HOME   People do good because they are human, not because they are religious! 

Do not give God any credit for the good they do, they did it!

 

THE HOLY SPIRIT IS NOT GOD
 
Christianity teaches that there is God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit and these three are one God. The Bible does not teach that the Holy Spirit is God. 
 
If the Holy Spirit is not a person then he is not almighty God for God is a partless infinite personal being. That means there is nothing impersonal in him for he is unlimited personality.

The Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Christadelphians teach that the Holy Spirit is not a person but a power.

They argue that since Acts 8 says that Simon Magus tried to buy the power to give the Holy Spirit from the apostles and Peter told him off for trying to buy the gift of God that the Holy Spirit must be just a gift and not a person. But persons can be gifts. Grace signifies not God giving us a free gift but God giving us himself.

The Holy Spirit is quoted in Acts 13:2 and Hebrews 3:7. But an impersonal force can speak.

Romans 8:27 tells us that the Holy Spirit is a mind, therefore a person. But many believed animals had minds and were yet impersonal.

The Bible is thought to indicate that the Holy Spirit is a person for he can be saddened (Ephesians 4:30). But whether the Spirit is personal or not he can’t have feelings for he is immaterial according to Christian theology and even if he is material he will not allow himself to feel pain so this is only analogical. A spirit can work against sin and have no feelings about it or any attitude towards it.

The Spirit is a person in John 14 and 16:13. Some say that this is personification because elsewhere in the Bible the Holy Spirit is described as a power. But he can be a person and a power at the same time. God is a power who can only be described as a personal being because we cannot describe him accurately when he is beyond understanding. Jesus did not call the Holy Spirit a power at Luke 24:49 despite what some books say. He only said power from on high would come. Romans 15:13 speaks of the power of the Holy Spirit. It would not be speaking of the power of a power but of the power of a person. Jesus said that the Holy Spirit can speak (Mark 13:9,11). A power cannot speak. A person can only speak through it.

Moreover, the Holy Spirit can will (Acts 13:2; 1 Corinthians 12:11), can understand our problems (Romans 8:27).

It is said that God is localised in Heaven according to the Bible while the Holy Spirit is everywhere. If correct then this would prove either that the Spirit is a power or a person greater than the Father for it can be everywhere unlike him. The latter is absurd for it implies that God is imperfect – and, of course, the Bible is against it. But when the Bible says that God lives in Heaven it does not say that he is only there. Moreover, Heaven is never said to be a place but where God is which is everywhere.

In the beautiful Jehovah’s Witness book, You Can Live Forever in Paradise on Earth, it is declared that the Holy Spirit cannot be a person when it was able to indwell lots of people at the same time on the day of Pentecost. But it is possible that a spiritual being may be able to concentrate on many things at a time for it is not like anything we understand. The Bible says that the Father is in his people and it regards him as personal.

The Spirit might be a person but is he God?

Psalm 104:30 says that God sends forth his spirit and creation happens and the ends of the earth are renewed. But God could create through his holy spirit power or even an angel without the power or angel being God.
  
Acts (5:3,4) seems to say that the Holy Spirit is God. To lie to the Holy Spirit is to lie to God. But to lie to anybody is to lie to God for God said that whoever does wrong to a person does wrong to him and this would be even more true and serious if you lied to God’s magical force, his telephone line. Maybe the Spirit was like his telephone line.

Some think that Jesus said that the Holy Spirit was superior to him. Jesus said that it is worse to insult the Holy Spirit than to insult him although he is at the right hand of God. Christians comment, “If Jesus is the greatest creature and the Spirit is greater then the Spirit must be God.” But Jesus gave external revelation while the Spirit worked within a person to make them believe it. Jesus may have been at God’s right hand but the Spirit’s teaching role was most important even if the Spirit was an inferior. Jesus could tell the Spirit what to do and still be inferior to the spirit in might in the sense that the Spirit holds the power but Jesus could still be the boss at the right hand of God.

Hebrews 9:14 says that the Spirit of Jesus is eternal but makes a distinction between the Spirit and God. If the Trinity were believed it would be a distinction between the Spirit and the Father. But it seems the Spirit here is not the Holy Spirit as the Amplified Bible shows. “Christ, Who by virtue of [His] eternal Spirit [his own pre-existent divine personality] has offered Himself as an unblemished sacrifice to God.” Jesus spiritually went up to Heaven where there is no time like Paul allegedly did. Once you go into eternity you are eternal. Jesus would have been eternal if he did have an origin in time, even if he was not the eternal God.

Comparing texts that say that God did something or said something with those texts that attribute them to the Holy Spirit (eg. Isaiah 6:8-10 with Acts 28:25-27) to present them as evidence for the deity of the Holy Spirit is futile. God can do things through a non-divine Holy Spirit. It is just as true to say that God did it as it is to substitute the Holy Spirit for God here. God could have given the Holy Spirit the power he has so in a sense God does and hears and sees whatever the Spirit does and hears and sees.

The original Greek of Jesus’ promise to send the Spirit in John infers that this messenger is another of the same kind as himself (page 57, 398, The New Cults). He used the Greek word allos for another which means another of the same nature. Christians base an argument for the deity and personality of the Spirit on this. But Jesus is talking about a messenger and a comforter. He would have meant that the Spirit would have been like him in these respects exclusively. When somebody says, “He is the same as me,” the meaning of this depends on the context. And since the context does not mention the deity of Jesus it is no proof for the deity of the Holy Spirit. Some say that Jesus did mean the Spirit was divine and personal for Jesus was not a messenger or comforter so it was the nature he was referring to and not the roles. He was a comforter for his message was the gospel or good news and he sought to heal. And he was a messenger of God. Jesus was not referring to the nature for the Spirit was unlike him in that it did not come in human form.

Jesus said that what he did he did on the command of the Father and said only what he was commanded to say (John 14:31). The Church says that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are equal. One then cannot command the other for each person is God. So the Church says that Jesus only means that though he is God, he is also man and the man nature is what is commanded by God. But Jesus as man is still one person with God so that explanation makes no sense and is really splitting him into two persons. Jesus cannot be God when he is commanded or if he is then he is not equal to the Father. However, inequality in God makes no sense. Jesus said that like himself the Holy Spirit is commanded by the Father to reveal what he reveals (John 16:13) and will not speak on his own authority but with that of the Father. The Holy Spirit like the Father is not man, only the Son is according to Catholic teaching. So they cannot use the excuse they use for the Son being commanded that they use for the Son being commanded. Clearly, the Father is the boss and the Son and the Holy Spirit obey him. To obey means to carry out the orders of somebody that knows better or who has authority over you. Catholic teaching on the equality of the Trinity flies in the face of scripture.

 

There is more.  Jesus says in John 15 that all the Spirit says is learned from the Father and Jesus. He leads you to the truth for he does not speak for himself.  So he has no authority of his own to speak so he cannot be God.
 
Jesus called the Holy Spirit the comforter or Paraclete.

When the word for comforter which is parakletos means one who is called to help the defendant in a court of law it is hard to deny the personality of the Holy Spirit. Jesus would have been very clear if the comforter was not a person for the term comforter gives the impression that it is.

Jesus said we must be baptised in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. If so then the Holy Spirit must be as personal as the first two. You don’t say, “I admit you to this room in the name of John and Mary and their power”. When you say John and Mary that is enough to indicate that their power agrees with the admission.
 
The Christians believe that the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit are three equal persons and they are similar and infinite in glory and majesty. But what about the idea that only the Father is this kind of person? What about the idea that the Son is just the humanity and soul of Jesus? Perhaps Jesus is just the incarnation of the Father? Perhaps the Father made a Spirit being and this being is an angel and to be identified with the Holy Spirit? Perhaps the Father is this being in the same way as he is the Son? This would be a different concept of the Trinity. It presupposes that the Son and the Spirit might not know all or may not even feel that they are God. This allows for more of a relationship to happen between them than the traditional trinity does. It could be said that when Jesus being God prayed to God he was declaring that though he was the same person as God the incarnation made them appear separate enough to facilitate a relationship.
 
CONCLUSION
 
The Christian doctrine that the Holy Spirit is God, is wholly unsupported by the Bible.
 
BOOKS CONSULTED

A CALL TO HERESY, Robert Van de Weyer, Lamp Press, London, 1989
ALLEGED DISCREPANCIES OF THE BIBLE, John W Haley, Whitaker House, Pennsylvania, undated
ASKING THEM QUESTIONS, Various, Oxford University Press, London, 1936
CHRIST IS GOD, Rev JP Arendzen DD, Augustine Publishing Company, Devon, 1987
CHRIST OUR LIGHT, J Buys SJ Geoffrey Chapman and Gill & Son, London-Melbourne, Dublin 1966
CHRISTIANITY FOR THE TOUGH-MINDED Ed John Warwick Montgomery, Bethany Fellowship Inc, Minneapolis, 1973
CTS EXPLANATIONS, Jehovah’s Witnesses, by John Wijngaards, Catholic Truth Society, London, 1998
DID JESUS CHRIST REALLY COME DOWN FROM HEAVEN? Alan Hayward, Christadelphian ALS, Birmingham
DO CHRISTIANS BELIEVE IN THREE GODS? Radio Bible Class, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1992
EVIDENCE THAT DEMANDS A VERDICT, Vol 1, Josh McDowell, Alpha, Scripture Press Foundation, Bucks, 1995
FOUR GREAT HERESIES, John R Rice, Sword of the Lord, Murfreesboro, Tennessee, 1975
GOD A GUIDE FOR THE PERPLEXED Keith Ward, OneWorld, Oxford, 2003
GOD AND THE HUMAN CONDITION, F J Sheed, Sheed & Ward, London 1967
HANDBOOK OF CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS, Peter Kreeft & Ronald Tacelli, Monarch, East Sussex, 1994
HONEST TO GOD, John AT Robinson, SCM Press, London, 1963
JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES John Wijngaards, Catholic Truth Society, London, 1998
JESUS AND EARLY CHRISTIANITY IN THE GOSPELS, Daniel J Grolin, George Ronald, Oxford, 2002
JESUS GOD THE SON OR SON OF GOD? Fred Pearce Christadelphian Publishing Office, Birmingham
MERE CHRISTIANITY, CS Lewis, Fontana, Glasgow, 1975
MIRACLES, CS Lewis, Fontana, London, 1960
PATRIARCHAL AND MOSAIC RELIGION, Studies in Comparative Religion, Rt Rev Mgr John M T Barton, DD, FSA, Catholic Truth Society, London, 1962
PRIESTLAND’S PROGRESS, Gerald Priestland, BBC, London, 1981
SCIENCE AND THE BIBLE, Henry Morris, Moody Press, Bucks, 1988
SET MY EXILES FREE, John Power, Logos Books, MH Gill & Son Ltd, Dublin, 1967
SOME MODERN FAITHS, Maurice C Burrell and J Stafford Wright, Intervarsity Press, Leicestershire, 1988
THE CASE FOR CHRIST, Lee Strobel, HarperCollins and Zondervan, Michigan, 1998
THE EARLY CHURCH, Henry Chadwick, Pelican, Middlesex, 1987
THE GODHEAD EXPLAINED, Christadelphian Press, Beverley, South Australia
THE METAPHOR OF GOD INCARNATE, John Hick, SCM Press, London, 1993
THE MYTH OF GOD INCARNATE, John Hick ed., SCM Press, London, 1977
THE NEW CULTS, Walter Martin, Vision House, Santa Ana, California, 1980
THE SPIRIT OF GOD, John Bedson, Lightstand Burbank CA 1984
THE UNAUTHORISED VERSION, Robin Lane Fox, Penguin Books, Middlesex, 1992
UNDERSTANDING THE CULTS, Josh McDowell and Don Stewart, Campus Crusade for Christ, San Bernardino, 1983
UNITARIAN CHRISTIANITY AND OTHER ESSAYS, William Ellery Channing, The Bobs-Merrill Company Inc, Kansas, 1957
WHEN CRITICS ASK, Norman Geisler and Thomas Howe, Victor Books, Illinois ,1992
YOU CAN LIVE FOREVER IN PARADISE ON EARTH, Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, New York, 1982