An Interlocutor once wrote:
'Saint Clement of Rome and his Letter to the
Corinthians [c. 80-96 AD]: “The Apostles received
the Gospel for us from the Lord Jesus Christ; and
Jesus Christ was sent from God…they went forth in
the complete assurance of the Holy Spirit…Do we not
have one God, one Christ, and one Holy Spirit poured
out upon us?...For as God lives, and as the Lord Jesus
Christ lives, and the Holy Spirit…”. Clearly, in
the mind of Clement there is a firm conviction of the
distinction of Persons, and yet the interrelatedness
of each of these 3 Persons'
One thing that is "clear" from reading this electronic
submission is that the person who wrote this piece
allows his/her biases to shine forth distinctly. The
comments from Clement of Rome do not demonstrate his
belief in a triune or tripersonal God. Granted, he may
refer to God, Christ and the Holy Spirit. But mere
mention of these ascriptive designata does not prove
that Clement is a trinitarian qua trinitarian.
Moreover, notice that he speaks of "God," Christ and
the Holy Spirit. He does not use language such as God
the Son or God the Holy Spirit. For Clement of Rome,
the Father is the one true God (i.e. the maximally
JND Kelly analyzes a number of early church writers to
ascertain their perspectives on the divine triad in
his magisterial _Early Christian Doctrines_.
Concerning Clement of Rome, Kelly notes that "little
can be gleaned from the first" of the Apostolic
Fathers (page 90). Then, after he alludes to a few
passages found in Clement's work, he writes: "The Holy
Spirit Clement regarded as inspiring God's prophets in
all ages, as much the Old Testament writers as
himself. But of the problem of the relation of the
Three to each other he seems to have been oblivious"
(page 91). Hence, according to this authority, Clement
is not concerned with how the Three Persons relate one
to another. Little pertaining to the Trinity can be
gleaned from his work.
While Edmund Fortman thinks the divinity of Christ and
the Holy Spirit are "implied" in Clemens Romanus and
that there is a "clear trace of trinitarian belief" in
1 Clement, he concludes nonetheless:
"There is, however, no stress on the three. The stress
is on Christ, and only rarely are the three mentioned
together. There is obviously no doctrine of the
Trinity, no explicit affirmation of the divinity of
the Son and Holy Spirit but only an echo of the data
of Scripture" (_The Triune God_, page 38).
Notice that neither Christ nor the Holy Spirit are
called QEOS by Clement. Rather, the relationship
between God and His Son is delineated thus:
1 Clement 42:1:
"The Apostles received the Gospel for us from the Lord
Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ was sent forth from God."
1 Clement 42:2:
"So then Christ is from God, and the Apostles are from
Christ. Both therefore came of the will of God in the