Q. Can you explain “The Trinity” to me?
A. Short answer: No! But I can tell you what we mean by “The Trinity”. I can’t state the Bible’s teaching about God better than our Shorter Catechism does:
Q 5: Are there more Gods than one?
A: There is but one only, the living and true God.
Q.6: How many persons are there in the Godhead?
A. There are three persons in the Godhead: The Father, the Son, and the Holy
Spirit. And these three are one God, the same in substance, equal in power and
The Trinity is a great mystery, but we cannot understand the Bible either accurately or
honestly if we don’t believe and confess this glorious truth: The Father is God. The Son (who
took flesh and whom we know now as the Lord Jesus Christ) is God. And the Holy Spirit is God.
This is taught in various ways in the Bible:
• In Matthew 28:19, the baptismal formula (by which those baptized have the name of God put
upon them - they are marked out as His) is “baptize them into the Name (note the singular) of
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” This clearly teaches the doctrine of the Trinity.
• When we pray to God, we begin by saying, “Our Father in heaven….” (Matt. 6:9), indicating
that the Father is God.
• Jesus says “He who has seen me has seen the Father” (Jn. 14:9) While the Son is NOT the
Father, because they are “the same in substance, equal in power and glory”, Jesus, the Son
of God, can make this very true statement.
• In Acts 5:3,4, lying to God is the same as lying to the Holy Spirit - because the Holy Spirit is
God. (And it’s important not to speak of the Holy Spirit as an impersonal force, e.g. “The force
be with you.” Especially in John 14:15-31, Jesus speaks of the Holy Spirit as a person, e.g. a
Helper, the Spirit of truth.
• The benediction with which we go forth at the end of worship is a blessing from God - God
who is Trinity. “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God the Father, and the
communion/fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you.” (II Cor. 13:14, etc.)
These three Persons aren’t three sides of a triangle (the way “Onenenss Pentecostals”
and others teach). And they aren’t three gods (as Jehovah’s Witnesses, Muslims and others
claim of Christian teaching). The Trinity means that God is three distinct persons but still one
How can that be? Isn’t that a contradiction? We’ll address those questions next week.
Meanwhile: Delight in the true and living God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!