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Did You Know the Trinity Is in the First Three Verses of Genesis?

The early Christians breakdown the Trinity’s role in creation

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— 1 — In the beginning God created heaven, and earth.

— 2 — And the earth was void and empty, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God moved over the waters.

— 3 — And God said: Be light made. And light was made.

The Lord founded the earth by wisdom and established the heavens by understanding. — Proverbs 3:19
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. — Colossians 1:15–16

St. Bede (c. AD 735)

God the Father created all things through the Son.

St. Thomas Aquinas (c. AD 1274)

In creation the Person of the Father is indicated by God the Creator, the Person of the Son by the beginning, in which He created, and the Person of the Holy Ghost by the Spirit that moved over the waters. But in the formation, the Person of the Father is indicated by God that speaks, and the Person of the Son by the Word in which He speaks, and the Person of the Holy Spirit by the satisfaction with which God saw that what was made was good.

Gen 1:1

— 1 — In the beginning God created heaven, and earth.

John Chrysostom (c. AD 407)

Why does it proceed, first heaven then earth? The temple’s roof made before its pavement? God is not subject to nature’s demands nor to the rules of technique. God is the creator and master technician of nature, and art, and everything made or imagined.

Tertullian of Carthage (c. AD 220)

It is to the order of the works that the word beginning has reference, not to the origin of their substances. The Greek term for beginning, which is aρχh, admits the sense not only of priority of order, but of power as well; whence princes and magistrates are called aρχοντες . Therefore in this sense too, beginning may be taken for princely authority and power. It was, indeed, in His transcendent authority and power, that God made the heaven and the earth. [Against Hermogenes 19] With respect to the heaven, it informs us first of its creation — “In the beginning God made the heaven:” Genesis 1:1 it then goes on to introduce its arrangement; how that God both separated “the water which was below the firmament from that which was above the firmament,” Genesis 1:7 and called the firmament heaven, — the very thing He had created in the beginning.

Gen 1:2

— 2 — And the earth was void and empty, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God moved over the waters.

St. Ephrem The Syrian (c. AD 373)

It was appropriate to reveal here that the Spirit hovered in order for us to learn that the work of creation was held in common by the Spirit with the Father and the Son. The Father spoke. The Son created. And so it was also right that the Spirit offer its work, clearly shown through its hovering, in order to demonstrate its unity with the other persons. Thus we learn that all was brought to perfection and accomplished by the Trinity.


[The Holy Spirit] warmed the waters with a kind of vital warmth, even bringing them to a boil through intense heat in order to make them fertile. The action of a hen is similar. It sits on its eggs, making them fertile through the warmth of incubation. Here then, the Holy Spirit foreshadows the sacrament of holy baptism, prefiguring its arrival, so that the waters made fertile by the hovering of that same divine Spirit might give birth to the children of God.

St. Ambrose of Milan (c. AD 397)

The Spirit fittingly moved over the earth, destined to bear fruit because by the aid of the Spirit it held the seeds of new birth which were to germinate according to the words of the prophet: “Send forth thy Spirit and they shall be created and thou shalt renew the face of the earth.

St. Basil the Great (c. AD 379)

And the Spirit of God was borne upon the face of the waters. Does this spirit mean the diffusion of air? The sacred writer wishes to enumerate to you the elements of the world, to tell you that God created the heavens, the earth, water, and air and that the last was now diffused and in motion; or rather, that which is truer and confirmed by the authority of the ancients, by the Spirit of God, he means the Holy Spirit. It is, as has been remarked, the special name, the name above all others that Scripture delights to give to the Holy Spirit, and always by the spirit of God the Holy Spirit is meant, the Spirit which completes the divine and blessed Trinity. You will find it better therefore to take it in this sense. How then did the Spirit of God move upon the waters? The explanation that I am about to give you is not an original one, but that of a Syrian, who was as ignorant in the wisdom of this world as he was versed in the knowledge of the Truth. He said, then, that the Syriac word was more expressive, and that being more analogous to the Hebrew term it was a nearer approach to the scriptural sense. This is the meaning of the word; by was borne the Syrians, he says, understand: it cherished the nature of the waters as one sees a bird cover the eggs with her body and impart to them vital force from her own warmth. Such is, as nearly as possible, the meaning of these words — the Spirit was borne: let us understand, that is, prepared the nature of water to produce living beings: a sufficient proof for those who ask if the Holy Spirit took an active part in the creation of the world.

Gen 1:3

— 3 — And God said: Be light made. And light was made.

Tertullian of Carthage (c. AD 220)

“And God said, Let there be light, and there was light.” Genesis 1:3 Immediately there appears the Word, “that true light, which lights man on his coming into the world,” John 1:9 and through Him also came light upon the world. From that moment God willed creation to be effected in the Word, Christ being present and ministering unto Him: and so God created. The Word also Himself assume His own form and glorious garb, His own sound and vocal utterance, when God says, “Let there be light.” Genesis 1:3 This is the perfect nativity of the Word, when He proceeds forth from God.

St. Ambrose of Milan (c. AD 397)

God is the author of light, and the place and cause of darkness is the world. But the good Author uttered the word light so that he might reveal the world by infusing brightness therein and thus make its aspect beautiful. Suddenly then, the air became bright and darkness shrank in terror from the brilliance of the novel brightness.

St. Augustine of Hippo (c. AD 430)

As the words themselves make sufficiently clear, we are told that this light was made. The light born from God is one thing; the light that God made is another. The light born from God is the very Wisdom of God, but the light made by God is something mutable, whether corporeal or incorporeal.


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