Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Ephesians 4:5 - One Lord

Ephesians 4:4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as you also were called in one hope of your calling;
Ephesians 4:5 one Lord (Greek, Kurios), one faith, one baptism,
Ephesians 4:6 one God and Father of all, who is over all, and through all, and in us all.

Sometimes trinitarians (and others) point to the above scriptures as proof that God is three persons, or that Jesus is Jehovah (Yahweh). We are not sure exactly what such see in the above verses that would mean that Jesus is Jehovah, but evidently one of the trinitarian thoughts is that since all three are mentioned, then their trinity dogma is being referenced. While Paul does speak of "one spirit" and "one Lord" and "one God", he does not say that all three are "one God", or that these are persons of "one God". Additionally, Paul wrote of "one body", "one faith", "one hope." It would seem that if Paul is declaring persons of God in these verses, then the "one body" would be another person of God, and the "one faith" would be another person of God, and the "one hope" would be another person of God. However, since all will agree that the "one body", "one faith", "one hope" spoken of are not "persons" of God, then following through, neither is the "one spirit" nor the "one Lord" that is spoken of.

Oneness believers also sometimes reference this, and, again, we have not seen their reasoning on this; evidently it is with a similar thought in their effort to prove that Jesus is his God and Father; and yet, the same truth prevails that if the "one Lord" is also the "one God", then also the "one body", the "one faith", and the "one hope", should all be viewed as the "one God", which would mean that the entire church would be included in the "one God". In reality, what Paul has stated shows a distinction between the "one body", the "one spirit", the "one Lord", and the "one God".

It may be that some may refer to Ephesians 4:5 in reference to the "one Lord" and cross-reference this with Deuteronomy 6:4, and claim that Jesus is being presented as the 'one Lord' that is spoken of in Deuteronomy 6:4, where the King James Version reads like this: "Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD." In Deuteronomy 6:4, the KJV, as well as many other translations, have substituted "LORD" for the holy name. This should not be done, and to those ignorant of the truth about the holy name, the idea that Paul, in Ephesians 4:5, was speaking of the "one LORD" of Deuteronomy 6:4 might appear to be logical due to the substitution of "the LORD" for God's Holy Name. Some will claim that the Greek word "kurios", often rendered "the Lord" in the New Testament, means "Jehovah", since in the extant Greek NT manuscripts we find that kurios is often substituted for the divine name. The argument would make it seem that every time the Greek word "kurios" appears in the New Testament, it is a reference to the holy name. Such is sophistry, however, for kurios is used of others than Jehovah in the NT, as well as in other Greek writings. Additionally, in the New Testament, the Greek word "Kurios" is also used to translate forms of the Hebrew word "adon". The word "kurios" does not mean "Jehovah", any more than the Hebrew words for "Lord", such as "adon" or "adonai", mean "Jehovah". Paul is not speaking of the "one Jehovah" of Deuteronomy 8:6, when he speaks of "one Lord" in Ephesians 4:5.
Some may present the argument that Jehovah is referred to as “Lord” many times in the Hebrew scriptures, such as Genesis 15:2,8, Exodus 4:10; 5:22; 15:17; 23:17; 24:17; Deuteronomy 3:24; 9:26; 10:17; Joshua 3:13; 7:7; and many more. Thus, they ask, if Jesus is not Jehovah, how can only Jesus be the “one Lord”, as stated in Ephesians 4:5, if Jehovah is also “Lord”? Actually, as already noted, the Greek word "kurios" is used of others in the New Testament besides Jesus or his God, and even many cases where the word is used of Jesus, the ones addressing Jesus as "kurios" certainly would not have thought that they are speaking to Jehovah. Since the word is used of many others than Jehovah, are we to think that all of these others are also Jehovah because a form of the Greek word "kurios" is used of them? And we should not forget that the Lord Jehovah is the one who made Jesus both Lord and Christ. Thus, in effect, we do have two Lords. Additionally, both Jehovah and Jesus are spoken of as Lord of lords; for them to be Lord over other lords, there have to be others who are "lords" for them to be the overlord.

So why did Paul say that there is only one Lord? We should note that Paul was not speaking of who the true God is in these verses; he was speaking of the unity of the church. The church has "one faith", "one hope", "one spirit", and thus to the church, God has appointed only "one Lord" (Acts 2:36; See also Ezekiel 34:23; John 10:29) through whom all things (1 Corinthians 8:6) are provided from the God and Father of Jesus to the church (as well as the blessings of the age to come), including the existence of the believers as new creatures in Christ. — John 1:17; Romans 3:22; 5:10,21; 2 Corinthians 1:20; 5:17,18; Galatians 4:7; 6:15; Ephesians 1:5; 2:10; Philippians 1:11; Titus 3:6.

It has been claimed that 1 Corinthians 15:47 shows that Jesus has always been lord. Jesus evidently had been "Lord" before he descended; we believe that he was certainly "lord" over the angels who evidently came into existence through Jesus. (Colossians 1:16,17) 1 Corinthians 15:47, however, is not speaking of Jesus as though he was already “lord from heaven” before his human birth. Paul is contrasting the two kinds of bodies in the resurrection, the physical, earthly body, and the spiritual body. Jesus, while in the days of his flesh (Hebrews 5:7), had the glory of a terrestrial body, and he did not possess the glory of a celestial body. Thus, Paul is speaking of Jesus now, who as ascended into heaven, that he is now the Lord from heaven. Jesus, as the “lord from heaven”, is now a life-giving spirit being, having a spiritual body, no longer with a terrestrial body of a human of flesh. Adam was also a life-giver, although due to sin, his offspring became under his condemnation.. -- Romans 5:12-19; 1 Corinthians 15:21,22.

In conclusion, we find nothing in these verses that support the trinitarian dogma, or any other teaching that have us believe that Jesus is Jehovah. Jehovah is the only true God, the "one God" that is spoken of in Ephesians 4:6 and John 17:3.
Objections From Comments
Here I will be bringing the objections presented in comments and either providing a short response, or links to others studies that answer the objection given. For the most part, these will be arranged according the main scripture involved.
Matthew 28:18 - See: Was This God the Son Speaking?

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