This Sunday is Holy Trinity Sunday. We give our attention to God’s self-revelation as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – one God in three persons, blessed Trinity. The doctrine of the Holy Trinity can quickly outstrip our understanding, but notice where in the church calendar year this Sunday falls. A quick review of sacred time shows us that we don’t begin with our head in the clouds, philosophizing about the nature of God as Trinity. We begin with a baby.
The church’s new year begins in Advent and Christmas with the anticipation and arrival of God in human form, the Christchild. Jesus reveals himself as God’s Son to the world (Epiphany) and delivers himself for the world (Lent/Holy Week). The Father raises Jesus on the third day (Easter), vindicating Jesus’ claims about his divine sonship. Just last Sunday we celebrated Pentecost, the giving of the Holy Spirit to the church for the sake of gospel proclamation. The Spirit is revealed to be fully God, yet distinguishable as a person within the Godhead.
When we consider the doctrine of the Trinity in this storyline form, we find that God is not trying to blow our minds with confusion or wonder at his transcendence. What God is actually up to is pursuing sinners in order to save. The Father sent the Son who sent the Spirit who sends the church. God is the three-personed pursuit of you and me. The Trinity is not “fuzzy math” claiming that 1+1+1=1. The Holy Trinity is the multiplication of divine love for the world, 1x1x1=1. By any means necessary – word, creation, blood, sweat, tears, water, wine, bread – God will be our God.