Three persons of Trinity as One God

My Mormon wife is challenging me to find anywhere in the Bible where Father, Son and Holy Spirit are specifically referred to as one God. I know the Trinity can be inferred by stringing different scriptures together, but is there one place in the Bible where you could point at and say, “Right here it says the three members of the Trinity are one God rather than three Gods.”

We can get close.

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit [Matt 28:19]

The verse does not go on to say, “who, by the way, are one God,” but the context is clear.

I just re-read your post - is she saying these are three separate gods? Does she want a verse such as,

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. [Deut 6:4]

No, you won’t find that in the Bible, nor do you need to. The Bible is not a catechism or manual of theology. It is an inspired collection of books which is authentically interpreted – along with Sacred Tradition – by the Church which Christ founded. You can play the same game, by the way. Where does the Bible say that God is three different gods, and list them together as such?

There is none. There is the Johannine Comma (1 John 5:7) which appears in the King James and Douay Bibles that is an explicit declaration of the Trinity and it says this:

“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one” (KJV)

However, this text is highly questionable and is more likely not an authentic part of 1 John, which is why most Bibles today omit it. It appears in only a few Greek manuscripts and none older than the 15th century.

But you must counter her challenge: no there is none, but why should there be? As you said, the Bible in multiple places teaches the necessary doctrines surrounding the Trinity, and that is:

  1. There is one God only.
  2. The Father is God and a Person.
  3. Jesus is God and a Person.
  4. The Holy Spirit is God and a Person.

Requiring you to point to only one place is an artificial restriction and a fallacious argument on her part. It is therefore illogical and invalid.

As an atheist I have always had a problem with the Trinity…it seemed too outlandish.
I brought this up in a discussion with a Catholic lady…she told me to think of a book, it has three dimensions…it has to have all three to be considered a book, take one away and it is no longer a book…so it is with the Trinity.
Darn Catholics, always catching us atheists out :slight_smile:

My Mormon wife says that Father, Son and Holy Ghost are three separate Gods in one Godhead who are mostly one in purpose but aren’t the same Being.

An earlier poster quoted Deuteronomy 6:4 on the uniqueness of God. There being only one God is kind of a big deal throughout the Bible–not just the OT, either; James 2:19 says “You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder” (ESV). So, what do we have?

  1. There is one God. Jesus isn’t God. Maybe the Holy Spirit could be some kind of emanation of God? In any case, it would CLEARLY be blasphemous to worship Jesus, since he isn’t THE God. So, that makes a lot of the Apostles blasphemers.

  2. There are more gods than one, and the Bible just contradicts itself on a major theological point several times.

  3. There is one God, one only, and He manifests himself in three Persons–Father, Son, and Spirit, as is strongly implied by several verses. Yes, this is a mystery, but if you’re going to credit the Bible at all with being the true word of God, then this is the explanation that makes the most sense.

And, yes, I’m a Protestant, but I think the early church councils were absolutely correct to declare dissenting points of view on the Trinity heretical.

The idea that God wears three “masks” is a heresy called modalism. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct divine Persons, not simply manifestations of a single divine Person.

Sorry, didn’t mean to imply that heresy; note that I did say “Persons.” They are three–and yet one.

I did not get the impression that by saying God “manifests” himself in three Persons, the poster was implying modalism. Person is a manifestation of one’s nature, and with God, his nature is manifested in three Persons.

It is difficult to speak with precision of the Trinity, since there is but one nature, with three Persons. One nature means one Being, one entity, one God; the Persons are distinct from one another in their personhood, but not in their nature. They are not separate beings, just distinct persons.

Yeah, that’s where I would point, too: Scripture is very emphatic about God being One, and about the Father being God, the Son being God, and the Spirit being God.

So, either Scripture is incoherent, or God is the Trinity.

JamesCollins #6
My Mormon wife says that Father, Son and Holy Ghost are three separate Gods in one Godhead who are mostly one in purpose but aren’t the same Being.

Why should anyone try to impose their own views on the Sacred Scriptures?

Who gave us the Sacred Scriptures? Christ’s Church.

Who gave us the Church? Christ, the Son of God:
“You are Peter and on this rock I will build My Church.” (Mt 16:18)
“The gates of hell will not prevail against it.”(Mt 16:18)
I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of heaven.” ( Mt 16:19)
“Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven.” (Mt 16:19)

Who is Jesus Christ? He claimed to be Divine and equal in power to the Father (Mt 28:18; Lk 10:22).

He claimed to be God the Son, one in nature with the Father (Mt 16:13-17; Lk 10:22; Mt 11:27).

Deconstructing the Sacred Scriptures, and postulating a hypothetical God have no credibility in reason nor in faith, especially as the reality is so clear.

I will try my hand at mixing things up further. Since The Church is the Mystical Body of Christ is it then Jesus, the Second Person? While on the other hand is it not said that Mary is the foundation of The Church? So, is Mary the form of The Church which is then to be understood as the Mystical Body? This other juxtaposition seems pregnant with possibilities.

mkoopman #13
Since The Church is the Mystical Body of Christ is it then Jesus, the Second Person?

Listen to St Paul for the reality:
"Just as each of us has one body with many different parts, and not all these parts have the same function; just so we, though many in number, form one body in Christ, and each acts as the counterpart of another.” (Romans 12:4-5)

is it not said that Mary is the foundation of The Church?

No. By whom?

So, is Mary the form of The Church which is then to be understood as the Mystical Body?

The Blessed Virgin is part of the Mystical Body of Christ, as the baptized are. Listen to St Paul:
“…for by one Spirit we were all baptised into one body” (1Cor 12:13).
“I am alive or rather not I; it is Christ that lives in Me.” [Gal 2:20].

Supposing God decided to create a human with three souls, one named Susie, one named Georgia, and one named Lonnie. This would be three persons in one nature.

Think that’s possible?

Human beings are composed of body and soul. That is our nature. Three souls would not be a change in person but in nature. The better analogy would be one human being with one soul, expressing itself in three persons. But we cannot experience that because our human nature is expressed as one person only.

(Note that even though we are one human nature and one person, we are one entity only, not two, just as God is one entity only, not three.)

What is wrong with saying we believe in three Gods in One, as long as you mean three Persons? It means that same thing right?

This is the problem of sola scriptua something that is pretty clear in scripture isn’t believed because the exact belief isn’t.

But simple logic

The father is named as god. Jesus refers to his god as father
Jesus is referred to as god, if you understand how Daniel relates to the trial of Jesus you would very clearly see that he is god
Holy Spirit is referred to as god

There are three persons who are god in scripture

Scripture also says that god is one.

Logically if all are true god is three in one.

I may have over simplified it but if you can prove each statement than you can show how scripture tells us it is true.

No, it doesn’t mean the same thing. When you say we believe in three Gods in One, the first part of that is “three Gods.” And we do not believe there are three Gods. There is only one God. God is One Being, one Nature, one Essence, one Entity. There is only one God. But that one God (the answer to What) is perfectly expressed in three Persons. (the answer to Who) The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit do not “share” the divine essence. Each possesses it wholly. One essence, one Being, three Persons.

Firstly, you should ask her where the Bible says that everything must be found in the Bible. Secondly, the Bible is consistent with a number of propositions: there is only one God, the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God, and these three Persons are not each other (i.e. they are distinct from each other). This is what the Trinity states. There is no one verse that states this, but then, you could ask her where is the one verse in the Bible that states the LDS position on the Godhead.

Also, curiously, you could point her to the Book of Mormon, which actually does have explicit references to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit being “one God”. For example:

2 Nephi 31:21
21 And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen.

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