Sermon for June 16, 2019 Trinity Sunday “Trinity’s Intrigue”
Let’s talk about the Trinity!
And eyes roll and thoughts drift to anywhere or anything but please not the Trinity. I must admit that with all the volumes written about the trinity over the past 2000 years my head hurts just thinking about starting a sermon on trinity. It is Trinity Sunday and it happens once a year so maybe just maybe there is something to learn about trinity and who knows, it just might be fun.
Story of tricycle.
The story of Trinity starts with Genesis. Not many pick up the fact that in the creation story God refers to Godself in the plural. “Let Us make humans in Our image, according to Our likeness” Gen1:26
From that moment on there is the dance and intermingling of Creator, Jesus and Spirit in other words; God. As soon as we think we can take one component away the whole is diminished. So it has been that way since the beginning and will be always. It remains our mission to figure out and live into this mystery.
What I find amazing is that the Trinity can exist without humans, it just does not want to. We are the ones who give substance and live to this idea of Trinity. Imbedded in each of us is the creative, redemptive and energetic spirit that brings form and wonder to Trinity. In Jesus time, all the teachings were in the context of community. There is this realization that communities are more dynamic than one person. It is awesome that that image and truth are lived out in Trinity and the teachings of Jesus are about being in community.
We are always learning new teachings. In John 16:12 Jesus says ‘I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now”. A reminder that the teachings are revealed in the path of history and that there are always new teachings and understandings and the gift of Spirit is the constant teacher when the time is right for us to hear.
I think it is why we are called to gather. For 2000 years the faithful have gathered in churches. In the past years the idea of church has diminished in stature and prestigious. The Spirit is trying to teach us to reimagine how we gather as people of Jesus. My sense is that the Spirit is nudging us to discern a way to be a gathering of seekers and not so much a gathering of folks who have the cold hard facts of what to believe and if you do not believe exactly as I do then you are out. That transition will require the full scope and expertise of the Trinity.
The sustaining force in this transition is multi-faceted; It has happened before, the nature and manner of how the faithful gathered has changed over the years and will continue to do so. The Spirit is not static and cannot be carved in stone, and we have faith. And Romans gives us an idea of the hopefulness of faith. That in the joys and challenges of living a life of faith we end up solidly in the place of hope, not any hope but hope that ‘does not disappoint because God’s love has been poured into our heart through the Holy Spirit’.
This Trinity, that has baffled, amazed and sustained followers of Jesus for 2000 years, will continue to do just that. It is into this elaborate dance of life in faith that we are called. For me, I am convinced that nothing on social media, the voices of the unconvinced or the move to secular democracy will get in the way of God’s unfolding creation, Jesus’ message of love and the delighting energy of the Spirit. In all this, Jesus says: follow me.