Category Archives: 1 John

1 John 5:7 – Biblical Oneness Vs. Trinitarian Dogma

1 John 5:6
This is he who came by water and blood, Jesus Christ; not with the water only, but with the water and the blood.
1 John 5:7
It is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is the truth.
1 John 5:8
For there are three who bear witness, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood; and the three agree as one. — World English translation

In the KJV, based on the so-called “Textus Receptus”, 1 John 5:7 reads:

For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

Most translations leave out the phrase “in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.” This is because these words are not found in the earlier Greek manuscripts, and more than likely were added later.

At any rate, even as it is given in the Textus Receptus, there is nothing there about three persons in one God (theos), or three persons in one being (ousia). The Greek word for “one” in 1 John 5:7 of the Textus Receptus is the word that is usually transliterated as “hen”. It is neuter, and thus would call for a neuter designation in reference to what the three are being spoken of as “one”. For the designation to have been one as in “one God”, the Greek would call for the Greek word masculine “heis”, not the neuter “hen”. This is shown in 1 Corinthians 8:6, where the Greek has “heis theos” (one God). Likewise, if the thought should be one being, then the Greek would call for the Greek word “mia”, not the Greek word “hen”. This is shown in the trinitarian phrases, “”treis hypostaseis en mia ousia”, (“three persons in one substance”), or “mia ousia, treis hypostaseis” (“One essence in three persons”).

The neuter designation is also indicated on 1 John 5:8, which reads in the King James Version:

And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one (Greek, hen).

Thus the oneness being spoken of is a oneness of “agreement,” not of being “one God”, or of “one being”.

This is the same kind of oneness that Jesus prayed for his followers to have with himself and his God:

that they may be one, even as we are. — John 17:11.

that they may all be one; even as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be one in us. — John 17:21.

Nor does the latter scripture say, as some would seem to want it to say: “that they may all be one; but not as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, and not that they also may be one in us.” Jesus is most definitely praying for the same manner of oneness that he has with his God and Father (John 10:30) be extended to include his followers. If Jesus’ oneness with his God and Father means that Jesus is one God with his God (self-contradiction), then Jesus would actually have been praying for his followers to become one God with his Father.

Thus, 1 John 5:7, even as it reads in the Textus Receptus, says nothing about three persons in one God. Like all other scriptures presented to allegedly support the doctrine of the trinity, the trinitarian idea has to be assumed, added to, and read into what is stated. Even as it appears in the Textus Receptus, there is no reference at all to the trinity dogma.

See also: