The Holy Spirit
"Howbeit when he , the Spirit of truth is come he will guide you into all truth, for he shall not speak of himself , but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak, and he will show you things to come." John 16:13
Who or what is the Holy Spirit in scripture? There are some who mistakenly think of the Holy Spirit as a mere force, kind of like the wind. While He is compared to the wind in scripture, He is a person as John 16:13 above clearly shows. Consider that there are seven personal pronouns in that verse. Any student of the English language would instantly know that personal pronouns are never applied to impersonal things. That may seem to be somewhat simplistic to us, however it is truth, and whether those who claim to have massive intellect agree or not, truth can be simple! As a person whose mind was intensely analytic, or, in other words, constantly unwilling to believe anything that I could not explain by analysis or breaking it down to my terms, I wanted truth to be fully explainable and the concept of childlike faith was out of the question. You can imagine my difficulty when it came to believing in God and the teachings of the Bible when it came to faith in someone I could neither see or explain. Praise God I was able to get past it and to be frank with everyone I was not highly intellectual to the extent that some people are. There are many, many intellectuals who would make me look like a mental midget.
The Holy Spirit is given credit for a lot of things in scripture, and some of those things can only be attributed to deity. He is given credit for Holiness, Omniscience, Omnipresence, and Eternity. He is shown as active in creation and draws sinful men to God. He is the teacher for the Christian and knows the mind of God. Careful examination of a few pertinent scriptures will clearly unravel the mystery of who he is and what he does. Let's discover together the things that mark him out as a person as well.
The Spirit in Scripture
The theological term for the study of the Holy Spirit is pneumatology but don't be intimidated by a word. Pneuma merely means spirit and comes from the Greek root pneu which simply denotes the dynamic movement of the air. The Holy Spirit in scripture is a person, and is given titles and/or attributes that can only belong to a divine being or God. He is the person in the Godhead that brings conviction of sin and points the way to the Savior. He is to be loved and worshiped!
The Holy Spirit as a person
A person has specific qualities including knowledge or intelligence, affection or feelings, a will,
and possibly the ability to speak. The scripture shows the Holy Spirit to have all of these.
Things only a person can do
The Spirit Suffers as a Person Suffers
The Holy Spirit as Deity
Names and Titles of The Holy Spirit
Attributes of the Holy Spirit
Isaiah 40:13-14 and I Corinthians 2:10-11 Omniscience Psalms 139:7-8 Omnipresence Hebrews 9:14 Eternity and John 14:26 Holiness - It is obvious that the very name "Holy Spirit" should let the reader know that He is holy.
NOTE: The Holy Spirit also has power to create as evidenced in Genesis 1:2 when "The Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters."
Further the Spirit of God had the ability to bring forth human life through a human vessel as evidenced in Matthew 1:18 "Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise; when as his mother was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost." Further in verse 20 continues with the narrative; "But while he thought on these things; behold the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost."
The final result of that is in verse 23. "Behold a virgin shall be with child and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel; which being interpreted is God with us." Here in this verse is the fulfillment of prophesy given by the prophet 760 years before Christ was born. Isaiah 7:14" Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." Now the above information will obviously require the reader to do some research in the Bible to make sure that these verses state what I am saying they do. Some of them are not outright declarations, and a little more study will clear that up. That is why the Bible tells us we
are to study to show ourselves approved unto God, workmen that don't need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. The word dividing here means a right understanding of what the scriptures say by checking them against other scriptures on the same subject, in their context and historical background. In scripture a group of people called the Bereans were commended for their diligent study. Acts 17:10-11
That particular study is called exegesis and is the only correct way to study the Bible when it comes to the right interpretation of what it says. Many false teachers, teachings and cults have sprung from not doing that but rather taking verses of scripture by themselves or out of context (the preceding and following verses) and developing doctrines that aren't scriptural. So much damage has been done through this, and many have been led away from Christ through this practice. It is our personal responsibility to study the scriptures for ourselves, and not be led away by those who choose to pervert the scripture to their own damnation. We will have nobody to blame but ourselves if we allow others to tell us what the scripture says. Certainly it is good to have teachers who love the Lord, but all men are fallible and we need to be sure that what they teach lines up with God's word as we understand it because, I am firmly convinced that God will not require of us what someone else understood him to say but what our own understanding of his word is since he has promised the Holy Spirit will teach those who are his children. There is no degree or pedigree mentioned in regard to this. Simple faith in God to do what he says will do the job. After all, who can teach us God's Word better than the Holy Spirit who, being God, understands the word of God perfectly?
C R Lord © 1979
The Spirit In The Life Of Jesus
The passivity of Jesus Christ in relation to the Holy Spirit
1. Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit
2. Jesus was anointed with the Holy Spirit
a. All four of the gospels record this
1) Jesus Christ's water baptism was his first identification with sinful man.
b. The sign of the Spirit's anointing wasn't the glossolalia as in the experience of some Christians in the early church but instead was the descent of the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove. (This was a manifestation not an actual dove) - "as a dove."
d. The person of Jesus Christ was anointed so far as the inauguration into the Messianic office was concerned, while the humanity of Christ was anointed with enablements and gifts necessary for the execution of that office.
e. The anointing of Jesus was unique in that he was the only man in Bible history to fill all three offices of ministry associated with anointing in the Old Testament. Luke 4:16 - 19
1) Prophet - Preach the gospel to the poor in spirit and proclaim the proper time to get right with God in view of God's vengeance.
2) Priest - Bind up the brokenhearted, comforting them and giving beauty and joy for for ashes and mourning, and offers himself without spot to God by pouring out his as both priest and sacrifice. Hebrews 9:14
3. Jesus was led by the Holy Spirit through testing
4. Jesus was enabled by the Holy Spirit to cast out demons that controlled men's lives.
5. Jesus speech was inspired by the Holy Spirit. John 6:63
It is important to note here that all the writers of scripture were inspired by the Holy Spirit and they also spoke by the Holy Spirit in the ministries. This is also true of all genuine ministers of God in or out of the pulpit who surrender to God to be used of him.
6. Jesus sacrificed himself at the cross through the Holy Spirit's assistance. Hebrews9:14
The activity of Jesus Christ in relation to the Holy Spirit
1.Jesus revealed the Holy Spirit to mankind just as he revealed the Father. John 14:16-18
a. The working of the Spirit in him was the ultimate revelation.
1) Jesus was supremely sane - he was not psychopathic nor did he act strange.
2) He had control of his mental faculties and actions at all times.
3) The Holy Spirit in him was always a moral power. He never propagated lies, deceit, schemes, evasions or any other dubious behavior.
2. All the fruit of the Spirit was abundantly evident in the life of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ, glorified, became the dispenser of the Holy Spirit to believers.
1. Jesus breathed the regenerating Holy Spirit on his disciples. John 20:22
a. There are three interpretations of John 20:22.
1) The Spirit simply means power -- "they received power."
2) The breathing was symbolic or prophetic of the Pentecostal outpouring and they received nothing.
3) They received an actual impartation of the Holy Spirit though not overflowing like like the impartation on the day of Pentecost.
2. John the Baptist prophesied that Christ would baptize with the Holy Spirit and with fire.
b) Some ministers believe there is one baptism with two elements.
c) Some ministers believe there are two separate baptisms.
d) There are four different interpretations of the baptism in fire. For some it is purification or santification of believers. Others believe it is tongues of fire as a sign.