Our Trinitarian Salvation
Did Jesus die to save some people whom God the Father hasn’t chosen, and whom the Holy Spirit will never cause to be born again? In other words, did Jesus die for everyone, even though not everyone is saved? If so, the Persons of the Trinity are working against each other, for the Son has died for some whom the Father has not elected and whom the Spirit will never regenerate.
Did Christ redeem and the Spirit regenerate some sinners who end up falling away and losing their salvation, thereby showing that the Father had never chosen them to be saved? Then, once again, the Persons of the Trinity are not working harmoniously together.
One of the beauties of the Reformed understanding of salvation is that, in line with the teachings of the Word of God, it represents all three Persons of the Holy Trinity working together in perfect harmony and cooperation in order to secure the salvation of a great multitude of sinners from every tribe and tongue and people and nation! In the Biblical-Reformed understanding of the plan of salvation, all (not merely some) whom the Father chooses, the Son redeems; and all (not merely some) whom the Son redeems, the Spirit regenerates and sanctifies.
Sometimes on the news we hear about government agencies that are suppose to be working together and in harmony, but which neglect to communicate properly with each other and thus end up working at cross-purposes, even to the point of undermining each other’s goals and making a mess of things. Thanks be to God that He is not like the agencies of human governments! We believers can rejoice that the Persons of the Godhead are not working at cross-purposes or undermining each other’s works in the matter of our eternal salvation (or in any other matter)! The Three Persons of the Holy Trinity work in perfect harmony with each other, and thus our eternal salvation is truly a trinitarian salvation!
In his commentary on the Westminster Confession of Faith, Robert Shaw writes the following:
“…our Confession, agreeably to Scripture, represents each of the divine persons as acting a distinct part in the glorious work of human redemption, and as entirely concurring in counsel and operation. The Father chose a definite number of mankind sinners to eternal life; the Son laid down his life for those who were chosen in him before the foundation of the world, and obtained for them eternal redemption; and the Holy Spirit applies the purchased redemption to them in due season. Here all is perfect harmony. The Son fulfils the will of the Father, and the Spirit’s work is in entire accordance with the purpose of the Father and the mediation of the Son. But according to the scheme of general redemption, or of universal atonement, this harmony is utterly destroyed. The Son sheds his blood for multitudes whom the Father never purposed to save, and the Spirit does not put forth the influence necessary to secure the application of salvation to all for whom Christ died!” (pp. 95-96, The Reformed Faith: An Exposition of The Westminster Confession of Faith; Scotland, UK: Christian Focus Publications, First Published 1845)
In the gospel God offers to sinners a salvation that is planned, purchased and secured by the Triune God, and which is infallibly guaranteed to all who (through sovereign grace) truly repent and believe in Christ. The gospel of Jesus Christ proclaims a Trinitarian salvation! Let us seek to do our part in making known to others this Trinitarian gospel, as is proper to our callings and station in life.