WEDNESDAY– God the Holy Spirit
Big Point: Holy Spirit is fully God, always present in Christians’ lives, not a force from God.
The Holy Spirit is the least understood Person of the Trinity. Dictionary.com defines the Holy Spirit as “1. the spirit of God. 2. the presence of God as part of the person’s religious experience. 3. Holy Ghost.” But what does this really mean?
Francis Chan, in his book Forgotten God, tackled the theology of the Holy Spirit in the chapter “Theology of the Holy Spirit 101.” Chan looked at the theological issues of the Holy Spirit that shape our faith and behavior. But he prefaced his explanation of the Holy Spirit by saying, “I realized how ludicrous it would be for anyone to say they were going to explain the Holy Spirit … know that even as you seek to understand the Spirit more, he is so much more and bigger than you will ever be able to grasp… the Bible says we cannot fully understand God, and I am certainly no exception to that rule.”
Yet, Chan continued his writing by explaining some practical truths about who the Holy Spirit is and what he does in our lives. He provides these seven truths about the Holy Spirit:
- The Holy Spirit is a Person
- The Holy Spirit is God
- The Holy Spirit is Eternal and Holy
- The Holy Spirit has his own mind, and he prays for us
- The Holy Spirit has emotions
- The Holy Spirit has his own desires and will
- The Holy Spirit is omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient
Let’s read what the Bible has to say about the Holy Spirit.
READ and THINK…What does the Bible say?
First, let’s look at the work of the Holy Spirit in Scripture. Read John 16:12-15. What word does John use to describe the Holy Spirit? What does John say the Holy Spirit will do when he comes?
John 16:12-15 (New Living Translation)
12 “There is so much more I want to tell you, but you can’t bear it now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future. 14 He will bring me glory by telling you whatever he receives from me. 15 All that belongs to the Father is mine; this is why I said, ‘The Spirit will tell you whatever he receives from me.’
According to Ephesians 3:5, what does the Holy Spirit do?
Ephesians 3:5 (New Living Translation)
5 God did not reveal it to previous generations, but now by his Spirit he has revealed it to his holy apostles and prophets.
In 1 Corinthians 2:10-13, we hear again that God reveals things by his Spirit. Take a look at these verses. Verse 13 helps us to know how the Bible was written and how the Holy Spirit works in us and in our pastors today.
1 Corinthians 2:10-13 (New Living Translation)
10 But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets. 11 No one can know a person’s thoughts except that person’s own spirit and no one can know God’s thoughts except God’s own Spirit. 12 And we have received God’s Spirit (not the world’s spirit), so we can know the wonderful things God has freely given us. 13 When we tell you these things, we do not use words that come from human wisdom. Instead, we speak words given to us by the Spirit, using the Spirit’s words to explain spiritual truths.
What does verse seven in Psalm 139 reassure us about the Holy Spirit’s presence?
Psalm 139:7 (New Living Translation)
7 I can never escape from your Spirit! I can never get away from your presence!
LIVE…What will you do now?
In the past, how have you defined or explained the Holy Spirit?
How will you explain the Holy Spirit to others now after reading these Scripture verses? Do you feel like St. Basil the Great as he described the Holy Spirit?
Describe how you feel.
Have you ever experienced the Holy Spirit’s presence? If so, describe what that was like. How did you know it was the Holy Spirit?
What does the Spirit do? His works are ineffable in majesty, and innumerable in quantity. How can we even ponder what extends beyond the ages? What did he do before creation began? How great are the graces he showered on creation? What power will he wield in the age to come? He existed; he pre-existed; he co-existed with the Father and the Son before the ages. Even if you can imagine anything beyond the ages, you will discover the Spirit is even further beyond.
St. Basil the Great
PRAY…God, what do you want me to know and do?
Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you into all truth and to tell you what he has heard. Thank God for His ever present Holy Spirit.