Simply Trinity: The Unmanipulated Father, Son, and Spirit By Matthew Barrett

Initially purchased the Audible copy but realised I wanted MORE. I have been spiritually refreshed by this theological journey and thank Matthew Barrett. I am now rejoining a pathway that in every way has helped me appreciate the value of reading the works of our Church fathers Sola Scriptura Matthew Barrett Chapter 8 alone is worth the price of the book. Truly enjoyed reading this. Plan to read it often Matthew Barrett I'll never mindlessly recite the Nicene creed at church again after reading this book. The language of the creed was always confusing and there was never anyone around who could explain it well. Matthew Barrett Really enjoyed this book. It is a dense read, not for skimming. But it will deepen your understanding of the Trinity and appreciation for church history. Matthew Barrett


free read Simply Trinity: The Unmanipulated Father, Son, and Spirit

What if the Trinity we've been taught is not the Trinity of the Bible? In this groundbreaking book, Matthew Barrett reveals a shocking discovery: we have manipulatedthe Trinity, recreating the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in our own image. We have distorted the biblical, orthodox Trinity to justify our countless social agendas.

With clarity, creativity, and conviction Barrett mines the scriptures as well as the creeds and confessions of the faith to help you rediscover the beauty and simplicity of our Triune God. Barrett introduces you to The Dream Team, the best of the church fathers, who teach us how to interpret the Bible in a way that avoids past and present trinitarian heresies. You will also be surprised to learn that what you believe about the Trinity has untold consequences for salvation and the Christian life. To truly know God, you must meet the One who is simply Trinity. Simply Trinity: The Unmanipulated Father, Son, and Spirit

I think this book is the best explanation of the Trinity in an understandable way that is true to the orthodox creeds especially in regard to how to make the ONLY distinctions in the persons (unbegotten, begotten, spiration) while yet maintaining the simplicity of God. Best explanation I have read on simplicity and how to avoid Modalism and the persons to avoid Trithiesm. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. Matthew Barrett Matthew Barrett has a warm, engaging style and a gift for making abstruse topics accessible without dumbing things down. There were times, while reading Simply Trinity, that I was moved to awe, wonder, and worship of our Triune God. 

There may have been a few minor points of disagreement, and I wasn't overly fond of the first century fiction interwoven with the biblical text at the opening of several of the chapters (though he did a better job of staying within biblical parameters with it than some would). Overall, however, I found the book to be excellent. It is an able defense of the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity in contrast to all the clever conscriptions and redefinitions that have infiltrated Christendom in recent decades. If you want to make sure that your beliefs are in line with the Bible and the ancient Christian creeds and to guard against succumbing to harmful doctrinal fads, this book will help immensely.

These opinions are my own, and I was not compensated in any way either to read or review this book. Matthew Barrett Barrett is a strong communicator, and this book is a worthy read. The doctrine of the Trinity is worth dying for, and getting it right is no mere intellectual exercise. Knowing our one God in Three Persons is a sacred, saving privilege, and Barrett's book is illuminates this doctrine with strong clarity in a way that glorifies Him. Matthew Barrett THESIS
Modern teaching about the Trinity has drifted away from Orthodoxy.
The Trinity has been manipulated to promote politics, religious pluralism, environmentalism, gender identity, a patriarchal society, and one's sexuality.
Studying the Bible and the early Church Fathers and Nicene Creed can restore a proper view of the Trinity.

NICENE CREED (of Constantinople, 381 AD)
We believe in one God, the Father All Governing, creator of all heaven and earth, of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, begotten from the Father before all time,
Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten not created, of the same essence as the Father, through Whom all things came into being; Who for us men and because of our salvation came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and became human. He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered and wad buried and rose on the third day, according to the Scriptures; and ascended to heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father, and will come again with glory to judge the living and the dead. His kingdom shall have no end.
And [we believe] in the Holy Spirit, the Lord and Life giver, Who proceeds from the Father, Who is worshiped and glorified together with the Father and Son, Who spoke through the prophets;
and in one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. We confess one baptism for the remission of sins. We look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen.

If he was the same as God, then there were two gods.
But there is only one God.
Also, Jesus died on the cross.
God cannot die.
Therefore, Jesus is not God.
Instead, he was created, like Wisdom in Psalm 8 (personifying the Son) was brought forth or given birth.
He is a begotten Son by grace, not by nature.
He is the first and the best of God's creation. But He is not divine.

The Son is the only begotten from the Father (Jn 1:14).
He is begotten from the Father's essence (ousia).
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was WITH God, and the Word WAS God (Jn 1:1).
The Son is identical to the Father in divine nature. He is of the same essence (homoousios) as the Father.
And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature (Heb 1:3).

God's essence is without parts. He is indivisible.
Athanasius said, God, being without parts, is Father of the son without partition. He is Father of One Only Son. Let us preserve undivided the oneness of nature.
Hilary of Poitiers says it is because God has no body, bodies being divisible by parts, that God is simple essence: no parts, but an all embracing whole.

The three persons are not parts that compose God.
His divine essence is simply three persons in one God.
His attributes are not parts because He IS all of His attributes.
He doesn't HAVE love, He IS love.
He doesn't HAVE goodness, He IS all goodness.
God is identical to His perfections.

Each person is fully God because each person is indwelled by the other two persons.
The Father is indwelled by the Son and the Spirit.
The Son is indwelled by the Father and the Spirit.
The Spirit is indwelled by the Father and the Son.
So the three persons together are equal to any one, or two, of the persons.
Aquinas says, 'The whole fullness of divine nature is present in each of the persons.

The simplicity of God keeps us from straying from the truth of three persons in one essence.
Of simplicity, Gregory of Naziansus says, The aim is to safeguard the distinctness of the three hypostases within the single nature and quality of the Godhead.
Extreme oneness is Sabellianism (God is just one person who changes into three different forms). Extreme threeness is tritheism (three gods).

Each of the three persons is uncreated, infinite, eternal, and almighty.
Each of the persons is God, yet there is only one God, not three.
The three persons are identical in all things EXCEPT their eternal origins.

By their personal relations to one another, also referred to as their eternal relations of origins, or modes of susbsistence (existence).
(Paternity) The Father is UNBEGOTTEN.
(Filiation) The Son is BEGOTTEN (eternally generated by the Father).
(Spiration) The Spirit PROCEEDS from the Father and the Son.

There was never a time when the Son was not.
If there was a time when the Son was not, then there was a time when the Father was not a Father.
But the Bible never refers to the Father as being anything other than the Father.
So there was never a time when the Father was not a Father.
So there has never been a time when the Son was not.
Gregory of Nyssa says, He exists by generation indeed, but nevertheless He never begins to exist.
Athanasius says, When did the Father not see Himself in His own Image [the Son]? Never. (Heb 1:3)
Anselm wrote, The Father has His essence from nothing but Himself, but the Son has His essence from the Father, as well as having the same essence as the Father.
Aquinas said, The divine essence is the source by which the Father begets.
Augustine wrote, Just as for Him to be is to be God,thus also for Him to be is to be personal.

Augustine also wrote that in eternal generation the Father bestows being on the Son without any beginning in time, without any changeableness of nature.
Generation of the Son by the Father is not like human generation. How it is done is inexplicable.
Prior to His incarnation, eternal generation alone is what distinguishes the Son from the Father.

The first composed Nicene Creed of 325 AD ended with,
But, those who say, Once He was not, or He was not before His generation, or He came to be out of nothing, or who assert that He, the Son of God, is of a different hypostasis or ousia, or that He is a creature, or changeable, or mutable, the Catholic and Apostolic Church anathematizes them.

Augustine wrote, so does procession from them both [Father and Son] bestow being on the Holy Spirit without any beginning in time, without any changeableness in nature.

Sometimes the Scripture speaks of the Father, sometimes of the Son, and sometimes of the Spirit, but whenever it refers to any one Person it assumes that Person is consubstantial with all the others, co eternal, and co equal in divinity. The one God, the one Lord, is none other than Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In some cases, all three Persons make an appearance all at once.

(Gen 1:26) Then God said, 'Let US make man in OUR image.'

(Matt 3:16,17)
After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and He saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him, and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, 'This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.'

(Matt 28:19)
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

(Jn 1:29 34)
John the Baptist said, He [the Father] who sent me to baptize in water said to me, 'He [Jesus] upon whom you see the Spirit descending and remaining upon Him, this is the One who baptizes in the Holy Spirit.'

(John 14:26)
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.

(I Cor 8:6)
Yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him.
The apostle Paul does the unthinkable and includes another person's name (Jesus) in the Jewish Shema.
Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is One! (Deut 6:4)

(2 Cor 13:14)
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

(Eph 1:13,14)
In Him [Christ] also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation – having also believed, you were sealed in Him [Christ] with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God's own possession, to the praise of His glory.

(Eph 2:18)
For through Him [Christ] we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.

(Eph 2:22)
In whom [Christ] you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

(Eph 3:14 17)
I bow my knees before the Fatherthat He would grant youto be strengthened with power through His Spiritso that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.

(Eph 4:4 6)
There is one body and one Spirit,one Lord,one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all (Eph 4:4 6).

(2 Thess 2:12,14)
God has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. It was for this He called you through our gospel, that you may gain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus said no one shall snatch His sheep our of HIS hand (Jn 10:28), and then, His FATHER'S hand (Jn 10:29).
I and the Father are one (Jn 10:30; 17:22).
The Jews said, We stone you for blasphemy, and because You, being a man, make Yourself our to be God. (Jn 10:33)
Jesus answered them, Am I blaspheming, because I said, 'I am the Son of God?'
The Father is in Me, and I in the Father (Jn 10:38).
The Greek word perichoresis means mutual indwelling.
Jesus can only be in the Father if He is homoousios, from the same essence, as the Father.
And He can only be homoousios if He is begotten from the Father's ousia (essence).

Hilary of Poitiers said, The Father is in the Son, for the Son is from Him; the Son is in the Father, because the Father is His sole Origin; the Only begotten is in the Unbegotten because He is the Only begotten from the Unbegotten.

Jesus said, He who has seen Me has seen the Father. (Jn 14:9)

The Holy Spirit is called Lord.
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. (2 Cor 3:17,18)
The Spirit unveils our face to behold as in a mirror the glory of the Lord as we are being transformed into the same image.
The Spirit searches the depths of God, and reveals Him to us (1 Cor 2:10).
Only God could search the depths of God!
No one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God (1 Cor 2:11).
He helps us to have the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16).
The Spirit lives within our hearts and enables us to cry, Abba! Father! (Gal 4:6)

Jesus Existed Before All Ages.
Jesus claimed to have existed before Abraham (Jn 8:58)
Jesus had glory with the Father before the world was created (Jn 17:5).
The Messiah's coming forth is from of old, from ancient days (Micah 5:2).
God the Father is called the Ancient of Days in Daniel 7:9,13,22.

Jesus is Light from Light (Nicene Creed)
Jesus is the radiance of His glory (Heb 1:3).
As light naturally radiates its brightness, so too God radiates His Son.
He is the self diffusive presence of the One who is Himself unapproachable splendor. God's glory is God Himself in the perfect majesty and beauty of His being. The glory is resplendent. Because God Himself is light, He pours forth light. (John Webster, God Without Measure)

Jesus is True God from True God (Nicene Creed)
Jesus is the exact imprint of His nature (Heb 1:3). He is the image of the invisible God (Col 1:15).
For to which of the angels did He ever say, 'You are My Son, today I have begotten You'? And again, 'I will be a Father to Him and He shall be a Son to Me'? (Heb 1:5; Ps 2:7)

Jesus is the Wisdom of God
Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God (1 Cor 1:24).
Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom of God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption (1 Cor 1:30).
The Son is the wisdom of God personified in Proverbs 8.
The church fathers said, There was never a time when God was without His wisdom.
God's wisdom is of old and whose origin is the Lord (v.22), From everlasting He was established (v.23).
Both Wisdom and the Son of God
were born of God,
reflect God's glory,
are from the beginning,
are the agents of creation,
descended from heaven,
enlighten those in darkness.

Some argue that God created wisdom (and therefore at some point created the Son) because of the language used in Proverbs 8. Wisdom says, I was brought forth and set up (v.23 25).
But why would God need to create wisdom to help Him create the world, if He is already infinitely wise?
For among all the wise men of the nations and in all their kingdoms, there is none like You (Jer 10:7).

Jesus Allowed Himself to be Worshiped
after He healed a blind man (Jn 9:38),
after He calmed the storm (Mt 14:33),
after He rose from the dead (Mt 28:9,17).
Jesus taught, All will honor the Son even as they honor the Father (Jn 5:22)
Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessingTo Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever. (Rev 5:12,13)

The Holy Spirit does works that only God can do.
No one can say, 'Jesus is Lord,' except by the Holy Spirit (1 Cor 12:3).
Jesus said, Unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter the kingdom of God (Jn 3:5).
God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, 'Abba! Father! (Gal 4:6).
by the sanctifying work of the Spirit (1 Pet 1:2).
He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you (Rom 8:11).
No prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God (2 Pet 1:21).

What distinguishes the Holy Spirit from the Father and Son?
The Spirit eternally proceeds (spirates) from the Father and the Son.
Jesus told His disciples He would not leave them as orphans. (Jn 14:18).
Instead, I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you foreverBut the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you (Jn 14:16,26).
When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds [ekporeuetai] from the Father, He will bear witness about Me. (Jn 15:26).
It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you (Jn 16:7).

Anselm said whenever Scripture speaks of the Spirit of Christ, it is assumed that the Spirit proceeds from the Son as well as the Father (Rom 8:9; Phil 1:19; 1 Pet 1:11).
The Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son as from one source, not two, since the Father and Son are of the same essence.

The Spirit as Breath
The Son is generated from the Father, which is why He is called Son. The Spirit is not called Son because He is not generated but spirated, proceeding from the Father and the Son as Spirit.
Spiration is another way to refer to procession. The word Spirit means breath.
The Spirit is the one breathed out by the Father and the Son in eternity, which explains why the Spirit is the one sent from the Father and the Son.

The Father breathed out His Word through His Spirit.
All Scripture is breathed out by God (2 Tim 3:16).
Jesus breathed on His apostles and said to them, Receive the Holy Spirit (Jn 20:22).
Augustine said, Not that the physical breath that came from Christ's body and was physically felt was the substance of the Holy Spirit, but it was a convenient symbolic demonstration that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Son as well as the Father.

The Spirit is a Gift
He was the living water Jesus said comes as a result of believing in Christ.
Jesus said to the woman at Jacob's well, If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water. (Jn 4:10).
He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, 'From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.' But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those whom believed in Him were to receive (Jn 7:38,39).
The Spirit is given as a gift from God when we believe in Christ.
Peter said, Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38; 10:45).
Augustine said, The Holy Spirit is a kind of inexpressible communion or fellowship of Father and Son.

The Spirit is Love
The love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us (Rom 5:5).
The Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son as Love itself proceeds from the Lover and the Beloved. Augustine explains, There is no love where nothing is being loved. So then there are three, the lover, and what is being loved, and love. According to the Scriptures, this Holy Spirit is not just the Father's alone and the Son's alone. but the Spirit of them both, and thus suggests to us the common charity by which the Father and the Son love each other.

If the Spirit does not spirate from the Father and the Son's divine essence from all eternity, if He is not Breath, Gift, and Love, then the Father and the Son have no Spirit to give us, no Spirit to indwell us, no Spirit to sanctify us, and no Spirit to bring us into communion with the one who is simply Trinity.

(Latin) Opera Trinitatis as extra indivisa sunt = the outward works of the Trinity are indivisible.
Augustine said, All the works of one God are the works of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost because the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost are inseparably united in themselves.
This is not cooperation. That would assume there are three wills, or three gods who always get along with each other.
But since the three Persons are of the same essence, they have one will, not three wills.
Father, Son, and Spirit all perform one single act. Works are not divvied up among the Persons.
They perform one and the same action because they have the same divine nature.
They act as one because they are one.
Gregory of Naziansus said, No sooner do I conceive of the One than I am illumined by the Splendor of the Three; no sooner do I distinguish Them than I am carried back to the One.

The Son is Inseparable from the Father
Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of His own accord, but only what He sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise. For the Father loves the Son and shows Him all that He Himself is doingFor as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom He will. (Jn 5:19 21).

The Holy Spirit is CONJOINED WITH the Father and the Son
Basil of Caesarea says, the Holy Spirit is inseparable and wholly incapable of being parted from the Father and the Son. In every operation the Spirit is closely conjoined with, and inseparable from, the Father and the Son. Matthew Barrett Matthew Barrett is one of the leading evangelical proponents of Classical Theism. In this excellent book, he carefully and intelligently makes a case for the catholic (universal) Christian doctrine of the Blessed Trinity. He is also a lucid writer with solid communication skills. He makes the difficult concepts of the Christian Triune God accessible to the average adult reader. Christians from Eastern Orthodox and Catholic traditions will benefit from Dr. Barrett's work because he stands steadfastly in the Nicene credal tradition and defends it against modern objections. Matthew Barrett