What is the Trinity?

Here are some notes I typed up from Mark Driscoll & Gerry Breshears’ Doctrine: What Christians Should Believe on the Trinity. Obviously much more could be said, but I found these three essential truths very helpful.

What is the Trinity? 

“While the word Trinity does not appear in Scripture, this One-who-is Three concept very clearly does. The word Trinity is used as a shorthand way of explaining a great deal of biblical truth” (p.12).

The Trinity does not mean:

  1. There are three Gods
  2. OR one God manifests himself as either Father, Son, or Holy Spirit on various occasions (Variation of text on p.12).

What are the three biblical truths that are brought together with the doctrine of the Trinity?

  1. There is only one true God.
  2. The Father, Son, and Spirit are equally declared throughout Scripture to be God.
  3. There is only one true God, but the Father, Son and Spirit are distinct persons.

Three equally essential biblical truths:

1. There is only one true God. 

A. Old Testament

Deuteronomy 4:35 To you it was shown, that you might know that the LORD is God; there is no other besides him.

Psalm 86:8-10 There is none like you among the gods, O Lord,

nor are there any works like yours.

All the nations you have made shall come

and worship before you, O Lord,

and shall glorify your name.

For you are great and do wondrous things;

you alone are God.

B. New Testament

Romans 16:27 …to the only wise God be glory forevermore through Jesus Christ! Amen.

James 2:19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!

There is only one true God.

2. The Father, Son, and Spirit are equally declared throughout Scripture to be God. 

A. The Father is God

John 17:3 And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

1 Corinthians 8:6 …yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

B. The Son is God

John 5:17-18 But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.” This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.

Romans 9:5 To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen.

Hebrews 1:8-9 But of the Son he says,

“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever,

the scepter of uprightness is the scepter of your kingdom.

You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;

therefore God, your God, has anointed you

with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”

C. The Holy Spirit is God

Isaiah 40:13-13;18 Who has measured the Spirit of the LORD,

or what man shows him his counsel?

Whom did he consult,

and who made him understand?

Who taught him the path of justice,

and taught him knowledge,

and showed him the way of understanding? . . .

To whom then will you liken God,

or what likeness compare with him?

Acts 5:3-4 But 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? While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to man but to God.”

The Father, Son, and Spirit are equally declared throughout Scripture to be God.

3. There is only one true God, but the Father, Son and Spirit are distinct persons. 

A. The Father and Son are two persons.

Galatians 1:3-5 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

B. Jesus and the Holy Spirit are two persons. 

John 15:26 “But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.

C. The Father and the Holy Spirit are two persons.

Romans 8:26-27 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

There is only one true God, but the Father, Son and Spirit are distinct persons.

Remember, we have been searching for the answer to the question, What is the Trinity?

Trinity Defined:

“The Trinity is one God who eternally exists as three distinct persons – Father, Son, and Spirit – who are each fully and equally God in relation with each other” (p.13).

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About Daniel Ray
My wife and I live in Waxhaw, NC. Currently, I am a Sales Manager for a flooring company in Charlotte and also a distance student at UNCG. When I have time I like to hear live music, play golf, run, read good books, hike and ride my mountain bike. My wife and I are sinners saved by grace, trying to walk it out in grace.

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