God is described with different words in the Bible, a few of which translate
into English as LORD, Lord, the LORD almighty, God, God Almighty and so forth.
When reading these in different places in the Bible, you become aware that
although God is “one” He is also “more than one”—God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit
(Holy Ghost). Together, they are referred to as “the Trinity” or “the Godhead.”
On this page we will provide explanations that help people understand God,
Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Trinity.
God is not so complex that He cannot be understood. The Bible is written so
that anyone can understand Him. The difference is that God is not human, so
He cannot be described as a human can be described. The gods of every other
religion can be described in “normal” terms since they were invented in the
minds of men.* Even some “Christians” (actually Christian cults: www.clarifyingchristianity.com/cult.shtml)
invent their own description of God and make Him seem like these other gods (by
denying the aspect of the Trinity). On this page we will clarify the Trinity so
that you can understand this aspect of God.
* Romans 1:20-23 (chapter 1, verses 20-23)
The Simple Answer
The explanation of the Trinity is so simple that most people miss it. If God,
Jesus, and the Holy Spirit were the same, they would not have different names.
If they were the same, they would not appear separately as they do in Matthew
3:16,17. In spite of being different, they are “one.” (John 10:30) So we
understand that the three “members” of the Trinity are different, but have the
same purpose (and they are all God—more on that later).
A Rough Analogy
About 20 years ago, Dr. Harold Willmington (Liberty University) shared an
analogy he had heard with his students, comparing the Trinity to a book. For
example, a book has length, width, and thickness. The length is not the book’s
width; the width is not the book’s thickness. These three dimensions can be
described separately, yet they are connected together. If you remove one
dimension, you are no longer describing a book. In the same way, the Godhead has
three separate members that are connected together, and if you try to remove one
you no longer have the Godhead.
God Is One
God is described as “one” in Deuteronomy 6:4, 1 Kings 8:60, Isaiah 44:8 and
numerous other passages. For example, Deuteronomy 6:4 says “Hear, O Israel: The
LORD our God, the LORD is one!” The word for “one” is the Hebrew word ‘echad.
(This Old Testament text was originally written in Hebrew). This is the same
Hebrew word that is used for “one” in Genesis 2:24—Therefore a man shall leave
his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one
flesh. In case you haven’t noticed when a man and woman are married they do not
melt into one human being, becoming some sort of hybrid. Yet, they do become
“one.” We could cite other examples, but we have made our point.
God Is More Than One
Genesis 1:26, Genesis 3:22, Genesis 11:7, Isaiah 6:8, and other passages are
examples of conversations within which God uses the word “we” or “us.” However,
God is not referring to any others (people, angels, etc.) in these verses. Since
God is having a conversation, the “we” and “us” must therefore refer to the
Trinity. You might say that God speaks to Himself in the plural form.
The Trinity Is God
Matthew 28:16-20 is a passage referred to as “The Great Commission.” In verse
19, Jesus states, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing
them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, ”Why did
Jesus tell his eleven disciples to baptize people in the names of all three
members of the Trinity? Why not one or two? It is obvious from this passage that
the entire Trinity is God.
Jesus Is God
We understand that many people agree that God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit exist.
(We are sure that God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are relieved to hear that! )
These same people may even agree that God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are
“working together.” However, the followers of several cults are taught that
Jesus is “just a prophet,” or “only the son of God”—not God. This wrong
viewpoint is easily clarified by looking at two Bible verses: Isaiah 9:6, and
It has been thoroughly proven that Isaiah 9:6 is a Messianic Prophecy referring
to Jesus Christ. Notice how Isaiah 43:12 clearly shows that God (YHWH) refers to
himself as God (‘El)—the exact same term (‘El) used to refer to Jesus. There are
numerous other examples, but we will not belabor the point. It is obvious that
God and Jesus are both God.
Jesus Doing What Only God Can Do
Mark chapter 2 opens up with an interesting story about Jesus healing a
paralytic man. Notice that Jesus forgives the man’s sins in verse 5 and the
reaction of the teachers of the law (the religious experts of the day) in verses
6 and 7.
The teachers of the law knew that only God could forgive sin. Since the people
could not “see” sin being forgiven, Jesus proved He did indeed forgive the man’s
sins by supernaturally healing the man’s paralysis (providing visible proof
everyone could see). You can also read about this event in Luke 5:17-26. In both
cases it is obvious that Jesus is God.
Out of the Mouth of Jesus
In Luke 22:70 and John 8:58, Jesus answers questions put to him by the Pharisees
that declare Himself to be on “God’s level.” Notice how Jesus answered their
questions by saying “I am.” (Ego eimi in Greek.) Ego eimi is not a translation
of YHWH, but it is similar to our translating YHWH into “I AM” in English. This
choice of words was not lost on the Jewish audience He was talking to! They
immediately wanted to kill Jesus for blasphemy. That is, the Jews believed that
by comparing Himself to God in that way, that Jesus deserved death. They clearly
understood the implication Jesus was making—that He was the same as God. We hope
that makes sense to you also. To learn more about the Trinity, we recommend
reading the booklet The Holy Trinity by H. A. Ironside.