بِسْمِ اللَّـهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيم
When confronted about the fact that their doctrine of Triune gods is in fact addition of different parts which will always give a result of three, many of the Christians respond by saying that it is not “1 + 1 +1 =3” but rather “1 X 1 X 1 = 1”.
It is important to note that the Christian understands we are stating that he has claimed that God is divided into distinct parts, all of which have to be added in order to arrive at the whole. However, this Christian rebuttal is the height of sloppiness on their side. The Christian simply thought of some manner in which three number “1”’s could lead to a result of “1” and now presents it as “proof” of their doctrine. He did not think of what addition is in mathematics, nor what multiplication is in mathematics, nor what each of these operations means, nor why do they give the results they give.
As our response, we could mention that “1+ 1 – 1 = 1” and say that in this operation the number “1” also appears three times, so it should be a correct manner of describing the Trinity as per our opponent’s logic, with the obvious conclusion that one of the “persons” of the Trinity would be eliminated altogether. We could also say that “1 X 1 X 1 X 1 X 1 = 1”, so it is logically correct to imagine “God” in 5 persons. Or we could multiply 1 infinitely many times by itself and still get the number 1, so that would mean that the “God” who is supposed to be one can be infinitely many persons as per their logic. So the Christian logic in this case is not unique to “three persons in one Trinity”, but it can be easily expanded to include other operations other than multiplication, as well as use the number “1” as many times as one wishes and still attain the same result.
In any case, what our opponents fail to grasp is that multiplication is not even relevant in this case whatsoever, as multiplication is taking the multiplicand and scaling it by a factor determined by the multiplier. A subtle issue arises here which may not be noticed by many people: Even in this case, it is obviously known that both the multiplicand and the multiplier are indeed different entities, which combine to give some result. It just so happens that in the case of multiplication by one (the identity element), this second element gives a result which is the same as the multiplicand (the first element). But it does not change the fact that the multiplicand and the multiplier are separate and distinct elements, and that they are never treated as the same element when carrying out the multiplication- otherwise there is no operation to be carried out in the first place. This intrinsic fact inherent in all basic mathematical operations has to be kept in mind by al those who bring up this issue, so that they may realize that their example is invalid and has no merit.
So it is extremely obvious that when the Christian talks about three persons as one entity, then they are talking about composition and combination of parts to form a whole and they enter the realm of adding different parts so as to arrive at the whole. This is why it would be inappropriate for a Christian to say that “God” can exist without “The Father”, “The Son”, or “The Holy Ghost” all having existence as “persons” in the Trinity.
Now, if the Christian contends that these three are one in nature and essence (and that hence they are not parts at all), we respond by saying that the very fact that they can differentiate between these three persons and tell them apart means they are not one in nature and they are not one in essence. Otherwise the Christian could say that the Father is the same as the Son, or the Son is the same as the Father, or the Holy Ghost is the same as the Son, and so forth, a reasoning which is totally rejected in their religion.
To conclude, explaining Trinity by presenting the analogy of multiplying the number “1” by itself is utterly flawed and meaningless, as it exposes their brittle understanding of the matter at hand, as well as their denial that “three persons” will always carry with it the meaning of composition of parts into a whole.