Who were the three that Abraham the patriarch hosted in Genesis 18? Were they the Holy Trinity? Was Abraham’s worshipping them an indication of that? He talked to them at times in plural and at other times in singular, is that a proof for the Trinity?
We cannot say that these three were the Holy Trinity.
For there is no clear separation in the Trinity as it is the case here. The Son says “I and My Father are One. ” (John 10:30) and says “I am in the Father, and the Father in Me; He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:9-10) and it was also said about the Father “no one has ever seen God” (John 1:18).
The prostration of Abraham was the prostration of respect, not of worshipping. As Abraham bowed himself before the sons of Heth when he bought from them the Cave of Machpelah (Gen. 23:7).
If Abraham had known that he was before the Lord, he would not have offered them butter, milk, bread and meat and said “rest yourselves under the tree. And I will bring a morsel of bread that you may refresh your hearts. After that you may pass by. ” (Gen. 18:4-8).
The three were the Lord and with Him two angels.
The two angels, after the meeting, went on to Sodom (Gen. 18:16 & 22; Gen. 19:1) and Abraham remained standing before the Lord (Gen. 18:22) interceding for Sodom (Gen. 18:23).
When our father Abraham saw these three men, while he was sitting at the tent door, they surely were not in the same magnificence or reverence. The Lord no doubt was distinguished from the angels in reverence and glory, and perhaps the two angels were walking behind Him.
Therefore our father Abraham talked to the Lord in the singular considering Him the representative of this group.
He said to Him “My Lord, if I have now found favour in Your sight, do not pass on by Your servant. Please let a little water be brought, and wash your feet, and rest yourselves under the tree”. By all means, 0 Lord allow the two with You, so a little water be brought, and wash their feet.
For this reason, our father Abraham at times talked in the singular and at other times in the plural. An example of that, if you meet an officer and two soldiers with him, you will address the conversation to the officer about himself and include the two soldiers at the same time.
As we mentioned, the three were the Lord along with two angels. The two angels went to Sodom (Gen. 19:1) and the third remained with Abraham.
It is clear that the third was the Lord and the evidences are:
He told Abraham “I will certainly return to you according to the time of life, and behold, Sarah your wife shall have a son” (Gen. 18:10). Furthermore the same chapter clearly indicates that He was the Lord in many verses:
* And the Lord said to Abraham, “why did Sarah laugh” (Gen. 18:13).
* And the Lord said “shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing” (Gen. 18:17).
* And the Lord said “Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great” (Gen. 18:20).
Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the Lord. (Gen. 18:22).
* The saying of Abraham, “shall not the judge of all the earth do right?” no doubt indicates that he was talking to God as in the rest of his conversation interceding for Sodom.
* The way Abraham put his words “Indeed now, I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to the Lord”.
* And the way the Lord put His words “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous… I will spare all the place for their sakes” “I will not do it if I find thirty there” “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten”. It is clear those were the words of God who Has the authority to condemn and to forgive.
But the other two, were the angels that went to Sodom as it is clear from the verses (Gen. 18:16,22) & (Gen. 19:1) and their known account with Lot in (Gen. 19).
The fact that the three were separated is an indication that they were not the Holy Trinity.
Two went to Sodom and the third remained with Abraham to talk to him about giving Sarah an offspring and listen to his intercession for Sodom.
This separation fits more talking about God and the two angels but not about the Trinity.