Genesis 1:26 God said “Let us make”

Amazingly when some Bible readers arrive at Genesis 1:26 and they read that God said “Let us make…”, they leap to the conclusion that God is more than one Person.
There is no logical reason for this. Scripture describes God as “I”, “He,” “Him,” “Me” thousands of times.

Suddenly lots of readers do seem to forget that the person speaking is the very highest person in the world. all important people when they speak to the general public or address their audience will use the pluralis majestatis or Royal We. As the Most High, God speaking to man or letting His words written down by His writers shall let it those Words been notated in the plural form.

Others like to think that when on a very rare occasion God says, “Let us…” it means that God, who is one person, involves others with Him. How is it that Bible readers imagine “Let us…” to mean “Let us Three…” The verse says nothing about three members of a Godhead. There are theologians you take it that there where other celestial beings like angels with God and that He spoke to them and about them. As such we do find a not in the NIV Study Bible (on Genensis 1:26) that points out that God involved His angels in some way with creation. Angels, when they appear, look like men (Genesis 18:2). Both man and angels bear a resemblance to God Himself. From the Word Bible Commentary (“From a team of international scholars, a showcase of the best in evangelical scholarship”):

“When angels appear in the OT they are frequently described as men (Gen. 18:2). And in fact the use of the singular verb in v. 27 does in fact suggest that God worked alone in the creation of mankind. ‘Let us create man’ should therefore be regarded as a divine announcement to the heavenly [angelic] court, drawing the angelic host’s attention to the master stroke of creation, man. As Job 38:4, 7 puts it: ‘When I laid the foundation of the earth all the Sons of God shouted for joy’ (cp. Luke 2:13-14).”

The idea that Genesis 1:26 even hints at the Trinity is false. The Word Bible Commentary states correctly,

“It is now universally admitted that the use of the plural in Gen. 1:26 did not mean to the author that [God was more than one Person.]”

Real truth-seekers will make an effort not to start their investigation with the assumption that the Trinity is a true biblical teaching. They will begin with an open mind and look for clear evidence. Is there such evidence in the Old Testament?

Many have abandoned Genesis 1:26 as any indication of plurality in God. The NIV study note, widely available, provides the public with the needed information pointing out with many commentaries that God was addressing His attendant council of angels. There is no shred of proof for the Trinity in Genesis 1:26.

Nor is there any evidence for the Trinity in the word “one” in the famous Jewish and Christian creed (Deuteronomy 6:4, cited by Jesus as a Christian in Mark 12:28ff.). That most basic creed says:

“Hear, O Israel, the Lord your God is one Lord.”

A very misleading and unfair argument has gained wide circulation to the effect that the word “one” really means a “compound one.” Of course, even if it did, that verse tells us nothing about God being three. But “one” means “one.” “One,” of course, can modify a collective noun, like “bunch” or “herd.” But it is the word “herd” or “bunch” which conveys the idea of plurality, not the word “one.” This compound-unity argument is not used by scholars of the Hebrew language. One has only to consult a lexicon of Hebrew to see that nothing compound is implied in “one.”

In a long book on the Trinity (The Trinity, Evidence and Issues), Robert Morey claims that the Hebrew word “one” (echad) really means “more than one”! He states without evidence from a lexicon that “one” means “compound oneness.” Morey includes a footnote to p. 25 of the standard Lexicon of Biblical Hebrew for support. But the page he appeals to contains not a word of support for his theory that “one” really means “compound unity.” The lexicons rightly define “one” as the cardinal number “one.” Echad is the word for “one” in counting. Imagine the chaos of communication if “one” really means more than one. Ecclesiastes 4:9 speaks of two being better than one (echad). The use of “one” in the sentence “The two shall become one flesh” does not mean that “one” is really plural. It means that two human beings in marriage become one (not two) things. The idea of plurality is not found in the word “one” at all. It is found in the context: male and female human persons.

The lexicons of Hebrew tell us correctly that “one” means “one single.” Echad is used about 770 times and there is never any doubt that it means “one,” not two or more.

In the central creed of Israel and of Jesus (Deuteronomy 6:4; Mark 12:28ff.) the LORD is described as “one Lord,” i.e. “one single Lord.” One single Lord means one Person, not three.

English: Isaac Newton Dansk: Sir Isaac Newton ...
Isaac Newton (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Opposition to the Trinity is not confined to so-called “cults.” That is a public myth. How many know what Sir Isaac Newton, John Locke and John Milton have in common? They are recognized as among the most intelligent Bible students of the seventeenth century. All objected strongly to the doctrine of the Trinity. These men cannot just be dismissed as ill-educated or prejudiced. They had very good reasons for what they believed and defended in writing. All three were vigorous anti-Trinitarians. So also was Thomas Jefferson, who examined the Trinitarian question carefully in the light of the Bible. How many know that Harvard University at one time expressed non-Trinitarian views? Many contemporary biblical scholars recognize that the Trinity is a post-biblical development.

Miguel Servet, (Villanueva de Sigena 1511- Gen...
Miguel Servet, (Villanueva de Sigena 1511- Genevra 1553) Spanish scientist and theologist of the Renaissance. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of the cruelest episodes in church history occurred when the reformer Calvin used the strong arm of the Catholic Church to burn at the stake a brilliant linguist, physician, geographer and Bible expert, Michael Servetus. The burning of others over an issue of doctrine is absolutely forbidden by the Bible and may cause some wonder about the spirit which drives such persecuting zeal over the definition of who God is. (For a recent fine account of this horrible cruelty in support of the Trinitarian cause, see Marian Hillar, The Case of Michael Servetus: The Turning Point in the Struggle for Freedom of Conscience, Edwin Mellen Press, 1997).

– You may find: Does everyone believe in the Trinity by Anthony Buzzard

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Please do find to read:

  1. Pluralis Majestatis in the Holy Scriptures
  2. The very very beginning 1 Creating Gods
  3. The Trinity – The truth (Video)
  4. God of gods
  5. Only One God
  6. God is one
  7. Sayings around God
  8. Attributes to God
  9. Reasons that Jesus was not God
  10. Our relationship with God, Jesus and eachother

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  • For once, AmChurchSpeak makes an important point: Lent is a journey to Calvary… (denvercatholic.org)
    For two weeks, the Letter to the Hebrews draws on images from the Old Testament to introduce us to that “great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God:” a mediator between God and humanity who “has been tempted as we are” and with whom we can “with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” [Heb 4: 14-16]. Here, the biblical author writes, we find that “great cloud of witnesses” in whose company we are enabled to “run with perseverance the race that is set before us” [Heb 12: 1] Here is “Mt. Zion … the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem” to which we are brought through the mediation of Jesus, and where we join “innumerable angels in festive gathering” [Heb 12: 22].
  • Episode 63: Ezra and the Compilation of the Pentateuch (notevenpast.org)
    The authorship of the first five books of the Hebrew Bible or the Old Testament–known as the Torah or the Pentateuch–has been traditionally attributed to Moses. This raised some questions, however: would the most humble of men really describe himself as such?
  • A Stack of Bibles! (openlettersmonthly.com)
    Sometimes, when it comes to propitiating the Deity, circumstances warrant going right to the top – and with poor wretched Boston staring wide-eyed at the latest ferocious oncoming “monster storm,” today seemed like one of those times. So with fear and trembling, I crept to my bookshelves and assembled the proverbial stack of Bibles on the altar … er, that is, the couch, in the silvery light of an afternoon rapidly being crumpled under the building weight of the “snow hurricane” bearing down from the upper Midwest. There in those pages I sought to know afresh the mind of a Deity who suddenly doesn’t like navigable sidewalks, pretty sunsets, or the MBTA.
  • A Local Flood Interpretation of Genesis 7 (aviewfromtheright.com)
    First, regarding mankind, some who hold to (or at least entertain the idea of) a local Flood have theorized that the story deals only with a subset of the planet’s population at the time, who were essentially wiped out by a regional flood, but the rest of humanity was not directly affected. However, I agree with RTB’s position that the Genesis text gives clues indicating that humanity at the time was geographically limited, most likely to what we now call the Persian Gulf, Mesopotamia, and the Arabian Peninsula. So, a “local flood” only needed to be sufficiently large to reach all of mankind in this region, as well as the land and animals most likely to have been affected by their sin. (This goes to the subject of God’s judgment and how He handles it in Scripture, which is outside the purview of this article.) In other words, the Flood was geographically limited but anthropologically universal.
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