You teach that both the Father and the Son are God. What about the Holy Spirit? Isn't the Holy Spirit also God — the Third Person within the Trinity?


The short answer is, no — the Holy Spirit is neither God nor a Person. Rather, the Holy Spirit is God’s POWER emanating from God the Father AND from God the Son.

The Trinitarian concept of Greek Orthodox Christianity is that God is one Person who manifests Himself in three “modes of being” — the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. They basically teach that God is only one BEING — but that He can represent himself in three different ways — as a person can be functioning in his capacity as a bank executive, as a father and as a husband. However, as we have seen in previous Q&As, (Who Was Jesus When On Earth?, What Was Jesus Before His Birth as a Man?, Is Jesus God? and How Can There Be Two Gods?) this concept is biblically incorrect. God is not just one Being, but God is a Family, consisting of TWO Beings — the Father and the Son. God is not schizophrenic, nor is He suffering from a bipolar personality, speaking to Himself in His “capacity” as Father to His “capacity” as Son, and vice versa.

The Trinitarian concept of Roman Catholic Christianity, which has been almost universally adopted by Protestant churches, is that God is “one Person in three Persons.” This is an utterly confusing and illogical idea, which makes no sense at all. How can one person consist of three persons? God is not one Being, but a FAMILY, consisting of TWO persons–not three–and the Holy Spirit is NOT a Person.

Also, the Roman Catholic church teaches that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are all equal in authority. This is biblically incorrect, as we saw in the previous, above-quoted Q&As (and we will again address this point herein). The Father is the HIGHEST in the Godhead.

We discuss the erroneous Trinitarian concepts of the Roman Catholic church and most Protestant churches in our free booklet, “Is God a Trinity?”. We show that even Roman Catholic and Protestant theologians admit that the Trinity is nowhere taught in the Bible:

“The Swiss Protestant theologian Karl Barth… wrote in, ‘Doctrine of the Word of God,’ p. 437: ‘The Bible lacks the express declaration that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are of equal essence and therefore in an equal sense God Himself. And the other express declaration is also lacking that God is God thus and only thus, i.e., as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. These two express declarations which go beyond the witness of the Bible are the twofold content of the church doctrine of the Trinity.’…

“Dr. William Newton Clarke, who wrote a book entitled, ‘An Outline of Christian Theology’… states… on page 167, when discussing the first few verses of the first chapter of the book of John: ‘There is no Trinity in [John’s prologue]; but there is a distinction in the Godhead, a duality in God… ground for the divineness of the Spirit is nowhere shown. Thought in the New Testament is never directed to that end’…

“German theologian Karl Rahner… [said] in a book called, ‘The Trinity,’ on page 22: ‘…in reality the Scriptures do not explicitly present a doctrine of the “imminent” Trinity (even John’s prologue is no such doctrine).’

“… the New Catholic Encyclopedia supports Professor Rahner’s and Prof. Barth’s statements. In an article entitled, ‘Trinity,’… [it admits:] ‘The [Old Testament] clearly does not envisage God’s spirit as a person, neither in the strictly philosophical sense, nor in the Semitic sense. God’s spirit is simply God’s power… The majority of [New Testament] texts reveal God’s spirit as something, not someone; this is especially seen in the parallelism between the spirit and the power of God…'”

After explaining in our booklet that the Roman Catholic church adopted the concept of the Trinity from pagan Greek philosophers, such as Plato and Aristotle, we point out that none of the New Testament writers include the Holy Spirit, when passing on greetings from God. They ONLY refer in that context to the Father and the Son. This would have been quite an insult, if the Holy Spirit were also God.

We continue quoting from our free booklet, “Is God a Trinity?”:

“Another Biblical proof against the Trinity is that the Holy Spirit is nowhere identified as God. No one is recorded in Scripture as having prayed to the Holy Spirit.”

As we pointed out in the previous, above-quoted Q&As, we are generally to pray to the Father, as He is the Highest in the God-Family. But we do this in the name of Jesus Christ (John 15:16), who is our only Mediator (1 Timothy 2:5-6). In addition, there are a few recorded incidents when Christians prayed to Christ (compare Acts 7:59-60). But there is no record in the Bible that anyone ever prayed to the Holy Spirit.

Let us focus on another important proof that the Holy Spirit CANNOT be God or a person. We quote again from our booklet, “Is God a Trinity?”:

“Notice in Matthew 1:18: ‘Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.’

“God’s inspired Word tells us clearly that the Holy Spirit made Mary pregnant. Notice the words of an angel to Joseph, as recorded in Matthew 1:20: ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived… in her is of the Holy Spirit.’’

“Turn now to Luke 1:32 and 35, where we find more of the inspired words of the angel to Mary: ‘He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David… 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.’ These Scriptures in Matthew and Luke tell us that, IF the Holy Spirit were a person and God, then Christ would have been the SON of the Holy Spirit, and NOT of the Father.

“However, John 1:14 says that it was the Father who begot Christ: ‘And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth’… we see that GOD the FATHER begot Christ through the power of His Spirit. This proves that the Holy Spirit cannot be a person—otherwise, we would have a contradiction here, with Christ having two fathers—the ‘Father’ and the ‘Holy Spirit’—and with the ‘person’ and third member of the ‘Trinity,’ the Holy Spirit, being Christ’s ‘main’ Father.

“Remember, too, that the angel told Mary in the book of Luke that Christ would be called the Son of the Highest. If the Holy Spirit were a person, then the Holy Spirit by which Mary was impregnated would be the HIGHEST in the Godhead. This, of course, is absurd! No one who believes in the Trinity has EVER stated that the Holy Spirit is the highest! Quite to the contrary, they claim that the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are all EQUAL. That none is HIGHER than the other. “

Another proof that the Holy Spirit cannot be a person is the fact that the Holy Spirit, which dwells in converted Christians, is not only the Holy Spirit of the Father (compare John 14:16-17), but also of Jesus Christ (Galatians 4:6; Philippians 1;19). Quoting from our booklet, “Is God a Trinity?”:

“That the Spirit of the Father and of Christ dwells in us becomes very clear when reading Romans 8:9: ‘But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit if indeed the Spirit of GOD dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of CHRIST, he is not His.’ Here we read that the Spirit of God dwells in us, and when we do not have the Spirit of Christ dwelling in us, we are not even Christians…

“Notice Christ’s words in John 14:23: ‘If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.’ Both the Father and Jesus Christ live in us. John 14:16-18 confirms too that not only the Father, but also Jesus Christ live in us… through the Holy Spirit…”

Remember this: The Spirit of the Father and of the Son lives in us. If the Holy Spirit were a person, then two persons would live in us (the Holy Spirit of the Father and the Holy Spirit of the Son). In that case, the Godhead would not consist of only three persons, but of four — God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit of the Father, and God the Holy Spirit of the Son. But no one teaches, to our knowledge, that God consists of four persons.

In passing, it is true that the Bible speaks of “one” Spirit, as it speaks of the fact that the Father and Jesus Christ are “one.” We explain the concept of “oneness” in our booklet, “Is God a Trinity?”:

“When we read that there is one Spirit, then the reference is to the oneness or harmony between God the Father and Jesus Christ. It is exactly the same when Christ said, ‘I and the Father are one’ (John 10:30). Christ did not mean, the Father and He were ‘one’ being—but that they were ‘one’ in purpose and goal and mindset and character. When Christ spoke these words, He was clearly a separate person from God the Father. Christ said in John 17:11, that we all should be one, as the Father and Christ are one in spirit—not in the sense that we all would become one being, but rather, that we all be of the same spirit. God the Father and Christ are one in spirit, and so are we to become one in spirit.”

When the Bible speaks of “one” Spirit, it cannot and does not mean that the Holy Spirit is one God being. Rather, the Holy Spirit is “one” in that it is God’s power, emanating from both God the Father and Jesus Christ, and the Father and Christ are “one” — totally unified.

Another biblical proof that the Holy Spirit CANNOT be a person can be found in John 7:37-39. It reads, in the Authorized Version: “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirsts, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive; for the Holy Ghost [better: Spirit] was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)”

Note that the word “given” is in italics—this means, it is not in the original Greek; it was added by the translator. Other translators recognize this fact and render the passage in quite a different way. The New Revised Standard Version states: “…for as yet there was no Spirit, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” The New American Bible says: “There was, of course, no Spirit yet…” The New Jerusalem Bible reads: “…for there was no Spirit as yet…” The Moffat translation says: “…as yet there was no Spirit…”

When we check this in the Interlinear translation from the Greek, we find the following phrase, “…for not yet was Spirit Holy, because Jesus not yet was glorified.”

German translations are all fairly consistent in their renderings. The revised Luther Bible, the Elberfelder Bible and the Menge Bible all state, “The Spirit was not yet there…” The Zuercher Bible even states, “…the Holy Spirit did not exist yet…” They point out in the Appendix: “Some have translated, ‘the Holy Spirit was not yet given,’ because they were offended by the literal original text.”

But how could this be?

We explain this, as follows, in our free booklet, “Is God a Trinity?”:

“.. only a glorified God being can give His Holy Spirit to others. When Christ spoke those words, the Holy Spirit of the Father was clearly there and dwelling in Him — but Christ was referring here to Himself. He said, ‘Let him who thirsts come to ME.’ And Christ was a man when He said that, and as a man, having given up His glory, He could not give the Holy Spirit, emanating from Him as a glorified God being, to others. Remember, it was the Holy Spirit of the FATHER (as distinguished from the Holy Spirit of Christ) that dwelled in Christ, and through which Christ did the marvelous works (cp. Acts 10:38-39).

“For Christ to bestow His Holy Spirit on others, He needed to be glorified first… As long as Christ was not glorified, He had no Holy Spirit of His own to bestow on others. That’s why the Holy Spirit of the glorified Christ was not there yet — ONLY the Holy Spirit of the Father was there.

“But then, after Christ’s resurrection and glorification, both the Father and the Son dwell in us through their Spirit — the Holy Spirit — which emanates or proceeds from both the Father and the Son.”

In our free booklet, “Is God a Trinity?,” we are also discussing several passages which are sometimes used to “prove” the Trinitarian concept. But aside from the fact that Catholic and Protestant theologians admit that the Bible nowhere teaches this concept, we show in our booklet why those passages do not support such a teaching.

For instance, we discuss a spurious uninspired text, to be found in the first letter of John in some older Bible renditions. That passage was added by deceived copyists to “prove” the concept of the Trinity. We also debunk the erroneous and quite silly argument that the Holy Spirit must be a person, since it is referred to as “He” in the New King James Bible. This rendering is just a matter of an arbitrary choice by some modern English translators (The Authorized Version does refer to the Holy Spirit as “it,” not “He.”).

It is important that we understand that God is NOT a Trinity. This false concept does not only convey a totally wrong picture of God — it also hides the purpose of man’s existence. Most don’t understand and believe that it is man’s destiny to become God.

God is a Family — presently consisting of the Father and the Son. Through the power of His Holy Spirit, we can become a part of God’s Family. Rather than being a closed Trinity since and for all eternity, God is enlarging His Family by reproducing Himself in man. The concept of the Trinity that teaches that God is — and that He has always been — Father, Son and Holy Spirit, hides and obscures the fact that God is a GROWING Family.

In the beginning, there were two God beings, God the Father and Jesus Christ the Son. But Christ is also referred to as the FIRSTBORN among MANY brethren. It is the potential of man to become members of the God-Family — sons and daughters of God the Father, and brothers and sisters of Jesus Christ.

We will discuss this awesome truth in a subsequent Q&A.

Lead Writer: Norbert Link

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