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 Issues | Holy Spirit | Divinity of the Holy Spirit

The Divinity of the Holy Spirit.

Compared to the Biblical teaching on the divinity of Christ that on the divinity of the Holy Spirit is relatively scarce. Nevertheless once it is understood that Scripture teaches that Christ is fully divine and yet differentiated from God the Father then it is easy to see how the teaching on the Holy Spirit also reveals that the He is divine and yet differentiated from both the Father and the Son.

Likewise, historically, error arose in the churches first regarding the divinity of Christ to which the early Christians responded in Councils and Creeds. The classical formulation of the doctrine of the Trinity, which clearly summarises Biblical teaching, arose as a response to error, as a means of denying false and unbiblical views of God.

Some passages in Scripture

Acts ch 5 v3-4 – It is said that Ananias and Saphira have lied to the Holy Spirit, which is immediately qualified, that they have lied to God.

Acts chapter 28 verse 25 – the Apostle Paul states ‘the Holy Spirit spoke the truth…when he said through the prophet Isaiah…’ The quotation that then follows is from Isaiah chapter 6 verse 9, where it is clear that the one speaking is in fact the LORD.

Ephesians chapter 2 verse 22
This teaches that God dwells in the Christian ‘by His Spirit’. But if the Spirit were something other than God how could this be.

The Holy Spirit is frequently referred to as ‘the Spirit of God’ which might just be a way of speaking but, coupled with everything else, shows that the Spirit is part of the godhead. For example 1 Corinthians chapter 3 verse 16 : Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

Gal. 4:6 ¶ And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!”

Matt. 28:19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,

1Pet. 1:2 elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, for obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ:

Paul says (Ephesians chapter 2 verse 22) that Christians are being built together ‘for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit’. And the Spirit indwells each individual believer; ‘your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God,’ (1 Corinthians 6:19, cf. 1 Corinthians 3:13). Thus through the Spirit we can know God, but without the Spirit we cannot truly know God because His Spirit is not in us (see also 1 John ch 4 v 13).

Historic Creeds and Formularies

Article 5 : Of the Holy Ghost.
The Holy Ghost, proceeding from the Father and the Son, is of one substance, majesty, and glory, with the Father and the Son, very and eternal God.

Nicene Creed
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son
he is worshipped and glorified.

Athanasian Creed
For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son,
and another of the Holy Spirit,
but the Godhead of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit is all one,
their glory equal, their majesty co-eternal........

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