Trinitarian theology widespread

The more I learn about the Triune God, the more I am finding that this "rediscovery" of the Trinity is being experienced all over the Christian world. The Worldwide Church of God is not alone in coming to greater understanding of Trinitarian theology. And it's not just Baxter Kruger or the Torrance brothers. It's kind of like when you buy a new car; you start seeing that model everywhere. I've noticed many in the Christian world are reexamining our faith from the viewpoint of the Trinity, and it excites me! I just found an interview with Larry Crabb on Christianity Today's website that is wonderful. Regarding his vision for the formation of caring congregations, Mr. Crabb was asked whether his idea can be taught.

He replied: "It starts with a recognition of impoverished theology. Eugene Peterson was scheduled to appear at a conference on spiritual formation. I phoned him to ask what he would speak on. 'Our Trinitarian theology in the evangelical church is thin,' he said. Until it gets thicker, we're not going to make much progress in this whole area of spiritual formation. God is in eternal community, a radically other-centered relationship where the Father is always saying, Isn't my Son something?! The Son's always saying, Look at the Father. And the Spirit is always saying, Look at Jesus. Until we start pondering the mystery of the Trinity, we won't have a clue that we're a million miles from it in terms of community. People need to be overwhelmed by the Trinitarian community."

Crabb was then asked, "How do you put that in practical terms?"

His reply: "Are you familiar with the word perichoresis? It's a word fourth-century
monks came up with to help laymen think about the Trinity: peri meaning
"around" and choretic coming from 'choreography.' It's 'dancing around.' When (Eugene) Peterson teaches the Trinity, he says to visualize the Trinity having a square dance. Can you hear the rhythm of the Spirit and enter the dance? I think it means God is having a good time. When we understand community like that, we will realize we're missing something here. "

This interview was done in 2004. I am encouraged that God is allowing us to be a part of this rediscovery of His Triune nature and that it is something He is doing among many parts of the Body of Christ. I hope this encourages you!

The complete article can be found at:

Jerome Ellard


Ted Johnston said…
It's been interesting to me to observe the journey of Larry Crabb as a Christian counselor and educator. I've had the pleasure of reading some of his books and hearing him at a couple of conferences spread over several years.

I think it fair to say that Crabb has moved from a program-driven perspective to a "communitarian" perspective that focuses on our participation together in the Trinitarian life.

I think Crabb sees the value of this approach on many fronts, including helping people deal with their psychological dysfunction. And in that regard, he sees the church as the "healing community" par excellence.

So what do people need? For Crabb I think the bottom line is that they need to live out within Christ-centered, Spirit-formed community the life shared by the Father, through the Son in the Spirit. Here we see the application of a Trinitarian theology.
Thanks Jerome! This certainly encourages and inspires me! The confirming work of the Holy Spirit is undeniable to me at this present time!

I have read this article and liked every bit of it! Especially appreciated Larry's last comment regarding having a Trinitarian vision of community that brings rest AND real work!! Wow! The Paradox!!!

Keep on sharing in that Good stuff brother!!!
Nomosian said…
As much as I enjoy the works of Crabb, a point of correction is in order. Perichoresis does not refer to a Trinitarian dance. That conclusion, long refuted, arose from a confused etymology over the root morpheme. It's the same sort of error that led to thinking *Abba* means daddy (another erroneous conclusion long refuted).
Ted Johnston said…
Greetings Nomosian. I agreee with your conclusion as to the meaning of the word "perichoresis."