Holy Spirit, what is it, when and how given?
What makes this topic so important is that it gives another wrinkle to a longstanding misunderstanding or false rendering that relates to the Holy Spirit.
What exactly is the Holy Spirit? Is it another person/body in the Trinity concept, a power or both? When and how was this Holy Spirit given? And what is it for?
What exactly is the Holy Spirit?
Where to start to get to the answer to this question, is a “door” to open to understand the truth behind the actual nature of this “entity”. There is no better place to start but to open that “door”, the Holy Scriptures of today( like the Bereans on what was available to them on that day, Acts 17:11), to get some inclination of what precisely this is.
Remember a basic principle that the “spirit essence” has to come directly or “flow” from a spirit/composed person. It cannot originate from any other. As to whether there was a separate “person” with the “giver” of this “spirit essence” may be intimated by the narrative in the first known “giving of this spirit” in Genesis creation of man.
Let us first establish who was the Creator in Genesis and where was this person at the time when man was created.
While there is no doubt that it was the Father who planned creation, it was the spirit-composed YHVH ELOHIM(EL SHADDAI) who proximately created all, the invisible and visible to us. No other spirit-composed person directly participated in this creation, not even the Father. And, man-Jesus was the incarnated YHVH ELOHIM, the Word (John 1:1-5). The first “living beings” created were the “spirit-composed” angels, including Lucifer(Isaiah 14:12:15), thereafter, the material world, inanimate and animate:
Col. 1:16-20 “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him:
And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.
And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.
For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;
And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.”
Job 38:4-7 “Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? or who hath stretched the line upon it? Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? or who laid the corner stone thereof; When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons(angels) of God shouted for joy? “
The creation of the visible world and Adam was narrated in Genesis 1. But, notice the creation of Adam and where the Creator was :
Gen. 2:7 “And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul(being). “
Notice that when Adam was formed from the “dust of the ground” he was not alive until the “breath of life” (the spirit-component of man) was “breathe into his nostrils”, then he became a “living being”. All his material components, from head to toe, were still dead. Remember that “the body without the spirit is dead, being alone” (James 3:26). He became a “living being” only after this “breath of life”, the spirit-component, came into him. The composition of a living person is “body+ spirit”. The body/matter-component came from earth and therefore “earthy”. But, the “breath of life” the “spirit of man”(the spirit-component) came directly from a spirit-composed YHVH ELOHIM. It appears conceptually, that this “spirit” (the spirit of life , the breath of life) is an energy that empowers, much like gravitational power, mechanical power, electrical power, nuclear power, etc. and not a person. YHVH ELOHIM (Lord God Creator ) has this power that brings life to his physical creation by breathing this life-energy into the body. And, there will be another power that man will be given in the future. Notice that the resurrected Jesus-Son of God, was given another “creative power” (the Holy Spirit of power; not a person) by the Father, and that time, it was power that created spirit-composed “children of God”. Without this power, there will be no salvation from eternal death. This is very important to receive from the Father that Jesus had to die and be resurrected, so that we can be “saved through his life“(Rom. 5:10).
Also, in Isaiah 64:8 he was described as a “potter” with “hands on” although not necessarily using his actual hands.
“But now, O LORD, You are our Father, We are the clay, and You our potter; And all of us are the work of Your hand.”
One can assume that the Creator-God was on earth and using his own hands in creating man-Adam. As to whether any man saw God “face-face” is controversial as he may show himself as or through a messenger/angel, in a vision or a spirit-composed person has the power to show themselves in a physical and material composition. But certainly, he was in the garden of Eden with Adam & Eve as he was with Abraham and others, in whatever form. (Read Gen. 2:15-23; 18:1-3, 22, 32; 19:1;Ex.3:2-6; Ex. 4:10, 11; 33:11,20; Isaiah 1:1 6:1; Daniel 7:2,9; Amos 1:1, 9:1; Gal. 3:19; Acts 7:53; Heb.11:27).
There are numerous verses that support the generally accepted teaching that the God in the Old Testament(1), the YHVH ELOHIM(EL SHADDAI) incarnated into the man-Jesus. And, this “spirit-composed” person (YHVH ELOHIM) was the origin of that “breath of life”; the “spirit-of-man” that empowered the body to be alive. There was no other spirit/composed person who did the creation but YHVH ELOHIM who used his spirit-power to create as in:
Gen. 1:2 “And 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.”
The incarnated YHVH ELOHIM, as man-Jesus, also used the same “spirit-power” only after (not before), it was “baptized” to him at river Jordan. It was the Father (not any other spirit-person) who gave him this “spirit-power” to create the world, as well as for him, as a human, to overcome Satan after 40 days of fast, the same spirit-guidance he followed and not his own will (Matt. 3:16; Luke 3:22;Luke 23:39-46). The Holy Spirit of power enabled him to create and overcome evil (Acts 1:8; 2:1-4;2 Corinthians 2:12; Acts 2:43; 3:1–7; 9:39–41).
This verse does not necessarily mean there was another separate, living “spirit-composed person” who was involved in the actual or proximately the “Co-creator”. There is no basis for the presence of a “Co-Creator”, whether the Father or another “person “ as the Trinity doctrine may assume.
Is the Holy Spirit another person/body in the Trinity concept or a power?
The history in the development of this Trinity concept is an eye-opener(2). Those in the forefront of religion are unanimous in the acceptance of the fact that before and during the “apostolic era”, this concept was unknown. The only God that Israel knew was the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that wrote on “tables of stone” the Decalogue, the Torah(3) and was handed down through Moses and on:
“Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching[Torah].” (Proverbs 1:8)
“My son, do not forget my teaching[Torah], but keep my commands in your heart”. (Proverbs 3:1)
But, in the 3rd and 4th century, this Trinity doctrine was in full discussion causing a rift in the Christian world, especially between Athanasius and Arius, both respected leaders. To finally bring an end to this controversy, Constantine called for a Council in Nicea to bring conclusion to this, leading to Trinity Doctrine, the Nicean or Athanasian Creed.
Looking at the history of this doctrine and knowing what we know now, we realize that the root-cause of this rift was a misinterpretation of the nature and usage of the word “elohim “. See Reference #1 for analysis.
There is no Trinity. In fact, the Father has started, with the power of the Holy Spirit at river Jordan, begetting “children of God” with the “pioneer” Jesus, who manifested after resurrection as the “Son of God”, then subsequently, us. The family that God is creating is not limited to 2 persons, the Father and Son, but many other “sons and daughters of God”, aka, “spiritual church of God”, the “kingdom of God”, all spirit-beings, higher in the hierarchy than angels(Heb. 1:4-14). Not animal kingdom or human kingdom, but kingdom of God. With this Holy Spirit of power, the Father is building this “kingdom of God“, with Jesus as the “head of this church“.
When and how was this Holy Spirit given?
It is well known that the Holy Spirit that empowered man-Jesus was the first recipient at Jordan river(Matt. 3:16). It is therefore given after the “breath of life“(the life-giving energy) was given for a flesh-composed person to live After Jesus’ resurrection, the Father gave this power to the Son-of-God Jesus (John 16:7) to then be given out to “believers”. Subsequently, this power was given at Pentecost to his apostles then to others, as in;
Gal. 3:2-5 “The only thing I want to learn from you is this: Did you receive the Spirit by doing the works of the law or by believing what you heard? Are you so foolish? Although you began with the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by human effort? Have you suffered so many things for nothing? – if indeed it was for nothing. Does God then give you the Spirit and work miracles among you by your doing the works of the law or by your believing what you heard?
The power of the Holy Spirit originates from the Father, then given to man-Jesus to empower him to become “Son of God” by resurrection, then afterwards given to him by the Father, to then be distributed by Jesus(Son of God) to believers. Much like the power to create all from the beginning was given to him, so was this power (Holy Spirit) given to him at his resurrection to now “create” “sons and daughters of God “. This power is being used to “build the spiritual church” through the process of salvation (4).
What is the Holy Spirit for?
Much like any power, e.g., mechanical, electrical, nuclear, gravitational, solar, etc. the Holy Spirit empowers believers in many ways. But it does not force us without our consent and decision. The Father does not like “robots “. The Holy Spirit has many functions as written in the Holy Bible. This is key ingredient that believers must have in the process of salvation. The mechanism of how this happens is explained by Jesus (5).
Once inside our “temple”, the “holy of holies” in our mind, it helps and guides our spirit-of-man to do what is good. The “spirit of man” is much like an “egg” and the Holy Spirit is like the “sperm” in the process of “fertilization “. Through many changes and overcoming challenges, it then develops into a zygote. And with growth/development in the “uterus” of the “mother/church”, it becomes a mature fetus and ripe for “delivery”. It subsequently manifests “full-term” at “delivery” as “newborn child of God” at resurrection of the “firstfruits “, as in;
Rom. 8:19 ” the earnest expectation of the creation waits for the manifestation of the sons of God.”
This is the fulfillment of being “born again”(6).
The Holy Spirit is a power that originates from the Father. It is not a “person” nor limited to three persons in the doctrine of Trinity which evolved in the 3rd/4th century because of misunderstanding the nature of God in conjunction with the Shema doctrine of “oneness”. It is very important in the eventual “building” of the “kingdom of God”, the “church of God”, all “spirit/composed”.
The first man as promised, who received this gift of the Holy Spirit, was man-Jesus at river Jordan because of his belief in the Father that what he promised, he will fulfill. This was the power that enabled him to overcome temptation of Satan at the mount after fasting 40 days/night. This is the same power that guided him to the way of the Father, following God’s will rather than his’ in the garden of Gethsemane. In contrast, Adam in the garden of Eden succumbed to Satan’s temptation because of his weakness and lack of this power that provides wisdom.
Only after Jesus’ resurrection, as “Son of God”, was he given by the Father, the same power, but for him to bestow to others who believe. At Pentecost, Jesus gave this power to the apostles and since then to other believers into this day. As Jesus, the forerunner (beginner,trailblazer, precursor,pioneer) was empowered to be sanctified and glorified, we who are “called” during this period, will alsobe “sanctified” and become “overcomers” to endure through the end. As Jesus was glorified as “Son of God”, we will also be glorified with him as “children of God”, all spirit-composed.
Being so, we will be immortal and live eternally. Instead of the family of God limited to three, as falsely woven into the Trinity Doctrine, there will in fact be numerous members of this family, like the many stars in heaven as promised to Abraham(Gen. 22:17; 26:4).
This process is the very essence of salvation from “second death”, for usthen to say“death where is thy sting?” (I Cor. 15:55-57).
May God Bless you.
1. FATHER’S DAY_USA.2014 Retrieved 5/3/18 at http://fact-s.net/2018/05/03/1208/
2. Trinity Deconstructed. Retrieved 5/3/18 at https://fact-s.net/2014/08/06/trinity-doctrine-deconstructed/
See also: https://www.ucg.org/studienhilfen/broschuren/is-god-a-trinity/is-the-holy-spirit-a-person
3. Torah. Retrieved 5/3/18 at http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/m/articles_torah.html
4. Justification, Reconciliation, sanctification and Glorification. Retrieved 5/4/18 at http://fact-s.net/2018/05/01/justification-reconciliation-sanctification-and-glorification
5. Kingdom of God in Human Anatomy. Retrieved 5/3/18 at http://fact-s.net/2016/12/21/kingdom-of-god-in-human-anatomy/
6. Born Again? Retrieved 5/4/18 from http://fact-s.net/2017/03/12/born-again/
Original Post: 5/4/2018
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I disagree with your conclusion. Christ himself calls the Holy Spirit a He (When the Spirit of truth comes…, He will reveal all truth… He will take of mine and declare it to you). The in itself show the Holy Spirit is a person.
And the Holy Spirit declares you concltion to be incorrect. He is One with the Father and the Son.
Just remember that the “he” was not in the original, although put in there in the “translation”. Just minutiae?
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