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Related to tritheistic: Adoptionism, Sabellianism, Subordinationism


n. Christianity
The belief that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are three separate and distinct gods, heretical in orthodox Christianity.

tri′the·ist n.
tri′the·is′tic, tri′the·is′ti·cal adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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Nonetheless, it is not always clear that his social doctrine of the Trinity, which suggests that the unity of the Trinity cannot be "an ultimately indivisible one" (106), is actually able to avoid tritheism in the end; and there are more than a few statements with tritheistic overtones such as: "The persons [Christ-God-Spirit] who act together [for us] ...
The major difference between Schleiermacher and Rahner lies here: Whereas Schleiermacher understood the distinction and plurality of persons within God as the source of the problem of the doctrine, Rahner strongly emphasized the distinction of persons, so much so that at places his language appears, against his own intentions, as tritheistic. (14) Yet, at the same time, Rahner also rejected tritheism and tritheistic language in strong, explicit terms.
wanting in any testimonies of affection and respect that I could reasonably desire or expect from them." (10) But while he considered Sabellian ideas--the idea that it was impossible to separate the persons of God--and tritheistic views, which suggested that the persons of the Trinity were separate and distinct, eventually he admitted "I had lost the Trinity.