The Truth About the Nicene/Athanasian Creed Concept of God
The Unknown God
Paul, in hiding in Athens, was bestirred to the Greeks to teach the gospel with his compatriots. While there among them waiting for his associates to arrive from Berea, he noticed tributes to all of the gods of Olympus.
One god being honored brought with it the folly of the thinking of men. There among the many tributes was one to the unknown god--just in case one was forgotten or not recognized because it was not conjured by men.
When brought before the thinkers and philosophers of the city, Paul admonished them that it was folly for them.
Paul called them to repentance by saying,
For in him [God] we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.
Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent." Acts 17:28-30
Elder Quentin L. Cook
Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Church of Jesus Christ, and of the Quorum of the Twelve spoke of the result of Paul's instruction:
...When the Apostle Paul visited Athens, he tried to teach of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Of this effort we read in Acts, “For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.” When the crowd realized the simple religious nature of Paul’s message, which was not new, they rejected it. Lamentations of Jeremiah: Beware of Bondage
Paul told them that humans are the offspring of God. We are descendants of God through Adam and Eve. We are children of a particular parentage spiritually. If Adam and Eve are created in the image of God, then He must have an image.
Jesus Christ prayed with His disciples near Him a powerful prayer in John 17. The entire chapter is worthy to read and digest because Christ makes it clear God the Father is a distinct individual who sent Jesus from His presence as a savior to the world. He also prays for His apostles to be one with Him as He and the Father are one.
Reading that heartfelt prayer that Jesus prayed for them, it makes reason itself stare to think that He was talking to Himself! Why would He deceive His people by doing that? He did not.
Some people, aspiring to unite the Roman empire about three centuries after Christ, needed to find a way to make God mysterious, obscure or hidden enough so that more people could easily accept Him. Give Him no parts they say. Give Him no passion they added. Make Him a thing that is mysterious and wondrous they preached. What better way to keep the masses together in faith based on ignorance of the thing that they worshiped.
He is too familiar. He is too easy to approach and too defined and personable. The people will not like the familiarity. Make Him unknowable, like the great unknown god in Athens.
All of this is in opposition to what Christ prayed for His disciples. It is in opposition of what Paul taught!
Jeffrey R. Holland
Recently in an address to the members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Jeffrey R. Holland provided perspective on the Nicene creed and its LACK of Biblical origin:
"In the year A.D. 325 the Roman emperor Constantine convened the Council of Nicaea to address—among other things—the growing issue of God’s alleged “trinity in unity.” What emerged from the heated contentions of churchmen, philosophers, and ecclesiastical dignitaries came to be known (after another 125 years and three more major councils) as the Nicene Creed, with later reformulations such as the Athanasian Creed. These various evolutions and iterations of creeds—and others to come over the centuries—declared the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost to be abstract, absolute, transcendent, immanent, consubstantial, coeternal, and unknowable, without body, parts, or passions and dwelling outside space and time. In such creeds all three members are separate persons, but they are a single being, the oft-noted “mystery of the trinity.” They are three distinct persons, yet not three Gods but one. All three persons are incomprehensible, yet it is one God who is incomprehensible
The creeds usurped authority from true Biblical teachings and make creeds that many Christians think are found in the Bible. There is no basis in the Bible for these creeds. They are based in the minds of enterprising men who wanted to get the job of uniting the people completed--and it worked!
The True God
Jesus Christ taught that everlasting life was to KNOW the true God and His son whom He has sent. The creed states that He is unknowable. Somebody is lying here and it is not Jesus Christ.
We can know God as He is, a perfect God in whose image we are created. We are His offspring. We do not grow to maturity to become a goat or frog but grown men or women. It is true. Ask God these questions, He won't mind.
Three persons make up a council called the Godhead. We pray to the Father , in the name of Christ for a witness by holy Spirit.
© 2012 Rodric Anthony Johnson