Go you therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Divine revelation makes known to us one living and true God, and prohibits all worship being paid to any being except Jehovah. But the phraseology employed obviously presents the one Jehovah under certain distinctions, involving the idea of a plurality in the Godhead. This distinction has been generally denominated the Trinity — Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. The doctrine has been controverted in all ages, and numerous are the theories which men have endeavoured to maintain on this deeply profound, and confessedly difficult subject.
I. It is obvious that a threefold distinction in Deity is not impossible. We have many symbols of this in nature: the sun — the light and heat thereof; man — body, soul, and spirit.
II. The Old Testament writings lead us to this conclusion (Genesis 2:22, 7; Numbers 6:24; Psalm 14:6, 7; Psalm 110:1; Psalm 136:1-3; 2 Samuel 23:3; Isaiah 6:8; Isaiah 42:1; Isaiah 48:16; Isaiah 59:19, 20).
III. The writings of the New Testament exhibit this triune distinction (Matthew 3:16, 17; John 14:16; John 15:26; Acts 1:4, 5; Acts 5:30-35; Acts 10:38; Acts 20:27, 28; Romans 5:5, 6).
IV. The Divine works are ascribed to each of the triune persons.
4. Raising the dead.
V. That the essential titles and attributes are given to Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
1. With what reverence and profound veneration we should study the nature and character of God. How awfully sublime is the theme — how utterly incompetent we must be to find it out to perfection- how essentially requisite holy fear and humility of mind in its investigation.
2. We should labour to ascertain the connection between the Divine Persons in the Godhead in the exercise of devotion and worship. We are to come to God through the Son and by the Holy Spirit. We are thus, also, to praise God, and to pray to Him. The Father is chiefly the object of worship, Christ is the way, and by the Spirit we worship Him in spirit and in truth. God our Father — God our Redeemer — God our Comforter and Guide.
3. Divine honours are to be equally given to Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Let us labour to attain and enjoy love of the Father, the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the fellowship and communion of the Holy Spirit.
(J. Burns, LL. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: