Understanding The Bible
Clarence E. Mason's "Soteriology II"
THE DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
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BY THE AUTHOR
Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.
Philadelphia College of Bible
THE DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
- THE PERSONALITY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
- The necessity for proof
- Contrasted with other persons of the God-head, the
Spirit seems impersonal.
- The names and symbols used of the Holy Spirit are
suggestive of the impersonal, such as breath, wind, power, fire, oil, and
water, Jn. 3:5-8; Acts 2:1-4; Jn. 20:22; 1 Jn. 2:20.
- The Holy Spirit is not always associated with the
Father and Son in the salutations and greetings of the New Testament, 1
- The proof of the personality of the Holy Spirit
- Personal characteristics are ascribed to the Holy
- Intelligence, 1 Cor. 2:10-11.
- Will, 1 Cor. 12:11.
- Mind, Rom. 8:27.
- Love, Rom. 15:30.
- Goodness, Neh. 9:20.
- Grief, Eph. 4:30.
- Personal acts ascribed to the Holy Spirit.
- He searcheth the deep things of God, 1 Cor. 2:10.
- He speaks, Rev. 2:7.
- He cries, Gal. 4:6; Rom. 8:16.
- He makes intercession, Rom. 8:26,
- He teaches, Jn. 14:26.
- He calls and commissions men. Acts 13:2; 20:28.
- Personal treatment is received by the Holy Spirit.
- He is rebelled against, Isa. 63:10 margin; Heb.
- He is lied to, Acts 5:3-4.
- He is blasphemed, Mt. 12:31-32.
- He can be sinned against, Mk. 3:29.
- The importance of the personality of the Holy Spirit
- In connection with worship
If the Holy Spirit is a Divine Person and yet is unknown or ignored as
such. He is being deprived of the love and adoration which are His due.
If, however. He is only an influence, force, or power coming from God, we
are practicing idolatry or false worship.
- From the standpoint of service
It is necessary to decide whether the Holy Spirit is a power or force that
we are to get hold of and use, or whether He is a Person of the God-head,
who is to control and use us, Acts 8:18-19. The first conception leads to
self-exaltation and self-assertion; the other, to self-abasement and
- Because of the relation to Christian experience
It is of the highest experimental value that we know whether the Holy
Spirit is only a mere influence and impersonal force, or whether He is an
ever-present friend and helper, a Divine companion and guide.
- THE DEITY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
Proof of the deity of the Holy Spirit:
- Divine names are given to Him.
- He is called God, Acts 5:3-4.
- He is called Lord, 2 Cor. 3:18.
- Divine attributes are ascribed to Him.
- Eternity, Heb. 9:14.
- Omnipresence, Ps. 139:7-10.
- Omnipotence, Lk. 1:35.
- Omniscience, 1 Cor. 2:10-11; Jn. 14:26; 16:12-13 R.V.
- Divine works are performed by Him. T~ Creation, Job 33:4;
- Impartation of life, Rom. 8:11; Jn. 6:63 A.S.V.
- Regeneration, Jn. 3:5-8; Ti. 3:5.
- Authorship of Divine prophecy, 2 Pet. 1:21.
- The way in which the name of the Holy Spirit is coupled
in equality with that of God the Father and of Christ.
- In the apostolic commission, Mt. 28:19.
- Jn the administration of the church, 1 Cor. 12:4-6.
- In the apostolic benediction, 2 Cor. 13:14.
- THE MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT TO THE UNSAVED
- It is the work of the Holy Spirit to convict men of sin.
The Holy Spirit is the only One who can convince men of sin, who can take
the heart of a man (Jer. 17:9) and bring him to the realization of his own
need. But the Holy Spirit must do it through yielding vessels, Jn. 16:8-9
There is no limit to what God will do through any individual, provided he
does not touch the glory. We often not only touch it, but too often take it
Every conversion recorded in the book of Acts was accomplished through the
agency of men or women already saved.
- The Holy Spirit convicts men of the sin of unbelief.
- The Holy Spirit convicts in respect to righteousness,
- The Holy Spirit convicts the world of judgment, Jn.
16:11; cp. Col. 2:13-15.
- It is the work of the Holy Spirit to restrain. 2 Thes.
- The ministry of the Holy Spirit in regenerating. Ti. 3:5;
- Regeneration is the impartation of spiritual life to
those who are spiritually dead, Eph. 2:1.
- The Holy Spirit uses the written Word as the
instrument, 1 Pet. 1:23; Jn. 6:63.
- THE MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT TO THE BELIEVER
- The indwelling of the Spirit
- The fact of the indwelling, 1 Cor. 3:16 R.V.; 6:19 R.V.;
Gal. 4:6 R.V..: Jn. 14:16-17; Acts 5:32.
- The preaching of Pentecost was accompanied by the
promise of the gift of the Holy Spirit, Acts 2:38-39.
- In the record of the first preaching of the gospel to
the Gentiles, the gift of the Holy Spirit is emphasized, Acts 10:44-47;
Pentecost was not repeated, but there was a very special demonstration
of the Spirit, proving that the Holy Spirit was given to the Gentiles as
well as the Jews. Peter stated that the Gentiles received the Spirit
when they believed just as the Jews had done. Acts 11:17; 19:1-6; cp.
Rom. 8:9; see Jn. 6:64-66.
- The Scriptures contain the distinct promise that ALL
in this dispensation who believe on Him receive the Holy Spirit WHEN
they believe, Jn. 7:37-39.
- The fact of salvation is attested by His presence;
the quickening of the mortal body depends on the Spirit's indwelling,
- The apostles believed it, 1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19-20.
This revelation was made to a class of Christians who were living out of
fellowship with God in sin. The Spirit did not leave because of their
sinfulness, but the basis of appeal to holy living was upon the fact of
the indwelling Spirit.
- The permanency of the indwelling, Jn. 14:16-17.
- The satisfaction of the indwelling.
The indwelling Spirit is a source of full and everlasting satisfaction and
life, Jn. 4:14; cp. 7:37-39.
God has two kinds of Christians: receptacle Christians are only inflowing
Christians; channel Christians are outflowing Christians.
- The baptism of the Holy Spirit
Matthew 3:11-12 - this passage is a contrast of saved and unsaved. Acts
11:15-18 - this is a puzzling passage. Three things are said here by Peter:
- Verse 15 - the Holy Spirit fell on them.
- Peter was reminded of the promise of the Holy Spirit,
- The Spirit was given to the Gentiles as He was given to
the Jews at Pentecost.
In Acts 10:44-48, we read that the Spirit fell upon them (v.44) and they
heard them speak with tongues (v.46). But no reference is made here to
baptism with the Spirit. A comparison of Acts 2:1-4 shows that they spoke
with other tongues as they were filled with the Holy Spirit. Thus, the
falling of the Spirit and the infilling of the Spirit would seem to be
identical. The blessing came with the filling, but NOT with the baptism.
THE KEYSTONE PASSAGE OF THE BAPTISM OF THE SPIRIT IS 1
- The pronoun "we" is a reference to ALL saved people.
The word "we" doesn't represent some inner or favored group of Christians.
To give the strongest possible emphasis to the fact that every saved
person is included, the word "all" is also employed. In other words, every
believer is baptized by the Spirit of God.
- By the baptism of the Holy Spirit, the Christian is
united vitally and organically to Christ. Because of this union with
Christ, we partake of all that Christ is -- His life, His righteousness,
and His glory. Since the baptism with the Spirit is the organic placing of
the believer into Christ, it is that operation of God which establishes
every position and standing of the Christian. Thus, the baptism of the
Holy Spirit deals with position rather than with service.
- The baptism of the Spirit is one of several things
which happen to the believer when he is saved of which he is unconscious,
He is unconscious of the experience that he is being joined to the body of
Christ. Many things happen to us at the time of physical birth of which we
are not conscious.
- Nowhere are we told to seek the baptism of the Holy
Spirit. Nowhere do we read of two kinds of Christians, baptized and
If we can remember that the baptism of the Spirit has to do with our
position and relationship to the body of Christ, and that service is
smother ministry of the Spirit, namely, the filling of the Spirit, much
confusion will be avoided.
Power comes by filling; position, by baptism of the Holy Spirit. The
baptism of the Spirit is an assurance, not an exhortation.
- The filling of the Holy Spirit
The Bible teaches that there are two classes of Christians. We have the
contrast of those who walk in the light (1 Jn. 1:7) and those who walk as
men (1 Cor. 3:3); those who are carnal (1 Cor. 3:1-4) and those who are
spiritual (1 Cor. 2:15).
These distinctions indicate quality of daily life. To be a Spirit-filled
Christian is the desire of those who are seeking to live a God-honoring
- Why men should be filled with the Spirit
- Because it is the command of the Word, Eph. 5:18.
It is not optional with the believer, but a plain command to be obeyed.
The only person who speaks against it is the person who is satisfied
with living a cold, barren, useless Christian life. Without the filling
of the Spirit we may have activity but no spiritual power.
- Stephen was filled with the Spirit.
(1) To do social service in the early church, Acts 6:3, 8.
(2) To witness for Christ, Acts 6:10.
(3) To shine for Christ, Acts 6:15.
(4) To have a true spirit of forgiveness, Acts 7:55-60.
- Barnabas was filled with the Spirit for blessing to
the body of Christ, Acts 11:24.
- The apostles were filled with the Spirit that they
might speak the Word with boldness, Acts 2:4; cp. 37, 41; 4:13-14;
- Paul was filled with the Spirit to meet the attacks
of the enemies of the Word, Acts 13:6-10.
- The secret of the Spirit-filled life
- The crucial word in regard to the believer's attitude
toward spirituality is YIELD, Rom. 6:13. The English Revised Version of
6:13 is "present yourselves unto God. " "Yield" is in the present tense.
G. Campbell Morgan says yielding is
- a definite act;
- a voluntary act;
- a final act resulting in a continuous attitude.
A life spent in doing the will of God has no regrets.
- The Lord Jesus Christ is a perfect example of
yieldness, Heb. 10:5-7; Lk. 22:42; Phil. 2:8. We cannot produce such
Christlikeness, but we can allow another to produce it in us, Phil.
- He was willing to go where the Father chose, Heb.
- He was willing to be what the Father chose, Phil.
2:7; 2 Cor. 5:21; Heb. 12:2.
- He was willing to do what the Father chose, Phil.
- The Spirit-filled life is found in doing the will of
another, Phil. 2:13. Have we come to this place? De we want it?
- Jesus spoke of the yielding life as the abiding life,
Jn. 15:4-7; cp. 1 Jn. 3:24.
G. Campbell Morgan uses two words in connection with the Spirit-filled
- Abandonment, Rom. 6:13
- Abandonment to God for purity of life, Eph.
- Abandonment of the whole being to Christ that He
may offer it to God, Rom. 12:1.
The results of the Spirit-filled, life are:
- Effectual praying, Jn. 15:7.
- God-glorifying life, Jn. 15:8.
- Perpetual fruit, Jn. 15:16.
- Heavenly joy, Jn. 15:11.
Every unyielding life is perpetuating the crime of Satan, Isa.
- The sealing of the Holy Spirit
- The purpose of the seal.
- Authentication, Est. 8:8-10; Jn. 6:27; Lev. 8:23;
- Responsibilities, Eph. 1:13-14.
- A final transaction, Jn. 19:30; 17:4; Eph. 4:30; Jer.
- Security, Eph. 4:30; Dan. 6:17; Est. 8:8; Mt.
27:65-66; Jn. 10:28-29. Sealed by the Father plus the Son plus the Holy
- Ownership, Jer. 32:11-12; 2 Tim. 2:15-19; 1 Cor.
6:19-20; Gal. 6:17.
- The Holy Spirit is the seal, Eph. 1:13.
- The prerequisite to sealing is faith in the Lord Jesus
Christ, Eph. 1:13 R.V.
- The earnest of the Spirit, 2 Cor. 1:22; 5:5.
- The sealing is God's pledge that as surely as the
sinner has been purchased, his redemption will be completed, Rom. 3:23.
- The first-fruits of them that slept, 1 Cor. 15:20.
What are the first-fruits?
- Born of the Spirit, Jn. 3:5.
- Baptized of the Spirit, 1 Cor. 12:13.
- Indwelt by the Spirit, Acts 5:32.
- Sealed by the Spirit, Eph. 4:30.
We are sealed by the Spirit of God whether we recognize it or not.
This should be a blessed realization and consolation.
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