In the work of creation, God the Father brought the universe into being out of nothing by the agency of His Word and His Spirit. In the first chapter of Genesis, one reads, “God created the heavens and the earth (Gen 1:1). The unformed and uninhabited earth is covered by darkness and water, but the Spirit of God is “hovering” over the waters of the earth, ready to bring form to the earth so it can be inhabited. God then speaks: “Let there be light” (Gen 1:3). Throughout the works of creation, God the Father speaks forth His Words (i.e. the Son), and the unformed

earth responds by taking the shape He commands by the agency of the Spirit who is “hovering” there. One may wonder what basis there is for assuming that the Word of God in the opening chapter of Genesis is the Son of God; yet that is the exact interpretation of the creation event given in the opening chapter of John’s Gospel. John writes, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were created through Him” (John 1:1 HCSB). Lest there be any doubt that John identifies the Word as Jesus, the Son of God, he goes on to write, “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). Thus, the work of creation is a work of the whole Trinity, each person fulfilling the role appropriate to His distinct personal identity in the Godhead.

Scripture also presents the work of redemption as the work of the one God, who is Trinity, by which He secures eternal life for His people and brings great glory to Himself. As with the work of creation, each person of the Trinity fulfills a role in the work of redemption that is appropriate to His identity as a distinct person of the Godhead. Scripture presents God the Father as the one who chooses for Himself the people who will be redeemed. Paul writes to the Romans, “For those He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son” (Rom 8:29). It is clear that the pronoun “He” refers to God the Father specifically because of the way Paul describes the Son as “His Son” (cp Eph 1:4-6). The Father is also the one who sends the Son into the world to assume a human nature and thereby to accomplish the atonement

through His death on the cross and His resurrection (John 5:24-25,37-38). While the Father chooses a people to redeem and sends the Son to accomplish the work of atonement, the Son voluntarily humbles Himself to take on a human nature and subject Himself to death for the redemption of the people chosen by God the Father (Phil 2:5-11). Only the Son became a man, endured temptation, suffered on the cross, and arose form the dead. Upon the completion of the Son’s earthly mission, the Father and The Son sent the Holy Spirit to apply the atoning work of the Son to the people whom the Father had chosen. This resulted in new life, faith, repentance, sanctification, and glorification (see John 3:3-6; 14:26; Eph 1:13-14). The Spirit also indwells the church, forming them into a holy temple, the dwelling place of God (1 Cor 3:16; Eph 2:22; 1 John 3:24).

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