Sermons & Devotional Messages

The Forgotten Fundamentals:

The Trinity

The message below is based on quotes and notes from the audio version of a sermon on Ephesians 6:10-17

by Rev. Cliff McManis -- 1-13-08

The doctrine of the Trinity is the most distinct feature of Christianity—there is no religion or belief system that holds to anything similar to it; all other religions hold to basal monotheism, pantheism, modalism or polytheism. Only the Bible teaches that the one true God is an eternal, immutable, social Being of three equal Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Reject the Trinity, and you reject the Bible. Embrace the Trinity, and you embrace the only one, true God of the universe.


Trinity: There is one God who exists as three distinct Persons, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, who are coequal and coeternal and share one nature.

Tri-unity: the basis of the word “Trinity”; three within the one—the 3 Persons are united as 1 God

Eternal: never had a beginning; has always existed; will never end; supersedes time

Person: an intelligent, self-conscious, social soul with a will, emotion and immortality

Foundations of the Doctrine of the Trinity-
1) There is only one God
2) The Father is fully God
3) The Son is fully God
4) The Holy Spirit is fully God
5) The Father is not the Son
6) The Father is not the Holy Spirit
7) The Son is not the Holy Spirit

Bad Math-

The Trinity does NOT say: 1 (god) + 1 (god) + 1 (god) = 1 God

NOR does it say: 1 (Person) + 1 (Person) + 1 (Person) = 1 Person

Rather, it says: 1 (Person) + 1 (Person) + 1 (Person) = 3 Persons…within the 1 God

OR: 1 x 1 x 1 = 1 God

OR: 1 What (being/entity), 3 Whos (self-conscious Persons)

OR: 3 Subjects in 1 Object OR 3 “I’s” (persons) in 1 “It” (essence)


Those who reject the Trinity usually don’t have a problem with the biblical definition of the Trinity but rather they have a problem with

     1) their own distorted definition of the Trinty or

     2) they have a problem with the deity of Christ

Biblical Ingredients of the Trinity-

I. God is transcendent, eternal, infinite and all-glorious

“ ‘My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways,’ declares the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts’ ” (Isaiah 55:8-9)

“Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways.” (Romans 11:33)

“To whom then will you compare God? What image will you compare Him to? (Isaiah 40:18)

“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is too high, I cannot attain to it” (Psalm 139:6)

“Without faith it is impossible to please Him” (Hebrews 11:6)

“we walk by faith not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7)

“we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery” (1 Corinthians 2:7)

“the wisdom of this world is foolishness” (1 Corinthians 3:19)

II. There is only one God
“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one.” (Deuteronomy 6:4)

Presented at Grace Bible Fellowship of Silicon Valley on December 16, 2007

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