Theologica

a bible, theology, politics, news, networking, and discussion site

Father, Son, Holy Ghost... Is This His Essence... His Manifestations? Or Both?

I know many of you probably think I'm a crazy Christian with crazy questions for the people of Theologica. As I study and have discussions with other Christians, these type of questions cross my mind. Someone just commented on my "Did God Create Evil?" post and this question popped up in my mind. We understand that noone created God. But my question is... Have these three persons always been his essence?... Or did he manifest himself into these persons to be what he needed to be to us? Before God created us... What purpose did being Father, Son, Holy Ghost serve as, concerning his essence... Who he was and is... Before anything existed outside of him? 

Views: 199

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

 Maurice; I think that the doctrine of One God, in one person, manifesting Himself differently, in different times  as Father, or as the son, or as the Holy Spirit, is referred to as Modalism: When we were seeing Jesus, there was then no God in Heaven, now, as we experience the Holy Spirit in our lives, there is no God in heaven.

 I understand that the three persons enjoyed one another's fellowship.

John's Gospel introduces Jesus Christ like this: "In the beginning, was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God."

I understand Modalism is the denial of the Trinity. As I'm studying this I'm wondering if these three persons were a necessity versus essence. Were these always his actual qualities or did he manifest them per his will for us?

 

Jack said:

 Maurice; I think that the doctrine of One God, in one person, manifesting Himself differently, in different times  as Father, or as the son, or as the Holy Spirit, is referred to as Modalism: When we were seeing Jesus, there was then no God in Heaven, now, as we experience the Holy Spirit in our lives, there is no God in heaven.

 I understand that the three persons enjoyed one another's fellowship.

John's Gospel introduces Jesus Christ like this: "In the beginning, was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God."

The doctrine of the Trinity is that God is one as to nature, and three as to the personal distinctions in the Godhead. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are inter trinitarian relations that the persons of the Godhead sustain to one another. The doctrine of the Trinity and the Deity of Christ stand or fall together. Son Of God is a title of Deity and denotes sameness of nature as John records, 16 For this reason the Jews persecuted Jesus, and sought to kill Him, because He had done these things on the Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them, "My Father has been working until now, and I have been working." 18 Therefore the Jews sought all the more to kill Him, because He not only broke the Sabbath, but also said that God was His Father, making Himself equal with God. John 5:16-18 (NKJV)
So being Father, Son, Holy Ghost has always been his essence and he foreordained the Son to die for the sins of man and the Holy Ghost to regenerate man? Wow!

Pastor Andre L. Pickens said:
The doctrine of the Trinity is that God is one as to nature, and three as to the personal distinctions in the Godhead. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are inter trinitarian relations that the persons of the Godhead sustain to one another. The doctrine of the Trinity and the Deity of Christ stand or fall together.
Also, scripture says God is love (1 John 4:8,16), but love must have an object.  We think of God's love being expressed towards us, and it is, but who or what was loved before we existed?   Prior to Creation, God was still love, but that love was expressed in and between the three persons of the Trinity.

Theologically speaking the essence of God is not a reference to his manifestation in 3 persons, rather his essence refers to the substance or make-up of his person. The essence of God, then, refers to his immutability, omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, justice, sovereignty, righteousness, love, eternalness, and veracity.

And this essence of God is shared by all 3 persons of the Godhead, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

But to the question which is, has God eternally manifested himself in 3 persons? Well, if they share divine essence as reviewed above, one of which is eternalness, then it is indisputable that they must, too, have been eternal expressions of God.

The essence of God refers to his being, if you say person then it confuses categories. I agree with you that the essence is in all of the attributes so that it is simple and undivided! The attributes are characteristics of the undivided essence. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are individuated points of consciousness within the undivided Being.

Alex Guggenheim said:

Theologically speaking the essence of God is not a reference to his manifestation in 3 persons, rather his essence refers to the substance or make-up of his person. The essence of God, then, refers to his immutability, omniscience, omnipotence, omnipresence, justice, sovereignty, righteousness, love, eternalness, and veracity.

And this essence of God is shared by all 3 persons of the Godhead, God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

But to the question which is, has God eternally manifested himself in 3 persons? Well, if they share divine essence as reviewed above, one of which is eternalness, then it is indisputable that they must, too, have been eternal expressions of God.

In answer to your op, "Is this His Essence?" The essence of God is triune. All of the Godhead is in each of the Persons, and each of the Persons is all of the essence!
Maybe this will help:

We worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity;

 
Neither confounding the persons, nor dividing the substance

For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son and another of the Holy Spirit.

But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit is all one, the glory equal, the majesty co-eternal.

Such as the Father is, such is the Son and such is the Holy Spirit.

The Father uncreate, the Son uncreate, and the Holy Spirit uncreate.

The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible, and the Holy Spirit incomprehensible.

The Father eternal, the Son eternal, and the Holy Spirit eternal.

And yet they are not three eternals, but one eternal.

As also there are not three uncreated nor three incomprehensibles, but one uncreated and one incomprehensible.

So likewise the Father is almighty, the Son almighty, and the Holy Spirit almighty;

And yet they are not three almighties, but one almighty.

So the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God;

And yet they are not three Gods, but one God.

So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord, and the Holy Spirit Lord;

And yet they are not three Lords, but one Lord.

For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity to acknowledge every person by himself to be God and Lord;

so are we forbidden by the catholic religion to say: There are three Gods or three Lords.

The Father is made of none, neither created nor begotten.

The Son is of the Father alone; not made nor created, but begotten.

The Holy Spirit is of the Father and of the Son; neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.

So there is one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons; one Holy Spirit, not three Holy Spirits.

And in this Trinity none is afore, nor after another; none is greater, or less than another.

But the whole three persons are co-eternal, and co-equal.

So that in all things, as aforesaid, the Unity in Trinity and the Trinity in Unity is to be worshipped.

Thank you all for the insightful comments.

The Christian west stresses the Essence, while the Christian east stresses the Persons. Thus from our Paradigm (especially when looking at the Nicene/Constantinople 1 Creed) one will see that the One God is the Father.

We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

 

And so the Essence is the Essence of the Father. The Son is God because He is Eternally Generated from the Father. He is God from God, True Light from True Light, Begotten not made.

 

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages. Light of Light; true God of true God; begotten, not made; of one essence with the Father, by whom all things were made;

The Holy Spirit is God because He proceeds from the Father.

 

And [we believe] in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of Life, who proceeds from the Father; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified;

 

And so both the Son and the Holy Spirit share the Father's Essence for the Father is the Source. In some sectors of the Christian west the Essence is the starting point (the source) and from there they will talk about the Three Persons.

 

Either way, in both systems the Three Persons are co-eternal, meaning they always existed. Maurice, you seem to be saying that God is the Essence as if the Essence is a Person in and of itself and that some how the Essence manifested itself into Three Persons for our sake. If this is what you are saying then you are making the Essence a 4th Person. Not only that, but you are also making the person of the Essence Eternal while the other persons temporal.

 

Trinitarianism in both it's Eastern and Western interpretations is that the Three Persons are co-eternal and One in Essence.

Thanks for the comment.

Jnorm said:

The Christian west stresses the Essence, while the Christian east stresses the Persons. Thus from our Paradigm (especially when looking at the Nicene/Constantinople 1 Creed) one will see that the One God is the Father.

We believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

 

And so the Essence is the Essence of the Father. The Son is God because He is Eternally Generated from the Father. He is God from God, True Light from True Light, Begotten not made.

 

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages. Light of Light; true God of true God; begotten, not made; of one essence with the Father, by whom all things were made;

The Holy Spirit is God because He proceeds from the Father.

 

And [we believe] in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of Life, who proceeds from the Father; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified;

 

And so both the Son and the Holy Spirit share the Father's Essence for the Father is the Source. In some sectors of the Christian west the Essence is the starting point (the source) and from there they will talk about the Three Persons.

 

Either way, in both systems the Three Persons are co-eternal, meaning they always existed. Maurice, you seem to be saying that God is the Essence as if the Essence is a Person in and of itself and that some how the Essence manifested itself into Three Persons for our sake. If this is what you are saying then you are making the Essence a 4th Person. Not only that, but you are also making the person of the Essence Eternal while the other persons temporal.

 

Trinitarianism in both it's Eastern and Western interpretations is that the Three Persons are co-eternal and One in Essence.

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Sponsors

Birthdays

Linkologica

Blog Resources

Arminian Today

Anyabwile

Bock

Called to Communion

Challies

Classical Arminianism

Craig

Christian Answers For The New Age

Christians in Context

Conversation Diary (catholic)

Continuationism.com (marv & scott)

Desiring God blog

DeYoung

First Things

Fr. Stephen (eastern orthodox)

 

Internet Monk

KJV Only Debate (jason s.)

 

Köstenberger

Lisa Robinson - TheoThoughts

Mohler

McKnight

National Catholic Register (catholic)

Parchment & Pen

Pierce

Re-Fundamentals

Resurgence

Roberts

Roger Olson

Taylor

Team Pyro

The Apologist's Pen

Untamed Spirituality

WDTPRS (catholic)

Witherington

 

Theological Resources

BioLogos

Center for Reformed Study and Apologetics

Creeds and Confessions

Christian Classics Ethereal Library

Council of Biblical Manhood and Womenhood (complementarian)

The Center for Bibical Equality (Egalitarian)

Evangelical Theological Society

Monergism.com

Reclaiming the Mind Ministries

Society of Evangelical Arminians

Theopedia

Theological Word of The Day

Tyndale House Bulletin

 

Church History

Early Christian Writings

Glimpes of Church History

 

Christian Traditions

Book of Concord

Catholic.com

Eastern Orthodox

Orthodox Catechism

 

Apologetics

CARM

Lennox

Reasonable Faith

RZIM

Stand to Reason

Tektonics

 

Bible Study

Bible Gateway

Bible Researcher

Blue Letter Bible

Bible.org

IVP New Testament Commentaries Online

 

Online Bible and Theology Education

Biblical Training

The Theology Program

 

Theology and Bible MP3s

Covenant Seminary

263 Theology Questions and Answers

Veritas Forum

 

Theologica Chat Room

MiRC Chat

Badge

Loading…

Get the Widget


Sponsor



Bible Options




© 2014   Created by Michael Patton.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service

/*============================================================================================ /*============================================================================================