This post is from China Partnership who exists to partner with the Chinese in planting gospel-centered churches in China to reach as many people as possible, and with U.S. churches to become active participants in missional efforts among the Chinese globally & locally. Dr. Um preached this sermon at the MTW West Coast Missions Conference 2015 held at Redeemer San Diego. Listen to the audio recording here.
Here is an excerpt from the sermon:
This is what the church has always taught about the doctrine of the Trinity. God is not a monad, but he is one God, three persons. He’s a triune God, he is not a monad. And that’s the beauty of what we find. That’s the only way, the only way we can have unity in diversity is to know that there is unity in diversity in the community of the Trinity. That’s the only way we’re going to be able to find the promise of this being rooted.
So if you were to look at it this way, if I were to use a spatial analogy. If you’re self-centered, it means that you are stationary and static. You want others to revolve around you. Listen, I’m not going to move for you, you come and you orbit around my life. You dance around my life. You revolve around my life. Everything centers around me. I’m going to stay stationary. That’s self-centeredness.
But what do we find in the diversity within the community of the Trinity? You have mutual affection, you have mutual adoration, you have mutual enjoyment. It is what one scholar has called an orbiting, or a dancing, or what some church historians have called perichoresis; there is a kind of orbiting around one another. It is a posture of a self-donating, one-way giving, posture of the Godhead of the Trinity. The Son delights in the fact that the Father receives praise. The Father delights in the fact that the Son receives praise. The Spirit delights in the fact that the Son accomplished what he did. The Son delights in the fact that he was able to send the Spirit, so that this beautiful unity and diversity within the community of the Trinity has landed within the hearts of individuals within the church and there was an explosion where now we’re able to look at others and appreciate them and to recognize that they’re equal, although they’re not equivalent, we’re not the same, but we’re equal. We appreciate that we live towards all those particularities.