Monday, September 7, 2009
Knowing The Trinity
"Jesus also was baptized and while He prayed the heaven was opened and the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from heaven which said, “You are my beloved Son, in You I am well pleased." Luke 3:21-22
It has been said that if we try to fully understand the Trinity then we will lose our mind but if we don’t fully believe in it then we will lose our soul. We need to believe in and relate to what God has revealed of Himself by progressive revelation in the Bible. As we will see, He has revealed Himself as one God in three persons. It is through these three persons that we can have a personal relationship with God.
God’s unknowable essence is not blocking His personality from shining through. Rather, His personality is built upon His core essence and radiates out to humanity. He can be known and wants us to know Him in His three persons. We can clearly see His invisible Essence in and through His creation (Rom 1:20) but cannot partake in or relate with Him in this. We can, however, relate to all three of His persons, Father, Son and Holy Spirit - each fulfilling a unique relational role. We can partake in His holiness, righteousness, sovereignty, wisdom and love as we relate with all three, who are these attributes (God does not HAVE these attributes He IS these attributes- He is Holy, is Righteous is Love etc.)
Probably the best physical illustration for the Trinity is Water in that it exists in three states, liquid, ice and steam yet all are H2O. So Father, Son and Spirit are all GOD. However, the Trinity always exists and work together and not in isolation.
The picture of a fruitful tree is good in illustrating the WORK of the Trinity. The Father, as the root, begins all things - He is the man with the plan. The Son, as the shoot, arranges the Father's plan according to His pattern - Jesus is the pattern son and we are to be like Him. The Spirit, as the fruit, produces the desired effect in us, working powerfully in us to produce the Fruit of the Spirit (Christ likeness).
Father, Son and Holy Spirit are seen working together as separate persons who are each fully God. The most clear example of this is at the Baptism of Jesus. The Father speaks from heaven (He planned this event) over the Son (He is the pattern son, living the Father’s plan) and the Spirit descends as a dove onto Jesus (He empowers and anoints Jesus to produce the works He was called to walk in - Eph 2:10).
The Trinity gives us the basis for all Christian leadership (Parents to children, husband to wife, church leadership). They are all equal but submit to one another in a loving environment. The Father is treated as the first among equals. Jesus, though equally God, did nothing without the Father’s go ahead and the Spirit likewise responds to the will of the Son. The Spirit’s main ministry may be termed a “spotlight” ministry, where He lives to glorify the Son, Jesus.
Let us ask the Lord to reveal Himself to us in all His fullness, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Our God can be known as He is Three in One,
Father, Spirit and Jesus the Son.
He has always been three in loving community,
And He reaches out in love to you and to me.
"Father God, beautiful Jesus and sweet Spirit, show more of yourselves to me day by day. Let me enter into deeper relationship with each one of you. Take me deeper into You, the great three in one. Amen."