One of the most unique things in the biblical revelation of God is His “three-in-one” nature. The doctrine of the Trinity sets our God apart from every other view of what God may be like. But then, it’s really confusing too. Fortunately, like all teachings of scripture, God’s “triune” nature isn’t revealed just to confuse us, but to help us know Him better. Since it’s who He really is, studying, pondering, and worshipping God as Trinity will lead to a deepening ability to relate to Him and know Him.
So for today, here’s two (very) different ways to start to think about this. The first one is a little bit of a mind-bender, and it’s also off the beaten track. It’s an article by Jonothan Edwards exploring his view of how the Trinity works. His basic idea is that God, from all eternity, has always had an idea of Himself which is such a perfect representation on who He is that it (He) exists as a separate person of the Godhead (God the Son), and there flows between them a love which carries so much of who God is that it (He) also exists as a separate person in the Godhead (God the Spirit). It sounds really weird at first, but then, the more you think about it, there’s a lot of verses this makes sense of. You don’t have to a gree with it at all, but it makes for reverent, thoughtful reading. Here’s an excerpt:
…this I suppose to be that blessed Trinity that we read of in the Holy Scriptures. The Father is the Deity subsisting in the prime, un-originated and most absolute manner, or the Deity in its direct existence. The Son is the Deity generated by God’s understanding, or having an idea of Himself and subsisting in that idea. The Holy Ghost is the Deity subsisting in act, or the Divine essence flowing out and breathed forth in God’s Infinite love to and delight in Himself. And I believe the whole Divine essence does truly and distinctly subsist both in the Divine idea and Divine love, and that each of them are properly distinct Persons.
Get the whole article to read here.
Second, here’s an infographic on the Trinity. (Click here to download the full size graphic.)