The Triune God
NIV 2 Corinthians 13:14 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
Augustine said: if you deny the Trinity you lose your soul, but if you try to explain it you lose mind.
I (who is seminary trained, which doesn’t really mean anything) will try my best to explain who God is as He has revealed Himself in Scripture, as the one true, living, and Trinitarian God. Remember one of the targets of the REYouthPastor.com website is to tackle deep theological topics so youth pastors can understand why it is important to teach doctrine to our students. It is our hope to make our youth sermons, youth ministry teachings and lessons more theological and not so topical. Imagine how cool it would be if youth ministries across the USA started teaching and preaching on the Trinity Doctrine.
The word Trinity was coined by Tertullian in the 1st century. The Trinity is: One God who eternally exists as three distinct equal persons, Father, Son, Spirit, who are each fully and equally God. The Trinitarian God idea is one essence, three persons.
The Trinity isn’t in the Bible, so why do our student need to know about the ancient doctrine of the Trinity?
Trinity Doctrine Development
In the first three centuries, there was much attack on monotheism and Christ’s Deity. The Trinity correctly explains the heritage of monotheism, the confession of Jesus’ lordship, and the experience of the presence of the Holy Spirit. Basically there is one God, Jesus is Lord and human, and the Holy Spirit is active and present in our world.
God is one
God is three
God is diversity
God is unity
Possible analogies for the Trinity:
- H20 = Ice, water, steam—three modes in which the one chemical formula can appear.
- Tree = Root, trunk, and branch
- Egg = yolk, eggwhite, and shell
- Threeheaded dog = Three heads, one dog
**Remember these analogies are helpful but are majorly flawed.
It seems like Catholics focus on the Father, Evangelicals focus on Jesus, and the Pentecostals focus on the Holy Spirit. How can our youth ministries become more Trinitarian?
What is the Trinitarian life for a student?
Youth Group Discussion Questions:
Consider the following scriptures: 2 Chr. 15:3, Jer 10:10, John 17:3, 1 Thess. 1:9. What does this tell about the nature of God?
What is the implication of this truth for other religions and gods?
There are many scriptures that declare that the Father( Jn. 6:27, 1 Peter 1:3), the Son (Rom. 9:5, Gal 4:4) and the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3-4, 2 Cor. 3:16-18) are God. How is this reconciled with the statements of one God through scriptures like Gen. 1:26, 3:22, Is. 6:8?
What does it mean that the Father, Son and Spirit are distinct persons?
How does Matt. 3:16-17 support the distinct personhood of the Father, Son and Spirit?
Why does this matter?
Why is the Trinity an essential doctrine to Christian faith?
Why is it important to understand the nature of God as he has revealed Himself?
How do you relate and pray to God the Father? The Son? The Spirit?
What does a Trinitarian life look like for you personally?
What aspects of the Trinity (community, relationship, submission…etc) are missing from your life?
How is God calling you to worship Him in light of His Trinitarian nature?
God is joyful. God isn’t this big old bad wolf in the sky waiting for us to mess up. Why? In the Trinity there is equality, there is no lying, no disrespect, no secrets, no hiding, no blaming just love!! Perfect love, intimacy, connection, submission, and adoration!
The Trinity agreed to save us! God made the world, Jesus agreed to come down, and the Spirit is with us.