Followers

Showing posts with label Holy Spirit. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Holy Spirit. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

The Holy Spirit

 


Many people misunderstand the identity of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is commonly thought of as an impersonal force. Some people think of it as a healing or protective power to which God gives a believer access. But what does the Bible say about the Holy Spirit? Scripture tells us that the Holy Spirit is not just an impersonal power or a force, but a person – the third person of the Trinity, in fact. The Holy Spirit is God Himself.

The Holy Spirit appears synonymously with God in many places in the Bible, both in the New and Old Testaments. In Acts 5:3-4, Peter asks Ananias why he has lied to the Holy Spirit, and it is clear that lying to the Holy Spirit is the same as lying to God. He shares the characteristics of God, such as omniscience and omnipresence, as seen in Psalm 139:7-8, which says "Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!" Again in 1 Corinthians 2:10-11, God's attribute of omniscience is also present in the Holy Spirit: "these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. For who knows a person's thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God."

The Holy Spirit is a divine person, and He is intimately involved in our salvation, along with the Father and the Son, as shown in Romans 8:11 which says, "If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you." The Holy Spirit has thoughts and knowledge (1 Corinthians 2:10), and He can feel sorrow and grief (Ephesians 4:30). The Spirit can make intercession for believers (Romans 8:26-27). He also has a will and makes decisions (1 Corinthians 12:7-11).

In summary, the Holy Spirit is God. He is the third person of the Trinity. Only as that divine person can the Holy Spirit be to believers a comforter and a counselor, according to the promise of Jesus (John 14:16,26; 15:26).

The Bible notes several roles the Holy Spirit plays in the lives of people today. First, the Holy Spirit provides conviction of sin to all people. John 16:8 notes, "And when he [the Holy Spirit] comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment."

For believers in Christ, the Holy Spirit works in additional ways. One of these roles is to serve as a helper or comforter. John 14:16-17 records Jesus saying, "And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him." The Greek word translated as "Helper" or "Comforter" (KJV) refers to one who is called alongside another, providing the idea of a guide or encourager during times of need. This takes place as God's Spirit indwells the believer from the point of salvation (Romans 8:9; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

An additional role of the Holy Spirit is to guide the believer into truth. John 16:13 reads, "When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth." Rather than depending on our human reasoning, we have a supernatural guide in the form of God's indwelling Holy Spirit.

Further, the Holy Spirit helps believers to glorify
Christ. John 16:14 reveals, "He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you." We have a desire to worship Christ because God's Spirit lives within us as believers.

For believers, the Holy Spirit also gives special gifts. First Corinthians 12, Romans 12:3-8, and 1 Peter 4:10-11 reveal the names of many gifts God's Spirit provides to believers. Each believer has at least one (1 Corinthians 12:7), and each person is specifically gifted for the acts of service God has prepared for him or her (Ephesians 2:10). The gifts are given to allow the church to work together to meet needs, make disciples, and glorify God.

God's Spirit also enables believers to produce the fruit of the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-23 shares, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law." Without God's Spirit, people are unable to produce fruitful lives that reflect the plan of God.

The Holy Spirit indwells us as believers. In addition to the many roles He plays in our lives, He seals us as belonging to God (see Ephesians 1:13-14). The Holy Spirit is the person of God who lives with us in our time on earth and teaches us to truly know and follow God.

In biblical times, a seal was a guarantee. Ephesians 1:13-14 shares regarding the Holy Spirit, "In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory." According to this passage, the seal of the Holy Spirit takes place at the point of salvation. It is a promise or guarantee of the Christian's future, eternal inheritance with Yeshua (Jesus) Christ.

The Greek word translated as "seal" is shragizo that means "to set a seal upon, mark with a seal." A seal could be used to guarantee a document or letter (Esther 3:12), indicate ownership (Song of Songs 8:6), or protect against tampering (Matthew 27:66; Revelation 5:1). The Holy Spirit is our seal in every sense of this word.

First, the Holy Spirit in the believer's life helps to guarantee he or she is a child of God. Romans 8:16 shares, "The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God."

Second, the seal of the Holy Spirit serves as a mark that we truly belong to Christ. Romans 8:9-10 teaches, "You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness." First Corinthians 6:19-20 also notes, "Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body."

Third, the seal of the Holy Spirit helps protect against tampering or attack. Romans 8:13 declares, "For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live." In a very real sense, God's Spirit protects us and guarantees our eternity with
In biblical times, a seal was a guarantee. Ephesians 1:13-14 shares regarding the Holy Spirit, "In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory." According to this passage, the seal of the Holy Spirit takes place at the point of salvation. It is a promise or guarantee of the Christian's future, eternal inheritance with Jesus Christ.

The Greek word translated as "seal" is shragizo that means "to set a seal upon, mark with a seal." A seal could be used to guarantee a document or letter (Esther 3:12), indicate ownership (Song of Songs 8:6), or protect against tampering (Matthew 27:66; Revelation 5:1). The Holy Spirit is our seal in every sense of this word.

First, the Holy Spirit in the believer's life helps to guarantee he or she is a child of God. Romans 8:16 shares, "The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God."

Second, the seal of the Holy Spirit serves as a mark that we truly belong to Christ. Romans 8:9-10 teaches, "You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness." First Corinthians 6:19-20 also notes, "Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body."

Third, the seal of the Holy Spirit helps protect against tampering or attack. Romans 8:13 declares, "For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live." In a very real sense, God's Spirit protects us and guarantees our eternity with
Christ.

At what point does the sealing of the Holy Spirit take place? It takes place when a person believes the gospel (Ephesians 1:13; John 7:37-39). At that point, God's seal offers the promise of eternal life (John 3:16) because of salvation based on God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9).

The seal of the Holy Spirit offers a wonderful glimpse of God's role in salvation. When we receive salvation in Christ, we are given a guarantee, exchange our ownership for His, and are protected against forces of evil. This seal should provide wonderful encouragement for the believer against the spiritual battles in this life (Ephesians 6:12) and anticipation for the life to come.
.

At what point does the sealing of the Holy Spirit take place? It takes place when a person believes the gospel (Ephesians 1:13; John 7:37-39). At that point, God's seal offers the promise of eternal life (John 3:16) because of salvation based on God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9).

The seal of the Holy Spirit offers a wonderful glimpse of God's role in salvation. When we receive salvation in Christ, we are given a guarantee, exchange our ownership for His, and are protected against forces of evil. This seal should provide wonderful encouragement for the believer against the spiritual battles in this life (Ephesians 6:12) and anticipation for the life to come.

Scripture that refers to the filling of the Holy Spirit is Ephesians 5:17-21:

Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to
Christ with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our King Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ.

In these verses being filled with the Spirit is contrasted with being filled or drunk with wine. The idea is one of being controlled by God's Spirit rather than by other forces. When we are filled by the Spirit, we see a resultant attitude of joy and thanksgiving. We also see a relational posture of humility toward God and of submission to one another.

So how can a person be filled with the Holy Spirit? To be clear, there is an important difference between the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and the filling of the Holy Spirit. All believers in Jesus Christ have God's Spirit living within them, or dwelling within them (John 14:16, Ephesians 1:13, 2 Corinthians 1:22, Ephesians 4:30); but not all believers live filled or controlled by the Spirit's power. Some Christians describe this distinction by saying believers have all of the Holy Spirit but the Holy Spirit may not have all of them. We are indwelt by the Holy Spirit at the time of our salvation but we are filled by Him when we submit to Him.

The filling of the Holy Spirit, then, can vary in the life of each believer. Negatively, a believer in Christ can "quench" or "grieve" the Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:19; Ephesians 4:30). Sinful actions can hinder the work of God's Spirit in his or her life. In contrast, when a believer in Christ lives in obedience to God's will and commands, he or she should expect to see God's Spirit living through them.

Some suggest that the filling of the Holy Spirit is an emotional experience that takes place at certain moments, but the concept of "filling" in Scripture is one of being controlled or influenced by the Holy Spirit. At times living a Spirit-filled life may include emotional or mountain-top experiences. But the idea of being filled by the Spirit is more about an ongoing sense of God's Spirit working in a person's life, not a one-time experience. As the believer lives out his or her faith in Christ, the Holy Spirit increasingly controls or fills his or her life; this leads to joy, thankfulness, and right relationships.