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The Trinity and the Church

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The Trinity and The Church
Dirk Weber
DeVry University

The Trinity and The Church
In Christianity no discussion of ecclesiology should begin without addressing the nature of the One who gives the church meaning and purpose. It is the Triune God that brings the church; unity of substance, differentiated in personhood that is understood in perichoretic co-activity. The universal church received God’s full self-revelation in the person and work of Jesus Christ, and God’s Holy Spirit communicates that revelation to us even today. To what purpose? It is in the universal Christian church that God creates a matrix of categorical understanding in Jesus Christ and through the Holy Spirit. Within that Christian context, the universal church becomes the “Body of Christ” where all people from various Christian movements and denominations come together with the purpose of building a society based on relationship instead of wealth, power and glory.
Why did God endure history, transform history, in the first place? The answer goes to the very heart of the Trinitarian relationship; a relationship humanity struggles to explain fully even two millennia after God’s full self-revelation, but humanity begins to understand when the community of faith reflects upon the whole scriptural witness. The passage in the Christian text that most effectively summarizes the relationship between the persons of the Trinity is found in 1 John 4:8, “God is love” (1 Jn. 4:8, New International Version). Love is the very being and essence of the Triune God, and that love constitutes the relationship between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Here, I agree with Torrance (1996, p. 155) that "the divine relationships are intrinsic and constitutive; being a person is being in relationship."
It might then seem that the Trinity’s activity must be differentiated into different “modes” of God’s salvific...

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