The Trinity

Autumn 2018

Letter from the Editor

The Trinity is one of the great mysteries of the Christian faith. It is essential to Christian orthodoxy, and yet remains one of the most challenging doctrines to explore and explain. Of course, generous conversation partners make such mysterious explorations all the more inviting and intriguing – and our contributors in this volume of Resonance certainly provide a welcoming and invigorating environment to learn and grow together.

One of the distinct features of Resonance is how we approach each volume’s theme from the different perspectives of Liturgy, Witness, Scripture, and Tradition. This variety of lenses allows us to see the larger picture through a sampling of smaller parts. The goal is not a definitive explanation of any given topic, but rather the opening words of a conversation and an invitation to join a community of believers in asking, seeking, and knowing the fullness of God’s grace and work in the world.

To start, Tara and Eric Lopez offer a conversation between a worship pastor and a trinitarian theologian about some of the challenges of liturgy in worship in many evangelical, pentecostal, and charismatic church contexts. David Drum then reflects on the Trinity through the lens of Emmanuel – how God is with us, and Jason Koon extends this line of thought by exploring the “practical trinitarianism” of God’s triune nature and character. Next, Ann Gillian Chu presents a nuanced historical investigation of Spirit baptism by comparing the Cappadocian Fathers with Pentecostals. We then dive deep into the trinitarian journey with Bryan Burton’s Crux article, taking account of the historical, theological, and practical implications of this central Christian doctrine. Robin Martin then helps us reflect anew on the love, grace, and fellowship of the Triune God, while Gary Burnhauser offers insight into how the Trinity may be discerned in the Old Testament. Carrie Akeman returns us to the worship context, where she remembers what it was like to learn about the Trinity as a child, embracing the truth in all its mystery and wonder. To finish, Porter Taylor takes us into the 1662 Anglican Book of Common Prayer to help us see the Trinity in action through the liturgy.

Through these articles, our hope and prayer is that this community of readers will grow in their love and understanding of God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – in knowledge, yes, but also in action, community, service, proclamation, and application. To do this, I encourage you to use the accompanying Learning Guide to explore further the implications of each article for you and your community. The call to discipleship is holistic – it encompasses all aspects of our life and living. The Trinity demonstrates this holistic call not only as a doctrine of grace and wonder, but as the fullness of God’s nature and character to sustain and compel us towards his ultimate purposes in and for the world.

May you experience this grace and hope in the pages to come, and the conversations to follow.


Brant M. Himes
Managing Editor

All Holy Trinity

Holy, holy, Trinity, the Author of creation,
by a word He made the earth and set the cosmos spinning;
He, the Father, is my hope, the Author of Salvation.
He, the Son, my refuge is, eternal life beginning,
by whose death was death destroyed renewing Adam’s story,
made like us in ev’ry way, except for Adam’s sinning.
Holy Spirit, my protection, overcome my worry,
be to me the fount of life and holy inspiration;
holy, holy, Three-in-One, to Him alone be glory!

Poem by Sean Kiilehua