Christian Biblical Counsel: TRINITY, THE

Background

The Christian believes in the Trinity: that God is one, yet is three distinct persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Each person of the Trinity is independent, but never acts independently. Each is a distinct person, but those three persons are one in purpose, in essence, and in nature. The finite mind finds it difficult to comprehend this mystery; it must be accepted by faith: “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6, NIV).

The Apostles’ Creed, a statement of faith accepted by the church down through the ages, begins by mentioning all three persons of the Trinity: “I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ His only Son our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost.”

The Westminster Confession carries an eloquent defense of the Trinity: “There are three persons in the Godhead, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one God, the same in substance, equal in power and glory.” (NOTE: The Confession has been reworded in modern language.)

The understanding that God is a Trinity is unique to Christianity. Most non- Christian religions are either animistic or polytheistic; the few that believe in one God have no understanding of His being three persons in one. All major pseudo-Christian cults emphatically reject the belief as well.

 

Helping Strategy

1. Commend the inquirer for wanting to discover the truth about this important issue. Explain that God’s Word, the Bible, speaks eloquently of the reality of the Trinity.

2. Challenge him or her to receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. The best way to understand the Trinity is to receive eternal life through Jesus Christ. Explain “Steps to Peace with God,”  – Christian Biblical Counsel: STEPS TO PEACE WITH GOD

Some additional Scriptures you may find helpful are: “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all” (1 Timothy 2:5–6, NIV). See also Titus 3:5, John 1:12, John 3:36, and passages listed on the following pages in “Scripture.”

3. If the inquirer invites Christ into his or her life, share verses from “Assurance,”, and the chapter on “Assurance of Salvation.” –

Christian Biblical Counsel: ASSURANCE OF SALVATION

Christian Biblical Counsel: FINDING ASSURANCE OF SALVATION

Suggest the following:

A. Determine to take a strong stand for Christ.

B. Begin to read and study the Bible. Offer to send – Your New Life In Christ Bible Study for help in getting started.

C. Seek a Bible-teaching church where he or she can fellowship with other Christians, worship, pray, witness, and learn about “rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15).

4. Pray with the inquirer for a faithful walk with Christ and for a full understanding of the Bible.

 

Scripture

The Bible makes a convincing defense of the diversity and unity of the Trinity. The following is a sampling of the more obvious texts.

 

The Father:

There is one God and Father (1 Corinthians 8:6).

He is the author of our redemption (Galatians 1:3–4).

He is all-powerful (Ephesians 4:6).

He is unchanging (James 1:17).

He is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:3).

He is the Father of believers (2 Corinthians 6:17–18).

 

Jesus Christ, The Son:

He is eternal, from the beginning (John 1:1).

He became incarnate (John 1:14).

He is the author of grace and truth (John 1:17).

He is God’s Son, our Savior (John 3:16).

The Father loves the Son (John 3:35).

The Son loves the Father (John 14:31).

The Son and the Father are One (John 10:30).

 

The Holy Spirit:

God is a Spirit (John 4:24).

The Holy Spirit authored the Bible (2 Peter 1:21).

He guides into all truth (John 16:13).

He is sent by the Father to the world (John 14:26).

He dwells within believers (John 14:17).

He confirms that we are God’s children (Romans 8:16).

Believers can be filled with Him (Acts 4:31).

 

The Trinity Presented Together:

When Jesus was baptized, the Holy Spirit descended and the Father spoke (Matthew 3:16–17).

Believers are to be baptized and discipled in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:18–19).

 

The Unique Ministries of the Trinity in Redemption:

The part of the Father (Ephesians 1:3–6).

The part of the Son (Ephesians 1:6–12).

The part of the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13–14).

The Billy Graham Christian Worker’s Handbook; World Wide Publications, 1984, 1996

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