Before we get started, let me warn you: today is not for the lazy Bible student—but I promise: if you read attentively you will understand more about the Trinity than you ever did before.
The trinity is one of the most important doctrines in the Bible. Even though the word “trinity” is not in the Bible, the concept is confirmed.
Trinity means “tri-unity” or “three-in-one.” And more than 70 passages in the New Testament present the Father, Son, and Spirit together.
The doctrine teaches that God exists as three persons—Father, Son, and Spirit. Each person is fully and eternally God, yet there is only one God.
The mystery of the Trinity is this: 3 divine persons dwell together (forever) in deep relationship as one God.
But today, this doctrine is under attack…
Many “anti-christ forerunners” (that push the inter-faith movement), are seeking to blend all religions into one faith…
… but the effort is really foolish, if not impossible. Because Monotheistic religions (like Islam and Judaism) are aggressively opposed to embrace a God in three persons (as all Christians do).
Trinity Heroes and Heresy Wars
There were two “trinity” heroes among the early fathers…
- Athanasius (293-373 AD), Bishop of Alexandria, suffered great resistance and persecution defending the doctrines of the Trinity against Arian attacks.
- Augustine (354-430 AD), Bishop of Hippo (present-day Algeria) whose teaching on the Trinity is the most influential in history.
- The Athanasian Creed (about 500 AD) is the clearest statement of faith about the Trinity, explaining that each person of the Godhead is uncreated, limitless, eternal, almighty, coeternal and equal.
Here’s the creed:
- “We worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in unity; neither confounding the persons; nor dividing the essence. For there is one person of the Father; another of the Son; and another of the Spirit; but the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Spirit, is all one; the glory equal; the majesty coeternal.”
The Arian heresy: Arius, Presbyter of Alexandria, taught that Jesus was created by the Father and was therefore not God. But the Council of Nicea (325 AD) declared his doctrine to be a heresy.
The Arian heresy still shines today—many speak of Jesus as a great prophet, who is empowered by God, but not as the eternal God.
A.W. Tozer explains:
- “Our sincerest effort to grasp the incomprehensible mystery of the Trinity must remain forever futile… some persons (who reject ALL they cannot explain) have denied that God is a Trinity. Subjecting the Most High to their cold, level-eyed scrutiny, they conclude that it is impossible that He could be both One and Three. These forget that their whole life is enshrouded in mystery. They fail to consider that any real explanation of the simplest phenomenon in nature lies hidden in obscurity and can no more be explained than can the mystery of the God head.”
Proof of the Trinity in the OLD Testament
The first time God speaks in Scripture (and at other times), He uses the plural—Us and Our—(Gen. 1:26; 3:22; 11:7; Isa. 6:8).
God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness…” (Gen. 1:26)
In several places in the Old Testament, God addresses God (Ps. 2:7-12; 45:6-7; 110:1; Isa. 6:8).
In Psalm 45:6, the Father speaks to Jesus (quoted in Heb. 1:8). Your throne, O God, is forever… therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions. (Ps. 45:6-7)
In Psalm 110:1, David wrote,
- ”The Lord says to my lord: “Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”
Jesus used David’s words (Mt. 22:41-46) to explain He was the God-Man. Because David referred to two distinct persons as Lord, therefore, as only God could say to God, “Sit at my right hand”.
Proof of the Trinity in the NEW Testament
There are several New Testament examples of all three persons of the Godhead active or speaking at one event.
During Jesus’ baptism, the Spirit rested on Him and the Father spoke over Him (Mt. 3:16-17); and when Jesus commissioned His disciples He said:
Make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Mt. 28:19)
Also, Jesus declared some very controversial things about himself:
- “I and My Father are one.” Then the Jews took up stones again to stone Him…The Jews answered Him, “…For blasphemy, and because You…make Yourself God.” (Jn. 10:30-33) The Jews sought all the more to kill Him because He…said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God. (Jn. 5:18)
The doctrine of the Trinity is established by the deity of Jesus and the plurality of the Godhead…
Both truths are great stumbling blocks and sources of conflict… but essential to Christianity.
For further research, read Scriptures about Jesus’ deity here:
Mt. 1:23; 3:3 [Isa. 40:3]; 18:20; 22:44 [Ps. 110:1]; 26:64-65 [Dan. 7:13-14]; 28:20; Mk. 1:1; Lk. 1:35; Jn. 1:1-3, 14, 18; 4:26; 5:18; 8:58; 10:30-33; 14:9; 20:28; Rom. 9:5; 2 Cor. 4:4-6; Phil. 2:6-11; Col. 1:15-19; 2:9; 1 Tim. 3:16; Titus 2:13; Heb. 1:2-3, 8-12; 2 Pet. 1:1; 1 Jn. 2:23; 4:15; Rev. 5:12-13; 19:16; 21:6; 22:13