By Amos Binney and Daniel Steele
There are three principal and fundamental errors extant respecting the Holy Ghost:
1. It is simply another name for the Father.
2. It is a mere figure of speech for the influence of the Deity.
The author of "Ecce Homo" regards the Holy Ghost as the esprit de corps, or the enthusiasm of the Society of Christians. The various forms of Rationalism regard him as an energy of God and not as a person, that is, a thinking and intelligent being. (87. What is said of his mediation? What errors extant respecting the Holy Ghost? How are these confuted?)
3. It is a mere creature.
In confutation of the first two errors, our attention is arrested by the important fact that this Spirit is frequently associated in the Scriptures with the Father and Son, the distinct personality of both of which is not denied. See the arguments under Trinity.
His personality is shown not only by baptizing and blessing in his NAME, Matt. 28:19; II Cor. 13:14, but also from his feeling love, Rom. 15:30, and grief, Eph. 4:30; from his act of permitting, Acts 14:16; abiding, John 14:16; teaching, verse 26, and I John 2:27; appointing, Acts 13:2; sending, verse 4; interceding, Rom. 8:26; convincing of sin John 16:8; regenerating, John 6:63; Titus 3:5; witnessing, Rom. 8:16; sanctifying, I Cor. 6:11; inspiring, II Pet. 1:21; and especially by the fact that sin against him is unpardonable Matt. 12:31.
In confutation of the third heresy, the third person in the association has all the names, perfections, and works, peculiar to the Godhead, ascribed to him, and is, therefore, essentially Divine.
The Holy Ghost is called God, Acts 5:3-4; (88. What acts show that he is a person? What scriptures ascribe to him the name of Deity?) Lord, II Cor. 3:17. He is eternal Heb. 9:14; omnipresent, Ps. 139:7; I Cor. 3:16; omniscient , I Cor. 2:10; omnipotent, I Cor. 12:4-11.
To him is ascribed wisdom, Eph. 1:17; goodness, Ps. 143:10; creation, Job 26:13; 33:4; especially of the human nature of Christ, Matt. 1:20; Luke 1:35; inspiration, II Pet. 1:21; resurrection of Christ, Rom. 8:11; I Pet. 3:18.
Both the divinity and personality of the Holy Ghost are proved by showing that JEHOVAH of the Old Testament, (LORD, in the English version,) and the Holy Spirit of the New, are the same. Compare Acts 28:25-27, with Isa. 6:8-9; also Heb. 3:7, with Exod. 17:7; also Heb. 10:15, 16, with Jer. 31:31-34.
But as the divinity of the Spirit is inseparably connected with the subject of the Trinity, to extend this evidence further would be superfluous.
The Greek Church denies the procession of the Holy Ghost from the Son, (filioque,) and teaches that he proceeds from the Father only. Refuted in John 15:26; 20:22; Rom. 8:9. (89. Attributes? Acts? With what doctrines is this essentially connected? Doctrine of the Greek Church?)