foundation topic

Who Is the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit is God himself, who comes to dwell in God’s people to help them know, love, and obey Jesus and know God the Father.

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He's God with us

The Holy Spirit is our strength, but he's a person. He's not a force, but a friend—the answer to God's promise to be with his people. 

Theme Verse
JOHN 14:26 ESV

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

Short Content

Who Is the Holy Spirit?

The Holy Spirit sits in the backseat of many people’s Christian theology. While you may hear a lot about God the Father and Jesus his Son, the role of the Holy Spirit is often neglected in Christian circles.

But as we look closer at who the Holy Spirit is and what he does, we will quickly realize that he is vital to any explanation of Christianity. To put it plainly, nothing of any consequence happens in the life of the Church or in an individual Christian without the Holy Spirit.

We are introduced to God’s Spirit in the second verse of the Bible, but there is never a full-blown explanation as to who the Spirit is in the Old Testament. However, at the revelation of Jesus Christ, we begin to understand that the Spirit is actually a Person equal in essence to God the Father and God the Son.

The Bible is clear: the Holy Spirit is not a commodity or force, though many churches today treat him that way. The Spirit is as much a Person as are the Father and the Son. We must remember to refer to the Holy Spirit as “he,” not as “it.”

This means that the Spirit is a relational being. For example, the Spirit teaches Jesus’ disciples (John 14:26); he speaks (Acts 13:2), guides (Galatians 5:16), and leads (Romans 8:4); he helps and prays and pleads (Romans 8:26-27). He can be lied to (Acts 5:3); he can be grieved (Isaiah 63:10; Ephesians 4:30). In John 16, where Jesus provides extensive comments about the promised Spirit, the Spirit is said to “come,” “convict,” “guide,” “speak,” “hear,” and “tell.” All of these activities are relational, personal activities.

In numerous other places, the Bible mentions the Holy Spirit alongside God the Father and Jesus the Son, implying an intimate and equal relationship between the three. For example, believers are baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—all three persons of the Trinity are brought together under one name (Matthew 28:19). This triune relationship is seen in passages like 2 Corinthians 13:14 and 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14. The Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit is not just a relational person, he is also a Divine person. He's God.

Another evidence that the Spirit is God is that believers are called God’s “temple,” because God’s Spirit indwells them (1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19). The connotation of a temple is a place where God dwells. Calling a Christian the temple of the Holy Spirit indicates that the Spirit is in fact God.

Everything in the Christian’s life has something to do with God’s Spirit. From the ability to confess Jesus as Lord (1 Corinthians 12:3), to being born again (John 3:5), to bearing spiritual fruit and growing in godly character (Galatians 5:22-23) and possessing spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 12:11), nothing of any value or importance in the Christian life happens apart from the Spirit.

The Holy Spirit does not take backseat in the Christian life, though he may have taken that place in our thoughts. He actually drives our life of faith in Jesus. The question is, will we let him have the wheel?



Who Is the Holy Spirit?
Video: 2 Min
by J.I. Packer at Crossway
Article: 10 Min

Four Ways We
Go Wrong in
Thinking About the Holy Spirit

by Michael Horton at


God is spirit,
and his worshipers
must worship
in the Spirit
and in truth.

John 4:24 NIV

What We Believe About the Holy Spirit

Heidelberg Catechism, Q&A #53

Question: What do you believe concerning the Holy Spirit?

Answer: First, he is, together with the Father and the Son, true and eternal God. [1] Second, he is also given to me, [2] to make me by true faith share in Christ and all his benefits, [3] to comfort me, [4] and to remain with me forever.[5]

[1] Genesis 1:1, 2; Matthew 28:19; Acts 5:3, 4; 1 Corinthians 3:16.
[2] 1 Corinthians 6:19; 2 Corinthians 1:21, 22; Galatians 4:6; Ephesians 1:13.
[3] Galatians 3:14; 1 Peter 1:2.
[4] John 15:26; Acts 9:31.
[5] John 14:16, 17; 1 Peter 4:14.

See quote source
Video: 4 Min
Article: 7 Min

The Gospel of the Holy Spirit

by Trevin Wax at The Gospel Coalition

Video: 2 Min
by Sinclair Ferguson at Ligonier Ministries

Folk | Country Gospel

God the Spirit

by Matt Boswell
How to Receive the Holy Spirit?

We receive the Holy Spirit
by simply receiving
the Lord Jesus Christ
as our Savior.
When we do receive the
Spirit, the Holy Spirit
becomes our permanent possession
the moment we believe.

Praise & Worship

Come Like a Fire

by Bria Jean
John 3:5 ESV

Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit."


if anyone
does not have
the Spirit of Christ,
they do not
belong to Christ.

Romans 8:9 ESV
Article: 7 Min

What Does It Mean to Be Sealed with the Holy Spirit?

by Erik Raymond at The Gospel Coalition


What Does It Mean to Be Sealed with the Holy Spirit?

by John MacArthur

A Roman seal conveyed authenticity, security, ownership, and authority. And the Spirit of God represents those same realities in the lives of His children.

Those who have received the Holy Spirit can rest assured that they are truly saved (authenticity) and that their salvation can never be lost or stolen from them (security).

Moreover, the Spirit’s presence in their lives demonstrates that God is their Lord and Master (ownership). As they are led by the Spirit, they will manifest a life of submissive obedience to Christ (authority).

All this is part of the Spirit’s sealing work.

See quote source
Ephesians 1:13-14 NIV

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

Luke 11:13 ESV

“If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

Article: 10 Min

What’s Better Than Jesus Beside You

by J.D. Greear at Desiring God

John 16:7 CSB

Nevertheless, I am telling you the truth. It is for your benefit that I go away, because if I don’t go away the Counselor will not come to you. If I go, I will send him to you.

Video: 5 Min

Do You Honor the Holy Spirit?

by Charles Spurgeon

To the believer: Dear brother, honor the Spirit of God as you would honor Jesus Christ if he were present. If Jesus Christ were dwelling in your house you would not ignore him, you would not go about your business as if he were not there. Do not ignore the presence of the Holy Spirit in your soul. I beseech you, do not live as if you had not heard whether there were any Holy Spirit. To him pay your constant adorations. Reverence the august guest who has been pleased to make your body his sacred abode. Love him, obey him, worship him.

See quote source
What Does the Holy Spirit Do?

I can think of no thought more humbling or more overwhelming than the thought that
a Person of divine majesty
and glory dwells
in my heart
and is ready to use even me.



by Crowder
Article: 7 Min

The Holy Spirit Is Your Helper

by Paul Tautges at Biblical Counseling Coalition

Article: 25 Min

The Holy Spirit as a Teacher

by R.A Torrey, adapted by

Galatians 4:6 ESV

Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.”

What Is the Fruit of the Spirit?

What Is the Fruit of the Spirit?

by John MacArthur, quoted from his Study Bible

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law" (Galatians 5:22-23).

The Fruit of the Spirit
Godly attitudes that characterize the lives of those who belong to God by faith in Christ and possess the Spirit of God. The Spirit produces fruit, which consists of nine characteristics or attitudes that are inextricably linked with each and are commanded of believers throughout the NT.

One of several Greek words for love, agape is the love of choice, referring not to an emotional affection, physical attraction, or a familial bond, but to respect, devotion, and affection that leads to willing, self-sacrificial service (John 15:13; Romans 5:8; 1 John 3:16-17))

A happiness based on unchanging divine promises and eternal spiritual realities. It is the sense of well-being experienced by one who knows all is well between himself and the Lord (1 Peter 1:8). Joy is not the result of favorable circumstances, and even occurs when those circumstances are the most painful and severe (john 16:20-22). Joy is a gift from God, and as such, believers are not to manufacture it but to delight in the blessing they already possess (Romans 14:17; Philippians 4:4).

The inner calm that results from confidence in one’s saving relationship with Christ. The verb form denotes binding together and is reflected in the expression “having it all together.” Like joy, peace is not related to one’s circumstances (John 14:27; Romans 8:28; Philippians 4:6-7).

The ability to endure injuries inflicted by others and the willingness to accept irritating or painful situations (Ephesians 4:2; Colossians 3:12; 1 Timothy 1:15-16).

Tender concern for others, reflected in a desire to treat others gently, just as the Lord treats all believers (Matthew 11:28-29; 19:13-14; 2 Timothy 2:24).

Moral and spiritual excellence manifested in active kindness (Romans 5:7). Believers are commanded to exemplify goodness (Galatians 6:10; 2 Thessalonians 1:11).

Loyalty and trustworthiness (Lamentations 3:22; Philippians 2:7-9; 1 Thessalonians 5:24; Revelation 2:10).

Taken from the ESV® MacArthur Study Bible, copyright ©2010 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Article: 12 Min

The Fruit of the Spirit

by Billy Graham at Decision Magazine

fruit of the spirit
1 Thessalonians 1:4-7 ESV

For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction. You know what kind of men we proved to be among you for your sake. And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit, so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia.

Video: 2 Min


The Fruit of the Spirit

by Steve Green

The fruit of the Spirit
is not excitement or orthodoxy;
it is character.

John 15:4-5 ESV

Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.


Fruit is borne
not by trying,
but by abiding.


An Amazing Aspect of the Holy Spirit's Character

by Martyn Lloyd-Jones

The Spirit does not glorify himself; he glorifies the Son… This is, to me, one of the most amazing and remarkable things about the biblical doctrine of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit seems to hide himself and to conceal himself. He is always, as it were, putting the focus on the Son, and that is why I believe, and I believe profoundly, that the best test of all as to whether we have received the Spirit is to ask ourselves, what do we think of, and what do we know about, the Son. Is the Son real to us? That is the work of the Spirit. He is glorified indirectly; he is always pointing us to the Son.

See quote source
Our Prayer for You

For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.
(Colossians 1:9-12 NIV)