The Baptist Press reports that Bishop T. D. Jakes says he now embraces the doctrine of the Trinity. This revelation came last week at the second annual Elephant Room, an event involving Christians from different backgrounds. For those of you that did not know, Bishop Jakes came up in the Oneness Pentecostal Church. Members of this movement deny the Trinity. They don’t believe God is three distinct persons but one.
I knew as much as 20 years ago that Bishop Jakes embraced the doctrine of Oneness, but I was not aware until now that he still held on to that teaching. And since he is such a prominent leader in the Christian community and has embraced the errant doctrine of Oneness so long, it is highly probable that some of you who read this post may be unclear on the truth of this matter.
First of all, the word Trinity is not found in the Bible. But by that term we mean there is one God but that He manifests Himself in three distinct persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. As evidence, consider this passage: “And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 1:16-17).
From this passage, we see all three persons of the Godhead involved—the Son being baptized, the Holy Spirit descending upon Him, and the Father speaking from heaven. Those who embrace Oneness believe in the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, but they do not believe the three are distinct persons as the passage above indicates.
Moreover, in a number of places, the Bible teaches that in the person of Jesus, “God was manifested in the flesh” (see 1 Timothy 3:16). “In Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Colossians 2:9).
I am glad the Bishop Jakes now embraces the doctrine of the Trinity. What amazes me is that the doctrine of the Trinity is not an advanced Christian doctrine but a fundamental Christian doctrine. For any of us, no matter what religious background we are from and no matter how long we have believed what we have, when we study the Bible and God opens our eyes to the truth, we must be willing to abandon error and embrace the truth.
Copyright ©2012 by Frank King. All rights reserved.