Three cheers for the Trinity!

Posted: September 14, 2009 in Theo/Philo



The late theologian Francis Schaeffer talks about the Trinity amongst other things as a means of overcoming the problem of particulars verses universals.

He defines the problem as:
‘In the area of knowledge you have particulars , by which we mean the individual “things” that we see in the world.

At any given moment, I am faced with thousands, indeed, literally millions of particulars, just in what I see with the glance of the eyes. What are the universals which give these particulars meaning? This is the heart of the problem of epistemology and the problem of knowing’

With the Trinity we have a model for universals and particulars in that there is both personal unity and personal diversity within the relationship of the Father,son and holy spirit.

This communication between the three persons of the Trinity, is the model for family, the model for marriage, the model for mans need to be part of a community, the model for communication –as Schaeffer say ‘The reason we know anything is that he is not silent’.

The Trinity also  answers the problem of consciousness as expressed by Ayn Rand :

‘If nothing exists, there can be no consciousness: a consciousness with nothing to be conscious of is a contradiction in terms. A consciousness conscious of nothing but itself is a contradiction in terms: before it could identify itself as consciousness, it had to be conscious of something.’

Prior to the creation event  God was totally alone with nothing else existing then he could not be conscious of anything except himself.
The answer to this problem is that prior to anything existing apart from God -God was in relationship with the members of the trinity-The Father is not the same person as the Son; the Son is not the same person as the Holy Spirit; and the Holy Spirit is not the same person as Father.The Trinity has particulars and universals they are three distinct persons; yet, they are all the one God.


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