Listen:  

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

We see the presence of the Holy Spirit on the earth in only the second verse in the Bible.  Genesis 1:2 says, “And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.”  The presence of the Spirit was implied in Genesis 1:1 which says, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”  The Hebrew word for God here is ‘elohiym’ which is plural for ‘el’ or ‘eli’ which means God.  So, using the plural form shows the presence of a God that exists in a plural form: namely the Father, the Son, and the Spirit.

When Moses spoke to the Lord about the tremendous burden of taking care of all the Israelites that had left Egypt, the Lord had Moses pick out seventy elders to help him shoulder this great responsibility.  We read in Numbers 11:25, “And the LORD came down in a cloud, and spake unto him, and took of the spirit that was upon him, and gave it unto the seventy elders: and it came to pass, that, when the spirit rested upon them, they prophesied, and did not cease.”  This is an example of how the Spirit came upon men; to rest upon them so that they might serve the Lord.  We have many examples of the Spirit of God coming upon men in the Old Testament.  The Spirit of God came upon Balaam in Numbers 24:2; He came upon Othniel in Judges 3:9-10; He came upon Gideon in Judges 6:34.  The list goes on and on.  While most people think of Samson as always being super strong, it was only at times when the Spirit of the Lord came upon him that he became so powerful as we read in Judges 14:5-6, “Then went Samson down, and his father and his mother, to Timnath, and came to the vineyards of Timnath: and, behold, a young lion roared against him.  And the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon him, and he rent him as he would have rent a kid…”

Now let’s read the words of the Lord Jesus in John 14:26, “But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.”  Later the Lord said in John 16:7, “Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.”  While it has been shown that the Spirit had indeed already come to the earth, it was after the death, burial, resurrection, and ascension of Christ that the Spirit was sent to indwell every believer.  We read in John 7:38-39, “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 was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

This is what makes the church age so unique.  We now live in a day where Christ is now glorified in Heaven and the Holy Spirit of God indwells every believer.  Instead of the Spirit coming upon believers as He did in the Old Testament, in the church age He now lives inside each believer.  The Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 8:9, “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.”  Could that be any clearer?  The Spirit indwells every believer and anyone who does not have the Spirit dwelling in him is not the Lord’s.

In his great prayer of repentance and confession, King David prayed in Psalms 51:11, “…take not thy holy spirit from me.”  This is a prayer that believers today should not pray.  Why?  Because we are assured by the Word of God that believers are sealed by the Holy Spirit as we read in Ephesians 4:30, “And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.”  (101.4)