In Relationship (Part Six)
by Harley Voogd
Trinity Vs. Triangulation
“A real Christian is a person who can give his pet parrot to the town gossip.”
Do you have any relationships which are entirely based on gossip?
I remember a few years back starting a new job at a fairly large construction company. I was already a fully licensed electrician but the owners had me work along side some long-time employees so that I could learn the ropes as to how things ran at this particular company.
I was surprised at the amount of gossip and dissension I heard from these guys. They would talk bad about each other and talk even worse about the owners. When I was with employees A and B, they would bash employee C. When I was with B and C, they would bash A. This would go on day after day, the same conversations over and over again.
After a time I was given my own work truck, my own helper, and my own jobs — I no longer had to work with these guys. Five years later we hit a slow period and the owners put different crews together on the same jobs to keep everyone working. Once again I was working along side these gossipers. It was a shock to me to hear them still having the same conversations, still bashing each other behind their backs, still with the same complaints about the owners. After five years nothing had changed! Actually there was one noticeable change — all of them had more grey hair. I remember thinking, “These guys are stuck in kind of hell”.
Begotten from the Father came the Son, and a relationship exists between the two. That relationship is the third person of the trinity: the Holy Spirit. (See Jonathan Edward’s essay on the trinity.)
Within the trinity, all three members (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) are giving themselves to the other members. The Father does everything He does for the Son. The Son does everything He does for the Father. The Holy Spirit does everything He does for the Father and the son. This is a covenant relationship, the first covenant relationship. All true covenant relationships are based on the trinity.
But what would happen if the Father and the Son got together to attack the Holy Spirit? Or the Spirit and the Son to attack the Father? The God of the bible would be no more, and all that exists would be no more. God’s own relationship within Himself is essential for all life.
When I and another have a common enemy, even if he and I would not ordinarily form a relationship, we will form a relationship for the purposes of attacking our common enemy. This is called triangulation.
The best and most common example of triangulation I can give is the one of gossip above. Two people, whose relationship is based solely on the attack of a third person, joining forces for only as long as the third person is a threat. Once the third person is gone, the relationship is over. This is anti-relationship.
The problem with gossip is that it is so compelling. What better way to boost yourself up than by bringing another down, especially when the other is not even able to defend themself at that.
That life only leads to misery. Better to give yourself in a covenant and live than die in the loneliness of triangulation.