GOD’S UNITY AND TRIUNITY
The Definition of GOD’s Unity
“Unity” literally means “oneness.” God is one Being, in contrast to
many beings. There is one and only one God (monotheisms) as opposed to
many gods (polytheism).
There are three related words that should be distinguished:
1. Unity - There are not two or more gods.
2. Simplicity - There are not two or more parts in God.
3. Tri-unity - There is three persons in the one God.
All members of the Trinity are equal in essence, but they do not have the
same roles. It is heresy (called subordinationism) to affirm that there is an
ontological subordination of one member of the Trinity to another, since
they are identical in essence. Nonetheless, it is clear that there is a
functional subordination; that is, not only does each member have a
different function or role, but some functions are also subordinate to
(cf. 1 Cor. 15:24-28) An example of this would be in Galatians 3:28 and
We worship a GOD who is tri-une in nature and co-equal and co-eternal.
Possessing all the same attributes, some examples are:
1. Eternal Existence-
Father: Psalm 90:2
Son: Alpha and Omega, First and Last, etc.: Rev 1:8, 17;
John 1:2; Micah 5:2;
Spirit: Hebrews 9:14
2. Infinite Power-
Father: 1 Peter 1:5
Son: 2 Corinthians 12:9
Spirit: Romans 15:19
Father: Jeremiah 17:10
Son: Revelation 2:23
Spirit: 1 Corinthians 2:11
Father: Jeremiah 23:24
Son: Matthew 18:20
Spirit: Psalm 139:7
Father: Revelation 15:4
Son: Acts 3:14
Spirit: Ephesians 4:30
Father: John 7:28
Son: Revelation 3:7
Spirit: 1 John 5:6
The Biblical Basis for GOD’s Unity
The scriptures affirm God’s absolute unity from the beginning to the
very end. “In the beginning God [not gods] created the heavens and the
earth” (Gen. 1:1). “Hear, O’ Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one”
(Deut. 6:4). “I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no
God.” (Isa. 44:6). “The most important [command], ‘ answered Jesus, ‘is this:
“Hear, O’ Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one”’” (Mark 12:29). “We
know that an idol is nothing at all in the world and that there is no God but
one” (1 Cor. 8:4). “[There is] one God and Father of all, who is over all and
through all and in all” (Eph. 4:6). For there is one God and one mediator
between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (1 Tim. 2:5).
The text could scarcely be clearer: There is one and only one
God, as opposed to more than one. The oneness of the Godhead is one
of the most fundamental teachings of Scripture. A denial of this truth
is a violation of the first commandment.
The Uni-verse Implies that there is only One God
The cosmos was created by God and the cosmos is a universe, not a
multi-verse: It has unity, order, and design throughout. Oneness of universe
implies one Mind behind it; thus, there is but one God. Unity equals oneness
and verse speaks of a sentence or a poem. This is consistent with the
Genesis account, which says GOD spoke the world into existence.
Biblical Basis for Tri-unity
A. There is only one God (Deut. 6:4).
B. Three Persons are called God.
1. The Father is God
2. The Son is God
3. The Holy Spirit is God
C. All three are distinct Persons
1. The Father is a Person
2. The Son is a Person
3. The Holy Spirit is a Person
D. Hence, there are three distinct Persons in one God=the Trinity.
The Father is God
1. Apostles greeted by acknowledging the Father as God. (Rom. 1:7)
2. He raised Christ from the dead. (Gal. 1:1)
3. He is the Father of Christ and God of comfort. (2 Cor. 1:3)
The Son is God
1. He claimed to be the “I AM” (John 8:58). (cf. Exodus 3:14)
2. He forgave sins which only God can do (Mark 2:5-7).
3. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and
the Word was God” (John 1:1).
4. God was manifested in the flesh (1 Tim. 3:16).
5. He asked His disciples to pray in His Name (John 14:13).
6. The New Testament calls Him God (John 20:28; Rom. 9:5; Heb. 1:8;
Col. 2:9; Titus 2:13).
The Holy Spirit is God
1. He has the names of God (God- 1Cor. 3:16; Lord- 2Cor. 3:17).
2. He has the attributes of God (eternal-Heb. 9:14; omnipresence-
Psalms 139:7; omniscience- 1 Cor. 2:11; holiness- Eph. 4:30).
3. He performs the acts of God (creating- gen. 1:2; Psalms 104:30;
redeeming- Eph. 4;30; doing miracles- Heb. 2;4; giving supernatural
gifts- 1 Cor. 12:4-11).
4. He is associated with God in benedictions (2 Cor. 13:14).
5. He is associated with God in prayers (Jude 1:20).
6. He is called God (Acts 5:3-4).
7. He has the glory of God (2 Cor. 3:18).
Person = one with a mind, will, and feeling
(He can think choose, and feel)
1. The Father is a Person
a. He has a mind (Matthew 6:32)
b. He can choose (Matthew 6:9-10)
c. He can feel (Gen. 6:6)
2. The Son is a Person
a. He has a mind (John 2:25)
b. He can choose (John 10:18)
c. He can feel (John 11:35)
3. The Holy Spirit is a Person
a. He has a mind (John 14;26)
b. He can choose (1 Cor. 12 :11)
c. He can feel (Eph. 4:30)
d. He speaks (Acts 13:2)
Trinity in the Old Testament
Deuteronomy 6:4 says, “Sh’ma, Yisra’el! ADONAI Eloheinu, ADONAI
echad. “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one!””
The word echad implies a united one or a compound unity.
1. Genesis 2:24- “therefore a man shall leave his father and mother
and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one (echad) flesh”.
2. Genesis 11:6- “ and the LORD said, “indeed the people are one and
they all have one (echad) language, and this is what they begin to
do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from
Plurality of Persons in the Old Testament
Elohim is used for God 2,570 times in the Old Testament. The literal
meaning is “the powerful ones” or “gods” (cf. Exodus 20:3).
Adonai is used 449 times in the Old Testament and its literal meaning
is “My Lords”.
1. Genesis 1:26, 27- then God said, “let us make man in our image,
according to our likeness”…. Verse 27…so God created man in His
own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female
He created them.
2. Genesis 3:22- then the LORD God said, “behold the man has
become like one of Us…
3. Genesis 11:7- “come let Us go down and there confuse their
language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.”
4. Isaiah 44:6- “thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his
redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last;
and beside me there is no God”.
5. Isaiah 9:6- “Mighty God”
6. Micah 5:2- Person who will be born is from eternity. (cf. Psalm
Trinity in the New Testament
Jesus quoted the Sh’ma in Mark 12:29… “Hear, O’ Israel, the LORD
our God, the LORD is one.” One is this verse “hen”, which means one in
essence or nature. In John 10:30, Jesus says, “I and my father are one
(hen- in essence)”. Hen must be distinguished from heis, which speaks of
1. Matthews 28:19- “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing
in the name (singular) of the Father, and of the son, and of the
2. 2 Corinthians 13:14- The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the
love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost be with you all.
3. Luke 3:21,22- Jesus also being baptized, and praying , the heavens
were opened… and the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape like
a dove upon Him, and a voice came from heaven, which said, “ thou
art my beloved son; in thee I am well pleased”.
Some Heresies on the Trinity (and biblical responses)
1. Tri-theism- there is three gods in one God. (John 17:3; Isaiah
2. Modalism- there is three modes or roles played by one person in
God. (John 14:23; John 15:24)
3. Binitarianism- there are only two persons in God (Father and Son;
Holy Spirit is not a person). (John 14:15-16)
4. Patripassionism- the Father suffered on the Cross as well as the
Son. (Isaiah 53:4, 53:10) (Matt. 27:46)
5. Adoptionism- Jesus was only a man adopted (at His baptism) by
God because of Jesus’ divine powers. (Prov. 30:4) (John 1:1)
6. Subordinationalism- the Son is subordinate in nature to the Father.
He is less than fully God. (Isa. 9:6) (Isa. 10:21) (Jer. 32: 18)
7. Arianism- this heresy denies that Jesus is fully God, allowing Him a
created status below God. (John 1:3; Col. 1:16-17)
The Trinity in the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus
The Incarnation of Christ
1. Father: Hebrews 10:5
2. Son: Philippians 2:7
3. Spirit: Luke 1:35
The Death of Christ
1. Father: Psalm 22:15; Romans 8:32; John 3:16
2. Son: John 10:18; Galatians 2:20
3. Spirit: Hebrews 9:14
The Resurrection of Christ
1. Father: Acts 2:24; Romans 6:4
2. Son: John 10:17, 18; John 2:19
3. Spirit 1 Peter 3:18; Romans 8:11
The Indwelling Presence
1. Father: Ephesians 4:6
2. Son: Colossians 1:27
3. Spirit: 1 Corinthians 6:19
(cf. John 4:23, Jesus answered and said to him, “if anyone loves me, he will
keep My word, and My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make
Our home with him.” AMEN.)