When we say we are “Father-Son” or OTG (One True God),
many think we don’t believe in the Holy Spirit. But we do!
Without controversy the “Spirit is just as much a person as God is a person.”
And the Holy Spirit is “the third person of the Godhead” (DA671)
just not the third person IN the Godhead. What’s the difference?
It all depends on what you understand the word Godhead to mean.
1. Godhead is a person “God is the head of Christ” (1Cor 11:3)
who is the express image of His person (Heb 1:3)
2. Godhead is a group typically a triad, trio or trinity
though there is no single Scripture that actually says this.
I understand the difference, but why object to the T-word?
Well, for one thing it’s not in the Bible.
Yet we use and recognize many theological expressions that aren't in Scripture.
Such as Incarnation, Ceremonial Law, Imputed Righteousness, saved by Faith Alone.
And then there are the popular Godhead terms like “God the Son” and “God the Holy Spirit.”
Commonly used but also extra-Biblical.
Still, we don’t have to be triskaphobics—fearing the number 3!
I believe in the Heavenly Trio and the Three Greatest Powers of heaven.
However, I prefer to accept the language of Ellen’s original handwritten manuscript:
“three living personalities of the Heavenly Trio”. Here is how she understood the Trio:
1. “God the Father of Whom are all things” (1Cor 8:6; PP761.4).
The Father only has the personality of divinity.
And, being in the form of God, He is Spirit (John 4:24).
2. The divine Son of God is also a living personality of divinity.
He is also “in the form of God” (Phil 2:6).
He was with God in the beginning as the Word (John 1:1)
"made a quickening Spirit" (1Cor 15:45)
the Messenger of the covenant (Mal 3:1)
the Angel of the Lord (Isa 63:9).
But, unlike the Father, the Son has two personalities.
3. The Word (the Son of God) was made flesh and dwelled among us (John 1:14).
He clothed His divinity with humanity (she said this 462 times)
to become the Son of man (Ms58-1896.12; Ms45-1892.2; RH1881Mar8.6).
He is “the only Being in all the universe
to enter into all the counsels and purposes of God” (GC 493.1)
with both a human and divine personality (Lt11-1887.15).
OK, let’s examine these references.
“The Son of God became the Son of man. He [the Son of God] was born of a woman...
Though He was the Son of God, the maker of the worlds and all things,
yet He took the part of a servant, so that we might believe that He loved us
and gave Himself to us and for us.” Ms45-1892.2
“Jesus...He clothed his divinity [as the Son of God] with humanity,
and thus became the Son of man, a Saviour and Redeemer.” RH1881Mc8.6
“He [the Son of God] humbled Himself to become a member of the earthly family,
and by partaking of our nature He became the Son of man, the Son of Adam,
and a brother to every son and daughter of our fallen race.” Ms58-1896.12
12 Times from 1887 to 1904 Ellen describes the “two natures” of Christ.
First in 1887, commenting on Philippians 2 and Hebrews 2, she says,
“He presents before us His two natures, divine and human.
Here is the description of the divine,
who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God (Phil 2:6).
He was the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person. (Heb 1:3)
Now of the human:
He was made in the likeness of man and found Himself in fashion as a man. (Phil 2:7,8)
He was in all things like unto us (Heb 2:17).
He was all the while as God, but He did not appear as God.
...He divested Himself of the form of God and in its stead
took the form and fashion of a man.” Lt11-1887.15
8 years later she wrote:
“Cumbered with humanity, Christ could not be in every place personally;
therefore it was altogether for their advantage that He should leave them,
go to His Father, and send the Holy Spirit to be His successor on earth.
The Holy Spirit is Himself, divested of the personality of humanity,
and independent thereof. He would represent Himself as present in all places
by His Holy Spirit, as the Omnipresent.” Lt119-1895.18
First, He divested the form of God, His divine nature with all the omni’s
and clothed his divine identity with human nature to become the Son of man,
while still remaining His identity as actually being the Son of God.
Then, He divested the personality of humanity,
to send His Spirit, the Spirit of truth (because He is the truth) John 14:6
“that element which is all divine” AH350
to be with us “always, even to the end of the world” Mat 28:20
Finally, in 1904:
“Was the human nature of the Son of Mary changed into the divine nature
of the Son of God?—No; the two natures were mysteriously blended
in one person—the Man Christ Jesus.” Lt280-1904.9
The divine nature of the Son of God blended with the human nature of the Son of man.
Three personalities, but only two persons with whom we fellowship 1John 1:3
The Father, a divine Spirit, and the Son with two “blended” personalities.
So, where is the Holy Spirit?
Matt 28:19 is the go-to verse that groups the three in a unique baptismal formula:
“Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.” It was one of Ellen White’s most popular verses.
She quoted it 364 times, AND she explained her understanding of it in RH1897Oct26.9:
“...in the name of the Father [a personal God],
and of the Son [a personal Prince and Saviour],
and of the Holy Ghost [sent from heaven to reresent Christ]”
The following year she wrote:
“There is a personal God, the Father; there is a personal Christ, the Son.”
So, there are two personals and the representative of a personal.
The Father is Holy and the Father is Spirit,
the “Spirit of your Father which is in you” Mat10:20
“God sent His only begotten Son into the world” 1 John 4:9,
who “was in all points tempted as we are” (Heb 4:15)
but overcame sin (Rev 3:21) and learned obedience (Heb 5:8)
by trusting in His Father who dwelled in him (John 14:10).
Then God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts (Gal 4:6)
so that we, too, may have victory over the world (1John 5:5).
The Spirit of Christ was in the prophets “searching what or what manner of time”
when Christ would come (1Peter 1:10,11).
If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His. Rom 8:9
And the Lord is that Spirit. 2Cor 3:17.
Rev 3:1 Jesus introduced himself to the church of Sardis
as “He that has the seven spirits of God”
Rev 5:6 Jesus appears as the Lamb of God with “seven eyes,
which are the seven spirits of God sent into all the earth”
That’s why Jesus could say, “Lo, I am with you always…” Matt 28:20
“Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I” Matt 18:20
“In that day you shall know that...I am in you” John 14:20
“Christ lives in me” Gal 2:20 “Christ in you the hope of glory!” Col 1:26
“That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith” Eph 3:16
“Know ye not your own selves that Jesus Christ is in you?” 2Cor 13:5
Because only Christ, “the only begotten Son of God” (244 times)
is also the Son of man, “born of a woman, under the law” Gal 4:4.
Have you heard that some believe the terms “Son of God” and “Son of man”
mean the same thing? They claim both refer to Christ’s humanity,
because, it is said, Christ became the Son in Bethlehem.
Before that, “Son of God” was just a title used to identify “the second person.”
But then in the fullness of time, He really became the Son of God.
What does the Bible say?
God sent His only begotten Son into the world. 1John 4:9
He brought the firstbegotten into the world. Heb 1:6
And Ellen White?
He was “the First-born of heaven” DA 51
First he was “the divine Son of God” (60 times)
and then he became the Son of man.
So, there are definitely 3 personalities: the Heavenly Trio
1. The one God the Father (1Cor 8:6) who is Spirit (John 4:24)
2. The divine Son of God, the Spirit of Christ, that element which is all divine
divested of the personality of humanity
3. The human Son of man, the one mediator between God and men (1Tim 2:5)
divested of the form of God
No need to be opposed to 3. It is a wonderful truth and the wisdom of God!
Grace and peace be unto you from God the Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ
the Son of the Father in truth and love. 2 John 3