The booklet is non-denominational. It simply represents one person's honest attempt to eke out the original meaning of the Word of God on a variety of subjects, some seldom discussed. My opinions are clearly noted. It is impossible to write such a booklet as this without being controversial or possibly upsetting to some. My conscience is clear concerning my research and conclusions, but if this book would cause you to stumble in your faith, simply do not read it. I pray now that our God will continue to reveal Himself through His Word by any means He chooses, even if it is not through my work.
So now, let us continue. The word "Trinity" is not found in the Bible, but there is no doubt that there are three divine persons - the Father, His Son and the Holy Spirit. "For it is through Jesus that both the Jew and Gentile now have access by means of the One and Only Holy Spirit to the Father so that we are able to approach and have a personal relationship with Him. " The Bible also tells us these three persons are one deity, all sharing the same attributes, abilities and knowledge. Jesus the Christ is referred to as the Son, begotten of God. " But regarding the Son, the Father says, 'Your throne, O God, is forever and ever..."
By the fourth century, the theological concept was introduced explaining that the three persons consist of one common divine substance. Great minds have pondered this paradox for hundreds, if not thousands of years. Instead of an answer, I will offer a concept more easily grasped and based upon known scripture. God, the Trinity is, at the very least, one in purpose. It is not possible for any person of the Deity to lie or be unfaithful to the plan that they together ordained before the foundation of the world. Each divine person fulfills a specific role in bringing God's purpose to pass.
For example, the Trinity created all that exists. From Genesis 1:1 and 26 to Revelation 4:11, we find proof that the Father, Son and Spirit collectively brought into being all that is. "...the Father created the heavens and earth and ages through (Gr. by means of; the channel by which an act is performed) His Son." "And furthermore, the Father said of His Son, 'You, Lord, did lay the foundation of salvation of all in the beginning of time, and eternal life is the work of your power." "Every single thing made came into existence through Him (Jesus)..." "Yet for us there is only one God, the Father...in whom we have life. And there is one Lord, Jesus Christ, through and by whom all things exist, including ourselves." "For it was in Him (Jesus) that all things have been created...through and for Him. In Him all things are held together."
The phrase in these verses, "All things exist through Him" is a little hard to understand. The Father and Son have co- created all by the power of the Holy Spirit. Christ was the initial impetus for creation and is the source of life so all things can continue to exist, to depend on and serve Him. They were made for His pleasure and glory.
We know the heavenly Father was neither born into existence nor proceeded out from any occurrence. John wrote that in the eternal realm before time, as we understand it. the divine Christ was already pre-existent with His Father. Both claim to be the Eternal First and Last. "And Jesus existed before all things were created..." Jesus Christ is also referred to as the Word of God, because He is the living, invisible revelation to the human race of Who God is, and within Christ is the fullness and consummation of God's purpose. Trinitarians certainly assume the Holy Spirit has also been present since then, for the three are one.
As far as the dynamics of the interrelation-ship of the Trinity, the unified Godhead is the Source of all things and life. Before Jesus came in the flesh, the Trinity was purely and only spirit. (John 1:1, etc.) The divine Christ Jesus is Heir to all things. The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, but is a divine person unto Himself. Simply stated, whatever God (collectively) does, it is the Father that declares it and performs it for the benefit and to the glory of His Son, by means of the Holy Spirit.
There are some who get upset at the mention of Christ being inferior in any way to the Father. This comes from a lack of understanding of Jesus' dual natures. In the scriptures, we read that Jesus rejected being called "good master'". He explained, "There is none good but God the Father alone." What He meant was, in His flesh, He had not yet been perfected through His completed obedience to the cross, and on to resurrection. The Father anointed and glorified Jesus the man. And Jesus the man pleased, obeyed and committed His spirit to the Father. Until that time, Jesus, in the flesh had power over earthly elements. But it was not until after His glorification that the Father gave him authority and power in heaven and earth (Matt 28:18).
Yet in First Colossians 11:3, years after Jesus' ascension, Paul wrote, "...and the Head of Christ is God the Father." Furthermore, Revelation 1:6 refers to the God as Jesus' Father. We know Christ Jesus sits highly exalted in glory and majesty upon the heavenly throne with His Father while interceding for us. At His return every knee will bow before Him, confessing and acknowledging Him as their Lord and Master. His earthly kingdom will then be established, until the Father will put all Christ's enemies under His feet (the last being Death and Hell). When the time of His authority is finished, after He judges the dead and the new heavens and earth are created, Christ will subject Himself (not His attributes, but rather end His office as Mediator and worldly king) to His Father, so God may reign eternally supreme in every aspect, with His faithful Son sharing His throne. This will no longer be a throne of judgment, but a throne of praise, holiness and glory. "And His servants will worship God, and they will see His face, and His name will be in their foreheads." There is no distinction made as to who "Him" is referring to, so we can only imagine it is speaking of the absolute spirit oneness of God the Trinity, for none have yet seen His face (Exodus 33:20: Revelation 22:4)
I must interject an important note: Every time the word "God" or "Christ" appears in your Bible, it can have one of many definitions, such as "Almighty", "Creator", "Giver of Grace", "Master", "Savior", etc. Find a good study Bible or web site that will call out these differences. These titles of God and Christ can clarify a lot of scriptures. They usually describe one divine person's relationship to another person of the Trinity or their rela-tionship to humankind.
Complications arise when a divine Person (with the preceding article "the") is confused with the gifts they bestow (with no preceding article "the") The divine Person with the article is typically considered the Giver, while the divine Person without the article is considered the gift. This difference is important to note, but in virtually every modern Bible translation, no distinction is made between the two (fifty-two instances in the New Testament). This is especially true in the case of whether the Bible is speaking of the Holy Spirit - the divine Person, or the gifts He bestows upon us (pneuma hagion). A good example of the difference between these usages is found in The Acts 2:4, "And they were all filled with (the gift of) the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them utterance. "Here the gift was speaking in foreign tongues as given by the divine Person of the Holy Spirit.
Further confusion arises when we read the titles "Spirit of God" and "Spirit of Christ". In the Old and New Testaments, "the Spirit of God" occurs numerous times, while in the New Testament "the Spirit of Christ” appears only a few times. The Spirit of God is the power on high by which His will is accomplished. This is true from Genesis to Revelation. The Spirit of Christ specifically refers to the Holy Spirit as the new nature within us. In John 3:6 we read, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Holy Spirit is spirit (the Spirit of Christ - the new nature given us by faith in His resurrection).
There are other instances in which the Holy Spirit is not the Giver. For example, in some scriptures, the Holy Spirit means the divine Person, but the Greek still reads pneuma hagion; thegift of the Holy Spirit. This is because the gift of the Person of the Holy Spirit has been given to us through Christ the Giver.