Bad Analogies for the Trinity

As leaders in youth ministry, there are times when we all probably have to address the Trinity with the kids.  It may come up while we’re teaching the lesson, or a child may ask a question about it.  This video is a great little funny cartoon put out by “Lutheran Satire” and features 2 Irish characters Donall and Conall talking with St. Patrick about the Trinity.  Even though it is a cute and funny little video, it teaches a great message, and as leaders, encourages us not to use these bad (heretical) analogies for the Trinity.  I think the video is appropriate for showing to kids – especially in the 3rd to 6th grade age range (it has some big words).  Here are the bad analogies featured in the cartoon:

Analogy for the Trinity Heresy of this Analogy
Like Water (3 forms: Liquid, Ice, Vapor) Modalism
Like the Sun (the star, the light and the heat) Arianism
Like 3 leaf clover (shamrock) Partialism
Like 1 man who is husband, father, employer at the same time Modalism
Like 3 layers of an apple (or hard-boiled egg) Partialism

Have you used any of these analogies?  I know I have, but I won’t anymore!

Here is the video (3 min 49 seconds):

 

So, the recommendation is that we should just stick to the definition of the Trinity – 1 God, revealed in 3 Persons – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  If it was “1 God in 3 Gods” or “1 Person in 3 Persons”, that would be a contradiction.  But the Trinity (1 God in 3 Persons) is a mystery, not a contradiction.

Blessings to you all

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