Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

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Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Wed Jun 24, 2009 9:02 pm

Back when I was a Christian & taught 2nd Grade Sunday School classes in a Lutheran Church I tried to explain the Trinity in a simple way. It went like this. Think of it like your family. Theres your Father who's your Parent. But that he's also your Mothers Husband & not her Father. So he's one thing to you but another thing to your Mother. Yet he's still only one person. Then think about the Love that all of you share. Think that the third aspect of the Trinity is that Love. Admittedly this was a very simple way to try to get accross the concept of the Trinity to 7 year olds. But give me your opinions on how I approached the subject.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by DotNotInOz on Thu Jun 25, 2009 11:42 am

Not bad, Warlord.

The only aspect of it that I'd have a problem with in terms of its being a good representation of beliefs about the nature of the Trinity is that the love felt which makes individuals a family isn't exactly a separate entity as the Holy Spirit is believed to be.

I could be wrong about that, as I admit I'm reaching waaaay back into my misspent Catholic kidhood to recall what I was taught about the Trinity.

But it seems to me that it was always emphasized that as aspects of Deity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit were separate entities, not two beings and an emotion. That "Three in One" thingy?

How the hell would I know when eminent theologians have argued back and forth about the exact nature of the Trinity for centuries? Yanno?
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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Jun 25, 2009 11:48 am

Not to mention the trinity theory came along SO far after Jesus. Wink

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Jun 25, 2009 11:56 am

In Unity we have our own Doxology. For ye non-Christians who don't sing or know the 'regular' Doxology it is thus: Praise God, from whom all blessings flow! Praise him, all creatures here below! Praise him above ye heavenly host! Praise father, son, and holy ghost!

In Unity we sing Praise God, that good is everywhere! Praise to the love we all may share! The life that thrills in you and me! Praise to the truth that sets us free!

Edit: The Unity Doxology was apparently originally penned by Robert Collier, as I discovered it in The Law of Higher Potential (1947) at http://books.google.com/books?id=6OrEcFQH1U0C&pg=PA176&lpg=PA176&dq=%22praise+god,+that+good+is+everywhere%22&source=bl&ots=gCLY7Y1h7J&sig=A5DUe_G7f4T3ykM-M0_1k15LEy8&hl=en&ei=-p1DSunqF-awtgfAubWqAQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5 .

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by MaineCaptain on Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:03 pm

The second version is quite nice Tiger.

And as to the topic. I was raised vaguely Catholic, I went to Catholic school, but the trinity which is so important, was never discussed in this way.
In a way that you thought to explain it. I did mention it to my mother once, never one to lie she did not have a great explanation and admitted it.
I never thought much a bout it there after, As I grew up I stopped believing the Jesus part of the equation was real, at least as presented by the Church, so it stopped mattering all together Embarassed

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:17 am

The problem I have wit the entire concept of the trinity as Christianity both teaches and believes has nothing to do with father, husband and the different kinds of love given for either the wife/mother or child. Now in and of itself, this concept is not so difficult to understand. It isn't distinctly separate entities, it's a role shift. The concept I've always been given is the idea that the father, the son, and the mother (in this case, what we know of as the holy spirit) are the same, yet distinctly different personages. In other word, the mother is the same person as the son, as well as the father; while the son is the same person as the mother and father, and existing simultaneously in separate forms.


The only logical way I have if understanding the teaching is that my father, my son and I are all the same yet separate persons. And this of course is impossible. Each of us has, (and in the case of my dad, had) the exact characteristics, but in separate bodies. And the simple truth is we don't/didn't. Our physical appearances may have resembled to the point that one could not deny the other, but our interests and tastes differed. We were distinct and separate individuals, the same as the father, the son and the holy spirit are separate and distinct individuals; and as Tiger put it... the concept came so long after the crucifiction of Jesus. My best guess is that it was a cover up to soften the blow of having a polytheistic monotheism.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by gillyflower on Tue Jun 30, 2009 7:19 am

It just never really made sense to me. I was sorry the Arians lost out on the fight because three separate beings makes lots more sense, IMO. I thought they had gotten it right! It was a idea that was very hard for the church to stamp out too. I have a feeling that many Christians who put a heavy emphasis on Jesus say they have a three in one god, but worship as if they have two.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by MaineCaptain on Tue Jun 30, 2009 12:14 pm

And I have noticed at least in the circles I have been in, in the last thirty years, that the emphasis on Jesus has grown. The Father used to be the most important, and now he almost does not exist at all, having been usurped by the son.

I guess that started with the big "Born again" push at the beginning of the 80s later 70s??? At least that's when it hit New York City. Some People got really weird.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:47 pm

MaineCaptain wrote:And I have noticed at least in the circles I have been in, in the last thirty years, that the emphasis on Jesus has grown. The Father used to be the most important, and now he almost does not exist at all, having been usurped by the son.

I guess that started with the big "Born again" push at the beginning of the 80s later 70s??? At least that's when it hit New York City. Some People got really weird.

I've read that the trinity concept was a hotly debated issue within Christianity. For some Jesus actually played a minor part in the movement for they believed he was not divine, but a Moshiach (translated from Hebrew as messiah, or prophet) as promised in Deuteronomy 18, and just another in the long line of Jewish prophets. This makes him no better or worse than Moses, or Ezekiel, and certainly no more important. Nothing that would deserve worshiping as a godhead.

To try to fully explain the differing points of view concerning the divinity of Jesus, ad how this trinity works in the belief in monotheism can make one head for the medicine cabinet for headache relief. Although some Christians today believe that Jesus was fully human, although devoid of sin, others believe the humanity was dissolved by the divine, and even others believe he was never fully human, but only gave the appearance of being human. This leads off onto different paths however that isn't a part of the O/P, and should be left alone for the purposes of this thread; but the question that lingers is that if Jesus was fully human, where the hell did the original sin go?

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:36 am

Someone on a christian forum site actually gave me this analogy of the trinity:

A sandwich. . . . . . . A SANDWICH!!! Basically, two pieces of bread and meat. Each seperate, but one sandwich. Rolling Eyes
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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:37 am

LoLFlag LMAO!!!

The sandwich WINS the trinity.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Wed Jul 01, 2009 10:01 am

DeavonReye wrote:Someone on a christian forum site actually gave me this analogy of the trinity:

A sandwich. . . . . . . A SANDWICH!!! Basically, two pieces of bread and meat. Each seperate, but one sandwich. Rolling Eyes

It's still an inadequate concept however. The meat isn't the bread AND the meat at he same time. The same can be said about the bread.... it isn't meat at the same time. It's Christian interpretation is that Jesus and their god are one in the same. In other words, he had sex with Mary, conceived himself, was born (yet still existed in some heaven) died on the cross (yet was alive in heaven to watch the proceedings) stayed dead for 3 days, yet was still alive in heaven while Jesus lay in the tomb. Now I have no clue how the "holy spirit" serves as a deity. It's job is merely the comforter in the absence of Jesus. No raising the dead, walking on water, giving sight to the blind. Actually, he's a stunt double, or stand in. In any language, under any explanation I've ever heard, the analogy tries to take three separate deities with three separate functions and roll them into one god in order not to be labeled as polytheists. And it just don't work.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by TPaine on Fri Jul 10, 2009 6:16 pm

I find it interesting that the only passage in the Bible than mentions the Trinity is found in 1 John 5:7-8 which, according to the KJV reads:
1Jo 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.
1Jo 5:8 And there are three that bear witness in earth, the spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.

However, the KJV was translated from the second edition of Erasmus' Greek Translation of the New Testament. Erasmus did not include this passage in his first (1519) edition because it did not exist in any Greek manuscript, but in the Vulgate alone. Someone recopied that part of the manuscript added the quote and Erasmus (probably to avoid burning at the stake) added to his second edition. The New International Version translate it as follows:
7For there are three that testify: 8 the[a] Spirit, the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement.

Footnotes:

1. 1 John 5:8 Late manuscripts of the Vulgate testify in heaven: the Father, the Word and the Holy Spirit, and these three are one. 8 And there are three that testify on earth: the (not found in any Greek manuscript before the sixteenth century)

http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1%20John%205:7-8;&version=31;
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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:36 pm

What I've found interesting from all of the excellent replies made here pro & con about the concept of the Trinity. Is that what I asked was what you thought about how I tried to get the concept across to 2nd grade Sunday Schoolers, from back when I was a Christian & had believed in the Trinity. Your opinions on how I tried to explain it in terms they could understand. I didn't mean this thread to be about the truthfulness of falsity of the Trinity. That's a whole different thread.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Beribee on Fri Jul 10, 2009 10:46 pm

Well, warlord, I teach K-2 and I have never even attempted to explain the trinity to any of them! My question to you would be, what was their reaction? Did they seem to understand? Did they ask questions? In my church, we don't even attempt to explain it to them until they are in middle school...and even then, I'm not sure they understand it. I'll give you an A for effort!!! Very Happy

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Sat Jul 11, 2009 10:00 am

Beribee wrote:Well, warlord, I teach K-2 and I have never even attempted to explain the trinity to any of them! My question to you would be, what was their reaction? Did they seem to understand? Did they ask questions? In my church, we don't even attempt to explain it to them until they are in middle school...and even then, I'm not sure they understand it. I'll give you an A for effort!!! Very Happy

It came about when one of the kids asked about it. She was a very curious girl wno would ask a lot of questions. None of them asked any more about it after I answered. I don't know if they got it or not. I was never one to put off answering any questions, even if they caught me by surprise as this one did. I always believed that a teacher answers any question a child asks because if it wasn't important to the child they would've never asked. I just tried to answer it in a age approbiate manner. The week before our Pastor had given a Sermon on the importance of our belief in the Trinity. ( We were Missouri Synod Lutherans then. ) Off the record. I followed this same philosophy of answering questions right away with my own daughter when she was growing up.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Davelaw on Sat Jul 18, 2009 12:29 pm

warlordofks wrote:What I've found interesting from all of the excellent replies made here pro & con about the concept of the Trinity. Is that what I asked was what you thought about how I tried to get the concept across to 2nd grade Sunday Schoolers, from back when I was a Christian & had believed in the Trinity. Your opinions on how I tried to explain it in terms they could understand. I didn't mean this thread to be about the truthfulness of falsity of the Trinity. That's a whole different thread.

I think you did fine; its similiar to st Patrick's allegorical illustration with the Shamrock three leaves but one clover. My own slightly heretical view will be posted shortly.
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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Davelaw on Sat Jul 18, 2009 12:35 pm

Alex, here is my view. God is out side of time and space. When view God that pre-existed time and space -we call him the Father.

However, God deals within time and space. When He does this on a Spiritual Level: He is the Holy Spirit. When He does this on a physical level; He is the Divine Logos who became manifested incarnate as Jesus.

If viewed thru Christians eyes all three can be seen in the first three chapters of Genesis

In the Beginnining -the Father
the Spirit moved-the Spirit
God said-Logos
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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Sat Jul 18, 2009 12:48 pm

warlordofks wrote:What I've found interesting from all of the excellent replies made here pro & con about the concept of the Trinity. Is that what I asked was what you thought about how I tried to get the concept across to 2nd grade Sunday Schoolers, from back when I was a Christian & had believed in the Trinity. Your opinions on how I tried to explain it in terms they could understand. I didn't mean this thread to be about the truthfulness of falsity of the Trinity. That's a whole different thread.

I guess I didn't properly understand you, Alex. I didn't realize you were expecting a critique of your teaching skills, but rather assumed you were looking for something else. That said, I'm in no position to dissect how you taught this concept, or why. The only thing I could give as guidance would be to ask "Did your students understand the concept you presented?" And if so, then why question the methods now?

Why don't you explain to us the real motivation behind the question, and maybe we can get on track with you.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Sat Jul 18, 2009 1:58 pm

John A. Cancienne wrote:
warlordofks wrote:What I've found interesting from all of the excellent replies made here pro & con about the concept of the Trinity. Is that what I asked was what you thought about how I tried to get the concept across to 2nd grade Sunday Schoolers, from back when I was a Christian & had believed in the Trinity. Your opinions on how I tried to explain it in terms they could understand. I didn't mean this thread to be about the truthfulness of falsity of the Trinity. That's a whole different thread.

I guess I didn't properly understand you, Alex. I didn't realize you were expecting a critique of your teaching skills, but rather assumed you were looking for something else. That said, I'm in no position to dissect how you taught this concept, or why. The only thing I could give as guidance would be to ask "Did your students understand the concept you presented?" And if so, then why question the methods now?

Why don't you explain to us the real motivation behind the question, and maybe we can get on track with you.

Recently I was asked by a Christian that when I had been Christian & a Sunday School Teacher what did I teach them about the Trinity/Triune God. And as any teacher, professional or otherwise can tell you 7 year olds can come up with the darndest questions when you least expect it. So I told him what I told them. He told me that I didn't explain it right Theologically.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:37 pm

warlordofks wrote:Recently I was asked by a Christian that when I had been Christian & a Sunday School Teacher what did I teach them about the Trinity/Triune God. And as any teacher, professional or otherwise can tell you 7 year olds can come up with the darndest questions when you least expect it. So I told him what I told them. He told me that I didn't explain it right Theologically.

Sounds like it was a personal issue with this other person. And how many Christians hold different theological view points?! Toss a rock in any direction of the compass, and you'll come up with differing theological points of view, and many within the same denominations! Rolling Eyes I just don't understand the concern now. scratch In order to take any of this personally, IMO, I would need to consider how long ago did you teach that class, how the kids reacted to it, and if it warped any young formative minds. If it happened ages ago, and the kids understood the general idea you presented, and it didn't cause any to have nightmares over it or become a menace to society, then dammit, you did just fine. Otherwise don't let it bother you, and you can tell this other person to go screw him/herself. Evil or Very Mad

Blow Up The nerve of some damned people anyway figuring if you don't believe exactly how they believe then your wrong, and they won't pull any punches letting you know about it.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:49 pm

Blow Up The nerve of some damned people anyway figuring if you don't believe exactly how they believe then your wrong, and they won't pull any punches letting you know about it.

Ditto on the above. Sounds like that other place.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Guest on Sat Jul 18, 2009 2:52 pm

Yep... Sure does.

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by Beribee on Sun Jul 19, 2009 1:56 pm

warlordofks wrote:
Beribee wrote:Well, warlord, I teach K-2 and I have never even attempted to explain the trinity to any of them! My question to you would be, what was their reaction? Did they seem to understand? Did they ask questions? In my church, we don't even attempt to explain it to them until they are in middle school...and even then, I'm not sure they understand it. I'll give you an A for effort!!! Very Happy

It came about when one of the kids asked about it. She was a very curious girl wno would ask a lot of questions. None of them asked any more about it after I answered. I don't know if they got it or not. I was never one to put off answering any questions, even if they caught me by surprise as this one did. I always believed that a teacher answers any question a child asks because if it wasn't important to the child they would've never asked. I just tried to answer it in a age approbiate manner. The week before our Pastor had given a Sermon on the importance of our belief in the Trinity. ( We were Missouri Synod Lutherans then. ) Off the record. I followed this same philosophy of answering questions right away with my own daughter when she was growing up.

I agree completely! Our pastor told us that when we get one of those impossible questions to answer, just tell them that you're not sure, but you'll find out for them. Then go to the pastor and let him/her figure it out!! I LOVE that I have that option! I've had a few interesting questions. Once I was asked why God made the sky blue? I said that God must like that color! I was asked a more serious one once when I was teaching upper elementary. A young girl (I think about 9 or 10) asked if her Aunt was going to go to hell when she died because she didn't believe in God (she was kind of freaked out by the whole thing). So I just told her that she could just pray that God would show himself to her aunt before she died. (I have NO idea where that answer came from, it just came out of my mouth before I could really think about it!) She seemed satisfied and far less worried by that answer. I, too, believe in answering a child right away....their imaginations are far to vivid to leave them stewing over things, you know?

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Re: Revisiting the Concept of the Trinity.

Post by TPaine on Sun Jul 19, 2009 2:35 pm

Beribee wrote:

I agree completely! Our pastor told us that when we get one of those impossible questions to answer, just tell them that you're not sure, but you'll find out for them. Then go to the pastor and let him/her figure it out!! I LOVE that I have that option! I've had a few interesting questions. Once I was asked why God made the sky blue? I said that God must like that color! I was asked a more serious one once when I was teaching upper elementary. A young girl (I think about 9 or 10) asked if her Aunt was going to go to hell when she died because she didn't believe in God (she was kind of freaked out by the whole thing). So I just told her that she could just pray that God would show himself to her aunt before she died. (I have NO idea where that answer came from, it just came out of my mouth before I could really think about it!) She seemed satisfied and far less worried by that answer. I, too, believe in answering a child right away....their imaginations are far to vivid to leave them stewing over things, you know?

I guess my greatest problem with Christianity is that it does teach 9 or 10-year-old girls that their aunt will go to Hell because she doesn't believe in God. Had it not been for a wise teacher like you, the poor girl could have been psychologically damaged by worry about someone she loved. IMO, any religion that teaches children that one or more their family members are damned because of their lack of belief, or because they believe in the "wrong" deity is evil.
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