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Re: Modalism

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  • William Kilgore
    Kerry, I consider Boyd s book the best on the specific subject, but there is a brief treatment that is excellent also. It s called Oneness Pentecostalism -
    Message 1 of 9 , Oct 1, 1998
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      Kerry,

      I consider Boyd's book the best on the specific subject, but there is a
      brief treatment that is excellent also. It's called "'Oneness
      Pentecostalism' - An Evaluation" and is written by my friend Mark
      McNeil. Mark graduated magna cum laude from the local Texas Bible
      College (considered a prestigious UPC college), but ended up rejecting
      "oneness" for orthodoxy. You can order the book for $3.00 from PILGRIM
      PUBLICATIONS -- give them a call at 713-477-2329. Ask for MIKE and tell
      him Bill Kilgore sent you, if you decide to order. They also have some
      articles on "oneness" I believe.

      Incidentally, Beisner's book is far better than Morey's. Also, I suggest
      Philip Hughes' THE TRUE IMAGE and/or Kelly's EARLY CHRISTIAN DOCTRINES
      for excellent treatments on early modalist teachings in the early
      Church.

      William Kilgore
    • JD
      I ordered the booklet. Thanks for the info. Got the book too (only $13). Website: www.pilgrim.org/ also http://www.spurgeon.org/ - just joined this list, so
      Message 2 of 9 , Oct 2, 1998
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        I ordered the booklet. Thanks for the info. Got the book too (only $13).
        Website: www.pilgrim.org/
        also http://www.spurgeon.org/ - just joined this list, so ya'll probably
        already know this, smile.

        New to this topic as well, the Trinitarian argument that caught my attention
        shows the incidents in the Bible where we see God revealed in more than one
        person at the same time. Like when Jesus was being baptized by John the
        Baptist. Here we see Jesus, we see the Holy Spirit (in the form of dove),
        and we hear the Father's voice. The other striking example to me is when
        Jesus prays in the Bible. Is He praying to Himself? "Father, take this cup
        from me." "Father, into my hand I commit my Spirit."

        I will hopefully learn more once receiving these documents in the mail.
        Started a little filing system (folders on Trinity, Eternal Security,
        Heaven, Hell, etc.). Please pray that God will help me with my time
        management, that I can be more productive in my reading. At times after
        working a full-time job, I come home and waste time, when I could be
        studying.


        -----Original Message-----
        From: William Kilgore <thinkman@...>
        To: apologetics@onelist.com <apologetics@onelist.com>
        Date: Thursday, October 01, 1998 9:20 AM
        Subject: [apologetics] Re: Modalism


        >From: William Kilgore <thinkman@...>
        >
        >Kerry,
        >
        >I consider Boyd's book the best on the specific subject, but there is a
        >brief treatment that is excellent also. It's called "'Oneness
        >Pentecostalism' - An Evaluation" and is written by my friend Mark
        >McNeil. Mark graduated magna cum laude from the local Texas Bible
        >College (considered a prestigious UPC college), but ended up rejecting
        >"oneness" for orthodoxy. You can order the book for $3.00 from PILGRIM
        >PUBLICATIONS -- give them a call at 713-477-2329. Ask for MIKE and tell
        >him Bill Kilgore sent you, if you decide to order. They also have some
        >articles on "oneness" I believe.
        >
        >Incidentally, Beisner's book is far better than Morey's. Also, I suggest
        >Philip Hughes' THE TRUE IMAGE and/or Kelly's EARLY CHRISTIAN DOCTRINES
        >for excellent treatments on early modalist teachings in the early
        >Church.
        >
        >William Kilgore
        >
        >
        >
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        >
      • William Kilgore
        J.D., Let me know what you think about those materials after you ve read them. God Bless, William Kilgore
        Message 3 of 9 , Oct 2, 1998
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          J.D.,

          Let me know what you think about those materials after you've read them.

          God Bless,

          William Kilgore
        • Kerry Gilliard - International Webmaster
          Hey Derrick, -- To say that loving the person in the UPC would be somewhat redundant but -- nevertheless, extremely important. Excellent point. I ve been
          Message 4 of 9 , Oct 3, 1998
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            Hey Derrick,

            -->To say that loving the person in the UPC would be somewhat redundant but
            -->nevertheless, extremely important.

            Excellent point. I've been guilty of getting to 'wrapped up' in 'the
            argument' in times past and usually try to approach a discussion softly (but
            still with the truth- I'm an extremely BLUNT person most of the times and
            don't like to tapdance around the issue). The one thing that I usually find
            is a knee-jerk reaction from most people who share divergent views on the
            'essentials' of the Christian faith that gets them running off on a tangent,
            quoting tons of scripture (primarily an emotional reaction). Sometimes it's
            hard to keep 'focused' during all of this because A. they're usually making
            all types of fallacies in their speech and you want to address some of the
            major ones which are obviously the cause of their misunderstanding on an
            isue and B. you don't want to feel like you're getting 'pummelled with
            scripture'. All things can be approached in love, but at the same time we
            need to stay aware of 'where we are' in the argument so we dont' lose focus
            on THE SOUL (and not necessarily on proving our point, although the two are
            related).

            --> I know one of the verses they use a lot is Acts 2:38. I got an aticle
            -->from Christian Research Institute that helped lay out a few points. I
            -->will have to look for it. They do love the Lord and we must be able to
            -->share openly and directly with them with love and sensitivity as the
            -->Holy Spirit leads.

            I can honestly say that every UPC person I've met (there have been a few
            dozen) has shown a general love for the Lord which would shame most
            'orthodox' Christians that I know. Re-analyzing that though, I sometimes
            wonder if that 'love' they demonstrate is genuine love for the Lord because
            of what He has done or due to the legalistic lifestyle that they are forced
            into. Thoughts anyone?

            Harold O.J. Brown makes a good observation near the end of his chapter on
            modalism/sabellianism in his book 'Heresies' - he says that there are a
            great number of differences between believers of that time period and those
            who willfully reject the doctrine of the Trinity today- those in the early
            church were geniuinely trying to understand the doctrine of the incarnation
            while most of those who reject the trinity today do so because they simply
            dont' want to believe.

            --> I have learned to separate the person as an individual and the beliefs
            -->of the church (any church for that matter) and deal with them as an
            -->individual.

            Very true indeed. I remember a few years ago talking with an girl at my
            school who was (at the time) a Jehovah's Witness. Strangely enough though,
            she believed in a literal, fire and brimstone hell, so even though their
            organization has a facade of 'unity' on the surface doctrinally, just like
            everyone else, they have a diversity of beliefs from individual to
            individual (even if they never make their beliefs public for fear of
            ostracization from the rest of the group). I remember she and I had a nice
            3 hour talk in the library, although she got kinda upset that I said the
            Watchtower Societies leaders were false prophets (we got into the 1914,
            1915, 1918, 1919, 1925, 1929, etc.. thing ). Today, praise God, she's
            saved. She passed word through a friend that part of the thing that helped
            her to see the truth was the convo we had. Our efforts are never in vain,
            even when we thing we've done a 'horrible' job, just be open, ready and
            equipped to share the truth in love.

            Kerry
          • William Kilgore
            Kerry, I would tend to disagree with the idea that there is any difference in the early believers struggling to understand & modern believers who just
            Message 5 of 9 , Oct 4, 1998
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              Kerry,

              I would tend to disagree with the idea that there is any "difference" in
              the early believers "struggling to understand" & modern believers who
              "just don't believe the Trinity." Yesterday's modalists were just as
              commited (more so) than today's UPC -- further, such actually had a
              BETTER understanding of what they were really teaching than the modern
              UPC adherent.

              The modern UPC is "anti-trinitarian" only because they first erected a
              false construct of 'logic' : Matt. 28:18 + Acts 2:38 = the "name" of
              "Father, Son, AND Holy Spirit" must be "Jesus". While modern UPC leaders
              (like David Bernard) have of course developed this into full-blown
              Modalistic Monarchianism, the average layperson in the UPC is far
              different.

              Basically, the average UPC member is taught from day 1 that trinitarians
              are TRITHEISTS. The sad thing is that MANY ARE! Look at men like the
              late Finis J. Dake, or the Charismatics like Copeland. These are
              significant examples because many UPC "converts" come from AofG &
              Charismatic ranks, where these teachers are popular.

              Step 2 involves the "logical" construct referred to above : the "Matt.
              28:18 + Acts 2:38" equation.

              At this point, the UPC member is CONVINCED - period. Any "deeper"
              modalist material, such as Bernard's ONENESS OF GOD, simply REINFORCES
              what they ALREADY BELIEVE. When the average UPC member picks up THE
              ONENESS OF GOD, they already have instilled the two faulty
              presuppositions above. Every other scripture is going to be "filtered"
              through that grid.

              Thus, in my opinion, it is essential to FIRST "play Samson" to those two
              "pillars" of modern "oneness" teaching : (1) trinitarianism, when
              properly understood after orthodoxy, is NOT tritheism; and (2) Matt.
              28:18 and Acts 2:38 do NOT form an iron-clad equation that requires a
              modalist understanding.

              >From here, I think one of the main points against "oneness" teaching is
              the DOCETISM implicit in the teaching. The trinitarian Jesus, again
              rightly understood, is a REAL man who was really born, lived, died --
              FOR REAL! Of course, this is a great mystery (1 Tim. 3:16). UPC
              teachers, however, present us with a Jesus who was "acting" - that is,
              simply "putting on a different mask for the next act," so to speak. When
              one gets deep into a theological matter like the atonement - it will be
              discovered that "oneness" teachers are logically compelled to water-down
              Jesus' death in the extreme. Jesus' REAL humanity is effectively DENIED
              - the ancient heresy of DOCETISM.

              In Christ,

              William Kilgore
            • Derrick Bright
              Hey Kerry, I did not want in any way to seem like I would compromise the truth for the sake of love and unity . I believe to do so would be a great
              Message 6 of 9 , Oct 5, 1998
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                Hey Kerry, I did not want in any way to seem like I would compromise
                the truth for the sake of "love" and "unity". I believe to do so would
                be a great mistake.

                A. they're usually making
                >all types of fallacies in their speech and you want to address some of
                the
                >major ones which are obviously the cause of their misunderstanding on
                an
                >isue and B. you don't want to feel like you're getting 'pummelled with
                >scripture'.
                Very true. I am not one who is good at a face to face "arguement" with
                some just because that is the way my personality is. I find it real
                helpful to write down some of the quotes and/or scripture reference of
                there arguement and address them at a later time (especially if they are
                an acquaintance and I will more than likely converse again with them).
                Sometimes this cannot be done. "The I'll get back to you later" thing.

                Kerry, I don't remember if you said you were talking with someone
                yourself or if you were just doing research.

                To any and everyone, what do you all know about the ICC --International
                Church of Christ. My understanding is that they are cultic in the way
                they do certain things, but are they necesarily a cult?

                Derrick
              • Derrick Bright
                William, Could you help me with a simple definition of 1.modalism: 2.docetism: Thanks.. Derrick
                Message 7 of 9 , Oct 5, 1998
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                  William,
                  Could you help me with a simple definition of
                  1.modalism:
                  2.docetism:
                  Thanks..
                  Derrick
                • William Kilgore
                  Derrick, YOU ASK: To any and everyone, what do you all know about the ICC --International Church of Christ. My understanding is that they are cultic in the
                  Message 8 of 9 , Oct 5, 1998
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                    Derrick,

                    YOU ASK: "To any and everyone, what do you all know about the ICC
                    --International Church of Christ. My understanding is that they are
                    cultic in the way they do certain things, but are they necesarily a
                    cult?"

                    I checked with a friend who is an "expert" on the CofC (he has written
                    several books on the movement). He affirmed what I thought: the ICofC is
                    the new name for the BOSTON CofC. And yes, this group is cultic.

                    William Kilgore
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