Today I officially recorded 10,000 hits on my blog. I have had the blog up since March 2006. Thanks to all of those who have stopped by. I know that hits are not the best measure of web exposure. (Many of those hits are made by me reloading the page!) The number of hits is the largest number as I look at the stats on my page — so it something to celebrate. I have had nearly 4,400 unique visitors this year alone and 942 returning visitors. That is amazing.
I have been doing some writing, reading, reflecting on the Trinity today and I came across this idea of the impact of Trinitarian theology on worship. The thought is from J.B. Torrance in Worship, Community and the Triune God of Grace. (A good little book on the trinity. Why are so many books about the Trinity so small?!?)
Here is the quote:
By his Spirit he (Jesus) draws men and women to participate both in his life of worship and communion with the Father and in his mission from the Father to the world.
The concept is that the Father and Son have had an eternal relationship and by the Spirit we get to enter in.
I dislike the concept that the Holy Spirit is the bond of love between the Father and the Son, which is a part of JBT’s thinking here. The idea goes back to Augustine who said in On the Trinity that God is the lover (the Father), the loved (the Son) and the love itself (the Holy Spirit). I see why this is attractive presentation of the Trinity. It is Christ centered. It is biblically verifiable. It formed a theological launching pad for others to build upon. Barth used similar categories to describe the Triune God as Revealer, Revelation, and the means of revelation (i.e. God himself reveals himself through himself). Nevertheless, it depersonalizes the Spirit who is “the Lord and Giver of Life.”
JBT’s idea has some merit. I would just say that the Triune God has had an eternal relationship among all three persons. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit have all been existing (subsisting) in an heavenly relationship for all eternity. And now God the Father, who is the head, opens up his two hands (the Son and the Holy Spirit) and through the Son’s death and resurrection and the Spirit’s outpouring, we have been invited to participant in this eternal relationship.
The triune God lived in self-existent harmony with himself. Jonathan Edwards says “God is infinitely happy in the enjoyment of Himself.” BUT because God is love he opens up his infinitely happy community and invites us in. We were living our lives isolated from God. Away from the enjoyment that God has in relationship with himself. We were as C.S. Lewis says, “fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.” (from The Weight of Glory).
And then the Father sent his Son and through his Son he sent his Spirit to whisper in our ear…
“there is more”….
“there is redemption” …
“there is a kingdom” ….
“there is a community of One.”
As we turn by faith to the sound of the voice, we are whisked away into a relationship of knowing, praising and serving the Triune God.
This is worship.