As an ex-JW and a new Christian I had one major problem in believing that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit could make up one God, or that one God could manifest Himself at different times, and simultaneously, in three different forms. That was my inability to fathom the existence of anything beyond our physical world.
But then I found out something quite interesting. I discovered that scientists now firmly believe that dimensions beyond our four physical dimensions of space and time do indeed exist. For they now tell us that even though we can only directly observe four dimensions, there must somehow, somewhere, exist at least six other dimensions. For, they say, only when we allow for the existence of these extra dimensions, in which forces operate beyond our four dimensional laws of physics, are we able to account for all the properties and principles of "quantum mechanics."
Take, for instance, "string theory." At the very heart of string theory is the proposal that the cosmos experienced a dimensional split at 10 to the minus 43 seconds after the Big Bang began. At that instant, the ten-dimensional expanding universe split into two pieces: a six-dimensional piece that permanently ceased expanding and never produced matter, and a four dimensional piece that became our dimensions of length, width, height and time. Modern science maintains that only that four dimensional system continued to expand, eventually producing matter and stars. (see Stephen Hawking's A Brief History Of Time)
Now, since modern science believes in the existence of dimensions beyond the four we experience, it seemed to me that I should be able to believe that God exists both in and beyond the four space time dimensions in which we exist. For if as the Bible says God created our physical universe, He would not be bound by the laws of the physical universe which He had created any more than I would be bound by a cage I made to keep my parakeets in. While my birds would be locked inside the width, height and depth constraints of the cage I made, I would not be so constrained. If as the Bible says God created our physical universe, He would have to be omnipresent. For, if He was not, He would be bound by the width, height and depth constraints of the "cage" He had made. The same goes for other natural laws. If God made them, He must have existed before they were made, and so He would not then have been bound by them. And He would not now be bound by them either, unless He chose to climb inside the "cage" He made, close the door and throw away the key
I also learned that Einstein proved that time is only a dimension of our physical universe. And that time began when our physical universe began. Thus, if Christ existed "with God" (John1:1) before the creation of our physical universe He must have existed before time began, and His origin can truthfully be said to be "from the days of time indefinite." (Micah 5:2 NWT) Or for those who prefer plain English, "from everlasting," and "from the days of eternity." (KJV, NAS) So, though in one sense God's Son had a beginning, in another sense He did not. For if Jesus Christ has existed since before time began, when did He begin
It also helped me to remember that Jesus Christ is God's "Only Begotten Son." (John 3:16) To be "begotten," according to both the Biblical and dictionary definitions, means to be produced, not out of nothing, but from a parent's own body. For instance, the Bible tells us that Abraham "begat Isaac" "from his own body." (Gen.15:4; 25:19) And it is widely understood that Isaac pictured Jesus Christ.
Children who are begotten by a human parent, once they are full grown, are also absolutely equal to their parents in every way. In physical stature, in strength, in intelligence, etc. Granted, the child may not have the same position in business or government as his father but, in reality, that child is the parent's equal in every way. I, for instance, will always show my father the special honor a son shows to his father, but at the same time I will always be my father's equal. So, if Jesus Christ was begotten from his Father's own body, so to speak, before time began, he is both eternal (without a beginning in time), as Micah 5:2 says, and his Father's equal, as Philippians 2:6 tells us in most translations of the Bible
Another thing I kept in mind was that our fathers are three dimensional physical people. As such they occupy only a few cubic feet of space. As their sons, begotten from their bodies, we too are three dimensional people who occupy only a few cubic feet of space. For fathers who beget sons always do so "after their own kind," so to speak. Now the Bible tells us that God is not a three dimensional being occupying only a few cubic feet of space. The Bible indicates God is omnipresent. He exists everywhere at the same time. So, if Christ was begotten from God's own body, so to speak, and "after his kind," so to speak, He too would have God's own omnipresent nature.
When I was born the cord connecting my mother and I was cut. At that time I was no longer physically a part of either one of my parents. We soon became even more "disconnected" when I was placed in the hospital nursery fifty feet down the hall. Right now I might be in New York and both my parents might be thousands of miles away from me in California. But if God begat a Son after His own kind, so to speak, He and His Son would both be of the same substance, and thus both omnipresent. If this is so, it becomes very difficult to think of them as two separate Spirit Beings. And since they both have and send forth the same Holy Spirit, as Scripture says they do, from their mutual omnipresent position, it is not difficult to think of God as "three in one." In fact it then becomes more difficult to think of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as separate entities.
Though the Trinity doctrine is clearly a very imperfect, very human, attempt to explain the nature of a God whose nature is clearly far beyond our ability to ever fully comprehend, it is almost certainly a better attempt to do so than the overly simplistic JW "1+1+1 = 3" teaching on the relationship between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
I am now convinced that all the Scriptures pertaining to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and to their Deity, can only be understood and fully harmonized by someone who does not attempt to put the God of the Bible into some kind of four dimensional box.