Holy Trinity is LOVE!: Trinity Sunday
Sermon by Emmanuel Suntheni OSB – Trinity Sunday –
Sermon And Christian Act In The Word
Theme: Divine Presence of God and Salvific Cooperation! Holy Trinity is LOVE!
Point of Reflection: The celebration of Holy Trinity is the celebration of love, for God the Father send his Son to redeem us and the Holy Spirit works and operates in us, this is love and salvific cooperation. Therefore as Christians, we must always pray TO the Father, THROUGH the Son, IN the Holy Spirit”.
This is the LOVE God has shown to Humanity. The heart of Christian Faith is in the Triune God: there is LOVE among the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: That’s our Faith. Our Faith in the Trinity rests on God’s revelation of Himself in the economy of Salvation. We do not have access to the Trinity outside what God has revealed to us by sending His only Son and giving us the Holy Spirit.
God has revealed Himself to humanity as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
What is most important for us Christians to understand is that, the three divine persons the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are present all time and they act in the world by one single action because the divine action is Trinitarian.
The mystery of the Holy Trinity is the central mystery of the Christian Faith. In the Hierarchy of the Truth of Faith, Trinity is the highest point of all the Truth of Faith. However, there is a need to understand that there is Immanent Trinity and Economic Trinity. Immanent Trinity simply means that the Way the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit communicate within themselves is eternal and they know each other better within the self-communication and they are one and distinct. And how do we know that there is God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit?
Thus, the Economic Trinity. The way the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit have revealed themselves to us is the Economic Salvation History and thus, the Economic Trinity: it is the Trinity that came to be known or recognised in the History of Salvation according to God’s plan, the will of God. That is why we know God as the Father, and as the Father, He sent His only begotten Son to redeem us (humanity), and sent the Holy Spirit to Strengthen and act, and by the action of the Holy Spirit, humanity is empowered ad equipped for the mission.
That is why in our faith we need to pray TO the Father, THROUGH the Son, IN the Holy Spirit.
Glory be to the Father, through the Son, and in the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be the world without end, Amen. At the heart of the doctrine of the Holy Trinity is the mystery of three persons, Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit, who are distinct and yet one. Today’s Scriptural readings reveal that these three persons exist and act in communion which affects believers in most profound ways.
First Reading: Proverbs 8:22–31
Psalm: Psalm 8:4–9
Second Reading: Romans 5:1–5
Gospel: John 16:12–15
Sermon (Reflection): The first Scriptural reading tells us about the Father who is the creator, the second Scriptural reading tells us about the SON, and the Gospel of today tell us about the Holy Spirit.
The first reading contains a speech of “Lady Wisdom” – the most significant character in the book of Proverbs (cf. Prov 9:1-2) – who describes the creative work of the first person of the Holy Trinity – God. Lady Wisdom plays a central role in the process of creation. In the biblical writings, representing an idea or an abstract concept as a human figure is known as “personification”. In our reading, Lady Wisdom represents God’s design for an orderly and harmonious creation. She is a personified divine blueprint for life, an expression of God’s desire to bring the cosmos into existence and for creating life. God “gives birth” to creation through Lady Wisdom who represents God’s life-giving work.
The author emphasises that Wisdom “rejoiced” before God and “took delight” in the human race. This rejoicing of Wisdom highlights the goodness and splendour of God, inherent in God’s design – creation is good and delightful because it is an expression of God himself (cf. Gen 1:31). The work of the first person of the Holy Trinity was to share his own life with creation, life that is valuable and delightful. Like a mother, God brought forth life out of himself through Wisdom, also a part of himself. Being a reflection and an expression of God himself, creation and life are the greatest gifts imaginable.
The second reading focuses on the second person of the Holy Trinity – Jesus Christ. Tragically, God’s harmonious and delightful creation was disrupted by the prideful disobedience of humankind. The sin of humankind ruined the harmony of creation (cf. Gen 3:1-24) and disrupted the good relationship between God and his creatures. This disruption is strikingly revealed in the image of Adam hiding, as he hears God’s steps in the garden because he “was afraid”. Following the first sin fear and guilt become a part of life, with decay and death its inevitable end. In this situation of fallen and disrupted creation, God’s Son’s work begins.
Paul is telling us about Justification, and for Paul, justification is about making humanity righteous again through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. In Paul’s understanding, righteousness means a good and right relationship with God which was made impossible by sin. Christ’s work is to make that good relationship possible again. His work was to reverse the disastrous effects of human sin and to reconcile humanity to God, which he accomplished on the cross. With the harmony restored, the people can return to the state of peace with God for which they had originally been created.
Paul states that since Christ restored peace, believers can look forward to the sharing of God’s glory that is God’s own eternal life unaffected by death and suffering. While still subject to mortality and the effects of sin, believers nevertheless have the prospect of returning to the state and form of life which God originally created. Living with this hope in a fallen world, and patiently enduring adversity, believers reach maturity in the faith. Their future is already sealed and decided thanks to the salvific work of the second person of the Holy Trinity, who came into the fallen world to restore the lost harmony between God and the people, and to defeat death.
The Gospel reading focuses on the work of the third person of the Holy Trinity, thus, the Holy Spirit. Jesus’ words reported here were delivered during the last supper with his disciples. Knowing that the disciples are deeply saddened and overwhelmed by the prospect of his departure, Jesus offers them a series of reassurances and instructions for the future. Among others, Jesus speaks extensively about the Holy Spirit and the Spirit’s work among and in them. Jesus reveals that the Holy Spirit will continue to instruct and guide them, as he, Jesus, himself has done before. They will not be left alone. Through the Holy Spirit Jesus will continue to speak to them and instruct them, so that they will reach ever fuller understanding of his message and teaching, they will be led to the “full truth”.
Furthermore, the Holy Spirit will “glorify Jesus”. In the Gospel of John, to “glorify” means to manifest someone’s true self and identity. The Holy Spirit working in and through the disciples will continue to manifest Jesus to the world through the disciples’ exemplary life of love and commitment to Jesus’ teaching. The Holy Spirit’s work will be therefore the continuation of Jesus’ salvific work in the fallen world until it is brought to completion at the end of times.
Christian Act in Word of God “Living by the Love of the Holy Trinity”
The Scriptures presents us with the harmonious work of the persons of the Holy Trinity, as an example to contemplate, and to follow. God created the world intending that all his creatures live in harmony and peace. The unhealthy ambition and pride of humankind distorted this divine harmony with numerous and far-ranging negative effects. Death and conflict are the evidence of this disruption. However, this fallen state of creation is temporary, rather than permanent. It is reversible and it lies within our human power to take steps towards this reversal. Indeed, we constantly face chaos and disruptions in our lives. Unhealthy ambition and selfishness plague us on daily basis. However, at the same time, we are God’s children aware of God’s design and purpose for our world and creation.
We too have wisdom! We too can act as creators of harmony and order around us. In our communities and groups, in our families and schools, we can be the agents of peace and harmony.
It is within our power to reverse the chaos and disorder in a measure that the situation allows.
Moreover, humankind now has the power to affect the natural world. For far too long we have ignored this power and used it recklessly. The ensuing environmental crisis is evidence of our power and its misuse. As God’s children, we are also responsible for the well-being and harmony of the natural world.
It begins with our refusal to pollute and destroy the environment even on the smallest scale. By being agents of harmony and order we act like our God, the creator.
Action: My very existence is the reflection and outcome of God’s wisdom. God delights in me! I will thank God daily for the creation that surrounds me, and for my being a part of it.
Prayer:O Holy Triune God, teach us to live always in your presence of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and to imitate your salvific work through works of love, harmony and peace. Help us to be good collaborators of your salvific actions, we ask this to the Father, through the Son, in the Holy Spirit, Amen.
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