Around this time of year, I always turn to Jurgen Moltmann’s Spirit of Life because it is such a fresh and inspiring and provocative exploration of the Nature and power of the Holy Spirit.
What Pat preached on last week is the birth of the Holy Spirit in a new and radical way in the life of the church. This week, what the church calls Trinity Sunday, is when we step back and try to get something of a handle on this new and ever mysterious concept of God that our forebears of faith were trying to get a handle on as well, the Trinity.
A New idea. Wrestling with a new idea. We should be doing this as a community. Christ is always inspiring new things. We need to be open to the possibilities.
-Modern believers tend to trust in therapy more than in mystery Kathleen Norris
-Tell me how it is that in this room there are three candles and but one light, and I will explain to you the mode of the divine existence. John Wesley
Moltmann, Spirit as fellowship, as Koinonia.
If it is a characteristic of the divine Spirit not merely to communicate this or that particular thing, but actually to enter into fellowship with believing men and women -- if indeed he himself becomes their fellowship -- then "fellowship" cannot merely be a "gift" of the Spirit. It must be the eternal, essential nature of the Spirit himself. Whereas Christ, the Son of God is called the source of grace, and God the Father is called the source of love, "fellowship" is designated as the nature of the Spirit himself. The Spirit does not merely bring about fellowship with himself. He himself issues from his fellowship with the Father and the Son, and the fellowship into which he enters with believers corresponds to his fellowship with the Father and the Son, and is therefore a trinitarian fellowship.
Fellowship of Fruit. What we do here matters eternally. This is why this fellowship must be an authentic reflection of the love and power of Christ.
Friend relayed the message from a church planner—quit being a “friendly church.” That sounds harsh, but perhaps it holds some truth. We’d probably use it as an adjective for our own church. But when you hold up the word “friendly” to the phrase, “a place where you can make a friend,” maybe you can see my difference.
One of the mysterious revelations of the Trinity is that our own God is in relationship with Himself in some dynamic, active way. We are pulled into this relationship much like a dance partner is pulled onto the dance floor (sometimes unwillingly, sometimes “swept off our feet.”
his relationship at the core of God is described in the classical doctrines of the Trinity as “one being, who exists simulaneously and eternally, as a ‘mutual indwelling’ of three persons.” Isn’t that a beautiful term? “Mutual Indwelling:” in my mind I see a beautiful endless spiral.
John of Damascus, in the 8th century, used the Greek term περιχώρησις (perichoresis, literally: circuition, going around, or more precisely for John of Damascus' meaning envelopment) to signify this, in his explanation of the text, "I am in my Father, and my Father is in me."
In Eastern Christianity, perichoresis is associated with unification with the Godhead upon sanctification. Redeemed humanity is drawn into the circulation of divine love and thus participates in the coinherence of the Divine Persons,
Interestingly enough, the if you replace the “omega” with its long O sound in the word “perichoresis,” with an omicron, a short “o” sound, you have the Greek word for “dance.” Isn’t that beautiful? God’s very being is not very far removed from the idea of an endless, mutual dance, and God is inviting us to be a part of the dance.
One way that the Trinity is often spoken about is the personal idea of being one person, but being in relationship in three different ways. I am one person, but I am a son, a husband, and a father. I like this metaphor for the trinity because it builds on relationships. And that is one of the beautiful messages of the Trinity. Our God is so overflowing with the desire for relationship with Creation, that he comes to it in three distinct persons: a Father Creator, a Son Redeemer, and a Spirit Perfector.
Also three personas in the Latin sense, the word meant “mask” and it was a theater word. You might think of how an actor can wear three masks and be three different parts in a play. Most people who have acted know that the parts that you play influence one another, and you have prob. Read intverviews of actors saying they drew from this character from 10 years ago when they figured out how to play another character.
Beginning in June, 5 week exploration of some of the things that are consistently found in fruitful congregations where the Spirit of Fellowship is stirring. We can find some of those things here, but we need to learn how to articulate them and invite people to be a part of them. They are: Radical Hospitality, passionate worship, intentional faith development, risk-taking mission and service, and extravagant generosity.
With regard to Seniors, this is what they should look for in a Christian community in the years to come and they may move away from this community.
Whether we know it or not we not only believe in the triune God, but also "live" in the triune God.
This reciprocal, sometimes called mystical, "living in God" also belongs to the trinitarian life: "those who live in love, live in God and God in them" (1 John 4:6). "We in God and God in us" is not meant merely as some sort of fleeting, mystical rapture, but is a daily relaxing quiet and intimate "living.