Is the Holy Ghost a Person?
The title “Holy Ghost” was first mentioned in the New Testament in the book of Matthew.
“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, SHE WAS FOUND WITH CHILD OF THE HOLY GHOST.” “…FOR THAT WHICH IS CONCEIVED IN HER IS OF THE HOLY GHOST.” (Matt. 1:18,20)
These verses clearly indicated that the Holy Ghost is the Father of Jesus; therefore, He must be a Person, but according to the doctrine of the Trinity, the “Holy Ghost” is a separate distinct person from the Father and the Son.
The verses above clearly stated that Jesus was the child of the Holy Ghost.
This poses a problem for the doctrine of the Trinity because as illustrated in the image, it teaches that the Holy Ghost is not the Person called the Father, and the Father is not the Person called the Holy Ghost; therefore, creating a dilemma for the Trinitarians because if they’re to receive the explicit words in those texts, and apply the teaching of the doctrine of the Trinity, then are they praying to the Holy Ghost in the Trinity as their Father in Heaven instead of the other Person called the Father? If not, then why not? If the Holy Ghost in the Trinity is the Father of Jesus, and Jesus said that He is also your Father (See John 20:17), then why do majority of Trinitarians pray to the other Person in the Trinity called the “Father” instead? And how is this Person the “Father” when He does not have a Son because Jesus would actually be the Son of the “Holy Ghost” if we base our belief in the Trinity and consider what we read in Matthew 1:18,20?
Some might argue and say that they are actually addressing the Trinity when they address Him as their “Father” in their prayers, but the doctrine they adhere to explicitly teaches that the Son is the not the Father and neither is the Holy Ghost.
Moreover, the apostle Paul identified the personality of God whom he prayed to as the Father of Jesus Christ, and not to a God composed of the Father, plus the Son, and the Holy Ghost.
“We give thanks to GOD AND THE FATHER OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, PRAYING ALWAYS FOR YOU.” (Col. 1:3)
Paul did not pray to his God calling Him as “the Father” because He was a Trinity, but as One single Person who was the Father of his Lord Jesus Christ. This is why God is called the “Father,” because He has a Son, and through Christ, we could be adopted as God’s children (See Eph. 1:5).
But if we would discard the doctrine of the Trinity, the dilemma is easily solved because we would be able to understand the Bible according to what it actually teaches about the Holy Ghost.
Let’s read how Luke narrated the same scene.
“31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. 32 He shall be great, and shall be called ‘THE SON OF THE HIGHEST’...” (Luke 1:31,32)
But according to Luke, the personality of the “Highest” was the Father.
“35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of ‘THE HIGHEST:’ for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. 36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your ‘FATHER’ also is merciful.” (Luke 6:35,36)
And the “Holy Ghost” that overshadowed Mary to conceive the Son of the Highest was “the power of the Highest.”
“And the angel answered and said unto her, The ‘HOLY GHOST’ shall come upon thee, and ‘THE POWER OF THE HIGHEST’ shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called ‘THE SON OF GOD.’” (Luke 1:35)
Mary conceived the “child of the Holy Ghost,” which Luke said was the “power of the Highest,” and that “Highest” was the Father in personality; therefore, if heeded, this would remove the dilemma in the prayer when God is addressed as our “Father” which art in Heaven” because we now know who He is without confusing Him with the “Holy Ghost” in the doctrine of the Trinity brings.
But the fact is that most Trinitarians do have the “Father” in the Trinity in mind when they pray, and not the “Holy Ghost,” but some preachers are also teaching and leading their congregation to pray to the “Holy Ghost” due to their belief in the Trinity, and the members are obliged to follow.
But the “Holy Ghost” is NOT God in the Highest, but the “power of the Highest.” Paul described it as the “eternal power” (Romans 1:20), which is “dýnamis” in Greek. It is the same word that Luke used in Acts 1:8 for the word “power,” which was the “Holy Ghost” that came from the “Father.”
“And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, BUT WAIT FOR THE PROMISE OF THE ‘FATHER,’ which, saith he, ye have heard of me.” (Acts 1:4)
“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.”
“Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and HAVING RECEIVED OF THE ‘FATHER’ THE PROMISE OF THE ‘HOLY GHOST,’ he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.” (Acts 2:33)
That “eternal power” or the “Holy Ghost” of the Father is all of the divine attributes of God. Jesus called it “…the ‘Comforter,’ or the ‘Spirit of truth,’ ‘which proceedeth from the ‘Father’…” (John 15:26) because the “Father” is the “…God of all comfort” (2 Cor. 1:3) and the “God of truth” (See Deut. 32:4-6). His Spirit is described as “holy,” which would make the “Father” a holy God (See John 17:11).
The “Father” is the Creator of all things created by sending forth His Spirit through Christ (See Psalms 104:30; Eph. 3:9); therefore, the Spirit of the “Father” is His omnipotence.
It is also His omniscience because “…what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? ‘even so’ the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God” (1 Cor. 2:11), and “…his understanding is infinite” (Psalms 147:5).
The Spirit is also His omnipresence (See Psalms 139:7). The Spirit of the Father is the very element of who He is as a divine Person, and He is able to send forth His Spirit everywhere as though He Himself were physically there.
The Bible also teaches us that the Spirit of the Father is His breath of life.
“THE SPIRIT OF GOD hath made me, and THE BREATH OF THE ALMIGHTY hath given me life” (Job 33:4)
“All the while my breath is in me, and THE SPIRIT OF GOD IS IN MY NOSTRILS.” (Job 27:3)
“And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, AND BREATHED INTO HIS NOSTRILS ‘THE BREATH OF LIFE;’ and man became a living soul.” (Gen. 2:7)
And we are told that the Father has “GIVEN TO THE SON TO HAVE LIFE IN HIMSELF” (John 5:26); therefore, “…it pleased the Father that in…” Christ “…should all fulness dwell,” which is “…all the fulness of the Godhead bodily” (Col. 1:19; 2:9).
This means that the Father gave all the fulness of His Spirit of life to His Son; hence, Paul wrote that Christ is “…the express image of HIS [Father’s] PERSON…” (Heb. 1:3) [insert mine] because the Spirit is the very element of the Personhood of Him whose Spirit it is; otherwise, Paul could not have written what he wrote.
This makes Christ equally divine with His Father (See Phil. 2:6), which means that He has all the fulness of the divine attributes; therefore He too can be omnipresent by sending His Holy Spirit to whom ever and wherever He pleases.
The Spirit of Christ is His essence as a Person just as it is with any person whether it be God, the angels, or mankind. The spirit in us is the essence of our personhood because we are all known by our own spirit whether we are evil or holy, but in our case, our spirit is evil because of our fallen nature; however, God is holy (See John 17:11) because He has a “Holy Spirit” within Him, and no evil dwells in Him (See Psalms 5:4). His Son was incarnated as a Holy Child (See Luke 1:35) because Mary was overshadowed by the “Holy Ghost” of the Father, and Christ maintained His holiness by not sinning even in the least (See Heb. 4:15); therefore, produced a holy life as a man, which He could impute to all His believers by His Spirit (See 2 Thes. 2:13; 1 Pet. 1:2).
Paul said that Christ lived in him (Gal. 2:20), which means that the Spirit of Christ dwelt in him, and because of this, he said that he lived “by the faith of the Son of God” (ibid), which was a life that pleased God. Why? Because Jesus said that He did always those things that pleased His Father (See John 8:29), but “without faith it is impossible to please Him (Heb. 11:6); therefore, the “faith of Jesus” is the holiness of His life.
So how can you and I become holy like Christ? We need to have Him also live in us by His Holy Spirit.
Is the Holy Spirit of Christ a Person? It must be a Person because it is the very essence of the Personhood of Christ that Represents Christ to His people (See John 14:26; 15:26; 16:13-15).
Christ manifests Himself to us by His Spirit, which is the essence of all the divine qualities that constitute a divine Person, BUT IN A SPIRITUAL SENSE. This is why Jesus used the personal pronoun “He” for His Spirit in those verses above.
Therefore, His Spirit can love (Romans 15:30) for He whose Spirit it is originally is love (1 John 4:8), and He gave His Spirit to His Son (Acts 2:33); therefore, “…the Lord is that Spirit” (2 Cor. 3:17), and He loves you.
“9 Now if any man have not THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST, he is none of his. 10 And if CHRIST BE IN YOU, the body is dead because of sin; BUT THE SPIRIT IS LIFE BECAUSE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS.” (Romans 8:9,10)
And we “…are changed into the same image from glory to glory, ‘even as by the Spirit of the LORD’” (2 Cor. 3:18).
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