Date: 4/3/2008

The Trinity Explained

The Trinity is the most misunderstood and misinterpreted belief in Christianity. I am going to do my best to explain the Trinity as it is described in the bible, which is the Word of God.

The Trinity, for those who do not know, is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Jesus mentions the Trinity in Matthew 28:19 when He said to His disciples: Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

There are many misconceptions about the Trinity especially in religions like Islam where the common thought is that Christians are serving 3 gods. I assure you, this is not the case. The Trinity is defined as one God who exists in 3 eternal, simultaneous and distinct persons known as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. They are not 3 gods, but one God. Each is a separate person, yet each of them is, in essence, divine in nature.This definition may suffice for some, but for others this explanation is insufficient. Therefor we will take a look at some analogies that may help you to understand the Trinity.

Before looking at the analogies, see Romans 1:20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. Notice that this verse says that God's attributes, power and nature can be clearly seen in creation. What does that mean? It means that we are able to learn about Gods attributes, power and nature by looking at what He has created. When a painter paints a picture, what is in him is reflected in the painting he produces. When a sculptor creates a work of art, it is from his heart and mind that the source of the sculpture is born. The creators of art leave their marks, something that is their own, something that reflects what they are. It is the same with God. God has left His fingerprints on His creation.

NOW LOOK AT THIS. The universe is comprised of 3 elements: TIME, SPACE and MATTER. Each of these is also comprised of 3 components.

Consider TIME. Time is past, present and future. There are 3 aspects or parts of time. The past is distinct from the present, which is distinct from the future. This does not mean that there are 3 times there is only 1 time. They all share the same nature: TIME.

Consider SPACE. Space is comprised of height, width and depth. Height is distinct from width, which is distinct from depth, which is distinct from height. They are simultaneous and separate. There are not 3 spaces, but 1 space. They all share the same nature: SPACE.

Consider MATTER. Matter is comprised of solid, liquid and gas. Solid is not the same as liquid, which is not the same as gas, which is not the same as solid. Yet they are not 3 matters, but 1 matter. They all share the same nature: MATTER.

In a similar way, the Trinity is 3 simultaneous, separate and distinct persons who share the same nature: GOD. ONE GOD.

Now some critiques of the doctrine of the Trinity say that the Trinity is 3 gods. They will say that God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit would make 3 gods. They will say God the Father + God the Son + God the Holy Spirit makes 3. But this is not a logical necessity. Instead of adding, why not multiply? 1 x 1 x 1 equals 1. Why should addition be the criteria by which the doctrine is judged? It need not be.

Let us look at TIME to illustrate the Trinity. Is the past + the present + the future a total of 3 times? Not at all. It is simply a representation of 3 distinct aspects of the nature of time: past, present and future. Likewise, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit are not 3 separate beings or entities, but 3 distinct persons in the one nature of the Godhead.

One more comment about Jesus. ALL cults deny that Jesus is God in the flesh. Various objections are raised saying that Jesus could not be God, otherwise He would be praying to Himself etc. etc. Lets work with the analogy above, and continue with TIME as our illustration: Let us take present and add to it human nature. Present, then, would have 2 natures: time and man. If present were truly human then he would be able to communicate with us, and we could see and touch him and he would tell us many things. But, because he is also time by nature, he would be able to tell us both the past and the future as he manifested the time nature within him. If present then, communicated with the past and the future, it would not mean that he was communicating with himself, but with the distinctions known as the past and the future.

Now take this analogy and substitute time with God, past with the Father, present with Jesus, and past with the Holy Spirit. Let us take Jesus, and add to Him human nature. Jesus, then, now has 2 natures: God and man. Jesus was truly human, so He was able to communicate with us, and we could see and touch Him and He told us many things. But, because He is also God by nature, He was also able to speak of the Father and the Holy Spirit as He manifested the God nature within Him. When Jesus, then, communicated with the Father and with the Holy Spirit, it did not mean that He was communicating with Himself, but with the distinctions known as the Father and the Holy Spirit.

I know that this is only an analogy. But I think it is a good, though basic, illustration of Gods nature as expressed in the doctrine of the Trinity. I pray this gives you a better understanding of the Trinity. I want to leave you with this scripture from Hebrews 1:3 He (Jesus) is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of His nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of His power. After making purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, Remember the words Jesus spoke in Revelation 1:8 I am the Alpha and the Omega, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.

Comments (5)