The Trinity: Where or How far can we agree?

'The Trinity' seems, at least to me, to be a very popular discussion topic and maybe one of contention on both these forums and the previous now defunct forums.

I think that no matter what side of the issue of the Trinity ideology/theology we on these forums can at least agree on the following:

(1) The word/term Trinity is never once used in Scripture.

(2) No synonym or analogous word/term with a meaning like or similar to Trinity is used or to be found in Scripture.

(3) No, clear and detailed ontological explanation of the theology Trinity that resembles what we find in the later creeds of the Catholic Church/Orthodox Church nor in the confessions/theologies of the protestant Church is to be found in Scripture.

What do you think? Can or Do will all agree with the above? Or, is the above wrong or misleading? Please explain why and provided detail and scripture support.

Comments

  • Bill_ColeyBill_Coley Posts: 1,775

    @Mitchell said:

    What do you think? Can or Do will all agree with the above? Or, is the above wrong or misleading? Please explain why and provided detail and scripture support.

    I agree with all three of your statements, Brian. Thanks for offering them.

  • Dave_LDave_L Posts: 2,328

    the doctrine of the Trinity can be summarized in seven statements. (1) There is only one God. (2) The Father is God. (3) The Son is God. (4) The Holy Spirit is God. (5) The Father is not the Son. (6) The Son is the not the Holy Spirit. (7) The Holy Spirit is not the Father.


    The Athanasian Creed puts it this way: “Now this is the catholic [universal] faith: That we worship one God in trinity and the trinity in unity, neither blending their persons, nor dividing their essence. For the person of the Father is a distinct person, the person of the Son is another, and that of the Holy Spirit, still another. But the divinity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is one, their glory equal, their majesty coeternal.”


    Orthodox Trinitarianism rejects monarchianism which believes in only one person (mono) and maintains that the Son and the Spirit subsists in the divine essence as impersonal attributes not distinct and divine Persons.


    Orthodox Trinitarianism rejects modalism which believes that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are different names for the same God acting in different roles or manifestations (like the well-intentioned but misguided “water, vapor, ice” analogy).


    Orthodox Trinitarianism rejects Arianism which denies the full deity of Christ.


    And finally, orthodox Trinitarianism rejects all forms of tri-theism, which teach that the three members of the Godhead are, to quote a leading Mormon apologist, “three distinct Beings, three separate Gods.”

  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 2,099

    @Mitchell ... I would agree with your points (1) and (2). Your point (3) seems to say the opposite of (1) and (2)

    (3) No, clear and detailed ontological explanation of the theology Trinity that resembles what we find in the later creeds of the Catholic Church/Orthodox Church nor in the confessions/theologies of the protestant Church is to be found in Scripture.

    The sense of the statement depends on the "," behind the first word "No" in the paragraph. .... this comma changes the rest of the meaning of the sentence ...without ",", the rest states that "no clear ... explanation ... is to be found in Scripture", but with ",", the rest states "clear ...explanation ... is to be found in Scripture"

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 489
    edited February 19

    (1) I would like to thank everyone who replied so far.

    (2) To Wolfgang: thank you very much for grammatically checking my statement. Allow me to clarify: The Statement (3)'s intended meaning was that in Scripture one does not and can not find any detailed explanation of the Trinity. One only finds such in the Creeds, Confessions, Theologies, and so on, but not in Scripture.

    You have a point a point about the comma, and what you explained would be the case if my statement was actually a reply to someone or part of an already on going dialogue with someone in which I was reacting toward someone In this case it was not a reply to anyone but a statement. The comma was a mistake or slip on my part and causes my statement to be misleading. Thank you for catching that and commenting on that.

    (3) Thank you Dave L: Your referral to the Athanasian Creed and to personal theological formals supports statement three on the OP.

    (4) You are very welcomed Bill Coley


    Grace and Peace 2/20/2019 7:43 AM/(GMT+9)

    Post edited by Mitchell on
  • WolfgangWolfgang Posts: 2,099

    @Mitchell wrote

    (2) To Wolfgang: thank you very much for grammatically checking my statement. Allow me to clarify: The Statement (3)'s intended meaning was that in Scripture one does not and can not find any detailed explanation of the Trinity. One only finds such in the Creeds, Confessions, Theologies, and so on, but not in Scripture.

    You have a point a point about the comma, and what you explained would be the case if my statement was actually a reply to someone or part of an already on going dialogue with someone in which I was reacting toward someone In this case it was not a reply to anyone but a statement. The comma was a mistake or slip on my part and causes my statement to be misleading. Thank you for catching that and commenting on that.

    What I explained came from the thought of reading on from points (1) and (2), so that the "no, ...." seemed to state a contrast to those points ...

    Thank you for the clarification ... thus, I can add that I would agree not only to (1) and (2) but also with your point (3).

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 489

    AH, thank you very much Wolfgang!

    The comma was a mistake on my part and it does indeed change the meaning and/or cause the statement to be misleading. From now on I am going to check more carefully before posting.


    So, I guess I should give my answer:

    I agree with statements (1) and (2) as written and I agree with statement (3) without the comma and with the corrections.

  • reformedreformed Posts: 2,572

    I agree with 1 and 2. I agree with 3 if it were changed to say no single passage.

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 489

    Thank you for commenting and providing input! This is a very helpful and nuanced point/distinction that had not occured to me.

  • C_M_C_M_ Posts: 3,230

    Agreeing with what is NOT (the three points in the OP, without the comma in the third statement) is little comfort to the student of the Word. What does the Bible teaches on the Trinity? What do we agree on, what is? Where do we go from here? CM

  • MitchellMitchell Posts: 489


    Greetings CM,


    I think it is simply better to start with:

    " What does the Biblical literature teach?" or since ''GOD/LORD" is clear mentioned in Biblical literature one might start with:

    "What can we learn directly from Scripture about the character/nature of God?


    However the OP did not start with that question because the purpose of this thread was to find out how far we can agree as a base and start for future conversation.

    By the way CM in all due respect this thread was never intended for the sake of comforting the student of the word(and seek of truth/facts), for the true student of the word should not be so weak that he/she is troubled by other peoples opinions nor for that matter the facts. Rather the true student should work/study in order to be ready in and out of season to give an account of the hope he/she has and to be ready to right divide divide the word of truth. Do not be afraid CM for nothing on this thread has the power to destory anyone's faith!


    Grace and Peace

Sign In or Register to comment.