Christian Churches of God
The Holy Spirit
(Edition 3.5 19940515-20010527-20120538)
The Holy Spirit is explained in detail. The original disputes concerning the operation of the Spirit and the application in the Testaments are examined. The Spirit is shown to be a power of God and not a person. The way in which the Spirit operates is seen to be the enabling factor for the elect to become elohim or theoi as the early Church contended and as Zechariah 12:8 holds. This paper is central to an understanding of the Godhead.
The Holy Spirit
At Pentecost it is appropriate that we consider a number of matters. We can draw some very important notes out of Acts 2, which will show the correct way of observing Pentecost.
Acts 2:1-47  And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.  And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.  And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.  And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.  And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language.  And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans?  And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?  Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and the dwellers in Mesopotamia, and in Judaea, and Cappadocia, in Pontus, and Asia,  Phrygia, and Pamphylia, in Egypt, and in the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes,  Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.  And they were all amazed, and were in doubt, saying one to another, What meaneth this?  Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.  But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words:  For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.  But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel;  And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God,I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:  And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:  And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke:  The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come:  And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved. (KJV)
That text has a number of elements in it. Firstly, we will examine verse 1.
Acts 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
It shows that there is a mandatory assembly of the Church at Pentecost. It is a Feast where we are required to go away and be assembled with one accord in one place. So it is not a question of keeping it at home, unless it is a third tithe year when we may keep the Feast at home. We are required by God to be at the Feast of Pentecost at the place where He shall choose in the same manner as the other two Feasts, namely Passover and Tabernacles, are kept and we shall not appear empty handed (Deut. 16:16).
And it says: “When the day of Pentecost was fully come.” In other words, there are two elements to the Feast of Pentecost, i.e. the Sabbath and the Day of Pentecost. When it was fully come they were all gathered together. Hence, from the Sabbath they should have been gathered together at the Feast of Pentecost. This is probably the concept of the second Sabbath after the first (the Sabbatton deuteropro) of Luke 6:1.
From the Church’s correct observance of Pentecost (this first observance of Pentecost as a Church) the Holy Spirit entered them with great power. They were able to speak in tongues and they were able to perform in prophetic terms and to use the Holy Spirit or be used of the Holy Spirit. It might be said that an incorrect observance of Pentecost limits the capacity of the Church to be used of the Holy Spirit, stemming from obedience and desire.
When they began to speak in tongues and be used of the Holy Spirit, some of those visiting Jews who were listening said they thought they were drunk. Peter answered, “It is but the third hour of the day” (v. 15). Now that tells us when the service of Pentecost was undertaken. The third hour of the day is 9 o’clock in the morning. Therefore, the Pentecost service must commence at 9 a.m. and we must take steps to ensure that every one of us is in position on the Sabbath day in order that we can undertake the Pentecost service by 9 a.m.
Who or what then is the Holy Spirit that entered the Church at Pentecost? How does it relate to God?
We have dealt with the first two aspects of the concepts embodied in the Godhead, namely those of God the Father, and Jesus Christ as the Son of God. The summary obtained from the first section of our Statement of Beliefs is that God the Father is properly the One True God and that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that this understanding is the prerequisite to eternal life (Jn. 17:3).
God the Father
The Supreme Deity of the universe is God. He is the Almighty, the Creator and Sustainer of the Heavens, the earth and all things therein (Gen. 1.1; Neh. 9:6; Ps. 124:8; Isa. 40:26,28; 44:24; Acts 14:15; 17:24,25; Rev. 14:7). He alone is immortal (1Tim. 6:16). He is our God and Father and the God and Father of Jesus Christ (Jn. 20:17). He is the Most High God (Gen. 14:18; Num. 24:16; Deut. 32:8; Mk. 5:7) and the One True God (Jn. 17:3; 1Jn. 5:20).
Jesus the Son of God
Jesus is the first begotten (prototokos) of the creation (Col. 1:15) hence the beginning (arche) of the creation of God (Rev. 3:14). He is the onlyborn (monogene) Son of God (Mat. 3:17; Jn. 1:18; 1Jn. 4:9), conceived of the Holy Spirit and born to the virgin, Mariam incorrectly called Mary in English (Lk. 1:26-35). He is the Christ or Messiah (Mat. 16:16; Jn. 1:41), sent from God to be our Saviour and Redeemer (Mat. 14:33; Jn. 8:42; Eph. 1:7; Tit. 2:14).
From these concepts we are then faced with the fact and operation of the Holy Spirit. Trinitarians explain it as three persons as hypostases of God based on Greek philosophical concepts. The origins of the concepts in Christianity are examined in the papers Arche of the Creation of God as Alpha and Omega (No. 229) and The Use of the Term Hypostasis (No. 230); and The Origins of Christmas and Easter (No. 235).
The concept of the Babylonian model, which entered the orthodox system, is the absolute deception. The concept has entered the Church of God in the last days as Christ indicates. Christ made the comments he did to show that he was the beginning or arche of the creation of God.
The early quasi-Gnostic influences in Christianity commencing with Clement are examined in the paper Arche of the Creation of God as Alpha and Omega (No. 229). We see that Clement was correct in that God was the true arche in that He created from His will and from His will all things were created (Rev. 4:11). God is thus the creator, but Christ was the instrument of the creation and was its beginning (see above).
The idea that the divine wisdom is the adviser of God and the first of the beings created by God is, according to the writer Salvatore Lilla (Clement of Alexandria, Ch. III, Oxford University Press, 1971, pp. 192-230), characteristic of the Jewish-Alexandrine philosophy prior to Philo. So the Jews at Alexandria understood that wisdom was the first of the elements created by God. So it proceeded from God, with the Word of God then coming into existence and being tied together to God by wisdom as the Holy Spirit. It is the Sophia of Ecclesiasticus 1:4 and the first created entity of Proverbs 8:22. The Wisdom of Solomon 9:9 shows it assists God in the creation. Genesis refers to the Spirit of God at Genesis 1:2. The writers just before Christ incorrectly explained this aspect of the power of God as a being and this error has persisted to this day as the concept that the Holy Spirit is a person. That is the origin of the error.
The Spirit was logically the first emanation of God, because the generation of Christ and the other elohim made it logically necessary for there to be in place a mechanism for their integration with God, in order that there be absolute Monotheism as a unified whole. God is the centre of all beings. All beings in the Host are tied to Him by the Holy Spirit. It is through the Spirit that the nature of God is transmitted to all beings, both Christ and the rest of the elect, and ultimately all humans. That’s the mechanism and unless we understand that process we can’t really understand what is happening with the Holy Spirit. It occurs because the law of God emanates from the abiding goodness of the nature of God. Thus it can’t be Binitarian because there is an ultimate centrality to goodness, and that goodness is God. In Mark 10:18 Christ says: “Why call me good, only God is good,” because of the logic of the centrality of ultimate goodness. We can’t have a ditheist system. Reasoning, logic, tells us that we cannot.
The law of God emanates from the abiding goodness of His nature
The law of God proceeds from the nature of God and thus it stands forever, as God Himself is unchangeable being essentially good as the centre of ultimate goodness. This is examined in the papers The Government of God (No. 174), Love and the Structure of the Law (No. 200) and also Distinction in the Law (No. 96).
God's goodness leads each of us towards repentance (Rom. 2:4). The nature of God is of unchangeable goodness. The heavenly Host partake of His nature. Thus, they become constant in the divine nature and goodness. In this way Christ is the same yesterday, today and unto the ages (aioonas) (Heb. 13:8). The elect, by partaking of the divine nature (2Pet. 1:4), become part of a divine priesthood, that of Melchisedek which is intransmissible (aparabaton) or unchangeable unto the age (aioona) (Heb. 7:24). Christ is able to save in entirety those approaching God through him (see Heb. 7:25 Marshall's Greek-English Interlinear). However, he is neither the object of worship, nor the God that commands by will (see the paper The God We Worship (No. 2)).
We do not approach the Ditheist structure. We approach God through Christ and that is how we are saved. All of these Scriptures are either ignored or misconstructed by Binitarians or Ditheists.
The law of God is to be pursued by faith and not by works (Rom. 9:32). We have a New Covenant where the Lord establishes His laws in our minds and writes them on our hearts. He is our God and we are His servants, worshipping Him, by keeping His laws in our very nature (Heb. 8:10-13). We don’t keep the laws because they are written down; we don’t keep them because there is a punishment at the other end of it. The elect get to the point where we want to keep them because we have imbibed so much of God’s nature in the Holy Spirit that the Holy Spirit places our feet one after the other in the law. It is only through the Holy Spirit that we follow them without compulsion because the human mind (the carnal mind) is enmity towards God. That is not a cliche. The human mind just simply wants to follow ways which are contrary to the natural goodness of God. The Holy Spirit is the means by which our minds are converted. We then follow God out of desire because His nature lives in us and it is just contrary to our nature to sin. What then is the Holy Spirit?
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4) is that essence or power of God, which Christ promised to send to the elect (Jn. 16:7). It is not a person but the extension of the living power of God. It is the means whereby we become partakers of the divine nature (2Pet. 1:4), being filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 9:17; Eph. 5:18) and hence all Sons of God (Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7; Rom. 8:14; 1Jn. 3:1-2) and co-heirs with Christ (Rom. 8:17; Gal. 3:29; Titus 3:7; Heb. 1:14; 6:17; 11:9; Jas. 2:5; 1Pet. 3:7).
The Spirit is given by God to those who ask (Lk. 11:9-13) and obey Him, dwelling in those who keep God's commandments (1Jn. 3:24; Acts 5:32). The saints are those who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ (Rev. 12:17, 14:12).
From Job 38:7 there were sons of God before the foundation of the world. Jesus Christ was not the only son of God before the foundation of the world. There were many of them. He was not the only Morning Star before the foundation of the world – there were many of them.
Many are called but few are chosen because God gives the promise that if we ask Him He will give us His Holy Spirit. He has given His Holy Spirit to millions. Many have simply failed being called but not chosen. The terminology is they have gone like dogs to their own vomit and trampled on the Holy Spirit. Such people go back to the Second Resurrection. But they are not held accountable because it was known that they would do that (see also the paper The Fallacy of the Third Resurrection (No. 166)). They were not foreordained; they were not predestined. The firstfruits of the Holy Spirit were not given to them according to Romans 8:23. They have been given the Spirit but cannot sustain the faith.
The Holy Spirit is the comforter that leads God's servants into all truth (Jn. 14:16,17,26) (see the paper Truth (No. 168)). Our capacity to understand all truth depends upon our relationship with God through the Holy Spirit. It’s only by developing our relationship with God through the Holy Spirit that we can understand the Bible, otherwise it is just words. Many people don’t understand it because their relationship with the Holy Spirit is not being developed. It is not just a question of power; and the Holy Spirit is a Spirit of power and it will be witnessed in us in the Last Days as a power, and of a sound mind, and of understanding of truth. To many people the Bible is just words because they are not obedient and growing in the Holy Spirit.
It’s only through the Holy Spirit that Peter could say what he did (cf. Mat 16:13-17). That is why Christ said to him, “Blessed are you Simon Bar-Jonah.” He understood it because the Holy Spirit had given it to him to understand. We cannot blame anybody who has not got God’s Spirit. It is that some people are not called and they are not given to understand. We should pray for them; we shouldn’t hold it against them.
The gifts of the Holy Spirit are recorded in 1Corinthians 12:7-11 and the fruits are described in Galatians 5:22-23 (see the paper Fruit of the Holy Spirit (No. 146)). They are not given by measure from John 3:34 (RSV) and Romans 12:6. It is the means by which God can finally become all in all from 1Corinthians 15:28 and Ephesians 4:6. The gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit do not come through a ministry and they are not concentrated in a hierarchical structure. Some people have power of discernment of the spirit, of understanding, of interpretations, of teachings; some have healings; some have faith capable of moving mountains, more so than any people placed in administrative stations. That is something the Church has not understood in hierarchical government. Hierarchical government destroys the capacity to understand the operations of God.
Trinitarians assert that the Holy Spirit is a third person of a closed Godhead. That is false. That teaching is to limit the capacity of the Holy Spirit to extend to us, making us elohim or theoi.
The Holy Spirit operates from before baptism. The Spirit draws the elect to God through Christ (Heb. 7:25). The firstfruits of the Spirit are given to the individual at baptism from Romans 8:23, which clearly states that the adoption does not occur until the redemption of the body. Thus we are born again but continue to grow in the Spirit daily in Christ Jesus until we come into the glory of God. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth (1Jn. 4:6, 5:6) and, by speaking the Truth in all things, we grow into Christ our head in all respects (Eph. 4:15). We do not have to speak all truth in all things. Sometimes it is polite not to speak all truth in all things; e.g. if we don’t like something about someone, we don’t necessarily have to tell them. We should keep some things to ourselves. They are, nevertheless, true but perhaps kindly not said. That is not lying by omission; it is good sense. There is a difference between lying by omission and being polite. If we say nothing when in fact we should have said something then we are lying, because we omitted to bear witness. We have hence born false witness by our silence. That is important. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God (Rom. 8:14) and the Spirit of faith (2Cor. 4:13), which searches all things and knows all things (1Cor. 2:10-11; 12:3ff.).
Thus, the Holy Spirit is not an independent aspect of a triune God, but is the means by which we become elohim. We do not become Eloah. God was singular as Eloah. We become elohim or theoi through the Holy Spirit. That is a necessary distinction because people generally, as a result of Trinitarian indoctrination, do not understand that there is one God, Eloah, and that there is a family of elohim (see also the paper Psalm 8 (No. 14)). They think it’s blasphemy to say we will become elohim because they do not understand what elohim are. The Bible says we will become elohim (Zech. 12:8). The Spirit conveys to God an understanding of our thoughts and very being and in return gives us the attributes and nature of God Himself.
John 10:34-35 Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, I said, “You are gods”’? 35 If he called them gods, to whom the word of God came (and the Scripture cannot be broken)…….
Being routed through Jesus Christ as our mediator and intermediary elohim, the Holy Spirit enables Christ to help, teach and comfort us and to enable us to exercise the power of God. The Spirit gives to each person the attributes God desires in order to benefit the body as outlined in 1Corinthians 12:7-11. God gives us all different aspects and puts us together for the benefit of all. God put every person in the elect with a particular strength that the others did not necessarily possess. We are all doing a job that we were given by God to do. We have been given people of varied gifts and talents and God does it for the greater glory of us all. The body benefits by the operation of each one of us, but we can quench the operation of the Spirit if we don’t pull our weight individually. We affect each other because we are all one body. So if we don’t pray, fast and work, we diminish our power and it is not the individual’s power, it is the power of Jesus Christ. It wasn’t Moses who sat there with his arms up; he had Aaron and Hur together holding his arms up. It’s not Christ who does this job on his own. It is all of us who are holding Christ’s arms up, who is the Moses to come. We have to work. If we don’t work, we don’t achieve as much as we could and fewer people are exposed to the truth. Thus more people are adversely affected and our job is harder in the Second Resurrection. More people are damaged and the whole work is made harder. The demons are also necessarily given a lighter sentence because we don’t work and not because of our mercy. If we ultimately fail, then the demons are completely justified. That’s what this battle is all about – for the justification of the demons because they have blasphemed the Holy Spirit.
The Spirit can be quenched (1Thes. 5:19) by being neglected or grieved (Eph. 4:30) and thus admits of gains and losses in the elect. So we can be given the Spirit, grow in it and then commence practices, or sins, which limit our capacity to deal with the concepts. These sins limit our capacity to grow, and as we sin we diminish and grieve the Spirit. The Spirit leaves us in sin. Each one of us has been allowed to go through those processes where we know that we have lost power in the Spirit because of what goes on in our mind.
The fruit of the Holy Spirit is love from Galatians 5:22. This is the major aspect of the Holy Spirit. Therefore, if we do not love each other the Holy Spirit is not evident. That is how the Holy Spirit manifests itself. Love is the fruit because it is God’s nature. It is a positive thing and it harms nothing. It comes from God’s nature. The elect have this love of other people and that becomes agape love.
From the paper Song of Songs (No. 145), we have seen that the Greeks did not and perhaps philosophically could not understand agape love. It wasn’t a Greek concept. They had erotic love and filial love. They could not understand the fraternal structures because agape is not a Greek concept. It comes from the Song of Songs. It is a transliteration of the Hebrew word ’ahab (awhab’). That is where they got agape. It is simply a transliteration. The Greeks do not understand it now in terms of their philosophy, because they rely on Platonist structures and neo-Platonist structures, and their religious system has difficulty with it because they rely on their philosophy to interpret the Bible.
The Spirit is the means by which we worship God as stated in Philippians 3:3. Thus it cannot be God as an object of worship and hence equal to God the Father. If the Spirit is the means by which we worship God the Father, how can it be the object of worship? That is a simple process of logic. The Holy Spirit cannot be the means of worshipping something and be that something in its own right. It can’t tie us to that something and be the means by which we achieve worship and interaction with something and be that being itself in a separate, equal and absolute sense as a person. It is logically absurd to suggest that to be the case. We have to be worshipping the means by which we are worshipping the object. It becomes the means and the object. The Holy Spirit is in fact a force which empowers Christ.
God makes Christ an everlasting Father (Isa. 9:6; cf. also the paper Isaiah 9:6 (No. 224)) of which there are many fatherhoods in heaven and on earth (Eph. 3:15). All of these fatherhoods or families are named for God the Father, which is the reason we bow before God the Father, worshipping Him (Eph. 3:14-15).
We can examine this concept in Psalm 89:25. In Psalm 89 we are talking about the council of the saints and the Holy Ones. Verse 25 talks about David His servant where he has been anointed.
Verse 20: “I’ve found David my servant; with my holy oil have I anointed him:
Verse 24: … and through my name his horn will be exalted.
Verse 25: I will set his hand over the sea, his right hand over the rivers.
Verse 26: And he will call out to me, ‘You are my Father, My God, the Rock, My Saviour.’
Verse 27: I will also appoint him my firstborn, the most exalted of kings of the earth.”
The concept of God the Father was known in the Old Testament, but that is another concept where the Father was both of God the Father and it has been extended to Christ through Isaiah 9:6. “And there are many fatherhoods in heaven and earth” (Eph. 3:15) and all these fatherhoods or families are named for God the Father which is the reason we bow before God the Father worshipping Him from Ephesians 3:14-15. We do this through the Holy Spirit.
Christ was the firstborn or firstbegotten of the creation. For him all things were created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities, all things were created through him and for him. Christ is before all things and in him all things hold together (Col. 1:16-17). But it was God who generated him and who willed that the creation exist and subsist in Christ. Therefore, Christ is not God in any sense that God the Father is God and who alone is immortal (1Tim. 6:16) existing in abiding perpetuity. It is not the entities that were created by Christ here (see the papers The Purpose of the Creation and the Sacrifice of Christ (No. 160) and The Government of God (No. 174). God creates by will and Christ organises the structure.
The elect were called out of this world to a life of service and dedication. Many were called but few were chosen (Mat. 20:16; 22:14). The elect were the chosen, as Christ was the chosen of God (Lk. 23:35). The elect were chosen by Christ (Jn. 6:70; 15:16,19) under direction of God (1Pet. 2:4). God the Father gives us to Jesus Christ; it is not Christ who selects us. Christ will not lose anyone of all who were given to him by God the Father. He draws us out under direction from the Father.
To assist them, the elect were given understanding of the mysteries of God. The Holy Spirit was the mechanism by which they were given to understand the mysteries of God and the Kingdom of God (Mk. 4:11). For the wisdom of God is spoken in a mystery (1Cor. 2:7) which is explained by the servants of God (1Cor. 2:7; 15:51). For God's will is explained as a mystery (Eph. 1:9) which God gave to His servants by revelation. Further, the mystery is in the stewardship of Christ through the elect. Paul wrote:
Ephesians 3:2-6... assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace that was given to me for you, how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. When you read this you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; that is, how the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel. (RSV)
So it is the Spirit that makes known all of the mysteries of God and of Christ and draws the Gentiles in. But it is not the law; the law becomes manifest from the Spirit.
The Spirit within Trinitarianism
The Trinitarians separated theology from the so-called economy of salvation in the incarnation of Jesus Christ. The word economia basically means the incarnation of Jesus Christ and how God manifested Himself through the incarnation of Jesus Christ. The theology was the logic involved in the metaphysics of the incarnation and the metaphysics of the operation of God, i.e. the structure of being (or of the existence of God). As was noted in the paper The Development of the Neo-Platonist Model (No. 17), LaCugna (GOD FOR US: The Trinity and Christian Life, Harper, San Francisco, 1991), in dealing with the development of the doctrine of the Trinity and the separation of theology from the Plan of Salvation (or soteriology) as revealed in the incarnation of Christ, noted that the Cappadocians oriented theology in a direction which further contributed to the separation of economy and theology. This trajectory, or course, led to the:
via negativa of Pseudo-Dionysius and, finally, to the theology of Gregory of Palamas (Chapter 6).
In the Latin West, in the period immediately following Nicaea, theologians such as Hilary of Poitiers and, perhaps to an extreme degree, Marcellus of Ancyra, retained the connection between the divine hypostases and the economy of salvation. Augustine inaugurated an entirely new approach. His starting point was no longer the monarchy of the Father but the divine substance shared equally by the three persons [emphasis added]. Instead of inquiring into the nature of theologia as it is revealed in the Incarnation of Christ and deification by the Spirit [emphasis added], Augustine would inquire into the traces of the Trinity to be found in the soul of each human being. Augustine's pursuit of a 'psychological' analogy for the intratrinitarian relations would mean that trinitarian doctrine thereafter would be concerned with the relations 'internal' to the godhead, disjoined from what we know of God through Christ in the Spirit (LaCugna, p. 44).
It leads to Mysticism (cf. the paper Mysticism Chapter 1 Spreading the Babylonian Mysteries (No. B7_1)).
The Spirit is the means by which we become God (elohim), and is the means by which Christ became God (elohim). Trinitarians are committed to the Soul doctrine because they look for the divinity in the soul and seek to become equal to God the Father, which they are not and never can be, nor can any of us ever be. From Philippians 2:6, we do not seek to grasp equality with the Father, as Christ did not seek to grasp any equality with Him.
Philippians 2:6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, (RSV)
The Medieval Latin theology followed Augustine and the separation of theology from economy or soteriology (soteriology means simply plan of salvation). The entire structure became embroiled in neo-Platonism and Mysticism.
The important notations of LaCugna are that, from Augustine, the Monarchy of the Father was no longer paramount. The Trinity assumed co-equality. This was the second step following on from the false assertion of co-eternality. Binitarians/Trinitarians have to assert co-eternality – then they assert co-equality between two beings. The Holy Spirit is inserted there in whatever form is desired and it is then full blown Trinitarianism. The correct premise was the concept of the manifestation of the godhead in each individual, namely the operation of the Father by means of the Holy Spirit, which emanated from Him through Jesus Christ. It’s the only thing they did not misapprehend. This direction through Jesus Christ enabled Christ to monitor and direct the individual in accordance with the will of God who lived in each of the elect. Christ was not the origin of the Holy Spirit; he was its intermediary monitor. He acted for God as he had always acted for and in accordance with the will of God; but he was not the God. The Trinitarians lost sight of this fact if indeed they ever really understood the matter. As LaCugna says the:
Theology of the triune God appeared to be added on to consideration of the one God (p. 44).
The Greek theologians imposed the theology of a triune God. This is the ancient system and nothing to do with the Bible or Christianity. They added this theology to it, which fundamentally misapprehended the Holy Spirit and destroyed or limited our capacity to understand the operations of the Holy Spirit.
This affected fundamentally the way Christians prayed. We couldn’t use the Holy Spirit in the same way as the means to worshipping God because we’ve got the Holy Spirit there as an object of worship. It becomes itself the object of worship. How can we worship something that is within us? It’s logically absurd. It becomes narcissism. It is self-worship, because the Holy Spirit is in each of us. That is, they no longer prayed to the Father alone in the name of the Son as the Bible directs (from Mat. 6:6,9; Lk. 11:12) worshipping the Father (Jn. 4:23) but to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. That is the fundamental difference. Trinitarians are committed to say “we ask this in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” They don’t pray as Christ taught us to pray: “Whatever you ask the Father in my name it will be given you.” We pray to the Father. Our relationship is one on one with the Father and it is through the Holy Spirit and we ask it in the name of our Teacher, our Lord, our Master, our Despot, but we do not pray to him and we do not worship him and this is not being impious.
Further, the scholastics developed a metaphysics of theology itself, but the entire edifice was built in disregard or manipulation of the Bible. That is why Trinitarians never address all Bible texts on a subject and mistranslate and misquote other key texts and ignore the ones they cannot alter. But their system is based on Mysticism and Platonism. LaCugna states that:
The Cappadocians (and also Augustine) went considerably beyond the scriptural understanding of economy by locating God's relationship to the Son (and the Spirit) at the 'intradivine' level (p. 54).
The One God existed as ousia in three distinct hypostases. We have seen that the Platonic term ousia and the Stoic term hypostases mean essentially the same thing (see the papers Arche of the Creation of God as Alpha and Omega (No. 229) and The Elect as Elohim (No. 1)).
The relegation of the Spirit to operation at the intradivine level means that the elect can never participate in the nature of God as Christ participates in that nature. This assertion is contrary to Scripture. The elect do participate in the divine nature (2Pet. 1:4). The reason this is asserted is that it is a satanic deception. It is done to break off our relationship with God and to stop us from developing our relationship with God in the same way that Christ had his relationship with God through the Holy Spirit, so that it stops us from becoming co-heirs with Christ. If we haven’t got the same relationship with God through the Holy Spirit as Christ did we can’t be a co-heir with him. Co-heir means that we inherit the same thing. How could we be co-heir with somebody who is of an entirely different structure of being? How can we be co-heir with our God? It’s insane. This thinking got to the stage in the twentieth century where the modalism of the second century has returned even among the Sabbath-keeping churches to the extent that the claim is made that Jesus is God – as the one being. That belief stems from the god Attis.
In Ephesians 1:22 God put all things under the feet of Christ and made him head of all things to the Church (that is for us). God raised Christ:
… from the dead and he made him sit at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but in that which is to come; and He has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the Church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. (Eph. 1:20-23 RSV)
Christ is thus given authority over every name, as the name itself constitutes authority. He is given authority over all things so that the Church might come into its inheritance through Christ in whom the fullness of the Godhead dwelt bodily (Col. 2:9). This word translated Godhead here is theotetos meaning deity or the state of being God. Now Thayer says that deity (theot) differs from divinity (Theiot) as essence differs from quality or attribute (Thayer’s, p. 288). The meaning here is that the fullness of the essence of God dwelt bodily in Christ. It is this fullness of essence that is given to us so that all men put on the new nature of God (Col. 3:10). We can’t put on the new nature of God unless that mechanism allows us to be God. They become neither Jew nor Greek but all are Christ because he is in all (Col. 3:11). He develops men through the power of the Holy Spirit in order to finally make God all in all (1Cor. 15:28).
When all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to him who put all things under him, that God may be [all in all (KJV)] (panta en pasin) (see Marshall's Interlinear and also Col. 3:11 (panta kai en pasin)).
The Trinitarians have begun to translate this text as everything to everyone to avoid the logical extension of God as essence extending to all men as it did to Christ from these texts. It is Christ that fills us with the fullness of God (Eph. 3:19) – the fullness of Christ being an image of the Father (Eph. 4:13).
It is thus that we become an image or eikon of the Father as was Christ and so we are children of God and co-heirs with Christ to the Kingdom of God (Rom. 8:17; Jas. 2:5); heirs according to the promise (Gal. 3:29) of salvation (Heb. 1:14) and heirs together of grace (1Pet. 3:7). We are heirs together with Jesus Christ of grace. So the grace does not proceed from Jesus Christ. It proceeds from God. This is fundamental!
The Son of God in turn becomes an Everlasting Father (Isa. 9:6) being the head of the fatherhood of the human Host, thus taking its place alongside the other fatherhoods in heaven of which there are many.
Ephesians 3:14 For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named. (RSV)
The word family here is patria or fatherhood. Thus the title “father,” whether of households or of the household of God, is a delegated title demonstrating the ultimate responsibility of each leader of each unit down to families.
The order is from God to Christ to the male head of the household (1Cor. 11:3), who must discharge his responsibility as God does to Christ and the other Sons of God, who are elohim and the way those elohim in turn discharge their responsibilities to those under them. All this is done by the Holy Spirit. Our relationship as an individual is directly to Jesus Christ, not to any man on this planet. The Holy Spirit is the power and the force by which we deal directly to God through Jesus Christ.
The Holy Spirit is the mechanism, which ties all of these entities to each other and confers the capacity to be elohim on each of the Host. There is no question that the Holy Spirit is God in any sense that makes it distinct from the individual and confined to an intradivine relationship of three entities. All are Sons of God and, hence, co-heirs with Christ in the same sense. The worship of the Holy Spirit, in a sense, would be that of self-adoration as it is the means by which God becomes all in all. Hence, its worship is logically prohibited as self-adoration in the sense that it is a part of the individual. It is properly a power or conferring attribute and not God Himself. The Holy Spirit confers on us the ability to be elohim or theoi. In this way we also become consubstantial with the Father, as is Christ. This is examined in the paper Consubstantial with the Father (No. 81).
The concept of the Holy Spirit as hypostasis of God is a Greek concept, which is examined in the paper The Use of the Term Hypostasis (No. 230). Without the Holy Spirit we cannot become sons of God.
Christian Churches of God
PO Box 369 Woden, ACT 2606 Australia
E-mail: CCG Secretary
Copyright: The papers on this site may be freely copied and distributed provided they are copied in total with no alterations or deletions. The publisher's name and address and the copyright notice must be included. No charge may be levied on recipients of distributed copies. Brief quotations may be embodied in critical articles and reviews without breaching copyright.
| Search | Alphabetic Index | Long Catalogue | Home Page | Webmaster | Additional |