The Neglected Trinity

For myself, I am haunted and challenged by a former student who confessed, “I’ve professed the Trinity before, but I now see that I’ve basically worshiped and lived as a unitarian. The church failed to explain to me what the Trinity is, and why it matters.” Based on conversations with colleagues in several traditions, it seems safe to conclude that this student speaks for hundreds if not thousands of students in congregations, colleges and even seminaries, who live, work and praise as functional deists within otherwise orthodox traditions and institutions.

John D. Witvliet, “What to Do with Our Renewed Trinitarian Enthusiasm: Forming Trinitarian Piety and Imagination through Worship and Catechesis,” in Trinitarian Theology for the Church: Scripture, Community, Worship, 239 

Teaching and Professing

A significant part of learning has always been achieved through teachers who bear witness to the beauty or significance of their subjects, who generate a contagious enthusiasm for their material—teachers, that is, who are literally professors. While effective teaching should always strive for language that is precise, clear and focused, effective teaching about God should also aspire to language that is evocative, doxological and full of conviction.

—John D. Witvliet, “What to Do with Our Renewed Trinitarian Enthusiasm: Forming Trinitarian Piety and Imagination through Worship and Catechesis,” in Trinitarian Theology for the Church: Scripture, Community, Worship, 249-50

 

 

Attitude of Prayer

Almighty God, who hast promised to hear the petitions of those who ask in Thy Son’s Name: we beseech Thee mercifully to incline Thine ears to us who have now made our prayers and supplications unto Thee; and grant that those things which we have faithfully asked according to Thy will, may effectually be obtained, to the relief of our necessity, and to the setting forth of Thy glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

—Book of Common Prayer (1928)

All to Him

We do exhort men to worship God neither in a frigid nor a careless manner. . . . His benefits towards ourselves we extol as eloquently as we can, while we call upon others to reverence His Majesty, render due homage to His greatness, feel due gratitude for His mercies, and unite in showing forth His praise.

—John Calvin, On the Necessity of Reforming the Church http://www.lgmarshall.org/Calvin/calvin_necessityreform.html

All Glory (2)

Each aspect of worship, preaching, praying, sacraments all involve the glorification of God on the basis of what He has already done for us. It is also the heart of the missionary task of the church. It is the final joy of the saints, to rest from their labors, and the goal and purpose of all creation. “Our being changed from glory into glory is itself for the greater glory of God.” (Geoffrey Wainwright)

—John Thompson, “The Trinity and Worship,” in Modern Trinitarian Perspectives, 103-4