What About the Holy Spirit

Please explain the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit is the third member of the Holy Trinity, and as such, he is a Divine Person.

Some people don’t think of the Holy Spirit as a person. They think of him as an impersonal power or force, like electricity. This is reflected in how they speak of him. They don’t use personal pronouns when speaking of him, which is to say, they don’t say, “he” or “him.” They say “it,” when referring to the Spirit.

But it is quite clear from Scripture that the Holy Spirit is a person. Personal acts are frequently attributed to him. He knows (1 Cor. 2:10-11); he wills (1 Cor. 12:11); he speaks (Jn. 16:13; Acts 10:19; cf. 11:12; 21:11; 1 Tim. 4:1; Rev. 14:13); he can be lied to (Acts 5:3); he can be tested (Acts 5:9); he can be grieved (Eph. 4:30); fellowship can be had with him (2 Cor. 13:14; Phil. 2:1); he teaches (Jn. 14:26); he intercedes (Rom. 8:26-27); he can be pleased (Acts 15:28); he makes men overseers of the church (Acts 20:28).

It is for this reason that we have numerous instances of personal pronouns being used of the Holy Spirit. When the leaders of the church at Antioch were worshiping the Lord and fasting, “the Holy Spirit said [speaking is a personal act], ‘Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them’ ” (Acts 13:2). Jesus said, “When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me” (Jn. 15:26; cf. Jn. 16:13-14).

The close association of the Holy Spirit with the Father and the Son in both the baptismal formal (Matt. 28:19) and in what is called the apostolic benediction (2 Cor. 13:14), leads us to the same conclusion—that the Holy Spirit is a person.

Baptism “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”—this formula—presents the Holy Spirit as an object of our faith (hence, also an object of our worship). In baptism we acknowledge belief in, and commitment to, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It would be more than just a little strange if we should acknowledge the Father as a distinct person and the Son as a distinct person, but not the Holy Spirit. Why would the Holy Spirit be included in this formula if he were not a person like the Father and the Son?

The Holy Spirit, then, is a person, and ought to be spoken of as a person. And even more than this, he ought to be spoken of as a Divine person.

The Scriptural evidence for the Deity of the Holy Spirit is very clear and compelling.

Again we have to consider his close association with the Father and the Son in the baptismal formula and the apostolic benediction. This benediction is found in 2 Cor. 13:14, “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. It’s an invocation of blessing from the three persons of the Holy Trinity.

Also, we should consider that lying to the Holy Spirit is said to be lying to God (Acts 5:3-4); that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is an unpardonable sin (Matt. 12:31-32); that believers are said to be a “dwelling place for God” because of the Holy Spirit within us (Eph. 2:22; cf. 1 Cor. 6:19); that divine attributes are ascribed to the Holy Spirit: he is said to be eternal (Heb. 9:14), omniscient (1 Cor. 2:10-11), and omnipresent (Ps. 139:7). We also find that he participated in the divine work of creation (Gen. 1:2).

The Holy Spirit is that member of the Godhead who takes the finished work of Jesus Christ and applies it to the elect. He convicts of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment to come (Jn. 16:8-10). He presses home the claims of the gospel. He is the one who gives the new birth (Jn. 3:3-8). He is the one who brings people to faith and repentance. And he is the one who sanctifies believers and conforms them to the image of Jesus Christ (1 Pet. 1:2).


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