The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Otherness
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The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:42 am

Could it be that there is an “other” way to approach the problem we have trying to “understand” the Trinity? In Exodus 3 we hear God revealing His essential identity and nature : I AM THAT I AM or I AM WHO I AM. This claim (TRUTH) is profound beyond the ability of words to express it. We contemplate the meaning, but really…our own ontology instantly darkens our gaze and our spiritual eyes begin to glaze over. There is this Being Who simply always IS, and Who is prior to not only any “thing,” but also is the only Reality that IS! There is nothing that exists, no movement, no sound, no space, no time, no cosmos – absolutely nothing : only “an” I AM! The only Absolute, and nothing, nothing, nothing else.

I AM desires “something” other than (Him)self, but where is He going to get the reality of what “otherness” is because He is all there is. To create a truly other “something” the reality of “otherness” must first be established and grounded in His own Being (where else is it going to come from – there is nothing else). I AM “knows” how to do this, He – Himself – the One Who is WHAT He IS “decides” to exist in a state of “otherness” in His own Being : “now” God is the Father - Who is other than the Son, and God is the Son – Who is other than the Father The Holy Spirit is the (“resultant”) Living Dynamic of this relationship, His own awareness of Himself existing as such : His own pure I AM not identifying as either Father or Son. Lest we default in our thinking here to our own ontology, thereby thinking that this sounds like God is changing or becoming, remember that there is nothing but the Being of God being THAT that he needs TO BE to be Creator (“readying” Himself to be Creator).

Now a truly other reality, an objective reality, is possible because I AM exists as Trinity, as Creator. We are not phantoms, ethereal beings, existing only in the thoughts and dreams of God, only because God, in His Divine creative genius IS what He desires TO BE because He desires to create truly other beings in a truly objective reality that is established and grounded in the absoluteness of His own Being.

Well…much left unsaid. May our Beloved Triune God be glorified in Jesus!

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Paidion
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Paidion » Thu Nov 23, 2017 9:17 pm

What is the origin of your belief that God is a Trinity? Merely tradition? Or do you find it in the Bible?

Yes, you can find it in the King James Version (and the translations based on the King James) of 1 John 5:7
For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
However, this sentence was ADDED to the text of 1 John, in the ninth century. Reliable translations such as the RSV, the ESV, and the NASB, do not include it.
Paidion

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Otherness
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:36 pm

Reply to Paidion

Paidion>>>What is the origin of your belief that God is a Trinity? Merely tradition? Or do you find it in the Bible?<<<

Greetings Paidion, I appreciate your moniker because I, too, believe (experience) that as intimacy with our Father grows the inner man becomes more youthful. My belief in the Trinity is grounded in Scripture, not only in the explicit declarations found in the Gospel of John concerning Jesus’ self-identity and the Personhood of the Spirit, but also in the Pauline explication of the mystery of godliness – not just the statement itself in First Timothy, but throughout his other writings. Really, I can do nothing to improve Steve’s apologetic on this matter in his topical lecture on the Trinity.

Let me just say that I know, experientially, the truth of this “belief” because the Holy Spirit (the simple “I AM” Who God is) burns in the core of my being (my created “i am”) just as the fire miraculously coexisted with the bush during Moses’ encounter with I AM. Also, I know that with Jesus, Himself, I have what Adam lost for me : Person to person intimacy with the God Who is God Himself. What’s more I have more than what Adam lost in the sense that at every moment, by the Holy Spirit’s Presence, I am made free to continuously choose Jesus. For nearly 50 years He has been unreasonably gracious with me (actually, even before this when I knew Him not), sticking closer than a brother who is willing to lay himself down for my eternal well-being.

So…no, my belief in the Trinity is not (only, or primarily) based on 1 John 5:7. Additionally, I firmly believe that (secular) humanity’s efforts to understand the nature of reality is leading it not only back to God, but to the conclusion that the idea of an “objective” reality” can only be regained by positing a “transcendent reality” that already possesses the quality of “objectiveness” within it. The discoveries of the favored epistemology of secular humanity - “scientific naturalism” - have served to undermine its own presuppositions.

Much still left unsaid. Always, all glory to our Creator : Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!

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Paidion
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Paidion » Sat Nov 25, 2017 11:41 pm

If God is a Trinity of three divine Persons, why is it that the word "God" in the New Testament NEVER refers to a Trinity? It almost always refers to the Father alone, although it sometimes refers to the Son of God alone. But it NEVER refers to a compound God known as "The Trinity." Why not, if the Trinity is depicted throughout the Bible as you believe?
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mattrose
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by mattrose » Sun Nov 26, 2017 1:07 am

Sometimes I think it's funny how stuck we get on terminology

For instance, there are a lot of people who would deny 'The Trinity' and yet would totally agree that there are three (Father, Son & Spirit) who are in perfect unity and worthy of worship.

Otherness
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Sun Nov 26, 2017 4:40 pm

Paidion>>>If God is a Trinity of three divine Persons, why is it that the word "God" in the New Testament NEVER refers to a Trinity? It almost always refers to the Father alone, although it sometimes refers to the Son of God alone. But it NEVER refers to a compound God known as "The Trinity." Why not, if the Trinity is depicted throughout the Bible as you believe?<<<

Hello again Paidion, and thank you for your interest thus far. Here, as always, when I speak to others about these things, I present myself merely as a “witness” giving testimony of what I have seen and heard. This serves to somewhat lessen any unnecessary burden of the “offence” that attends the confidence with which I speak. We would all, believer and unbeliever alike, benefit from a more gracious approach in our “differences” with one another. The unity that our God so much desires lies in this direction of presenting ourselves and accepting others as witnesses. I say these things not to imply any ungraciousness on your part, but only that you might know my heart when my own words might imply otherwise.

What I say below, in an attempt to answer to your question, I know you already know. Apparently, though, I integrate the elements of this knowledge differently than you do. For the moment, however, let me assert that the Trinity arises organically from the whole of Scripture, and – by my witness – corresponds precisely with the data presented.

My answer to your question is that the agenda of the New Testament is to document the fulfillment of the “promises made to the fathers” in the Person and Life (accomplishments) of Jesus. The New Testament throws its full weight upon (that is, it’s all about glorifying) Jesus for the purpose that all humanity be drawn to Him. He (His own Personal Self) is the balm that is applied to the mortal wound in the spirit of (a) man so that God’s original intention in creation might (must) succeed. It lays its foundation (1 Cor. 3:11) in our present reality (the Incarnation) so that we might be able to begin to relate (come alive) to God through immanence (the Son) to the end that we know God transcendent, the Father (the only True God).

It’s perfectly reasonable to assume that the thief on the cross had not worked out the “Doctrine of the Trinity” when he threw himself upon Jesus. He, a dead man, laid himself directly on the foundation of the Lord(ship) (of) Jesus Christ. He had no time to “be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ” (2 Cor. 11:3). The whole thrust of the Gospel is to connect us to the Son, and then “all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” will be worked out in us by the ministration of the Holy Spirit. The New Testament is all about Jesus, so that it may come to be all about all of Who God is and that we may be filled with all the fullness of God Himself (Eph. 3:19).
Last edited by Otherness on Sat Feb 10, 2018 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

Otherness
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Sun Nov 26, 2017 4:42 pm

Hello mattrose,

>>>Sometimes I think it's funny how stuck we get on terminology. For instance, there are a lot of people who would deny 'The Trinity' and yet would totally agree that there are three (Father, Son & Spirit) who are in perfect unity and worthy of worship<<<

Yes…it is very difficult to connect these kinds of dots that somewhat mysteriously emerge from the other side of the veil. We C(c)hristians have divided, even murderously, because of the caricatures we have constructed out of these dots due to our misplaced priorities.

I think it was back in the 80’s that “hidden image stereograms” were very popular. Apparent 2-dimensional “random dot” patterns hid a 3-dimensional image that popped out when viewed with the proper technique. The whole mystery of God is somewhat like this, that is, when one uses the “right technique” everything else falls into place. The right technique viewing the mystery of God is to keep one’s gaze continuously focused on seeing (knowing) “Jesus Christ, and Him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2) so that the flesh is forced into a state of continual mortification. Then the cognitive apparatus of our beings is retuned by the Presence of the Holy Spirit to be obsessed with knowing the KNOWER, rather than knowing knowledge. Knowledge, as we know, puffs up – but knowing the KNOWER transmutes knowledge into Love, because this is the Being of God (the Father loves the Son and the Son loves the Father) in Eternity.

Otherness
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:45 pm

It does seem impossible to find a truly satisfying explanation through analogy of just how it can be said that One is truly One while in the same “time and place” this One is Three. Trying to solve this enigma this way (through analogy) is trying to pull down a higher dimensional (more than 4-dimensions) truth and precisely describe it with 4-dimensional rationalizations. A dog shares this 4-dimensional reality with us with remarkable compatibility, but simply does not have the quality of consciousness to get itself to the moon – ironically an attempt at analogy. In our relationship with God we have an advantage that dogs do not have in their relationship with us, that is, we are made in the image and likeness of God.

In our context here this “image and likeness” quality is best expressed by recognizing that God has revealed His essential identity and nature in His “I AM” statement about Himself, and that we also are most accurately identified in our essence as a (created) “i am.” The problem is that we take our intuitive sense of what an “I am” is from our own experience of ourselves and, by default, use it in our cogitations about “I AM.” It is just not possible to get where we want from this starting point.

The way our created “i am” has come to be, that is, just the very fact that it is a created “i am,” (compounded by the handicap that this “i am” is corrupt in its natural state) makes it all but impossible to “understand” what we would love to understand. In as much as we are a created “i am” we are not truly free, within ourselves, to identify what it is to be an “I am,” and any attempt on our part to do so “adds” to the brokenness of what we really are. Our true identity – what we are as created beings – can only be accurately identified by our Creator. I AM (God) is not so limited, that is, there is absolutely nothing restricting His own self-identity, no pathology if He chooses (in eternity) to allow His Being to exist in a “broken” state for the purpose of, in the first place, creating (a truly objective – an “other” – reality) and then achieving His creative purpose. This “brokenness” of God is a brokenness He “suffers” for the greater good of the magnification of the Love that is His own Being as He fulfills all the fullness of Himself in bringing forth the Love that is the Body of Christ. When this fulfillment is finally full then (1 Cor 15:28) His “brokenness” will be filled in by the presence of Him (Jesus) presenting Himself with us, His Body, to the Father.

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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:02 am

The Scriptures (especially Psalm 19 and Romans 1) testify that Creation itself is a revelation from (of) God that glorifies the reality of His Being. However, humanity in its corrupted state misapprehends the witness of His handiwork, just as it failed to recognize Him when He appeared amongst us. The majesty and wonder of the natural world is marveled at, but mankind has constructed a narrative about it that robs God of the glory due Him, just as the stories it tells itself about the Person of Jesus robs Him of His true identity. Nonetheless, just as the truth of Who Jesus really is persists, so also does the glory of the truth of the natural world.

General revelation is just as valid today as it was in the times of humanity’s unsophisticated (unscientific) understanding of the cosmos; it is just that one must let the special revelation of Scripture govern one’s understanding of the natural world. Then it is possible to see our wonderful God not only affirming His Presence, but actually confirming that He is the God He reveals Himself to be in Scripture.

Just around one hundred years ago the brightest minds of humanity “discovered” that the age old (at least as far back as Aristotle) presupposition that it was possible to investigate “reality” as an “objective observer” was, in fact, a naïve assertion. Both General Relativity and Quantum Theory demonstrate that absolutely everything (the entire cosmos) is one whole organic “entity,” and that nothing in it or of it can “claim” an absolute object/object status vis-a-vis it. (This, by the way, is the ontological foundation of the moral relativism and lack of absolutes of our times). There are attempts to rescue this foundational presupposition of science, but this is just not going to be possible. The only way to get a truly objective reference frame “back,” is to posit a transcendent reality and find “some way” to prove its existence. What we have here is that rather famous “Peter Principle” in play, that is, humanity has promoted itself to the level that it is no longer competent for the task at hand.

It just so happens that we Christians have a “Transcendent Reality” Who exists in a state of “objectiveness” (a state of “otherness” within Himself), and He has proved His existence by appearing in our history! As a matter of fact, it is for the very reason that He is “Other” within Himself that a truly “other” (objective) reality can even exist. Were God not Trinity, then “our reality” would (by analogy) be no more real than our dreams. And wonderfully, this “understanding” leads to a very comprehensive and satisfying theodicy.

Otherness
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Re: The Divine Genius of the Trinity

Post by Otherness » Sun Dec 03, 2017 5:47 pm

The best minds of secular humanity testify that “our cosmos” began as the Singularity of General Relativity; and / or perhaps it emerged spontaneously from the nothing of the Quantum Vacuum. They suspect there may (must) be something deeper (more), but it is hidden from (by) all known laws of physics. So…this is as “far back / far down” as they are able to go, and on this foundation they have co-opted the 5% of the matter and energy of the universe that they “understand” – [the rest is “dark” – meaning they don’t understand what it is] -- and constructed the most sophisticated origin myth that humanity has ever told itself. Within this paradigm there is no “objective reference frame” because it, itself, is an organic whole -- that is, every “smallest to biggest” part of it is organically tied together – and they are embedded within it. There is no place within it where they can stand and claim an objective perspective on reality. If there is any objective reference frame it must be a transcendent one. Unfortunately, the epistemology that secular humanity worships – scientific naturalism – excludes this, by its own definition of itself, from consideration. Thus, this whole narrative is “of this world;” it is not a provably objectively true description of reality. It is a matter of faith -- no matter what the pattern of the dots they insist they have connected.

Our faith, too, takes us back to the beginning, and it also inspires in us sublimely reasonable thoughts about THAT – -- that was before the beginning. Before the beginning there is I AM. There is nothing else – no “other” realty -- only eternal infinite stillness, silence, darkness. I AM stirs (broods?). I AM desires “other beings” with whom to share Life. I AM loves the “thought” of this. I AM wills that these other beings be truly other than (Him)Self – not just thoughts in His Being. I AM “grounds” the reality of what true “otherness” is (objective reality) in His own Being by existing in a state of “otherness” Himself. He (His Spirit 1 Cor 2:11) – therefore – knows Himself as both Father and Offspring (Son). Now there is the reality of what “otherness” is : now a created objective reality is possible. He IS the “blueprint” of what He desires to create. This IS “I AM” the Creator : Father, Son, Holy Spirit : Sovereign God.

There is great risk here. Our Creator is creating a reality that is truly “other” than Him. There is the risk that these “truly others” – these ontological others – can be(come) other than what He intends. Being other than what He intends – is not good – it is EVIL. This is what evil is : it is that which is (ontologically) other than what good is. It is to fail to be what the blueprint of GOOD -- [God alone is GOOD] -- is in the Eternal Being of God (viz. being Other centered). But before all else – before creation – God’s Being is committed to the reality of “otherness.” This is -- before all -- what His Being IS because the Father (Who is other than the Son) loves the Son, and the Son (Who is other than the Father) loves the Father in Eternity. He IS the MAKER of others (this is His first love in creation) : it is the others who can (and do) make (themselves) EVIL.

I AM chooses “others” and willingly suffers (allows) the necessary risk. He has a plan! He is as committed in Creation to love of “other(ness)” as He is in His own Eternal Being. History documents our faith, and shakes its head in derision at that other story man tells himself.

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