The Trinity: Power Demonstrated In Unity
“The Trinity: Power Demonstrated In Unity”
Archbishop Loren Thomas Hines
June 11, 2017
Readings: Exodus 3:1-6, Psalm 93
We look around, we listen to reports from news sources and we wonder what’s wrong with society today. Why is there so much anger, fighting and destruction taking place? To find the answers, we go back to the beginning when God established everything and He created and established everything in unity. If you go through creation, each day was necessary because one supported the other to give the earth the ability to thrive and prosper. Without that unity, nothing could be. All of this was created before God created man because man was given the responsibility to bring about all that God had intended to be on earth. In literal language or understanding, Adam was the first Christ. Be careful how you handle that because I’m being careful in explaining it. Adam was sent by God to keep everything in the order that God established it. God told Adam to cultivate and keep the earth, but before this God said to him, “Be fruitful, multiply and fill the earth, subdue evil and reign. God gave man instructions and directions to keep what He has established in its beauty and perfection. Everything was established in unity. The Father had the vision; that vision was perfect. When that vision was given to the Son to fulfill, He fulfilled it in perfection through the power of the Holy Spirit.
We see in the life of Adam that in the first days – we don’t know how long – everything was perfect. There were no divisions, no sickness and death; only support for everything as created by God. Even when Eve came into the picture, that unity continued and we see that there was tremendous power that brought everything into existence and sustained it, and that power came from unity. When Adam failed, that unity was broken and the consequence was hell on earth. The son of Adam and Eve killed his brother. There was turmoil even in nature; the sun burnt the crops, the weeds killed the plants and so many other wrong things happened because the unity was broken. In the New Testament we are told that a house divided against itself will fall. The Trinity was given to us as an example of how God created and sustained everything. Christ came to restore us back into that unity and oneness with the Father; and yet in our lives today we aren’t paying attention to what the Father is saying. We do our own thing because we’ve been given free will. We can do whatever we want and feel justified. In today’s world, this self-centered right to do whatever we want is causing so much chaos and turmoil, fighting and death.
Unity is necessary to bring us into the fullness of the life God intended us to have, with peace and the provision of His blessings. The New Testament tells us that creation is crying out for the revelation of the sons of God so it can have peace. We are at a time where there is no peace; we ourselves are creating the turmoil because we’re not walking in unity. Why has Christianity failed in taking the world into its fold? It’s probably because there’s no unity among Christians. The Catholics fight the Protestants and vice versa; the Orthodox are against the Catholics and vice versa. The Presbyterians are against the Baptists, the Baptists against the Pentecostals, and so we see this lack of unity, the self-centeredness breaking the most powerful element in our life – the unity that comes from God. Why do we suffer? Because we have pulled ourselves away from that unity with Christ. We see so many things falling apart in our society because we no longer work towards unity. Look at the Trinity; Father was the source of all things. Christ took the vision from the Father in order to show the Father to us. He didn’t speak on His own terms but only spoke what He heard and did only what He saw the Father doing. This is unity. He died to Himself. He was in the flesh like us but He died to His own desires to fulfill the will of the Father and to demonstrate the Father to us. It’s the same with the Holy Spirit; It does not talk of Itself nor glorify Itself, but explains to us and fulfills the work of Christ in our lives. There’s power in this unity to do anything and everything necessary for the glory of God. However, in the world today, we have destroyed this unity because we insist on what we want. Parents want their child to be a doctor or a lawyer, but the child doesn’t want it. As a result, the power of that lineage being passed on doesn’t work and instead of life becoming better, it goes the other way. We don’t have the same respect and honor that we used to have for one another; we don’t respect the opinion of others. We want to destroy everything by the lack of the unity and oneness that God established from the very beginning. The good news is Scriptures tell us that the day will come when unity will be restored (Ephesians 4). It will come. We may not see it yet but it will happen. We can begin ourselves by walking in that unity. It doesn’t mean that we have to agree on everything, but we respect each other and not tear down one another.
John 10:10 speaks clearly that the enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy. This identifies most of Christianity today. We don’t respect others at all; we’re the only ones who have the truth. Someone sent me a story about a man who died and went to heaven where St. Peter took him on a tour of all the beauty of heaven. As they were finishing the tour, the man asked St. Peter. “What’s this wall all about?” St. Peter replied, “Be quiet. The Catholics think they’re the only ones here”. It’s a joke but it shows our divisions and these divisions take away the power that comes from God. We try to do our best in our little corner, but we don’t recognize or give credibility to others who are doing something different but may also be part of God’s plan. So they may not function the same way we do. Maybe God didn’t appoint it to them that way. Or maybe they’re on a growth pattern that we ourselves were in before. Keeping that unity is so vital and important. We see many examples of that unity in Scriptures. We read them today. Christ is fulfilling the will of the Father and the Holy Spirit is empowering Him to fulfill it.
With unity, all things are possible. Look at the vastness of this universe – the power that flowed from the unity of the Godhead brought about this vast ability. Jesus said if we believe, we can do the things He did and even greater. If you’re like me, you’ll say, “I can’t believe that”, and when we do, we break the unity. We will never understand everything, but we must accept the Lord’s Word by faith. If God said it, it will come to pass. We need to be wise enough to accept it because it’s going to happen one day, and if we’re not in unity with it, we may be left out. The book of Revelation talks about the dogs being on the outside. Many of us better learn how to bark because we may find ourselves on the outside. I don’t say that as prophecy; I’m simply stating what Scriptures say. God has given us much but are we listening to what God says rather than to our feelings and emotions? We need to keep that unity because there’s so much power in it. If we keep the unity, we will see peace in the world. When we have peace, the body will heal itself because we don’t allow the divisions, the hatred and bitterness to destroy the power that God has given us. Why are there so many diseases afflicting man today? When I was young, cancer was rare and we didn’t hear of the many diseases that are so prevalent today. You go to a doctor and he asks what medication you’re on. When you say you aren’t on any medication, the doctor won’t believe it. Doctors expect us to be sick and many of us are because we allow so much anger, bitterness and hatred into our lives that we have destroyed the power of the unity from God. That doesn’t mean we have to go around holding hands with everyone. It talks about being of one mind and of one source – God. Everything comes from God except for the things we cause when we separate ourselves from God.
I read an article written in 1970 by a well-respected minister and author of many books which says that God has given us everything and we lack in nothing. We have the ability to be like God because He created us in His image and likeness and we have the ability to perfect what He created us to be. The author specifically talked about man, saying God gave man the ability to be what God intended him to be; that power is resident in man. But if man separates himself from God, he loses the ability to be what God intended him to be, and the more he separates himself from God, the more he becomes effeminate. God created us and empowered us to fulfill His purpose for creating us as long as we’re in unity with Him. We see this in the life of Christ. After His baptism, as He was about to embark on His ministry, He was led to the wilderness to be tempted. There were several reasons for the temptation. It was to be like what Adam faced in the Garden, to test if Christ would conquer the temptation. He overcame. After fasting for 40 days, when the enemy came and asked Him to turn the stone to bread, Jesus said, “Man shall not live on bread alone.” He didn’t deny that He was hungry, but simply stood on the Word of God. It was the unity that gave Him the power to overcome. In all the temptations that He faced, He didn’t follow His own thoughts, didn’t defend Himself. He simply stood on the truth that God established. It brought Him to the position where He could minister the power of God to the people. He could heal the sick, feed the hungry and turn water to wine because He was walking in unity with the Father. Trinity is not only looking at the Godhead and recognizing who the Godhead is. We must also recognize that unity is a pattern that God has established for all creation and mankind. When we break the unity, we lose the blessings of God. Look at Adam; in the first years of his life in the Garden, everything was perfect. But when he failed, immediately there was a curse upon the earth and what he needed had to come from the sweat of his brow. He had to do it on his own and it was difficult and painful. It wasn’t what God intended. When Christ came as the second Adam or the second Christ – you can look at it both ways – He came to restore God’s place in creation. He came to show the power of God, walking in the unity established by God. He only spoke what the Father told Him to speak and did what He saw the Father doing. He struggled in Gethsemane and asked God if He could do the work of salvation another way, but He didn’t fight it and submitted to the will of the Father. He saved the world because He worked in the unity of the Trinity. He fulfilled the will of the Father.
I ask you today, “What is your purpose in life?” Have you taken the time to find out what God wants of you – not what you want but what God has set as a pattern for your life? If you look at Adam, you could see clearly the purpose of his life – to cultivate and keep God’s creation. God said to Adam that all that He created, He created in the unity of the Trinity and He was giving him the responsibility to keep this unity, cultivate it and fill the earth with the unity of God. What are doing with that responsibility today? Are we bringing the beauty of the Kingdom into our lives? Are we living it out so others are affected by it? The Trinity is a witness, an example to us, a pattern for our lives. Marriage takes place because of unity. In marriage, “the two shall become one”, and for as long as there’s unity, the union is perfect. The power of unity is awesome but also a challenge to us to walk in. We say it’s impossible but it is not. Jesus said, “Ask and you shall receive. Seek and you shall find. Knock and it shall be opened unto you”. It’s up to us to desire this unity because God’s not going to force it on us. He doesn’t force things on us but waits for us to submit to Him and His will for our lives.
So on this Trinity Sunday, as we have gone through Easter and what God has given us including the Holy Spirit, we are given the unity of the Kingdom of God. Where is Christ now? He is in us, the hope of glory. Where is the Holy Spirit? We are the temple of the Holy Spirit. The Trinity is within us, if we will only allow it to flow. Scripture says out of our innermost being shall flow rivers of living water. It’s a choice we have to make – will we walk with the Father? Will we listen to Him? Will we let Christ be the hope of our life? Will we listen to the Holy Spirit who strengthens us? All things are possible in the midst of the unity of the Trinity. I believe that in the days ahead of us, there are things coming that are so awesome because God is at work in His Church today. There’s a unity taking place that’s shaking some people. The Orthodox and Rome have made peace. The Lutherans and Rome have made peace. For the first time in history, a Roman Pope has gone to Russia to be accepted by the leader of the Church of Russia. Something is happening. I’m careful when I say this but the major denominations are failing because they have caused division. Denominations aren’t wrong if they maintain unity and a respect for others. Things are changing and I believe what Ephesians 4 tells us will happen because God said “every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord”. The Church prospers the most in the midst of persecution. When 911 happened in the US, on that day all the churches were jampacked because people sought refuge in the Church. When there are no problems, we become complacent.
We’ll have peace, so be aware of the greatness of God and the purpose of your life and maintain the unity. Respect one another. Never mind that you don’t like certain things about others. Let God be God. We are all sons of God. We’re family and in that family, we walk in the ways of God. So let this day speak to us. Let the unity of the Trinity be the witness in our mind of what the Church should be. Don’t see the Church as it is today but what it will be and what God created it to be. We’ve done a lot to change what God has done but let’s re-establish that relationship with Him. Let the Trinity be the guide of our lives. Let’s walk in unity, listen to leadership and do what will give God glory.