God the Father
There are three confessions manifested
in the Apostles’ faith.
The first confession is that they
believed in God the Father Almighty, the Creator of the heavens
and the earth (Genesis 1:1); secondly, they confessed that Jesus
Christ the Son of God had given them the remission of their sins;
and the third confession is that they believed that Jesus Christ
was conceived of the Holy Spirit. We must also confess that we believe
in God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, for we must have
the same faith as the Apostles.
For us, the Father is God, just as
the Son and the Holy Spirit are also God. Insofar as the essence
of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit is concerned, they are
all the same God, as our faith in them is the same faith. For instance,
because the Father is the Almighty God, the Son is also the Almighty
God. The three Persons of the Holy Trinity, in other words, are
in their essence the same God. We thus believe accordingly, that
the three Persons of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are
fundamentally and completely one. As such, in order for us to build
the foundation of our faith in the Word of God, we must be anchored
in this Word of truth.
1. From the Old Testament
(1) First of all, the Old Testament
clearly shows that God is one: “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our
God, the LORD is one!” (Deuteronomy 6:4).
(2) At the same time, however, the
Old Testament also tells us unmistakably that God exists in several
persons: “Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our
image, according to Our likeness…” (Genesis 1:26); “‘Come,
let Us go down there and confuse their language, that they
may not understand one another’s speech’” (Genesis 11:7). From
these passages we can see and believe that God exists not in single
person but in multiple persons.
2. From the New Testament
The Father, the Son, and the Holy
Spirit are God to us. But God exists in three independent persons.
This truth is revealed in unequivocal terms also in the New Testament.
(1) That the Father, the Son, and
the Holy Spirit exist as separate persons is clearly evidenced by
the account of Jesus’ baptism that marked the beginning of His ministry:
“When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the
water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the
Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting upon Him. And
suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, ‘This is My beloved Son,
in whom I am well pleased’” (Matthew 3:16-7).
This passage describes the baptism
of Jesus by John the Baptist, when the Triune God is revealed. From
this passage we know that Jesus is the Son of God, that the Holy
Spirit works with Him, and that the Father declared Him to be “His
beloved Son, in whom He is well pleased.” Through these manifestations
the Triune God is revealed. Jesus could fulfill all the righteousness
of God because He took all the sins of mankind with His baptism
received from John. This is why He had to die on the Cross for us,
and this is “the righteousness of God” that the Father fulfilled
through His Son. That Jesus took all our sins on Him by His righteous
act of baptism is the very righteousness of God, and this truth
is affirmed by both the Father and the Holy Spirit. Thus, the Father,
the Son, and the Holy Spirit exist as separate persons, but are
the same God for us.
(2) Matthew 28:19 also reveals that
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are one God, as Jesus commanded
His disciples to “make disciples of all the nations, baptizing
them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”—that
is, in names of the three separate persons of the Trinity.
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The Father, the Son, and the Holy
Spirit are each an independent person, but at the same time they
are the same in that they all are the same God. As such, when we
believe in God, we believe in one God as the united entity of the
God the Father, the Son, and the Holy
Spirit as professed by the Christian faith is the self-existing
God, different from all other deities. Some other religions believe
that Jesus is only one of the many prophets, but this is simply
For us, God is the Father, the Son,
and the Holy Spirit. Despite the fact that this truth is readily
and sufficiently attested by the Scriptures, there are many who
do not realize this. This is so because those who do not know the
gospel of the water and the Spirit approach the concept of Holy
Trinity with their human rationality and logic, which makes them
impossible to understand. Those who are not born again cannot understand
the Triune God. But for those of us who are born again, God the
Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit is our one God, in whom we
place our absolute faith.