AI (Artificial Intelligence) is a very hot topic today. One of the newest iterations, ChatGPT, learns and teaches itself. Is it a good thing, or will we rue the day man brought this particular Frankenstein “to life?” All of a sudden, everyone seems to want to understand the pros and cons of its existence. A few days ago, a friend sent us a link to Kyle Hill’s YouTube video, “ChatGPT Explained Completely.” He is engaging and understandable in his presentation – at least as far as anyone can truly understand and clarify Chat GPT. Hill explains the neural structure of chat GPT and compares it to the neural structure of the human brain. He also discusses how chat GPT (Is it chat GPT or ChatGPT?) assigned 175 billion different word weights (levels of importance) that are used to choose each word when creating intelligible sentences, paragraphs, etc. He then admits:
…we fundamentally do not know how chat GPT came up with the embedding that it did or how it works. Of course, this isn’t really surprising. Chat GPT is a neural network and it operates like your brain, and you can’t tell me the decisions you make why you make them, what they look like on the inside.
To demonstrate what he means to all of us novices, Hill holds a cat up to the camera and points out that you recognize it is a cat and you might describe of the elements of the cat like, it has whiskers, but you don’t have a full description of what “catness” is. You can’t describe how your brain arrives at “catitude.” His point is that we cannot see exactly how our own brain or chat GPT does what they do. We cannot really comprehend it or fully know how it functions, but we can apprehend it – or have some touch points of understanding. Just because we cannot explain how the human brain or chat GPT does what they do does not mean we have to chalk them up to magic or myth. There are simply things – lots of things – that are beyond our comprehension, but we do not deny their reality or their validity.
Around the same time as we received this video, we received a question from another friend, this one living in South Africa, asking for a simple explanation of the Trinity. This struck us as God’s sense of humor. We do not know how a chat GPT program that humans created “chose all those 175 billion different weights.” In turn, the humans that created chat GPT cannot explain how our brains arrive at our decisions. Any simple explanation we rendered on the Trinity would probably end up being heretical.
In his presentation, Hill worked from what is known of chat GPT to what is unknown and, in the process, told us a great deal about it. But, contrary to the title of his video, Chat GPT Is Not Explained Completely and cannot be. Human beings seem to accept that there are things we do not understand about these entities or even our own brains.
Given the truth of our limitations to even understand our own brains, it seems we should easily accept that humans (and/or chat GPT) cannot fully comprehend God. Yet there is some expectation, at times bordering on demand, that humans who were created by God – with Whom there is nothing in creation to compare – should somehow be able to explain Him fully and how exactly He exists. As Mr. Spock would say, that seems entirely illogical.
Nearly all cults and false religions that militantly deny the doctrine of the Trinity use as their first assault volley, “The word Trinity isn’t in the Bible.” That is true but quite irrelevant. The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. The word “grandfather” doesn’t occur in the Bible’s original languages but is implied and described. In Proverbs 17:6, we read:
Grandchildren are the crown of old men
The word “Grandchildren” implies the old men – for whom the grandchildren are a crown – are grandfathers. As we approach the question of the doctrine of the Trinity, there are aspects we cannot explain. The Trinity is not explicit in Scripture, but it is implicit in the text and can be found everywhere in Scripture. However, in an effort to provide an “answer” to the skeptic, we often work far too hard to explain the unexplainable to a finite human being with a “simple explanation.”
We suggested to our friend in South Africa, to begin with a few simple questions. They might start by asking what sort of a being God is. Is God simply a larger version of us, like the Roman and Greek Gods of old? This question is important because it forces the skeptic to consider something they previously had not. What sort of being is God? If they are a member of a loosely Bible-based cult group, one who supposedly relies on the Bible for their religious enlightenment, they will likely say no, that God is not merely a larger version of us. Our next question would be – is God physical or not physical? The reason for this query is to establish a sort of “verbal dictionary,” so we and the cultists are talking about the same thing. They will likely answer unless they are Mormons; God is not physical.
We would also ask if the individual asking the question believes the Bible to be reliable. According to the Bible itself, nature reveals God exists and that He is powerful (Romans 1:19-20), but not much beyond that, regarding God’s physical nature. The various books and writings that compose the Bible are the only written self-revelation from God we have that directly tell us what God is like, without explaining His substance or exactly how he exists.
The written self-revelation tells us there is only One God and only One Savior (Isaiah 44:6-8, 45:18; 1 Timothy 2:5-6). All other alleged gods are false by definition. If we believe the Bible that there is only one God and One Savior, other gods simply cannot and do not exist in reality. This one God created everything BY HIMSELF; no one was with him. (Isaiah 44:24) The Bible also unapologetically teaches the Father is God, the Son is God the Holy Spirit is God. As our friend, Dr. Donald Williams, might say, the Bible SAYS that and then just walks away! It never answers the how and why questions – HOW can God exist as a Trinity, and WHY would God exist as a Trinity?
Scripture never explicitly states the Father created all things – although that is implied – because, after all, He is God. However, it is explicitly stated the Son (the Word) created everything that has been created. (John 1:3) It caps that assertion off by stating that without Him, NOTHING was made that has been made.
The Bible never implies or states there is only One person that carries the Name YHWH, but indeed explicitly shows at least two share the name in such places as Zechariah 2:7–13, where YHWH sends YHWH to dwell in the midst of His (YHWH’s) people.1See “Who Sent Jehovah?” The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit all share the same name (singular) in the sending out of the Apostles:
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name [singular] of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, [they all share the name] teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20)
The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are likewise all indicated to be YHWH in the baptismal formula – the new believers were to be baptized in the name – singular – of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Matthew 28:19)
Other how and why questions you may be asked are, “Did God come down from heaven as Jesus, or did He divide Himself?” or “If Jesus is at God’s right hand in heaven, how can they be one God?” “Did Jesus pray to Himself?” “How could Jesus raise Himself from the dead?” “Why did Jesus get tired?” 2See “Answering JW Objections to the Deity of Christ” These questions and other favorite cult “gotchas” assume God is a mere physical being like we are – just a larger and more powerful version of us! And yet, if asked the first questions, they may have already denied that they believe that!
God is a different kind of being altogether and does not suffer the same limitations of nature as we created beings. Within the nature of the uncreated, eternally self-existent God are three persons. The three persons have relationships with, love, and serve one another. Just because we know Jesus “does the will of His Father” does not mean He is somehow inferior in nature to the Father. When we as humans surmise that issue could be a problem for the Godhead, we are looking at it from the perspective of our own sinful nature, with our desire to be “over” or “superior,” and thus “better” than other human beings. The Godhead does NOT have that problem, but freely gives honor to each other.
There is one “what” (God) and three “Whos” (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Can we apprehend this? Yes, we are capable of apprehending it, acknowledging and agreeing with the teaching, though we cannot comprehend it fully because we are finite. Our finite minds cannot even explain how our brain knows and arrives at the essence of “catness” when we’ve seen it. Now imagine our cat trying to comprehend “humanness.” He apprehends simply that he somehow exists alongside two large and often completely inexplicable beings, though he cannot even comprehend what “existence” is or how or why that reality is so. He would not understand even if we were to explain it to him in every detail. The cat accepts the reality of it all and loves being petted, scratched, fed, and spoiled rotten, and does not worry that he cannot understand how and why, even if he were to be somehow made aware of the concept of “understanding.” And a cat is far closer to us in intelligence than we are to God.
OK, let’s look at the first question, “Did God come down from heaven as Jesus, or did He divide Himself?” In the incarnation, the Son, not the Father, took on human nature while remaining fully God. The Son wasn’t a “mixture, ” a sort of half and half of both natures, but was and remains fully God and fully man. We are told, “For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.” (Colossians 1:19)
The second question is also answered in the incarnation. “If Jesus is at God’s right hand in heaven, how can they be one God?” Although Jesus is fully God, he is also still today and forevermore fully human, “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” (I Timothy 2:5). They are one in substance (God) and separate in person (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). The Son is also fully human, while the Father and the Holy Spirit are not.
It is interesting that the Bible explicitly states that the one thing we have to believe and confess is that Jesus is YHWH, that He died and was raised from the dead, and we must call on Him as YHWH to be saved, as Romans 10:9-13 plainly teaches.3See “From False Premise to False Conclusion: JWs and the Trinity” Jesus said:
For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will. For the Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. (John 5:21-24)
God forbids worshiping anything other than Him. The Father outlines what “honoring the Son even as we honor the Father” looks like when He says, “Let all God’s angels worship him” (Hebrews 1:6) when only God is to be worshipped. Just to make sure everyone understands the Father declares to the Son, “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever, the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.” (Hebrews 1:8)
We Honor the Father by honoring the Son. Believe and confess Jesus the Son is YHWH and be saved. Please do it today.Ω
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