The Triune God Revealed in the Old Testament (part 1)

Other than the teaching of salvation by grace thru faith, the doctrine of the Trinity may be the most important doctrine of the Christian faith.  Some theologians would say that it is the primordial doctrine of Christianity.  Wayne Grudem defines it in his Systematic Theology as follows:  “God eternally exists as three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and each person is fully God, and there is one God.”

Well known passages in the Old Testament (OT) as well as obscure ones reveal the plurality of the Trinity.

Psalm 110:1 is the most frequently quoted passage from the OT in the New Testament (NT).  Here David receives a tremendous revelation from God to be able to write a glimpse of this amazing intra-Trinitarian conversation:  “The Lord says to my Lord:  “Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.”  Jesus challenges the Pharisees in Matthew 22:41-46 to understand that David is referring to two separate persons as “Lord” in Psalm 110.  God the Father says to God the Son, “sit at my right hand.”

David’s revelation continues when he writes in Psalm 45:7 “Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your companions.”  Jesus is the anointed One by the Father when David again reveals the Father and the Son Jesus as God.

The Trinity is also revealed in a less known passage found in Hosea 1:7 “But I will have mercy on the house of Judah, and I will save them by the Lord their God.”  God (Elohim) here is speaking about the Lord (Yahweh) who will save Judah.  The Scripture clearly indicates here that two separate persons can be called God and Lord, that is Father and Son.

In the context of God’s plan of redemption, Isaiah 48:16 has amazing trinitarian implications: “And now the Lord God has sent me, and his Spirit.”  In NT perspective Jesus is the Messiah the One send by the Father.  It follows that in the redemption context of Isaiah 48, the person “me” in verse 16 send by God is Jesus.  If this verse is spoken by Jesus, and I believe it is given its context, we now have all three persons of the Trinity, the Father, the Son Jesus, and the Holy Spirit mentioned in this verse.   Amazing!

The doctrine of the Trinity is a blessing for us because by understanding it we understand God’s plan of redemption and how each person of the Trinity is involved in each aspect of salvation.  We will never grasp how God can co-exist in three persons and be One God, but if we are to believe the Bible, we must accept this doctrine.  CS Lewis attested its validity when he said that such a doctrine could never be made up by a human mind.  No one could have come up with this type of idea if it wasn’t for the revelation given in the Bible.

to be continued…

8 comments on “The Triune God Revealed in the Old Testament (part 1)

    • Welcome to the blog Ionatan and God bless you! Good observation!

      When you study triadology, that aspect of theology that attempts to characterize the Trinity you can find lots of extra biblical evidence for the Trinity.

      However, most of the examples given are obviously insufficient to characterize God.

      I used to think of the three physical states as a way to explain the Trinity until I realized that each physical state does not share the properties of the other two states. For example water in its gas state (vapor) is easily compressible and pressurized, but this is not the case with ice.

      However, all persons of the Trinity share the same attributes and characteristics. Example: The Holy Spirit is omnipresent just like the Father. Psalm 139:7 “Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence?”

      I am still looking for an example in our Universe to fully and adquately represent the Trinity but I cannot find it 🙂

      Until the day when we will see Him face to face

    • Actually the best way to discribe the relationship between God and Jesus is already done for us in the Bible; Father and Son – not brothers, not twins, not indentical twins, and not even solid, liquid, and gas, just Father and Son. It does not get any simpler than that.

  1. The phrase in Ps 110 “sit at my right hand” does not suggest trinity or duality, but merely being placed in a position of strength and trust. Note the verse does not say ‘share the throne with me’ as one might think if indeed structured to teach the nature of God as you suggest it does.

    • Thanks for the visit. I see you hold a non-trinitarian view.

      Regarding sharing the throne, the Christ does share the throne with the Father. Isaiah sees God high and exalted in his vision in chapter 6. And John confirms that the person that Isaiah saw on the throne was Jesus: “Isaiah said these things because he saw his glory and spoke of him.” John 12:41

      • The comment is based on Ps 110. Where LORD (Jehovah, or Yahweh) says to Lord (Adonai). If equal and speaking that way it would certainly be rendered and structured differently.
        It is obvious the two ‘lords’ are not equal. If read the way it was written in Hebrew and translated more honestly there is no ambiguity or confusion at all.
        The thought that Christ occupies or sits on a throne certainly does not make him equal. The Kings of Israel were spoken of as sitting on God’s throne. They were not God. This merely indicates authority conferred upon them by God. Moses was even spoken of as a god, that did not make him god.

      • But the person on the throne in Isaiah 6 was God.

        Isaiah sees the Lord Adonai in verse 1, and in verse 3 the Seraphim refer to Him as Lord Yahweh.

        Again, in verse 5 Isaiah states he has seen The Lord Yahweh.

        John explains that Jesus is that person whom Isaiah saw (John 12:41)

  2. Pingback: The Triune God Revealed in the Old Testament (part 2) « Delight in Truth

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