By A. C. Grider
This article would be too long if I were to try to tell you what I do not know about the Holy Spirit. Besides, I can not tell you what I do not know about it; for I do not know what all I do not know. So I am setting forth a few things that I do know concerning the Holy Spirit.
I know, that the Holy Spirit is not an “it” or “an influence” or “the mind of God” or “the New Testament.” Rather, the New Testament, and the Old Testament, as well, plainly set forth that the Holy Spirit is a person. Attributes ascribed to the Holy Spirit belong only to a person or persons. For instance, The Holy Spirit has knowledge. This is declared in 1 Cor. 2:10-11. The Holy Spirit knows the mind of God. But the Holy Spirit wills to do certain things (1 Cor. 12:11). And the Holy Spirit has a mind (Rom. 8:27). Persons know, and will, and have a mind. Hence the Holy Spirit is a person.
The actions of the Holy Spirit declare in no uncertain terms that He is a person. The Holy Spirit hears (John 16:13); He speaks (1 Tim. 4:1); and he makes intercession (Rom. 8:26-27). But a person can hear and speak and make intercession. So, I repeat, the Holy Spirit is a person.
I know that the Holy Spirit has a sword and that this sword is the Word of God (Eph. 6:17). It is evident, therefore, that the Spirit works through the word.
I know that to be filled with the Spirit (Eph. 9:18-19) is the same as letting the word dwell in us (Col. 3:16). These are parallel passages, as everyone can plainly see.
I know that God dwells in us. The Bible tells me so (1 John 4:13, 15). But I also know that Christ dwells in us (Eph. 3:17). The Bible tells me that the Holy Spirit also dwells in us (Rom. 8:9; 1 Cor. 3:16).
I know that Christ dwells in our hearts by faith (Eph. 3:17). In the absence of any teaching to the contrary, I know that the Holy Spirit as well as God also dwells in our hearts by faith.
I know the Holy Spirit testifies (John 15:26), but that he testifies through the word (John 5:39). I know the Holy Spirit saves (Titus 3:5), but that he saves through the Word (Jas. 1:21). I know the Holy Spirit teaches (1 Cor. 2:13), but that he teaches through the word (2 Tim. 3:16-17). I know the Holy Spirit comforts (Acts 9:31), but that he comforts through the word (1 Thes. 4:18). I know I could go on and on showing that whatever the Holy Spirit does, he does it through the word. I know, therefore that while the Holy Spirit works, he works only through the word of God. And I know that while the Holy Spirit dwells in us, he does so only through the word of God.
I know that a lot of people are doing a lot of speculating about the Holy Spirit and his words and his deeds. But I know that we had better confine our teaching concerning the Holy Spirit to just what the Bible says on the subject and give more heed to what we should do to obey our Heavenly Father than what He (The Holy Spirit) has done, is doing, or shall do.
Let us all strive to be filled with the Spirit (Eph. 5:19), to be led of the Spirit (Gal. 5:18), and to walk after the Spirit (Rom. 8:1). But let us be reminded that we can accomplish this if we will follow the teachings of the New Testament.
Truth Magazine XIX: 11, p. 166
January 23, 1975