⸂ἕν εστε εν Χριστω⸃ F G 33.  Hence, this slight—yet noteworthy—variant is lost on Dalcour due to his sloppy scholarship.  The New International Greek Testament observes:

Although Paul does not use “body” language in Galatians, his present statement is practically equivalent to ἓν σῶμά ἐσμεν ἐν Χριστῷ (Rom. 12:5), ἓν σῶμα οἱ πολλοί ἐσμεν (1 Cor. 10:17).  Here, however, there is special emphasis on Jews and Gentiles (not to speak of free persons and slaves, males and females) being one in Christ (cf. 1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 2:15).

(Zondervan’s Exegetical Commentary; Galatians 3.28 translation footnote; Drs. Thomas Schreiner and Clinton Arnold):  Some texts read “one” (ἕν) “perhaps with some allusion” to 1 Cor 12:12 (Metzger, Textual Commentary, 526).

(UBS Handbooks for New Testament [for translators]; Galatians 3.28):  you are all just like one person in being joined closely to Christ Jesus, ” or “…you are all the same in being closely tied to Christ Jesus.”

*Similarly, in his effort to reject the name of Jesus Christ in the water baptismal formula as demonstrated in Acts (e.g., 2.38, 8.16, 10.48, 19.5, 22.16), Dalcour plays theological leap frog by jumping back to David’s assertion to Goliath that he came “in the name of the LORD” (I Samuel 17.45).  In his on-line presentations Dalcour derides the most natural reading(s) of the Acts baptismal accounts by claiming that since David used this prepositional phrase (“in the name of”) to Goliath—and David’s name was not Yahveh—this somehow enables him to spin away from the plain biblical texts in Acts (?).  Of course, such an abnormal interpretive approach demonstrates how far Dalcour is willing to torture the plain biblical data to maintain his far-fetched and unusual explanations of the clear baptismal accounts in Acts.

*As we have come to expect from Dalcour, he is quite selective in what he utilizes for humans and what he disallows in his grammatical applications to God—just so long as his unbiblical Trinity is protected!  This again betrays Dalcour’s theological agenda under the guise of “exegesis,” and he does this on virtually every page of his book.  Since Dalcour is constantly requesting the conclusion of “even one” grammarian regarding biblical passages, perhaps he will now accept Dr. Thayer’s exegesis at Galatians 3.28 (?):

and where it takes the place of a predicate, Galatians 3:20 (cf. Winer’s Grammar, 593 (551)), Galatians 3:28 (ye that adhere to Christ make one person, just as the Lord himself).  

*Or, how about Meyer’s Commentary:

Proof from the relation cancelling these distinctions, which is now constituted: For ye all are one, ye form a single moral person.

*Still not enough?  How about Elliccot’s Commentary for English Readers in this verse:

One.—The word “one” is masculine—“one man,” “a single person”—as explained in the paraphrase above.

*Need yet another Greek expositor Mr. Dalcour?  Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges:

[ye are all one] ‘ye’ is emphatic, pointing to those who are ‘sons of God,’ Galatians 3:26.  ‘One person,’ or ‘one man’.

*Wait, don’t hang up Mr. Dalcour – here is yet another one!  Vincent’s Word Studies:

Ye are all one:  One moral personality.  The individual differences are merged in the higher unity into which all are raised by their common life in Christ.  This is the one new man, Ephesians 2:15.

*And they just keep coming!  Wayne Walden HERE:

Another gender observation in our verse is that the “one” is masculine, that is, “one person(NEB, REB, Cassirer, New World).  Taking the words contextually, again, instead of literally, individuals in the list have all done the same thing, and God views the matter as though it is the same person, without additional prerequisites, who has come into Christ and is clothed with Christ (v. 27) and who, consequently, belongs to Christ, is Abraham’s progeny, and therefore an heir to the promise to Abraham (v. 29).

*Based on the contextual emphasis inherent in the verb ἔνι and the gender of the adjectives in the verse, Walden proposes the translation:  Whether one is Jew or Greek is irrelevant to the matter.  Whether one is servant or free is irrelevant to the matter.  The subject of “maleness and femaleness” is irrelevant to the matter because, with Christ Jesus, all of you are one and the same person.

*Again, I’m thinking Dalcour will deny the “scholarship” that he repeatedly calls for from these grammarians above.  However, since his eternal soul is at stake – let me try another resource with this verse that Dalcour himself employs below:

One—Greek, “one man;” masculine, not neuter, namely “one new man” in Christ (Eph 2:15)—Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary.

(Dalcour):  Of course, Christians naturally and rightfully cite this passage to show the unity of believers in Christ—because it plainly states this, as with biblical scholarship.  The fact is, Perkins will put a doctrinal spin on any verse if it disagrees with what he believes.

*Trinitarians might cite Galatians 3.28 to dodge the “most” (Dalcour’s own term) natural reading and meaning of the adjective translated “one” in Mark 12.29—but biblical Christians allow the inspired grammar to stand on its own force.  And, in all sincerity I could not word it any better than he has done immediately above to describe Dalcour’s “hermeneutical” methodology!  I would just advise him to once again take his own medicine!

(Dalcour):  Note Perkins comments:    Galatians 3.28 will not do at this point (as Trinitarians typically use to evade the force of heis) since the entire point of Paul’s discourse in these texts is that biblical Christians are ‘one person in Christ Jesus’ (cf. NEB, ASV, ERV).”  

(Dalcour):  “The force of heis”?  What does that mean?

*While I’m not surprised that Dalcour does not follow common exegetical lingo, I’m not sure how else to explain such uncomplicated jargon (as a simple on-line search will quickly reveal).  This is standard and ordinary usage in grammatical-exegetical papers.

(Dalcour):  First, Perkins misleads he readers here.  For both the ASV (“for ye all are one man in Christ Jesus”) and the ERV (“You are all the same in Christ Jesus”), none say “one person.”  As said, Perkins has a reputation for misquoting and botching sources.  He selects translations that he can put a spin on, as he did with the older ed. of the AMP of Gal. 3:20.  The fact is, the translators of the ASV (note, Philip Schaff had chosen the scholars for the project) and the ERV (produced by the WBTC), NEB, and the AMP were translated by Trinitarian scholars, who naturally saw the Oneness view as a perversion of Scripture.    

*Here Dalcour again exposes his theological bias contrary to his repeated claims of supposed “grammar” and “exegesis.”  Sorry Mr. Dalcour, we were under the impression that theology was not to interfere with direct translation!  In fact, the Greek professors I’ve taken classes from rarely even mention theology, but rather focus on the actual inspired grammar itself.  And, not to beat a dead horse at this point, but as we have demonstrated above it is Dalcour who is often all-thumbs with his resources—and I have many more of his bungled quotes!

*Regarding the older publication of The Amplified Bible (we note the theological alterations made to the newer ed.) at Galatians 3.20, no “spin” is necessary since the text plainly speaks for itself:

20 Now a go-between (intermediary) has to do with and implies more than one party [there can be no mediator with just one person].  Yet God is [only] one Person [and He was the sole party in giving that promise to Abraham.  But the Law was a contract between two, God and Israel; its validity was dependent on both].

*If Dalcour had a single translation, quote, Bible verse, fragment or sliver that stated that “God is three persons” he would be grinning like a toothless possum and parading it all over the web.  It wouldn’t matter if it were found inside a Bigfoot mask—Dalcour would be frothing at the mouth over such a quote!  Not to worry though, such a Bible quote simply does not exist to Dalcour’s aggravation.

*Apparently Dalcour should revisit his monstrosity of a “campus” at Columbia Evangelical Seminary to learn what an antithesis is in connection with Galatians 3.20.  Paul is stating in the clearest way that although a mediator demands more than one person (literally, “not of one”), but (δὲ), literally, “the God is” the inverse of the role of a mediator—viz., one person (HERE).  Hence, Paul’s original audience would have already read v. 20 prior to reading v. 28—which, again, emphatically declares that God is “one person” much to Dalcour’s embarrassment.  

*Further, Dalcour once again bumbles his own resource above.  Just as I stated in my original refutation to his eisegesis of John 10.30, the ASV affirms that Galatians 3.28 teaches that believers are a sole person as located “in Christ” (ἐν [+ dat.] Χριστῷ).  Indeed, this is the very emphasis Paul is making by using the masculine singular contra the neuter—and only furthers our point:  for ye all are one man in Christ Jesus.”  How many “persons” does Dalcour suppose language such as “one man” naturally communicates?  Three, or one?  And Dalcour is charging me with placing a “spin” on resources (shall we discuss how Dalcour attempts to weave three-divine-persons into passages such as Isaiah 44.24, etc. ad nauseum?)?

*Moreover, just for kicks, let’s take a look at more of Dalcour’s clumsiness with the Greek text shall we?  In the link immediately below at the 3:45 minute mark while discussing the supposed syntax of John 6.38 Dalcour claims that an aorist tense verb precedes a perfect tense verb—which is patently false!  In point of fact, the polar opposite is true – the perfect tense verb καταβέβηκα (“I have come down”) appears anterior to the aorist tense πέμψαντός (“having sent”).

*Next, Dalcour erroneously claims that the Greek prepositional phrase παρὰ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ appears in John 6.38 at the 4:10 minute mark.  Problem is, no such prepositional phrase appears in this verse at all!  The prepositional phrase actually employed by Christ in this verse is ἀπὸ τοῦ οὐρανοῦ.  Dalcour then mistranslates the singular noun for “heaven” as the plural “heavens” – which, again, does not appear in this verse.

*At the 4:48 minute mark Dalcour claims, “Jesus said my will is distinct from the Father.”  Of course, Jesus never “said” any such thing.  Apparently Dalcour thinks he can just make up his own Bible (see HERE for all of these recent flubbed assertions from Dalcour regarding John 6.38)!

(Dalcour):  That Perkins will rest his interpretation of Gal. 3:28 on a few obscure translations in the face of virtually every other biblical translation is a flimsy argument esp. in the context of Christians being “one in unity” in Cristw.  Again, the translators to which Perkins appeals were Trinitarian.  Also, contrasting the masculine eiJV and the neuter eJn in John 10:30, noted Greek grammarian A. T. Robertson points out:  “Not one person (cf. ei in Galatians 3:28), but one essence or nature” (Word Pictures).

*First, note that Robertson translated εἷς in Galatians 3.28 as “one person.”  How this is lost on Dalcour is mind-boggling since he argues opposite overhead.  Second, I think we have provided far more than a “few obscure translations” above—esp. since Dalcour repeatedly appeals to these same grammarians!  And, again, theology has no place in the actual translation of manuscripts (as Dalcour continuously infers) and this only reveals his typical scholastic hypocrisy.  Moreover, we have repeatedly demonstrated above how Dalcour’s quote from Robertson backfires on him at Galatians 3.20, James 2.19, Mark 12.29, etc.  

(Dalcour):  Perkins’ strange interpretation that “biblical Christians are one person” is, of course, restless eisegesis.  Perkins main howlers here is that critical biblical exegesis is NOT derived from looking at translations trying to find which one matches a view, but rather proper exegesis.  

*First, Dalcour constantly employs the very same grammatical resources I have appealed to above – all of whom state that Galatians 3.28 denotes “one person in Christ.”  In fact, assuming that the masculine singular εἷς is original (cf. the slight variant cited above), as exegetes overhead point out, this is the very basis for their rendering “one man/person.”  Dalcour simply has his trifocals on at this point and actually rejects what he above labels as “proper exegesis.”

*Further, “proper exegesis” does not (i) repeatedly misidentify Greek adjectives as “pronouns,” (ii) misquote Christ’s usage of the preposition εἰς at Matthew 28.19 (claiming an entirely diff. prepositional usage than what was used), (iii) misunderstand lexical quotes (cf. Dalcour’s charges regarding Thayer above), (iv) omit the semantic range of Greek prepositions from his audience’s consideration, (v) fail to consult the “critical” apparatus in Greek texts (e.g., NA28; UBS-5), (vi) repeatedly flub the syntax of Greek clauses as seen above, etc. ad nauseum.  Simply, Dalcour is certainly in no position to be correcting others regarding “proper exegesis” (more aptly dubbed “exit-Jesus” as it relates to Dalcour’s mishandling of the text!).

*Finally, we are not quite sure what a “main howler” is as Dalcour charges above, but perhaps if Dalcour would clear the red from his eyes and slow down he might make more sense…all the while charging Oneness believers with sloppy scholarship (?)!  Typical Dalcour.

(Dalcour):  The Greek phrase, panteV gar uJmeiV eiJV este en Cristw Ihsou, literally, “All indeed you one are in Christ Jesus.”  The Greek completely erases Perkins odd interpretation and affirms clearly, “one in unity,” not in one man.  As mention, this one passage, which denotes a clear one in unity meaning, turns Perkins eiJV view upside down.        

*Coming from someone who constantly fumbles the ball with the Greek text—and who militates against a myriad of grammarians above—I think we’ll play it safe and reject Dalcour’s agenda-driven theology here also!  The grammatical-contextual facts are that Dalcour is flat wrong in his assertion here as established overhead.  In fact, the very reason Paul used the masculine singular (3-3) adjective in this text was to negate Dalcour’s separation eisegesis (as noted by Greek scholars above).  Simply, grammarians say the polar opposite of Dalcour concerning the (variant) tag of the adjective used in this text.  This is nothing more than Dalcour’s typical evasion tactics in the name of supposed exegesis.  

(Dalcour):  Note that Paul’s salutations grammatically denote two distinct persons (cf. Sharp Rule 5).  Grammatically (as circumstantiated by grammarians [Sharp, Greenly, Wallace et al] when there are multiple personal nouns in a clause that are connected by kai and the first noun lacks the article, each noun must denote a distinct person, as shown in all of the Pauline salutations:  cariV uJmin kai eirhnh apo qeou patroV hJmwn kai kuriou Ihsou Cristou, literally, “Grace to you and peace from God Father of us and Lord Jesus Christ” – no articles preceding both personal nouns (patroV and Cristou)—thus, this indicates distinct persons.

*But I thought Dalcour sought to defend his Triune divinity hypothesis here—why no mention of the Holy Spirit in these Pauline salutations?  Dalcour need not complain about “arguing from silence” since he practices this methodological hermeneutic quite frequently (as seen below).  And, problematic for Dalcour, these verses do not say God the Father and “God the Son” as he repeatedly parrots.  

*Most significantly, note Paul’s specific usage of the noun translated Christ (Χριστοῦ) in these salutations—a functional term contra an ontological expression as Dalcour erroneously claims.  As certified above, this noun (Χριστοῦ) defines as “one who has been anointed” (cf. NET TN).  Would Dalcour pray tell us how one supposed ontologically co-equal divine person could “anoint” another ontologically co-equal divine person in eternity past?  Frankly, such a construct is utterly convoluted and completely foreign to the biblical data.

*In summary, Dalcour’s earth-shattering Pauline salutations prove nothing more than the duality of God both within and without the Incarnation.  Simply, the one God of the biblical data simultaneously existent (i) transcendent (God-Father) and (ii) descendant as a genuine man for the redemption of mankind (Lord-Christ).  This is precisely the biblical-Oneness message relative to God’s identity and is our very point.

*Concerning Dalcour’s reference above to Granville Sharp’s (GS) Rule V, here is the actual rule itself:

And as also when there is no article before the first noun, the insertion of the copulative kai before the next noun, or name, of the same case, denotes a different person or thing from the first.

*Note above that GS Rule V does not employ Dalcour’s subtle entry of “distinct”—but rather “different.”  There is a vast disparity between something that is designated as “different” (so Sharp) and what is identified as “distinct” (so Dalcour’s intrusion into the rule).  Distinct explicates what shares common-recognizable qualities, while “different” – as Sharp used – describes something unlike or vastly otherness.  Hence, Dalcour need not appeal to Sharp’s Rule above since it actually opposes his Trinity dogma in its wording!  However, using Dalcour’s hermeneutical standard above, viz., if “in even one place” this rule is invalidated his “entire premise” then implodes, let’s test this “rule” below shall we?

Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.  (Acts 2.36; ESV)

*In the Greek phrase translated “both Lord and Christ” above (καὶ κύριον αὐτὸν καὶ χριστὸν), both personal nouns (Lord and Christ) lack the article, are connected by καὶ, and are of the same case—which Dalcour informs us “must denote a distinct person.”  Thus since he appeals to GS V above, Dalcour has just made “different persons” within Jesus since the rule itself says absolutely nothing about “distinct” persons (note:  there are many other places in the Greek NT demonstrating that this rule is quite suspect and an ex post facto invention, but this one suffices for now).  If he keeps multiplying his divinities like this we can expect to see “Elder Dalcour” at the LDS general conference with his Mormon brethren in Salt Lake next year!

*Note also that Peter, at the inaugural date of the church, declares that the titles Lord and Christ refer to the one who was “crucified” and was “made” (aorist tense ἐποίησεν) both Lord and Christ.  If these nouns “must denote” distinct divine persons as Dalcour asserts above, we would be quite interested to know how divinity can be “made” Lord in eternity past by another divinity?  Wouldn’t this being already be “Lord” from eternity according to Deuteronomy 6.4?  Clearly such plain-inspired language stands in opposition to the fanciful notion of a Triune divinity.

*Significantly, this reveals both the paradigm and template of subsequent NT writers when they utilize the same Greek nouns.  Or, would Dalcour have us believe that Peter introduced one denotation of these titles and later NT writers offered a radically different understanding than originally designated and presented at Pentecost?  That is, did Peter introduce and identify these titles with the Crucifixion – then following NT writers make a U-turn with these same terms back into the eternal “preexistent” domain?  Sorry Mr. Dalcour—we aren’t looking for a theological traffic ticket for illegitimate U-turns.  We cannot afford to pay the eternal price!

(Dalcour):  Along with Gal. 3:28, Perkins Oneness unitarian view of eiJV is esp. refuted by 1 Cor. 8:6:

*Actually, as exegetically demonstrated above, Galatians 3.28 “refutes” nothing – other than Dalcour’s theological dodge-ball tactics.

(Dalcour):  “yet for us there is but one [eiJV] God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one [eiJV] Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.”

(Dalcour):  Remember, Perkins argument is “when heis is used “one person” is in view.”  But wait. Perkins trips here (as with Gal. 3:28) on his own so-called linguistic rule.  If eiJV means, in every case, one sole person, as Perkins asserts, it would follow then that the Father is one sole person and the Lord is one (another) sole person since the double usage of eiJV precedes both nouns, that is, both sole persons, which is consistent with Trinitarianism, not Oneness.

*But wait, Dalcour trips here on his own dodge above!  If the masculine singular adjective translated “one” does not demand one person—then why is Dalcour using it at I Corinthians 8.6?  He has just (mis)informed us that the adjective does not necessitate a sole person, hence, we could just as easily reject the same in his earth-shattering verse here.  But since we seek to practice balanced scales in all things exegetical – opposite merely a negative argumentation – let’s analyze this verse more closely.

*Note that Paul cites the Father as “God” and then specifies the “Christ,” which, again, defines as “one who has been anointed” (cf. NET TN)—which Dalcour informs us is explicating the pre-existent-eternal age.  As pointed out above, we would be quite intrigued to know how one co-equal God-person could “anoint” another ontologically co-equal God-person?  Wouldn’t He already be inherently “anointed” as God-proper?  What the verse does not say is God the Father and God the Son—and completely omits the Holy Spirit!  This is far from being “consistent with Trinitarianism” as Dalcour merely pontificates above.

*Moreover, Paul is writing post-Pentecost where Peter (with whom Paul had already deliberated) has identified these same titles of Jesus as referring to “who you crucified,” viz., the God-Man opposite a preexistent divinity.  That is, contextually, these titles elucidate and celebrate the majestic cross-work of Jesus.

(Dalcour):  Two distinct persons, the sole person of the Father (who is eiJV) and the sole person of Lord Jesus (who is also eiJV).  To argue that the double usage of eiJV represents both the Father and Lord Jesus defies the plain and natural reading here, Compare Eph. 4:4-5 and 1 Tim. 2:5, where, as with 1 Cor. 8:6, the multiple use eiJV preceding both the Father and Jesus heavily challenges and clearly refutes the Oneness perspective of eiJV and a unitarian Jesus.

*We are rather confused by this assertion made by Dalcour (?).  I have not argued the “double usage” of the masculine singular εἷς, Dalcour has!  I actually presented the sole usage of the masculine singular adjective as carefully employed by Christ when designating “the most important commandment” in the Bible—which Dalcour himself states “most of the time” means “one person” (although he then amusingly attempts to spin away from it)!  Speaking of defying the “plain and natural reading” of biblical passages, perhaps Dalcour will once again take his own medicine at Colossians 2.9—as well as the entirety of the biblical presentation of God:

For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily (NKJV).  

*Will Dalcour stick by his guns here and accept the “plain and natural reading” of this text (as well as the Greek text)?  Cf. Isaiah 9.6; chpp. 42-44; etc. ad nauseum.

*We are rather curious as to what Dalcour thinks Ephesians 4.4-5 proves?  In fact, when describing the Holy Spirit in v. 4 Paul uses the neuter singular adjective rendered “one” (lit., ἓν πνεῦμα)—which Dalcour informs us demands more than one person at John 10.30!  Thus, using his own criterion, he now has more than one divine person within the Holy Spirit! Further, v. 5 vindicates the Oneness message by affirming that there is “one (εἷς) Lord, one faith, one baptism.”

*Presumably Dalcour means v. 6 in another of his mis-citations above, which states εἷς θεὸς καὶ πατὴρ – lit., “one God and Father” (and, why not make two divine persons out of “God and Father” Mr. Dalcour?).  Note again the Pauline connection and linkage of the nouns translated “God” and (καὶ) “Father,” revealing that for Paul, the sole God was the Father.  Hence, when Paul utilizes these nouns (often interchangeably) he has “the Father” in mind as the one “God” (cf. I Corinthians 8.6; [see also John 17.3]).  That is, within the Pauline corpus “God” is the same as saying “the Father” as demonstrated in Ephesians 4.6.  We have already established above via I Corinthians 8.6 that, for Paul, the appellation “Lord” refers to the “Christ”—or the God-Man (God descendent)—contra Dalcour’s conjectured preexistent God-persons.

*I Timothy 2.5 (NASB):  For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.  This passage most certainly does not help Dalcour either since it specifically identifies Jesus in His mediatorial role as “the man” (ἄνθρωπος), Christ Jesus.  In the clearest way this verse offers a positive affirmation that the NT terms “God” and “Christ” denote an ontological distinction between the “one” invisible-omnipresent God and the “one” visible-limited “Christ”—whom Paul would go on to identify as this very self-same God enfleshed a little later in this same letter (I Timothy 3.16).  One would think that Trinitarians like Dalcour would sprint from this verse quicker than Hillary would from the FBI!    

*Moreover, this text states that there is εἷς Θεός (lit., “one God”)—whom Dalcour informs us is defined as a Trinity.  If “God” equals a Trinity for Dalcour then he has now unwittingly placed “Christ Jesus” outside of his Trinity altogether!  If Dalcour counters that the noun translated “God” (Θεός) most generally describes the Father in the NT (as pointed out above), he will then have to shape-shift this explication when the noun is applied to Christ in the very same epistle (i.e., I Timothy 3.16 [cf. Dean Burgon at this variant]; cf., e.g., John 1.1; Titus 2.13; I John 5.20; et al.).  At this point Dalcour will likely appeal to his (mis)understanding of the supposed context (cf., e.g., Philippians 2.5-8) in an effort to dodge his usual double standards and imbalanced scales.  

*So far, Dalcour’s misapplication(s) of various grammatical “rules” above has unwittingly produced multiple persons within (i) the Father, (ii) the Son, and (iii) the Holy Spirit!  The way Dalcour’s grammatical “rules” continue to multiply divinities he should drop the verbal confession of “Monotheism” altogether and just join up with the Hindus!  I mean why even fake it any longer?  

(Dalcour):  Perkins simply dismisses all of this when he says:

This is the adjective [eiJV] carefully and intentionally employed by Jesus when specifically describing God’s numerical identity.”

(Dalcour):  Again, this only shows how controlled Perkins and Oneness believers are to a unitarian a priori assumption.  Perkins as shown is dead wrong in his assessment of what Christ meant.

*First, I could not have “dismissed all of this” in my original refutation against Dalcour – since he had not yet presented these arguments!  Does Dalcour expect me to predict every single dodge he offers (although I am familiar with ca. 95% of them!)?  Silly.

*Second, despite Dalcour’s laborious evasion efforts, Perkins has not been “shown dead wrong” in anything relative to Mark 12.29.  In fact, the diametrical opposite has been “shown”—it is Dalcour who opposes what Christ both said and meant in his effort to reconstruct this key biblical text with his Triune divinity intrusion.

*Third, of course Oneness believers are “controlled” by God’s repeated self-identification as a sole person – Jesus commanded us to (Mark 12.29)!  As pointed out above, over 9,000 times God uses single-person-pronouns to present Himself.  Dalcour vainly attempts to force-feed his “God with God” and “Elohim with Elohim” mantras into thousands and thousands of single-person-pronouns—then charges Oneness believers with supposed “assumption(s)?”  Mind-boggling.  We are exclusively “controlled” by the God-breathed Scriptures allowed to stand on their own strength and unaided by religious tradition(s).    

(Dalcour):  Jesus and the NT never once saw or called Jesus the Father.  Rather He is the monogenhV qeoV (John 1:18);  He was the Son who was worship as God, (God commanding the all the angels to worship God, the Son; Heb. 1:6);  the Son is the YHWH of Isa. 45:23 (Phil. 2:9-10);  and the YHWH of John 2:32 (Rom. 10:13);  and the YHWH of Ps. 102:25-27, the unchangeable Creator (Heb. 1:10-12);  and the YHWH that Isiah saw in Isa. 6 (John 12:39-41)—note, all these are references specifically to the Son.          

*Since Dalcour again erroneously argues from silence perhaps he can point us to the NT passage that “in even one place” (to borrow his terminology) identifies Jesus as the “second of three divine persons in the Trinity:”__________?  Biblical Christians have been waiting on Trinitarians to fill in this blank for almost 2,000 years now!  Worse, Dalcour is flat wrong in his assertion above.  Though he fights this self-declaration of Jesus like a tiger to protect his Triune divinity canard, John 14.8-10 could not be clearer:

(BLB):  8 Philip says to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.”  9 Jesus says to him, “Am I with you so long a time, and you have not known Me, Philip?  The one having seen Me has seen the Father.  How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?  10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me?  The words that I speak to you, I do not speak from Myself;  but the Father dwelling in Me does His works.

*Dalcour typically attempts to dodge this silver bullet from the lips of Jesus Himself by seeking refuge in v. 6, all the while negating the ensuing verses.  However, who would read this text for the first time and—allowing the inspired data to stand alone—identify Jesus as someone other than the One Philip asked to see?  The Trinity doctrine must necessarily be imported into one’s psyche at this point.  If Jesus is not actually the Father in some sense then His response was entirely non-sensical:  “Have I been with you so long a time, and you have not known me, Philip?”

*Note that Christ expressed surprise that Philip did not recognize that the One he was inquiring about was standing right in front of him!  What sense do the words of Jesus make here from the Trinitarian viewpoint?  Note also that Jesus declares that the Father was “dwelling” (present active participial verb μένων) within Him.  Again, how can it be said that one omnipresent divine person literally indwells another omnipresent divine person?  Will Dalcour maintain a straight face while telling us that omnipresence literally indwells omnipresence?  Regarding the identity of Jesus as the sole biblical God cf. also Matthew 28.18-20; John 12.45, 17.11; Colossians 2.8-10; I John 5.20; etc. ad-nauseum.

*Concerning Dalcour’s oft-repeated appeal to Hebrews 1.6, though this has been pointed out to him repeatedly, the very fact that the angels had to be commanded to worship God’s Son (or, as Dalcour says above, “God commanding the angels to worship God”) demonstrates that they were not already worshiping the Son of God under the OT (contra the Trinitarian understanding of Isaiah 6 in cf. with John 12.41).  Or, would Dalcour have us believe that God ordered the angels to do what He had been observing them already do from all of eternity?

*Exegetically, the temporal particle-conjunction translated “when” (ὅταν) at the beginning of Hebrews 1.6 is explicating the action of the main aorist subjunctive verb (εἰσαγάγῃ; lit., “He brings”).  Simply, the command to worship the Son of God was performed “when…He brings the firstborn into the world”—clearly militating against Dalcour’s theologically-driven notion that this same action was being practiced from eternity-past.         

(Dalcour):  The, Perkins amazingly cites Trinitarian A. T. Roberson in response to my original citation.  I say “amazingly” because as, Perkins certainly knows, Robertson saw all forms of Oneness unitarian theology as heretical.  When Perkins (and other Oneness defenders) appeals to numerous Trinitarian grammarians and scholars, I suppose he sees them as “hostile witnesses.”

*Of course I cited Robertson at John 10.30 inasmuch as his oft repeated quote backfires on Trinitarians in general at Mark 12.29 (et al.) and Dalcour in particular at Galatians 3.28!  And, I suppose Dalcour thinks Oneness believers should view Trinitarian attacks as “friendly witnesses” contra “hostile?”  Yet, we wonder if this is how Dalcour sees those who oppose his (false) Trinity doctrine?  Me-thinks not.  Once again, Dalcour needs to take his own medicine before writing prescriptions for others!   

(Dalcour):  Since Perkins does have a reputation of misquoting sources, before citing Perkins’ analysis of what he feels Robertson meant, let us read in full (since I only cited partial) the grammatical comments of Robertson said pertaining to the neuter adjective eJn in John 10:30:

*Actually, as repeatedly demonstrated overhead Dalcour is the theological ventriloquist—speaking with a voice foreign to the Greek text(s).  He constantly misquotes and misapplies the original languages of the Bible (he does the same thing with the Hebrew of the OT).  And yes, by all means let’s read Robertson’s full quote below in considering the straightforward assertion of Jesus’s usage of the masculine singular adjective heis in describing God’s numerical identity at Mark 12.29 as the “most important commandment.”  Let’s follow along carefully!      

(Dalcour quoting Robertson):  “One (en).  Neuter, not masculine (ei). Not one person (cf. ei in Galatians 3:28), but one essence or nature.  By the plural sumu (separate persons) Sabellius is refuted, by unum Arius.  So Bengel rightly argues, though Jesus is not referring, of course, to either Sabellius or Arius.  The Pharisees had accused Jesus of making himself equal with God as his own special Father (John 5:18).  Jesus then admitted and proved this claim (John 5:19-30).  Now he states it tersely in this great saying repeated later (John 17:11, 21 John 21).  Note en used in 1 Corinthians 3:3 of the oneness in work of the planter and the waterer and in Jo 17:11 Jo 17:23 of the hoped for unity of Christ’s disciples. This crisp statement is the climax of Christ’s claims concerning the relation between the Father and himself (the Son).  They stir the Pharisees to uncontrollable anger (Word Pictures, emphasis added).”

*Note above that Robertson shamelessly endorsed “separate” divine persons within God—which Dalcour adamantly and openly rejects!  As usual, Dalcour cherry-picks what suits his theological fancy and then denies what militates against the same.  Dr. Robertson apparently misquotes I Corinthians 3.3 since the adjective ἕν does not appear in this passage.  Presumably Robertson intended to reference v. 8 instead of v. 3.  If Dalcour were a more careful student of God’s Word he would have recognized this mistake and not have endorsed it—all the while he attempts to correct others for their supposed “sloppiness.”

*Regardless, observe that Robertson’s cross-references in usage of the neuter-singular ἕν describe separate human beings, i.e., I Corinthians 3.3 (8?), John 17.11 and John 17.23.  Dalcour marshals these references in his attempted rehabilitation and defense of the Trinity doctrine once again demonstrating his conceptual Tritheism.  That is, Trinitarians like Dalcour frequently and flagrantly appeal to the concept of separate human beings as the reflection of their Triune divinity and yet still somehow feign supposed “monotheism” with a straight face!      

(Dalcour):  Incongruent to what Robertson actually said, Perkins comments:  

Robertson’s point is that if Christ would have employed the masculine singular (3-3) adjective heis (translated ‘one’) in John 10.30 then this would have demanded ‘one person’—since this is the natural force of the masculine singular tag.  However, as mentioned both above and elsewhere Jesus does indeed use the masculine singular heis in delineating the ‘most important commandment’ of the emphatic-monadic identity of God (Mark 12.29).

(Dalcour):  Perkins is unequivocally wrong.  Robertson made no such point.

*Actually, Perkins is unequivocally correct!  As pointed out to Trinitarians ad nauseum, Robertson’s point was that if Christ would have used the masculine singular εἷς contra the neuter singular ἕν at John 10.30 He would have then been presenting one person—which explains Robertson’s comment “not one person.”  Problem for Trinitarian exegetes is that Christ did carefully use the masculine singular εἷς regarding God’s quantitative identity in Mark 12.29 (as well as other passages) in explicating the “most important commandment.”  Thus using Trinitarian exegete’s own premise – down goes their entire Triune divinity conjecture!

(Dalcour):  Again,  “Not one person (cf. ei in Galatians 3:28), but one essence or nature. By the plural sumu (separate persons) Sabellius is refuted.”  Oh my, it seems as though Perkins may assume that no will fact-check his sources—in context.  The point of fact, Robertson bluntly refutes Perkins position—“Neuter, not masculine (ei).  Not one person.”      

*And again, Robertson openly affirms “separate” persons and specifically cross references Galatians 3.28 in expounding on the force of εἷς—both of which Dalcour denies!  Before Dalcour gets too excited above he might need to “fact-check” his own sources since he’s been repeatedly caught red-handed with his hands in the proverbial cookie jar.  Again, I have numerous other fumbles by Dalcour.  The “point of fact” is that Robertson bluntly refutes both himself and Dalcour when his own exegetical claim is applied to biblical mandates such as Mark 12.29, James 2.19, Galatians 3.20, etc.

(Dalcour):  I understand that Perkin (and many Oneness believers) is very passionate (and always seems very angry) in promoting what he believes to be true.  Although, Oneness theology is clearly not according to the teachings of the biblical authors—it does matter.

*This is nothing more than another of Dalcour’s ad hominem attacks.  I could just as easily join the countless voices that have pointed out Dalcour’s obvious arrogance and pomp (a natural outgrowth of his non-Christian “Calvinism” cult).  Further, I do not “believe” anything other than what the Scriptures actually command me to “believe”—which is the very source of my rejection of Dalcour’s fictitious Triune divinity (or, as Dalcour repeatedly claims, “God with God” absurdity).

(Dalcour):  On this point, again citing Trinitarians, Perkins refers to footnote in the NET translation, which was edited by Daniel Wallace, Greek grammar and textual authority, and Yes, solidly Trinitarian:

*As noted previously, theological bias should have no place in the direct translation of θεόπνευστος (God-breathed) Scripture – and we really don’t know what Dalcour thinks this proves (?).  To solidly drive this point home, Dalcour often appeals to the Jewish Aramaic Targums and the LXX in his desperation to locate the Son of God in the OT with the “Angel of the LORD.”  Yet, both of these ancient Jewish translations openly (and rightfully) reject Dalcour’s “co-eternal Trinity” doctrine!  Now what Mr. Dalcour?    

(Dalcour requoting my cf. to the NET tn):  “See here also the NET translator notes:  The phrase ἕν ἐσμεν ({en esmen) is a significant assertion with trinitarian implications.  ἕν is neuter, not masculine, so the assertion is not that Jesus and the Father are one person, but one ‘thing’”

(Dalcour):  Note that Wallace has written countless works on the Trinity and has definitely commented on the many passages that exegetically prove it.  Perkins shoots himself in the foot here; he seems to be uninformed.  We as with Wallace, see John 10:30 as totally opposing the Oneness-unitarian view that Jesus and the Father are the same person, rather they are one in essence and unity (one thing, not one person).  

*Again, Dalcour omits both the “context” and remainder of my quotes in the above partial citation.  Far from being misinformed or shooting myself in the foot with this self-refuting quote from the NET translators notes, here is the remainder of my original excerpt that Dalcour neglected to include in his extract overhead:

Of course, this only serves as another lexical testimony to the force of the masculine singular heis as demanding “one person.”  And, as we point out above, there are no “implications” of Trinitarianism in John 10.30 as evidenced by the response of the original audience of this message.

(Dalcour):  Then Perkins goes on to complain about the contextual understanding of eJn

*Actually, Perkins specifically appealed to the “contextual understanding” of this adjective that Dalcour desperately flails to explain away – as anyone can plainly read in my original (partially quoted) article below.  Nice try though Mr. Dalcour.

(Dalcour):  In John 17:21, for example, Jesus prays that His disciples may “be one [hen] even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us.”  The same neuter adjective is used. . . .

(Dalcour requoting my response to his original assertion immediately above):  *Note here that in Jesus’ High Priestly prayer He is praying that His disciples—who were separate human beings and not merely ‘distinct persons’—would share in the same oneness as the Father and Him shared.  Since Dalcour is appealing to this passage in connection with the neuter sing. hen (translated ‘one’), will he now inform us that God the Father and ‘God the Son’ are equally as radically separated as human beings, and each are fully God?  Or will he now modify this assertion to conform to his predisposed religious tradition?”

(Dalcour):  Perkins again ignores the context of the entire chapter.  Unity Mr. Perkins—that is the idea being expressed here, as the statements directed to Jesus disciples clearly indicate.  Thus, the context governs the meaning of the neuter.      

*Nice dodge Mr. Dalcour, but this does not explain why nor how you repeatedly appeal to passages that describe radically separated human beings as the model for your Trinity theory (betraying your Tritheistic paradigm)—then attempt to spin away from the same template when your incongruence is pointed out.  Merely throwing out the word “context” does not serve as the same.

*Stay tuned for the final installation (IV) of this surrejoinder against Dalcour.  Thank you for reading and may God bless! 

Exegetical Surrejoinder πρὸς Edward Dalcour (II)

*The following is the second in a tetralogy of exegetical surrejoinders toward Edward Dalcour’s assertions found in his article HERE.  I have copied Mr. Dalcour’s claims in *black with my categorical responses immediately following, as here.  Enjoy!

(Dalcour):  As he consistently does with other passages Perkins attempts to modalize (esp. John 1:1; 10:30; 17:5 et al).  Perkins here is utterly discounted from the context of chapter 10—where Jesus and the Father are plainly repeatedly differentiated.

*This is nothing more than Dalcour’s usual pontificating since the “context” of John 10 – particularly how the original audience understood the words they heard – is the very thing that refutes Dalcour’s fictitious “multi-personed-divinity” canard.  Of course, I specifically referenced this in my original article.  Simply, I have no need to “attempt” anything with biblical passages.  I merely allow the scriptural statements to inform my conclusion contra allowing my conclusions to inform the biblical statements, as does Dalcour.

*Moreover, as we’ve repeatedly informed inattentive Trinitarians like Dalcour the ontological and functional distinctions between God and His Son are readily and gladly acknowledged by Oneness believers.  However, Dalcour assumes that distinction automatically translates into multiple God-persons.  It does not—despite how many tantrums Dalcour throws and screams otherwise.  Nice try though Mr. Dalcour!    

(Dalcour):  Note the consistency of the passages leading up to v. 30 the following:

*Yes, but don’t omit vv. 30-33 as Dalcour does in the following—keep reading!  Note also below how Dalcour plays textual leap frog in jumping from v. 18 to v. 29 and then on to v. 36—excluding all of the verses in between (all the while complaining about supposed “hermeneutical flaws”).

(Dalcour):  Verse 15:  “even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep.”

*We really don’t understand what Dalcour assumes this validates regarding his multi-personed-divinity hypothesis (?).  I am thinking that Dalcour speculates that because Jesus refers to His Father with otherness language in this passage that this demands that Jesus is not the Father.  However, this is nothing more than Trinitarian theology read into the text (eisegesis) contra allowing the text to speak for itself.  To demonstrate, Jesus equally referred to “God,” “the Son of Man” and “the Christ” as if someone other than Himself (e.g., John 14.1; Mark 14.62; Luke 24.46).  We are wondering how consistent Dalcour will be in his “hermeneutics” at this point (?).  I predict the usual spin-away-from-it tactics will immediately begin!  

(Dalcour): Verses 17-18:  “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again.  18 No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative.  I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again.  This commandment I received from My Father.”

*Unbeknownst to Dalcour, if used to explicate a Triune divinity this verse demands that each divine person necessarily possesses their own individual mind or center of consciousness.  That is, if God the Son has His “own initiative” apart from God the Father and God the Holy Spirit then each person equally holds individual mental faculties apart from the others—the very core definition of polytheism.

*Moreover, how could an ontologically co-equal God the Son “receive commandment(s)” from another ontologically co-equal God-person?  The usual Trinitarian evasion of this dilemma is to assert that Oneness believers here confuse ontological co-equality with the voluntary functional roles of each person in the Trinity.  However, as pointed out above, this assumes the destination at the starting line (not to mention how this again embraces several divine minds within God)!  That is, such an inadequate explanation presupposes a Triune divinity at the outset and then argues from this false premise (another Dalcour fallacy).  Hence, Dalcour begins at his intended goal and then circles the wagon until he surmises that he has arrived.           

(Dalcour):  Verse 29:  “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.”

*Note here how Dalcour leap frogs from v. 18 to v. 29—omitting a total of 11 verses in his exegesis—in an attempt to swat at any shadow he thinks validates his theological aspirations (then charges Oneness believers with poor “hermeneutics”?).

*And, again, how can it be said that the first co-equal God-person is “greater” (μεῖζόν) than the second and third co-equal God-persons?  How could one co-equal, co-eternal, God-person “give” believers to another co-equal, co-eternal God-person?  Wouldn’t He already possess these believers from all of eternity (esp. within Dalcour’s “elect” soteriology)?  This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever despite how hard Dalcour tries to evade the obvious regarding Christ’s “greater” language (e.g., John 14.28; prayers of Jesus; etc.).  I am forever grateful that the biblical God led me out of Trinitarianism into biblical Christianity and Monotheism.

(Dalcour):  Verse 36:  “If He [i.e., the Father] called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken),  36 do you say of Him [Jesus], whom the Father sanctified and sent into the world, ‘You are blaspheming,’ because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’?”

*Note above how Christ affirms that “the Scripture cannot be broken”—yet this is the very thing that Trinitarians offer as they posit a disjuncture between the OT identity of God and the NT identity of God.  Indeed, in opposing the words of Christ (John 4.22) Dalcour has asserted that the “full revelation” of God did not come until the NT!  According to this construct every OT Hebrew prophet and Jew did not have a “full” understanding of Yahveh’s identity—even though His monadic identity was the very basis of Israel’s exclusive covenant!  

*Further, would Dalcour have us believe that the supposed first divine co-equal, co-eternal person “sanctified” (ἡγίασεν) the second divine co-equal, co-eternal person?  How can it be said that God the Son could be “sanctified” in eternity and “sent” into earth?  Can omnipresence be “sent” where it already exists?  Such ludicrous ideas are esp. contradictory to the Trinitarian notion that the Son of God “volunteered” based upon their misunderstanding of Philippians 2.5-8.  This text directly refutes such conjecture.

(Dalcour):  Verse 38:  “so that you may know and understand that the Father is in [en, thus, not “am”] Me, and I in the Father.”

*This is simply another case of Dalcour’s usual special pleading.  He asserts that because Christ says the Father dwells “in” Him (ἐν + dative) that this somehow demands that Jesus is not the Father.  However, would Dalcour have us believe that one omnipresent divine person indwells another omnipresent divine person?  Here Dalcour is left hanging on the horns of a dilemma:  Either the divine persons of his Trinity are not omnipresent—and hence not possessive of full Godhood properties—or the passage carries a metaphorical denotation.  The choice is his since he has marshaled this verse in defense of his Triune divinity.

*Of course, none of Dalcour’s earth-shattering passages above present a problem for Oneness believers since we readily acknowledge the unity between God and His Son—and we have attempted to communicate this to Trinitarians ad nauseum.  Yet, it’s a gross assumption to teach that this denies Jesus’s clear statements of identity as equally the Father (John 14.8-10) and the Holy Spirit (John 14.16-18).            

(Dalcour):  Clearly, no one who reads this chapter for the first time would never get the idea that Jesus was the same person as the Father.  One would have to be taught the Oneness notion trading the natural reading for a stroppy modified one.

*This is easily turned around:  Clearly, no one who reads the biblical data as a whole for the first time would arrive at a “three-personed-divinity” conclusion.  One would have to be taught the “Trinity” notion, trading the natural reading of thousands upon thousands of biblical verses for a convoluted-forced interpretation.

*For example, I read John 1.1-18 for many years before I ever heard that Trinitarians attempt to use these verses to validate their theological conclusions.  It never once crossed my mind that these passages were describing more than one divine person in the Godhead.  In fact, these Scriptures are among the strongest in support of the Oneness position – despite how hard Trinitarians scream otherwise.  Dalcour himself acknowledges that even most Trinitarians hold to the Oneness position until the Trinity is imported into their psyche.  Here is a quote from the preface of his own book:

In fact, I find that Christians who have not been adequately taught about the Trinity make the same error. Thus, unstudied Christians too often unknowingly affirm Oneness theology in their efforts to explain how Jesus is God.

*Isn’t it amazing how so many Trinitarians “too often” arrive at the Oneness position by simply allowing the Scriptures alone to instruct them—but have to be “adequately taught” the Trinity?!  Typical Trinitarian hypocrisy.  And, speaking of trading a natural reading for an unnatural reading:

Thus says the LORD, your Redeemer, and the one who formed you from the womb, “I, the LORD, am the maker of all things, Stretching out the heavens by Myself And spreading out the earth all alone,” (Isaiah 44.24; NASB)

I, even I, am the LORD, And there is no savior besides Me.” (Isaiah 43.11; NASB)

*Who would read these texts for the first time—allowing their natural force to stand alone—and arrive at the Triune divinity hypothesis?  No one without a theological agenda.  Dalcour crams his imaginary three-divine-persons into these texts above (as well as countless others).  This does not even take into consideration the absolute masculine singular participles, single-person-pronouns, etc. of these Hebrew (and LXX) texts…a whole different article!   Simply, Dalcour’s “multiple Creators” eisegesis cannot withstand linguistic analysis at this point despite his superficial delineation between the “persons” vs. the “being” of God.

(Dalcour):  More grammatical errors.  Perkins then ties a loose around the neck of his argument when he makes the assertion regarding nominatives and “subject object distinctions,” which Perkins calls, “the contextual subject-object distinction.”  Because of Perkins’ lack of understanding in area of Greek grammar, he assumes his pretext (what he feels v. 30 means) based on his misunderstanding of 1) what a nominative and a predicate are and 2) subject object distinctions between Jesus and the Father.

*Ironically, as demonstrated above (and below) it is Dalcour who (i) misunderstands the Greek texts in this and many other verses, and (ii) who forces his theology into these texts—a text that never states the same (to Dalcour’s annoyance).  Further, I fully understand the meaning of the two nominatives; viz., a compound subject that is contextually identified as “God” and “man” (v. 33).  Worse, I specifically pointed this out in my original article.  Dalcour simply doesn’t know what he’s talking about here.

(Dalcour):  First, it is clear from the Perkins statement, “In John 10.30 both the 1st person pronoun translated “I” and the noun translated “Father” (Πατὴρ) appear in the nominative case, singular number,” which he then sneaks in his conclusion, that Perkins just doesn’t know what two nominatives in a sentence indicates in light of the PLURAL verb.

*Actually, Perkins was crystal-clear to address both the nominatives and the plural verb.  One has to wonder at this point if Dalcour was even reading the same article!  As to be expected, Dalcour assumes that the plural verb ἐσμεν used in this text demands a plurality of divine persons, each with independent-divine minds.  However, the actual biblical data and plain context itself refutes this notion.  To Dalcour’s embarrassment Jesus did not use the adjective translated “two” (δύο) as He normally did when “two persons” were in view (e.g., Matthew 21.28; Luke 15.11).  That is necessarily force fed into the mouth of Christ by over-zealous Trinitarians like Dalcour.

*Nevertheless, let me attempt to help Dalcour once again:  Two nominatives connected by a plural verb simply denote a compound subject – “I and the Father.”  However, we are not informed anything whatsoever about the nature or identity of this compound subject until the original audience informs us that “you, being a man (nominative ἄνθρωπος), make yourself God (accusative Θεόν)” (v. 33).  Hence, once again, the context itself defines this plural subject for us – “God” and “man.”  This is the second time I have pointed this out to Dalcour and am not quite sure how to accommodate his apparent willful misunderstandings at this point.

*But, since he won’t believe the inspired text itself perhaps he will believe my Greek professor (a [very kind] Trinitarian!), Dr. Maury Robertson, regarding these passages (?).  Here is his usually congenial response concerning Dalcour’s grammatical assertions:

You’re right that there’s nothing particularly important about the two nominatives.  You have it exactly right:  just a compound subject.  The way I read it, Jesus (εγω) is simply saying He is one with the Father.  What exactly that “oneness” entails is for theologians to debate.  There isn’t any grammatical magic in the verse to shed light on the issue that I can see.

 Sorry if I’m missing something!

*Alas, Dalcour is once again caught with his hand in the grammatical cookie jar—and he does this type of thing all the time!  As stated above, Dr. Robertson identifies theologically as a Trinitarian and is a very kind and gracious man.  Perhaps Dalcour will believe this Greek professor since he rejects the biblical data itself (?)!

(Dalcour):  Most Oneness people in an embarrassing way, error on this grammatical point at John 1:1, wherein we find two nominatives (qeoV and logoV).  They typically argue that the two must carry the meaning of the mathematical equal sign (A=B, B=A).  But as NT Greek scholars/grammarians (e.g., Robertson, Reymond, Harris, Wallace, Greenly et al), point out the qeoV and logoV in 1:1c are NOT a convertible proposition, rather a subset proposition (cf. Wallace, BBGG).  As a qualitative noun, the Word in John 1:1c is in the class or category of the anarthrous pre-Verbal PN qeoV, but the Word is not the person of ton qeon (1:1b, viz., the Father).

*As usual, Dalcour froths at the mouth here over what he assumes John 1.1 is communicating (John 1.1 was not even discussed in the original article).  Briefly, if θεὸς (“God”) in John 1.1c is classified as a “definitive” noun the Oneness position is concluded according to many exegetes – and Dalcour simply cannot have that!  Worse, Dalcour omits pertinent data from Dr. Wallace in his reference above—all the while charging me of doing the same.  Here’s what Dalcour removes from his audience’s consideration (and that they most assuredly neglect to fact check him on):

(GGBB; p. 268):  Therefore, if the same person being referred to there is called θεός in 1:1c, then in both places it is definite.  Although certainly possible grammatically (though not nearly as likely as qualitative), the evidence is not very compelling.  The vast majority of definite anarthrous pre-verbal predicate nominatives are monadic, in genitive constructions, or are proper names, none of which is true here, diminishing the likelihood of a definite θεός in John 1:1c.

*Although he ultimately rejects its application at 1.1c, in Dr. Wallace’s quote above he concedes in honest fashion that the definitive force of the anarthrous preverbal PN (Θεὸς) in John 1.1c is “certainly possible grammatically.”  And, even many Trinitarian exegetes respectfully disagree with Dr. Wallace at this point (e.g., Carson, Blomberg, McGaughy, Goetchius, etc.).  Why doesn’t this quote from Wallace make it into Dalcour’s book – esp. since he quotes from the same page?  Or, why didn’t the following quotes survive from Dr. Wallace’s exegetical reference work in Dalcour’s book (?):

(GGBB: By Colwell Himself; fn. #8):  Nevertheless, from one perspective it (i.e., Colwell’s Rule) is quite acceptable. Colwell brought to NT students’ attention that anarthrous pre-verbal PNs were frequently definite.  He provided many undisputed examples of this and thus established a clear category of usage.

(GGBB): 5.  Significance of Colwell’s Construction for Exegesis:  A general rule about the construction can now be stated:  An anarthrous pre-verbal PN is normally qualitative, sometimes definite, and only rarely indefinite.

*Now, let’s watch Dalcour’s fancy footwork begin folks!  Or, perhaps Dalcour will appreciate Dr. D.A. Carson’s quote regarding the definite contra qualitative application of the anarthrous preverbal PN Θεὸς in 1.1c:

(D.A. Carson; The Gospel Accrding to John; Pillar NT; John 1.1):  More, the Word was God.  That is the translation demanded by the Greek structure, theos ēn ho logos.  A long string of writers has argued that because theos, ‘God’, here has no article, John is not referring to God as a specific being, but to mere qualities of ‘God-ness’.  The Word, they say, was not God, but divine.  This will not do.  There is a perfectly serviceable word in Greek for ‘divine’ (namely theios).

More importantly, there are many places in the New Testament where the predicate noun has no article, and yet is specific.  Even in this chapter, ‘you are the King of Israel’ (1:49) has no article before ‘King’ in the original (cf. also Jn. 8:39; 17:17; Rom. 14:17; Gal. 4:25; Rev. 1:20).  It has been shown that it is common for a definite predicate noun in this construction, placed before the verb, to be anarthrous (that is, to have no article; cf. Additional Note).  Indeed, the effect of ordering the words this way is to emphasize ‘God’, as if John were saying, ‘and the word was God!’  In fact, if John had included the article, he would have been saying something quite untrue.

*Who is now erring “in an embarrassing way on this grammatical point?”  I have many more quotes that speak to this end if Dalcour still needs them.  Of course, Dalcour will surely attempt to dodge yet another of his mishaps here by complaining that Carson and Wallace are Trinitarians—all the while he appeals to Dr. Joseph Thayer who was a Unitarian-proper that openly denied that Jesus was God Almighty.  Further, I hardly doubt that Dalcour agrees with the soteriological views that were held by Drs. Greenlee, Walter Bauer, et al. in toto!

*Ironically, Dalcour joins Thayer in this concept (albeit not confession) as he relegates Christ from His biblical identity as the One OT Yahveh revealed as a human being for the purpose of redemption to a mere second of three, co-equal, co-eternal divine persons (and even unwittingly argues for bodily separation within the Godhead).  Of course, all of this is completely lost on Dalcour in his lather to protect his Triune divinity fabrication.

(Dalcour):  Again, Perkins stands alone, he has no recognized scholar to which he can appeal—because they reject the Oneness interpretation both historically and present day.  No Greek grammarian has ever concluded, by the grammar of the passage, a Oneness interpretation of John 1:1.  

*Argumentum Ad Populum alert – quick, somebody grab their Bible!  We suppose that Dalcour thinks Thayer—again, to whom he appeals quite often—concluded the Trinitarian interpretation of John 1.1 “by the grammar of the passage” (?).  Or, that grammarians like Greenlee, Bauer, et al. arrived at Dalcour’s particular brand of Calvinism (since there are so many variables)?

*Or, perhaps Dalcour assumes that the Jews that he often appeals to in the Targums have also concluded his Triune divinity conjecture?  This does not even consider how Dalcour repeatedly appeals to NT letters where both the authors and recipients were tongue-talkers who had already been baptized in Jesus’ name—a doctrine that Dalcour fights in his effort to reject the biblical Christ.  This is the typical double standard employed by Dalcour and other Trinitarian apologists – all the while crying out for “equal standards” from Muslim apologists.

(Dalcour):  Perkins seems in a dense fog here, for first he merely throws out there that v. 30 contains two singular nominatives, but never explains what the significance of it is.  And since he never mentions nor explains the function of the predicate (the other nominative), it indicates to me that he does not understand neither what a nominative nor predicate are or what they do.

*Dalcour should attempt to work out of his own smog first:  As usual, Dalcour does not supply what he demands in others.  For neither does he inform his audience of the function of either the nominative or the predicate.  Even worse, I pointedly addressed the compound subject in my treatment of the plural verb—and directly appealed to both the grammar and context.  Additionally, I specifically posted numerous verses where a single verb explicates both God and His Son – which Dalcour completely ignored (dense fog indeed!).  Again, the predicate (dependent) nominative links the plural finite verb to the subject(s).     

(Dalcour):  The large issue here is this:  that there are two nominatives in the passage is meaningless WITHOUT a context.  This has been the chief flaw in his hermeneutic throughout his writings and presentations.  So when he offers his so-called reply to my tersely article, he stays consistent in his lack of contextual interaction.  The construction simply and typically marks out distinction from the subject and predicate (complement).

*Well, yes, that’s the point I made both above and initially.  I’m not really sure what Dalcour thinks this proves.  And, we are still awaiting Dalcour’s earth-shattering “exegesis” of John 10.30 (?).  Apparently he thinks that merely referencing the two nominatives – that I originally pointed out – and a plural verb constitutes “exegesis” (this is one reason we refer to Dalcour as Eisegesis Ed)! 

(Dalcour):  And again demonstrating Perkins lack of familiarity of Greek grammar, the linking PLURAL verb unities the subject and the predicate together in which grammatically the subject and the subject complement are “essentially” one—not one person—rather PLURAL verb is used, esmen, not a singular one (estin, eimi, “is, am”);  and both nominative are associated as the main topic of the sentence.

*First, it would really help if Dalcour would wipe the foam from his mouth and actually take the time to proof-read his poor writing style—as has been noted by others as well.  Second, as demonstrated both above and below it is Dalcour who repeatedly blunders regarding original language research via his bias and outright misinformation at times.  Indeed, all one has to do is take the time to carefully and objectively fact-check his assertions to catch his mistakes.  I am honestly surprised at how gullible some Trinitarians can be sometimes.  One would think that eternal, first-order doctrines would be something worth analyzing evenhandedly and impartially.   

*Third, I have repeatedly pointed out to Dalcour and other Trinitarian apologists that an exegesis using balanced scales will equally emphasize single verbs used to explicate God and His Son.  That is, if Dalcour insists that the plural verb ἐσμεν modifying God and the Son of God in this verse demands more than one divine, co-eternal, co-equal person then why doesn’t he stick by his guns in passages that employ the single verb ἐστιν that he asks for above?  Dalcour’s plural verb obsession is not as earth shattering as he assumes – and Oneness believers have been addressing this argument for years on end now.  Since Dalcour apparently missed these passages where singular verbs simultaneously modify both the Father and the Son of God as the same subject here they are again:

Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus, direct our way to you.  (I Thessalonians 3.11; Berean Literal Bible)

Αὐτὸς δὲ ὁ θεὸς καὶ πατὴρ ἡμῶν καὶ ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦς κατευθύναι τὴν ὁδὸν ἡμῶν πρὸς ὑμᾶς·  (NA28)

*The Greek verb rendered “direct” (κατευθύναι) above appears in the aorist, active, optative, 3rd person, singular form describing the activity of the Father and Jesus.  Will Trinitarians be consistent in their verbal appeals at this point?  Or, will they now offer the usual spin-away-from-it tact?  

Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word.  (2 Thessalonians 2.16-17; NASB)

Αὐτὸς δὲ ὁ κύριος ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦς Χριστὸς καὶ [ὁ] θεὸς ὁ πατὴρ ἡμῶν ὁ ἀγαπήσας ἡμᾶς καὶ δοὺς παράκλησιν αἰωνίαν καὶ ἐλπίδα ἀγαθὴν ἐν χάριτι, παρακαλέσαι ὑμῶν τὰς καρδίας καὶ στηρίξαι ἐν παντὶ ἔργῳ καὶ λόγῳ ἀγαθῷ.  (NA28)

*As noted in our first surrejoinder below, the four verbs (two in participial form) above used to explicate the action of the same subject – God the Father and Christ – are all singular, not plural.  Where are all the blog posts and lectures from Trinitarians concerning these singular verbs that modify God and His Son?  Clearly John 10.30 militates against Dalcour’s Trinity doctrine—which is why he expends so much energy attempting to negate its natural reading.      

(Dalcour):  Unbeknownst to Perkins (or he a point he chooses to overlook), Subject–Object and Subject-Hearer distinctions between Jesus and the Father interspersed throughout the NT radically disproves the Oneness position.

*Silly.  Unbeknownst to Dalcour, subject-object distinctions do not “radically disprove” a single thing as it relates to biblical monotheism and/or Oneness dogma.  We have told Trinitarians ad-nauseum that Oneness believers gladly acknowledge the distinctions between God and His Son and we have carefully explicated these same biblical distinctions.  In fact, these distinctions lie at the very heart of the biblical/Oneness message.  What does Dalcour do with our open confessions?  Defiantly stick his fingers in his ears and continue parroting the same straw man attacks!

(Dalcour):  In fact, this feature alone is one of the most controverting arguments against the Oneness unitarian notion of Jesus being the Father.  For example, “After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water … behold, a voice out of the heavens said, ‘This is My [speaker] beloved Son, [hearer] in whom I [speaker] am well-pleased’” (Matt. 3:16-17; also Matt. 17:5);  “I [speaker] glorified You [hearer] on earth, having accomplished the work which You [hearer] have given Me [speaker] to do” (John 17:4; cf. also Luke 23:34, 46).  Jesus personally and distinctly relates to the Father and the Holy Spirit, and the reverse is altogether true of the Father and the Holy Spirit relating to each other.  That is why I find it very odd that Perkins argue this, when it actually refutes his position.

*We would be very interested in viewing the Scriptures where the Father and the Holy Spirit “personally relate to each other” as Dalcour feigns above:___________?  This is but another erroneous biblical claim made by Dalcour—as well as another hole in the Trinity doctrine.

*Nowhere from Genesis thru Revelation will Dalcour locate the Father and the Holy Spirit addressing one another—nor the Son of God and the Holy Spirit dialoguing with the other.  Nowhere in the biblical data itself does the Holy Spirit love nor speak to the Son or the Father.  Very strange behavior coming from supposed distinct co-eternal divine persons.  Similar to Joseph Smith, I guess Dalcour thinks he can just make up his own Bible and demand that others believe it!

*Further, Dalcour’s typical Trinitarian appeal to the baptism of Christ proves too much!  For if God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are as spatially detached from one another as a human being standing in a river, a voice from Heaven, and the body of a dove—Dalcour need not feign “monotheism” with a straight face any longer (esp. since Dalcour informs us that his divine persons “cannot be separated!”)!  

*Such an imposition into the biblical data would demand radically separated divine beings and not mere “distinct persons” as Trinitarians usually modify in an effort to dodge the obvious bullet of Tritheism.  Additionally, why was there no gasp from the original Jewish audience who were the actual eyewitnesses to this occurrence – since for ca. 4,000 years they had exclusively worshipped one divine person of Yahveh?  If the baptism of Christ taught Dalcour’s Trinity of persons this would have been the first place these supposed spatially separated divine persons arrived on the scene!  Why no such response from the actual on-site observers?  If the original Judaic audience obviously understood this experience as simultaneous manifestations of their one God, opposite multiple God-persons – how can Dalcour offer a radically differing view reading back into this event ca. 2,000 years later?  Once again, Dalcour inflicts this ancient (Judaic) biblical text with his much later Trinitarian theology (e.g., see HERE).

*Stay tuned for our continuing surrejoinders to Dalcour’s assertions.  Thank you for reading.