The Doctrine of the Trinity in Three Words and Ten Letters

 OVER, IN, WITH

 Overwithin

 OVER, WITH, IN

The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible: and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible.

trinity

 To many the Christian Doctrine of the Trinity  with God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit is simply gobblydegook. no better expression is this extract from the Athanasian Creed, which was written 100 years after Athanasius died in southern France. Athanasius was one of the makers of the Nicene Creed a 100 years earlier.  Until 50 years ago it was expected to be read at Matins in Anglican Churches and I had great fun reading out a bit in my Trinity Sunday sermon today.

Here is an extract

 That we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity;

Neither confounding the Persons: nor dividing the Substance.

For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son: and another of the Holy Ghost.

But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one: the Glory equal, the Majesty co-eternal.

Such as the Father is, such is the Son: and such is the Holy Ghost.

The Father uncreate, the Son uncreate: and the Holy Ghost uncreate.

The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible: and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible.

The Father eternal, the Son eternal: and the Holy Ghost eternal.

And yet they are not three eternals: but one eternal.

As also there are not three incomprehensibles, nor three uncreated: but one uncreated, and one incomprehensible.

So likewise the Father is Almighty, the Son Almighty: and the Holy Ghost Almighty.

And yet they are not three Almighties: but one Almighty.

So the Father is God, the Son is God: and the Holy Ghost is God.

And yet they are not three Gods: but one God.

So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord: and the Holy Ghost Lord.

And yet not three Lords: but one Lord.

My favourite line is; –

The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible: and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible.

Frankly, this helps no one and makes all Christian doctrine and belief seem absurd. Having taken the mickey out of these ancient theologians, I took a simpler approach and dealt with the Trinity in 3 words and 10 letters

OVER

WITH

IN

We start with God OVER us as creator and Father

and then move to God WITH us, or if you prefer it in Aramaic Emmanuel. As in Jesus we have God in human form who wandered around Palestine for some 30 years. Here is God with us.

And thirdly, move to God IN us, the Holy Spirit who was sent by the Father (and the Son) on the first day of Pentecost to be IN us as Christians leading and guiding us.

All this is very brief and clearly needs expanding, but it gives a good and simple framework for understanding God as Trinity.

trinity1

Trinity Sunday 2015

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