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Joseph Priestley

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We find upon all occasions, the early Christian writers speak of the Father as superior to the Son, and in general they give him the title of God, as distinguished from the Son; and sometimes they expressly call him, exclusively of the Son, the only true God; a phraseology which does not at all accord with the idea of the perfect equality of all the persons in the Trinity. But it might well be expected, that the advances to the present doctrine of the Trinity should be gradual and slow. It was, indeed, some centuries before it was completely formed.
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Part I : The History of Opinions Relating to Jesus Christ, III : The Supremacy was always ascribed to the Father before the Council Of Nice

 
Joseph Priestley

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Exegetes and theologians today are in agreement that the Hebrew Bible does not contain a doctrine of the Trinity, even though it was customary in past dogmatic tracts on the Trinity to cite texts like Genesis 1:26, "Let us make humanity in our image, after our likeness" (see also Gn. 3:22, 11:7; Is. 6:23) as proof of plurality in God. Although the Hebrew Bible depicts God as the father of Israel and employs personifications of God such as Word (davar), Spirit (ruah), Wisdom (hokhmah), and Presence (shekhinah), it would go beyond the intention and spirit of the Old Testament to correlate these notions with later trinitarian doctrine. Further, exegetes and theologians agree that the New Testament also does not contain an explicit doctrine of the Trinity. God the Father is source of all that is (Pantokrator) and also the father of Jesus Christ; "Father" is not a title for the first person of the Trinity but a synonym for God. Early liturgical and creedal formulas speak of God as "Father of our Lord Jesus Christ"; praise is to be rendered to God through Christ (see opening greetings in Paul and deutero-Paul).

 
Mircea Eliade
 

The high Might of the Trinity is our Father, and the deep Wisdom of the Trinity is our Mother, and the great Love of the Trinity is our Lord: and all this have we in Nature and in the making of our Substance.

 
Julian of Norwich
 

TRINITY. Trinitarian doctrine touches on virtually every aspect of Christian faith, theology, and piety, including Christology and pneumatology, theological epistemology (faith, revelation, theological methodology), spirituality and mystical theology, and ecelesial life (sacraments, community, ethics). This article summarizes the main lines of trinitarian doctrine without presenting detailed explanations of important ideas, persons, or terms. The doctrine of the Trinity is the summary of Christian faith in God, who out of love creates humanity for union with God, who through Jesus Christ redeems the world, and in the power of the Holy Spirit transforms and divinizes (2 Cor. 3:18). The heart of trinitarian theology is the conviction that the God revealed in Jesus Christ is involved faithfully and unalterably in covenanted relationship with the world. Christianity is not unique in believing God is "someone" rather than something," but it is unique in its belief that Christ is the personal Word of God, and that through Christ's death and resurrection into new life, "God was in Christ reconciling all things to God" (2 Cor. 5:19). Christ is not looked upon as an intermediary between God and world but as an essential agent of salvation. The Spirit poured out at Pentecost, by whom we live in Christ and are returned to God (Father), is also not a "lesser God" but one and the same God who creates and redeems us. The doctrine of the Trinity is the product of reflection on the events of redemptive history, especially the Incarnation and the sending of the Spirit.

 
Mircea Eliade
 

Suddenly I saw the red blood trickle down from under the Garland hot and freshly and right plenteously, as it were in the time of His Passion when the Garland of thorns was pressed on His blessed head who was both God and Man, the same that suffered thus for me. I conceived truly and mightily that it was Himself shewed it me, without any mean.
And in the same Shewing suddenly the Trinity fulfilled my heart most of joy. And so I understood it shall be in heaven without end to all that shall come there. For the Trinity is God: God is the Trinity; the Trinity is our Maker and Keeper, the Trinity is our everlasting love and everlasting joy and bliss, by our Lord Jesus Christ. And this was shewed in the First and in all: for where Jesus appeareth, the blessed Trinity is understood, as to my sight.

 
Julian of Norwich
 

We do, then, with all earnestness, though without reproaching our brethren, protest against the irrational and unscriptural doctrine of the Trinity. "To us," as to the Apostle and the primitive Christians, "there is one God, even the Father." With Jesus, we worship the Father, as the only living and true God. We are astonished, that any man can read the New Testament, and avoid the conviction, that the Father alone is God.

 
William Ellery (preacher) Channing
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