In this segment, Dr. Badawi continues telling us, based on selective misquotation of Biblical texts and writings of the Early Church Fathers, that the Bible and the early Church Fathers do not provide any proof for the existence of the Trinity or for the concept of atonement. I often wonder how Dr. Badawi explains the fact that 1.3 billion people on this planet believe both doctrines to be Biblical. Joseph Priestly was a brilliant chemist, however, his interpretation of the Bible was simply wrong. Citing his contributions to science in order to give credibility to his religious beliefs is nothing more than an appeal to irrelevant authority.
Jamal Badawi: He was born in Leeds England and was raised a strict Calvinist, he did not agree with all of the doctrines of the Church of England. He learned Greek and Hebrew and was not accepted into any University since he did not subscribe to all of the doctrines of the Church, so he went to an open academy where he was exposed to the writings of Servetus and others and concluded that the Bible did not have any proof for the Trinity or for atonement. Like Servetus, he had many talents and contributed to science, discovering oxygen, his main interest was theology and he was assistant minister until it was found that he was a Unitarian. He was a teacher in the Arian academy at Wellington. He big breakthrough occurred when he joined the Earl of Chilborn as his private librarian and accompanied him on his travels. He wrote many works which angered the Church.
Issue 1: Biblical proof for the Trinity
Dr. Badawi loves to repeat his incorrect claim that the Bible contains no evidence for the triune nature of God. The truth is that the Bible contains overwhelming evidence for the Trinity. Dr. Badawi's repetition of this claim does not make it true, nor does the citation of the beliefs of others remove any of these passages from the Bible. What does the Bible say about the nature of God?
The Bible calls the Father God (Philippians 1:2). The Bible also calls the Son God (John 1:1,14 and Colossians 2:9) and calls the Holy Spirit God (Acts 5:3-4).
The Bible calls the Father the creator (Isaiah 64:8 and 44:24). The Bible also calls the Son the creator (John 1:3 and Colossians 1:15-17) and calls the Holy Spirit the creator (Job 33:4 and 26:13).
The Bible says that the Father is everywhere (1 Kings 8:27). The Bible also says that the Son is everywhere (Matthew 28:20) and so is the Holy Spirit (Psalm 139:7-10).
The Bible tells us that the Father knows everything (1 John 3:20). The Bible also tells us that the Son is all knowing (John 16:30 and 21:17) and so is the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 2:10-11)
The Bible says that the Father is eternal (Psalm 90:2). The Bible also says that the Son is eternal (Micah 5:1-2) and so is the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:11).
Last, but certainly not least, the Father gives us life (Genesis 2:7) and so does the Son (John 1:3 and 5:21) and the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:6,8).
Issue 2: Biblical proof for Atonement
The entire Bible tells us about our relationship with God through atonement! First, we begin with God who is holy (1 Samuel 2:2 , Isaiah 43:3,14,15, and Revelation 4:8), is just (Deuteronomy 32:4, Psalm 89:14; 97:2 and, 145:17), and righteous (Psalm 145:17). God is too pure to look on evil (Hab. 1:13) and He will judge us (Psalm 50:6; 96:10, 13; Isaiah 11:3-4) punishing the ungodly (Romans 1:18).
Now we take a look at man. Humans are sinners and sin is breaking the Law of God (1 John 3:4). We inherited our sinful nature from Adam (Gen. 3:1-6; Rom. 5:12). What does the Bible say about human nature? We are by nature children of wrath because we are sinners (Eph. 2:3), our heart is wicked (Jer. 17:9; Mark 7:21-23), we are spiritually blind (1 Cor. 2:14), we do not seek God (Rom. 3:11); we are lawless, rebellious, unholy, and profane (1 Tim. 1:9); we suppress the truth of God in unrighteousness (Rom. 1:18); and we are at enmity with God (Rom. 5:10).
God will judge each of us for the evil that we do and have done. God will punish the evil (Ex.20:5; Isaiah 11:4) according to the Law (Deut. 29:21; Josh. 8:34; Rev. 21:8). This punishment is eternal (Matt. 3:12; Rev. 14:11) and we will forever be separated from God (Isaiah 59:2).
Fortunately, for us, God wants to make peace with us so that we can regain our fellowship with Him. The Means of Reconciliation is atonement. What does the Bible say about atonement? Atonement comes through the shedding of blood (Lev. 17:11). The sacrifice must be unblemished (Lev. 22:19) and must be conducted by appointed priests (1 Sam. 2:28) who must be lawfully clean (Ex. 29:1-9;19-35).
The Bible tells us that Jesus as the Atonement, or Sacrifice for ours sins because He is unblemished (1 Peter 1:19) according to the Law (Heb. 9:22); He is the High Priest (Heb. 4:14; 6:20); He is substitutionary (1 Pet. 2:24; Is. 53; Eph. 5:2); he is our propitiation [removes God's wrathful judgment] (1 John 2:2; 4:10); and He is a satisfactory sacrifice to God (Eph. 5:2, 10).
Through Jesus we obtain justification. We are lawfully righteous before God (Rom. 3:24-26); are clothed in righteousness (Isaiah 61:10); have Imputed righteousness (Rom. 4:6): escape the judgment of God (Rom. 8:1); are restored to fellowship (1 Thess. 5:9-10); are at peace with God (Rom. 5:1) ; are reconciled to God (2 Cor. 5:19); are righteous before God (2 Cor. 5:21); have access to God (Eph. 2:18); and, have an advocate with the Father (1 John 2:1).
Jamal Badawi: He said that the narratives of the birth of Jesus were inconsistent with each other, he said that Jesus was a man like all other humans however, he was chosen to introduce a moral dispensation. He said that Jesus revealed knowledge about the next life where people were rewarded not by baptism, but by their acts. He denied the virgin birth which did more harm to Unitarianism that good. In 1691 there were riots in Birmingham where the homes of Unitarians were burned and the army was called in. Priestly was warned so he escaped to London. In 1794, he sailed to the United States with Benjamin Franklin where he established Unitarian Churches in the Philadelphia area.
Issue 1: The birth narratives
The birth narratives are not inconsistent at all. Matthew gives Joseph's genealogy and Luke gives that of Mary, it is clear that Joseph was descended from David through Solomon and Mary through Nathan.
Issue 2: Moral dispensation and salvation through acts
God's divine plan, as I discussed in the previous paragraph, is that mankind is saved only through the blood of Jesus. There are two large problems with the idea that man can save himself through performing acts such as charity, prayer, fasting, or pilgrimages. The first problem is that this idea elevates man to the point that we can "do" something that is acceptable to an all good and all powerful God. Second, it implies that God must accept out acts as sufficient payment for our sins, thus lowering God, while elevating man.
Jamal Badawi: He used the Bible and writings of the Church Fathers and concluded that the Church was Unitarian.
Was the early Church Unitarian as Dr. Badawi constantly claims? NO! Repeating a falsehood will never make it true, so I will repeat the truth. Here are some quotations from the early Church Fathers:
Polycarp (70-155/160 AD). Bishop of Smyrna. Disciple of John the Apostle:
Justin Martyr (100?-165? AD). Christian apologist and martyr:
Ignatius of Antioch (died 98/117 AD). Bishop of Antioch:
Irenaeus (115-190 AD) - who Dr. Badawi implied was a Unitarian in an earlier segment:
Tertullian (160-215AD) - who Dr. Badawi implied was a Unitarian in an earlier segment:
Origen (185-254 AD) - who Dr. Badawi implied was a Unitarian in an earlier segment:
Jesus said no such thing. In fact, Jesus said in Matthew 16:18:
Is there any evidence of this? Of course not! The Gnostics were a heretical group which denied the human nature of Jesus and they have nothing to do with orthodox Christian teachings. Jesus said that He and the Father were One, not the Pagans!
Jamal Badawi: He said that the Biblical account of creation talks about One God and when it mentions we, the verse speak about the singular. Genesis 1:26, if you read verse 27, it ways that God created man in his image singular. The second reference was in Genesis 11:7, in that verse God said let us go down and in verse 8 it said the Lord in singular which means one. A simpler way of responded that in English, Arabic, and Hebrew and other human languages, the King says we and God is the King of all Kings.
Dr. Badawi is, once again, attempting to misled us by imposing the rules of English and Arabic upon Biblical Hebrew. There is no plural of respect in Biblical Hebrew. This is admitted even by the Jewish rabbis. Maybe it exists in the Qur'an but this is irrelevant for the Hebrew Scriptures.
Jamal Badawi: If Jesus were the maker of the world, he would not say that he does nothing on his own authority, but through the authority of the Father.
See the discussion of John 5:17-19 below.
Jesus was both man and God, human and divine and this passage, which is probably Badawi's favorite, has nothing to do with the question of hierarchy. The term greater refers to position, not nature. For example, in Philippians 2:6-8:
If Jesus wanted to say that He was inferior to God in nature, He would have said, "The Father is better than I."
In contrast to this, if we read Hebrews 1:4, it says (speaking of Jesus),
Notice here that Jesus is better than the angels, so the term superior is used. Once again, the term greater refers to position, not nature.
I have already demonstrated that Dr. Badawi's claim about the early Church Father is untrue, now, was the divinity of Jesus "unknown during the life of the Apostles?
Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God."
Did Jesus object to Peter's statement? No!
What about the Jews? The Jews were very zealous of divine unity!
Jesus said to them, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working." For this reason the Jews tried all the harder to kill him; not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.
How did Jesus respond?
Please think about what Jesus said in this passage and put aside Dr. Badawi's attempts to distort it out of context. Jesus cannot do anything by himself and can only do what the Father does because He and the Father are One. Jesus does not say that he can only do what the Father tells Him to do, He can only do what the Father does, making Him equal to the Father. In fact, Jesus is doing what God is doing, which makes them One! If you question my interpretation, ask yourself one question: why did the Jewish leaders want to execute Jesus for blasphemy if He was merely saying that He can do only what God allows, or tells, Him to do? Unlike Dr. Badawi, these men understood exactly what Jesus was saying, but like Dr. Badawi, they did not believe.
They did, see the above discussions.
But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. "Look," he said, "I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God." At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." Then he fell on his knees and cried out, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them." When he had said this, he fell asleep.
Once again, Dr. Badawi is wrong!
Responses to Jamal Badawi's "Radio Al-Islam Channel RA 200"
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