Feast of The Holy Trinity
When God gives, nothing is left in the tank
The word Trinity is not found in the Bible. Nor is homoousios which is the key concept that was agreed on at the first ecumenical council at Nicaea in 325. It affirmed that God the Son and God the Father are of the same substance.
We can’t explain the mystery of The Trinity. We wouldn’t even know that the One God is three divine persons, if Jesus hadn’t revealed it to us: Jesus who spoke of his Father in heaven, about himself as the Son, about his going back to heaven and sending the Holy Spirit. Jesus, who commanded us to baptise in the name of the Father/Son/Spirit.
Even though we can’t explain the Trinity, we can learn a lot. What we learn is practical. As God is a society of Persons we are called to model our own living on this society, called Trinity.
First, each divine Person gives completely to the other. When God gives, nothing is left in the tank. This process of self-emptying is necessary for the existence of God, and indeed all life. The ebb and flow that flows out of the heart of God, first flows within God, and from all eternity. Just as God is sheer gratuity, sheer gift – so our lives must be given and gifted to others.
Second, there is complete equality in God. Each Person bows down to each other, to serve the Other.
What does Trinity Sunday teach us? There are two necessary truths about the way we must live together, yet truths that only have meaning if they are practiced together.
- We must only be concerned with the way we give of ourselves to others, but this can only happen if …
- The other person humbly bows down before the other to receive their gift of themselves.
One gives according to the need of the other, defining who they are by how they love. The other humbly accepts the gift of that person. For example, my priesthood is defined by the way I love you. You must have the humility to accept the gift of my love.
Which is harder, the giving or having the humility to accept the gift? This is nothing to do with the exercise of power. This is the dance of creation. Love and humility. Giving and receiving the gift – each receiving the fulness of the other, so that we may have life to the full. This is the way of God and it is the way our society must live. Anything outside of this leads to the disintegration/collapse of society because we are not giving, receiving, and growing in the love of God.
Triune love, God’s love, is a dance of humility and love. All life gushes forth from the creative love of God, and so our lives are created upon the principles of humility and love. It’s not that we prefer one or the other. We are called to dance the dance of creation. We are called to both:
1. To only be concerned with the way we give of ourselves to others;
2. To humbly bows down before the other to receive the gift of them. Amen.
… And of course, forgiveness is required of us who are not so perfect as the Trinity 😊
The Rublev Trinity https://vimeo.com/43437258