What are your thoughts about the Holy Spirit? How important is he to you? Do you know him personally? The reason I ask is because I believe our relationship with him is the most important relationship we will have on the earth. Our relationship with him changes the way we walk with God.
So, let's talk about the Holy Spirit.
When Jesus was baptised by John the Baptist, the Holy Spirit came upon him in a bodily shape like a dove. When people hear of this and I'm sure you have, they often compare the Holy Spirit to a dove, but the dove was symbolic just like Jesus being the bread of life. The Holy Spirit is no more a dove then Jesus is a piece of bread. Let's look at this scripture:
"And the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased." (Luke chapter 3 verse 22)
As a person
The Holy Spirit has a bodily form, he is a person, I don't mean he is a human being, I mean he has a will, he has emotions and he has a mind. When we know this in our hearts it will help in our intimacy with him. We no longer relate to him as being like a dove, we talk to him as if he was a person.
"And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice." (Ephesians chapter 4 verse 30-31)
This scripture says that we can grieve the Holy Spirit, the word grieve means to distress, to cause grief, to be in heaviness, to be sorrowful. Only a person with emotions can be grieved. The scripture continues to talk about some actions and attitudes that grieve him.
One that really sticks out to me is our words. If the Holy Spirit is in us and never leaves us that means he hears everything we say and sees everything we do. Oh, how the knowledge of that can change the way we walk. Out of respect and awe for him we no longer want to do things that hurt him, like speaking or even thinking negatively about other people.
You may ask why is this important?
Your relationship with the Holy Spirit changes when you realize he is like a real person. He is no longer this impersonal force but starts to become as real as the air we breathe. We start to talk to him like we would a friend. We start to spend time with him like we would in any relationship.
One of the problems in my own walk has been a lack of intimacy with the Holy Spirit. I heard about him in the last few years, but I didn't know him personally. Until recently I didn't realise how important our relationship with the Holy Spirit is. I know I'm not alone in this.
Imagine having a friend with you that never left you. He wants to help you, he wants to comfort you when you're down, he wants to lead you to the truth, he wants to show you who you are and whose you are. But the problem is we often don't even know he is there, we go through life doing it on our own. We don't need to though, Jesus has sent the greatest helper there is, better than any man. This is the most beautiful relationship there is, he is so good words can't explain how good he is.
The Holy Spirit is so important that Jesus said this about him:
"Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you."(John chapter 16 verse 7)
Think about this, Jesus said it is expedient for us that he goes away so he can send the Holy Spirit to us. The word expedient refers to being an advantage, so it was for our good that Jesus went away and sent the Holy Spirit. When Jesus was here on the earth, he was in one physical location at a time with one group of people at a time whereas the Holy Spirit is everywhere in all his sons and daughters. How awesome is that and how blessed are we!
The Holy Spirit is not less important than God and he is no less important then Jesus. He is in the trinity; he is equal with God, he is equal with Jesus. In a Western mindset we often see a hierarchy, there's number one in charge, then number two, then number three. The trinity is different, they are all equal. It is more like one equals one equals one, which then equals three in one (I'm no mathematician and this is not a formula for the trinity).
So, we need to stop looking at the Holy Spirit as if he is lesser then God because he is God's spirit. Imagine if you were treating a king like a commoner, that is how we often treat the Holy Spirit and it offends him when we don't give him reverence. I speak from conviction through my own experience so no judgement.
When we receive the Holy Spirit he comes to dwell inside of us. We are the temple of the Holy Spirit, he lives inside of us and he isn't going anywhere. It's time we started to steward our relationship with him like we would a person. It's time we acknowledged him and give him the rightful place in our lives and in our churches.
"Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own." (1 Corinthians chapter 6 verse 19)
Courtesy of Press Service International