Lucia's Blog: THE BIBLICAL DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT: NAMES AND DESCRIPTIONS, HIS ROLE IN THE OLD TESTAMENT - PART TWO
Google Logo
Image Caption goes here.

Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9

Monday, June 2, 2014

THE BIBLICAL DOCTRINE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT: NAMES AND DESCRIPTIONS, HIS ROLE IN THE OLD TESTAMENT - PART TWO




NAMES AND DESCRIPTIONS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

In the Bible there are a number of names and descriptions given to this Person of the Godhead.  Let us consider some of those names and descriptions that we may recognize the Person of the Holy Spirit as we read about Him:
  1. The Holy Spirit:  Psalm 51; Isaiah 63:10, 11; Matthew 1:18, 20; 3:11; 12:32 and Acts 2:4,38
  2. The Spirit:  Numbers 11:26; 27:18; Chronicles 12:18; Ezekiel 2:2; 3:12; Matt. 10:20 and Acts 2:4
  3. His Spirit:  Numbers 11:29; Isaiah 34:16 and 48:16
  4. Spirit of God:  Gen. 1:2; Ex. 31:3; 35:31; Numbers 24:2; Matt. 3:16; 12:28
  5. Spirit of The LORD:  Judges 3:10; 6:34; I Samuel 10:6; 16:3; Isaiah 11:2; 61:1 Acts 5:9
  6. Spirit of wisdom and understanding:  Isaiah 11:2
  7. Spirit of counsel and strength:  Isaiah 11:2
  8. Spirit of knowledge and the fear of  the LORD:  Isaiah 11:2
  9. My Spirit:  Gen. 6:3; Isa. 30:1; 42:1 and Acts 2:17-18
  10. Spirit of Truth:  John 14:17; 15:26 and 16:13
  11. Helper:  John 14:16; 15:26
  12. Spirit of glory:  I Peter 4:14
  13. Spirit of Jesus:  Acts 16:6-7


THE HOLY SPIRIT IN THE OLD TESTAMENT

Although we read of The Holy Spirit being very active in the New Testament, it might surprise some that the Holy Spirit was also active and vital in the Old Testament.  We know for a fact that the Holy Spirit was dynamic in the Early church, in the life of our Lord Jesus Christ and the apostles.  Let us consider some Scriptures that show the Holy Spirit engaged in active work in the Old Testament:

I.  CREATION

We know that the Holy Spirit has always been in existence since He is God.  We see Him at work in the book of Genesis.
  1. Genesis 1:1-3:  "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light.'"
This account shows us all three persons in the Godhead (the Trinity) active in creation.
  • God created the heavens and the earth.
  • The Spirit of God was moving...
  • Then God said... (The Word of the Son)
It is undeniable that the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.  Likewise in Job we read of the role of the Spirit in CREATION.  "By His breath the heavens are cleared; His hand has pierced the fleeing serpent."  Job 26:13.  The Spirit in this verse is the "breath of wind."  We also see a parallel of this verse in Job 33:4, "The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life." This verse calls to our minds the creation account and the role of the Holy Spirit in creation, "Then God said, 'Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.'"  Genesis 1:2.  Notice that the Holy Spirit is present when we read the words "Us" and "Our."  This is an undeniable TRUTH.


II. THE HOLY SPIRIT WAS WITH JOSEPH WHEN HE INTERPRETED THE PHARAOH'S DREAM

We all know the Bible account of Joseph and how his brothers hated him.  We remember also his father Jacob's love for him.  We know why his brothers sold him into slavery.  We read of Joseph's righteousness. What might be a surprise to many is that the Holy Spirit was at work and played an important role in the life of Joseph.  Let us consider the role the Holy Spirit played in Joseph's life while he was in Egypt:
  1. Genesis 41:16:  "The seven good cows are seven years; and the seven good ears are seven years; the dreams are one and the same."  We are all aware that Joseph gives all the honor and credit to God when he was about to give the interpretation of The Pharaoh's dream.  The following text is what the Pharaoh, Egypt's leader had to say about Joseph:  "Then Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find a man like this, in whom is a divine spirit?"  Genesis 41:38.  The Holy Spirit was working in Joseph the same way we see HIM working in the New Testament.  The Holy Spirit is thus helping Joseph interpret dreams as well as revealing prophecy as seen in the book of Acts.  One example of this in the New Testament is Acts 2:17-19.  Here the words "divine spirit" can be easily translated as "God's Spirit."

III.  THE HOLY SPIRIT HELPED DANIEL INTERPRET DREAMS

The same way that the Holy Spirit helped Joseph interpret dreams, He also helped Daniel interpret dreams and reveal prophesy.  Daniel said to Nebuchadnezar:  "However, there is a God in heaven who reveals mysteries, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will take place in the latter days. This was your dream and the visions in your mind while on your bed."  Daniel 2:28.  Also, "But finally Daniel came in before me, whose name is Belteshazzar according to the name of my god, and in whom is a spirit of the holy gods; and I related the dream to him, saying..."  Daniel 4:8.  We can clearly see the Holy Spirit as a person of the Godhead here as it is also mentioned in Luke 1:67-70 and 2 Peter 1:21.


IV.  THE BUILDING OF THE TABERNACLE

When the Israelites were building the tabernacle, the Holy Spirit was at work.  Again, the Holy Spirit was working in the same consistent way as in the NT.  Let us look at the following verses:
  1. Exodus 35:3-36:  "Then Moses said to the sons of Israel, 'See, the Lord has called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah.  And He has filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding and in knowledge and in all craftsmanship; to make designs for working in gold and in silver and in bronze, and in the cutting of stones for settings and in the carving of wood, so as to perform in every inventive work.  He also has put in his heart to teach, both he and Oholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan.  He has filled them with skill to perform every work of an engraver and of a designer and of an embroiderer, in blue and in purple and in scarlet material, and in fine linen, and of a weaver, as performers of every work and makers of designs.'"
We can easily see that these men were given gifts of wisdom, understanding and knowledge which are from the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit assisted or helped them in the building of the tabernacle.  You can also find this regarding the Spirit's role in the building in Deuteronomy 34:9 and Numbers 27:15-23.


V.  THE SPIRIT CAME UPON A GENTILE PROPHET, BALAAM
  1. Numbers 24:2:  "And Balaam lifted up his eyes and saw Israel camping tribe by tribe; and the Spirit of God came upon him."  Also, Numbers 22:9, 13, 20, 22

VI.  THE HOLY SPIRIT WAS IN THE DAYS OF THE JUDGES
  1. Judges 3:10:  "The Spirit of the Lord came upon him, and he judged Israel. When he went out to war, the Lord gave Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand, so that he prevailed over Cushan-rishathaim."  The person whom the Holy Spirit came upon was Othoniel one of the Judges of Israel.
  2. Judges 4:4:  "Now Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, was judging Israel at that time."
  3. Judges 6:34:  "Now the Spirit of the Lord came upon Jephthah, so that he passed through Gilead and Manasseh; then he passed through Mizpah of Gilead, and from Mizpah of Gilead he went on to the sons of Ammon."
  4. Judges 13:24-25:  "Then the woman gave birth to a son and named him Samson; and the child grew up and the Lord blessed him.  And the Spirit of the Lord began to stir him in Mahaneh-dan, between Zorah and Eshtaol."
  5. Judges 14:6:  "The Spirit of the Lord came upon him mightily, so that he tore him as one tears a young goat though he had nothing in his hand; but he did not tell his father or mother what he had done."

VII.  IN THE LIFE OF KING SAUL
  1. I Samuel 10:10:  "When they came to the hill there, behold, a group of prophets met him; and the Spirit of God came upon him mightily, so that he prophesied among them."
  2. I Samuel 11:6:  "Then the Spirit of God came upon Saul mightily when he heard these words, and he became very angry."
  3. I Samuel 16:14:  "Now the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord terrorized him."

VIII.  IN THE LIFE OF KING DAVID
  1. I Samuel 16:13:  "Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward. And Samuel arose and went to Ramah."
  2. I Samuel 18:12:  "Now Saul was afraid of David, for the Lord was with him but had departed from Saul."
  3. Psalm 51:11:  "Do not cast me away from Your presence and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me."
  4. Psalm 139:7:  "Where can I go from Your Spirit?  Or where can I flee from Your presence?"
  5. II Samuel 23:1-3:  "Now these are the last words of David.  David the son of Jesse declares, the man who was raised on high declares, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, “The Spirit of the Lord spoke by me, and His word was on my tongue.  The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spoke to me, ‘He who rules over men righteously, Who rules in the fear of God..."

IX.  THE WORDS THAT THE PROPHETS SPOKE TO THE PEOPLE
  1. Isaiah 61:1:  "The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners."
  2. Jeremiah 1:4:  "Now the word of the Lord came to me saying..."
  3. Ezekiel 2:1-2:  "Then He said to me, “Son of man, stand on your feet that I may speak with you!”  As He spoke to me the Spirit entered me and set me on my feet; and I heard Him speaking to me."
  4. Ezekiel 11:1:  "Moreover, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the east gate of the Lord’s house which faced eastward. And behold, there were twenty-five men at the entrance of the gate, and among them I saw Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, leaders of the people."
  5. Ezekiel 11:24-25:  "And the Spirit lifted me up and brought me in a vision by the Spirit of God to the exiles in Chaldea. So the vision that I had seen left me.  Then I told the exiles all the things that the Lord had shown me."
  6. 2 Peter 1:20-21:  "But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation,  for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God."

XI. IN THE REBUILDING OF THE TEMPLE
  1. Zechariah 4:6-7:  "Then he said to me, 'This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel saying, Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ says the Lord of hosts. ‘What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become a plain; and he will bring forth the top stone with shouts of “Grace, grace to it!'"

IN CONCLUSION:  It is very clear that the role and involvement of the HOLY SPIRIT in the Old Testament was evident and vital.  This must not be a surprise to us since the Holy Spirit is God and our God is always actively involved in the lives of His children.  In my next study, I will consider the questions of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament.


Luci