Deuteronomy 6:4, “Hear, 0 Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord.” In order to understand the tri-unity of God and the relationship we have with Him, we must start first by understanding His oneness. For instance, let's look at the scripture I have just quoted you. The word in the Hebrew for one is Echad. This word connotates a collective oneness. In other words, a united oneness rather than a numerical oneness. Through this word we can see that the oneness is not a reference to a numerical but rather a unified oneness.
Let us go on to other scriptures that give us examples of the oneness of God as a harmonious oneness. In Genesis 1:26, God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” We see a plurality in the Godhead, yet a oneness of God. Other examples of this can be found in Genesis 3:22, “And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever,” and Genesis 11:6-7, “And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech.” In verse 6, the Lord uses the word one as in a collective oneness and again notice the plurality of the word "us" in verse 7 when referring to himself.
In a sense this illustrates the image of our own being as triune, and shows that we are made in the image of God. It is really not that complex a matter to understand. For example, Jesus said concerning marriage, “And they twain shall be one flesh,” Matthew 19:5, yet when we see two people who are married, physically, it looks like two people but Jesus called them one. There's a joining together and a collective oneness implied such as one egg containing a yolk, egg white and shell.
Jesus Christ himself spoke of this type of oneness and the unity between the Father and He, and ourselves (his disciples) and He. John 17:11 says, “And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are.” John 17:21 says, “That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.” Verse 22 reads, “And the glory thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:” Verse 23 says, “I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one.” From these verses we can see that Christ is referring to a unified oneness rather than a numerical oneness.
It is obvious that the body of Christ has many members but one body as Paul said in 1 Corinthians 12:12, “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.” Jesus prayed that we may be one even as He and the Father are one.
If He and the Father are numerically one in the same person, then we can conclude that God wishes to make us numerically one.
Jesus referred to David’s statement, in Psalms 110:1, “The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool,” a direct reference to the Father and the Son as being separate entities in the Godhead. And Jesus, himself, gives credence to this statement spoken by the Holy Ghost through King David.
We are told in some denominational sects that we will only see Jesus Christ when we go to Heaven or that there will only be Jesus Christ; that God is numerically one. This teaching fails the test of being in harmony with all of the scriptures. You decide, for yourself, in Christ, what is correct.
Now that we have established the oneness of God through the scriptures, let us prove out their separate identities.
In this section, we will examine some verses of scripture that prove out the person of God in the so-called "Trinity."
Let us begin with Mark 1:10, “And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the Heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon Him.” Verse 11 says, “And there came a voice from Heaven, saying Thou art my beloved, Son in whom I am well pleased,” a statement used by the Father in several scriptures where He was heard speaking.
We see in these two verses a distinction between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In verse 10 we see the Spirit descending upon Christ. In verse 11, we see the Father speaking out of Heaven that He is well pleased with his Son. And we see Jesus Christ, himself, being baptized. It is very obvious that, in this particular set of scriptures, clearly there is a distinction that there is not a numerical oneness here. If there is, and Jesus is that numerical one, then He is speaking to Himself from Heaven and descending upon Himself.
Let's look at another portion of scripture, Acts 7:55, “But He, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up steadfastly into Heaven, and saw the Glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God.” In this verse, there is a clear distinction between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Stephen was full of the Holy Ghost, the Holy Ghost being on earth and absent from Heaven. John 16:7, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.” He looked into Heaven and saw Jesus Christ standing at the right hand of God the Father.
The noun "God" in scriptures is most usually a reference to the Father, and "Lord" is usually a reference to Christ. As Stephen is being stoned, he clearly sees God the Father and Jesus Christ, His Son, in Heaven as separate and distinct.
Now that we have briefly established the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, let us go on to defining their relationship to us and their separate operations or administrations.
It is wonderful to know that we have a Heavenly Father. It is also essential to know the Heavenly Father and to understand Him as best we can through His written Word.
Let us now begin to define the person of the Father. In 1 Corinthians 12:4-6, “Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all,” we can see a distinction of administrations and operations that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit have in the body. Verse 4 says, “Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.” This a reference to the Holy Spirit, of course. Verse 5, “And there are different administrations, but the same Lord.” This is a reference to the Lord Jesus Christ. Verse 6, “And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.” This is a reference to the Father.
Here we can see the different administrations of the Godhead. Spiritual gifts by the Holy Spirit, administrations by Jesus Christ, and operations by God the Father. Some have asserted that the name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit is Jesus Christ. Let me point out here, without desiring to be contentious, that the word Father is a name, Holy Spirit is a name, and actually Son can be considered a name, although the Son’s name is Jesus Christ.
It should be noted that in the Old Testament there are many names that God refers to Himself – Jah (the sacred name, most reverent); Anonay (the Lord most sovereign); Jehovah (the self existent or eternal, the Lord); Jehovah Jireh (Jehovah will provide); Jehovah Nissi (my banner); Jehovah Tsidkenu (our righteousness); Jehovah Shalom (Jehovah is peace); Jehovah Shammah (the Lord is there), are just a few.
But Jesus Christ is the only name under heaven by which men can be saved. Acts 4:10-12, “Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
The Father carries out all chief operations in the universe. His commands are administered by Jesus Christ, John 1:3, “All things were made by Him; and without Him was not any thing made that was made,” and the Holy Spirit edifies and builds up the body of Christ through the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit.
The Father is called the Father of Lights by the Apostle James. James 1:17 says, “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” James says that every good gift and every perfect gift comes from Him. He is the giver of all things.
When Jesus prayed, He did not pray to Himself, He prayed to the Father. When the disciples asked Him to teach them to pray, He prayed, “Our Father, which art in Heaven,” giving us the example that good things come from the Father. Matthew 6:9-13, “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.” When Jesus prayed, as He often times did, He prayed to the Father. He said, “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me,” John 6:38. It is the Father's will that we will carry out when we are obedient to God. It is through the power of the Holy Spirit and the administration of Christ, but it is the operation of the Father.
The Father is good. That is why James said not to err, after saying the Father gives good gifts; not to attribute evil to God. The Father is not evil, the Father is good. Jesus came to show us the express person or image of the Father. Jesus said to Philip in John 14:9, “Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?”
Some things to learn and remember about the Father are that He is good, the Father is love, “God is love,” 1 John 4:8, the Father cares and sends good and perfect gifts to us, and we are His children.
The mentality of the world has been that God sends evil upon mankind. Jesus refuted this thought when He said, “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask?” Luke 11:13 and “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?” Matthew 7:11.
Jesus was saying, in essence, how could we look at earthly man, being as evil as he is, and believe he could give good gifts, but then think God does not give good gifts?
Jesus Christ is the second person of the Godhead. He is Deity. The scriptures say, “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God,” Philippians 2:6. Thomas, upon discovering that Jesus indeed was resurrected, said, “My Lord and my God,” John 20:28. In
Matthew 1:23, Jesus is called Emmanuel, meaning “God with us.” Jesus Christ is the Word made flesh and the Word is God. John 1:1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” He is God come to earth. He said, “Before Abraham was, I AM,” John 8:58. There are innumerable scriptural confirmations that Jesus Christ is God, God the Son.
He is the administrator and He is in submission to the Father. In 1 Corinthians 11:3, “But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God,” we see Paul talking about man being the head of the woman. The Father is the head of Christ, even so Christ is the head of man and man is the head of the woman. We again see a distinction between the Father and the Son.
Jesus Christ is our friend. John 15:14, “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.” He is close to us and understands our infirmities and is touched by them. Hebrews 4:15, “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” God came in the form of man to understand the plight of man and redeem him. Jesus Christ is God taking on the form of human flesh. The Word of God says that He was in all points tempted like as we are. In other words, He knows what you and I are going through. He is someone we can talk to.
When we have a need and we're asking for something we go to the Father, but when we want a friend we can talk to Jesus. We can share our burdens with Him. He carried our burdens, sorrows, sicknesses and infirmities. Isaiah 53:4-5, “Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.” He knows what it's like to be in this earthly tabernacle we are in and we can talk with Him about what we're going through and through the person of the Holy Spirit, He comforts us.
The Holy Spirit is in submission to Jesus Christ and proceeds both from the Father and the Son. John 15:26, “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me.”
Jesus Christ came with the ministry of reconciliation. Colossians 1:20, “And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.” He came to set us free from the power of the devil. “For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, the he might destroy the works of the devil,” 1 John 3:8. He is the only one who can break the seal in Chapter 5 of the book of Revelation.
It is through Him that we gain access to the Father. John 14:6, “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
Even though He is God, only the Father knows the times and the seasons, not the Son. Matthew 24:36, "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only."
It is His book in Heaven in which our names are written (when we receive Him) which will determine whether we have eternal life. Revelation 13:8, “And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” He is the Savior of the world, the Lamb of God. Blessed be His name forever and ever!
The Holy Spirit is called the Comforter in John 14:16, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.” The Greek word for Comforter is Parakletos, which means our teacher, our guide or our comforter and our helper. He comforts us on Christ's behalf when we are going through sorrowful times, trials and tribulations. When we are not understood by people, He understands us. He sees our hurts and comes to us in a supernatural way.
The Holy Spirit is also our teacher who leads us into all truth. John 16:13, "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come." He provides the anointing that teaches us, 1 John 2:27, "But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him." He illuminates and enlightens, Ephesians 1:18, "The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints," and He reveals all truth to believers who trust in the work of Jesus Christ as opposed to their own works.
He guides us by revealing God's will to us, giving us the plan and revealing to us the timing in which we are to initiate His plan. He guides us into God's blessings for not only ourselves but also those to whom we are called to minister.
The Holy Spirit also helps us in the endeavors, plans and responsibilities that He leads us to. He helps us with His power, He helps us with one of the seven anointings that He carries. The seven anointings of the Holy Spirit are the seven eyes of the Lamb which are listed in Isaiah 11:1-3 and they are as follows: the spirit of wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, fear of the Lord, and quick understanding in the fear of the Lord (meaning quick understanding as a result of, or the awareness of and respect for, the Lord). In other words, a healthy fear and respect for God will help one to abide with humility in the Lord, helping to unlock the virtue of the Holy Spirit through their life.
The supernatural comfort of the Holy Spirit is incomparable and cannot be duplicated by any natural source such as drugs or other substitute counterfeits that Satan would try to give to mankind in place of the genuine comfort and peace of God. Philippians 4:7, “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
He is there beside us and in us at all times. He is abiding with us. John 14:16, “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever.” When we accept Christ's forgiveness and are washed by the blood of Christ, the Holy Spirit performs an operation on us. Colossians 2:11, “In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ.”
He is the Living Waters, John 7:38-39, "He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified,” and the well springing up. John 4:14, “But whosoever * drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.” He is the one that gives us the living waters and gives the fulfillment to the hunger and desire that we have and the life that we long for within our being.
To the woman at the well, Jesus said that if she knew who it was who talked with her, she would ask Him to give her a drink of water so that she would never thirst again. John 4:10, “Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.” Jesus was referring to the Holy Spirit. Inside of every man and woman there is a hunger for an infilling of love that can only be given by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit teaches us and guides us through God's word John 14:26, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you,” 1 John 2:27, “But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him,” and Luke 12:12, “For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.” We can talk to the Holy Spirit about guidance, where we should go and what we should do, asking for an inward witness concerning different matters.
Once one is filled with the Spirit of God, nothing else will do, everything else is inferior. To those who are filled with God's Spirit, it is baffling to the understanding when we see people carrying out their lives without Christ, missing out on the beauty of knowing God and being filled with the Holy Spirit. Thank you Jesus for the Holy Spirit, evermore, fill us Father in Jesus' name. Luke 11:13, “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?”
It is the Holy Spirit that gives us dunamis (miraculous) power, Acts 1:8, “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth,” and enables us to perform miracles, signs and wonders. The nine gifts of the Spirit, 1 Corinthians 12:7-10, “But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues,” and nine fruits of the Spirit, Galatians 5:22-23, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance,” operate from the Holy Spirit.
“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one,” 1 John 5:7. There is one God the Father and one Lord Jesus Christ and one Holy Ghost. 1 Corinthians 8:6, “But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him,” and Ephesians 4:3-6, “Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”
There are three separate persons in divine individuality and divine plurality. The Father is called God, 1 Corinthians 8:6, the Son is called God, Isaiah 9:6-7, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever,” and Hebrews 1:8, “But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever,” and the Holy Spirit is called God in Acts 5:3-4, “But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God,” and collectively they are all spoken of as one God because of their perfect union.
In the Hebrew, the word Elohiym is the word for God in Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth,” and in over 2,700 other places in the Old Testament.
It is a uni-plural noun meaning collective oneness. It is the same word used in the Hebrew when referring to the two becoming one flesh in Genesis 2:24, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh,” and if the Father and Son were numerically one, how could the Father know things that Jesus Christ didn't know? Mark 13:32, “But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.”
Two and three persons are mentioned in the introductions to New Testament books.
Romans 1:1-4, "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.”
Romans 1:7, “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
1 Corinthians 1:3, “Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.”
James 1:1, “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting.”
1 Peter 1:1-3, “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."
2 John 1:3, “Grace be with you, mercy, and peace, from God the Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Father, in truth and love.”
Revelation 1:1-6, “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand. John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” and many more.
Everything in this study shows in brief the tri-unity/oneness of God.
Far more elaborate studies can and should be made.