The Trinity

Is the Trinity Biblical?

Scriptural references to the Trinity:

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (Mt 28:19)

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all" (2 Cor 13:14)

"To God's elect...who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood" (1 Pt 1:1-2)

Equality of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made." (Jn 1:1-3)

"I and the Father are one." (Jn 10:30)

"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." (2 Cor 3:17-18)

"You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ." (Rom 8:9)

"Then Peter said, 'Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn't it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God.'" (Acts 5:3-4)

"Concerning this salvation, the prophets, who spoke of the grace that was to come to you, searched intently and with the greatest care, trying to find out the time and circumstances to which the Spirit of Christ in them was pointing when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, when they spoke of the things that have now been told you by those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven." (1 Pt 1:10-12)

Old Testament references to Christ/Holy Spirit:

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters." (Gen 1:1-2)

"Where is he who set his Holy Spirit among them, who sent his glorious arm of power to be at Moses' right hand, who divided the waters before them, to gain for himself everlasting renown, who led them through the depths? Like a horse in open country, they did not stumble; like cattle that go down to the plain, they were given rest by the Spirit of the Lord." (Is 63:11-14)

"The LORD says to my Lord: 'Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.'" (Ps 110:1)

See also the article on the Trinity from Torrey's Topical Textbook

How can God be both three and one?

The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three separate persons. Jesus is with God (Jn 1:1-2) and is seated at the Father's right hand (Mk 14:62, 16:19). The Holy Spirit was sent by the Father and Son (Jn 15:26) and could not come until after Jesus' death and resurrection (Jn 16:7).

At the same time, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are the same God. They share the same attributes:

Their words and actions are identical/in unison:

Since the Father, Son and Holy Spirit have the same knowledge, power, thoughts, words and actions, they are of the same essence/nature (Heb 1:3, Col 1:15). There is one essence - one God (Dt 6:4) - yet three persons who are this essence, whose nature is the one divine nature of God. To interact with one is to interact with the other two. As Jesus told his disciples, "If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well...Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father" (Jn 14:7-9).

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