How to know and understand the Holy Spirit | cru (2023)

spiritual development

chelsea knight

  • fruit of the spirit,Filled with the Spirit,holy triad,walk in the spirit

If you want to understand who God is, you must understand what God is. Understanding the difference between God the Father and Jesus is one thing. But many have a hard time understanding what the Holy Spirit is in a way that they can clearly explain it to someone else.

God is one God, but in three persons. This is not an easy idea to handle.

When theologians speak of the Trinity of God, they refer to Him as "Trinity." The Trinity is God the Father, God the Son (Jesus), and God the Holy Spirit.

Understanding who the Holy Spirit is, his place in the Trinity, and the role he plays in everyone's lives is essential for anyone discovering what it means to be a Christian and for anyone trying to follow Jesus.

Knowing the Holy Spirit will radically change your life because He is the way you can experience the life of God within you.

So let's dig into this topic and see how it can transform you.

Here are some shortcuts to specific content sections if you're in a hurry:

  • Who is the Holy Spirit?

  • What does the Holy Spirit do?

  • Where is the Holy Spirit in the Bible?

Who is the Holy Spirit?

How to know and understand the Holy Spirit | cru (1)

When Christians talk about God coming to dwell in their hearts, they are describing the Holy Spirit. The Bible describes the Spirit as the "breath" of God.

Again Jesus said: “Peace be with you! As the Father sent me, so I send you." He then breathed on them and said, "Receive the Holy Ghost."
(Juan 20:21-22)

So, just as oxygen is needed for life in the human body, if you trust in Christ, you will be reborn in a spiritual sense and the Holy Spirit will become the source of the new life that God puts in you. You no longer refer to God simply as a higher power beyond yourself. God is transforming you from the inside out to make you more like Jesus.

The Holy Spirit is the presence of God in the life of the believer. But this does not mean that God is divided into three separate parts.

God is three different persons who are somehow one substance. God is unique in this regard, so it's not surprising that coming to terms with this truth takes some work.

The Bible helps us break down the mysteries of the Holy Spirit into ideas we can understand.

(Video) Understanding the Holy Spirit - Explaining the Faith

The Holy Spirit is a Person

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Often people describe the Holy Spirit as the presence or "it." But the Holy Spirit is a person, not a thing. The Holy Spirit is God. The Holy Spirit has thoughts and wills.

The Holy Spirit can be saddened and even offended. But He can also be pleased when we trust Him to give us the strength to live according to God's plan for us.

Those who live only to satisfy their sinful nature will reap decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will reap eternal life from the Spirit.
(Galatians 6:8, New Life Translation)

The following scriptures help us see the truth about the individual nature of the Holy Spirit:

  • “The Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Corinthians 3:17).

  • "Eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, and the mind of man has not conceived", the things that God has prepared for those who love him, these are the things that God has revealed to us through the Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who knows a man's thoughts but his own spirit within them? Likewise, no one knows the thoughts of God, only the Spirit of God. What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit of God, so that we may understand what God has given us" (1 Corinthians 2:9-12).

  • “Don't you know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit who is in you and that you have received from God? You are not yourself. you have bought at a price. Therefore worship God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

  • "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you are sealed until the day of redemption" (Ephesians 4:30).

  • "I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Lawyer to help you and be with you forever" (John 14:16).

  • “And we are not ashamed of hope, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Romans 5:5).

  • "Do you not know that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells among you?" (1 Corinthians 3:16).

The Holy Spirit thinks of believers in Christ and responds to them. He knows the thoughts of the Father and imparts those thoughts to you. When you pray or read the Bible and feel God speak to you, it is an example of the Holy Spirit working in your life.

The more you let that sink in, the easier it will be to give the Holy Spirit the place of power it deserves in your life.

The Holy Spirit is God Himself

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The Holy Spirit is an equal and true member of what is known as "the Godhead." It is just another way of describing the triune God.

The Godhead consists of three equal persons living together in perfect unity. Believing this is essential to understanding the powerful role the Spirit plays in the lives of Christians and the way God works in the world.

The scriptures in this section show that the Holy Spirit is God. They describe Jesus, the Father, and the Holy Spirit interacting and living in communion with one another.

  • "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was without form and desolate, darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters" (Genesis 1:1- 2).

  • “At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. When Jesus came up out of the water, he saw the sky open up and the Spirit descend on him like a dove. And a voice was heard from heaven: "You are my beloved Son. I am well pleased with you" (Mark 1:9-12).

  • “God, who knows hearts, showed that he received them by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as he did with us” (Acts 15:8).

  • "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you" (2 Corinthians 13:14).

  • “God raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses to this. Exalted to the right hand of God, he received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and poured out what you see and hear "(Acts 2:33).

The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit is God. If you are a follower of Jesus, these verses encourage you to thank God for giving you his Spirit and help you see the Holy Spirit as worthy of your worship and love.

(Video) 5 Steps to KNOWING the HOLY SPIRIT MORE

What does the Holy Spirit do?

How to know and understand the Holy Spirit | cru (4)

The Holy Spirit has many different roles. But the first thing we need to understand is that the Holy Spirit is given to people who believe in Jesus to unite them with God and help them become more like Him. For Christians, the experience of eternal life does not begin at death, but at the moment they trust in Jesus andGod puts his spirit in them.

Now it is God who makes both you and me stand firm in Christ. He has anointed us, sealed us with his property, and placed his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee of what is to come.
(2 Corinthians 1:21-22)

Throughout the Bible, the Holy Spirit equips people for ministry, gives them specific insight and wisdom, teaches them how to interpret God's Word, communicates with the Father on people's behalf, andempowers Christians to live according to God's plan.

Here are some Bible verses about the work of the Holy Spirit:

  • He lives in the followers of Jesus and makes a permanent change in their character.

    “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance. There is no law against such things” (Galatians 5:22-23).

  • Teaches the truth about Jesus.

    "But the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of everything I have told you" (John 14:26).

  • He says what the Father tells him to say.

    “When He comes, the Spirit of Truth, He will guide you into all truth. He won't talk about himself. He will only speak what he hears, and he will make you know things to come" (John 16:13).

  • Empower believers to share their faith.

    "You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8).

  • It evokes the love of God in the hearts of people.

    “And we are not ashamed of hope, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (Romans 5:5).

  • The Holy Spirit is the promise of great things to come for those who trust in God.

    "And you were incorporated into Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were sealed in Him, the promised Holy Spirit, who is the deposit that guarantees our inheritance until the redemption of those who are of God , to the glory of His glory” (Ephesians 1:13-14).

  • It gives people the skills and abilities they need to share God's love. these are sometimes called "spiritual gifts."

    “God also testified with signs and wonders and various miracles and with the gifts of the Holy Spirit which were given according to his will” (Hebrews 2:4).

The Holy Spirit is unique and creative. The more you learn about him, the more easily you will recognize his presence in his life.

Where is the Holy Spirit in the Bible?

How to know and understand the Holy Spirit | cru (5)

Jesus is easy to find in the Scriptures. In a sense, he is everywhere, but we also have four books, known as the Gospels, which are specific biographies of his life. In the book of Jeremiah and elsewhere in the Old Testament, we see early references to God as Father. In the same way, Jesus often referred to him when he taught.

However, it may not be clear at first glance where the Holy Spirit appears in the Word of God. And yet, the better you know what to look for, the easier it will be to see Him throughout the Scriptures, from the first verse to the last.

The following verses are examples of where the Holy Spirit appears in the Bible.

You can also watch this video toReview of the presence of the Holy Spirit in the Bible.

  • The Bible begins with the presence of the Holy Spirit in the creation of the world.

    "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. And the earth was without form and desolate, darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters" (Genesis 1:1- 2).

    These are the first verses of the Bible. The spirit is present from the beginning.

  • The Holy Spirit lived in Moses as he led the Israelites to the Promised Land.

    “Then the LORD said to Moses, Assemble for me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom you know to be the elders of the people and their chiefs, and bring them into the tent of meeting, and let them take their place with you. . I'll go down there and talk to you. And I will take part of the Spirit that is upon you and put it on them, and they will bear the burden of the people with you, so that you will not bear it alone” (Numbers 11:16-17).

    When the Israelites wandered in the desert for forty years, Moses was unable to provide for all the Israelites. God the Father devised a plan to remove the burden of leadership from Moses and pass it on to the other Israelites. The Holy Spirit has endowed these people with the power of God to fulfill the role he has given them. As the nation of Israel progressed, the Holy Spirit continued to guide God's people.

  • The Holy Spirit gave King David words to speak.

    “The Spirit of the Lord spoke through me. His word was on my tongue" (2 Samuel 23:2).

    King David was perhaps Israel's most beloved king, but he also failed spectacularly. Like all of us, David was not perfect. During the first half of his reign, King David maintained a close relationship with God and was obedient to God. This verse is an example of how the Holy Spirit empowers King David to lead the Israelites effectively. King David foreshadows Jesus, the coming perfect King who spoke and acted in the power of the Holy Spirit while he was on earth.

    (Video) Understanding The Personality Of The Holy Spirit - Kevin Zadai - Session TWO
  • The Holy Spirit prophesied about Jesus before the Son came to earth.

    “The stick will grow out of Jesse's stump. from its roots the branch will bear fruit. The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and strength, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord” (Isaiah 11:1-2).

    This prophecy describes Jesus as the true King of Israel and says that he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, leading a life filled with the wisdom, clarity and knowledge of the Father.

    The Old Testament was not yet finished when Isaiah was written, but this prophecy shows that the Holy Spirit is moving history toward God's coming to earth in the form of Christ.

  • The prophets in the Old Testament were filled with the Holy Spirit to speak for God.

    “The Spirit came upon me and lifted me to my feet, and I heard him speak to me. He said, "Son of man, I am sending you to the Israelites" (Ezekiel 2:2-3).

    “But I am full of power, with the Spirit of the Lord, with righteousness and power, to declare Jacob his transgression and Israel his sin” (Micah 3:8).

    Both Micah and Ezekiel were prophets who powerfully demonstrated what it was like to be led by the Holy Spirit. They spoke everything that was inspired by the Holy Spirit and worked hard to persuade and motivate the Israelites to turn from sin and obey God.

  • John the Baptist saw the descent of the Spirit on Jesus.

    “The next day he saw Jesus approaching him and said to him: Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is the One of whom I said: "After me there will come a Husband who surpassed me because he was before me." I myself did not know him, but I came baptizing with water for this, so that he would manifest himself to Israel." And John testified: "I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove and resting on him. I did not know him, but the who sent me to baptize with water told me: "The one on whom you see the Spirit descend and rest, that is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit" (John 1:29-33).

    This passage takes us to the New Testament and to the beginning of Jesus' ministry. The Holy Spirit descended from heaven and remained with Jesus until the end of his earthly life.

  • Jesus himself was filled with the Holy Spirit to carry out his ministry.

    “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to preach liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set the oppressed free" (Lk 4:18).

    Jesus spoke these words to the Israelites as they worshiped God in the synagogue. He began his ministry by telling his friends and family that the Spirit of the Lord "rested upon me" for a purpose. Jesus spent a lot of time talking about the Holy Spirit and wanted his disciples to understand the power of the Spirit. He even told them that it would be "better" for them if he left because then the Holy Spirit would be sent to them (John 16:7).

  • The first followers of Jesus were filled with the Spirit of God to take the gospel to the known world, just like we are.

    "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly there came a noise from heaven like a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what looked like tongues of fire that split and they alighted on each of them. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages ​​as the Spirit permitted them" (Acts 2:1-4).

    This verse is critical to understanding the Holy Spirit. Prior to this point in history, the Holy Spirit did not indwell every follower of Christ. After Jesus died, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven, the Holy Spirit descended and filled every disciple and apostle of Christ to preach the gospel to the world. Now, whenever someone believes in Christ, the Holy Spirit immediately dwells in him. God's people experience the power of the Holy Spirit just like Jesus did.

  • The Holy Spirit empowers believers to live as Christians.

    “Yes, I am a vine. you are branches Those who abide in Me and I in them will bear much fruit. for apart from me you can do nothing" (John 15:5).

    The daily experience of the Christian life requires qualities that only God can give. The fruit of the Spirit mentioned above are just a few of these qualities, but believers also need resilience and a constant desire to know God more deeply. They must change daily to become more like Jesus. God accomplishes this by coming to live in them in the form of the Holy Spirit and then cultivating these qualities from within.

    The Spirit helps believers to hear God's voice, understand His Word, and choose obedience over self-indulgence. With our own strength, none of this would be possible.

  • The Bible begins and ends with the Holy Spirit.

    “I, Jesus, sent My angel to give you this testimony about the churches. I am the root and the seed of David and the bright morning star." The Spirit and the Bride say: "Come!" And whoever hears must say: "Come!" Let him who thirsts come. and whoever wants, take the water of life freely” (Revelation 22:16-17).

    What a beautiful verse at the end of the Bible. The Holy Spirit wants to give people living water. He wants to change their lives and make them young.

These verses are just snapshots of the Holy Spirit in the Bible. Without Him, the Bible is meaningless.

Take some time to study what this meansLive a life filled with the Holy Spirit with the Holy Spirit Starter Kit?

The Holy Spirit is dynamic and we know it. The more you allow Him to guide and direct your life, the more you will become like Christ and experience the love of the Father in heaven.

(Video) Understanding The Personality Of The Holy Spirit - Kevin Zadai - Session THREE

Next steps

  • HeHoly Spirit Resource PackIt is an excellent tool to deepen the study of the Holy Spirit.

  • Reverence"Thirsty"it is a clear and compelling read.

  • Find resources on the Holy Spirit withgospel coalitionIthirst for god.

Unless otherwise noted, Scriptures are from The Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL EDITION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved throughout the world.

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How do you sense the Holy Spirit? ›

If you want to be open to the Holy Spirit, it's often useful to pray and meditate in a quiet place. You can also feel the Holy Spirit when you pray and read the Bible and the Book of Mormon. When you take time to study God's words, you show Him that you truly want to know Him and learn from Him.

What are the 7 signs of the Holy Spirit? ›

The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. While some Christans accept these as a definitive list of specific attributes, others understand them merely as examples of the Holy Spirit's work through the faithful.

What do you feel when the Holy Spirit touches you? ›

For some people, the Holy Ghost may cause them to feel overwhelmed with emotion and moved to tears. For others, tears rarely or never come. And that's okay. For them, the Holy Ghost may produce a subtle feeling of gratitude, peace, reverence, or love (see Galatians 5:22–23).


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