A Sermon for Trinity Sunday

2 Corinthians 13.11-end; Matthew 28 16-20

7th June 2020


The problem of the Holy Trinity is a bit like the problem of riding a bike. The art of cycling rests on a paradox: you have to balance in order to move, but you can’t move unless you balance. If you think about this too hard while you are in motion, you will almost certainly fall off. The doctrine of the Holy Trinity rests on any number of paradoxes, and as soon as you start asking the difficult questions (How can the Father be his own Son? If Jesus is God, whom is he praying to? Is the Holy Spirit the Spirit of Jesus, or the Father, or both?) then you land with a bump on the pavement.


But, just as cycling comes quite naturally once you know how to do it, so the Holy Trinity makes perfect sense in the context of our Christian life. We know that God relates to us as the creator and sustainer of the universe, as the compassionate healer who shares the joy and pain of our human existence, and as the Spirit who challenges and encourages us. Our language may fail us, but our experience does not.


The poet Michael Donaghy wrote about a racing bike in a poem that contains this lovely line: "The machinery of grace is always simple". I think this gives us a very helpful way to think about the Trinity - as the machinery through which God’s grace is shared with us. If the very essence of God is relationship - the ceaseless movement of love between the three persons of the Trinity - then we, who are made in God’s image, are also called into loving relationship with him and with one another.


So, I pray that this Sunday you may know the blessing of the Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.


May the joy of the Creator fill your souls,

May the grace of the Saviour fill your hearts,

May the power of the Spirit fill your lives,

May the love of the Three and the love of the One

Abide with you and never depart.


Amen.


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