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Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Gwyneth, Dec 27, 2002.
Please can someone explain to me the Trinity - I have great difficulty understanding this.
ROFL - if anyone here does explain it logically they should get a Templeton.
The three persons of the Godhead are separate and distinct but also one. If it made sense, it would be science and not theology.
Some people like to use the example of water having three forms: solid, liquid, and gas. This is, however, a false analogy since in that case the water is one thing taking on three different configurations. The persons of the Trinity are separate, yet also one.
P.S. I'm not trying to be flippant here. I ROFL'd because you've pointed to one of the great unfathomables of our faith.
Well, Joshua, I'm a trinity.
Body, soul, and spirit.
Well, Joshua, I'm a trinity.
Body, soul, and spirit
Only with some theolgians.....Not all believe the soul/spirit of man are separate.
okay. But I am still a trinity:
Daughter, Mother, Grandmother!
Hey! Be careful. Your sounding an awful lot like one of those dreaded modalists....
My ex-daughter in law was just remarried to a Jehovah's witness. My 9 year old grandson is here and would like to explain what he believes about the Trinity. His words will be his own. He is very strong in his beliefs and love of Jesus.
Here is Derek.......
The Trinity is the Father,the Son & the Holy Spirit the Father is God the Son is Jeses & they are all the Lord or one person.
That's my boy, and that's all we need to understand.
Spelling, punctuation and all.
Now back to playing with presents, I guess.
Jesus is God:
"The Word was God... And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us" (John 1:1, 14).
"God was manifest in the flesh" (1 Timothy 3:16).
"The glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ" (Titus 2:13).
"Unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever" (Hebrews 1:8).
"And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God" (John 20:28).
God the Son is eternally subordinate to God the Father (John 14:28, Mark 14:36), but this makes him no less God, just as a human son can be subordinate to his human father without being any less human.
God the Word is eternally subordinate to God the Father, but this makes him no less God, just as what you speak and do are always subordinate to you without these being any less you. How could we know you if you never spoke or did anything? In the same way, how could we know the Father except by his Word and Son, Jesus Christ (John 14:6-7, 1:14; Luke 1:35)?
Subordination isn't antithetical to unity, just as 1a x 1b x 1c = 1abc.
The best description of the Trinity or as some like to say the Unity is found in 1John 5:7 "For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word (Jesus) and the Holy Spirit and these three are one.
Hence there are three that are also one. How does God do it? if we could use the 90% of brain space that we are not able to use, I doubt we could still get it. But it is probably blasphemy to suggest that our awesome God could be comprehended by men.
An analogy would be one graphic image made up of three concentric circles: while it is one thing, that is, no one would claim that it is three separate graphic images, yet the one involves three:
"Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matthew 3:16-17).
"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" (Matthew 28:19).
Gwyneth, no one can explain the Trinity.
Well, that's not completely accurate.
We can explain what it is, but not how.
God is God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Not one divided into three separate persons, but all three are completely God, yet there is only one God.
How this can be is a mystery to us but so are many things of God.
The doctrine of the Three-one God is clearly Biblical. God is a triune God, not three gods, but one God existing as a Trinity. Polytheism is a heresy teaching many gods or deities. Trinitarianism is the doctrine of the Bible, one God existing as a Trinity. God the Father is like God the Son, and these two are like God the Holy Spirit, yet God the Father is not God the Son, and God the Son is not God the Father, and God the Spirit is not God the Father and vice versa and on and on. These three are distinct from each other yet one as much as they can be one in every aspect of the word "one" yet in such manner that there is distinction between the three. There is no Christianity without Biblical Trinitarianism. This means that e.g. such cults as Oneness Pentecostalism are clearly seen to be antichristian and un-christian. The same goes for the Jehovah's Witnesses, who deny the uncreated eternal deity of the Incarnate Son of God. But to mention more subtle movements. Those are also un-christian sects who deny the eternal divine Sonship of Jesus Christ, and thus the eternal divine Fatherhood of God the Father. An example of denial of Christ's divine Sonship would be the antichristian heresy of incarnational sonship. This heresy says Jesus Christ became "Son" at the incarnation. Some have claimed the famous John F MacArthur has taught this damnable heresy. I do not know if he still teaches it. Yet another thing is that the papal whore church, the Roman Catholic Church, is seemingly Biblically orthodox on the Sonship of Christ, yet it denies Him on other points of vital truth and in its works. While Romanism admits of Christ's eternal divine Sonship it denies His Person when it teaches the abominable heresy of transsubstantiation, which doctrine denies the once and for all incarnation of the Son of God in normal human flesh, yet apart from sin. So this in turn means the Roman Catholic church is antichristian to the core, it is the mother of "harlots", which means the manifold false sects and denominations posing as Christian movements, which the inspired word of God calls synagogues of Satan. These include every religious institution or movement regardless of distinguishing names which do not abide in the teaching of the Christ, 2John 9-11. Including the vast majority of so called Protestant religious bodies, if not all of them, as well as all apostate Baptist bodies, of which most do not regard themselves as "Protetant". It is not easy to find "the Faith" on earth today, like the Lord Christ hinted. Very few local assemblies today stand in the very teaching of the Christ, sadly so, yet true. A true assembly in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ, 1Thess.1:1, is not first and foremost known by its specific name, but is known by its doctrine and order and practice, one who abides in the teaching or doctrine of the Messias. This is a solemn thing to contemplate.
I pose one question> "Why did it take 400 years after the death of Jesus on the Cross for this doctrine to become the official orthodox doctrine of the Godhead. Even though in 325 at Nicea the idea was introduced and seemed to be accepted the Emperor Constantine later on turned away from this doctrine and embraced Arianism. It was not until the Council of Constantinople was this doctrine made the official doctrine concerning the Godhead.
Why would God hide the truth about his godhead and why do we say it is a mystery when the Apostle Paul says otherwise?
The answers are there in history and the Bible for those who care tyo look for them.
There are specific historical forces that caused investigation into the nature of God and the relationship of the Son to the Father and all that.
To say that God hid the Trintiy is misleading. The main elements of the Trinity, unity of persons, deity of each person, monotheism. are all very clear in scripture. The synthesising of these strands intoa coherent cord took time.
In a word, the doctrine developed.
But let's not be so silly as to think that this means that all developments since are based on such clear scriptural teaching as the Trinity. To say, for example, that the Ppapcy or Marioloatry, are developments of the same type as that of the Trinity would be to demonstrate remarkable ignorance. There is no way to look at the Assumption for example and say that there si the same kind of teaching to draw from in Scripture. Same goes for the Papacy.
As for why it is a mystery, it is. That's afact. We don;t understand it all. But that is not a contradiction of Paul. In Paul mysteries are things whcih have been revealed. Not things that have been understood. Sop basically we are talking about two uses of the word "mystery" at work here. Hrhema, I suggest that you not confuse them.
Some say that God as a three-one God is a mystery, no doubt. In a sense it may be said to be so, yet in another sense is not exactly true, because God has revealed His three-oneness in His word. His triunity is sufficiently revealed in the Bible so there should be no unclearness over the matter. Yet I venture to say no human being on earth understands or comprehends God's three-oneness perfectly as it really is in truth. A man may gain considerable learning respecting this doctrine and the truth about God's triunity, and still more if the Holy Spirit illuminates him/her. But I dare say that the saints in light understand it far better than the saints on earth, thus I claim no one on earth today understands it optimally, or, as much as is possible. The Bible has revealed God's triunity in such a sufficient measure that only man's depravity and impaired understanding springing from that depravity would make him pervert the doctrine of the three-one Godhead as e.g. Oneness Pentecostals clearly do. The Scriptures reveal the truth of God's triunity in such a fully sufficient manner that people need not resort to man made creeds like the ones mentioned above, albeit they may be well formulated and reflecting the very truth of inspired Scriptures. Such creeds may be helpful but they are not the final authority of doctrine and practice. The Holy Bible is.
1) God the Father---we can't fully understand Him (yet) because He is Spirit, we are human.
2) Jesus---is the physical manifestation of God
3) Holy Spirit---is the active force of God's will which we normally don't see, except through the works He performs.
No where in the Bible does it say that what a person believes in the Godhead is salvific.
If you read what I posted in the thread under other religions, "A Question to Oneness," you would understand where I am coming from.
The post apostolic fathers did not believe in the trinity as it is taught today. The majority of them taught that Jesus was created. Not before the Earth was created but in the beginning of time. Their reasoning was a Son cannot proceed a Father. Most did not believe the Holy Ghost as a person but the emanated poured out spirit of the Father. It took 400 years for the doctrine of the trinity to evolve. Sorry but that does not make sense to me.
What bothers me the most is the protestant churches criticize other doctrines created by the Roman Catholic church but jumps on this bandwagon. In Life magazine in 1961 the Roman Catholic Church in defending its doctrine concerning the worship of Mary said that what right does the Protestants have to criticize this belief when they accepted the Doctrine of the Trinity which is really not Biblical no more than the worship of mary is.
"No where in the Bible does it say that what a person believes in the Godhead is salvific."
I agree to a point. I don't thnk that yuour ability to express the hypostatic union or thenuances of the relationships of the three persons is a salvific issue. However some related issues are slavific. Jesus said, unless you believe that I am you willl indeed die in your sins. (Jn 8:24)
"What bothers me the most is the protestant churches criticize other doctrines created by the Roman Catholic church but jumps on this bandwagon."
They don't criticse other doctrines becuase they are Catholic, but becuase they aren't bblical. The Trintiy is very clearly biblical, and can be argued for without mentioning a council. Those other doctrines simply dio not compare to the doctrine of the Trinity.
I affirm both Chalcedon and Nicea as to their trinitarian teaching becuase they faithfully reflect apostolic truth, not because they are RC.
"In Life magazine in 1961 the Roman Catholic Church in defending its doctrine concerning the worship of Mary said that what right does the Protestants have to criticize this belief when they accepted the Doctrine of the Trinity which is really not Biblical no more than the worship of mary is."
I already answered this. It is a bad argument, too often repeated. The worship of Mary has nothing like the biblical support that the Trinity does. It is a false comparison.
How about this, I know it's simplistic, but it actually works pretty well for me.
God made me.
Jesus saved me.
The Holy Spirit sustains me.