Credo: Triune God: "
I believe that God is three persons in one substance. Within the trinity exists the perfect and holy love communion between God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. The trinity is a perfect, three-in-one relationship between the three distinct persons of God. The three persons in the trinity are unified together by the same goal: to do the work of Christ and to bring people into relationship with God. They are diverse from each other, but are all completely equal. There is no hierarchy between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit within the trinity.
Someone asked in the first Credo post on God why I didn’t refer to Jesus or the Trinity? Well – I could have been snarky and say something like, “Well – since the BIBLE never uses the word “Trinity” – why should I in my Credo? But it’s really just because I’m going through my Credo according to the way I split up the topics up when I made the Credo in 2000. However, I don’t know that one can really talk about God without talking about God’s relational nature and mutual indwelling (or, one of everyone’s favorite seminary words: interpenetration – snicker snicker…) of the other parts of the Godhead.
Now, I don’t feel like getting into any intensely philosophical debate and start throwing around words like homoousious or anything – but I do still connect with what I wrote in the second sentence. “Within the trinity exists the perfect and holy love and communion.” Through the Triune God, we know humanity is called to be in relationship with other humans. While there are many ways in which people talk about the imago Dei (image of God) – one of the primary ways I see that we are made in God’s image is that we are created to be relational. The community and relationality that exists in the Triune God has to be central to our understanding of both who God is and who we have been created to become.
The one line that I would challenge my 20-yr old self on is where I define what the goal of the Triune God is: “to do the work of Christ and to bring people into relationship with God.” I’m sure this is no surprise, but I don’t think I would want to “box” in the Triune God that much – to say that “These are the two goals of God.” Certainly the Triune God does continue on the work of Christ and draws people into relationship with Godself, but there is so much more than God is up to in this world, I wouldn’t want to simply say “these are the two goals.”
Credo 2009: Triune God
The Triune God consists of God the Creator, God the Redeemer and God the Sustainer. Rather than existing in an hierarchical relationship together, the Triune God is a relational being – one which is dynamic and organic. The relationship is best described as that of a 3-person dance (perichoresis). The relationality between the members of the Triune God gives humanity one of its greatest clues to what being created in the imago dei truly means – to be in relationship with others and with God Godself. Again, as with God, I don’t want to limit the ways in which the Triune God works in the world through Godself, God’s Spirit and others in the world. There is far more about the nature of the Triune God than I will ever know or understand – and that’s a good place to be, I think.
What do you think? What did I leave out?