Why does God refer to Himself in the plural form in Genesis chapter 1?

Scripture: Genesis 1:26, Deuteronomy 6:4, Matthew 3:16-17
If God is one, why does He refer to Himself in the plural form? What does the Bible mean it says that the Lord our God is one Lord?
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Co-Host: Laura in El Dorado, California. Hi Laura.

Caller: Hi! I have a question that is in Genesis 1, where God is making Creation and it's Genesis 1:26. And God said 'Let Us make man in Our Image, in Our Likeness. ' Could you explain that?

Pastor Doug: Yes well keep in mind, the Bible says in Deuteronomy 6 verse 4, 'Hear O Israel the Lord our God is One....' but the word One is Hebrew is not numerical quantity. The word One means Unity. Remember Jesus said a man will leave his father and his mother and cleave unto his wife and they become one flesh - well it's still two people.

God is made up of three Persons. There's God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. Later it says that God made male and female. He made man - male and female made He them. So it calls man the one thing and later it says they're two individuals. God is the Father, Son and Holy Spirit and so God is saying, 'Let Us make man in Our Image'. Pastor Dick was just holding up three fingers to tell me there are three in the Trinity I thought then I realized he's telling me there are three minutes left in the broadcast. I was going to say Dick I know there are three in the Trinity. He was telling me three minutes.

Anyway uh, you know you can also go to Genesis 11, and again, God says 'Man has become like Us....'

Caller: Right.

Pastor Doug: And so here you've got the Trinity, the Deity, God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. The word Trinity is not in the Bible it's the Godhead.

Caller: Ok.

Pastor Doug: And now proof for that is the baptism of Jesus. Jesus is in the water, God the Father speaks from Heaven - this is Matthew 3 - He says, 'This is my Beloved Son...' God the Spirit comes down like a dove. It tells us in John that there are three that bear witness, the Word - which is Christ, the Father and the Spirit. So you have all the elements and even in Revelation chapter 1 you read verses 4 through 6 you've got the Trinity there.

So it's like water. You know water can be ice, water can be steam and water can be liquid. It's one thing, but it's three different forms. Well that's actually not a good illustration because God is three separate people.

Caller: Well actually I like it. It helps me to understand.

Pastor Doug: Ok.

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