I’ve made two introductory posts to this Trinity series (1, 2). Now we get to the guts of it. The first reason why the Trinity makes such a difference is because only if God is Trinity can we truly know God. And because God is Trinity, he also knows us. Stick with me, because this isn’t just a ‘head knowledge’ deal.
We know God and God knows us
Jesus said that the way to know God is to look at him. Anyone who has seen Jesus has seen the Father. We don’t make guesses about God. He’s not an esoteric idea. He is revealed to us in the man Jesus, an actual person who breathed, lived and died. Without Jesus, we’d have some idea of God, but he’s the one in whom God’s fullness dwells, and he lived right here as a human! So if you want to know God, you need go no further than Jesus.
Except there is further to go. Because Jesus sent his Spirit, the Holy Spirit, who is at work in all believers. Jesus calls Christians his ‘body’ and his Spirit lives in them! That’s part of the reason we can say that when we experience love or care in the Christian community, we are experiencing God’s love and care. We know God within the body, empowered by the Spirit.
But if Jesus isn’t actually God, we can’t actually see God. And if the Holy Spirit isn’t God, we have no assurance of experiencing God. See why all three need to be divine?
It works the other way around as well. Of course God knows us because he created us. He knows every hair on your head. But in Jesus, God knows our experiences as well. He’s not the old fuddy duddy up in heaven partying with the angels. He has lived as one of us, experienced life like we experience it. He understands our trials and pain. If Jesus isn’t God, then there’s a prophet who understands us, but not God himself.
The cash value
This should matter to any person for the following reasons:
- God is accessible. If you want to know him, you can. Read a gospel. Attend a church where they talk about Jesus.
- If we are able to know God, then we are able to trust God. Those who are anxious about life or what God is like need only look at how Jesus responded to people.
- Because God knows our situation, we can pray confidently to him. We need not fear that he will be unsympathetic or uncaring.
- In suffering or times of hardship, we can be comforted that there is someone who understands what we are going through.
Tamie Davis is an Aussie living in Tanzania, writing at meetjesusatuni.com.