Trinity Sunday 2018
Immanuel Lutheran Church, Hamilton, Ohio
Pastor Kevin Jud
May 27, 2108
Isaiah 6:1-8, Acts 2:14a, 22-36, John 3:1-17

Sermons online: 
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Full Service Audio:

It is a perfect day.  The sky is clear blue, the sun is shining, the grass is green, the flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, there is a gentle breeze and you are sitting in the shade on a park bench sipping on your bottle of water and just taking a few minutes to watch the world go by in front of you.  A neatly dressed woman sits down next to you and is quiet for a few minutes as you both admire the beauty of the creation.  Without looking at you the woman asks, “Who is God?  I look around at all this beauty and know this cannot be an accident.  But who is God?  So many people have so many different opinions.  Who is God?”

You look around hoping she is talking to someone else; but you are the only one there.  Here is a great opportunity to share with someone the truth of God; but you are nervous that you may mess it up, or say something wrong.  The question resounds loudly in your head, “Who is God?”

“God is incomprehensible,” you begin, not certain exactly where you are going with this.  “We are never going to be able to understand God; we will never know everything about God.  He is the potter and we are the pot that He creates.  The pot is never going to fully understand the potter.  But that doesn’t mean that we cannot know anything about God.”

“What do we know?” she asks.

“We know that God is three in one; trinity.  I know it doesn’t make sense, but there is one God with three persons.  This is how He reveals Himself to us in the Bible.  God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.  It makes no sense, but that is sort of a proof that it is true.  Who would make up a God like that?  When people make up gods they make up gods that are a lot like us; motivated by the same things as us.”

“The Trinity doesn’t make sense.  Other things about God do not make sense.  God is eternal.  The Father is eternal.  The Son is eternal.  The Holy Spirit is eternal.  I cannot get my head around that; it seems like everything should have a beginning and an end, but God does not.”

The woman replies, “That might keep me awake at night thinking about that.  How is God eternal?”

“God is almighty.  That also does not make sense to us.  We know powerful people, but they still get sick, they still die, there are limits to people’s power.  God has unlimited power; He is outside the laws of nature; He creates the laws of nature.”  We think we are powerful but then a storm blows through and we realize how weak we really are.”

“The Trinity doesn’t make sense.  Other things about God do not make sense.  God is eternal.  The Father is eternal.  The Son is eternal.  The Holy Spirit is eternal.  I cannot get my head around that; it seems like everything should have a beginning and an end, but God does not.”

“God is holy and just.  God hates sin and evil.  God will punish sin and evil.  But God is patient and God is merciful and full of grace.  We have a problem with sin and God provides the solution to sin.  The eternal Son, Jesus, came to earth 2,000 years ago and took on human flesh.  He had no earthly Father and was born to a virgin named Mary from Nazareth.  He was sinless.  This also does not make sense to our rational selves; how can anyone be born of a virgin?  How can Jesus be both God and man?  How can He be without sin?  But He is.  It is God’s plan for salvation.  God provides the sacrifice for sin.  God in flesh takes the punishment for sin for all people.  God provides His only Son as the sacrifice in order to save all people.  John 3:16 (ESV) 16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.[1]  We are called to repent and believe.  We are called to turn away from sin and look to Jesus on the cross for forgiveness.”

“So God demands payment for sin, but then pays the price Himself.” the woman says.

“Right.  That’s another way we know that the true God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Virtually every other religion in the world is based on you having to DO something to be saved; that makes sense.  That’s how we would do it if we made it up ourselves.  The truth is that God has already DONE it all for you.  Trust in the promises of God.  Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead to prove that He is indeed God in flesh and that His death is sufficient.”

The woman asks, “How do we know Jesus rose from the dead?”

“We have eyewitness accounts.  Matthew, Mark and John were there and saw what happened and wrote it down.  Luke talked to eyewitnesses and wrote their accounts.  There are a lot of people who are willing to die for what they believe to be true, the 11 apostles knew the truth about whether Jesus rose from the dead or not.  They knew the truth and 10 of the 11 were put to death for preaching the resurrection of Jesus.  If Jesus had not risen from the dead these men would have just gone back to their previous lives.”

“So Jesus really is God,” the woman said, “and God is God the Father.  And then there is the Holy Spirit?  What does the Holy Spirit do?”

“The Holy Spirit is the breath of God; the Spirit of God, that lives in you and gives you faith to believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God; to believe your sins are forgiven through Jesus’ death and resurrection.  The Spirit does not point to itself, but rather always points you to Jesus.”

“Is there really a devil?” the woman asks.

“Yes,” you reply, the devil is always trying to pull you away from faith in God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and to develop faith in something else; anything else; faith in a made up God or faith in yourself.  The devil wants to convince you that if God doesn’t make sense then God is just something someone made up.  But the very opposite is true.  If God made sense then God would be something someone just made up.  But God does not make sense.  God is incomprehensible.  His love for us is incomprehensible.”

“Knowing all this; knowing Jesus died for our sins; what are we supposed to do?” the woman asks.

“Live in the love and forgiveness of God.  Continue to repent of your sins and struggle against sin.  Love God, and love, forgive and serve others.  Love your enemies.  Pray for them.”

“Who is God?  That is a big question,” the woman said.  “We will never know everything.”

“But we know enough,” you say, “enough to know the way to eternal life.

“Thank you,” she says, “good talk,” and as quickly as she came, she gets up and walks away.

You didn’t get her name.  You didn’t find out where she is from.  You didn’t tell her your name.  You just talked about God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  And that is enough.  Amen.

[1]  The Holy Bible : English Standard Version. Wheaton : Standard Bible Society, 2001

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