Thomas answered him, 'My Lord and my God!' Jesus said to him, 'Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.' - John 20:28-29
Most Christian churches would today affirm their belief in the Trinity – that idea that Almighty God exists in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Some even have that as part of their church's name. Yet, if they know the scriptures, they would also acknowledge that the word "Trinity" does not occur in the Bible. Indeed, they might even acknowledge that the concept of the Trinity developed over time and that it was some centuries before the church came to fully embrace it as a foundational expression of Christian orthodoxy. That it took the church several centuries before coming to formally embrace the idea of a Triune God is often used as an argument against the teaching, but I would see it just the opposite. The fact that the church was slow, or reticent, to embrace the concept of the Trinity supports the notion that this was not a teaching that the church WANTED to embrace. After all, "One God in three persons" – how does that make any sense? It is almost impossible to explain. Certainly no one in his or her right mind would choose this as a teaching of the church. If one were starting a new religion, one would certainly not choose to teach as foundational something that is unexplainable.
So how did we end up with the Trinity? We ended up with the Trinity because the early church fathers – like ourselves – were intent upon being good students of the scriptures. And, dislike it as they may, an examination of the scriptures led them to the undeniable fact that Jesus was not like any other man, that Jesus was not just some created being or even the apex of God's creation. Rather, Jesus – the second person of this triune God…the eternal Son of God – was the Creator of the world (Colossians 1:16-17). The Old Testament scriptures (and the book of Isaiah in particular) affirm again and again that there is only ONE God (Isaiah 45:5), ONE Creator (Isaiah 40:28) and ONE Savior (Isaiah 43:11), and that God's name is "the LORD" (Yahweh, or Jehovah). Yet Jesus is affirmed in the New Testament as being all these things: God, creator and savior. In Isaiah 44:6, the LORD God said of himself, "I am the first and the last; besides me there is no god." Yet it is this same description (the first and the last) that is used for Jesus in Revelation 1 when Jesus, appearing in great glory, says of himself "I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore" (Revelation 1:17-18).
In short, the church was DRIVEN to its conclusion (codified at the Council of Nicaea in 325 A.D.). It is not that it WANTED to reach that conclusion. It was rather, there was no other conclusion that could be reached while still holding to the authority of scripture.
We at Burning Hearts affirm our belief in the Trinity, as difficult as it may be to grasp.