Worshipping Trinity

How can I sum up my book Worshipping Trinity in a single paragraph? How about this? -

Christian worship should seek to bring God’s church into a dynamic encounter with the Christian God – the Holy Trinity. It will ceaselessly and effortlessly move back and forth between the threeness of God and the unity of God. It will shift focus from Father, to Son, to Spirit and back again in a restless celebration of divine love and mystery. It will also highlight the perichoretic relations within the Godhead by not allowing the worshippers to lose sight of any of the Persons. At times the worship will draw the Father into focus however the Son and Spirit will be there, out of focus but still in our field of awareness. Other times the Son will attract our attention but not insuch a way that we do not see Father and Spirit. When the Spirit attracts our worshipping attention it will always be as the Spirit of the Father and the Spirit of the Son. Worship that makes us aware of the inter-relationships within God is fully Trinitarian worship. Trinitarian worship is always ‘through the Son’ and ‘in the Spirit’but is woven from an ever-changing mosaic of songs, prayers, Bible readings, testimonies, Spirit-gifts, sermons, Holy Communion, drama, dance, art and more besides. The variety is endless and the possibilities infinite but at the heart of it all stands the mystery of the Holy Trinity. That is what Christian worship is.

Worshipping Trinity, p. 185


Anonymous said…
Hi Robin,

Great quote! Can I respond with a longish quote from my own book (Christian Doctrine - sorry, SCM rather than Paternoster) which tried to capture the same sort of idea, but in a set of 'rules' for Christian life?
"(1) Christians are never so filled with the Spirit that they can dispense with being disrupted by Jesus; never so spiritual that they do not need to be judged by his self-giving on the cross: there is no getting beyond Jesus by means of the Spirit. To think otherwise is to speak of a different Spirit from that spoken of in the New Testament.
(2) Christians can have no relationship to Jesus which is not already some kind of living in the Spirit; without the Spirit making him present Jesus will recede into the past or be absent in heaven, and the believer can have nothing to do with him: there is no going to Jesus except by the Spirit. To think otherwise is to speak of a Jesus different from the risen, present Christ spoken of in the New Testament.
(3) Christians never approach so close to the Father that they can forget about the life, death and resurrection of Jesus; they can never find a place in the heart of the Father where there is no presence of the crucified and risen one: there is no leaving Jesus behind on the way to God. To think otherwise is to speak of a Father other than the ‘Father of our Lord Jesus Christ’ spoken of in the New Testament
(4) Christians cannot rest content with looking at Jesus as an historical figure whose influence and importance is limited to one sphere; they cannot face Jesus without being faced with the question of how he reveals to us the one who is always and everywhere present and relevant, the one he called Father: there is no following Jesus without attending to the Father. To think otherwise is to think of a Jesus who is not the beloved Son spoken of in the New Testament.
(5) Christians can never so rely on the Spirit within them that they ignore the Spirit's relation to creation, sustaining and redeeming of the whole world; there is no keeping the Spirit to a private 'religious' realm; there is no Spirit without that love and justice that are the Father’s life: there is no Spirit without the Father. To think otherwise is to speak of a Spirit other than the Spirit of the kingdom of the Father spoken of in the New Testament.
(6) Christians cannot relate to the Father simply as the distant clockmaker behind the Universe, the deists’ God who has no impact upon life except in a rarefied intellectual worship; to relate to the Father is to be caught up by his Spirit into intimate, revolutionary relationship with him: there is no relating to the Father without the Spirit. To think otherwise is to speak of a Father who is not the sender of the Spirit spoken of in the New Testament."

Are we saying the same kind of thing, do you think?
Robin Parry said…

That is fabulous! Really fabulous! I would wholeheartedly affirm everything that you said.

Most certainly on the same page

Lauren said…
I finished your book late last year and have been hyper-aware of the trinity in the Scriptures, prayer and songs ever since.

I just wanted to let you know that Christine Denté's new album Voyage (from CDBaby.com) has a beautiful song entitled Trinity.

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