Questions & Answers
Is God better understood in 3 ways instead of 3 persons?
When it comes to the doctrine of the trinity, is it the fact that the doctrine describes One God, but understood as three equal persons? Is that what you feel is misleading.? (I always thought it was better to say that God could be understood in three different ways rather than saying three 'persons'- (once I came out of Christian Science that is!).
I think most of our attempts at saying it the "right" way are part of what keep us confused! :) What I find misleading about the doctrine of trinity is the very idea that we can intellectually reason who God is. We understand God because he has revealed himself to us in his son ... and we "understand" Christ because his spirit is within us joining us in union with him. :)
Defining God by a doctrine (even though it may even be composed of some living realities) simply can't be done. We hear a testimony to his reality in the words, but the intent behind the forming of a hard and fast teaching has more to do with conformity than with life. Such an approach may give us the sense of something more concrete in that we gain reinforcement by common consensus, but it ends up missing the whole connection between God and man in Christ.
The Trinity is supposed to EXPLAIN God, and yet it ends up keeping him ALIENATED because it's design seems to make us realize that God is God, man is man ... and so it shall be forever. And this is my BIGGEST beef with the Trinity. For how could there ever be any kind of REAL understanding of God when the very purpose of the "persons" of Christ and the Spirit are negated?
After all, the JOINING of God and man is EXACTLY what happened when Jesus was born, and then in his death and resurrection and the indwelling of the Spirit that same UNION was made a reality in HIM. In other words, how could you ever "explain" Jesus Christ by making his "personage" way beyond us - in the realm of the unreachable God - so that our only hope is to get "closer" to him? No, no, Jesus Christ is the very definition of the UNION between God and man because the Spirit of the living God dwells in man (which is why Paul, John, Peter and the others constantly spoke of this very real deliverance).
We were at one time alienated from God because of sin but Jesus did away with both the sin and the alienation by including that old creation in his death. In rising from the dead he was that lone seed that had sprouted ... bringing forth MUCH fruit. That's US ... for he has become our very life.