A statement of faith modalists will love
This is a modalist statement of faith so long as what is meant by “persons” is anything less than “beings”. And in the case of the vast majority of Trinitarian teachers, this is indeed the case.
Zyxl — EditedEric Seelye The creed requires you to say there is only one eternal thing, right? That means you can't say there are three eternal persons. The creed denies that there are three eternal things. So if you want to affirm that there are three eternal persons you have to deny that the persons are distinct or deny that they are really things that exist and are rather just three names or modes of one thing. Either way, you end up with modalism. The Bible never presents any contradictions, nor is there such a thing as an objective apparent contradiction, since ‘apparent’ means subjective. Thus there is nothing about God which we can objectively say is paradoxical or apparently contradictory. Everything which is true makes sense and is logical, otherwise it would be false (1 Tim 6:20). If something appears paradoxical that's either because you are confused or it really is a contradiction. Notice I never actually claimed the three-in-one doctrine is contradictory. It certainly can be, and I used to have contradictory beliefs of that kind. However, there are many different theories about how this three-in-one idea works, and I think some of them are self-consistent. If you think God is paradoxical then I suggest you study further and try to resolve the paradox rather than accepting it like a man who is happy believing that 0 = 1. Scripture says people are supposed to search for God and know Him, and that even the deep things about God are understandable to those God wants to reveal them (1 Cor 2:10-16). Therefore the nature of God is logical and understandable, although He may still choose not reveal it. But more to the point than squabbling about mysteries and paradoxes is to go to scripture and find out what it says. I find it says there is only one God, the Father (1 Cor 8:6) and that Jesus is His Son. Jesus and the Holy Spirit are also disqualified from being the most high God in many different ways, some of which I mentioned in my first response. I don't find God ever treated as a plurality; He is always treated with singular pronouns and verbs, whereas Jesus and the Father together are referred to in the plural (John 14:23, 10:30). Jesus and the Father are compared to two men (John 8:17-18) and to a human father and son (Matt 21:37), which indicates they are not the same being any more than two men are the same being. Texts which appear to refer to Jesus as God need not be taken as referring to Him as the most high God, and John 1, John 10, and Heb 1 (as well as the OT) give us good precedent for calling Jesus a God who is not the most high God. Additionally, we should understand that Jesus is often referred to as though He were the Father (even though we both know He is not) because He was sent by the Father on the Father's behalf and with the Father's words and authority. We both know Jesus was not claiming to be the Father when He said “He who has seen Me has seen the Father”. There are many other examples of this kind of representation in the OT and NT.
- Zyxl, you are mistaken. The creed says, " The Father eternal, the Son eternal, and the Holy Spirit eternal. And yet they are not three eternals but one eternal." So, there are three eternal Persons in the one eternal God, according to the creed. It seems clear to me, Zyxl, that you and I will never agree on the Triune nature of God, and that further discussion is unlikely to be fruitful. So, I bid you to go in peace.