Pursuing Answers to Questions of Faith & Life

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Ravi Zacharias - The Trinity and Non-Contradiction - Penn State 2005

This is a very interesting discussion of the Trinity - once it gets started, that is. There are some very good points and lines from it. I'm wondering what stands out to you in it?

I especially like the point about Love. If God is love, then how could He "BE" love apart from the creation of other things? In all other religious systems, Ravi claims, Created Life must exist before God or the divine could Love--however, in the majesty of the Trinity--love is made possible in God Himself totally independent of Life or any created thing.

What do you think?


kbfromec said...

I watched this video and I guess I remain confused. When he says, "it is not a mathematical issue", that seems like a scapegoat to remain vague. What he means is, the nature of God does not need to be objective. This bothers me. I lay out some very simple objections to the logic of the Trinity based on simple rules of grammar. You can read it here: God is Not an Adjective: The Trinity Examined.

Please read, let me know if you disagree. Thank you!

Kelly Reed said...


Thanks for stopping by. I've read your post and did have some thoughts. After visiting your blog, I suspect from the positions and points you were making, which your blogroll also gives evidence for, that you would consider yourself a Oneness Pentecostal.

If this is accurate, there's far too much written debating those differences that I won't get into.

So a few thoughts...

One of Ravi’s strongest points is the idea that God’s Being, His Nature is on a higher plane of existence. I consider this beyond debate. He is eternal, we are not. He is infinite, we are finite. He is Holy, we are not. Everything about Him is beyond our sphere of existence and experience. But with this higher existence and being, with this greater dimension comes Greater Complexity—in other words… more things are possible in ways that will not be able to predict or understand.

Isaiah 55:8-9 & 1 Corinthians 1 highlight some of this.

If I demand that the Infinite God must be contained and fully understood by my finite mind, then He ceases to be infinite and ceases to be God. Our limited Logic is not the measure of truth. God Himself is incomprehensible except through what He reveals of Himself. Even His Glory is too much for us to look at, lest it overwhelm and kill us. His Nature, the full expression of His being is only known in part—what we now know in part—the future promise is that then we will fully know as we are know—1 Corinthians 13:12.

Since my mind cannot fully comprehend His Being and nature, my tongue will never be able to fully explain who He is. In other words, since we have no experience of the infinite, our language has no frame of reference to describe it. Neither simple, nor complex rules of grammar will pull it off. It’s like trying to describe a color that the human eye cannot perceive. Attempts to describe something beyond our ability will be inadequate and never be perfect. Perfect clarity that you ask for will not come. That does not, however, negate the truth of it.

The Trinity is not the only idea or concept that is difficult to describe or comprehend. Jesus in orthodox Christianity is considered the God-Man… 100% God or Divine and 100% Man or Human. This dual nature in one person is difficult to comprehend and work out. We try to dissect that and figure it out but cannot do it satisfactorily. But all we can say for sure is that “all the fullness of deity lives in bodily form”—Colossians 2:9

We have things in science that are described with a similar dual nature (again, even this is not a perfect analogy). Light is described as having two natures and observable behaviors—particles and waves. It is not understood as an either/or, but a both/and.

Consider geometry. When we attempt to describe or graph 3 Dimensional space we give the dimensions values of Length, Width & Height. If you isolate one point of space to ascertain its value, this one point will have/be simultaneously a value of all 3 dimensions. To remove any one value will collapse the three dimensional space down to 2 dimensions.

I hope this adds to the discussion. Thank you for stopping in and contributing your thoughts. I’ll be adding a link in your comments as well to hopefully continue.

kbfromec said...


Posted a reply back on my blog: http://kburzy.com/2012/03/12/god-is-not-an-adjective-the-trinity-examined/#comments

Thanks again for your time!