Blessings to you all in the name of God our Father, and His Son, Jesus the Christ, and our Advocate, the Holy Spirit.
Today we're gathered here to remember and celebrate the Trinity. Someone wrote a creed a long, long time ago called the Athanasian Creed. In it the writer made the best attempt they could at describing the Trinity. In it are 44 sentences or statements each one building on the one before seeking to explain God. The best explanation I've read lately comes from the Agnus Day cartoon. There are two sheep talking and the first one says, “I've got it!” The second sheep says, “Oh no – you're not telling me that you've figured out the Trinity – again.” He answers, “ Nope! I've got that long Athanasian creed down to a tweet! See! The Dad, Son & Spirit are God; God is Dad, Son & Spirit; Dad & Son, Son & Dad, Dad & Spirit, Son & Spirit, Spirit & Son. Done.” The second sheep replies, “You scare me.”
Don't you wish it was that easy, explaining God, the Three-in-One? I've quit trying because for me it's enough to know that God has it all taken care of and all I have to do is believe in God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit knowing that all are at work in my life.
It's all a mystery. And no matter how much our learned theologians attempt to provide us with examples and explanations they all fall short because no one has ever seen God. So, how is any human ever going to be able to adequately describe God? They can't so I'm not going to try.
What I do believe that's more important for us to focus on is Paul's message for us in his letter to the Romans. If you go back to chapter 7 where he is talking about the law and sin and how much trouble he experiences trying to do good and failing miserably you will understand where he's coming from in today's passage from chapter 8 beginning with verse 12.
Paul asks a question in 7:24 that says, “Is there no one who do anything for me? Isn't that the real question?” And then Paul says what I just said about the Trinity, “The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.” “With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved...The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.”
Paul says all that we have to do is, “...simply embrace what the Spirit is doing in us.” You'll find these words in the verse just preceding our lesson today. He's telling us we have to quit trying to do everything using our own strength and muscle. We must trust in God's action, God's Spirit in us, living and breathing God. When we obsess about ourselves and our lives we find ourselves in a cul-de-sac with no way out except to turn around and go back, back to God.
So, good friends, there you have the Trinity. God the Father loves us so much that he sent His Son so that we might have life and His Son sent the Advocate, the Holy Spirit to fill us with his breath and life. That's the best I can do and I truly believe that's all I can expect you to do. Trust, have faith that God does have this all taken care of and all we have to do is love...love God and love our neighbors.
And you all know what that means. We'll never be perfect at doing that but thank God we are forgiven through Jesus' interceding for us when we stumble. Thanks be to God for his loving and forgiving grace. Amen.