Posted: September 17, 2012
PORTRAITS OF THE TRINITY
Let us begin this week some final thoughts on the Trinity. We have been emphasizing the times when pairs of 3’s are mentioned in Scripture. There are three heavens, three forms of authority, three parts to creation, three types of art, three major colors in the rainbow, three parts to the atom, and on and on we could go.
This week let us again begin to look in Matthew 3:13-17 where we see the confessing portrait of the Trinity. I want to look first of all at the Scripture’s confession about the Trinity. I see there are scriptural themes to be learned. On three different occasions the Father speaks from heaven about His son and it seems all three of the Godhead is present when the Father speaks. In Matthew 3 the Father speaks at the Son's baptism. In Matthew 17 the Father speaks at His Son’s transfiguration. In John 12 the Father speaks prior to His Son's death and glorification. The Father speaks three times and there we are once again confronted with the number three.
I see also some scriptural treasures. Throughout the New Testament we see the Son magnified as a part of the triune Godhead. In Matthew we are told to bow to Him as the King. In Mark we behold Him as a servant. In Luke He becomes a man. John calls upon us to believe that Jesus and the Father are one. It is very clear to me that everywhere you look in the New Testament you find the triune Godhead, the great three in one if you please magnified on almost every page. We must say there is a scriptural confession of the three in one.
Let us look next at the servant’s confession of the Trinity. When I speak of the servant I speak of John the Baptist and what is said by him in Matthew 3:13-17. John in a confession of humility and grace in verse 14 says, ‘I need to be baptized of you and not I baptize you’. John tells us in verse 11 that he is not even worthy to take up the position of a lowly house servant and unloose the shoes of Jesus from off His feet. In John 3 John the Baptist desires that he might decrease and Jesus increase.
Let us look also at the confession of the Holy Ghost. In Matthew 3:11 John speaks of being baptized with the Holy Ghost. I believe there should never be a physical baptism into water until there is a spiritual baptism into Christ by the Holy Ghost. In Luke 1:15 we find those who are full of the Holy Ghost never feel as if they have enough of the Spirit but are always wanting more. In Luke 1:41-44 we find the Holy Ghost causes us to do strange things when Jesus is mentioned or comes in power, like give Him praise, leap up, jump, and skip for joy. In most of our worship services today either we are not full of the Holy Ghost or Jesus is not coming around because seldom is there any emotions ever shown.
In Matthew 3:15 we have the Son’s confession about the Trinity. There is the confession of a blessed request. Our Lord does not chide John for wanting to be baptized by Him but says suffer it to be so now that you baptized me. The word suffer means to yield your plans, and ideas to Him, and do it now. Oh how the dove of heaven will come down upon us when we die to self and yield our plans to Him. May we walk in obedience to Him and may we do it now.
In Matthew 3:15 we have the confession of a becoming righteousness. The word fulfill means to become or bring into completeness. The word righteousness speaks of Christ, for Paul said Christ is made unto us righteousness. Obedience in our lives causes or becomes in us to fulfill His righteousness. The word ‘becomes’ leads us to lean away from making our own point, telling our thoughts and feelings, and speaking our ideas or suggestions. When the Holy Ghost is filling us, the Son is being lifted up, it will be then that the Father will speak and say, it is not about what becomes us but what becomes Him.