Doctrine #1 – Trinity: God Is

Many systematic theology textbooks start with revelation and how God speaks to us through the Scriptures. This is not a bad first step, but is it the best first step? Like a coach trying to get your feet right at the starting line, we will begin with God. We begin where the Bible begins – God. Everything right begins with God. Everything wrong begins with no God, or some false god(s).




Starting Off on the Right Foot

•Genesis 1:1 – In the beginning, God created… •The Bible is about God & you

•Atheism is wrong – There is a God

•Polytheism is wrong – There is only one God (not gods) •Pantheism/Panentheism is wrong – God is Creator, not creation •Agnosticism is wrong – This one Creator God can be known

What Is the Trinity?

The Trinity is one God who eternally exists as three distinct persons – Father, Son, and Spirit – who are each fully and equally God.

• Terms:
• Persons – The Trinity does not have a human body, but each are living beings that think,
feel, act, speak, love, and relate
• Equally God – They share all divine attributes
There is Only One God
• Deuteronomy 4:35 – …the Lord is God; there is no other besides him
• Deuteronomy 32:39 – …there is no God beside me…
• Psalm 86:10 – …you alone are God
• Isaiah 43:10 – Before me no God was formed, nor shall there be any after me
• Isaiah 45:5 – I am the LORD, and there is no other, besides me there is no God… • 1 Timothy 1:17 – …the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God…
• 1 Timothy 2:5 – …there is one God…

There Are Many Demonic False Gods

• John 17:3 – …the only true God…

• 1 Corinthians 10:20 – …what pagans sacrifice, they offer to demons and not to God. I do
not want you to be participants with demons.

• 2 Thessalonians 2:9-10 – The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all
power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception…

• Exodus – God creating a Kingdom/Satan counterfeiting a world (God vs. Satan, Kingdom vs. Egypt, Real Prophets vs. False Prophets, Real Miracles vs. Counterfeit, Freedom to worship God vs. Slave to worship the gods)

• Exodus 5:1-2 – Moses and Aaron went and said to Pharaoh, “Thus says the LORD, the God of Israel, ‘Let my people go, that they may hold a feast to me in the wilderness.’” But Pharaoh said “Who is the LORD, that I should obey his voice and let Israel go? I do not know the LORD, and moreover, I will not let Israel go.”

• Exodus 12:12 – I will pass through the land of Egypt that night, and I will strike all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and on all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments: I am the Lord.

• Exodus 18:10-11 – Jethro said “Blessed be the LORD, who has delivered you out of the hand of the Egyptians and out of the hand of Pharaoh and has delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. Now I know that the LORD is greater than all gods.”
• Exodus 20:3-5 (Commandments 1-2) – “You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the Lord your God am a jealous God…”

Three Heresies About the Trinity

1. There is more than one God

2. There are three divine manifestations, not Persons

3. There is one God but not in three Persons

The Father is God

• John 6:27 – …God the Father…
• 1 Corinthians 8:6 – …there is one God, the Father…
• John 14:9 – “Whoever has seen me [Jesus] has seen the Father.” • Colossians 1:15 – He is the image of the invisible God…

The Son is God

• John 1:1-4, 14 – In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…
• John 8:58 – “Truly, truly, I [Jesus] say to you, before Abraham was, I am.”
• John 20:28 – Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!”
• Romans 9:5 – …Christ, who is God over all…
• Titus 2:13 – …our great God and Savior Jesus Christ…
• 1 John 5:20 – …Jesus Christ. He is the true God…

The Spirit is God

• 2 Corinthians 3:17-18 – Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
• Acts 5:3-4 – Peter said “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land? You have not lied to men but to God.”
Does the Trinity Appear in the Old Testament?
• Genesis 1:1-2 – In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
• Genesis 1:26 – Then God said “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…”
• Genesis 3:22 – Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us…” • Genesis 11:6-7 – “And the LORD said…Come, let us…”
• Deuteronomy 6:4-5 – “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love
the LORD your God…”
• Isaiah 48:16 – …And now the Lord GOD [Father] has sent me [Jesus] and his Spirit.
• Isaiah 61:1 – The Spirit of the Lord GOD [Father] is upon me [Jesus], because the LORD
has anointed me to bring good news to the poor…

Does the Trinity Appear in the New Testament?

• Luke 1:35 – And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High [Father] will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy – the Son of God [Jesus].”
• Matthew 3:16-17 – …when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; and behold, a voice from heaven said “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”
• Matthew 28:19 – Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

How Does the Trinity Work Together?

• 1 Peter 1:2 – …the foreknowledge of God the Father, in the sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and for sprinkling with his blood…
God is Love
• 1 John 4:8 – …God is love
• John 3:35 – The Father loves the Son… • John 14:31 – …I [Jesus] love the Father…
1. God is relational with perfect relationships, so we look to God for healthy relationship 2. God is loving with perfect love, so we look to God for holy love
3. God is like a community, so we look to God for healthy community
4. God is like a family, so we look to God for healthy family

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Mark Driscoll

It's all about Jesus! Read More