This question came to me via email from an academic website where I post my academic papers. The person who emailed me read my PhD entrance paper with regard to the Trinity (I will share excerpts from it in some future posts here on the blog). I am including his question and my response to him here for the benefit of our readers. Thanks for sending in your questions to Ask FMM, and keep them coming! We love answering them!
How would you best explain to someone the concept of the Trinity?
The concept of the Trinity as described by evangelical Christian theologians is that God eternally exists as one God (Deut 5:1) in three persons (Mt 28:19). Each of the three persons who comprise the Trinity exist with an eternal equality of essence (each of the persons of the Trinity eternally equally share in the divine essence of the Godhead) and an eternal distinction of persons (God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit eternally exist as three distinct persons in relation to each other). While the concept of the Trinity can be somewhat described by theologians (some recommended Systematic Theology resources which offer an excellent discussion and description of the Trinity include Ryrie, Grudem, MacArthur, Erickson, and Moody Handbook), the quote below by Oliphint reminds Christians that the Trinity will never be exhaustively described this side of eternity, as the Trinity is also a doctrine of mystery that causes Christians to pause in awe and wonder at such a majestic being as God.