The Holy Spirit’s action

Published 11:41 am Saturday, April 7, 2018

by William Sloan

How does Scripture define the Holy Spirit? Moreover, what is His relation to the Father and Son? The Bible is eternally clear that God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The Holy Trinity is one God in three persons, coeternal, coequal and one in substance. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are equally authoritarian and sovereign. Each person in the Holy Trinity is uncreated, as the Godhead, or Trinity is the initial source of all that exists, thus He cannot be created or made. The one God, who is Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is responsible for creation, order, justice and salvation. Holy Scripture defines the Holy Spirit, who convicts, instructs and leads humanity to the saving knowledge of Christ the Messiah, in a lucid and specific manner.

The Holy Spirit has other names in Scripture such as Advocate, Helper and Breath of the Almighty, amongst others (John 14:26; John 15:26; and Job 33:4.) Moreover, the Spirit executes many specific tasks in Scripture, such as conveying knowledge, the fear of God and understanding to the faithful (Isaiah 11:2.)

The Spirit also, in cooperation with the Son, will raise the faithful from the dead when the Lord Jesus returns to purify existence (Romans 8:11.) The Holy Spirit also functioned as the instructor, who authored Holy Scripture by way of the Biblical authors (2 Samuel 23:2; Acts 1:16, 4:8, 4:25, 4:31; Romans 15:4; 2 Timothy 3:16; and 2 Peter 1:20-21.) The Holy Spirit’s instruction was active and detailed for the early Church, to the extent that He forbade Paul to travel to certain areas and commanded him to evangelize others (Acts 16:6 and 28:25.)

The Spirit’s divine and specific instruction is emphasized by Paul as he leads the Corinthians, maintaining that the Holy Spirit will inform them about the danger of false ideals that contradict objective Christian truth (1 Corinthians 12:10.) Moreover, the Spirit will testify on Christ’s behalf, meaning He will emphasize and enforce what the Lord Jesus has articulated (John 15:26.) John’s Gospel emphasizes the eternal dogma that the Holy Spirit will only lead the faithful in a truthful and orthodox manner (John 14:16-17.)

Effectively, the Holy Spirit is not obtuse, nor will He lead the faithful in a non-Biblical manner, as the Godhead is truth and has breathed out Holy Scripture. The Spirit is active and informative now, leading individuals to the saving knowledge of the Messiah and emphasizing Biblical wisdom.

For additional references to the Holy Spirit’s action see Psalm 51:11; Isaiah 63:10-11; Matthew 1:18-20; Matthew 3:11; Matthew 12:32; Romans 5:5; Romans 9:1; Romans 14:17; Romans 15:13-16, 1 Corinthians 12:3; and Ephesians 1:13. Also, reading the Athanasian Creed, which can be found in the United Methodist Hymnal, is constructive and has informed this article.

As a philosophical illustration, consider the example of an earnest student. The student endeavors to learn much and earn high grades. In order to maintain a suitable GPA, the student must excel in all subjects, not just the preferred topic (i.e., biology, geometry or English.) The student is dependent on the knowledge of the science, math and English teachers, all of which share the common goal to effectively teach the student well. If the student excels in biology and becomes slothful as an English student, his GPA invariably suffers. Effectively, to learn well and earn desirable grades, the student must earnestly study each subject and be attentive to the various teachers, each of which is equally important and vital to the student’s learning.

The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are represented by the teachers sharing equal importance and priority. We are represented by the student, who must heed the wisdom of the teachers equally, who represent the persons of the Holy Trinity. Effectively, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are coequal and authoritarian saving and informing the faithful. When the individual studies Scripture, it is vital to be ardently attentive to the specific functions of each divine person in the Godhead, or Trinity. The Holy Spirit is active and informing the faithful in a Biblical manner.

REV. WILL SLOAN is the minister at Grace Memorial United Methodist Church in Sedley. Contact him at