Sunday Devotional: For there are three

Genesis 1:26

And God said,
Let us make man
in our image,
after our likeness:

John 5:7

For there are three
that bear record in Heaven,
the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost;
and these three are one.

Jesus baptismToday is the feast day of the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity.
How can three separate persons be one? Through the centuries, our brightest and giftest theologians were unable to plumb the mystery of the Triune Godhead, that —

  • There is but one God (“And God said”, not “And the Gods said”)
  • With three separate persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (“For there are three”)
  • Who made man in their image
  • But the three persons nevertheless are one (“and the three are one”).

Here’s St. Thomas Aquinas on the mystery of the Triune Godhead, in Summa Theologica:

We cannot come to the knowledge of the Trinity by reason alone, that is, by the natural and unaided efforts of the human mind. By our natural reason, we can know that God exists; that he is the First Cause of all; that he is one, infinite, simple, immutable, etc. But that the one God subsists in three really distinct Persons is a truth that can be known only by supernatural means. That is a truth beyond the reach of human reason to know, to prove, or to disprove. We know this truth by divine revelation, and accept it by supernatural faith; we take it upon the authority of God himself. […] By aid of the light of glory the soul in heaven sees God himself clearly and truly.”

And so we accept and we trust.
Holy Trinity
Before He took final leave of His disciples and ascended into Heaven, Jesus said something most intriguing:

I have much more to tell you,
but you cannot bear it now.
But when he comes,
the Spirit of truth,
he will guide you to all truth.”
(John 16:12)

I believe and put my trust in what St. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13:12:

“For now we see in a mirror dimly,
but then face to face.
Now I know in part;
then I shall understand fully,
even as I have been fully understood.”

And so, let us rejoice!
Let us “mend our ways, encourage one another, agree with one another, live in peace” and “Greet one another with a holy kiss.” (2 Corinthians:11-12)
And may the love of God the Father, the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you on this magnificent Sunday!
Eowyn

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marblenecltr
Guest

Thank you for your tested inspirational and informative sermons. You provide essential truths stifled elsewhere, even in some churches.

marblenecltr
Guest

“tested” was typed and intended to be “texted”

marblenecltr
Guest

Reblogged this on necltr and commented:
A commonly omitted part of a well known sentence often used in secular speech but not so intended: “Then said Jesus to those Jews who believed on him, ‘If he continue in my word, then are yet my disciples indeed;'” followed by “‘And he shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.'” John 8: 31,32, KJV

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josephbc69
Guest

I once tried to explain how this could be to a Jehovah’s Witness some 20+ years ago. I showed him my opened hand, palm side up, and said to him [an earnest Christ-seeking young man], “Look, I have only one hand, but it has three parts: my thumb, my fingers, and my palm. It could not be a hand without all three, yet it is but ONE hand!”
He still denied it was possible. So it goes!

MomOfIV
Guest
MomOfIV

It’s possible you planted a seed in his head. Using the hand analogy makes sense.

josephbc69
Guest

Dear MomOfIV: I hope so, as he was an earnest seeker and did not deserve to be worked over by that cult, IMO, although I admire their CO stance in war-time, if they serve as ambulance drivers, etc., as many Quakers also did.

MomOfIV
Guest
MomOfIV

Wonderful devotional, Thank You Dr. Eowyn.

Steven Broiles
Member

St. Thomas Aquinas was correct in his reasoning, that we cannot know this by natural means alone. And Thank God for it. For as it takes Supernatural Revelation or Aid to participate in this Mystery, it is a sort of proof of Christian Revelation. For this standard (for lack of a better word) is unique to Christianity ALONE. I am reminded of the existential philosopher Gabriel Marcel, who opined there are two ways to go, in matters like this or in getting along with other people, and human relationships and the like. We can solve a problem. Once we solve… Read more »

joandarc
Guest
joandarc

Thank you Dr. Eowyn for your beautiful and remarkable post on the Holy Trinity. I thank St. Thomas Aquinas for his brilliant way of communicating the truth of the Holy Trinity which came directly from Our Lord.