• Shane St Reynolds


I recently had some of my friends ask me What is the Trinity? Is God the same as Jesus? These questions are always asked by someone who is exploring faith in Jesus. After all, they’re good questions. And confusing ones. God the Father. God the Son. God the Holy Spirit. One God? Hmmm… Firstly to think we will ever fully understand the Trinity is to make the mistake of thinking God is fully understandable. God is infinite. He is beyond us. Trying to “fully understand” God is like a 2-year-old trying to “fully understand” the complexities of relationships, marriage, and parenting!

Believe it or not, the fact that God is too immense for our finite minds should be comforting, not discouraging! After all, as I have said many times (to myself as much as others!)…

"If God was small enough for my brain to fully understand, He wouldn’t be big enough to save me!”

The authors of the Bible understood this. That’s why they wrote words like we find in Job 11:7-8…

"Can you fathom the depths of God or discover the limits of the Almighty? They are higher than the heavens—what can you do?”

…and Isaiah 55:9…

"For as heaven is higher than earth, so my ways are higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

Simply put: God is big. Really big.

The Simplest – but Still Clear – Explanation for the Trinity

The next time you (or I) are asked to explain the Trinity, you could start with a 1-sentence definition and then unpack that definition. That way we’re providing a simple, common language and framework for everything else we’re going to say (or any analogies we use).

The 1-Sentence Definition

"The Trinity is the foundational Christian belief that God is one Being who exists in three Persons.”

God is the Father, the Son (Jesus), and the Holy Spirit. The Father is God. Jesus (the Son) is God. The Holy Spirit is God. ONLY the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are God.

While this is – in my mind – the simplest, clearest explanation, I understand that even this breaks down when we go further and say “I am a human and I am Shane. But Shane is not every human being.”

This is absolutely true. That is where I go back to the “starting point” I mentioned above. There will always be some level of mystery to this, but when you talk about the being/nature/essence as “God” and the persons/expressions as “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” I think we get at least a little bit closer to beginning to comprehend something we can never fully comprehend.

Here is a helpful video!

Sources: Keithferrin & Bible Project