Mr. Everitt’s First Speech
Bible Evidence For The Trinity
Good evening, Mr. Chairman, Mr. Heaster, ladies and gentlemen.
My task, as I see it at this point, is to show you the Scriptural teaching
that Jesus is Divine.
This can be shown of course in many ways. Indeed, one of the problems
that anyone discussing the subject like this has, is that there is so
much evidence that Jesus is God that it is impossible in the time available
to even begin to touch all of it. All that I can do is to show you something
of the main lines upon which Scripture operates.
Now one thing that is quite clear is that in a number of passages of
scripture, Jesus is called God. The first verse that I will call as witness
to this effect is the first verse of John’s gospel: “In the beginning
was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. The same
was in the beginning with God”. Now that Scripture has, of course, been
the subject of a great deal of discussion. But one thing is perfectly
clear – I have been into this with some care – that when it says “the
Word was God” that is telling us who and what the Word was. It isn’t simply
that Jesus represented God – that is not what it says at all – but that
the Word, which is Jesus, was God. Now I believe our friends, the Christadelphians,
teach that the word “Word” in this context does not refer to Jesus. It
is simply a statement of the purpose of God. And yet when you read the
passage as a whole you find that there are many statements made which
refer to a person by means of an abstraction. Allow me to demonstrate
that. I will continue reading until I get to the point I want to make:
Verse 3: “All things were made by him, and without him was not anything
made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
And the light shineth in the darkness and the darkness comprehended it
not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The same came
for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him
might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of
that Light. That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh
into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and
the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him
not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the
sons of God, even to them that believe on his name”.
Now you see the person that is referred to there is the light; and the
light is the same person as we’ve got referred to right at the beginning
as the Word. And if you carry on to verse 14 it says “and the Word was
made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as
of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. John bare
witness of him, and cried saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that
cometh after me is preferred before me; for he was before me”. You see
there is no break in the thought sequence between the Word and Jesus actually
in this world. I mean no break in the thought sequence as to the person
Now, John’s gospel is a very long book in one way. Not long in the terms
of words but long in terms of ideas, and one of the themes of John’s gospel
is to bring out from time to time pointers to the fact that, as he says
in his opening verse, Jesus was God.
Now as I understand it, the way Jesus came was not to get up and say
boldly, “I am God”; but he went about, as it says in another passage “doing
good, and healing all those that were oppressed of the devil for God was
with him”. If you read the gospels (I think this is true of all four gospels)
what you find is a man comes in and immediately the question arises, ‘Who
is he?’ ‘Who is this man?’ And from time to time you are given hints or
pointers as to who he really was. For example, if we go to Mark’s gospel
(because, although I’ve spoken much about John, this point we’re making
is spread out through the whole of Scripture) – we go to the second chapter
of Mark, and we find that Jesus had been defending his disciples against
the Pharisees, who were insisting upon the detailed observance of the
Sabbath law in accordance with their prescribed rules. The disciples had
been eating ears of corn on the Sabbath day which they had plucked from
a ripe corn field. Jesus says in verse 27, “the Sabbath was made for man
and not man for the Sabbath. Therefore the Son of Man is Lord also of
the Sabbath”. The title ‘Son of Man’ goes in parallel, so to speak, with
the title ‘Son of God’. It is used some eighty times or so in the gospels
always, or most always, from the mouth of Jesus himself. Therefore, when
he says “the Son of Man” he is referring to himself. “The Son of Man is
Lord also of the Sabbath”. The word ‘Lord’ in basic meaning means ‘a person
who has power over something or someone’. Who can have power over the
Sabbath which God created, except God?
I just make that as one witness from another part of Scripture. I said
time is short and therefore I will pass over the other passages that might
be referred to in John’s gospel and take you right to the end, or rather,
to the end of chapter 20. Chapter 21 forms a kind of supplement, or appendix,
or epilogue, to John’s gospel and the main narrative ends with chapter
20. Chapter 20 tells us how Jesus rose from the dead. It also tells us
that there was some difficulty among his disciples in believing this,
in particular with Thomas. Thomas, one might say, was a typical twentieth
century man – wouldn’t believe anything he couldn’t see. But Jesus appeared
to his disciples, first when Thomas wasn’t there, which aroused his unbelief,
and secondly when Thomas was there. And in verse 27 it says, “then saith
he (this is, Jesus) to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my
hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side and be not
faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord
and my God”. Now if Jesus had not been God, he would have had to have
immediately refuted that.
I can draw your attention for example, to illustrate this point, to Acts
14. Paul and Barnabas had been preaching in Lystra which is in what we
now call Turkey. They had healed a man that had been a cripple and when
the people saw it, they said (verse 11 of chapter 14) “The gods are come
down to us in the likeness of men. And they called Barnabas, Jupiter;
and Paul, Mercurius; because he was the chief speaker”. And so they attempted
to offer sacrifices to Paul and Barnabas. And immediately it says, verse
14, when Barnabas and Paul heard of (it) “they rent their clothes, and
ran in among the people, crying out, And saying, Sirs, why do ye do these
things? We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you
the ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made
heaven and earth, and the sea and all things that are therein”: and so
on. And it says, verse 18 “And with these sayings scarce restrained they
the people that they had not done sacrifice unto them”.
Again in Acts 10 we find Peter comes to Cornelius. Cornelius, a Roman
centurion, had sent messengers to Peter asking him to come and preach
the gospel to him. When he came it says, verse 25, “and as Peter was coming
in, Cornelius met him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped him.
But Peter took him up, saying, Stand up; I myself also and a man”.
Again, you go to Revelation. In chapter 1, John falls down at the feet
of Jesus appearing in magnificent form as “one like unto the Son of Man”.
There is no rejection of that.
Go to the end of the Book and you find chapter 22 and verse 8 “And I
John saw these things and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I
fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these
things. Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellow
servant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the
sayings of this book: worship God”.
You see, any other being accepting worship, save God, is gravely sinning
because as the Lord himself said when he was tempted by the devil, to
worship the devil, “thou shalt worship the Lord thy God and him alone
shalt thou serve”. And yet, you see, Jesus accepted worship.
Again, it says in the end of Luke, after Jesus was parted from them and
carried up into heaven, “they worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem
with great joy”.
Indeed, there are many passages in Scripture where Jesus is worshipped.
For example, at the end of the second epistle to Timothy, we find, chapter
4 verse 18, “And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will
preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever”.
Again at the end of the second epistle of Peter, he exhorts his hearers
to “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus
Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen”.
Go to Revelation 1:6 (or rather verse 5) “And from Jesus Christ, who
is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince
of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us and washed us from our
sins in his own blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and
his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen”.
Go to chapter 5 verse 9. This is the elders exclaiming, “And they sung
a new song saying, Thou are worthy to take the book and to open the seals
thereof: for thou wast slain and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood
out of every kindred, and tongue and people, and nation” – addressed,
you see, to Jesus.
Again, you get in verse 13 Jesus linked with God in worship “Blessing
and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne,
and unto the Lamb for ever and ever”.
Jesus the Lamb of God is worshipped with God. He is God.
Now on the question of the Trinity, I will remind you of one thing (because
my time is almost elapsed) and that is at the end of Matthew’s gospel
the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are joined together in one single
name. The final commission of Jesus to his disciples, chapter 28 verse
19, is “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the
name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost”. One name,
three persons, one God.
That, I think, is all I need to tell you for the moment. I hope to answer
some of Mr. Heaster’s points in my second speech.
This is Bible evidence for the Trinity.