Trinity - References Used From Scripture

References Used From Scripture

Although the New Testament does not use the word Τριάς (Trinity) nor explicitly teach it, it provided the material upon which the doctrine of the Trinity was formulated. Reflection by early Christians on passages such as the Great Commission: "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" and Paul the Apostle's blessing: "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all," while at the same time the Jewish Shema Yisrael: "Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one." led the early Christians to question how the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are "one". Later, the diverse references to God, Jesus, and the Spirit found in the New Testament were systematized into a Trinity—one God subsisting in three persons and one substance—to combat heretical tendencies of how the three are related and to defend the church against charges of worshiping two or three gods.

In addition, the Old Testament has also been interpreted as foreshadowing the Trinity, by referring to God's word, his spirit, and Wisdom, as well as narratives such as the appearance of the three men to Abraham. However, it is generally agreed that it would go beyond the intention and spirit of the Old Testament to correlate these notions directly with later Trinitarian doctrine.

Some Church Fathers believed that a knowledge of the mystery was granted to the prophets and saints of the "Old Dispensation", and that they identified the divine messenger of Genesis 16:7, 21:17, 31:11, Exodus 3:2 and Wisdom of the sapiential books with the Son, and "the spirit of the Lord" with the Holy Spirit. Other Church Fathers, such as Gregory Nazianzen, argued in his Orations that the revelation was gradual:

The Old Testament proclaimed the Father openly, and the Son more obscurely. The New manifested the Son, and suggested the deity of the Spirit. Now the Spirit himself dwells among us, and supplies us with a clearer demonstration of himself. For it was not safe, when the Godhead of the Father was not yet acknowledged, plainly to proclaim the Son; nor when that of the Son was not yet received to burden us further.

Some scholars dispute the authenticity of the Trinity and argue that the doctrine is the result of "later theological interpretations of Christ's nature and function." The concept was expressed in early writings from the beginning of the 2nd century forward, and other scholars hold that the way the New Testament repeatedly speaks of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit is such as to "compel a trinitarian understanding of God".

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Famous quotes containing the word scripture:

    To say that God is an incorporeal substance, is to say in effect there is no God at all. What alleges he against it, but the School-divinity which I have already answered? Scripture he can bring none, because the word incorporeal is not found in Scripture.
    Thomas Hobbes (1579–1688)