I've read a lot of church history over the years, I'm sure I miss some things and get some wrong. But I'm also sure your characterization of me as denying things I don't like is just your own prejudice.
Mainstream is orthodox in my way of thinking. If you want to make mainstream include apostate churches then I'll remember not to use the term.
But seriously on the question of where Trinitarianism came from, we really do need to trace that back. Some of the early churches taught it, while others didn't.
Which ones where and how far back?
Early Scripture that taught it were created by the churches that taught it, while the Scripture that didn't teach it were created by those who didn't; some Scripture was selected by committee and some were not, mainly based on how well they complied with the "One True Faith" that they had come up with. But even before then, the idea itself had to have come from somewhere; I only mentioned the Hindu idea because it's a very well-known example.
Certainly there has to have been some kind of research on this question. But it would be better to look at non-Christian research. It's just that Christian research, or rather what passes for research among Christians, has a very bad reputation for lying through their teeth. We see it all the time in "creation science". And we see it in their revisionist American history. Indeed, Faith, you yourself fell victim to their outright lies when you posted all those "Founding Father quotes", all of which turned out to be complete and utter lies.
Who it is who rewrites and revises history for the consumption of people now is not that easy to determine. You have clearly bought a lot of lies yourself, that you probably accept because of the plausible fictions that have been created around them. Certainly your view of church history is a pack of lies and I have no idea who you are trusting for all that. There is little point in trying to change your mind, and I don't have the expertise or breadth of knowledge needed to do that anyway. I present what I'm convinced of and I think I have very good reason to trust it if I do.
The histories of the church I've encountered are all very consistent on the development of the Trinity as historically based on scripture all the way back to the beginning. That you could believe people just made it up out of their own heads, and even wrote scripture to support it is beyond reason into totally daft, and that you actually LIKE this idea and seem to believe it just speaks to some kind of deep need of your own to hate Christianity that I cannot fathom.
Where is your evidence by the way? Where are the bogus scriptures that were supposedly created? (Any such inventions would fairly blast your eyeballs out with their fictiveness; people are just not that good at lying, and especially not in such a complex way as inventing elaborate scripture, good grief what are you thinking? They put in all those indicators of the Trinity that occur everywhere throughout the scriptures? Get a grip, man.). There should be at least two differing sets out there on this subject. Where are they? I have never encountered such bizarre ideas even on the fringes of the reading I've done on these things, even to be mentioned, even touched on.
Perhaps you really do believe you've been lied to but half the lies you say are lies are just your own confusion about things and your history of the Church is a gigantic lie you've chosen to believe instead of the other lies which may not really be lies.
I just decided to listen to a sermon on the subject at Sermon Audio, found the following one by Professor Bruce Ware, someone I know of as a reliable Reformed teacher, where he explains how the early church encountered the principles of the Trinity in the scriptures and how they tried to deal with them in the early years. He has a much greater knowledge of how things played out in the early church than I do, and since this is only the first of a series of six teachings on the Trinity I may try to listen to the rest.
But this one deals with most of what we've been talking about here, including the early Councils that worked out all the related doctrines, not just Nicea but the Council at Constantinople, then the one at Ephesus and then Chalcedon, which all contributed to working out the different aspects of the nature of God. If you can find the time and any interest at all I think it might be worth it for you to listen to it.
Half a century ago, I attended a Protestant church and Sunday School and Vacation Bible School. We were taught that lying is a sin. And now apparently lying is de rigueur for "true Christians". How very sad.
Again I suspect it's you who has bought the lies that are designed to put the truth in doubt.
The sun analogy doesn't seem to fit modalism as I've understood it, which represents God as "manifesting" in the three persons, and not any of them at the same time as another or all at once -- though this isn't all that clear to me -- as the sun analogy has it. It would have to sometimes be nothing but light or nothing but heat or nothing but orb, or orb and heat without light, etc., to represent modalism.
Nevertheless I can see that it doesn't work for the Trinity all that well either.
But I'm also sure your characterization of me as denying things I don't like is just your own prejudice.
I can provide as many examples as you'd like. But for now, this current statement of yours fits the bill. Your 'memory' is off again.
Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass
And again, if you look at your source it is pieces parts, all taken out of context. There is not a single one that points to the concept of the Trinity. That is an extra-Biblical human concept and those verses taken out of context used to support the human, not Biblical, concept.
Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
The mere existence of these other interpretations testifies that there is no one, right and true theology
Very odd logic there.
No, it's the only logic that makes any sense. Since there's an absence of any actual evidence for a Trinity, God, Jesus or the Holy Ghost, sects are free to cast any interpretation that suits their theology upon Biblical passages, and that's what they do.
False religions, cults, the ponderings of single individuals with an axe to grind all interpreting the Bible for themselves, against the long history of the understanding of the best of the best being validated by hundreds of churches before it's made dogma, all that testifies that there is no one right and true theology?
On what basis do you determine which "religions, cults and ponderings" are false? Interpretations of Biblical passages, right? What determines which interpretation is correct? Unless this determination traces back to actual evidence instead of inconsistent and contradictory Biblical passages of unknown provenance then religious sects can argue inconclusively among themselves for centuries without resolving anything definitively. Which is precisely what world religious history tells us has happened and is still happening.
Had you been born in the time of Caesar you would be arguing as determinedly for Roman gods as you are today for your Trinitarian beliefs.
The devil pokes a few unstable people in the ribs...
You haven't exactly been the picture of stability here. You're a poor candidate to be calling other people unstable, plus there's no evidence for the devil, either.
False religions, cults, the ponderings of single individuals with an axe to grind all interpreting the Bible for themselves, against the long history of the understanding of the best of the best being validated by hundreds of churches before it's made dogma, all that testifies that there is no one right and true theology? The devil pokes a few unstable people in the ribs and says "invent a religion" and that's all it takes to defeat the true religion. Unfortunately that is exactly what has happened, you got that right.
Your bad logic was that the existence of many theologies doesn't mean there isn't a right and true theology.
The unstable ones I had in mind, single individuals who invent cults and gather a following, include such as Joseph Smith, Mohammed, Charles Taze Russell, Ellen G. White, could add David Koresh and other contemporaries I suppose. This I contrasted with the judgment of doctrine by the leaders of hundreds of churches in the early centuries of the church as the Councils met to hear arguments based on the Bible.
Who determines which interpretation is correct? All those people who were involved in working it out. And in most cases the Biblical basis is not that ambiguous, though it takes careful thought, that's just something heretics like to claim. It seems to be more an article faith than evidenced fact that there is such ambiguity in the scriptures.
The Protestant Reformation had many leaders too. As the Book of Proverbs says, there is safety in many counselors.
Your bad logic was that the existence of many theologies doesn't mean there isn't a right and true theology.
That was all you chose to quote, but that wasn't all I said. I also said that there is no evidence, only inconsistent and contradictory Biblical passages of unknown provenance.
Now if even in the absence of any evidence everyone still expressed the same theology then one could argue that there must be some truth to that theology, otherwise everyone wouldn't believe the same thing. But the reality is that there are many different theologies, and this is because in the absence of evidence everyone is free to cast their own interpretations upon the text.
The unstable ones I had in mind, single individuals who invent cults and gather a following, include such as Joseph Smith, Mohammed, Charles Taze Russell, Ellen G. White, could add David Koresh and other contemporaries I suppose.
And how are you proving that Joseph Smith and Mohammed were the "unstable" ones and not Peter and Paul. Can I guess that it will involve quoting Bible passages out of context?
It seems to be more an article faith than evidenced fact that there is such ambiguity in the scriptures.
The many different Christian sects with their differing Biblical interpretations are evidence that there is plenty of ambiguity and contradiction in the Bible. The non-Trinitarians use the same Bible you do, and when you say they are heretics or tricked by the devil they can say, "Right back at you," and since there's no real evidence either way, who can say. And since both sides are actually just piling fiction upon fiction, beyond the disputants who really cares.
I've given enough reason to regard the mainstream doctrine as the truth over any of the sects and cults and heresies it seems to me, but you like your version I've already answered, so there's nothing more to say is there?