There is a ghost spoken of in the bible that has intrigued people for thousands of years. The bible calls it The Holy Ghost. When I believed in The Trinity (Three persons in the Godhead), The Holy Ghost was always the most mysterious person of the three. I just couldn’t figure him out. I couldn’t figure out his relationship to the Father and the Son, I couldn’t figure out why he remained nameless. As far as I was concerned, it was an unsolved mystery. When the Lord opened my understanding to the revelation of God in Christ, I saw The Holy Ghost for the first time for who He really was.
The words, “Ghost” and “Spirit” are interchangeable in the bible. They are also interchangeable in our dictionaries. The word, “Ghost”, in most dictionaries, refers to “the spirit of a dead person, or a departed one”. Interestingly enough, Jesus had told his disciples about a Ghost that would come into the world – after He had departed from them.
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…
John confirmed that the Holy Ghost could not come until Jesus had departed and been glorified:
John 7: 37 – 39 In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. 38 He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. 39 (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.)
Did you ever notice that when Jesus died, the bible says He “gave up the ghost”? Interesting….
Mark 15: 37 And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.
While He was with His disciples, He WAS their comfort and shield, but He knew He had to die for our sins, and thereby physically depart from the world. But He promises “another Comforter”, not another person – but another comforter, or a comforter of another form. Adding to this, He told them that they ALREADY KNEW this “comforter” that was to come. He told them that the comforter already dwelt WITH them, but was going to be IN them. Take a look:
John 14: 16, 17 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; FOR HE DWELLETH WITH YOU, and SHALL BE IN YOU.
Who did they already know? Who already dwelt with them? If there is still any doubt as to whom Jesus is referring to, check out what He had to say:
John 14: 18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
Wow! The Holy Ghost is none other than Jesus coming to abide with us in Spirit! This is how John puts it:
John 14: 26 – 28 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. 27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and COME AGAIN UNTO YOU.
As a matter of fact, in John 14, Jesus reveals to His disciples that He is both Father and Holy Ghost. Father in visible manifestation (John 14: 9), and Holy Ghost as the one who will come and dwell with them (John 14: 16 – 18). Have you ever wondered how you can have the power to overcome sin and really make an impact for God? When we receive Jesus, we receive power. How do we receive Jesus, if not in Spirit? And how do we receive power, if not by The Holy Ghost? Check out these two passages:
John 1: 12 But as many as received him, TO THEM GAVE HE POWER to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. (Verse 13 makes it clear: they were not born of the flesh; they were born of the Spirit of God)
Acts 1: 8 But YE SHALL RECEIVE POWER, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
And here is the link to these two verses; this might just make you shout: It is Jesus Christ Himself who baptizes us with The Holy Ghost! Do you recall what John the Baptist declared?
Mark 1: 8 I indeed have baptized you with water: but HE SHALL BAPTIZE YOU with the Holy Ghost.
When we are baptized into Christ, we are promised to “put on Christ”, or receive the Spirit of Christ:
Galatians 3: 27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
And when you put on Christ, you receive the power of The Holy Spirit over the lusts of the flesh:
Romans 13: 14 But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
This is not a denominational lesson; it is a BIBLE lesson. You must have the Spirit of Christ to be saved:
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.
If you will ask, Jesus Christ Himself will come to you:
Revelation 3: 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
And how will He come to you, unless it’s in Spirit?
There is nothing to be afraid of in this ghost story. What once was a mystery to me has now been solved:
Colossians 1: 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is CHRIST IN YOU, the hope of glory:
Who has promised to dwell in us? Who has promised to be with us always until the end? Who said he would comfort us? Who is this Spirit that baptizes and empowers us? 2
Corinthians 3: 17 Now THE LORD IS THAT SPIRIT: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
This is why it is so important to be baptized in the singular name of Jesus Christ; for when you take on HIS NAME, He rewards you by baptizing you with HIS SPIRIT.
(See Acts 2:1 – 4, 38; John 3: 5; 14:18; Rom. 8: 9)