Reader beware! Experiencing the Trinity: The Grace of God for the People of God is not some flimsy volume filled with feel-good sayings you can fill your Twitter feed with. It’s a deep plumbing of the theological mystery that is the Trinity. It’s a subject often written about and yet so often misunderstood. Here in a compact form are practical thoughts on the three persons of the Trinity and the way those three persons impact us in the stuff of life.
These reflections, which he hopes, “will encourage those who find themselves battling fear,. anxiety, temptation, affliction and doubt” are written from a position of experience instead of supposed situations. Thorn writes from a place of deep desperation and anxiety. He knows what it’s like to be the “weakest man I knew”. That’s what makes this volume so impactful. He’s a pastor with frailties and, dare I say, fears.
After leaving the Preface, as it were, we leave Joe Thorn behind. We no longer see glimpses of a weak man whose lack of rest has led to a breakdown. We see a mighty God. We see the power of the Trinity over life. We see in the Trinity the comfort which is ours as believers and not only that but we see that comfort as an eternal joy which is not yet ours.
I appreciate that Thorn takes a view of sin and the human condition not often realized among the body of God today. He realizes and understands that man was made for God but that connection was severed, and since then it has gotten much worse. Man is depraved and broken but the living God has made available a way which we may come to and be cleansed from our sin. He has a taken the penalty of sin and has poured out that wrath on his Son Jesus at the cross.
While this is a book on the Godhead, Experiencing the Trinity, is much more than that. It’s about the gospel of Christ and the circumstances of a broken world. It’s about a Christ who suffered on our behalf. It’s about a living and active Word we have in the scriptures. We not only have a Christ who is sympathetic to our condition as fallen humans but was tempted in every way. We have a mediator who sits on the throne at the right hand of God who intercedes for His children daily. If you’re not picking that up from this volume, I’m afraid you’ve been reading a different book. Here Joe Thorn presents us nothing more than the gospel expounded, and we can all benefit from a refresher on this immense subject.