June 22, Saturday

Todays’ Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend is written by Pastor Ryun Chang.


Spiritual Food for Thought for the Weekend

“How Come the Church Says Hardly Anything about the Trinity”

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 (2 Cor. 13:14)

When was the last time you heard a sermon on the Trinity?  I would bet that you don’t really remember.

While back, one brother wondered out loud, saying: “If the concept of the Trinity is THAT important to our salvation, how come we rarely talk about it? We talk a lot about the Gospel, the Bible, Deity of Jesus, and living a holy life, but we rarely talk about the importance of the Trinity.”  This assessment, of course, is quite true even though the Trinity is found in the core doctrinal statement of every evangelical church and seminary (including AMI).

So why are we so reticent on this matter?  Perhaps we affirm doctrines that we don’t really believe or care to truly understand because we’ve become intellectually lazy. While that may be true for some, one real reason for our reticence has to do with the difficulty in comprehending the concept that posits, “God is both three and one at the same time but not in the same sense” (Geisler 2003:29).  Say what?

One of the earliest attempts to make it more understandable to the human mind is called Sabellianism, which held that “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three modes or aspects of God, much as the sun is bright, hot and round” (Latourette 1975:144).  This view (a.k.a., modalism) was not received well because, while the word “Trinity” is not found in the Bible, its concept is rather clear, and it is not modalism.  

The assertation that there are three distinctive individuals in the Trinity is clearly attested when Jesus was being baptized by John.  Matthew writes, “And 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” (Mt. 4:16-7). What’s readily seen here is the Son, the Spirit and the Father, respectively, visibly present in this singular moment.

Now, the truth be told, one person in the Trinity who is often neglected by evangelicals is the Holy Spirit. When speaking of the Holy Spirit’s role in the Trinity, especially his role of as “merely” reminding us of the teachings of Christ (Jn. 14:26), we tend to lessen his importance. That’s a mistake.  

Do you know who raised Jesus from the dead? It was the Holy Spirit, who is the source of power; and the Spirit’s presence was powerfully at display on the day of Pentecost as people received power when the Holy Spirit came on them (Acts 1:8).  The apostle Paul describes this as “[God’s] incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of [God’s] mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead” (Eph. 1:19). Yes, without the power of the Holy Spirit working mightily on behalf of a lifeless body of Christ, there would have been no resurrection.

So, don’t treat the Holy Spirit as if He is a third wheel—He is every bit as divine as the Father and the Son. Thus, the Holy Spirit should be held up as an object of our praise and adoration, together with the Son and the Father in the Trinity.  And ask the Holy Spirit to fill you today to lead a more meaningful and fruitful life.

Prayer: Dear God, please forgive me for not respecting and not adoring the Holy Spirit.  O Spirit, fill me up today so that I can lead a more meaningful and fruitful life.  Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: 2 Samuel 15-16.

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