Who or What is the Holy Spirit

What the Scriptures tell us is that God dwells in us, and therefore intimate communion with him is possible.  We may also commune with him in reading his word and praying to him.  We should esteem it life’s greatest blessing and privilege to commune with god.  If the President of the United States should come into our home to commune with us, we would think we were highly favored, though we seldom realize that we are infinitely more favored to hold communion with God who is the creator and possessor and ruler of the whole universe.

The Holy Spirit is God, distinct from the Word.  Many people think the Spirit and the Word of God are identical.  The Spirit inspired the writings of the Word.  The Spirit is pictured as the soldier and the Word as his sword in the expression “sword of the Spirit” (Eph. 6:17).  People received the word before they were baptized, but received the Spirit after they were baptized (Acts 2:38, 41).

Our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit.  Paul says the Holy Spirit uses our bodies as temples in which to dwell.

1 Cor. 6:19

19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?

When we are baptized, we receive the “gift of the Holy Spirit.”

Acts 2:38

38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

The “gift of the Holy Spirit” does not mean the Holy Spirit is the giver of something, but rather the Holy Spirit is the gift we receive.  The expression “gift of eternal life” does not mean that eternal life is the giver, but rather that eternal life is the gift. Peter said God gives the Spirit to those who obey him.

Acts 5:32

32 “And we are witnesses of these things; and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey Him.”

The obedience one must render to get the Holy Spirit is to believe the gospel, repent of sins, and be baptized in the name of Christ for the remission of sins.  When one does these things he will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, or he will receive the Holy Spirit as a gift.

God in the person of the Holy Spirit will come to dwell in that person, he will make that person’s body his temple,  the promise God made to dwell in his people is then fulfilled.

2 Cor. 6:16

16 Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I WILL DWELL IN THEM AND WALK AMONG THEM; AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE.

One final thing must be said.  The Spirit does not enable us to work miracles.  We know this to be true because we know that the Spirit dwelt in Philip, but did not enable him to lay his hands on other and give them the power to work miracles.

Acts 8:5

5 Philip went down to the city of Samaria and began proclaiming Christ to them.

Acts 8:14-17

14 Now when the apostles in Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent them Peter and John,

15 who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit.

16 For He had not yet fallen upon any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.

17 Then they began laying their hands on them, and they were receiving the Holy Spirit.

The apostles had to go to Samaria and lay hands on Philip’s converts to give them miracle working power.  The Spirit would do some things through the apostles he would not do through Philip, though the Spirit dwelt in Philip as much as he dwelt in the apostles.  So the Spirit dwells in us, but he will not do some things through us he did through early evangelists and apostles.

Others demand sensible evidence of the indwelling of the Spirit, such as felling, or seeing.  They say if we cannot fell the Spirit in us, they do not believe he is in us.  But they would have a hard time proving there is a spirit, the offspring of God in their body.  And they would also find it difficult to prove they have a sound mind, since they have neither seen nor felt it.  Spiritual phenomena are not discerned by physical senses.

Comments are closed.