The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.
[Editor's Comment: Today is Pentecost Sunday all across the Church world on this June 4, 2017. This benediction that I have chosen for today is commonly called the "Apostlic Benediction."
We. who are members of the International Pentecostal Holiness Church believe in the Trinity--Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the unity of the one Godhead. For theologians the trinity is heavy with mystery, but in the heart of the Church it is light and lively with music that thrills the soul of mankind.
None of us can doubt the mystery of the Trinity or the Virgin Birth of Jesus. It will always be there. However, it is the kind of mystery without which the Church finds that it is not the Church.
It is the Apostle Paul who gives us this benediction that clearly delineates the distinction of members of the Godhead--The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit. This teaching was given by the risen Jesus to His followers--the Church. We call it our marching orders: "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Amen" (Matt 28:18-20, NKJV).
It is a fact that for more than fifteen hundred years great masses of Christians in many communions have repeated a statement of their faith called the "Apostle's Creed." We have it in our IPHC Church Manual. That creed says, "I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth; and in Jesus Christ His only Son, our Lord; which (Who) was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried . . ."
The Westminister Catechism, used by Presbyterians and others in the Reformed tradition, after asking the question "How many persons are there in the Godhead?" answers, "There art three persons in the Godhead, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one God, the same in substance, equal in power and glory."
Today as we celebrate Pentecost Sunday, let us reaffirm our belief in the Holy Trinity.