What Does The Bible Say About The 'Trinity' ?
The Trinity, or Godhead, is a subject that is a very important part of our
relationship to Christ. Yet the Bible never uses the word 'trinity' and rarely
uses the term Godhead (3 times in the King James version). So is our
understanding of the Trinity, the three in one scripturally correct? What
does the Bible have to say about the 'Oneness' of the Father, Son and
The teaching of the Trinity is not a teaching such as we would find on
the subjects of baptism, marriage, eldership, or many other doctrinal
subjects. Rather the teaching of the Trinity is derived from conclusions
drawn from much scriptural evidence. That makes it no less an important
teaching, but sets a different starting point for a study or defense of the
understanding of the Trinity. We will not find any single passage of
scripture that proves the coexistence of the three persons in one, but
rather a large number of biblical references which do show the singleness
of purpose and nature. You will not find this to be an exhaustive study of
the triune nature of God, but it will show that the Trinitarian teaching of the
person of God is scripturally based.
In Acts 17 :29 we read," Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God,
we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone,
graven by art and man's device."(KJV) or "Being then the children of God,
we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone,
an image formed by the art and thought of man." (NASB) or "Therefore
since we are God's offspring, we should not think that the divine being is
like gold or silver or stone-an image made by man's design and skill. (NIV).
The Greek word, 'theios' appearing here in Acts 17:29 could be defined
as "the power and nature of God" or "divine". It is used here to refer to the
Deity of God.
In Rom. 1:20 we read , For the invisible things of him from the creation of
the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made,
even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse
(KJV) or :For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His
eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being
understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.
(NASB) or For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities-his
eternal power and divine nature-have been clearly seen, being
understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse
Again the Greek word here 'theiotes' from 'theios' refers to the divine
nature of God. The Divinity or Deity of God.
The very same word that appears in Rom. 1:20 also appears in Colos-
sians 2:9 as follows: For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead
bodily. (KJV) or For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form,
(NASB) or For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form,
(NIV). But we see in this passage of scripture, that Christ is the one who
possesses the 'nature of God', the Divinity or Deity!
So we see from the use of the Greek 'theiotes' that the Deity, Divinity, the
nature of God and Christ are one and the same. Are there other passages
of scripture which tell us of the oneness (singleness) of nature of the
Father, Son and Holy Spirit?
Biblical Support For The Doctrine Of The Trinity
One of the first biblical references that show support for the doctrine of the Trinity is found in the first chapter of our Old Testament. The Hebrew word used here (and throughout the Old Testament) is 'Elohim', a plural noun. This word points to the plurality of the persons of the Godhead. This conclusion is further supported by what God says in verse 26 of this same chapter. "Let Us make man in Our image." This same reference is again used in Gen. 3:22.
Isaiah also appears to make reference to the plurality of the Godhead
in using the term 'Adonai'. This also is a plural word for the word Lord. In
48:16, he says that he has been sent "by Adonai (the Lords) and His Spirit".
He had used this same word earlier (6:8,9), when he wrote that he had
heard the voice of 'Adonai'. In Isa. 6:3 it has been argued that the seraphim
cried "Holy, Holy, Holy" due to the triune nature of the Lord.
The New Testament tells us much about the nature of God. We read that
there is only One God and Father (Matt. 19:17; Mark 12:29,32; Jn.8:41,
50, 54; 1 Cor. 8:4-6). And that Jesus Christ is the Son of God (Matt.
16:16-18). We also find that The Father, Son and the Holy Spirit are three
distinct persons. This truth is supported by many different passages. The
Father God, the Son Jesus and the Holy Spirit are named individually
in each of the following scriptures. (Matt. 3:16.17; John 14:16; Matt. 28:
We also see that all three persons of the Godhead share the same
characteristics.. Here is a list of a few of those characteristics
and the scriptural references follow at the end of this paragraph. Omniscient,
one, Omnipresent, truthful, helping, loving, comforting, and having thoughts.
They also can all be lied to or grieved.(Lu.9:47;John 19:28;1
Cor.2:10,11; Psalms 44:21; Mark 13:32; Eph. 4:4-6; 1Cor. 12:4-6;
Psalms 139:7; Job 34: 21; Psalms 33:13; Psalms 31:5;
Matt. 22:16; John 1:14; John 14:16,17; 15: 26; Ex. 18:4;
Mark 9:24; Lu. 1:54; John 14:26; John 15:26; Rom. 15:30;
Gal. 5:22,23; 1 John 4:8; Eph. 5:25; Rom. 8:27;
Ex. 32:14; Rom. 11:34;1Cor. 2:16; Acts 5:1-10;
Eph. 4:30; Mark 14:34; Psalms 78:40)
Scripture also shows that the Holy Spirit is God (See 1 Cor. 6:19 and
2Cor. 3:17.). Even Jesus' references to the coming Helper show that the
Comforter was to work and administer as the Father and Son had (John
14:16,17,26; 15:26; 16:13).
And again, Jesus is God as shown by these passages of scripture; John
14:7-10; John 5:18; 8:19; 10:30; Philippians 2:6.
And finally, we find that The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are used as
though synonymous in scripture as well. See Rom. 8:9 and Acts 5:8-10.
In both of these references, the names are used in the same context and
even with the same phrases.
Without reading the passages of scripture listed above with this study, it
appears to be a rather incomplete work. But if time is taken to look at the
biblical references listed, one would not have a difficult time concluding
what Christians have been believing for centuries........, that indeed God
Elohim is triune in nature, and to profane and dishonor any of the three
persons is to profane and dishonor God! God has set forth by His very
nature a plan and manner of caring for His people which is "beyond our
comprehension". Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!
(See 2Cor. 9:15 and Isaiah 55:8,9.)