Father, Son and Holy Spirit – Gospel in Life

Father, Son and Holy Spirit

Tim Keller |  January 15, 2006

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  • God the Father
  • The Holy Spirit
Mark 1:9-13
RS 190-02


On the surface of it, the Christian teaching about the Trinity is very difficult. It overloads the mental circuits. The doctrine of the Trinity is that God is one God, eternally existent in three persons. That’s not tritheism, where there’s really three gods who stick together a lot and like each other. And it’s not unipersonalism, which is really one God who sometimes takes this form, and sometimes takes this form—different forms in different places.

Trinitarianism is that there’s one God in three persons who know one another and love one another. So God is not more fundamentally one than he is three, and he’s not more fundamentally three than he is one. It is cognitively difficult, but the doctrine of the Trinity is bristling and exploding with life-shaping, wonderful, glorious implications.

In Mark 1:9-13, Jesus makes his appearance. In these five little verses, we have the whole history of the world recapitulated. We learn in these five verses: there’s a dance, the greatest need of your life is to get into that dance, and Jesus is the one who can bring you in.

Mark 1:9–13

When Jesus was baptized and then faced temptation in the wilderness, he showed us who he really was, just like the New Testament describes. It also helps us understand the idea of the Trinity – the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit loving and communicating with each other. This concept of the Trinity changes how we view the world and the meaning of life, making it alike to a dance of love and respect.

2. The most important thing you need is to join that dance

We were created to join this divine dance, to honor God through both wonderful things and duties. God, who is full of joy, wants us to share in his glory and invites us to this dance. He doesn’t do this to get our love and worship, but to share his happiness with us and help us make our lives about him. To join in this dance, we need to obey God completely and make our relationship with him the center of our lives. This might sound scary, but it brings true fulfillment.

3. Jesus is the one who can bring you in

The story of Jesus being tempted in the desert is similar to when Adam was tempted in the Garden of Eden, but Jesus faced even tougher challenges. Throughout his life, Jesus was tempted, with the hardest temptation happening in Gethsemane. This shows us how important it is to live a life focused on God and obeying him, rather than chasing personal benefits. Jesus, who is like a second Adam, gives us hope and a new way to relate with God.



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