I’d like to follow up on last week’s post about the Trinity, because I think we just started to get into a discussion that’s actually pretty interesting on its own. As mentioned last time, the doctrine of the Trinity is a doctrine made up of two mutually-contradictory ideas: the idea that there is one God (monotheism) and the idea that multiple, distinct, individual Persons are each fully God (polytheism). What’s more, the Church has known since the origin of Trinitarianism that these two aspects of the doctrine contradict each other, hence the need to officially declare it a “mystery” beyond the grasp of mortal reason or study.
So how, then, has the Church been successful in persuading people that the Trinity is the Truth? It seems fairly obvious: truth is consistent with itself, and the only way we have to distinguish between truth and untruth is to look for the telltale inconsistencies and contradictions that betray untruth. Yet here we have a doctrine that is not written in the Bible, was not revealed through allegedly inspired prophets, and that was adopted, after much conflict and even violence, through a political process that boiled down to deciding which side was most convincing to the greatest number of (fallible, uninspired) men. It should be easy, given a self-contradicting teaching with such a checkered past, to convince Christians that this is a false and man-made doctrine. And yet, it is not.
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