Prof. Thomas Biro
March, 25 2015
Biblical Theology Paper
Can you see the wind? So how do we know something exists without seeing it? We know that there is wind because we see the leaves crunch as they blow across the yard. We see dirt and dust blow across the road in front of us while we sit in our cars. You can feel how cold or warm it is outside when the wind hits your face. We can smell the aroma of a freshly fallen rain. I know that the wind exists even though I can’t see it and I know that the Holy Spirit exists too. “The Holy Spirit is understood by Christians as the divine agent who brings about the trans-creation” (Richardson 262). In this paper, I am going to talk about what the Holy Spirit is, why the Holy Spirit is important, and what the Holy Spirit can do for us.
As I was researching for this paper I found that I had to be really careful when typing in the search engine, “Holy Spirit.” I had to be careful because you can’t just go with what people think the Holy Spirit is. The first thing that popped up after performing the search was the definition of Holy Spirit. A lot of the on-line dictionary hosts like Merriam-Webster gave a safe answer for the definition of the Holy Spirit, “the third person of the Christian Trinity.” I believe that the Holy Spirit is so much more than that. I believe that believers receive the power of the Holy Spirit as soon as they ask for forgiveness and repent from their old ways. The Holy Spirit helps guide us away from the bad things in life and help lead His people towards God’s will. There’s more to the Holy Spirit than with the interpretation of tongues. You may go your whole life without speaking in tongues. God uses the Holy Spirit to communicate with His believers. The Holy Spirit lays conviction on the hearts of His believers, the Holy Spirit helps with biblical interpretation, the Holy Spirit gives us words to say, and more. The Bible says, “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord's people” (NIV Ephesians 6:18).
The term “Holy Spirit" comes from the Hebrew words ruah and qodes. The Old Testament uses the term “Holt Spirit” (ruah qados) only three times (Psalm 51:11, Isaiah 63:10 & 11) and there are some 90 instances of the term used in the New Testament (Alexander 551). This is an example of how the New Testament fulfills the prophecy from the Old Testament. I looked up the Hebrew meaning of ruah qodes in a NIV exhaustive concordance to break down the root meaning of the term Holy Spirit. Ruah (Spirit) means the immaterial part of a person that can respond to God and qodes (Holy) means something sacred or set apart as dedicated to God (Goodrick 1488).
Having the Holy Spirit doesn’t mean that the Spirit is all we need. I read an illustration in one of my texts books that paints the picture of what I’m talking about. Think about a toddler trying to learn how to walk. The people that the little kid wants around the most is more than likely their mom or dad. Usually the parents will sit a few feet apart facing each other, and one parent will point their child in the way to walk and the other parent would send their child back. After a week or so goes by the child gets the hang of walking and begins to walk on his or her own. But, what if the child thought that since the parents are here that they wouldn’t have to do anything except catch their child every time he or she fell. The child would then think with mom and dad close by, walking would come automatically. This illustration is the same thing as if a believer would say, “Since I am a Christian, the Holy Spirit is with me and I don’t have to read my Bible because the interpretation will come naturally to me” (Duvall 229). The Holy Spirit expects us to use our minds and with proper interpretive methods and with having good study habits will help us interpret the Bible more accurately.