The Nicene Creed begins with the statement: “We believe in one God.” Why does the creed specify one God? To contest the idea that there are multiple gods. Christianity claims to believe in one God who created and rules all things versus multiple gods interacting with creation. As the creed continues, it mentions two other persons who proceed from the Father: Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Even so, our God is one. God is three persons yet one God: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. And each person is fully God. This is the teaching of the Trinity.
God’s Oneness in the Old Testament
Throughout the Old Testament, God’s oneness is affirmed. Deuteronomy 6:4 says, “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.” Exodus 15:11 explains that there is no one like God, for He is unique. Isaiah 45 verses 5 and 21 teach that the God of the Bible is the one and only God. He is greater and truer than any false god.
God’s Oneness in the New Testament
The New Testament also declares God’s oneness. In 1 Timothy 2:5, Paul states that there is one God. In 1 Corinthians 8:6, Paul again affirms that God is one by declaring, “Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist.” James teaches us that even the demons believe that God is one and shudder at the thought (James 2:19). If the demons believe that God is one, it seems wise for us to believe God is one. Why do you believe He is one?
The Trinity in Scripture
It is extremely important that the authors of the Nicene Creed declared that God is one. As the Nicene Creed was written, some people were teaching heresy claiming that God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are separate gods instead of one God. We do not serve three different gods; as you’ve seen, Scripture is clear that our God is one. But the Nicene Creed mentions three different persons: God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. What does this mean? God is one, yet He exists as three persons, and each person is fully God. This is the mystery of the Trinity.
The word Trinity means three-in-oneness. Even though the word Trinity is never mentioned in the Bible, the concept is taught throughout. In Genesis 1:26, when God created man, He said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” God uses a plural pronoun implying the presence of other persons. In Matthew 28:19, some of Jesus’ last words on earth, He mentions all three persons of the Trinity as He commands the disciples to baptize new believers in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. When we come to Christian belief, we accept the triune God as He becomes a part of our daily lives. “Triune God” is simply a way to say God who is three in one.
The concept of the Trinity is a profound mystery. It’s a mystery that is crucial to our faith, since it helps us understand what God is like. The teaching of the Trinity gives us a personal look into the nature of our one God.