Pamela Christian – Tuesday, February 17, 2015
God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit… How can Christianity claim to believe in One God?
The God that Christian’s worship is revealed in Scripture as a trinity of distinct persons. This understanding about God, as revealed in the Christian Bible, is unique to Christianity, and woefully misunderstood by many people groups.
Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that God is one person, the Father, with Jesus as a creation and the Holy Spirit a force or power. Mormon’s believe that the Trinity is an office held by three separate Gods. Others believe that God is one person who took three consecutive forms, i.e., the Father became the Son who became the Holy Spirit. But none of these views can be supported by Scripture.
Scripture makes it clear that God is One being with three distinct persons. Person is the correct way to consider the distinctions of the Godhead. A person is self-aware, speaks for himself and is distinct from other persons. Each person has unique qualities and abilities. The work of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are unique to each one, however, they are in absolute perfect harmony, consisting of one substance with the identical focus–meaning the same center of interest and activity. They are co-equal, co-powerful and co-eternal. They are three in One. An analogy is the three aspects of time: past, present and future. Each is an aspect of the one thing known as time.
An example of the distinction in function for each of the persons of the Godhead is found in Ephesians. The Father reveals who will be saved (Eph 1:4); the Son redeems them (Eph 1:7); and the Holy Spirit seals them, (Eph 1:13). Each person of the Godhead displays different power and abilities, yet they function in unity, as one because God is One.
Scriptures reveal that God is gentle, longsuffering, forgiving, faithful and more. God is Omniscient (knows all things-possesses perfect knowledge); Omnipotent (all powerful-there is no power greater than His), Omnipresent (everywhere present simultaneously), Eternal (with infinite duration without any beginning or end), Immutable (He is the same forever and cannot change), Holy (perfect and pure in every way), Righteous and Just (morally perfect and always acting according to what is righteous), Merciful and Kind (forgiving, compassionate and sympathetic) and God is Love (perfect love). All the attributes of God are common to all persons of the triune God.
Isaiah 43:10; 44:6, 8; 45:5, 14, 18, 21, 22; 46:9; 47:8; John 17:3; 1 Cor. 8:5-6; and Gal. 4:8-9 all make it clear that God is One. While the term trinity or triune God is not found in Scripture, the concept or substance of the doctrine runs through the books from Genesis to Revelation. God refers to himself in the multiple, “Let us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness… (Genesis 1:26 NKJ)
The word trinity is composed of tri, which means three and unity meaning one providing yet another way to understand that the Christian God is three in One.
Speaking to the faithful in Israel, God declared:
“You are my witnesses,” says the Lord, “And My servant whom I have chosen, that you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me. I, even I, am the Lord and besides Me there is no savior.” (Isaiah 43:10-11 NKJ)
For more study on this I recommend the Blue Letter Bible Institutes online article.
Future posts will discuss the person of the Holy Spirit.
Let me hear from you. Please leave your comments or questions that I may connect and serve you better.