Catechism Mondays: Week 3

Q: How many persons are there in God?

A: There are three persons in the one true and living God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. They are the same in substance, equal in power and glory. 

“The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” 2 Corinthians 13:14

The doctrine of the Triune God is probably one of the most confusing Christian doctrines. Yet, it is one of the most important. If God is not three in one, many other things start to break down quickly. If Jesus was not God the Son, who was he? If we do not have the Holy Spirit convicting and guiding us, how are we to navigate the Christian life? If we do not have God the Father, how did we get here? But… how do we comprehend that there is one God, but he is three in one?

Many have tried, and failed, to present the Trinity in a succinct way that breaks it down perfectly. Analogies should be avoided, as they all create a heresy of one kind or another. It must be clear that the Trinity is comprised of three distinct persons in one essence: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. None were created. All are equal. Each member of the Trinity is completely and totally God. And they are all one. We cannot divide them or ignore any of them. It is a doctrine that will never be full comprehended by our mortal, finite minds. God is infinite, with no beginning and no end, and thus there are countless things about him that we will never completely understand. His triune nature is one of them. We must strive to understand it as best as we can, and accept what we cannot understand in faith.

And we can watch helpful (and funny) videos that explain why analogies are a terrible way to explain the Trinity. 🙂

Catechism question and answer taken from The New City Catechism by Tim Keller. This week’s question, answer, and verse can be found on pages 20-21 of The New City Catechism.
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