171. The trinity which the present Christian church has embraced and brought into its faith, is that God the Father begat a Son from eternity, and that the Holy Spirit then went forth from both, and that each one of Himself is a God. Human minds can conceive of this trinity only as a triarchy, like the government of three kings in one kingdom, or of three generals over one army, or of three masters in one household, all possessing an equal power. From this what but destruction could ensue? Or if one wishes to figure or shadow forth this triarchy before his mind's sight, and at the same time the unity of its members, he can present it to contemplation only as a man with three heads on one body, or as three bodies under one head. In such a monstrous image must the trinity appear to those who believe that there are three Divine persons each by Himself God, and who join these into one God, but deny that God, because He is one, is therefore one person. That a Son of God begotten from eternity descended and assumed a Human may be compared to the fables of the ancients, that human souls created at the beginning of the world enter into bodies and become men; also to the absurd notion that the soul of one person passes into another, as many in the Jewish church believed; for example, that the soul of Elijah would pass into the body of John the Baptist, and that David would return into his own or into some other man's body, and rule over Israel and Judah, because it is said in Ezekiel:
I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even My servant David; and he shall be their shepherd and I Jehovah will be to them as God, and David a prince among them (34:23, 24);
besides other passages; not knowing that the Lord is there meant by "David."