Column: The Silent Partner in the Godhead — Getting the Holy Spirit Right (part 2)

Published 12:04 pm Monday, January 15, 2024

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By Hank Walker | Pastor at Friendship Baptist Church

In our last installment, we addressed common errors related to the person and role of the Holy Spirit; this time, we will seek to correctly summarize this amazing biblical doctrine.

Noted previously, the Holy Spirit “proceeds” from the Father and the Son—pointing people to them, glorifying them, and effecting salvation. The Father sent Him (Jn. 14:26), to “bear witness” about Jesus (Jn. 15:26). It is in His deference to the Father and Son that He gets His nickname, the “Silent Partner” of the Godhead.

In addition to His inter-relationship with the Son and the Father, we tend to best understand the Holy Spirit by His relationship to us. For instance, He is our “Helper” (Jn. 14:26) who teaches us all things by illuminating the Scriptures for our understanding. Using the Scriptures that He “inspired” (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Pet. 1:21), convicting of “sin and righteousness and judgment” (Jn. 16:8), He saves sinners by “granting repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim. 2:25). Once one has been “regenerated” by the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5; Jn. 3:5-8), he or she is “sealed” until the “day of redemption” (Eph. 1:13; 4:30)—their salvation having been guaranteed forever. He also helps us in prayer—informing our spirits how to pray—even when we don’t know how we should (Jude 1:20; Rom. 8:26-27).

Additionally, the Holy Spirit “sanctifies” us—making us more like Jesus—causing us to forsake the “deeds of the flesh,” teaching and enabling us to obediently “walk in the Spirit” (Gal. 5:16-26). He “fills” us (Eph. 5:18)—taking possession and control of us—causing us to be “temples” of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 6:19).

Moreover, He confers spiritual gifts so that we might effectively build up the church—and, although there are “different kinds of gifts,” it is the Holy Spirit who wisely distributes them for the benefit of our local congregations (1 Cor. 12:4).

Finally, it is through the infilling of the Holy Spirit that we gain the “mind of Christ” (1 Cor. 2:16), the understanding of God’s purposes and will for us as believers, by “interpreting spiritual truth to those who are spiritual” (1 Cor. 2:10-13).

Aren’t you glad that in Christ we are beneficiaries of the Silent Partner’s work?

Soli Deo Gloria