The Holy Spirit

Of the three person’s of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit is unquestionably the least understood and with regards to teaching and study, the most avoided. In one sense, that is understandable. The titles we have for the other two: Father and Son are much easier to visualize than the Holy Spirit (literally Holy Breath). Beyond that, differences in an understanding of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is arguably the most polarizing issue in many Christian circles over the past century.

In spite of all this, it is essential that we have a sound doctrine of the Holy Spirit because He is fully God and distinct from both the Father and the Son. (Matthew 28:19, 1 Corinthians 12:4-6; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Ephesians 4:4-6; 1 Peter 1:2; Jude 20-21) Like both the Father and the Son, He was present and active in Creation (Genesis 1:2) and He has all the Divine attributes such as Omnipresence (Psalms 139:7-8) and Omniscience (1 Corinthians 2:10-11). Often, our view of the Holy Spirit is as some Star Wars type “Force” but we have to keep in mind that He is both real and personal. He encourages (John 14:16) teaches (John 14:26), bears witness (John 15:26, Romans 8:16), prays (Romans 8:26-27), and guides (Acts 16:6-7, Romans 8:14, Galatians 5:18) Things can seem “good” to Him (Acts 15:28) He can be grieved (Ephesians 5:30) and He makes decisions as to what gifts to give to whom (1 Corinthians 12:11). All of these are intensely personal attributes or actions, not the product of some mystical force.

The Work of the Holy Spirit

Inspires the Word of God (Acts 1:16, 4:25, 28:25, 1 Peter 1:11, 2 Peter 1:21)

Empowers the gospel message (Acts 1:8, 4:8, 4:31, 6:10, 1 Thessalonians 1:5, 1 Peter 1:12)

Regenerates the sinner (John 3:3-7, 6:63, Ephesians 1:13-14, 2:4-6)

Sanctifies us (Romans 8:4, 8:13, 2 Thessalonians 2:13, 1 Peter 1:2)

Guides/leads/instructs/teaches us (Matt 4:1, John 1:33, Acts 8:29, 10:19-20, 13:2, 15:28, 16:6-7, 20:22-23, Rom 12:13, Gal 5:18)

Produces fruit in us (Galatians 5:22-23)

Gives gifts to us (1 Corinthians 12:1-11)

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