Genesis 1:26 – God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the sky, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
Many wish to use this scripture as evidence of the trinity in the Old Testament. However, what does one have to do in order to get “trinity” out of this verse? One has to first assume the doctrine of the trinity, and then one would have to assume that “God” here represents one of the assumed persons of the assumed doctrine of the trinity, who is speaking to one or two others who are persons of the assumed doctrine of the trinity.
Some of these same trinitarians also claim that the Hebrew word [ELOHIM] for “God” means the plurality of God as depicted in the assumed trinity. In other words, the word ELOHIM is supposed to mean the three persons of God. Applying this idea to the verse, then:
The three persons of God said, “Let us…”
In this scenario, they would have it that “God” represents all three persons, evidently saying to each other, “Let us..”
Nevertheless, all of this they have to add to and read into what God stated.
In reality, when one says “Let us …” or “Let’s” in normal conversation, one person is speaking who is speaking of himself in connection with others who are with him. If I say to my friend, “Let’s go to the beach,” both of us are included in “Let’s,” but only one is speaking. Thus, if the word ELOHIM signifies three persons, all of who are saying “Let us …,” it would imply the one God represented as three persons is saying to someone else who is not the one God, “Let us …”
Actually, in saying “let us…,” the one true God is speaking to someone who is not Himself, who was there with him at that time. From other scriptures we learn that there was one that the only true God made the world of mankind through. (John 1:3,10) This one was with the only true God before the world of mankind was made. (John 17:1,3,5) This one is identified in Colossians 1:15 as the firstborn creature, the first living creature of God who was brought into being.
But wait, someone might say, if the Jesus was their at the time of the creation of man, then how does this harmonize with Isaiah 44:24, which says that Yahweh was “alone” at the creation of the universe? The truth is that Genesis 1 is not depicting the creation of the universe, but rather of the creation of the heavens [the sky above the planet earth, and things in it] and earth [the land masses, and things in them] as related to the planet earth, which planet already “was” in existence at the beginning spoken of in Genesis 1:1, that is, the six days of creation. “Earth” does not always mean the planet, as can be seen from Genesis 1:10; likewise “heavens” does not necessarily mean the literal physical stars, etc., nor where God dwells, as can be seen from Genesis 1:8,9, where the same exact Hebrew word is used as in Genesis 1:1. The “beginning” of Genesis 1:1 includes all six days, whereas, before the six days began, the planet earth already was. — Genesis 1:1,2; Exodus 20:11; 30:17.
Thus, Isaiah 44:24 describes the hurling forth of all the unknown number of stars [big bang], including the sun with its planet earth, throughout the universe, whereas Genesis 1 is describing the creation of things upon the already existing planet. Therefore, it was not necessary for Jesus to have been present at the creation spoken of Isaiah 44:24, but, since all of the world of mankind was made through the pre-human Jesus (John 1:10), and without him not one of these was made (John 1:3), Jesus was indeed present at the creation of Adam and Eve, and further, Jesus was the instrument that Yahweh used in the creation as described in Genesis 1 and 2. “Through him the world was made.” — John 1:10.
The “creation” in Colossians 1:15,16 is speaking of living creation, dominions, powers, both visible and invisible, whether in heaven or earth. In Colossians 1:15, the genitive partitive usage includes Jesus in the creation being spoken of, and yet at the same sets him apart from the rest of the creation, since he is the firstborn, the first to be brought forth, of that creation. Thus, Jesus is the “firstborn creature,” and by means of him the rest of the living creation was made. This does not include the material universe itself, since the material universe is not a sentient power.
It is also quite possible that, like many other times in the Bible, the word “alone” [Hebrew, “bad”, Strong’s #905] in Isaiah 44:24 is being used in relative terms, so that Yahweh was saying that none of the idol gods nor the humans spoken of in the context were with Him.
We might note also that the scriptures speak of the angels [sons of God, figurative stars] as being present at the time spoken of in Genesis 1:26. — Job 38:4-7.
There is nothing in Genesis 1:26,27, or anywhere else in the entire Bible, that says anything at all about three distinct persons in Yahweh, nor that Yahweh was here speaking to Himself. The conclusion for such has to be added to what is said in the scriptures, and read into what is said in the scriptures.
Some related studies and discussions:
John 1 and the Logos (Word) of God
Colossians 1:16 and the Creator
Is Jesus the Creator?
Yahweh Speaks to His Son – Genesis 1:26
Who is Yahweh (Jehovah) Speaking To?
Genesis 1:26,27 – Trinitarian Assumptions
In the Beginning: Genesis 1:1; John 1:1
Isaiah 44:24 and the Trinity Doctrine