Life and Books and Everything
Life and Books and Everything

Episode · 11 months ago

The Trinity and Evangelicalism, with Dr. Scott Swain


In this episode of Life and Books and Everything, Dr. Scott Swain—Professor of Systematic Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary—joins Kevin, Justin, and Collin to discuss his book, The Trinity: An Introduction. Listen in to hear about recent controversies surrounding the doctrine of the trinity, if the Holy Spirit is indeed forgotten in our discussions about the trinity, why analogies for the trinity are unhelpful, and why Orlando is the most magical place on earth.

This episode of Life and Books and Everything is brought to you by Crossway. The Crossway book we want to highlight this week is Covenant Theology: Biblical, Theological, and Historical Perspectives by the faculty at Reformed Theological Seminary. Join a host of twenty-six scholars, including O. Palmer Robertson, Michael J. Kruger, and Scott R. Swain, as they explore how the concept of covenant is clearly taught in Scripture and how it lays the foundation for other doctrines of salvation.

LBE is also excited to announce that listeners of the show can receive 30% off Crossway books, bibles, tracts, audiobooks, and ebooks by signing up for a free Crossway+ membership. Crossway+ is a new membership program designed to provide you with gospel-centered resources aimed at strengthening your faith and serving the church. Registering for a free Crossway+ membership makes it more convenient and affordable than ever to purchase directly from Crossway.


Who is Scott Swain and why is Orlando the greatest and most magical place on earth? [0:00 - 8:40]

Analogies and the trinity [8:40 - 12:10]

20th Century evangelicalism and the doctrine of the trinity [12:10 - 20:45]

What is biblicism? [20:45 - 23:53]

Relations of origin and the persons of the trinity [23:53 - 29:30]

Why we should reject social trinitarianism [29:30 - 31:31]

Is it true that we often forget the Holy Spirit in our discussions of the trinity? [31:31 - 34:55]

The work of the Holy Spirit and revivalistic-charismatic movements [34:55 - 38:21]

A tool-kit of systematic theology categories and terms [38:21 - 49:12]

The drama behind the filioque [49:12 - 50:50]

How should pastors communicate these orthodox categories to their congregations? [50:50 - 57:35]

Resources on the Doctrine of the Trinity:

St. Patrick's Bad Analogies 

The Deep Things of God: How the Trinity Changes Everything by Fred Sanders

The Wonderful Works of God by Herman Bavinck

The Essential Trinity: New Testament Foundations and Practical Relevance by Carl Trueman and Brandon Crowe 

On God and Christ: The Five Theological Orations by Gregory of Nazianzus

Retrieving Eternal Generation by Scott Swain and Fred Sanders

Delighting in the Trinity: An Introduction to the Christian Faith by Michael Reeves

Dogmatic Theology by William Shedd 

Our Triune God: Living in the Love of the Three-in-One by Philip Ryken

The Holy Spirit (Contours of Christian Theology) by Sinclair Ferguson

Is Jesus Truly God?: How the Bible Teaches the Divinity of Christ by Greg Lanier

Itreatings and salutations ar loyallisteners, I think we can put it in the plural. Even now, listeners were gladto have you back with us on life and books and everything we have the bandback together. Justin Taylor, Colin Hanson and I am Kevin dyoung good tohave you with us. We also have a special guest interview with a greatnew book out. We will be introducing him in just a moment, but let me think,as always, our sponsor crossway. They put out lots of good books, includingthe one that we're going to be talking about today. I have neglected tomention that you should look at crossway dot or s lve as in life andbooks, and everything w want to get those letters correct, crossway, lbeand if you go on there justin, you can sign up for some stuff and get somediscounts. I think that's the exact wording of thethe GROMA I not in onter and give them disges yeah scouts. It reminds me of that Mo mostmidwestern of traits. You can never tell somebody you got something unlessyou also tell them how much of a discount on it. So you sign up forcrossway plus through as listeners of life and books and everything, and Ibelieve you get thirty percent offbooks- isn't that the idea through thatprogram? Yes, that is the idea, I believe and you're right. I rememberwhen we moved to Iowa in particular everyone, especially if they had a nicehouse. Well, Oh wow, that's a great house, yeah, crazy story. We got thisthing dirt cheap. It was. You know, someone died in it or something justeveryone was getting a great deal. You want you'd rather be cheap than looklike you're avarice, all right. So what Oh our book? We wantto mention a Crossway Book, Covenant, Theology,Biblical Theological and historical perspectives. This is a big volume of wonderful essays in chapters from theFaculty e erformd theological seminary. I have a smallis chapter. It is theleast among the chapters. It's not false humility. There are really good,as it says, Biblical theologial historical perspectives on covenant.Theology, if you think you know a ton about covenant, Teology, I'm sure youcan learn something from this book. If you don't know anything, there will besome chapters here that will help. You begin to learn something about it andone of the contributors in this book. uncovenant theology published byCrossway, is our special guests for today, Scott Swaying, Scott. Welcome to the program. Heythanks for having me, I did not do my adequate research tolist all of your many titles, but your president of something and professor ofstuff and junk and written a lot of books. So Scott, no he's the PresidentRTS Orlando and teaches systematic deology there and his authored a numberof really good books and we're going to talk about his book. The Trinity Today,but Scott, give us a little bit of introduction about yourself whereyou're from what you do tells about your family as well. Yeah thanks been married to my wife, Lea for nowjust over twenty three years, and we have four kids ranging from age. TwentyI've got a second year college student...

...down to thirteen and they keep us verybusy and Bregus a lot of joy and my day. Job is to work and teach in our TS, Rorlando and love doing that, and what do you teachthere as well as tresidenting? I teac systematic theology same subject as you yeah. I've listened to yours are on theRTSAPP, but mine ar not so I've can crib off of yours. We'll have the change that do you, L doyou? Are you from Florida? Do you like the weather in Orlando? Do you like?Orlando seems like I like everyone? I know who lives in Orlando, which isthey didn't live in Orlando Kevin? That's terrible thing for you tosay, Hi sign up for our TS, Orlando Everyohe's, like Bob Face Rts CharlotteRecruitin God I did come here for this yeah. No. I grew up in Jacksonville Florida,which is a couple of hours north of here yeah, and it is surprisingly adifferent kind of seasonal and everything else. My Dad used to sayit's really south Georgia, but you get to Orlando you're truly in centralFlorida. Were surrounded by lakes and alligators and you make the wrong turnyou could be facing either one of those, but no it's a wonderful place to liveKevin and I'm told that anyone who visits wants to stay here forever. It'ssome Callt, the most wonderful place on earth, tatchol place on earth or stufflike that yeah, I'm truly offended. I didn'trealize we're going this way: kind of a peaceful, friendly interaction. Today.No I ma! Let me let me try a better question. There's Cott orlandos changed a lot in the lasttwenty years. It used to be known very much as a Christian capital, so manyheadquarters of Christian ministries, there, Camp Crusade for Christ being being oneof them. Like aneer, I mean you coal, you could keep keep naming them, butit's become a very progressive international, Yeah City. I think inthe last twe years, or so you describe how that's happened. Maybe how that'saffected your Ministratat RTOS Rorlando yeah. I think that's right. It's it'sone of the fastest growing cities. We got. I think what is now the largestuniversity with UCF here and that's promoted a lot of the growth here,probably says something about it becoming an international city. I do think Floridais kind of a funnystate, the further south you go, probably the more international you get,and so in many ways Orlando is more like a Chicago more like you know la ordeyork whatever. Then it is a Jacksonville where I grew up, and so alot of people come and go you. You O meet people at Church,people beet people out in the workplace, and there are very few people who areborn here. Sometimes very few people who've beenhere more than ten years and just to be clear, I wasn't meaningto throw the the hammer down. I was thinking mainly about the weather thatit seems, like I often being from Michigan here's what I'm getting beingfrom Michigan Orlando Wis, always where you wanted to go great Wenar, you gothere as warm and then I would meet people from there. They SA. Oh, it's it's humid all thetime and Tho seasons, never change, and I thought well. At least at least yougot a good season sort of yeah. That's right, a all of our little. You knowsubcommunities or winter park, winter garden named by Midwesterners, whowanted to move down here because they liked it so much better Han living inthe Midwest Kevin. Well, you could just kind of stop in Charlotte halfway. Iguess all right Scott. The Trinity. This really is a great series that I'm sure Justin hadhis hand in, and this is a great...

...contribution to it short studies andsystematic theology edited by Grahm Colan, Oran Martin, and this is Scott'snew volume that just came out Tho, trendity and introduction. I want tostart with this. Okay. I have two questions before we dive into the bookand we'll see if what Colin and Justin want it want to ask at the outset.Here's my first question say: I'm ten years old, Scott, explain Ta Trinity to me new, I think, for a ten year old. Thebest way to explain it is in the the songs that we seing right. We praise one God from whom our blessings flow,all creatures in heaven, Earth a Denatheresh, but in praising one God wepraise three persons, Father Son and Holy Spirit, and that doesn't give usthree gods and that's a great mystery how one God could be three distinctpersons and not being thregods. But we can't expect to understand the mysterywe adore it. So our songs, our catechisms, the the Baptismal Command of Matthew, twothosand Ad Eidhtnd, nineteen baptize them the name of the Father Sodend HolySpirit. Those are all very good places to start with a ten year old. That'sgood! So is this s? My second question, then: Is there anaw an analogy youwould use with a a ten year old for the Trinity? No, I think, all analogies end up kind of becoming good analogiesfor Trinitarian heresies right, so we either end up thinking of the persons, as maybe being threedifferent phases of God's life like Ice Water, vapor or we end up thinking ofthe the three persons as different parts of a whole and thanks to thecartoon Vultron, we can haw explain what that heresy is. But theproblem with all the analogies right is that we're using things with which were veryfamiliar in terms of creaturly reality and we're trying to describe a God who transcends creaturesand that's where we get into problems. We are made in God'simage, but God is not made in ours, that's good! So I mean we find this allthe time in well, meaning churches and Sunday. Schools Teachers want to helpkids get it, and so they go to you know clovers or water, ice, vaporor apple parts of an apple, and it's just important to say just stay away from the analogiesYeaastin. Unless did we miss an analogy that that you use well? Scott didAugustine get us off on the wrong foot with trinitarian analogies. What was hedoing in his great work on the Trinity? where he's thinking of psychologicalanalogies Tryi to explain it? That's the question. No, I don't think so and if insometimes I gus think it's kind of a bad rap on this, but you know the firstmajor sections of Augustan'e book on the Trinity are devoted to exogeticalarguments for the trinity to talking about Jesus Baptism and how that is a a revelation of the trinity and onlytowards the end of that work. Does he then say well we're made in the imageof the Trinity? Are there vestiges of the trinity in the Human Soul, forexample, and he he does play around with those, but he actually concludeshis argument. Saying none of these really work, there's not a good one toone correspondence and so...

Augustin in, as I said earlier, withjust praising the trion God for revealing itself to us Justin, youhad a good church history question that youmentioned earlier. That would get us going into perhaps the reason scyttwrote this book or one of them yeah. What do you think about twentyethcentury evengilicalism when it comes to the Trinity? What were some, maybe goodcontributions that were made in the twentieth century, obviously extendinginto twenty first century, and perhaps what were some of the misssteps thatgot us off course was it a was a good century. We tend to assume each senturyis building upon the knowledge of previous generations and we'reincreasing our knowledge. Is that the case with Trinitarianism or was not?Was it not a great century? For that doctor great question yea I mean so thetwentiesth century, in terms of broader academic theology, was a time of tryingto revive the doctrin of the Trinity Carl Rotder who's, a Catholictheologian described. I think what is probably true of manyChristians as mere monotheists. They knew it was important to affirm thatGod was a trinity, but they had no idea of of the practical meaning of thedoctrine, and so, following that kind of insight, Roner Bart and otherswanted to restore the importance of the Trinity. For Theology for piety and anumber of evangelicals followed as well- and I think there are some kind ofpositive examples in that regard- packers, knowing God, has some veryrich. I think trinitarian reflections, especially talking about adoption andso forth. Arcy sprowl actually wrote something ofa Trinitarian trilogy with The Holiness of God and then o work on Cristologynewmetology. I read those early on and seminary got really excited aboutthings, and so there's some positive signs. There were probably some not sopositive developments as well as well, and those are that necesarily unique toevangelical theology, but in all the excitement about kind of revivingtrintotne theology, one of the things that theolojust wanted to do asdemonstrate its relevance for every area of life and kind of late twenti century evengelical,felogans found themselves often trying to showthe relevants of the trinity for certain issues relate to Anthropologi.So gender debates- and I remember especially in the sconversations- got really hot, with different sides of evangelicalism,debating certain gender issues and bringing the trinity into those debatesand unfortunately, sometimes the way the trinity was used in those debates.Pretty radically distorted the doctrine and in some ways, left us with a kindof problematic approach to the trinity in the number of our churches, so that leads into the beginning of your book. You say inthe acknowledgments: The proximate cause for the book is the Trinitariancontroversy of two thousand and sixteen read the whole book and that's explicit in a few places. Butit's certainly not. I mean it's just a broad, it's a great book about theTrinity, but that's the proximate cause. Can you explain for our listeners? Whatwas the Trinitarian controversy of two thousand and sixteen and how thatserved as a proximate cause for the book? Yeah sure, so one of the views ofthe trinity that came out of the gender debates was a view specifically aboutthe sun, but implications for the...

...spirit as well. It's a view thatsometimes goes under the label, eternal functional subordination or Ithink the more preferred title by its expotexponents is eternal relations of authority and submission. And in thatview of the Trinity, is we talk about the train? We have tohave bout, God is one God, but we also have to talk about God as threedistinct persons, and the question is: How do we distinguish those persons?And so, according to this view, the way we distinguish the persons is thatcertain persons stand in a relationship of authority to other persons and corresponding to that tdose. Otherpersons stand in a relationship of subordination or submission to thosepersons, and the arbit was is not that they're antologically inferior, sothere's definitely a desire to avoid arianism. But the argument is that the way they aredistinguished personally from each other as by these relations ofauthority and submission- and I think what happened in two thousand- andSixteen was several folks Arto say well, Hey. Ithink that might be problematic in a number of ways. It seems like for onething: That's not how the church historically has distinguished thepersons from each other and secondly, the reason they did' distinguish inthat way is because distinguishing them from each other and that way seems to divide the Godhead in a way that isproblematic, because if you have a person who's an authority, anotherperson who submits it suggests perhaps that they have different wills andhistorically, the churches confessed. One will, in God, one power when wisdom,wand, goodness and so forth, and so a few peoplestarted kind of reaging. The bell on that, and I think that Evangelical Christians is a whole kindof realized. We might have some work to do in terms of this doctrine. Colin, it's probably well. I know that it'snot fair Scott for me to ask you to explain how this broke down alongBaptist and Presbyterian lines, because I don't think it'd be fair to allbaptists to say that they necessarily agreed with eternal functionalsubordinationism. But could you talk perhaps about some of thedistinguishing theological methodologies that may have led to someof that dispute along the lines of Presbyterian critiques and Baptistadvocacy of eternal functional, subordinationism Yeah Yeah? I would be really reticentto distinguish the sides along tedominational lives, because I dothink you could find proponents of eternal functionaboardfunctional subordination on both sides. I think you could find proponents ofwhat ar sometimes called pronysine trenitaranism on both sides as well. Ithink one of the telling distinctions and Christopher Clevelandwrote an article about this and I think he was dead on one place you could find. Thedifference is almost generationally in terms of when somebody got their theologicaltraining and there was perhaps a tendency towarda a Biblicism intrinitary, an theology among advocates of eternal function ofsubordination and theyre among those who wereopposing it. There is probably more of a sense of Bataly. Yes, is scripture,the supreme source of norm for Trinichan Theology, but there isprobably a greater appreciation and a greater desire to recognize that we're not the first ones.Who've read scripture when it comes to...

...this doctrine and that, because it'ssuch a a great and profound doctrine that wewant to be patient and listen to what the Church has said and confessed aboutthis doctrine in attempting to understand scriptureand so tthere was a little bit of agenerational divide, and I think that it breaks down almost into theologicaltraining and yes, theological method. I find no go ahead. Justin I' justgoing to ask I'm thinking of some listeners who may not have gone tosemenaryor t at the word. Biblicism may be a new word for them, or maybeconfusing you don't mean double Col, but what is Bibliu sysm and is thatoverreliance on exa Jesus or is it reading indoscripture? What do you meanexactly by that? Yeah bablicism is something thatsometimes hard to define in is harde debate, but one way I would say is likethis without defining it. Let me put the issue like this. The debate in twothousand- and sixteen was not about whether our triniter and theology needsto be derived from scripture is not debateout, whether it neds to be normedby scripture, but there was probably debate about a relative degree ofconfidence about whether the best method for driving the doctor ind theTranin from scripture is me an my bible me as a baby, a well trained scholarwith a PhD who's taking Greek and Hebrew. Or is it me within the context of the communionof saints me with a kind of an ear to the tradition, attention to thechurches, creeds and confessions and deriving my Docen from scripture withthose AIDS ready to hand? And so both sides are saying absolutely. Ourdoctor must be derived from scripture, but I think Thereis, a relative degreeof you know what weight do we give to ourown individual powers of interpretation? What degree of deference do we give tothe church in its tradition? That's a really good point because we often in in maybe I'm tipping myhand here talking to another sysemetic theology, professor, and we affirm, youknow all the appropriate disciplines, but one of the things that systematictheology can do to help us is provide us with the Church's historic grammarin vocabulary for discussing these things, and so I sometimes start in teaching thetrinity on just laying out from scripture, seven very simple,biblical conclusions: There's One god, the father as God, the Son has got thespirit, is God the father's not to sound the suns up this peer of thespers Ot, the folhow. You make those seven statements and say we know thegrammar that we learn from the best of the history of the church is not animposition of philosophical categories. Yes, it hasits own philosophical grammar in origin, but it's to help ussafeguard each one of those seven statements in relation to the other one,which is why we talk about some of these seemingly heady or esoterictopics which are really to protect our worship and our orthodoxy. And I reallyappreciate in the Book You Start Chapter: One is the Bible and Trinity,the Basic Grammar and then in the back. You have a glossary, which is a greatway to look up about a dozen different terms. So if the reader is saying nowwait a minute, I'm hearing that again paternity personal property. What isScot talking about you have a paragraph or so in the back. It's really helpfula one of the phrases that you've already mentioned. So I just want youto define it and unpacking. A little bit is relations of origin because yousaid...

...that throughout history- and you cantrace this- certainly in the reform tradition, but even before that indistinguishing among the persons ofthe Trinity, they are distinguished by the R relations of origin. What doesthat mean? Why is that important? Yeah? That's a great question! So stick back to Matte, O Thousndad Eightdnineteen, we baptize into the name singular but's, a name that belongs to thefather, the son and the spirit. Well, relations of origin is just an attemptto describe what those personal names mean. So the first person is father to theson. The second person is son of the father. The third person is spirit ofthe father and the sun, and in each case I'm saying ov of Av Right. The son is somehow of the father. Heoriginates from the father, that's who he is the spiritis somhow of the fatherand of the son, and that is who he is. The father is not ofanyone and so a at the end of the day. It's a very basic point, but Truo Tran Theology is about saying:okay. Well, what does that mean or more more likely? What does it not mean and making sure to picky? Back on thepoint you just made Orthodoxy offendimes is about just making surewe're taking into account everything scripture says on these things andreally heresyes, sometimes about latching onto one of the truths right,rather than letting the whole council of God in form, and so relations oforigin yeah. They dusdescribe how the persons are distinct from each other. Eternal generation is sometimes the fancioer way ofdescribing the sun's distinct personhood. The idea that the sun iseternal and that he exists personally eternally from thefather we coal say the same thing about the spirit, an his eternal processionfrom the father of the Sun. Would you say: Is there a distinctionto be made between the language? Relations of origin in the language ofintritrinitarian relationships is an. If so, is one safer than theother I mean relations is probably safer thanrelationships th the trick is there really are not terms of art and theology in the sensethat if you define something the right way yeah, there are many terms thatcould become legitimate, including relationships, but I think what whatrelations is less prone to do than relationships is not to present to us. A picture of the threepersons of the Trinity has three independent human beings who like tohang out together and, and perhaps each do their own different part increation and salvation. You know you three have this podcastrelationship where you know Justin doesn't get to Saye very much, becauseKevin usually speaks over him. Things like that. You know we shouldn'tthink of trinity in that way. So all of all is maybe not the right word, butthe payoff that people often want from the trinity is something about. The diversity of human relationshipsreflects the diversity of persons in the Godhead or this great mysteriousdance or we're relational beings, because God exists in relationship. Probably all of that can be helpful andunhelpful. You want to Pars out how you think of that yeah. It's interesting when you look atthe way. Scripture relates the trinity to us...

...and almost every case the relationship is filtered throughChristology, and so you think about marriage right. It's not just strictlyFather Sen relationship. That usually is in view it's the son's relationshiptot the church is a model for the Hussand's relationship with tha, wifeand so forth, and, and that does a couple of things one it means well. Wecan't read the trinity straight off of Christology, because Jesus while he isthe second person of the Trinity, he's also a human being and he's engaged inthe work of redemption and not everything that he's engaged in thework of redemption says something about God's eternal nature, at least not in adirect way, but then also because of his humanity. There's going to be manythings that accompany his person and work, which say something about us: IsHuman Beingis, not something about the God had, and so yes, there areapplications that we cun make, but they might be there in a way that is more indirect, no less rich, no less wonderful, but we have to kind of be patient. Wehave to listen to scripture. We have to follow the way it describes thesethings, so social trinitarianism. What is that the development of it and is itto be embraced or is it a danger? Yeah social traitaranism, is not to beembraced. Such a trinitarianism is an approach to the trinity that becamepopular again late twentyeth century. After this initial revival of interestin the trinity and such a trititanism is essentially a way of viewing thepersons of the trinity as very, very analogous to human persons, in some cases, having independent ofconsciousness anddependent will the unity of the God had on this view,becomes very similar to the unity of the human race. We say: Tha Persons arethe same kind of being, but there wouldn't we there's less comfort wassaying that the same being and and yeah the worry about SociaTriitariani is that essentially we're. We are modeling the divine persons after the pattern of human persons,rather than going in the reverse direction, which is what I thinkscripture requires us to do it certainly what lies behind a lot ofthe the approaches to eternal functionalsubordination that we're describing earlier there's definitely kind of asocial triterian approach there. The worry is that it compromises things,like divine simplicity, the idea that God is not composed ofparts that God is one in every way and is being N. his mind is: will as powerand so forth, social trinitarianism, I kind of sounds like if not three beings, three minds, three wills and yeah. Atthe end of the day, it's it's really hard to see how socialtrinitarianism is preserving, what both all Testamenta New Testamenttreat as the fundamental principle of theology, that the Lord is one that'swell sick coin, Scott, we, it seems to be a standard part ofavagelical discourse, broadly speaking about the trinity that one person namedwith the spirit has been forgotten, so you think about Francis Chan'sbook froma few years ago, forgotten God, but I really appreciated what you didin this book to explain some of the biblical evidence of who we know thespirit to be of why that might be the case, to explain a little bit of why weseem to often forget the spirit in...

...relation to his particular role withinthe Trinity Yeah thanks yeah. I hear that objection a lot and while there'ssomething to it, I also, I think it's a bit exaggerated. Sometimes it just means you know welike the way this group over here talks about the Holy Spirit and you're nottalking about the Holy Spirit. The way this group is, therefore you don't careabout the Holy Spirit, whereas if you actually tend to the way this other tradition treats thetrinitys, they actually there's a lot there about the Holy Spirit. It's justthey're, not talking about the spirit in the way this group is, and they seethe spirits work in our lives and our ministries in a different way. I thinkthat there is something historical antheological, though, thatis behind this kind of common observation. Historically, the person of the spirit was a subject of later controversy in thekind of development of Trinitarian doctrine and never the source of asintense controversy, as was debate regarding the person of the Sun Right.So we've got several centuries F of just heated debate about the person ofthe sun, and while there are debates about the spirit, they're definitely they're not asextended and they're, not an intense and so there's something about the the natureof the churches need to defend the dety o the son that has given the secondperson a place of prominence and theology that the spirit has perhaps doneenjoyed but theologically, and this is where I wouldn' want to even put toomuch weight on the historical point. There is something about the thespirits mission that is going to may we say deflect from emphasis on hiswork. Jesus says in the farewell discoursethat the spirit W N, when he sends the spirit the spirit's mission, will be toglorify the sun to to cause the son to be acknowledgedin his person and in his work and in his glory, and so what that suggest iswhen the spirits active Jesus will be magnified. Jesus name will be glorifiedand so there's something maybe counterintuitive about this, but the more attention that's given to the sun. Wemight say the more reason we have for believing that the spirit is active andcausing the word to be received and confessed by his people.It's great follow up on that Scott years ago, cocoaster, doer neck, the woods I was studying the so called Lakeland revival,and rather typical among charismatic movements, but there was a lot ofemphasis about recovering the work of the spirit, but I noticed that it wasutterly detached from many biblical evidence about the spirit and certainlydetached from the specific biblical evidence, the spirits role to be ableto point to the sun. In fact, there was very little reference to the finishedwork of Christ or even to Jesus himself. Is that fairly typical for what you seeof problems, or was that a standout incident? No, I think that's true andand a number of the kind of big I don't know how to describe them, butthe revivalistic charismotic movements we see in the last twenty years, whereyou have this kind of language, of a new age, of the spirit of new work ofthe spirit. You see a similar thing right. The Bible often gets shortshrift and the finished work of Christ, the present reign of Christ. These arenot things that are as fronted, Ceter...

...and and the danger of course- and thisis where relations of origin becomes so helpful in a very practical context,right. The spirit that the Bible talks aboutis the spirit who proceeds from the father and the sun and who, who whofrom all eternity, is the the crowning glory that the fathergives to Dhesigmon in time is the is the one who crowns the sun in ourhearts, and so other spirits in the Bible acknowledgesthe existence of other spirits. There may be other spirits who can even perform biraculous signs, but if those spirits are not drawing ourattention to the glory of Christ and to his finished work, then we should raiseour eyebrows because they may not be the Holy Spirit. They may not be thespirit of the father and the Sun. Yeah there's a great quote from JIpackers, keeping and step with the spirit where he talks about walking in the evening and seeingfloodlights illuminating, a church building and thinking that that's aperfect illustration of the spirits role that the the point of a floodlight is never to say. Look at me observe me what a great job I'm doing,but it's always to cast the light upon its object and for the spirit of thecontinually be saying, look at him. LOOK HIS GLORY! LISTEN TO HIM! Listento his word, it'sno, a memorable packer illustration: that's Oy! STUCK WITH MEYEAH! I think that's exactly right and you think of the language Paul uses inSegrithians thirteen fourteen, the grace of our Lord Jes Chrises, the loveof God and the Fellowship Ot the Holy Spirit. If the spirits stands out in the work of redemption in bringing us into fellowship with thefather and the sun, then again his activity is going to be abouthighlighting the fellowship that we have with the other persons of theTrinity. It's not going to be isolated from the knowledge and from the faithand obedience of these other persons. Scott you're, a teacher, a very goodteacher, I'm going to just mention some terms and we're going to go quickly. You cando these in a sentence or two just somebody who's listening and trying tounderstand, especially some of the systematic theology terms andcategories. So here's in your chapter on God, the Father, the basic grammaryou distinguish between common predication apredicates. What can besaid of something so common predication, you say refers to what the threepersons hold in common and in proper predication refers to what each personof the Trinity holds in distinction from the other two. So give us h t whatare some of the common predicates and the proper predicates for the personsof the Trinity Yep, so common prodicates of theTrinity, the divine name itself. So all three persons are described, indscripture as Yawa the Lord, when we baptize in the name of theFathers Son, whos Pi, the name there's likely a a kind of reference to God'sproper name. All three persons are given the title: God and our God, allthree persons are described in terms of various divine attributes, variousdivide, actions of creation, redemption and that's actually, one of the thingsI think folks are most commonly miss and thinking aboutthe Trinidy in think o Kay ijust in the trinity, the Father Creates and sonredeems the spirit sanctifies, but actually scripture ascribes creation toall three persons. It ascribes redemption to all three persons. Itdescribes sanctification to all three...

...persons in terms of personal predicates, personal properties, the personal namesthemselves, father son spirit generally are used distinctly of the persons. Although thesecond person is described as everlasting father in Isaah, but Idon't think that's describing him in terms of his distinct personhood.I think that's describing him as the author of time and in that sense tit's,a common predication but other distinct titles. The Sun isalso described, as the word I think, of John One he's described as the image ofGod and Clautan's one he's described as the radiance of God's glory, and then the spirit is described in anumber of different ways as well. To emphasize his distinct personhood, so inseparable operations is a key term.You just GT oluted to it there that all three persons work inseparably in theirexternal operations so help us understand that, because, on the faceof it someone's going to say, wait a minute, the fater didn't die in thecross. The the son didn't descend as a dove at his own baptism. How can yousay that they're all three doing the same thing all the time? What do wemean by inseparable operations and how does that really work? Biblically yeah,so inseparable operations is just an application biblical monotheism to the question of how the One god acts,and so because God is one. God exercises one divine power when divinewisdom, Ond Dovine, goodness in all that he does, and so this doesn't takeaway the distinction of the persons. But what it says is the distinction between the persons isthe stinction. We see within God's singular operations, not the tweendifferent operations. SERVOR example. Creation is the work of the one God.How does the one God create while the father speaks the world into existencethrough his word and by his spirit right so san thirty, three, a by theword of the Lord, the heavens, were made and all the story host by thebreath of his mouth. So one divine work, but we see the three persons operative init so help us understand and then I'llthrow t back to these guys. But whenever you talk about the trenity,people sometimes get nervous like if I say anything more than one God:Three Persons, I'm probably saying a heresy, and then I'm going to be condemned thatwell there's a difference between someoneuninformed or not quite taught, all the distinctions slipping up. So we don'twant people to be so fearful about the Ritun of the trinity and someone whosees what's at stake and then affirms something that the Church has found tobe heretical, but tell us what modalism is what's theproblem with it and subordinationism and what's the problem? Yes, so motalism affirms that God haswon, but it cannot affirm a real distinction between the persons. So itaffirms merely kind of a superficial distinction w we do see differentpersons in the work of redemption, but those are just different phases ofGod's life. They're, not really distinct person water, I saper witer ice vapor is motalism yes and thewhat as the second subordinationism sportinationism in the strict sense ofArianism areas could affirm areas was a fourth century heretic condemned byvarious stritch councils. Areas could...

...have firmed the existence of a trinityand he uses the term tritoby by which he means three distinct persons. Butwhat Areus can't affirm is that the three distinct persons are one God, andspecifically, he can't affirm that the sun is to use the technical languagecon substantial with the father. He believes the son was the first and mostspecial creature of the of God through whom God created and redeemed the restof the world. Okay last one talk about the distinction, and I don't rememberif you did- you mentioned it here, but it wasn't a separate section that Irecall between the Economic Trinity and the imminent Trinity, and how does that relate to our earlierdiscussion about eternal relations of authority and submission, because Icould, I could imagine a listener saying well: What's the big deal aboutauthority and submission? Clearly the son says to the father: Not My will,but yours be done. He obeys the father, but there's there's some importantdistinctions there with the eternal relations of authority and submissionand how it relates to the inner life of the Trinity and the out working of thetrinities operations in time. So what's the distinction there yeah actually don't think I use those termsin the book and that's partly for reasons that would bore people to hearright now. That was very popular way of talking about in the Twenteth Century,but I think it actually applied a certain way o distinguishing God between fromGod's Act. It's not that helpful, but neverless, we do have to say, there's arelationship between who, God is and how God acts and the clearest way wesee. It is the relations of origin thatdistinguishd the three persons also shine forth in the way God reaches outspecifically to save us. So glations, four, four through seven saysat the fullness of time, God sent forth his son that sending language is language wesometimes used to describe the mission of the sunhe was sent and then it also says after describing the son's incarnation, hiswork of redemption and his acquiring the right of adoption. It says, and God set the spirit of his son intoour heart. So there's two sendings there's two missions, the father sentthe son and the father and the son sent thespirit. Well, what Augustine argued and really majority of certainly a triiteriantheology in the West argued was that the missions of the persons in time, sothe mission of the sun to become a Carnan redeemus. The mission of thespirit to Endwell us to sanctify US those missions reflect those eternalrelations of origin. So, as the sun is eternally from the father, so in timehe is sent by the Father Drudimus, as the spirit is eternally from the father,ind, the sun. So in time he is sent by the father and the son to and dwell us,and so at the end of the day, for someone likeThomas Aquinas, those abitions are about how the Triung God emraces us in fellowship in his triun life. So themission of the son is to do what to make sons and daughters of a living God, making the son's father our father. Themission of the spirit is o to enable us to express on our lips the same crythat Jesus had on his lips: Dhrough the Gospel Aba, father and so the missionsof of the son of the spirit both reflect the eternal relations of origin,but they also embrace us in some sense...

...within those relations. So you think the Latin phrases ad extra at Intra arebetter than economic, Trinity and Imminent Trinity. I think so becausethe again economic imminent can Si Leotuao two trinities m. It could alsosound like we're only talking about, for example,eternal generation when we're talking about the trinity before time, Hich,which is wrong right in the sun's temporal mission, we'reseeing before our eyes the eye te faith, at least what it means for him to be the son ofthe father and yes, that doesn't begin to be in time, but that is what's beingpresented to us and so imminent. An economic doesn't quite capture thereality that the missions bring those very person person constitutingrelations. If I can say like that that the missions bring those to us andpresent them to us. So when we hear the father at Jesus Baptism saying this ismy beloved son Whinh, whom I'm well pleased. We are seeing something:that's eternally true of the trnity. It's really good we're going to go toCollin, then to Justin and the we're going to talk about some books. Colin. I do I do have something you can startto think about this got. I would like to also hear in the end, the besttrinity songs to Sing Holy Holy Holy, be a good one, just as a lay up there,but you can think about some other ones as well. Okay, kind of a short question,but obviously a big topic. The biggest church split in all of history,actually happen over atrinitarian debate about the procession of thespirit, whether from the father or father and the son, or was theresomething else going on wells? That Surley was the presenting cause, Ithink is doctor would say there were also some deeper issues interms of church polity related to the Bishop of Rome and his authority. Therewas an issue related to kind of what we might call creedle integrity, whether a phrase should be added to thenieene creed or not with the West saying yeah, it's okay, we can updatethings and the east saying no, don't update things, and so, but the presenting issue waswhether the spirit proceeds from the father only or also from the sun, theWest, holding the latter view the east holding the former view in roughly theyear onetusand. Yes, Yeah Philly; okay, yes, all right good, that that was a smartseminary and Question Colin Mad of represent Trinity Event, Oco Ivinityschool when Oo Hol, my momy bet. Well, Justin, yes, got I'm curious, TNAT, noteverybody! WHO's! Listening to this is a pastor, but I assume we have at leasta few pastors listening and they may be hearing this conversation. Hopefullythey're motivated to pick up your new book and to either get a refresher tobe corrected to be challenged to be instructed, but I can imagine somebody listeningand feeling somewhat overwhelmed. All these terms, an we haven't even talkedabout crosopological Exa, Jesus and relations of origin and activespyration versus pass es, piration and feeling like okay number one. Ineed to get up. You know either to get refreshdin. This learn it myself, but secondly I can imagine a feeling ofbeing frozen or feeling of despair of how do we actually communicate this tomy cogregation. You Know Blue Collar folks, they've got busy jobs, they'reanxious about covid and about children. Do you have some suggestions of what apastor should do in terms of leading a coguvation to be more informed abouttrinitarianism? Should they work it into their sermons? Should they... catacasis in their church? Shouldthey teach a special class on Sunday school? Should it be part of a largerprogram? WIT, systematic theology? Are there any suggestions that you have forpastors to help their people grow and their refinementand knowledge withoutnecessarily having to go and roll at t rts, though, that would not be a badthing. Yes, yeah thanks Ather, I think thererea lot of a lot of resources out there. That canhelp us, because the trinity is central to ourfaith. Historically pastors have come up witha lot of wonderful tools to help our people to imbibe that reality, and so you mentioned catechisms. Ithink catechisms are a wonderful way of not only getting the basic grammarright, a D and, and one of the things I saidkind of coming out, oftwo thousand and sixteen if, if only people had paidattention to the Westmins or shorter catechism, wes penser large ACATASTM,which explicitly rules out kind of a Fer, eternal functional suportnation,we would have gotte into to this mass one of my favorite catechisms, theHYDEBRAC catechism, and one reason I love it is that, after giving kind of the Short Summaryof the Gospel in the first several questions, woul, it wants to say: okay.Well, what's The fullness of the Gospel? What are all the things that God haspromised us? It then uses the apostles creed, which is a creed that has atriitarian framework following the Baptistmal Commandi mate t o Thousnda,eight nineteen. It uses a trinit train framework to expound the Gospel, butwhat think pastors can do because we're constantly talking about the GospelRight, I hope we are is to make sure that when we're summarizing the Gospel,our summary reflects our baptism right and we start to see how the Creetis isjust so helpful there. Other examples are you know one of the the things thatHerman batink loves. Herman Bobbick is one of my favorite theologians and Iimagine one of y'LS as well. He can't help talking about baptismwithout citing some of the historic reformed litergies which aure rebustly Trinitarian talkabout in baptism. God seals it to us that he is our father and that Christis our redeemer and that the spirit it dwells us these kind of short hand.Ways of Talkig about the trinity are very useful and then to get to thecollins question about songs. We can learn to sing about the trinity.He mentioned Holy Holy Holy and certainly a wonderful one. Lesliey, isn't it of the Fathers LoveBegotten, that's one of my favorites as well, but the NE Gloria Patre, the doxology. These are offen on every week in ourchurches and theire wonderful summaries of the Trinity, I think part of part ofthe thing Justin, as maybe adjusting our aspectations of what we're tryingto do sometimes wer worried, because we can't explain these terms. We can'texplain how the Trinity Works, and you know we just said: Don't use any ofthose analogies ord, you get you in trouble. An people say what can I do,but but the goal and really sound Tretan theology is, is not to be able to explain it, but it if I can use the Mataphor it'sto be able to follow the tune right. It is to be able to follow s cabin sedearlier to follow the grammar and the illustration that I like to givesometimes is this: You know Kids Age, four, five: Six: they can goout and enjoyn the soccer team. They...

...can play baseball. Kids walk around thehouse, singing songs at even younger ages than that. Now those kids don'tactually have to know anything about the laws of physics that Underlie Baseball to play baseballright. They don't have to understand the laws of mathematics that lie behindmusical skills and everything else to sing a tune. What do they have to do?They have to learn how to catch the tune. They have to learn how to followthe rules of the game and that's really what we're trying to do in Trinitaryantheology. I is follow the rules of the game which are laid out in the way theprovits, an apostles speak about our God and and all of the kind of fancytrinitane grammar is just a about helping people make sure they canfollow along right. YEU, don't have to necesarily, explain how it all works.None of us can do that. Augustine says you know if you can understand it, it'snot God that you're talking about and thats, certainly true when it comes tothe Trinity, so I think finding different ways to familiarize peoplewith the grammar to help them see how central it really is to so many aspects of our faith. Those arethe best things to do and again we've got a number of resources: Rich Litergy,litrigical resources as well, but yeah. I bet a Sunday cl schoolclass on the trinity that wouldn't hurt along the way, so Ima Sig way into the next section, but Fred Sanders book, one, the deep thingsof God: e Yo aure conversations almost beenpresupposing a rich letergical, historical awareness, but fred comes atit fom more of a low church perspective, and I don't know that he exactly putsit this way. But my summary of the book would be even geicals become who youare. You are trantarian, as you talked about your testimony as you experienceGod, as you sing your hyms, you are Triniterian, you just don't realize itnow, let's, let's put some teeth on that and I flesh that out, because you areTrinid a trinitarian people, so yeah, that's a great sege and we've alreadymentioned some hymns and Katakhi says Scott other resources. You do have ahelpful section in the back of the book listing some other resources, so feelfree to mention a couple of those or other ones: books, articles chapters,hym songs, schoolhouse rock three- is a magicnumber. What resources, what you recommend for learning the trinity anddeveloping our sense of the tune? Yeah? Well, I'm assuming most listenershave seen this bit. If they have 't, they need to see the Lutheran satire,video, yeah, snt, Patrick's, bad tranitaiananalogies, that's the one. My kids have always loved nd. In fact, you know theystill to this day will point out of someone's committing the Er ofpartialism, Patrick Patriek, Yeah Yeah Mo isbut yeah.That's a great resource, yeah terms of books, justid mentioned Fred Sanders,the deep things of God. That is a a wonderful introduction to the trinitythat tries to begin with our practical experience of of just being converted,but of also things like prayer and Bible study in how, if we reflect uponthese basic Christian practices, were already engaging the trinity and sothinking about the trinity. Just only helps us better appreciate what we'redoing there: A number of other helpful resources, Herman Bobinks, the wonderful works ofGod, which has just been released. In into addition, I really like hischapter on the Trinityand. That's a...

...shorter piece! That's just going togive you very sound Biblical summary of the Doctrine: Brandon, Crow and Carl Truman Edi thebook a few years back called the essential trinity which has chapters onthe trinity in the Old Testament, but then also the trinity in each NewTestament Book, along with some other summary practical chapters. That's areally nice resource for for really seeing how integral thetrinity is to scripture, and if I were, I want one way to come back to toJustin's question from earlier. If I were preaching on any book in the New Testament, part of my preparation for preachingwould be to read whatever chapter from the the Crow and Truman book deals withthe Trinity in that book of the Bible. So I'm preaching the Gospipel Mark, I'mgoing to read the chapter on the Trinity and Mark, and that will help methink of okay. Well, how does this Gospelas a whole present the trinity,and maybe I can just weave it into my sermons without having a distinctsermat on the trinity? Beyond that, I think that CS, Lewis'sadvice of reading older works is good advice, and I think that folks will find with someof them. They might not be as challenging as one first suspect, so gregriveNasianzas five theological orations. This is a series of sermons publishedright around the time of the Council of Content Nople, which is the counselor,really get what we call Tha Niscene creed, and these sermons are on theTrinity, they're rich, they're, wonderful and what they show us is howthe fathers aren't just kind of philosophizing about God, but they'reengaging in exidjesus and they're defending our common salvation andthat's why they care about talking about the trinity, yeah there're, a lot of good works outthere. I can keep going yeah. I mean a few others, a just name, a couple ofyour other ones, Scott, that you were a part of retrieving eternal generation,that's specifically on that doctrine, but that was really helpful from acouple of years ago. The book this was one of the ones you did with withCoastin Burger on trinity and John Yep. So I just finished preaching throughJohn for a couple of years, and that was one of the books that I wouldalways look in. What did you to say about this particular passage? Ou findthe rich trinitarian tapestry any sermons that anyone can find bySinclair Ferguson on the Trinity. I don't know anyone in our day who'sbetter at preaching, bringing you into the throneroom as it Wer then sinclar. I know a lot of people like MichaelReevesbook, Robert Lettam's book on the Trinity, at at a more, I don't say,sophisticated, because those are sophisticated guys, but I found Williamshed's dogmatic Deology, particularly good on the Trinity. It's going to bevery finely nuanced and define that for someone wanting to that's not even twoo one but Maye want to go to three O one. I found that really helpful othersuggestions justin another one that hasn't been mentionedas Phil Riken and Michael Lafavories Ar Trioun God that crossway publishers. Ithink Fred said that if he had to give somebody the most basic introduction totrenitarianism a you, have a an older student at home or child, orsomebody in your church who just you know, wants to want to jump in that hethinks that would be his first recommendation. So that's one thatcomes to mine and then there are other books. You Know Ferguson's book on the HolySpirit, TOR Greglanears new book on is...

Jesus, truly God yea, looking at the specific personhood work of so that's obviously related to thetrendity and is Trinitarian in nature. That kind of focuses, more specificallyon person, Work Ministry of the persons. It's Great Scott. You have beengenerous to give us more than an hour of your time and we don't have people on here. Just youknow Scott didn't say: Hey. Can I come on talk about your book. We said Scottwere going to like your book and we do like it. So can we talk to you, so it'sa genuine recommendation to get the trinity and introduction and it's,although it has a lot in there, it's only a hundred and less than a hundredand fifty pages so really commend that to our audience and perhaps a fittingway to close. You mentioned to him. This is anonymous, but I'm sure you allknow come Thou Almighty. King Help US THY name to saying help us to praisefather all glorious or all victorious come and reign over US ancient of days,verse to come. Tou Incarnate, Word Gird on thy Mighty Sword, scatter thy foes,let Thine Almighty aid, our sure defence be made. Our souls on thee bestayed thy, wonder, show and Verse Three Come Holy Comfort. Her Thy sacredwitness bear in this glad hour, Thou who Almighty, ARD, now rule in everyheart and Ne'r from us, tepart spirit of power and then a final verse to theGreat One and three eternal praises B, Hints Evermore his Sovereign MajestyMay we and glory see and to eternity love and a dor to twelve and thetrinity stalter him Nol to the Italian, who him very strong him tune andwonderful, trinitarian him. Scott. Thank you for being with us, Colin andJustin great to be with you guys. Lord Willing will be back next week andwe're hoping to come midweek with a special post election podcast. If weknow what what has happened by midweek stay tunedand we'll see until then glorify God and enjoy him forever andread a good book.

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