Singular Personal Pronouns

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Singular Personal Pronouns

Yates, A Vindication of Unitarianism: In Reply to the Rev. Ralph Wardlaw, Part 4

When we read, that “there is one God, and there is none other but he,” unless we are swayed by prejudice, the words will at once suggest the idea of One Intelligent Being, alone possessed of every perfection, the cause and original of all things. The word God does not denote a collection of persons, or a council of intelligent agents; it signifies simply one person or intelligent agent. Consequently every text, which affirms that there is but one God, implies that there is but one person in the Godhead.

The Unity of God, as one individual person, is also denoted throughout the Bible by the almost constant use of singular pronouns, whenever any thought, action, attribute, or condition, is ascribed to the Supreme Being. In all languages the personal pronouns of the singular number are understood to apply only to one person. Thus, if I were writing a letter, by employing the pronouns of the first person and singular number, I, Me, My, I should confine my assertions to myself as one individual person.

Such being the universal application of pronouns, it is evident, not only to those who have studied Greek and Hebrew, but to all who know the use and meaning of human speech, that throughout the whole Bible God is almost uniformly mentioned as one person, this being implied in the almost constant use of singular pronouns.

When God appears to Abraham, he thus speaks; (Gen. 17) “I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect; and I will make my covenant between me and thee.” To represent the address of more persons than one, the following language would have been employed; “We are the Almighty Gods, walk before us and be thou perfect; and we will make our covenant between us and thee.


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