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Clergy View: The Triune God

Trinity Sunday ascribes to the Triune God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

A Bible text for Trinity Sunday is from the Miniature Gospel. In my article I will allude to the entire text from John 3:16-21, which further expounds upon the first verse: "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

God is the first person of the Triune God. In the Christian world, those who believe in God, as the Father, also believe in Jesus Christ, as the Son of God; the second person in the Godhead. But when we refer to the third person in the Godhead, believing in the Holy Spirit, that remains a mystery to many, as there are many misconceptions of what the Holy Spirit is. The Triune God works to save sin-fallen mankind. God is a hidden God if He has not gifted a person with the Holy Spirit.

The power and guidance of God's spirit is mentioned already in the Old Testament. According to the story of creation, "The spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters." (Gen.1: 2). Isaiah spoke of those who rebelled and "vexed his holy spirit." Under God's wrath they remembered Moses and asked: "Where is he that brought them up out of the sea with the shepherd of his flock? Where is he that put his holy spirit within him?" (Isaiah 63:10, 11). The prophets also foretold the pouring of the spirit in the last times (Isaiah 44: 3). Jesus spoke of the promise of the Holy Spirit before his death, "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you" (John 14:26). The Holy Spirit is the key to understanding God's revelation. No prophecy of the scripture 'is of any private interpretation' (2 Peter 1:20-21).

The Bible also speaks of the Kingdom of God. When Jesus began his public ministry, He said, "Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matthew 4:17). Also, when Jesus taught the disciples how to pray, He said, "Thy kingdom come" (Matthew 6:10). One of the most clear-cut messages of the Kingdom was in Jesus sermon on the mount, when he said, 'But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness" (Matthew 6:33). The above references, and others, makes it very clear that God has His Kingdom upon this earth and one must find this Kingdom. Jesus said, "The kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field" (Matthew 13:44). Luther further clarifies the existence of God's kingdom on earth: "I believe that there is on earth a holy flock and congregation of pure saints under one Head, Christ, called together by the Holy Spirit in one faith, one mind and understanding, with manifold gifts, yet one in love, without sects and schisms."

As we read further, Jesus clarifies verse 16: "But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God" (vs 21). The reason not everyone who call upon His name will not be saved is because, according to Jesus words, "He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. This is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil (vs 18-19).

The Bible states, "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven" (Matthew 7:21). This can only be understood by the power of the Holy Spirit (the third person in the Godhead), which is within the hearts of those who abide in God's Kingdom. The Bible is a closed book unless the Holy Spirit can open one's understanding of living faith. The Spirit opens the Word of God and Christ. In Martin Luther's explanation of the Third Article of the Creed, he states, "I believe that I cannot of my own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord, or come to Him, but the Holy Spirit has called me through the Gospel, enlightened me by His gifts and sanctified and preserved me in the true faith, even as He calls, gathers, enlightens and sanctifies the whole Christian Church on earth and preserves it in union with Jesus Christ in the true faith.'

Jesus told Nathanael "Come follow me" and "Come see" (John 1:43 & 46). One needs to find God's Kingdom where the gospel of the forgiveness of sins is preached in Jesus name and blood through the power of the Holy Spirit (Mark 1:14). There is no remission of sins without the shedding of blood (Hebrews 9:22). The Apostle Paul wrote, "For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel" (I Corinthians 1:17). John wrote, "I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for His name's sake" (I John 2:12).

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