The Holy Spirit

Dear Brethren,

Few people in this confused world understand what God’s Spirit is all about.  Who is truly led by God?  Who is able to seek God’s will in every thought and action performed?  Who has given himself over to Jesus Christ and His way of life?  A Christian is one who is led by God’s Holy Spirit.  If we do not have the Spirit of Christ, we do not belong to Him (Romans 8:9, 14).  God’s eternal Spiritual Family is open to all those who live by His Spirit.

God’s Spirit is the one Spirit that the Father and Jesus Christ share with each other and with us.  The people of this world are deceived.  God’s Holy Spirit is not a dove, ghost, fire, or third person of a trinity.  God’s Spirit is His life, His attitude, His life’s force, His mind, His love, His all-presence, His all-knowing, His unlimited power, His personality, His manifold traits, His character – it is every characteristic of God like His gentleness, compassion, generosity, mercy… the list is endless.

1Corinthians 2:16  Who has known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct Him? But we have the mind of Christ.

The Bible tells us that man cannot naturally comprehend God or His ways.  We only know of the physical world through our five senses of touch, sight, hearing, etc., but how do we learn about the spiritual realm of which God says, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for them that love Him?  God has revealed them unto us by His Spirit: for the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.” (1Corinthians 2:9-10)  The Holy Spirit is not restricted nor constrained by the physical laws of nature and the universe.  “Spiritual” is much more real and enduring than the temporary physical existence of which we are a part (John 3:8; 11:26).

A physical man has life, vitality, breath and spirit (Job 32:8).  In the Greek of the New Testament we find these three terms:  Physical life is “psuche.”  We find Jesus using this word the same way that we do. “Whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.” (Matthew 16:25)  When Jesus died for us, it was His “psuche” life that He gave for us (John 10:15).  The second term is for physical vitality:  It is “zoe, zao.”  It means to be lively, animated, alive and living (Luke 1:75), and “zoe” is also used for eternal and everlasting life as well.  The third term, “breath,” takes on a great deal of significance in Scripture.  In the Greek it is “pneuma.”  God builds on the concept of “breath” to help us grasp the meaning of “spirit.”  The term, “pneuma,” the breath in man, is interchangeable with and corresponds to Spirit in reference to God.  It is only through the context of the verse that we are able to determine if a Scripture is speaking of breath or spirit.  For example, when we read, “God is pneuma,” we realize that He is more than mere breath, and we interpret the verse as, “God is Spirit” (John 4:24).  Notice the ease in which Paul alternated between the Spirit of God and our human spirit by using the exact same word – “pneuma”:

2Timothy 3:16   The Spirit [‘pneuma’] itself bears witness with our spirit [‘pneuma’], that we are the children of God.” (Romans 8:16)

The Scriptures themselves are God-breathed, “theo-pneustos,” that is, inspired by God’s Spirit.  Besides our human life that we received from our father and mother, we have been conceived with the Spiritual Life of God the Father and Jesus Christ. (Being born into the Kingdom of God with eternal Spiritual God Life will come at the resurrection for those who endure until the end (Matthew 24:13).

God’s Spirit is every divine attribute and means of God.  It is the very essence of who and what God is.  God’s Spirit is the motivating action of God at work.  “The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep.  And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” (Genesis 1:2)

In the same way that breath is necessary for human life, God’s Spirit in us is essential for our future eternal life.  When speaking of God’s Spirit, it is appropriate to add “hagios” [holy] – Holy Spirit.  Holy Spirit, “hagios pneuma,” represents the Life and Spirit of God.

1Corinthians 2:11, 14  What man knows the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? Even so the things of God knows no man except by the Spirit of God …the natural man is unable to receive the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

It is God’s Holy Spirit that transforms a Christian into the Life and realm of God, making him a partaker of God’s divine nature (2Peter 1:4).  Man begins the transition from his physical existence to growing in Spirit toward the perfection of Christ when he is baptized into and receives the first token of God’s Spirit at his baptism and the laying on of hands (Matthew 28:19).

Ephesians 1:13-14  …You were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise, which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of His glory.

Being begotten (fathered) by God makes us His children with His Spirit (1John 3:2).  This is the earnest and the promise of eternal life through Jesus Christ.

2Corinthians 1:21-22  He who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, is God; Who has also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.

Why do we need God’s Holy Spirit?   Because without it, we lack the strength and ability to follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ (Acts 1:8; Romans 8:7-17).

God’s Spirit in a Christian begins the conversion process, which culminates in our being born eventually into the eternal Family of God.  God’s Spirit is the gift of God unto eternal life (Romans 6:23).  It is God’s Will that we enter His Kingdom as His Spirit-born eternal Children.  God’s desire is to share His Spirit with us “for the promise [of His Spirit] is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.”  (Acts 2:39)

Today's Sermon:  "The Holy Spirit"