Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
Authored By :
Published On :
May 26, 1997
Last Updated :
July 14, 2012
Jesus' Departure And Spiritual Presence In Our Midst, Promise Of The Holy Spirit, Blind Leaders Of The Blind, Comparing The Attributes Of Holy Ghost With Jesus, Coming Comforter After Jesus Departs, Nature Of The Virgin Birth, Virtue Leaves The Lord's Body When He Heals, Jesus Acted As A Prism Or Conduit, John Chapter One And Events In The Beginning, All Things Were Made By Jesus Christ, Was Jesus The Holy Spirit Incarnate?, Blasphemy Against The Holy Ghost, Holy Trinity Doctrine, God Is Not A Liar, Three That Bear Record In Heaven, Reading List
In the Book of Matthew we find the following verses where Jesus discusses His spiritual presence amongst Christian believers:
"Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them."
Matthew 18:19-20, KJV
In the Gospel of John we also find the following verse in which Jesus informs His followers of His coming departure from the Earth, and His return to His Father in Heaven:
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father."
John 14:12, KJV
In reading the above verses, a new window of possibility presents itself. Notice that Jesus is saying that where two or three are gathered together in His Name, He is in the midst of them. That may be part of the key. Please notice that He does not say God's Spirit or the Holy Spirit is in the midst of them; rather, He specifically says "I am in the midst of them". Is Jesus speaking figuratively here? Or is He saying His actual spiritual presence or essence will be with them? If we accept the latter possibility, the verse from John makes even more sense.
Why will they do greater works? Because Jesus goes to His Father. In other words, by being absent in body, it appears that Jesus might be saying He will be present with them in Spirit in a much greater way than He could ever be with them in the flesh.
In John chapter fourteen where Jesus is discussing how He will send the Holy Spirit to His followers, we read the following verses:
"And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 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. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you."
John 14:16-18, KJV
If we look at this closely, it offers some interesting possibilities. Here we have Jesus promising to send the Holy Spirit. Apart from calling it another Comforter, Jesus refers to it as the Spirit of Truth. As you may recall, a little earlier in this same chapter, Jesus informs us that He is in fact the Truth, as we see by this well-known and very popular verse:
"Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
John 14:6, KJV
Jesus then proceeds to tell His Disciples that the world cannot receive the Spirit because they don't see him or know him. But then Jesus says that His disciples do know him and that he dwells with them -- present tense -- and will be in them -- future tense. Exactly what is Jesus saying here? Well, in saying that the world seeth him -- the Spirit -- not, it appears that Jesus is referring to their spiritual blindness; that is, that they haven't recognized Him as the Messiah. Consider these verses which confirm this very thought:
"Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch."
Matthew 15:14, KJV
"Woe unto you, ye blind guides, which say, Whosoever shall swear by the temple, it is nothing; but whosoever shall swear by the gold of the temple, he is a debtor! Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gold, or the temple that sanctifieth the gold? And, Whosoever shall swear by the altar, it is nothing; but whosoever sweareth by the gift that is upon it, he is guilty. Ye fools and blind: for whether is greater, the gift, or the altar that sanctifieth the gift? Whoso therefore shall swear by the altar, sweareth by it, and by all things thereon. And whoso shall swear by the temple, sweareth by it, and by him that dwelleth therein. And he that shall swear by heaven, sweareth by the throne of God, and by him that sitteth thereon. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone. Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also."
Matthew 23:16-26, KJV
Continuing with the verses regarding the Comforter, Jesus said that it dwelt with them. Well, who dwelt or abode with the Disciples at that time? Jesus did! Of course, we could also interpret this as meaning that the Spirit abode with them through Jesus' presence. Jesus also said that they -- the Disciples -- saw him. Who did the disciples see? Jesus! Again, we could also interpret this as meaning that they saw, or that the workings of the Spirit were revealed to them through Jesus' miracles. Notice His final words: "I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you."
In everything Jesus has said to His disciples about the Comforter, it appears that He could very easily be describing Himself. He is the Truth, they see Him, He dwells with them, and He will not leave them comfortless but will come to them again, both in a physical sense -- after His Resurrection -- and in a spiritual sense as well -- after they receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost in Acts chapter two. Notice too that Jesus said the Comforter would "abide with you for ever". Consider what Jesus said at the very beginning of this chapter:
"Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."
John 14:1-3, KJV
Doesn't this sound like the Comforter -- Jesus -- abiding, or dwelling with them forever? Thus, there is a possibility that Jesus may be equating Himself with the Holy Spirit, which He also referred to as "he". One final verse which shows the necessity of Jesus departing before He could send the Holy Spirit is the following:
"Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you."
John 16:7, KJV
This is the second time we find Jesus saying that He will send the Comforter to them after He leaves them. Why is it so important that Jesus has to leave before the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, can come? Why can't they both be present at the same time? Could it be because what Jesus is trying to tell them, which they were apparently having a hard time understanding since His Resurrection hasn't occurred yet, is that the Holy Spirit is His very essence, His own spiritual presence? This would certainly clear up the idea of Him not only dwelling with them -- at present -- but also in them -- following His Resurrection.
Now, please understand that I am not definitely saying that Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are one and the same. What I am doing is suggesting the possibility so that my readers can come to their own conclusions based on the Scriptural evidence I have provided. One thing we do know, is that events occurred just as Jesus had promised. Soon after His Resurrection, the first disciples did in fact receive the gift of the Holy Spirit while waiting in the upper room in Jerusalem. As soon as Jesus was gone, the Holy Ghost came. Could this mean the physical body left so the spiritual essence of Jesus could return to empower them from on high?
If we assume that what I have said so far is correct -- keeping in mind that it is just a theory -- this offers a really interesting angle to His virgin birth as well. In Matthew chapter one we read the following verses:
"Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost . . . But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost."
Matthew 1:18, 20, KJV
Exactly what is meant by these two verses? Well, we could interpret it to mean that Jesus being formed in Mary's womb was the result of the creative force of the Holy Ghost, which is in essence the creative force of God Himself. A more radical interpretation would be that "found with child of the Holy Ghost" really means "found with the child of the Holy Ghost". In other words, the Holy Ghost itself actually incarnated in Mary's womb to become the fetus Jesus. Using this same manner of interpretation, the second verse might read "for that which is conceived in her is the Holy Ghost". Again, meaning that the Holy Ghost itself, the very spirit of Jesus, incarnated in Mary's womb. Some people might find this a bit shocking to consider. Others might say it is more in line with their particular idea regarding the Holy Trinity.
If we are willing for a moment to consider this possibility, this might add some greater significance to a few other verses which deal with Jesus' healing ability. Consider the following:
"And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?"
Mark 5:30, KJV
"And the whole multitude sought to touch him: for there went virtue out of him, and healed them all."
Luke 6:19, KJV
"And Jesus said, Somebody hath touched me: for I perceive that virtue is gone out of me."
Luke 8:46, KJV
Exactly what is this virtue? If Jesus was the Holy Spirit incarnate, could it be referring to the fact that each time He healed someone, it was like a little bit of the Holy Spirit was passed to them? One verse which just occurred to me is John 3:34 which reads:
"For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him."
John 3:34, KJV
This idea goes along with what I speak about in the series "Lying Wonders of the Endtime?". In other words, Jesus' physical body on Earth may have merely acted as a prism or conduit for the Spirit and Light of His Father in Heaven. If the Holy Ghost is indeed the creative force aspect of God the Father, then it would make it much easier to understand what is meant by not giving the Spirit to Him by measure. A creative force would never run out because it would continually renew itself. Not only that, but if the person Jesus Christ was the physical manifestation of the Holy Spirit, then this also helps to explain the first verses in John chapter one:
"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made."
John 1:1-3, KJV
A lot of different interpretations have been applied to the above verses over the centuries, but I have heard very few people promote this one. Consider the following ideas:
"In the beginning was the Word": this obviously means that Jesus was in the beginning because a little further down, as well as in many other places, Jesus is called the Word of God.
"and the Word was with God": Jesus has been with His Father God since the beginning of time.
"and the Word was God": Does this mean that Jesus was/is God and God was /is Jesus? This is the common view accepted by trinitarians, but is it the correct one? Before jumping to the wrong conclusions, let's consider what the rest of these verses say.
"The same was in the beginning with God": Well, that is the second time John is saying that the Word was with God. Is it beginning to sound a bit confusing? First John says the Word was with God, then he says the Word was God, and now again he says the Word was with God. What is going on here? Can't he make up his mind?
"All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made": Okay, now we can sort this all out more easily. In my view, what this is saying is that Jesus and His Father God were together in the beginning of time. Two separate entities. That is why John says "with" two times. He is trying to clarify that point. Well, if that is the case, why does he also say that the Word was God? Simple. If you read what comes next, it makes it quite clear; that is, if you are willing to see it. The main subject of John's discourse here is not God, but rather the Word, Jesus. John is giving us an introduction to the Word of God, to Jesus. John is saying that the Word made all things. Jesus made all things. He is saying that when we read that word "God" in Genesis chapter one, it isn't talking about God the Father, it is talking about Jesus. It is saying that Jesus made all things. Thus, as John says, "the Word was God". Do you see my point now?
Now, before some of my readers accuse me of being crazy, a false prophet and a heretic, please read the following verses. The Apostle Paul was privy to some pretty deep spiritual insights. Consider what he writes to the Colossians:
"Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins: Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;"
Colossians 1:13-19, KJV
Please read these verses closely. They are not talking about God. Paul is very specifically describing Jesus' role and ministry to us. In whom do we have Redemption? Jesus! Who is the image of the invisible God? Jesus! Who was the firstborn of every creature? Jesus! By whom were all things created? Jesus! And on and on it goes. Jesus is the Head of the Body, the church. Jesus is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead. Paul is saying the same exact thing as John said in John chapter one regarding the creation. In essence, they are both saying that when you read Genesis chapter one, it is talking about Jesus when it says "God", and not God the Father as many erroneously believe. It is right there as plain as day if you are willing to receive it.
So then, this takes us back to our discussion concerning the Holy Spirit being the creative force of God. And who is the creative force of God? Jesus the Son is. We have now looked at several places in the Bible which tell us that. This explains why He had the power to heal so many people, why it says He had the Spirit without measure. He was the very embodiment of the Holy Spirit. That word "virtue" must then be referring to a small spark of the Spirit leaving Him whenever He healed people. It is like His very own creative force rebuilt their broken bodies, because He is the one who designed the human body to begin with.
Following this line of thought, this would explain why John the Baptist said he baptized with water, but there was one coming who would baptize with the Holy Ghost, A we see by this verse:
"I indeed have baptized you with water: but he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost."
Mark 1:8, KJV
Is it possible that the reason why Jesus was able to baptize with the Holy Ghost is because He was the Holy Ghost incarnate? Well, so far this argument may seem rather solid to some. However, the truth is that if we follow this possibility all the way through to the end, we run into a few problems. For example, if Jesus was the Holy Ghost incarnate, how do we explain this verse which speaks of the birth of John the Baptist?:
"For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother's womb."
Luke 1:15, KJV
It doesn't make sense that both John and Jesus can be the embodiment of the Holy Ghost. We are told that Jesus was conceived of the Holy Ghost and that John was filled with the Holy Ghost. All of a sudden, in spite of our attempt to try to prove otherwise, it now appears that Jesus and the Holy Ghost are not one and the same thing. The Holy Ghost appears to be an exterior force to both Jesus and John, a separate spiritual entity or power. Tragically, the more probing we do, the worse things seem to get for this trinitarian position. Consider these verse that are found in the Gospel of Matthew:
"Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men. And whosoever speaketh a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come."
Matthew 12:31-32, KJV
If God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost are all one entity as proposed by Trinitarians -- please see such articles as the eight-part series "Roman Catholicism, Water Baptism and the Holy Trinity" -- how is it possible to blaspheme the one without blaspheming the other? Jesus is clearly saying here that blasphemy against Himself will be forgiven, but not blasphemy against the Holy Ghost. I have always believed that blasphemy against the Holy Ghost equates to non-belief in Jesus Christ as the Messiah. Why? Because Jesus said that the Spirit bears witness to the truth, and the most important truth in the entire Bible as far as I know, is that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh and died for the sins of the world. The Apostle John seems to confirm this in the following verses:
"Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world."
1 John 4:2-3, KJV
This is why blasphemy against the Holy Ghost cannot be forgiven, because it testifies to the fact that Jesus is the Son of God who died for the sins of the world. The primary reason the first Apostles received the Holy Ghost was to be a witness of the truth in all the world, to spread the Good News of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Until a person accepts Jesus' death and resurrection as truth, they are damned for eternity. To blaspheme the Holy Ghost is to call God a liar, to say that He didn't send His Son, that He does not love us, that there is no hope of Eternal Life, etc. It gets really hideous if we take it all the way to the end. But we know that this is not true, don't we? After all, consider the following verses:
"God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?"
Numbers 23:19, KJV
"God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged."
Romans 3:4, KJV
"In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;"
Titus 1:2, KJV
"Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son."
1 John 2:22, KJV
"He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son."
1 John 5:10, KJV
Thus, from this exercise in logic and deductive reasoning, it appears that I have basically arrived at the same conclusion that I set forth in "Roman Catholicism, Water Baptism and the Holy Trinity". That is that, contrary to popular Roman Catholic belief, the Trinity just does not hold up under scriptural scrutiny, even when we try to make it work. Clearly, Jesus and the Holy Ghost are two separate entities, otherwise, there is no way you could blaspheme one without blaspheming the other as Jesus says in the above verses. Let me again remind you of the verses from the first epistle of John:
"For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one."
1 John 5:7-8, KJV
These three are one in unity because they agree as one. They are not three entities all rolled up into one. In order for an agreement to exist, there must obviously be separate and independently-thinking parties who decide to agree upon something. I don't know about you, but I just can't see God agreeing with Himself, can you? It defies logic. So who and what is the Holy Ghost, or the Holy Spirit, if you prefer? I offer some of my own ideas concerning this issue in articles such as "Love, Mercy, Forgiveness And Chastisement" and "The Judgment of Angels, Demons and Men". Please consider reading them.
I pray that you have found this discourse interesting and enlightening. If you have enjoyed reading this article, please consider sharing its URL with your online friends. If you have an account with Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Tumblr, etc, I would also appreciate if you would take the time to click on the corresponding link that is found on this page. Thanks so much, and may God bless you abundantly!
For additional information, you may want to refer to the list of resources below which were also mentioned in this article, and which are likewise located on this very same Bill's Bible Basics website:
Roman Catholicism, Water Baptism and the Holy Trinity
Love, Mercy, Forgiveness And Chastisement
The Judgment of Angels, Demons and Men
Lying Wonders of the Endtime