3rd June 2018

Triune Spinner 

“This was the appearance and structure of the wheels. They sparkled like chrysolite, and all four looked alike. Each appeared to be made like a wheel intersecting a wheel.”
Ezekiel 1:16 (NIV UK)

There’s a craze sweeping the youth of the nation. If you’ve interacted with anyone under the age of 20, you probably know what I’m talking about. It’s called a “Fidget Spinner” and it’s pretty simple. There are three spokes spanning from a ring of ball bearings so that when we put thumb and forefinger in place, and flick one of the spokes, the device spins. Suddenly the three distinct spinner tips form a single unified motion. I probably don’t need to tell you that when I first saw this, my mind immediately jumped to—the Trinity.

You see, through the centuries, people have struggled to explain this central mystery of our Christian faith. In Ireland, St. Patrick used a shamrock or three-leaf clover to explain how God was three distinct persons—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—while also being one God being. Others have used scientific descriptions to explain how something could be water, ice, and vapour all at one time. And even on our own programme, You’re included, Professor of Theology at Duke University, Jeremy Begbie, compared the distinctness and oneness of the Trinity with three different notes on a piano that, when struck at the same time, form a unified and single sound.

Now, of course, what we’re doing here is simply a crude signpost pointing toward the true mystery of the Doctrine of the Trinity. As Paul says, “We see through a glass darkly.” We know that each person of the trinity is not three parts of a single object or being that can be made visually to appear as one “God.” That would be heretical and would fall into the category of Partialism, Modalism, or Sabellianism—all heresies which have been corrected through church councils down through the centuries. But what it can do is, by the grace of God, point us toward the truth and so get the conversation started.

We are called to be in the world but not of the world. And that means interacting with culture, finding ways to meet it and explain it. And it just might be that a fidget spinner could be the place to start with someone who has a sneaking suspicion that they need a lot more than a three-pronged toy to give them abundant life.

Prayer
Majestic Father, we have to use mental pictures and analogies to wrap our minds around how you are. Even a toy can approximate as to how we think of you. But, in the end, however we ‘see’ you as an image, or ‘hear’ you as a chord played on an instrument, help us through the Holy Spirit, to comprehend you, your care and concern for each one of us, and above all, your kindness and mercy. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Amen
 

Study by Joe Tkach

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About the Author:
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Contact:
Email: admin@daybyday.org.uk

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