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The Holy Trinity in Christianity
The Holy Trinity in Christianity: Hub Introduction/Rules
What exactly is this Hub's purpose?
To begin, what isn't its purpose.....
This hub is NOT meant to act as a platform for evangilization, it is simply a platform for education.
This hub is NOT meant to espouse any particular denomination of Christianity, in fact, interdenominational dialogue is encouraged.
This hub is NOT a place to demean other religions, for I firmly believe ALL religions point to some form of ultimate truth. We simply have a difference of opinion on what form said truth assumes.
NO hateful or vindictive comments will be accepted. Please be courteous and respectful of all opinions.
The Holy Trinity is one of the most beautiful yet all too often misunderstood conceptions of Christianity. Indeed, trying to fully understand the wonders of God, including conceiving completely the notion of the Holy Trinity, would be a less than fruitful endeavor, for only God himself knows his true purposes. Nevertheless, it is vital that Christian believers come to a fuller understanding of Trinitarian Theology, for such an understanding will illuminate many beautiful realities present in the Christian tradition. This hub is simply one believer's humble effort to immerse himself in this journey of discussion and discovery.
The Holy Trinity- Three Persons, One God
God is great! Look around you.....all you see, every flowing stream, flowering meadow, scintillating sunset.....it is all God's majestic work. It is all a part of his wondrous act of Creation, an act by which he, our God, breathed into our very being, giving us life in his image. When we ponder God's act of Creation, we often get an image of a single, powerful being.....a being who is omnipotent and all-knowing, a being who is atemportal, and a being who is immeasurably powerful. Indeed, our conceptions are accurate! God is a Supreme Being. He is Alpha and Omega. Yet, how do we reconcile such an understanding of a single, ever-present God with an understanding of Trinity? It would seem implausible if not downright impossible.....
Before proceeding, it is important to note.....Christianity is indeed a monotheistic religion.....despite the claims of those who would which to equate a notion of the Holy Trinity with a form of Polytheism, namely a belief in three separate Gods. However, it is not readily apparent how this is so.....and hence, this section's primary point: How can one God be three Persons and still remain only one God?
To begin.....set aside all your conceptions of time and space. Our human, bounded notions of such concepts are not applicable to God, for he exists outside of such ideas. God is both atemporal and aspatial. Phrased technically, an Infinite Qualitative Difference exists between God and Man, and as such, he cannot be bound up or parced out according to our human conceptions of time and space. It simply isn't possible. He is just too awesome, too majestic, too wondrous!
This being said, a few key concepts will help illuminate how such a conception of God as Trinitarian might be possible, without violating the bounds of Monotheism. The ancient Greeks developed a concept known as Substance Theory. This idea is quite difficult to explain; however, an analogy might serve us well here. Take a piece of firewood. Say it is burned, and transitions into ash. Does our ash replace our firewood? According to Substance Theory, it does not; rather, a certain substance remains unchanged despite this transition. As such, our firewood and our ash are both of one substance, a substance which exists outside of both spatial and temporal constraints. Another word, which can be used in approximately the same context, is Ousia. Ousia tends to denote some 'substance' or 'essence', which is immutable and perpetually has a sense of 'being' or existence.
Another important term is Hypostasis, which simply refers to the existence of a particular thing. Said particulars may well remain part of a broader being or Ousia; however, each is unique. These hypostases each retain the attributes of the one Ousia of which they are a part.
Now, turning to the Holy Trinity more specifically. God- Alpha and Omega- Beginning and End- is one immeasurable, inseparable Ousia. He is all-powerful and all-knowing. Within this Ousia, three Persons exist, three hypostases- Father, Son, and Holy Spirit- each of which retains the omnipotence of the one Ousia. The Father, Son, and Spirit are not each other; yet, the Father, Son, and Spirit.....each is God in all his Glory. Each exists in relation to the other. In other words, the Father's 'fatherhood' exists in relation to the Son and the Son's 'sonship' exists in relation to the Father. The Spirit's 'spiritness' exists in communion with Father and Son. Yet, each is fully and wholly God.....and God is great indeed!
Prayer of the Month
The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
God in Nature- Video of the Month
Poll of the Month
What Faith Tradition to you adhere to?
- The God Revealed in Jesus Christ | Grace Communion International
A nice, simple introduction to Trinitarian Theology.
- The Spirit in Trinitarian Theology
The Holy Spirit in Trinitarian Theology.