A piece of mine reflecting upon the doctrine of the Trinity within the Old Testament has just been posted over on the Desiring God website:
Arising out of the crucible of christological and theological debates in the early centuries of the church, the Christian doctrine of the Trinity expresses the mystery of God that is the heart of all revelation. The philosophical cast and categories of these later disputes transposed the biblical material into very different idioms and discourses animated by rather different concerns. While they were concerned faithfully and fully to articulate the material truth of the biblical doctrine of the Trinity, the philosophical vantage points from which they did so were not, for the most part, native to — or at least typical of — the Scriptures themselves.
The result is a doctrine that speaks to deep realities that are often only penumbral to the revelation of Scripture itself, within which the sort of philosophical concerns regarding being that would exercise later theological minds emerge only sporadically and tangentially. Although the truth of the Trinity is materially present within Scripture, it requires a sort of discourse that proceeds according to different — and largely extra-scriptural — principles of investigation for that truth to come into crisp doctrinal focus.
The later philosophical discourse that played midwife to a Christian doctrine of the Trinity is by no means either illegitimate or inappropriate, as some more biblicist thinkers have suggested. Quite the opposite! It has served more fully and consistently to disclose the eternal, uncreated, living God who exists independent of all created things. This, it must be observed, continues a work of demythologization that distinguishes the Old Testament itself from the ancient Near Eastern literature contemporary with it, the gods of whose polytheistic pantheons were typically fickle, flawed, and limited sexual beings with origin stories, conceptually and metaphysically imprisoned within the changeable material realm of creation itself.
Read the whole piece here.