Christians believe in the Blessed Trinity. Although there is only one God, God exists in three Divine Persons: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Don’t try to fathom it; it’s a mystery of faith; we will never understand it with our limited human intellect.
It is believed by some that each of the Divine Persons played a specific role in succeeding periods of human history. Here is an outline of this theory.
1. The Age of God the Father
This age began with creation and ended with the coming of Jesus. It spans the entire Old Testament.
After the sin of our first parents, the early humans spread across the face of the known world and endured many hardships including famines and the great flood. Because they had an instinctive knowledge of a Transcendent Power, they worshiped images, animals, and created imaginary gods and goddesses.
In time, God chose a particular group of nomadic tribesmen, the early Israelites, and revealed himself to Abraham. With this patriarch, God established a covenant. promising that He would be the God of the Israelites, and they would be His people.
Through Moses, God freed the Israelites from slavery in Egypt, and gave them His rules of conduct: the Ten Commandments. The strict format of the Commandments, “Thou shall not…”, reflects the stern attitude of a caring Father who was dealing with a primitive group of wayward, headstrong people.
Through the years, God sent prophets: Isaiah, Daniel, Zechariah, and finally, John the Baptist, to guide His people along the paths He wanted them to follow.
2. The Age of God the Son
This Age commenced with the arrival of Jesus Christ on earth. The Second Person of the Blessed Trinity became a man for two reasons.
(a) Jesus showed us what God is like in a way that our limited human intelligence could grasp. Left to our own devices, humans could never understand God. Jesus, through His earthly life, illustrated that God is loving, kind, powerful, anxious to heal illness, and to forgive sin.
(b) Jesus came to earth to atone for all the sins of humanity by His sufferings and death on the cross. Because He was a man, He was eligible to stand in our place and take the punishment due for our sins. Because He was God, His sacrifice was of infinite value.
Jesus gave the more advanced people of His day, the Beatitudes (Mt 5:3-11). They did not cancel out the Ten Commandments, rather they accented positive virtues, and encouraged Christians to actively pursue the good, rather than just commanding them to avoid sin.
The Age of God the Son was relatively brief, only about thirty-three years. It ended with the coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost.
3. The Age of God the Holy Spirit
On Pentecost, the third Person of the Blessed Trinity, the Holy Spirit descended on the Apostles, giving them the wisdom and power to start the Church, which would continue to shepherd Christ’s followers through the ages until His return.
To date, it has been about 2,011 years since Christ’s birth and His Church is still in existence. Jesus promised His friends before He returned to Heaven: “And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Mt 28:20
Today, God is active on earth through the Holy Spirit, inspiring Christians to go about doing good, carrying out God’s will, and spreading the Gospel.
No one knows how long the Age of the Holy Spirit will last. Jesus promised to return at the end of the world. This event may occur through nuclear war, climate change, a lethal pandemic or some other climactic happening.
However, we do know that God, who has lovingly guided His followers from the time of creation until the present, can be trusted to bring all people of goodwill to the safety of His eternal home in Heaven, where they will live with Him forever.