You Have An Unction
The Holy Spirit Is A Divine Person
Dr. David Clifford makes his home in Ringwood, Hants, England with American headquarters in Plantation, Florida. This is the second of his series of studies on the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of the divine Father and the divine Son and co-equal with both in the Godhead. In John 14:23 the Lord Jesus, speaking of the coming of the Spirit, said, “If anyone loves me … my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and make our abode with him.” In other words, by the coming of the Spirit, both of them would come. The baptism formula seen in Matthew 28:19 (which is part of the great commission of our Lord to His disciples) is stated in a most significant way as follows: “Baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
A careful examination of the first few verses of Acts 5 will reveal that Annanias and Sapphira, in lying to the Holy Spirit, actually lied to God. The Jehovah title is seen in the NASB and other versions in reference to the Holy Spirit in 2 Corinthians 3:17, and a similar Old Testament reference is found in Isaiah 61:1, which reads, “The Spirit of Jehovah is upon me.”
His Divine Attributes
The Scriptures not only present the Holy Spirit as an equal of the Father and the Son, but, as we have seen, He is actually referred to as God. Then, as an unquestionable corroboration, the Word reveals the attributes of the Holy Spirit to be the attributes which are divine. His omnipotence is seen in the fact that Christ was quickened (following His crucificion and death) by the Spirit (cf. 1 Pet. 3:118 with Eph. 1:20). His omnipresence is stated by David in Psalm 139:7: “Where can I go from thy Spirit?” The words of Hebrews 9:14 clearly show His eternity which is a divine attribute: “The eternal Spirit.” A further attribute of God, that of His holiness, is noted many times in His title “the HOLY Spirit” throughout the entire Bible.
His Divine Works
The works of the Holy Spirit in both the Old and New Testaments declare in themselves that they are divine works. The work of creation is His (see Gen. 1:2; Job 26:13; Psa. 33:6), and the continuous work of Providence is His also, for we read:
“Thy Spirit … renews the face of the ground” (Psa. 104:30). His work in the life of the sinner who believes in the Lord Jesus Christ, effecting the new birth in him and thus making him a new creature, is the divine work of regeneration (John 3:5), and His is the work of resurrection also (Rom. 8:11).
The Holy Spirit is the source of the miraculous as affirmed by the Lord, when He said, “I cast out demons by the Spirit of God” (Matt. 12:28). The section in 1 Corinthians 12:9-11 speaks of miracles by the Spirit, as He wills. His omnipotence, and also His Sovereignty, are thus here revealed. The Scriptures themselves are referred to as the “incorruptible” seed of the Word of God, and it is by the instrumentality of the Word that men are regenerated (see 1 Pet. 1:23), coupled with the fact that the Holy Spirit is, of course, the divine Author of the Scriptures (2 Pet. 1:21). The word “Spirit” in some versions of the Bible will be seen to have a small “s” and sometimes at first reading it may be difficult to know if the Holy Spirit is being spoken about. There were no capital letters in the original text, but a careful study of the context will almost always reveal whether or not it is actually the Spirit Himself in question.
It is not wrong to use the term “Holy Ghost,” but as we have intimated earlier, it is an old English word from the 17th century and, although in some versions it is used interchangeably with “Holy Spirit,” these days it is more desireable to keep to the latter.
Prove All Things
John Wesley said that there are “twin fools” all over the world: one person believing nothing; the other, believing everything. We need to be neither the one nor the other. Scripture tells us to “prove (i.e. test) all things; hold fast that which is good” (1 Thess. 5:12).
—from The Pilgrim