The Holy Spirit

The Holy Spirit is God in the work of creating, speaking, changing, living in, working in us. Although the Holy Spirit can do this without our knowledge, it is helpful and important for us to learn more about it.

The Holy Spirit is God

The Holy Spirit has the attributes of God, is equated with God, and does things that only God does. Like God, the Holy Spirit is sacred - so holy that it is as sinful to call the Holy Ghost as the Son of God (Hebr 10,29). Blasphemy, blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is a non-forgivable sin (Mt 12,32). This means that the mind is inherently sacred and sanctified, unlike the temple.

Like God, the Holy Spirit is eternal (Hebr 9,14). Like God, the Holy Spirit is present everywhere (Ps 139,7-9). Like God, the Holy Spirit is omniscient (1, Kor 2,10-11, Joh 14,26). The Holy Spirit creates (Hi 33,4, Ps 104,30) and creates miracles (Mt 12,28, Rom 15,18-19) and contributes to the work of God. Several passages call Father, Son and Holy Spirit equally divine. In a discussion of spiritual gifts Paul refers to the parallel constructions of Spirit, Lord and God (1, Kor 12,4-6). He ends his letter with a three-part prayer (2, Kor 13,14). Peter begins a letter with a different tripartite form (1, Petr 1,2). While these examples are not proof of the unity of the Trinity, they do support this idea.

The baptismal formula reinforces the sign of such a unity: "Baptize it in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (Mt 28, 19). The three have a name that indicates being a being. When the Holy Ghost does something, God does it. When the Holy Spirit speaks, God speaks. When Ananias lied to the Holy Spirit, he lied to God (Act 5, 3-4). Peter says that Ananias did not lie to a representative of God, but to God himself. People do not lie in an impersonal power.

In one passage, Paul says that Christians are the temple of God (1, Kor 3,16), in another, he says that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit (1, Kor 6,19). We are a temple to worship a divine being and not an impersonal power. When Paul writes that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit, he implies that the Holy Spirit is God.

So the Holy Spirit and God are the same: "But when they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Deliver me from Barnabas and Saul to the work to which I have called them" (Acts 13,2)., Here, the Holy Spirit uses personal pronouns just as God does. Similarly, the Holy Ghost says the Israelites tested and tried him and said, "I swore in my anger: They should not come to my rest" (Hebr 3,7-11). But the Holy Spirit is not just another name for God. The Holy Spirit is independent of the Father and Son, as shown in the Baptism of Jesus (Mt 3,16-17). The three are independent and still one. The Holy Spirit does the work of God in our lives. We are born by and from God (Joh 1, 12), which is the same as being born of the Holy Spirit (Joh 3,5). The Holy Spirit is the means by which God lives in us (Eph 2, 22, 1, Joh 3,24, 4,13). The Holy Spirit lives in us (Rom 8,11, 1, Kor 3,16) - and because the Spirit lives in us, we can also say that God lives in us.

The Holy Spirit is personal

  • The Bible describes the Holy Spirit with human characteristics:
  • The spirit lives (Rom 8,11, 1, Kor 3,16)
  • The Spirit speaks (Apg 8,29; 10,19; 11,12; 21,11; 1.Tim 4,1; Hebr 3,7 etc.)
  • The Spirit sometimes uses the personal pronoun "me" (Apg 10,20; 13,2)
  • The mind can be addressed, tempted, mourned, abused and blasphemed (Apg 5,3, 9, Eph 4,30, Hebr 10,29, Mt 12,31)
  • The mind guides, mediates, calls and assigns (Rom 8,14; 26; Apg 13,2; 20,28)

Roman 8,27 speaks of the mind's head. The mind makes decisions - a decision has pleased the Holy Spirit (Acts 15,28). The mind knows and works (1, Kor 2,11, 12,11). He is not an impersonal power. Jesus called the Holy Spirit Paraclete - translated as the Comforter, the Counselor, or the Defender.

"And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Comforter, that he may be with you for ever: the Spirit of Truth, which the world can not receive, for she does not see him and does not know him. You know him, because he stays with you and will be in you "(Joh 14,16-17).

The first counselor of the disciples was Jesus. As he teaches, the Holy Spirit testifies, condemns, directs and reveals the truth (Joh 14,26; 15,26; 16,8; 13-14). All of these are personal roles. John uses the male form of the Greek word parakletos because it was not necessary to use the neutral form. In Johannes16,14 even the male personal pronoun "he" is used after the neutral word spirit has been used. It would have been easier to change to a neutral personal pronoun, but John does not. The mind is addressed with "he". However, the grammar is relatively unimportant. However, it is important that the Holy Spirit have personal qualities. He is not an impersonal power, but an intelligent and divine helper who lives in us.

The spirit of the Old Testament

The Bible contains no part entitled "The Holy Spirit". We learn here and there a little bit of the Holy Spirit when the biblical texts mention him. The Old Testament gives us only a few insights. The Spirit was present in the creation of life (1, Moses 1,2, Hi 33,4, 34,14). The Spirit of God filled Bezalel with the ability to build the Tabernacle (2, Moses 31,3-5). He fulfilled Moses and also came across the 70 Elders (4, Moses 11,25). He filled Joshua with wisdom as leader, as did Samson with strength and the ability to fight (5, Moses 34,9, Ri 6,34, 14,6). The Spirit of God was given and taken back to Saul (1, Sam 10,6, 16,14). The Spirit gave David the plans for the temple (1, Chr 28,12). The Spirit inspired the prophets to speak (4, Moses 24,2, 2, Sam 23,2, 1, 12,18, 2, 15,1, 20,14, Hes 11,5, 7,12, 2, Petr 1,21).

Also in the New Testament, it was the Holy Spirit who made people like Elisabeth, Zacharias and Simeon speak (Lk 1,41, 67, 2,25-32). John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit since his birth (Lk 1,15). His most important work was to announce the arrival of Jesus Christ, who would baptize people not only with water, but with the Holy Spirit and with fire (Lk 3,16).

The Holy Spirit and Jesus

The Holy Spirit was very present and involved in the life of Jesus. The Spirit called forth his conception (Mt 1,20), laid upon him after his baptism (Mt 3,16), led him into the wilderness (Lk4,1), and enabled him to preach the good news (Lk 4,18). Jesus drove demons out with the help of the Holy Spirit (Mt 12,28). Through the Holy Spirit, he offered himself as a sacrifice for the sin of humanity (Hebr9,14) and by the same spirit he was raised from the dead (Rom 8,11).

Jesus taught that the Holy Spirit would speak in times of persecution by his disciples (Mt 10,19-20). He told them to baptize the followers of Jesus in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Mt 28,19). And further, that God gives all people the Holy Spirit if they ask Him (Lk 11,13). Some of the most important things that Jesus said about the Holy Spirit are found in John's Gospel. First, humans would have to be born of water and the Spirit (Joh 3,5). People need spiritual renewal and they do not come from themselves but are a gift from God. Even if the mind is not visible, it makes a difference in our lives (v. 8).

Jesus also taught: "Who thirsts, come to me and drink. He who believes in me, as the Scripture says, from whose womb rivers of living water will flow. But this he said of the Spirit that those who believed in him should receive; because the spirit was not there yet; because Jesus was not yet glorious "(Joh 7,37-39).

The Holy Spirit satisfies an inner thirst. It enables us to have the relationship with God for whom we are created by him. We receive the Spirit by coming to Jesus and the Holy Spirit fulfilling our lives.

John says "Because the spirit was not there yet; because Jesus was not yet glorified "(v. 39), The Spirit had already filled some men and women before Jesus' life, but he would soon come in a new powerful way - at Pentecost. The Spirit is now given to all who call the Name of the Lord (Act 2,38-39). Jesus promised his disciples that they would be given the Spirit of Truth who would live in them (Joh 14,16-18). This Spirit of Truth is the same as if Jesus Himself would come to His disciples (v. 18) because He is the Spirit of Christ and the Spirit of the Father - sent from Jesus and the Father (John 15,26). The Spirit enables Jesus to be accessible to everyone and to continue his work. Jesus promised that the Spirit would teach the disciples and remind them of everything Jesus had taught them (Joh 14,26). The Spirit taught them the things they could not understand before the resurrection of Jesus (Joh 16,12-13).

The Spirit speaks about Jesus (Joh 15,26, 16,24). He does not advertise for himself, but leads people to Jesus Christ and the Father. He does not speak of himself, but only as the Father would like (Joh 16,13). It is good that Jesus no longer lives among us because the Spirit can be active in millions of people (Joh 16,7). The Spirit evangelizes and shows their sin and guilt to the world, fulfilling their need for justice and jurisdiction (v. 8-10). The Holy Spirit points people to Jesus as their solution to guilt and its source of justice.

The spirit and the church

John the Baptist said that Jesus would baptize people with the Holy Spirit (Mk 1,8). This happened at Pentecost after his resurrection, when the Spirit gave new strength to the disciples (Act 2). This also includes speaking languages ​​that people of other nations understood (v. 6). Similar miracles occurred at other times as the church grew (Act 10,44-46; 19,1-6), but it is not said that These miracles happen to all people who have found new Christianity.

Paul says that all believers in the Holy Spirit are formed into one body, the church (1, Kor 12,13). Everyone who believes is given the Holy Spirit (Gal 3,14). Regardless of whether miracles happened or not, all believers are baptized in the Holy Spirit. It is not necessary to seek a particular miracle and hope to prove that you are baptized in the Holy Spirit.

The Bible does not require any believer to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. Instead, each believer is encouraged to be constantly filled with the Holy Spirit (Eph 5,18) so that one can respond to the direction of the Spirit. This relationship is ongoing and not a one-time event. Instead of looking for miracles, we should seek God and let him decide if and when miracles happen. Paul does not describe the power of God mostly through physical miracles that happen, but through the change that takes place in one's life - hope, love, patience, service, understanding, suffering, and courageous preaching (Rom 15,13, 2, Kor 12,9, Eph 3,7; 16-18; Kol1,11; 28-29; 2.Tim 1,7-8). These miracles, too, can be called physical miracles because God is changing people's lives. The book of Acts shows that the Spirit has supported the growth of the church. The Spirit empowered people to report and testify of Jesus (Act 1,8). He enabled the disciples to preach (Acts 4,8,31, 6,10). He gave directions to Philip and later removed him (Act 8,29, 39). The Spirit encouraged the church and appointed leaders (Act 9,31, 20,28). He spoke with Peter and the Church of Antioch (Acts 10,19, 11,12, 13,2). He worked in Agabus when he foresaw the famine and led Paul to flight (Act 11,28, 13,9-10). He led Paul and Barnabas on their ways (Act 13,4, 16,6-7) and enabled the Jerusalem Apostles' Assembly to reach a decision (Act 15,28). He sent Paul to Jerusalem and warned him (Act 20,22-23, 21,11). The church existed and grew through the work of the Holy Spirit in the faithful.

The spirit today

The Holy Spirit is also involved in the lives of today's believers:

  • He leads us to repentance and gives us new life (Joh 16,8; 3,5-6)
  • He lives in us, teaches and guides us (1, Kor 2,10-13, Joh 14,16-17,26, Rom 8,14)
  • He encounters us in the Bible, in prayer, and through other Christians He is the Spirit of Wisdom and helps us view things with courage, love, and self-control (Eph1,17; 2. Tim 1,7)
  • The Spirit cuts our hearts, sanctifies and changes us (Rom 2,29, Eph 1,14)
  • The Spirit creates in us love and the fruit of righteousness (Röm5,5, Eph 5,9, Gal 5,22-23)
  • The Spirit puts us in the church and helps us to understand that we are God's children (1, Kor 12,13, Rom 8,14-16)

We should worship God in spirit (Phil3,3, 2, Kor 3,6, Rom 7,6, 8,4-5). We try to please him (Gal 6,8). When we are guided by the Holy Spirit, He gives us life and peace (Rom 8,6). Through him we have access to the Father (Eph 2,18). He helps us in our weakness and acts for us (Rom 8,26-27).

The Holy Spirit also gives us spiritual gifts. He gives church leaders (Eph 4,11), people who perform the basic chores of church worship services (Rom 12,6-8) and those with special skills for special tasks (1, Kor 12,4-11). No one has any gift, and not every gift is given to anyone (v. 28-30). All gifts, whether spiritual or not, should be used for the work as a whole - the entire Church (1, Kor 12,7, 14,12). Every gift is important (1, Kor 12,22-26). To this day, we have received only the firstfruits of the Spirit, which, however, promises us much more for the future (Rom 8,23, 2, Kor 1,22, 5,5, Eph 1,13-14).

The Holy Spirit is God in our lives. Everything that God does happens through the Holy Spirit. Paul therefore encourages us to live with and through the Holy Spirit (Gal 5,25, Eph 4,30, 1, Thess 5,19). Let us therefore listen to what the Holy Ghost says. Because when he speaks, God speaks.

by Michael Morrison


pdfThe Holy Spirit