"Christians believe that God is self-revealed to us as a trinity of persons: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. The Blessed Trinity is the central doctrine of Catholic faith from which other teachings are derived. We can never fully comprehend the doctrine of the Trinity. God is beyond full human knowledge. God is more intimate to us than we are to ourselves. God chose to approach us through Jesus and take up his dwelling in us through the Holy Spirit. This is the mystery of love itself; we have been given a glimpse of God's own life."
"God the Father creates all things and continues to give life and being to everything in creation. God the Son "Jesus Christ" lived among us, taught us of the Father's love, and won for us eternal salvation. God the Holy Spirit is the love of God who dwells in us and in the church. The Holy Spirit is the source of unity, courage, truth, and love of all humanity."
(page 29-30, The Seekers Catechism: The Basics of Catholicism by Michael Francis, Pennock 1994)
"For if the incarnation was a figment then our salvation was a figment. Christ was twofold; he was man in what was visible; he was God in what was invisible. He ate, as being really man like us (for he had the feelings of the flesh just as we have); but he fed the five thousand with five loaves, as being God. He died, as being really man; but as God he raised the body four days
"Religion does not allow us to worship the mere man, and it is not true reverence to speak of him as God only, separate from his manhood. For if Christ is God (as he truly is) but did not take manhood, we are aliens from salvation. Let him be worshipped as God, but let it be believed that he also became man. For it is of no avail to call him man, without his divinity; and we do not receive salvation if we fail to acknowledge his manhood together with his
Godhead."-- St. Cyril of Jerusalem, 315-381 A.D. (from The Later
Christian Fathers by Henry Bettenson 1970)
The Blessed Trinity is three persons in one God. Jesus told his disciples, "to baptize in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (Matthew 28: 19). He made it clear that He and the Father and the Holy Spirit are One. There are three divine persons in one God. How there are three persons in one God is a mystery. It is something we cannot fully understand. But we believe it because Jesus told us. We will not understand it until we reach heaven. For those who have faith no answer is necessary, for those who do not have faith, no answer if possible.
Is there only one God? Yes, there is only one God. How many divine "persons" are there in one God? In God there are three divine "persons": the FATHER, the SON, and the HOLY SPIRIT. All three are one God.
God the Father is the First Person of the Blessed Trinity.
God the Son, Jesus Christ, who became man and died for our sins, is the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity. When we call Mary the mother of God, we are saying that she is the mother of God the Son, Jesus Christ, the second Person of the Blessed Trinity.
God the Holy Spirit is the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity. Therefore, God is . . . 3 Divine Persons who has One Divine Nature. There are not 3 Gods, but only One God. No matter if you are Catholic, Baptist, Lutheran, Evangelical, Pentecostal, Methodist, etc., we believe in the Trinity and we believe that Jesus is God the Son but also that he is fully human "son of man" born of the virgin Mary.
Jesus is God the Son, the second person of the Trinity. "He is the word of God who is God who became flesh (man) and dwelt among us" (John 1:1-18). Jesus is the Son of God which means he is equal to God, he is not the Father or the Holy Spirit. They are three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit which have one divine nature because there is only one true God. To help you understand think about a triangle. If it has three equal and distinct sides but is one shape. How about a three leaf clover. It is has three leaves but is one plant. Finally think about water. What has three forms: Ice, Liquid, and Vapor but all are the same water. God is the Blessed Trinity three in one.
The Nature of Jesus Christ
Theological, Historical and Scriptural Evidence
Jesus has two natures: A Divine Nature and a human nature, he is true God and true man. Only God is Divine, therefore, Jesus is Divine. He came down from heaven and took on flesh and became true man but never ceased from being God almighty. In the year 325 AD at the Catholic Christian council of Nicea they put together a profession of the true faith of what they believed and what was handed down from the apostles. It was a response to the
heresies of their time, those who denied the Divinity of Christ and those who denied the humanity of Christ as well as those who denied Christ altogether.
Today this same profession of faith is known as the Nicean Creed named after the council of Nicea and is recited at every Catholic Christian Mass throughout the world:
"We believe in one God, the Father, the almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, light from light, true God from true God, begotten not made, one in Being with the Father. Through him all things were made."
Also in the Gloria:
"...Lord Jesus Christ, only Son of the Father, Lord God, Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world, have mercy on
Also in the Eucharistic prayer #1 of the Mass:
"...In union with the whole church we honor Mary, the ever virgin mother of Jesus Christ our Lord and God. We honor Joseph, her husband, the apostles and
martyrs. May their merits and prayers gain us your constant help and protection. Through Christ our Lord. Amen."
Old and New Testament scripture passages
In the Old Testament God said to Moses, "I Am who I Am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ' I Am has sent me to
you'" (Exodus 3:14).
In the New Testament in the Gospel of John, Jesus refers to himself as "I Am" which is the Divine name of God (John 8:58). The Jews understood Jesus to be claiming to be God, so they tried to stone Jesus.
The Jews have always understood as well as we still do today that God alone can forgive sin. Yet Jesus said in Luke 5:20 "friend, your sins are forgiven." The Jews replied, "who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?" But since Jesus is God the Son, he was right and able to forgive sins.
After his resurrection he came to Thomas who would not believe until he could see Jesus, "then he said to Thomas,' put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.' Thomas said to him,' My Lord and my God!' then Jesus told him, ' because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed'" (John 20:27-29). Notice that Jesus did not correct Thomas for calling him God and Lord, but said that those who believe will be blessed.
We know that we can only worship God. We also know that Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. In
Revelation 5:13-14, we see Jesus as the Lamb being worshipped, praised, and glorified. We also see Jesus referred to as Lord with a capital 'L'. No one except God alone was referred to as Lord In the Old Testament. But we find throughout The New Testament Jesus being called Lord. "But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:18). We even find the apostles referring to Jesus as God". "to those who through the righteousness of our God and savior Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:1).
We find in Hebrews 12:23 that God would judge all men. In Matthew 25:31-46, we find Jesus judging the world. There is no contradiction between these passages because Jesus is God and as God he will judge the world as he sits on his heavenly throne. But remember Jesus is not only our judge but are Merciful savior. He is offering you his love and Mercy and calling you now while you are here on earth to follow him in faith. He has already given you his Mercy and love by dying in your place on the cross for your sin. He has risen from the dead so that you to may rise to ever lasting life by following him faithfully.
Conversation between God the Father and God the Son "but about the Son he says, '
your throne, O God, will last forever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy." (Hebrews 1:8-9).
Titus 2:13-14, "while we wait for the blessed hope-the glorious appearing of our great God and
Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us all from all wickedness and two purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good".
Colossians 1:15-20, "He is the image of the invisible God, for God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross".
Philippians 2:6-11, "your attitude should be that of Christ Jesus: who, being in very nature God, did not considered equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a
servant to humble himself and became obedient to death -- even to death on a cross"
Also, 1 Corinthians 12:3, "therefore I tell you that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, ' Jesus is Lord, except by the Holy Spirit".
Romans 9:5, "theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God overall, forever praised! Amen".
John 17:20-23, "Jesus says that he and the Father are one" as he prayed that we too may be one.
John 14:9-11, "don't you know me Philip? Even after I have been among use such along time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say show us the Father? Don't you believe that I am in the Father? And the Father is in me?"
John 10:38, "the Father is in me, and I am in the Father".
The Jews even say, "no man has ever spoken the way Christ has" (John 7:46).
Reference to Jesus as God by early first and second century Catholic Church Fathers
Ignatius of Antioch -- "Ignatius, also called Theophorus, the church at Ephesus in Asiapre-destined from eternity for a glory that is lasting and unchanging, united and chosen through true suffering by the will of the Father in Jesus Christ our God"
(written in the year AD 110). Also "for our God, Jesus Christ, was conceived by Mary in accord with God's plan" "to the church beloved and enlightened after the love of Jesus, our God, by the will of him that has willed everything which is".
Tertullian -- "God alone is without sin. The only man who is without sin is Christ; for Christ is also God"
(written in the year 210 AD).
Origen -- "although he was God, he took flesh, and having been made man, he, Jesus remained what he was,
God" (225 AD).
Marco A. Fallon