Keith Hunt - Just What Is the Holy Spirit? - Page Three   Restitution of All Things

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Just WHAT IS the Holy Spirit?

The Majority CAN be Wrong!

Continuing with the old study paper from the old Ambassador
College



JUST WHAT IS THE HOLY SPIRIT?

What does it do and how do you get it? The Holy Spirit, according
to the organised religions of this world, is the third person in
the Godhead. BUT IS THAT TRUE?


     MORE than a billion PEOPLE - nearly ONE-THIRD of the antire
population of the world - believe in the doctrine of the
Trinity. It is one of the few MAJOR doctrines upon which
virtually all professing Christendom, Protestant and Catholic
alike, basically agree.

Nebulous Foundation. 

     The belief in the Trinity is often said to be the heart and
core - "the CENTRAL doctrine of the Christian religion" (The 
Catholic Encyclopedia, article "Trinity'). It is the one point of
doctrine where there is the most agreement. Yet in spite of the
great universal agreement, it is still one of the most
DIFFICULT-TO-EXPLAIN doctrines of professing Christianity.

     World-renowned  evangelists have been quoted as saying that 
the Holy Spirit, the supposed third person of the godhead, "is
not easy to explain in non-theological terms." Or, "In actuality,
the doctrine of the trinity is a MYSTERY."  No one can possibly
understand the "three in one." When pointedly questioned
concerning the belief in a Triune or three-in-one God, the answer
is in effect - WHO KNOWS? It is something we must
accept in faith.  "The mind of man cannot fully understand the
mystery of the Trinity. He who would try to understand the
mystery fully will lose his mind. But he who would deny the
Trinity will lose his soul" (Harold Lindsell and Charles J.
Woodbridge "A Handbook of Christian Truth, pp.51-52).

No Mystery to the Apostles. 

     The Bible speaks of the plan of salvation as being a mystery
(Greek "muster-ion," meaning something now revealed that was
previously unknown). But that doesn't mean that God's truths are
a MYSTERY to those whom He is calling to salvation. Open your
Bible to Mark 4:11. Jesus Christ of Nazareth, one of the very
members of the Godhead, is here speaking to His disciples. He has
just given the multitude the parable of the sower and the seed,
and after the multitude left, His disciples came to Him for the
interpretation of the parable. "And he said unto them, Unto you
it is given TO KNOW the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto
them that are without, all these things are done in parables:
That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may
hear, and not understand, lest at any time they should be
converted, and their sins should be forgiven them."

     Jesus Christ is plainly, clearly and pointedly showing that
the truths of God, the doctrines of salvation or the very words
of life are a mystery TO THOSE WHO ARE NOT BEING CALLED. Only
those who are His very own disciples are privileged TO KNOW THE
MYSTERY OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD. His truth, His way and His
teachings aren't "mysterious, hard-to-define, etc." to His
people. He only spoke in clouded, ambiguous terms to the
unconverted.

     The same applies today!

     Jesus Christ never at any time in any way thought, hinted or
alluded to the Holy Spirit as a third person in the Godhead.
There is absolutely no basis or PROOF whatsoever in the Bible for
the worldwide acceptance of the teaching of the Trinity. Even the
erudite writers of the Catholic Encyclopedia must confess that:

"the passages which can be cited ... as attesting to His [the
Holy Spirit's] distinct personality are few" (ibid.). 

     Should you just accept "in faith" - one of the most
important beliefs in Christianity? Christians are commanded to,
"Prove ALL things..." (1 Thess.5:21). Universal acceptance or
reasonability ARE NOT PROOFS of any doctrine. GOD'S WORD, the
Bible, is the test of any doctrinal truth - not what MEN say,
think or believe. Jesus Christ said, "... Thy word is TRUTH"
(John 17:17). He also said in another place, "The word - that I
[Jesus] have spoken, the same shall judge him [you] in the last
day" (John 12:48).

What Do You Mean-Trinity? 

     "The Trinity is ... the truth that in the unity of the
Godhead there are three persons, the Father, the Son, the Holy
Spirit ... The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit
is God, and yet these are not three Gods, but one God ...
co-eternal and co-equal: all alike or uncreated and omnipotent"
(The Catholic Encyclopedia, article "Trinity").

     That is a pretty positive statement. Where is their
authority to back it up?
     One source often referred to by Catholic and Protestant
alike is the old stand-by-TRADITION. Ancient writers and "early
Church fathers" are quoted, often misquoted, to show that for
centuries this doctrine has been taught. But not all professing
Christians believed it.

     Let the record sneak for itself:

"We cannot doubt the existence among orthodox Fathers of
different opinions on this mysterious subject until its final
definition by the Church" ("Trinity," Dictionary of Doctrinal and
Historical Theology).    
     An interesting aspect which is often blatantly overlooked is
that many of those to whom they now refer as believing in the
"blessed Trinity," were anathematized for their beliefs. They
were considered heretics in their day and completely
disfellowshiped because of their heretical beliefs. It wasn't
until the Council of Chalcedon, in 451 A.D., that the doctrine of
the Trinity finally and permanently became the official formula
of Catholic orthodoxy.

     But the story began a great deal earlier.

     The as yet unformed germ of the Trinity idea may be found in
such early Christian "Fathers" as Clement of Alexandria, Origen,
Tertullian and Ireanaeus - about two hundred years after Christ.
But the idea of triune gods was not new. The ancient pagans were
quite familiar with triads or trinities of gods, and it is
possible, indeed likely, that pagan thought would have had some
influence on the developing doctrine of the church.
     The first official standing of the Trinity doctrine was
given in the decrees of the great Council of Nicaea in A.D.325.
     This council was called together by the Roman Emperor,
Constantine the Great, who saw in the church a coveted pillar of
stability for his rule, and that of His descendants. But seeking
to achieve that state of stability, he insisted that all
Christians should agree on and subscribe to a common unified
belief, including of course a common view of the nature of God.
It was the formulation for the Trinity of Athanasius, an Egyptian
deacon from Alexandria that was adopted by the council.

"The Alexandrian catechetical school, which revered Clement of
Alexandria and Origen, the greatest theologians of the Greek
Church, as its heads, applied the allegorical method to the
explanation of Scripture. Its thought was influenced by Plato:
its strong point was theological speculation. Athanasius and the
three Cappadocians had been included among its members ...."
("Ecumenical Councils of the Catholic Church," by Hubert Jedin,
p.29).

     Many were opposed to the creed as adopted. They were led by
the priest Arius and others. For Arius standardization soon led
to excommunication and banishment. But it was not long before he
was back, with Constantine's backing and favor, and soon it was
Athanasius' turn to be expelled. Constantine himself, of course,
knew little and cared less about the truth of the matter in
dispute.
     The seesaw continued. Athanasius was exiled three or four
times and brought back again. More conferences were held, some
deciding one thing, some another. The one thread that ran
consistently through it all was politics, striving for power, and
strife. And perhaps the real reason that trinitarianism ever
prevailed was simply that the majority were not ready to declare
that Christ was originally a created being, as maintained by
Arius, or merely an ordinary man before being anointed by the
Holy Spirit in the form of a dove, as maintained by others. 
It was not until the Council of Chalcedon at the midpoint of the
fifth century that the trinitarian creed was permanently and
irrevocably rooted in Catholicism. Even so, individuals and
groups have continued to hold differing opinions throughout the
ages ever since.

The Holy Spirit is God's Power. 

     Matthew 28:19-20 is often cited by the advocates of the
Trinity to prove the Holy Spirit is a separate individual.
What this verse actually shows is that when we are baptized, we
are inducted into A FAMILY. When we are baptized into the name of
God, we are simply being baptized into the family of God.
All that is shown by the mentioning of the Holy Spirit in this
verse is that the Holy Spirit also BELONGS TO THE GOD FAMILY. It
is the essence or power of God. And just as the seed of life or
spermatozoon of a man engenders a child and makes that child his,
so God uses His Spirit to engender us, upon baptism, into His
family and make us His begotten children.
     The Holy Spirit then is the power of God which emanates from
God. Since this power belongs to God, it is also found to be with
all His sons, and to be the joining force which makes them a
family.
     The truth of the matter in this verse is positive proof of
the family relationship of God. It has nothing whatsoever to do
with a triune God. 

What the Power of God Can Do. 

     God is power! His power is the Holy Spirit. It is the power
of God or Spirit of God by which all things were created in the
very beginning.

     How can this be? Genesis 1:1 says: "In the beginning GOD
CREATED..." Does that mean that God Himself had to fashion the
whole creation with His own hands? No! God the Father didn't do
the creating personally. Christ was the one who did the actual
creating of all things (John 1:3). This truth is again
demonstrated in Hebrews 1:2. Here it says, referring to Christ,
"by whom also he made the worlds."
     Does this then mean that it was Jesus Christ only who
fashioned all things? Again the answer is no. The word for God in
Genesis 1:1 is Elohim which is plural in form and thus can
signify a plurality or family relationship between the Father and
a Son.
     The God family planned the creation, long before it ever
took place. Each and every detail was carefully thought out. Just
as a contractor will have blueprints drawn up long before he ever
lays the foundation for a large construction job, so the family
of God planned the universe. After all planning was completed
Jesus Christ executed the plans, through the power which is the
Holy Spirit. That doesn't mean that a third party took over and
did the job. It simply means the work was done by the power or
spirit or authority of the God family.

     Take the Panama Canal for example. We say the United States
built the Panama Canal. Did all fortyeight, as it then was, of
the states go down to the Isthmus of Panama and do the work? Of
course not. It was done by the authority and power of the United
States. The men, money and power of the United States caused the
canal to come into being. In that way, the United States did the
job. An exact parallel.

The Holy Spirit Is Omnipresent.

     In both the Greek New Testament and the Hebrew Old
Testament, the words for spirit also mean air, wind, atmosphere.
And like the atmosphere on earth, the power of God is everywhere.
That is how Jesus was able to do all the work of the creation by
Himself. David's prayer in Psalm 139:7-8 shows that he knew God's
Spirit or power was omnipresent. No matter where in the universe
you might go, God's Spirit will still be there. That is how Jesus
Christ is upholding all things by the word of his POWER" (Heb.
1:3). By His authority as God, He keeps all things in the
universe in their place. This work is done through the power of
the God family and with the express consent of the Father.
     Though the Father is SUPREME in the God Family, as witnessed
to by  Christ Himself (John 14:28), Jesus is the administrator of
the Holy Spirit (John 15:26). He is greater than that Spirit.
These two Scriptures alone nullify and make void the supposition
that the Holy Spirit is a person of equal rank with the Falher
and the Son. The Spirit is the very power of God - the agent by
which He does His Will. IT IS NOT ANOTHER PERSON!

It Is a Gift

     This power of God can be yours as a free gift if you will
only meet the preordained requirements. Once you have repented
and been baptized, God gives you the free gift of His Holy Spirit
(Acts 2:38).
     If the Holy Spirit were a person, God is being rather
presumptuous to go around giving a part of that person to
whomever He chooses. Again in speaking about the gift of the
Spirit, God says that in the last days He will pour out His
Spirit, which belongs to Him, upon all mankind (Acts 2:17). The
meaning of the Greek here is to literally pour out as you would
water from a pitcher.
     How can you pour out a person? YOU CAN'T! It is impossible!

What Are Its Functions? 

     We are to learn what God is planning by observing the
happenings here on earth (Rom.1:20). Everywhere we look we can
see each animal, bird, microbe and plant reproducing itself. In
Genesis 1:26, God (Elohim) is quoted as saying: "... Let us make
man in OUR IMAGE ...." God is reproducing Himself! How very plain
that should be to us rational, thinking individuals. We humans
ARE TO BE MADE IN THE VERY IMAGE OF GOD! We are to become "Gods"
ourselves.

     The Spirit of God, the Holy Spirit, unites with our minds
and we are BEGOTTEN AGAIN - this time spiritually as we were once
begotten physically. Read it in your own Bible.

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which
according to his abundant mercy bath BEGOTTEN us AGAIN unto a
lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (I
Pet. 1:3). In verse 23, it says, "Being BEGOTTEN AGAIN, not of
corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which
liveth and abideth for ever" (Panin translation).

     The Holy Spirit impregnates us with the God nature. That
spiritual begettal imbues us with the nature and mind of God.
Throughout our Christian lives we continue to grow and develop in
the understanding and mind of God until we are finally born INTO
the God family and made immortal at the return of Jesus Christ to
this earth (I Cor.15:49-52). We will then rule this earth as
God's sons.

Why the Deception? 

     Why has Satan palmed off the doctrine of the Trinity on the
world? Because he doesn't want YOU to rule in his place. Satan
was originally created to carry out God's rule on earth. He
rebelled and refused to serve the Creator and was cast out of his
position of responsibility (Ezek.28:11-19 and Isa.14:12-14). A
third of the angels united with Lucifer in that rebellion and
were CAST DOWN TO THIS EARTH WITH HIM - having forever DISQUAL-
IFIED themselves and Satan from ruling in the Government of God.
     Since they are disqualified, they don't want anyone else to
take their place... If they can make you believe in the Trinity,
you will be deceived into thinking that the Godhead consists of
only three persons. You would then never in your wildest dreams
ever imagine that YOU were created to be born into the GOD FAMILY
and actually share in ruling the universe.   

     Satan wants you to think that God is a limited Trinity and
not a growing family or Kingdom into which we may enter. If we
look upon the Godhead as being a closed unit, we won't WORK and
STRIVE to qualify for that family. (not that works gets you
salvation, but you do have to set your mind to serve God, to live
according to His will and commandments - Keith Hunt)

     Anyway you want to look at it, the Trinity idea is a false
and inadequate view of God. If anyone wants to say that the
Trinity is merely three aspects or manifestations for one God, he
is taking personhood away from Christ. But if the Holy Spirits a
person, it (or he) could not be placed as the character and the
seed of God into many different human beings to beget and bring
each of them individually to birth as "many sons." And if someone
would argue that this could occur - on the ground that with God
anything is possible - this is actually making the Holy Spirit to
be the Father, which is once more, equivalent to making the Holy
Spirit not a separate person.

     So there you have it. There is the truth about the Holy
Spirit. God's family isn't closed to mankind as Satan would have
you believe.

     It's WIDE OPEN to you, your family and all mankind. If you
accept the truth of God and obey Him, You can be made in the
exact likeness of God at Christ's return. God wants it. THE
Decision is YOURS!  

                               .............

NOTE:

As child growing up my parents sent me to a Church of England
school. From age 6 till finishing High School, the first half
hour of the day was reading the Bible. I heard all of my young
life about God the Father, Jesus as the Son of God, and the Holy
Spirit.
I went faithfully every Sunday to Sunday school. Heard the same
thing, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. BUT not one single person
EVER methodically tried to prove to me or my class, that the Holy
Spirit was a PERSON, separate from the Father and the Son.

It was not until I came to Canada at age 18 and was attending a
Baptist church that I first heard explained to me that the Holy
Spirit was a person, a third person in the Godhead. I literally
laughed and said, "You have to be joking, you mean you actually
believe that the Holy Spirit is a literal third person." They
answered me with "Well....yes!" I replied to them, "I've been
reading my Bible since age 6 and have NEVER thought the Holy
Spirit was a literal third person in the Godhead."

I had read the passages where "he" is used together with the Holy
Spirit, but never thought that language meant the Holy Spirit was
a literal third person. I knew, even as a child, that we in our
language often name "cars" - "boats" - "weather storms" etc. by
names.

In just reading the Bible, I, as a child, could see that the
Godhead was made up of TWO ETERNAL BEINGS - one we call "the
Father" and the other today we call "Jesus Christ."  I had read
the passages of people in the Bible (John in Revelation) seeing
in visions or dreams the throne of God in heaven, and it only
stated there were TWO GOD BEINGS - the Father sits on the throne
and Jesus the Christ is on His right hand.

I had from a young child only thought of the Holy Spirit as the
very NATURE, POWER, FORCE, of those Two Eternal Beings, so they
could work ANYWHERE or EVERYWHERE in the universe at the same
time. Now, that made complete and logical sense to me. And it is
indeed the truth of your Bible, even if the majority of Christian
religion does not believe it! The majority CAN be WRONG! What
else is new. The majority of Christian religion believes a lot of
other things that are wrong!

Keith Hunt


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