But, who is the Holy Spirit, really?

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Praise the Lord, family!

Glynis and I are so grateful for you. We are so amazed that you allow us to be your pastors. We can’t wait to have all our family members back in the house, and we hope that all of our online family will be able to visit us sometime soon.

In last week’s Connect Point, we talked about the “FIRE of the HOLY SPIRIT,” and today, I want to talk about the person of the Holy Spirit.

Have you ever seen a picture or a movie where someone tried to give us an image of what God might look like? If you have, you most likely saw a picture of a human who has long white hair and a long white beard with a blazing white robe and is incredibly majestic in nature. While pictures of the Lord Jesus are found everywhere, and He is depicted as a person who has brown hair, brown eyes, and a brown beard. But where have you ever seen a picture of the Holy Spirit? Most likely, in the attempt to give us an image of the Holy Spirit, people use the appearance of a dove, fire, or some other idea. Even though the Bible does refer to the Holy Spirit by using certain imagery, let me assure you the Holy Spirit is not a bird or a flame of fire.

If we aren’t careful, we can think of the Holy Spirit in some very impersonal terms. I read about a first-grade Sunday School class that was having a party. The teacher asked all of the children to come dressed as Bible characters. Well, one little boy came dressed in a shepherd’s outfit with a slingshot, and he said, “I’m David.” Another little boy came wearing a wig with long hair and sponges underneath his shirt, his arms, and chest, making him look big and strong, and said, “I’m Samson.” One little girl came in with nothing but a sheet over her head with the eyes cut out. The teacher said, “Who are you?” She said, “Boo! I’m the Holy Ghost.”

In the King James Version, He is called “the Holy Ghost.” And we sometimes think of Him as something like “the force” in Star Wars or a power like electricity. But the Holy Spirit is not just an invisible force or simply a godly influence. Nor is He just a heavenly power. He is all of these things, and He is more than these things.

Understand, He is invisible; we cannot see Him, but He watches over us twenty-four-seven. We usually don’t hear His physical voice, but He hears our innermost thoughts. You cannot feel Him, but He never leaves our side.

As we know, the wind is a force with incredible strength. It can snap a tree in two. It can demolish a building in seconds. Energized by a hurricane or a tornado, it can clean out an entire community in a matter of seconds. There is incredible power in what you can’t even see. If you put it into a network of hoses and valves then put it under enough pressure, it can stop a bus or a tractor-trailer dead in its tracks. It can even stop a train pulling over a hundred cars.

You can’t see the wind, you can’t smell it, you can’t really measure it or weigh it, but it keeps you alive every minute of every day. You take air away for five minutes, and at best, you will have brain damage - at worst, you will be dead. We can’t live without it, yet we fly with it, drive with it, breathe it, and work with it, but we don’t even think about it.

Too often, we treat the Holy Spirit like we treat wind. You might be surprised to know that the Bible talks a lot about the air. The Old Testament calls it Ruach. The New Testament calls it Pneuma, which gives us the word pneumatic. But we translate it not as air but as “breath.” Or sometimes it is called wind. But frequently, it is called Spirit.

You see, even though the Spirit is invisible, He is not immaterial, nor is He impersonal. The Holy Spirit is not an “It.” If you have a KJV before you, Rom. 8:16 says, “The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God.”

Now the reason why the KJV translators did this was that they did not distinguish between the gender of words. There are three genders in the Greek language: masculine, feminine, and neuter. The Greek word Spirit is neuter. So they translated this as “Itself.” But we know the Holy Spirit is a person.

First of all, we know the Holy Spirit must be a person because both God the Father and God the Son are people. Jesus told the disciples in John 14:16, “And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever.” The word He uses there for “another” is significant.

There are two Greek words for the English word “another.” One Greek word is the word heteros, from which we get the word heterosexual. This word means “another of a different kind.” But the word Jesus used is the word allos, which means “another of the same kind.” What Jesus said, in effect, was, “I’m going to leave you, but I’m going to send you someone just like Me.” Just as Jesus is a person, the Spirit is a person.

In Rom. 8:27, we are told the Holy Spirit thinks. In Rom. 8:26, we are told the Holy Spirit prays. John 14:26 tells us the Holy Spirit teaches. Rom. 15:30 tells us the Holy Spirit loves. Eph. 4:30 says the Holy Spirit can be grieved. Family, only a real person can do these things.

The Holy Spirit is not just a power that we need to get hold of, but a Person who needs to get hold of us. When the Lord Jesus was on earth, He was shackled by the body that had been formed in the womb of his mother. Jesus, when He was on earth, could only be in one place at one time. But when the Holy Spirit came, He would not only be everywhere at once, but He would also be in everyone who knows the Lord Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit who is within you is also with you at all times because He is a real person.

 

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