Trinity Biography & Facts
The Christian doctrine of the Trinity (Latin: Trinitas, lit. 'triad', from Latin: trinus 'threefold') defines one God existing in three coequal, coeternal, consubstantial divine persons: God the Father, God the Son (Jesus Christ) and God the Holy Spirit, three distinct persons sharing one homoousion (essence). In this context, the three persons define who God is, while the one essence defines what God is.This doctrine is called Trinitarianism and its adherents are called trinitarians, while its opponents are called antitrinitarians or nontrinitarians. Christian nontrinitarian positions include Unitarianism, Binitarianism and Modalism.
While the developed doctrine of the Trinity is not explicit in the books that constitute the New Testament, the New Testament possesses a triadic understanding of God and contains a number of Trinitarian formulas.
The doctrine of the Trinity was first formulated among the early Christians and fathers of the Church as they attempted to understand the relationship between Jesus and God in their scriptural documents and prior traditions.
The Old Testament has been interpreted as referring to the Trinity in many places. One of these is the prophecy about the Messiah in Isaiah 9. The Messiah is called "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." Some see this verse as meaning the Messiah will represent the Trinity on earth. This is because Counselor is a title for the Holy Spirit (John 14:26), the Trinity is God, Father is a title for God the Father, and Prince of Peace is a title for Jesus. This verse is also used to support the Deity of Christ.Another verse used to support the Deity of Christ is
“I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him. And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed.
Daniel 7:13-14 ESV
This is because both the Ancient of Days (God the Father) and the Son of Man (Jesus, Matt 16:13) have an everlasting dominion, which is ascribed to God in Psalm 145:13.Some also see
“Then the Lord rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from the Lord out of heaven.
Genesis 19:24 ESV
as Trinitarian since they think it is saying the Lord in heaven is different from the Lord on earth.People also see the Trinity when the OT refers to
God's word (Psalm 33:6), his spirit (Isaiah 61:1), and Wisdom (Proverbs 9:1), as well as narratives such as the appearance of the three men to Abraham. However, it is generally agreed among Trinitarian Christian scholars that it would go beyond the intention and spirit of the Old Testament to correlate these notions directly with later Trinitarian doctrine.Some Church Fathers believed that a knowledge of the mystery was granted to the prophets and saints of the Old Testament, and that they identified the divine messenger of Genesis 16:7, Genesis 21:17, Genesis 31:11, Exodus 3:2 and Wisdom of the sapiential books with the Son, and "the spirit of the Lord" with the Holy Spirit. Other Church Fathers, such as Gregory Nazianzen, argued in his Orations that the revelation was gradual, claiming that the Father was proclaimed in the Old Testament openly, but the Son only obscurely, because "it was not safe, when the Godhead of the Father was not yet acknowledged, plainly to proclaim the Son".Genesis 18–19 has been interpreted by Christians as a Trinitarian text. The narrative has the Lord appearing to Abraham, who was visited by three men. In Genesis 19, "the two angels" visited Lot at Sodom. The interplay between Abraham on the one hand and the Lord/three men/the two angels on the other was an intriguing text for those who believed in a single God in three persons. Justin Martyr, and John Calvin similarly, interpreted it such that Abraham was visited by God, who was accompanied by two angels. Justin supposed that the God who visited Abraham was distinguishable from the God who remains in the heavens, but was nevertheless identified as the (monotheistic) God. Justin interpreted the God who visited Abraham as Jesus, the second person of the Trinity.
Augustine, in contrast, held that the three visitors to Abraham were the three persons of the Trinity. He saw no indication that the visitors were unequal, as would be the case in Justin's reading. Then in Genesis 19, two of the visitors were addressed by Lot in the singular: "Lot said to them, 'Not so, my lord'" (Gen. 19:18). Augustine saw that Lot could address them as one because they had a single substance, despite the plurality of persons.Some Christians interpret the theophanies, or appearances of the Angel of the Lord, as revelations of a person distinct from God, who is nonetheless called God. This interpretation is found in Christianity as early as Justin Martyr and Melito of Sardis, and reflects ideas that were already present in Philo. The Old Testament theophanies were thus seen as Christophanies, each a "preincarnate appearance of the Messiah".
The New Testament
While the developed doctrine of the Trinity is not explicit in the books that constitute the New Testament, the New Testament contains a number of Trinitarian formulas, including Matthew 28:19, 2 Corinthians 13:14, 1 Corinthians 12:4–5, Ephesians 4:4–6, 1 Peter 1:2, and Revelation 1:4–5. Reflection by early Christians on passages such as the Great Commission: "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" and Paul the Apostle's blessing: "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all", leading theologians across history in attempting to articulate the relationship between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Eventually, the diverse references to God, Jesus, and the Spirit found in the New Testament were brought together to form the doctrine of the Trinity—one Godhead subsisting in three persons and one substance. The doctrine of the Trinity was used to oppose alternative views of how the three are related and to defend the church against charges of worshiping two or three gods.
1 John 5:7–8
Modern Biblical scholarship largely agrees that 1 John 5:7 seen in Latin and Greek texts after the 4th century and found in later translations such as the King James Translation, cannot be found in the oldest Greek and Latin texts. Verse 7 is known as the Johannine Comma, which most scholars agree to be a later addition by a later copyist or what is termed a textual gloss and not part of the original text. This verse reads:
Because there are three in Heaven that testify – the Father, the Word and the Holy Spirit – and these three are one.
This verse is absent from the Ethiopic, Aramaic, Syriac, Slavic, Ar.... Discover the Trinity popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Trinity books.