“I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire”. – Matthew 3:11
“And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God”. – Luke 1:35
The Holy spirit is the presence of Jesus; it is one with Jesus not separate. It has always been so, but the holy spirit’s influence and presence became exponentially brighter when God was born on earth, and then especially in the resurrection. This is extremely valuable for our heart of faith to contemplate.
Before being born on earth God is known as Jehovah. The holy spirit in its essence is the divine truth, especially the power of divine truth. There is no greater power in the universe than the power of divine truth from the Lord. It possesses all innocence and goodness and arising from this is complete, comprehensive and immutable power of truth that all things and all powers have no ability but to bow to. It occupies the core from goodness and so nothing is above it, or can overcome it. What ever come from the Lord’s will is divine truth and will come true in time. This is why all prophecy from the Old Testament came true no matter how long it took. Prophecy is divine because the will of God, and therefore it all came true in the New Testament. This scripture speaks to this power:
“A branch will come out of the trunk of Jesse. The spirit of Jehovah will rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and intelligence, the spirit of counsel and strength. He will strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the spirit of his lips he will kill the ungodly. Justice will be his loincloth, and the truth will wrap his thighs. (Isaiah 11:1, 2, 4, 5)
For the good people seeking to be regenerated the Holy spirit is the comforter. It brings justice, reconciliation, knowledge and love to the poor in spirit. To the evil it also brings justice, but devastation, exposure and to be put in their place – for they hate God and His people; they think they should be in power and not God. In the scripture we see relatively small but telling examples of this power. When the people want to stone the adulterous woman, Jesus says, “Let he who is without sin throw the first stone.” This stuns their conscience with the truth, and they are unable to act. When Jesus announces himself as the Messiah with the words, “Today these scriptures are fulfilled”, the people want to stone him and throw him off a cliff, but Jesus passes through them unharmed. When Jesus is arrested the soldiers want take hold of him, but Jesus flexes His power and they all fall to the ground around him.
These are a few examples, but there are many.
In the gospels we see how He has complete power over demons who possess others. In the big picture Jesus was been born to defeat all the powers of evil that had overrun the earth, much of the world spirits, and even the lower parts of heaven. The scripture tells that ‘violence is done even to heaven’. We can take comfort and assurance in the fact that Jesus has all power. When we love and believe in Him he takes us under His wing ‘like a mother hen’. We come under his power and protection when we acknowledge and love him in heart. This causes His presence (holy spirit) to be with us. This is the efficacy of prayer.
It is also very important to understand that even though Jesus has omnipotent power He leaves us in freedom, for Man can only be transformed in freedom. Jesus obeyed His own laws of divine order. In His life on earth He worked within the laws of freedom to transform man. In the garden when He is arrested Peter takes his sward and fights the soldiers and Jesus tells him to stop, saying, “don’t you know I could bring down legions of angels to defeat my enemies?”. But He does not. He could do this anytime He wanted but He knows the transformation in Man’s soul must take place reciprocally, that is, in freedom, from Man’s own will to meet Him.
Now is it very important to see how the Holy spirit (the presence of Jesus) came into its full manifestation when Jesus was born on earth and resurrected. Jesus is ‘the bridge’ because He entered the natural world, and by doing this made Himself known to Man and renewed everything.
“[The Comforter] will glorify me because he will take from what is mine and will make it known to you. Everything the Father has is mine. This is why I said that [the Comforter] will take from what is mine and will make it known to you”. (John 16:14, 15) In mentioning the Comforter and the Holy Spirit, the Lord was referring to himself. This is clear from these words of his: “The world would not recognize him but you know him; I will not leave you orphans, I am coming to you; you will see me.” And elsewhere, “Behold I am with you every day, even to the close of the age” (Matthew 28:20
When the Lord told the disciples that it is expedient that I accomplish my mission and die on the cross for then I will send you the Holy spirit, He is describing this situation: Before He was born God was in the celestial and spiritual, but had never existed in the natural/physical level. By being born on earth He entered the physical and He made even the natural bend to His will by making His physical body divine. In doing this He brought the celestial, spiritual and physical into complete presence and wholeness. What is in its wholeness from the lowest natural to the highest is in its power. This caused exponentially greater light to the life of Man. By dying and resurrecting He entered the innermost of all things, and ‘drew all things unto himself’. This ‘exponentially greater light’ is the presence of the Holy Spirit, and the comforter. This is what is meant when Isaiah says, “The light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun;” and when John writes in Revelation, “The contenance of the son of man was as the sun shinning in his strength.”
Before the resurrection, there was an intermediate step to be connected to God and heaven by way of the representative church of the Jews in the Old Testament. After the resurrection, all people in all places at all times are in direct relationship with the Lord – if they so choose. This is expressed in the words of David, “In his days shall the righteous flourish, and the abundance of peace until there is no longer any moon.”
In our spiritual life now, in this day, the Holy Spirit is the presence of Jesus, the fire that proceeds from God, and that kindles in our breasts a spiritual passion to know the Lord and for God’s will to prevail in this painful world. The Holy spirit ever urges us to seek union between our body and soul, to seek the marriage of our understanding and love, that together, creates a burning thirst in us that only He can satisfy. God is in His people. The Holy Spirit compels us to find the way to express, and manifest what God has given us to do.
The Holy Spirit proposes a puzzle that we must work out in our hearts, and by our actions in the world; and to the degree we do we BOND with God – the only true glory afforded to humans (received as if by brushing the hem of His robe). The Holy Spirit simultaneously inspires in us the willingness to humbly submit to God’s will – and the strength to see through deception and fight evil. The Holy spirit first kindles an anxiety of unknown cause and purpose, but if we persevere through the fog of anxiety, and there are time when it clears, and the desire to be right with God leads us to understand and to inspire others. This cannot help but lead us to confront and expose the deceptions of those of ill-intent – and to do it with love – which sometime may requite and engender composure and fierce determination. The Holy Spirit moves us to honor the good deeds and sacrifices of others, and especially to honor the one who redeemed all humanity by His deeds and sacrifice. Honor is for men and woman, Worship is honor to God, something only He is worthy of.