5/23/2013

Trinity: Heresy/Hearsay

(Trinity by Father John Giuliani)

John 16:12-15

Readings
Heresies and errors about the Trinity can be classified in the following way: 1) the unity of the divine nature is denied so that you have some form of tritheism, that is, three gods joined together as some kind of moral unity. 2) Or, a real trinity of persons is denied. This comes in two forms: a) Monarchianism or Modalism: those holding these positions deny a real personal distinction between Father, Son and Holy Spirit. They say that there is only a "rational distinction" between them, or they call them "modes." b) Subordinationism: those holding this position deny implicitly or explicitly the true divinity of the Second and Third Persons, who are creatures and are subordinated to the first person who alone is really God. – http://icucourses.com/pages/025-01-the-trinity-and-the-major-heresies

The root of the word trinity is unity. As I continue to explore what it means to worship and relate to our triune God, I find myself thinking about God as one, manifest in all three roles, without contradiction. I think of God the Father as the divine parent, beyond human gender, who birthed and nurtured all of creation. I think of God the Son, the historical Jesus, as the human portrait of God. I think of the Holy Spirit as the personality of God, both Father and Son, present and interactive in the world today. Within this mystery, I continue to discover that the love of God, the grace of God and the joy of God are synchronized in the Trinity. The notion is more than I can swallow all at once. But it is a concept that I comprehend more deeply as God's story intersects with my life and my world. – Barry Howard, in Christian Century, 5.15.13

I arise today: in the might of Heaven; brightness of Sun;
whiteness of Snow; splendor of Fire; speed of Lightning;
swiftness of Wind; depth of Sea; stability of Earth; firmness of Rock.
I arise today: in the might of God for my piloting;
Power of God for my upholding; Wisdom of God for my guidance;
Eye of God for my foresight; Ear of God for my hearing
Word of God for my utterance; Hand of God for my guardianship;
Path of God for my precedence; Shield of God for my protection;
Host of God for my salvation...
Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ in me,
Christ under me, Christ over me, Christ to the right of me, Christ to the left of me, Christ in lying down, Christ in sitting, Christ in rising up,
Christ in the heart of every person who may think of me!
Christ in the mouth of everyone who may speak to me!
Christ in every eye which may look on me!
Christ in every ear which may hear me!
I arise today: in vast might, invocation of the Trinity
belief in a Threeness; confession of Oneness; meeting in the Creator.
– St. Patrick, The Lorica Prayer, (ca. 377)

Questions:

Is there one part of the Trinity that you feel most connected to? Which one is it? Why? What are the benefits of a Trinitarian theology? What are the difficulties? Is this issue still relevant to the church?

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