The Evangelical Universalist Forum

Are You a Unitrinian?

This post has arisen out of a dream I had last night. In the dream, I noticed that someone had written “Unutrinian” While yet dreaming, I said to myself, "That should be spelled “Unitrinian.” Then I awoke, and thought, “Just what is a Unitrinian, anyway?” I’ve never heard of it.

I speculated that it might be a good label for a Modalist—one who believes God is one Person who expresses Himself in three modes, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. However, most modern Modalists don’t accept the title “Modalist.” They prefer to call their theology “Oneness theology.”

Today I looked up the word “Unitrinian” on the internet. All I could find is that the “Unitrinian School of Personal Harmonizing” was founded by Mary King at Moonshine, Twilight Park, in the Catskills.
Nearly all the posts were about purchasing addresses to the graduating school of the “Unitrinian School of Personal Harmonizing”, one source of which was asking $38.91 for such purchase.

But why would anyone purchase an address to the graduating school when you cannot find out anything about the school?

There was a reference on one of the sites to “Unitrinian theology.” So I thought, “Now I’m getting somewhere!” So I googled “Unitrinian theology” but got nowhere. Google thought I mean “Unitarian theology.”

If anyone can discover any more information about this topic, I would be greatly pleased if you would share it.

Wouldn’t a Unitrinian be a believer in 1 Trinity? Just a wild guess…

Hiya Paidion, can you please tell us more details about your dream? In your dream you saw the word ‘unutrinian’ being written, and you immediately thought that it was wrong. In your dream, who was writing it? What was the context? If there was no other information in the dream, I would guess that it is somehow connected with a more accurate (or inaccurate) understanding of the trinity.

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Great to have you on board, Jeannie. Welcome.

That seems a reasonable guess based on the etymology of the word. But why would anyone identify himself as a believer in 1 Trinity? Is there anyone who believes in 2 Trinities?

Haha - beats me. I do believe that for anything at all, there is someone who believes it, out there somewhere.

There was no context. I don’t know who wrote it. I just saw that the word had been written that way.

Why would you guess this? What might that understanding be?

And yes, welcome to the forum, Jeannie!

I do know that there are ‘Quaternians’, however.
Quaternian argument

If the dream contained no other details, then I think its meaning is fairly self-explanatory. The doctrine of the trinity is a logic puzzle for all humans, yet we have biblical grounds for accepting it. Your dream of a written word (Word?) spelt wrongly indicates that you already sense something is not quite right in a trinitarian teaching you have been contemplating. Just my opinion…

But it wasn’t “trinitarian” that was spelled wrongly; it was “unitrinian” that was spelled wrongly.
Also, I haven’t been contemplating any trinitarian teaching. I do not believe that God is a trinity.
Jesus called His Father “the only true God.” Thus I believe in one true God and His divine Son.

Trinitarian views were almost unknown until the fourth century.

uni = 1 , tri = 3 , nian = belonging to or relating to
You may want to look again at Arianism - v - Trinitarian beliefs, and consider which one is more biblical.

The second-century church had no concept of a “Trinity.” The view didn’t catch on in mainstream Christianity until the 4th century.

The early Christian, Justin Martyr (A.D. 110-165) explained to a group of Jewish people who were asking him about Christianity, that the Son of God was begotten by God as the first of His acts. Justin compared this begetting to lighting a small fire from a large one. Though the small fire is of the same essence as the large one, it is nonetheless a separate fire.

Very interesting so Don do you believe, did St Patrick gravitate to a trinitarian belief in Ireland?

“The Jews, accordingly, being throughout of opinion that it was the Father of the universe who spake to Moses, though He who spake to him was indeed the Son of God, who is called both Angel and Apostle, are justly charged, both by the Spirit of prophecy and by Christ Himself, with knowing neither the Father nor the Son. For they who affirm that the Son is the Father, [against modalism] are proved neither to have become acquainted with the Father, nor to know that the Father of the universe has a Son; who also, being the first-begotten Word of God, is even God.”

Justin Martyr, First Apology, 63

For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,
1 Tim 2.5

Have you quoted that, Jeannie, in an attempt to show that Justin believed in a Trinity?

The apostle John in his gospel 1:1 said the Logos (Christ) was with God and the Logos was God. But the word “God” is used in two different ways in that passage. In the first clause , “The Logos was with God” the word “θεος” in Greek (theos) is prefixed with the article. Whenever this is done with no other modifiers, the reference is to the “one God” as in the verse that Dave provided. Jesus Himself addressed His Father as “the only true God” (John 17:3).

But in the second clause “The Logos was God” there is no modifier before “θεος” and “θεος” comes before the verb like this, “God was the Logos.” That indicates that “θεος” is a quality of Christ.

The same word order in Greek is used in “God is love.” Love is a quality of God and is placed before the verb like this “God love is.”

Again the same word order in “Your word is truth” like this “Your word truth is.”

Conclusion “God” or “Divinity” is a quality of the Son. Because the Father who begat Him is divine, therefore the Son is divine, just as the father begat you is human, so you are human. But Jesus is the only-begotten Son of God. So He is the only divine Person other than the Father.

This is what Justin meant when he said that the Son “is even God.” When you read the writings of Justin fully, it is clear that he didn’t believe in a Trinity.

Hiya Paidion, you have a very interesting view, but we shall need to agree to disagree. I am fully persuaded that we worship a triune God. Father is God, Son is God and Holy Spirit is God, yet not 3 gods, but 1 God. Yes, my one God is 3 persons. I’m also certain that our understanding of who God is will become perfect in the hereafter, as will all other biblical interpretations.

Unless ‘they’ each know everything, and each is everywhere, and share every thought at the same time exactly, then they are not equal. And if they are the same - why 3? If the Father alone is omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, all-wise etc - what do the other 2 have to do with it? That’s just the tip of the iceberg of my difficulties, but you are correct - we will know at some point.

Okay, but is the God to which the New Testament refers, one God in 3 persons? If it were wouldn’t you expect at least one reference to the word “God” in the New Testament to denote a Trinity? But no, not even one. Almost every occurrence of the word “God” refers to the Father alone. And a few refer to the Son where “God” is used in the sense of being divine—the divine Son of the “one true God” (as Jesus called His Father).

Yes sir Christ was the man. The difference is if you believe that Jesus was ‘the man’ in everything or if Jesus was ‘the man’ only if you believed in him and did some kind of crazy belief extreme, this is the real question…