Are there any current Protestant denominations which do not believe that Jesus was born divine (i.e. that Jesus was God at birth)? Even if they consider Christ's spirit as divine, are there any that believe that Christ's spirit united with Jesus at some point after his birth?

  • Could you be a bit more specific? What precisely do you mean when you say "not divine"? There are many different unorthodox doctrines related to Jesus Christ's divinity. Are you looking for adherents to any of those unorthodox doctrines, or do you have a particular one or subset in mind? What do you mean by denomination? Do you mean only currently active mainstream denominations, or would you also be interested in currently active smaller groups, or do you mean any sect throughout church history? It's currently a bit difficult to tell what kind of an answer you are seeking. Mar 19, 2014 at 19:05
  • Are you referring to the doctrine of Adoptionism? Mar 19, 2014 at 19:51
  • That would be an example of an old religion, yes. Good find btw Mar 19, 2014 at 22:28
  • This article might be interesting. Mar 19, 2014 at 22:59

1 Answer 1


The doctrine you are describing is called Adoptionism. It is one of many Nontrinitarian doctrines. Nontrinitarianism is a catch-all category for all forms of Christology which do not agree with orthodox Trinitarian doctrine. Although some forms of Nontrinitarianism are adhered to by some mainstream denominations today, such as LDS and Jehova's Witnesses, adoptionism is not. There are no modern mainstream denominations that teach adoptionism.

The particular form of adoptionism which you mentioned (in which the divine Christ was united with Jesus at some point after his birth) was first popularized by Theodotus of Byzantium during the second century.


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