The Holy Spirit And The Godhead

 

Introduction

The following Scriptures and quotations reflect just a few of the hundreds of items that I have collected on the Holy Spirit from the Bible and the writings of Ellen White. As you may know, there are those who suggest the Holy Spirit is only an influence, similar perhaps to what Unitarians believe. I am not of that opinion at all. There are too many exceedingly clear statements regarding the distinct personhood of the Holy Spirit to adopt the "influence" perspective.—Dan  

 

Scriptures And Quotations

An Introductory Thought

"Before this the Spirit had been in the world; from the very beginning of the work of redemption He had been moving upon men’s hearts. But while Christ was on earth, the disciples had desired no other helper. {DA 669.1} The Holy Spirit is Christ’s representative, but divested of the personality of humanity, and independent thereof. Cumbered with humanity, Christ could not be in every place personally. Therefore it was for their interest that He should go to the Father, and send the Spirit to be His successor on earth. … By the Spirit the Saviour would be accessible to all. In this sense He would be nearer to them than if He had not ascended on high. {DA 669.2}

 

Christ Promised To Send The Holy Spirit

John 16:7 (KJV) 7 "Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you."

"Many things that were desirable Christ had set before His disciples, but the gift of the Holy Spirit was the all-powerful subject. In receiving the Holy Spirit, all other blessings would be included. It is the richest gift, of the greatest and most extensive plentitude. The capacity of the human agent alone determines the greatness of the gift he may receive. God help us to receive the rich gift of the Holy Spirit. Have faith in God, trust in Him, and you will have light and life." {Lt150-1897.12}

 

The Disciples Were Told To Tarry and Seek For The Spirit

Luke 24:48-49 (KJV) 48 "And ye are witnesses of these things. 49 And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high." 

Acts 1:8 (KJV) 8 "But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth."

"It was after the early disciples had spent ten days in supplication, after all differences had been put away, and they had united in deep heart-searching, and in confession and putting away of sins, and in drawing together in holy fellowship, that the Holy Ghost came upon them, and the promise of Christ was fulfilled. There was a wonderful outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Suddenly there came from heaven the sound as of a rushing, mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 'And the same day there was added to them about three thousand souls.'" [Acts 2:41.] {Lt34-1909.11}

 

On The Day Of Pentecost The Praying Disciples Received The Holy Spirit

Acts 2:1-4 (KJV) 1 "And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. 3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance."

"Christ’s ascension to heaven was the signal that His followers were to receive the promised blessing. For this they were to wait before they entered upon their work. When Christ passed within the heavenly gates, He was enthroned amidst the adoration of the angels. As soon as this ceremony was completed, the Holy Spirit descended upon the disciples in rich currents, and Christ was indeed glorified, even with the glory which He had with the Father from all eternity. The Pentecostal outpouring was Heaven’s communication that the Redeemer’s inauguration was accomplished. According to His promise He had sent the Holy Spirit from heaven to His followers as a token that He had, as priest and king, received all authority in heaven and on earth, and was the Anointed One over His people."  {AA 38.3} 

 

This Is The Dispensation Of The Holy Spirit

"The dispensation in which we are now living is to be, to those that ask, the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. Ask for his blessing. It is time we were more intense in our devotion. To us is committed the arduous, but happy, glorious work of revealing Christ to those who are in darkness. We are called to proclaim the special truths for this time. For all this the outpouring of the Spirit is essential. We should pray for it. The Lord expects us to ask him. We have not been whole hearted in this work." {RH March 2, 1897, par. 13}

 

The Holy Spirit Is A Mystery

John 3:8 (KJV) 8 "The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit." 

"It is not essential for us to be able to define just what the Holy Spirit is. Christ tells us that the Spirit is the Comforter, “the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father.” It is plainly declared regarding the Holy Spirit that, in His work of guiding men into all truth, “He shall not speak of Himself.” John 15:26; 16:13. {AA 51.3} The nature of the Holy Spirit is a mystery. Men cannot explain it, because the Lord has not revealed it to them. Men having fanciful views may bring together passages of Scripture and put a human construction on them, but the acceptance of these views will not strengthen the church. Regarding such mysteries, which are too deep for human understanding, silence is golden." {AA 52.1 1911}

 

The Holy Spirit Was Pre-existent

Genesis 1:2 (KJV) 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."

"It is the glory of the gospel that it is founded on the principles of restoring in the fallen race the divine image. The Godhead was stirred with pity for the race, and the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit gave themselves to the working out of the plan of redemption. In order fully to carry out this plan, it was decided that Christ, the only begotten Son of God, should give himself an offering for sin. And in giving Christ, God gave all the resources of heaven, that nothing might be wanting for the work of man’s uplifting. What line can measure the depth of this love? God would make it impossible for man to say that he could have done more." {RH May 2, 1912, par. 3}

"From the beginning, God has been working by His Holy Spirit through human instrumentalities for the accomplishment of His purpose in behalf of the fallen race. This was manifest in the lives of the patriarchs. To the church in the wilderness also, in the time of Moses, God gave His “good Spirit to instruct them.” Nehemiah 9:20. And in the days of the apostles He wrought mightily for His church through the agency of the Holy Spirit. The same power that sustained the patriarchs, that gave Caleb and Joshua faith and courage, and that made the work of the apostolic church effective, has upheld God’s faithful children in every succeeding age. It was through the power of the Holy Spirit that during the Dark Ages the Waldensian Christians helped to prepare the way for the Reformation. It was the same power that made successful the efforts of the noble men and women who pioneered the way for the establishment of modern missions and for the translation of the Bible into the languages and dialects of all nations and peoples." {AA 53.1}

 

The Holy Spirit Is A Person

John 16:13-14 (KJV) 13 "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. 14 He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you."

"We have been brought together as a school, and we need to realize that the Holy Spirit, who is as much a person as God is a person, is walking through these grounds, unseen by human eyes, that the Lord God is our Keeper and Helper. He hears every word we utter and knows every thought of the mind." {Ms66-1899.11}

"There are three living persons of the heavenly trio; in the name of these three great powers—the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—those who receive Christ by living faith are baptized, and these powers will co-operate with the obedient subjects of heaven in their efforts to live the new life in Christ." {Ms21-1906.11}

 

The Holy Spirit Is Distinct From Christ

John 14:16 (KJV) 16 "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;"

"The Holy Spirit is the Comforter, in Christ’s name. He personifies Christ, yet is a distinct personality." {Ms93-1893.8}

"As the Saviour came to glorify the Father by the demonstration of his love, so the Spirit came to glorify Christ by revealing to the world the riches of his love and grace. If the Holy Spirit dwells in us, our work will testify to the fact, we shall lift up Jesus." {RH December 23, 1890, Art. B, par. 22}

 

The Holy Spirit Is The Third Person Of The Godhead

Acts 5:3-4 (KJV) 3 "But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? 4 Whilst it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God."

"Evil had been accumulating for centuries, and could only be restrained and resisted by the mighty power of the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Godhead, who would come with no modified energy, but in the fulness of divine power. Another spirit must be met; for the essence of evil was working in all ways, and the submission of man to this satanic captivity was amazing." {Lt8-1896.2

"The Comforter that Christ promised to send after He ascended to heaven, is the Spirit in all the fulness of the Godhead, making manifest the power of divine grace to all who receive and believe in Christ as a personal Saviour." {Ms21-1906.11}

 

We Are To Believe In The Agency Of The Holy Spirit

John 14:16-17 (KJV) 16 "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you."

"Those who see Christ in His true character, and receive Him into the heart, have everlasting life. It is through the Spirit that Christ dwells in us; and the Spirit of God, received into the heart by faith, is the beginning of the life eternal." {DA 388.1} [1898]

"We cannot render to God supreme love and honor if we do not recognize the Holy Spirit which the Lord sends. The Holy Spirit represents Jesus Christ. He is our refuge unto whom we can run and be safe. He is always present with the human agent." {Ms59-1900.34}

 

The Holy Spirit Dwelt In Christ When He Was On Earth

Mark 1:10-11 (KJV) 10 "And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him: 11 And there came a voice from heaven, saying, Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." 

Luke 4:1 (KJV) 1 "And Jesus being full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness," 

Luke 4:14 (KJV) 14 "And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about."

"The disciples of Christ were to have a new experience after Pentecost. The promise of the Father now became the promise of the Son. The same Holy Spirit that abode in Christ when He imparted to them the instruction He was constantly receiving was to be the source of their intelligence and the secret of their power in doing the very same work that Christ Himself had done. In bearing witness of Him, they were to have a precious experience." {Lt218-1906}

 

Because Christ, The First Comforter, Ascended To Heaven, It Was Necessary For Him To Send Another Comforter As His Successor

John 16:7 (KJV) 7 "Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you."

"Cumbered with humanity, Christ could not be in every place personally; therefore it was altogether for their advantage that He should leave them, go to His Father, and send the Holy Spirit to be His successor on earth. The Holy Spirit is Himself, divested of the personality of humanity, and independent thereof. He would represent Himself as present in all places by His Holy Spirit, as the Omnipresent. “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall [although unseen by you] teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. ... Nevertheless, I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.” [John 14:26; 16:7.] {Lt119-1895.18}

"When Christ ascended to heaven, the Holy Spirit took his place, and was a perfect representation of him. It is the work of the Spirit to administer the richest grace, and make it effectual in the hearts of God’s people, that the elect may be gathered into one family." { Lt126-1898}

 

The Holy Spirit Is Christ's Representative

John 15:26 (KJV) 26 "But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:"

"The Holy Spirit is Christ’s representative, but divested of the personality of humanity, and independent thereof." {DA 669.2}

"Christ determined to bestow a gift on those who had been with Him and on those who should believe on Him, because this was the occasion of His ascension and inauguration, a jubilee in heaven. What gift could Christ bestow rich enough to signalize and grace His ascension to the mediatorial throne? It must be worthy of His greatness and His royalty. Christ gave His representative, the third person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit. This gift could not be excelled. The divine Spirit, converting, enlightening, sanctifying, would be His donation, because He would give all gifts in one." {Ms44-1898.11}

 

The Holy Spirit Is Another Comforter

John 14:16 (KJV) 16 "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;"

"Now that He is in heaven, the Holy Spirit is our Comforter." {Ms175-1897}

"The Holy Spirit is the Comforter, in Christ’s name. He personifies Christ, yet is a distinct personality. We may have the Holy Spirit if we ask for it and make it [a] habit to turn to and trust in God rather than in any finite human agent who may make mistakes." {Ms93-1893.8}

 

The Holy Spirit Is The Spirit Of Truth

John 16:13 (KJV) 13 "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come."

"The Comforter is called “the Spirit of truth.” His work is to define and maintain the truth. He first dwells in the heart as the Spirit of truth, and thus He becomes the Comforter. There is comfort and peace in the truth, but no real peace or comfort can be found in falsehood." {DA 671.1}

 

The Holy Spirit Is The Spirit Of Christ

Romans 8:9 (KJV) 9 "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his."

"True faith and repose in God are always accompanied by the illuminations of the Holy Spirit, whose temple we are. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ, it is His representative. Here is the divine agency that carries conviction to hearts. When the power of His spirit is revealed through the servants of God, we behold divinity flashing through humanity. When accompanied by the Holy Spirit, the presentation of truth as it is in Jesus will be of more value than all the honor or glory of the world." {Lt18-1895.12}

 

Christ Is An Unseen Presence In The Holy Spirit

John 14:18 (KJV) 18 "I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you."

"What saith our Saviour? “I will not leave thee comfortless; I will come unto you.” “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me; and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father; and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.” When trials overshadow the soul, remember the words of Christ, remember that He is an unseen presence in the person of the Holy Spirit, and He will be the peace and comfort given you, manifesting to you that He is with you, the Sun of Righteousness, chasing away your darkness." {Lt124-1897.10}

"Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, when the personal presence of Christ was removed, the disciples realized no break in their communion, and no diminution of power because of His absence. Through the Holy Spirit, greater efficiency and power was imparted to them, because Jesus was their Advocate in heaven. His intercession before the Father availed for them more than did His personal presence with them when compassed with the impediments of humanity." {Ms42-1895.4}

"Christ, through the operation of the Spirit, had His abiding place in each individual soul, and grace and peace were multiplied through the knowledge of the fact that they had a risen Saviour who made an atonement for every one who came to Him by faith." {Ms42-1895.5}

 

We Can Pray To The Spirit

"When I [Ellen White] feel oppressed and hardly know how to relate myself toward the work that God has given me to do, I just call upon the three great Worthies, and say: You know I cannot do this work in my own strength. You must work in me, and by me, and through me, sanctifying my tongue, sanctifying my spirit, sanctifying my words, and bringing me into a position where my spirit shall be susceptible to the movings of the Holy Spirit of God upon my mind and character." {Ms95-1906.29}

 

The Holy Spirit Plays A Key Connected Role In Our Lives

"It is through the Spirit that Christ dwells in us; and the Spirit of God, received into the heart by faith, is the beginning of the life eternal." {DA 388.1}

"Those who unite with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, who show by their lives that they are no longer following the course they followed before they united with these divine instrumentalities, will receive wisdom from above. ... After we have formed a union with the great threefold power, we shall regard our duty toward the members of God’s family with a much more sacred awe than we have ever done before." {Ms11-1901.8}

 

We Should Pray And Seek For The Holy Spirit

Luke 11:13 (KJV) 13 "If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?"

"We are to pray for the impartation of the Spirit as the remedy for sin-sick souls. The church needs to be converted, and why should we not prostrate ourselves at the throne of grace, as representatives of the church, and from a broken heart and contrite spirit make earnest supplication that the Holy Spirit shall be poured out upon us from on high? Let us pray that when it shall be graciously bestowed, our cold hearts may be revived, and we may have discernment to understand that it is from God, and receive it with joy." { 1888 1540.1 } 

 

We Should Seek For The Baptism Of The Holy Spirit

Acts 1:5 (KJV) 5 "For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence."

"For the daily baptism of the Spirit every worker should offer his petition to God. Companies of Christian workers should gather to ask for special help, for heavenly wisdom, that they may know how to plan and execute wisely. Especially should they pray that God will baptize His chosen ambassadors in mission fields with a rich measure of His Spirit. The presence of the Spirit with God’s workers will give the proclamation of truth a power that not all the honor or glory of the world could give."  {AA 50.2}

 

We Cannot Honor God If We Do Not Recognize The Holy Spirit—Third Person Of The Godhead

"We need to dwell more constantly and earnestly upon the grace of the Holy Spirit. This we do not discern with our natural eyes, yet by faith we see its office work, and we cannot render to God supreme love and honor if we do not recognize the Holy Spirit which the Lord sends. The Holy Spirit represents Jesus Christ. He is our refuge unto whom we can run and be safe. He is always present with the human agent." {Ms59-1900.34}

 

Rejecting The Holy Spirit Is The Sin That Surpasses All Others

Matthew 12:32 (KJV) 32 "And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come."

"To reject the Holy Spirit, through whose power we conquer the forces of evil, is the sin that surpasses all others; for it cuts us off from the source of our power,—from Christ and communion with him." {RH August 25, 1896, par. 11}