07 Editorial - Mystery of Mysteries - Fr Anthony Charanghat

posted May 23, 2018, 10:21 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated May 24, 2018, 10:23 PM ]
The focus of the feast of the Trinity – the mystery of Mysteries – is really the summit or the heart of God’s revelation of Himself to us. Any one who hopes to approach God as He really is, must approach Him as Trinity. From the very beginning several religious quests of a God experience has been intuitively Trinitarian. The mystery of the doctrine of Trinity of One God in three Persons, each distinct, but still one God that defies rational analysis, makes Christian faith distinctive.

Jesus commands the disciples to baptise ‘in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.’ Paul embeds the person of Jesus in the mystery of the Godhead. In John, Thomas confesses that Jesus is ‘My Lord and my God.’ It took centuries for the Church to find the best words, but from the very beginning, in Jesus, God is glimpsed as Triune.

First, in Christ, we discover that God is love. It is not just that God loves, but that God is, at the very core of His being, love. When we love, we share in the very life of God. If God were alone from all eternity, then God could not be love. There would have been no one and nothing to love until Creation. Love would be accidental to God, and so God could stop loving which is against the eternal essence of God's love.

The ancient doxology prayer is familiar to all of us. “Glory be to the Father... As it was in the beginning, is now and ever will be, world without end.” God always was three in one, is three in one, will always be three in One. Our ancient faith expresses the enduring truth about God. God did not become three; God will never stop being three.

But would it not be enough for there to be just two persons of the Godhead? Why three? This is not primarily a mathematical statement, as if we could get to heaven and count the persons of the Trinity. It points towards a unique love which is utterly mutual, but which overflows, as the love of the Father and the Son overflows in the Holy Spirit.

When parents have children, they too learn that love which spills over beyond the couple. Love becomes Trinitarian as its mutuality is opened towards others. Otherwise, our love might become introverted and narcissistic. So the doctrine of the Trinity is not abstract celestial mathematics. It is the most down to earth practical lesson in the mystery of generous and fruitful love.

But why then do we insist that God is one? God is a love which is completely one. 'There is no other God like our God'. Could we not settle for three gods, happily loving each other from all eternity, like an everlasting happy family? The Trinity points to the utter unity of God - a flow of relationships of Love between Father, Son and Holy Spirit - and ourselves, who gathers us into the concord of His being.

From the earliest times a profound Christian spirituality, has been an experience of the mystery of this Triune love of God creating, redeeming and guiding us, which is fully revealed in Jesus. The everyday ordinary loving of a Christian disciple is marked with this mystery. It is a love which lifts us into communion equality, as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are equal. It is this communion that frees us from self-sufficient individualism, domination and manipulation.

Trinity is a fertile love, overflowing beyond itself. It draws us into unity with one another and with God, overthrowing divisions between nations, saints and sinners, the living and the dead. As we allow ourselves to be drawn into the life, the love of the Triune God, we discover the mystery that is ourselves, and, indeed, the mystery of one another!