- Parent Category: Bible Reference
- Category: What the Bible Teaches - R.A. TORREY
- Published on Tuesday, 22 May 2007 01:18
5. THE NAMES OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
1 Corinthians 2:10, R.V. — "But unto us God revealed them through the Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God." "The Spirit.' The word means "breath" or "wind." Both thoughts are in the word as applied to the Holy Spirit. ( John 20:22 — "And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost." Genesis 2:7 — "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.") Compare <19A430> Psalm 104:30 — "Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth," and Job 33:4 "The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life." Taken together, these passages show the idea of the Spirit as the breath of Christ and of God.
In John 3:6-8 ("That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit"), we have the idea of the Spirit as the wind. The full significance of this name as applied to the Holy Spirit may be beyond us to fathom, but this much seems clear: 1. The Spirit is the outbreathing of God, His life going forth to quicken.
Possibly we should note the fact that the breath is itself the vital principle, and some have thought that the Spirit is therefore the inmost life of God. 2. The Spirit, like the wind, is: Sovereign. "Bloweth where it listeth" ( John 3:8). (Compare Corinthians 12:11 — "But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.") Invisible. "Thou hearest the sound thereof' ( John 3:8).
Inscrutable. "Thou knowest not whence it cometh and whither it goeth" ( John 3:8).
Indispensable. Without air in motion there is not life. ( John 3:5 — "Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.") Lifegiving. Ezekiel 37:8-10 — "And when I beheld, lo, the sinews and the flesh came up upon them, and the skin covered them above: but there was no breath in them. Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord God; Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live. So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army." (Compare John 3:5.)
Much at least of the difficulty in John 3:5 would disappear if we would remember that "spirit" means "wind" and translate literally "Except a man be born of water and wind, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God" (i.e., except a man be born of the cleansing and quickening power of the Spirit or of the cleansing word — Compare John 15:3, Ephesians 5:26, James 1:18, 1 Peter 1:23).
Irresistible. (Compare Acts 1:8 — "But ye shall receive power, after that he Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth," and Acts 6:10 — "And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.") A man filled with the Holy Ghost is transformed into a cyclone. 1 Corinthians 3:16 — "Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?" "The Spirit of God.' This name includes the same essential thought as the former, but emphasizes His divine origin, character and power. Isaiah 11:2 — "And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD." (Compare Isaiah 63:14.) "The Spirit of Jehovah." Isaiah 61:1 — "The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound." "The Spirit of the Lord God," or rather "Lord Jehovah." This is still more emphatic. 2 Corinthians 3:3 — "Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshly tables of the heart." "The Spirit of the Living God.' Romans 8:9 — "But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his." "The Spirit of Christ.' This name brings out the relation of the Spirit to Christ as well as to the Father. (Compare to Acts 2:33 — "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.") Galatians 4:6 — "And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts crying, Abba, Father." "The Spirit of His Son.' This name is given to the Holy Spirit in especial connection with His testifying to the sonship of the believer. It is "the Spirit of His Son" who testifies to our sonship. Philippians 1:19 — "For I know that this shall turn to my salvation through your prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ." "The Spirit of Jesus Christ.' The Spirit is not merely the spirit of the eternal word, but the spirit of the word incarnate, Jesus Christ. It is the man Jesus exalted to the right hand of the Father who receives and sends the Spirit. Acts 2:32-33 — "This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. 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 16:7 R.V. — "And when they were come over against Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: and the Spirit of Jesus suffered them not." (Compare to verse 6 — -"And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden of the Holy Ghost to speak the word in Asia.") "The Spirit of Jesus." The relation of the Spirit to the man Jesus is still more clear here. Luke 11:13 — -"If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children; how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?" "The Holy Spirit." This name emphasizes the essential moral character of the Spirit. He is holy in Himself. He imparts holiness to others. (Compare to 1 Peter 1:2.) Oh that we, as the seraphim, would bow in His presence and cry, "Holy, Holy, Holy." Yet how thoughtlessly many talk about Him. We pray for Him to come into our churches and our hearts, but what will He find there? Isaiah 4:4 "When the LORD shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning." "The Spirit of Burning." This name emphasizes His searching, refining, dross-consuming, illuminating, and energizing work. Romans 1:4 "And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. "The Spirit of Holiness.' This name may emphasize His holiness even more than "the Holy Spirit." Ephesians 1:13 R.V.I"In whom ye also, having heard the word of' truth, the gospel of your salvation, in whom, having also believed, ye were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise." "The Holy Spirit of Promise.' This name refers to His being the great promise of the Father and the Son. (Compare to Acts 1:4-5 — "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. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence." Acts 2:33 — -"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.") John 14:17 — "Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you." John 15:26 — "But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me." John 16:13 — "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come." "The Spirit of Truth.' His essence is truth (Compare to 1 John 5:7 RV — "And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is the truth.") It is His work to communicate truth. (Compare to John 14:26; 16:13.) All truth is from Him. Romans 8:2 — "For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. "The Spirit of Life.' Isaiah 11:2 — "And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD. "The Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding,' "The Spirit of Counsel and Might, ' "The Spirit of Knowledge and of the Fear of the Lord.' All these suggestive names refer to the gracious work of the Spirit in "the servant of the Lord." Hebrews 1:9 — "Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, that anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows." "The Oil of Gladness.' A beautiful and suggestive name for Him whose fruit is first "love," then “joy" ( Galatians 5:22). Hebrews 10:29 — "Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?" "The Spirit of Grace.' This name brings out the fact that it is the Holy Spirit's work to administer and to apply the grace of God. Not only is He gracious, but He is making ours, experientially, the multifold grace of God. 1 Peter 4:14 "If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the Spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified." "The Spirit of Glory." This name is intended to teach not only that He is glorious Himself, but that He imparts the glory of God to us. (Compare verse 13 — -"But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy," and Romans 8:16-17 — "The Spirit himself beareth witness with our spirits, that we are the children of God: and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.") The Holy Spirit is the administrator of glory and grace, or rather of a grace that culminates in glory. (Compare to Ephesians 3:16-19 — "That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.") Hebrews 9:14 "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" "The Eternal Spirit. ' John 14:26 — -"But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." John 15:26 — -"But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me." (See also John 16:7.) "The Comforter." The word translated "Comforter" means far more than just that. It means literally "one called to another's side," the idea being one is at hand to take another's part. It is the same word translated "advocate" in 1 John 2:1 ("My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous"). The thought is that the Holy Spirit is one who is called to our side, one who is ever ready "to stand by us," to take our part. It is a wonderfully tender name for this Holy One.