The Trinity in the OT, the Faith of OT Believers, the Angel of the Lord

A number of years ago there was a lot of debate in certain circles in the UK revolving around these topics: the degree to which Christ/the Trinity is explicitly present in the OT; the nature of the Angel of the Lord; relatedly the object of believers’ faith in the OT (did OT saints trust consciously and explicitly in the Son?); the degree to which revelation is progressive from the OT to the NT. A lot of these threads were explored in the Blackham-Goldsworthy debate:
What are your views on these topics? Some more specific questions might be:
– Does the OT, read on its own terms, clearly present a unipersonal God or a binitatian/Trinitarian God? Or does it murkily present the latter?
– How were OT believers saved? Through explicit faith in the Son, or through other means?
– Who is the Angel of the Lord?

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Call No Man Father, Castor and Pollux, Contraception

1.) How can Paul call Timothy his “true child in the Faith” (1 Tim 1:2; cf. 1 Cor 4:17, 2 Tim 1:2) when Jesus forbids calling anyone Father besides God (Matt 23:9)? I’m assuming Jesus meant “call no man a spiritual father” but that seems to not clear up the issue since it seems like Paul is referring to himself as Timothy’s spiritual father (maybe in a nuanced sense). Is this situation analogous to how, in the next verse, Jesus tells us to call no man instructor except for the Christ, but we obviously have instructors in the church?

2.) What is the significance of Luke mentioning in Acts 28:11 that the boat Paul was sailing on had the twin gods (Castor and Pollux, I think) as figureheads? That might be an historical detail but was curious.

3.) What should Christians think of contraceptives (specifically non-abortive contraceptives, like condoms and birth control)? Should Christians only use methods of “family planning” or are any methods (artificial or natural) of preventing children from being conceived immoral?

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The Church and the Natural Family

In the past two episodes of “Mere Fidelity” there was an underlying issue which was touched on, but not fully discussed. That is the relationship between the biological family and the New Family of which Christ is the firstborn. Examples I am thinking of: 1.) Does the Great Commission now call us to emphasize “being fruitful and multiplying” for this New Family through making disciples, over and against being fruitful in biological families? 2.) For those who cannot have biological families, how much should the church be relied upon to be family? 3.) The New Testament certainly seems to de-emphasize biological family to some degree, what do we make of this?

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