In the last ten years I have learned some things about the trinity. First that God is a three-personed God, second that this is His nature and third that this is the heart of our relationship with Him. God as trinity is the answer to Arianism and the solution to legalism.
Many of us would have known the first two things. I had not investigated the trinity much as I had placed it in the too hard basket and was content to let the trinity ‘be’. A small book entitled ‘Trinitarian Conversations’ explains how the trinity is basic to a full understanding of salvation and personal/ community Godliness. The relationship that God is in Himself defines the relationship He has with us and we with Him. In Jesus, we are included in God and by His Spirit with us and in us we participate in the divine nature. This is true sonship. Sonship is not a position or definition. It’s a state of being namely oneness with God.
Thomas Torrance is the theologian who, along with those who followed Him- who have in recent times, unwrapped the simplicity and beauty of our inclusion in God by atonement and incarnation. Our inclusion in God is adamic separation undone and holy communion lived. It makes for the freedom to be us in grace and truth and the ability to be agents of Christ in the Everyday. Our inclusion in God is of the kind of the trinity’s communion with each other. We are enfolded in God in Christ.
This morning I heard a person on ABC Radio National talking about ontology and epistemology, about being and knowing what we know. What we are affects how we see the world; how we see ourselves and how we construct reality. Thus, it is very important to have the Gospel of Jesus, Paul and John and not some alteration/aberration. A distorted concept of being distorts us and our ability to see reality as reality is. As Paul said, ‘Reality is Christ’ but only if our Christ is the Christ of God and not some legal construct.
‘The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life’ John 6.63 NIV. What life are you expressing and what words are you speaking. Martha style work does not advance the Kingdom.
There’s such a thing as dead men talking and dead men working. A curious thing about some Christians is that they are not alive. We must be alive ourselves before we minister spirit and life. People need more than help. They need life. Life in which their spirit is alive and their soul is healthy. We minister life when we are ourselves alive in this living way in union with Christ. Don’t rob the disadvantaged by using them to demonstrate your self-worth to yourself and to others. You are already included in Christ. Begin with your incarnated life.
Baxter Kruger writes,
Justification has so dominated the landscape of Christian thought that adoption has been marginalized. We don't hear much about our adoption at all. We hear a lot about forgiveness, but very little about the staggering reality of our inclusion in Jesus' relationship with his Father in the Spirit.” (1) Thus as Paul says, ‘Christ our life’ is not just words. It’s the state of being that is ours by agreeing with Christ that He has included us in Himself.
(1) C. Baxter Kruger, The Great Dance: The Christian Vision Revisited.