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HOLY SPIRIT: Is He a PERSON or an ACTIVE FORCE? II Cor 3:17

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HOLY SPIRIT: Is He a PERSON or an ACTIVE FORCE? II Cor 3:17

Watchtower Teaching: The WT claims that the HS is neither a person nor God, but an impersonal ‘active force’ to achieve God’s will, like electricity or radio waves.

Bible Teaching: The Holy Spirit is fully God and has personality as He can be blasphemed.

The Holy Spirit has the three attributes of personality, those being: mind, emotions and will.

An ‘active force’ does not have personal attributes. The WT’s claim of the Holy Spirit being an active force is disproven if the Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit has mind,emotions & will.

1. The Holy Spirit has a mind.

(1) ‘He that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit’. (Romans 8:27). The word ‘mind’ means ‘way of thinking’, something which is only true of a person.

(2) ‘The things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.’ (I Corinthians 2:11).

QUESTION: How can the Holy Spirit know the things of God if the Spirit does not have a mind? A force does not know things. To know requires a mind.

(3) The Spirit searcheth all things’ (I Corinthians 2:10). The Greek word for ‘search’ means to thoroughly investigate a matter, something only a mind can do.

2) The Holy Spirit has emotions

(4) The Holy Spirit loves: ‘I beseech you..through the love of the Spirit’.(Rom 15:30 NWT).

(5) ‘Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God’. (Ephesians 4:30) The Holy Spirit is grieved (made sad) when believers sin. Grief is an emotion that one feels. A force can’t be grieved.

3) The Holy Spirit has a will. He performs personal acts.

(6) The Holy Spirit distributes spiritual gifts ‘to every man severally as he will.’(I Cor.12:11) The phrase ‘he wills’ in Greek means ‘a decision of the will after previous deliberation’. The Holy Spirit chooses which gifts each believer receives. A force has no such will,
nor ability to make decisions.

(7) The Holy Spirit commands: ‘The Spirit bade me go with them’ (Acts 11:12)

(8) The Holy Spirit forbids:‘forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia’.Acts 16:6

(9) The Holy Spirit speaks: ‘The Spirit said to Philip, Go near.’ (Acts 8:29)

‘The Holy Ghost said, separate me Barnabus and Saul’. (Acts 13:2)

‘The Spirit speaketh expressly’. (I Timothy 4:1).

QUESTION: How do you explain the WT view of the Holy Spirit being an impersonal force, with the Bible’s teaching that the Holy Spirit has a mind that can know, emotions that can feel love and grief, and a will to make decisions?

(10) The Holy Spirit testifies: ‘He shall testify of me’. (John 15:26).
The same Greek word for testify (or bear witness) used here, is also used of:

a) The disciples testifying about Christ in John 15:27.
b) John the Baptist bearing witness to the truth in John 5:33.
c) God the Father bore witness to Cornelius’ (and Gentiles’) conversion by giving them the Holy Spirit. (Acts 15:8)

Just as the disciples, John and God the Father (who are all persons) testified or bore witness, so the Holy Spirit bears witness about Christ. A force cannot bear witness, only a person can. (The Holy Spirit bears witness in heaven and on earth - I John 5:7,8)

(11) The Holy Spirit intercedes or prays for believers.‘The Spirit itself makes intercession for us with groanings’. (Romans 8:26). 

Just as Jesus Christ (a person) intercedes for believers (Romans 8:34; Hebrews 7:25), so the Holy Spirit (as a person) intercedes
(same Greek word) for believers. A force cannot pray for another; only a person can pray.

(12) The Holy Spirit teaches believers. (‘he shall teach you all things’. John 14:26)

(13) The Holy Spirit hears. ‘Whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak.’ (John 16:13)

(14) The Holy Spirit shows us things. ‘he....shall show it unto you’. (John 16:15)

(15) The Holy Spirit restrains sin. ‘My Spirit shall not always strive with man’(Genesis 6:3)

(16) The Holy Spirit can be blasphemed.‘he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost’.Mk3:29

People cannot be blasphemed. We can only be slandered. Only God can be blasphemed.

By Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit being blasphemed means we’ve proved the Trinity.

(a) God the Father can be blasphemed. (Revelation 13:6; 16:9)
(b) God the Son can be blasphemed. (Luke 22:65)
‘And many other things blasphemously they spake against him’.
(c) God the Holy Spirit can be blasphemed. (Matthew 12:31)
‘Blasphemy against the Holy Spirit shall not be forgiven unto men.’

(17) The Holy Spirit can be lied to (Acts 5:3). Ananias and Sapphira lied to the Holy Spirit.
QUESTION: Have you ever lied to electricity and asked electricity to forgive you?

(18) The Holy Spirit cries in our hearts, Abba, Father. (Galatians 4:6)

(19) The Holy Spirit approves some decisions:
‘It seemed good to the Holy Ghost and to us’. (Acts 15:28)

(20) The Holy Spirit invites people to be saved:‘The Spirit & the bride say Come’Rev 22:17

(21) The Holy Spirit fills us (Ephesians 5:18) just as God may fill us (Ephesians 3:19).

(22) The Holy Spirit uses personal pronouns to describe Himself: John 15:26; 16:13;(he):

‘The Holy Spirit said, Separate me Barnabus. . .’ (Acts 13:2).

The Holy Spirit considers Himself a person, not a personification.

Watchtower Objection:
The main reason the JWs say that the Holy Spirit is an ‘active force’ is because the Greek word for ‘spirit’ (pneuma) is neuter.

Answer: This is faulty reasoning, because 1)the gender of a word relates to the grammatical form of the word, not to its sex or physical gender. Because a word is grammatically neuter does not mean that the object is an ‘it’ or of neuter sex.
(Source: Elements of NT Greek, J W Wenham, 1979, p.8).

For example, in Greek, ‘children’ is a neuter word, ‘desert’ is a feminine word, etc.and

2) In John 15:26 and 16:13, the neuter noun ‘pneuma’ is referred to by the masculine pronoun ‘ekeinos’ (1565=that one, masculine) recognising the Holy Spirit’s masculine personality. ‘He (ekeinos) shall testify of me’ (15:26); ‘when he (ekeinos), the Spirit of
truth shall come’ (16:13). Note: ‘ekeine’ is feminine ‘that one’, and ‘ekeino’ is neuter).

(23) The Holy Spirit comforts (Gk: parakletos) believers. John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7. This same Greek word ‘parakletos’ (3875) is used of Christ who has personality in John 14:16 and I John 2:1. ‘Another Comforter’ (Gk: allos parakletos, John 14:16) means
‘another of the same kind’ as Christ, in contrast to ‘heteros’ (2087) meaning ‘another of a different kind’. As Christ has Deity and Personality, so does the Holy Spirit. To comfort requires empathy, understanding, love, compassion and concern for another’s
well-being, all being attributes of personality.

Conclusion: Hence,the Holy Spirit is a person because 1) He has mind, emotions,& will. 2) Personal pronouns are used of Him. 3) He performs personal acts.4) He associates with the Father and Son in the Baptism formula, Apostolic benediction and as Church
Administrator (I Cor. 12:4-6). 5) He can be personally mistreated (tempted, lied to, grieved, resisted, insulted and blasphemed). The New Testament clearly shows the Holy Spirit to have a personality and to be God. (‘Jehovah is the Spirit’ II Cor. 3:17 NWT).
 

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        References
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Lovin, Foreword to the English translation of Karl Barth's The Holy Spirit and the Christian Life (1993 ISBN 0-664-25325-3), page xvii Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . The Guardian (London). 2005-04-11. Retrieved 2010-05-04. Matthew 28:19 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. The Gospel of Luke by Luke Timothy Johnson, Daniel J. Harrington 1992 ISBN 0-8146-5805-9, page 195 1, 2, and 3 John by John Painter, Daniel J. Harrington 2002 ISBN 0-8146-5812-1, page 324 The anointed community: the Holy Spirit in the Johannine tradition by Gary M. Burge 1987 ISBN 0-8028-0193-5, pages 14–21 Theology of Paul the Apostle by James D. G. Dunn 2003 ISBN 0-567-08958-4, pages 418–420 A Concise Dictionary of Theology by Gerald O'Collins, Edward G. Farrugia 2004 ISBN 0-567-08354-3 page 115 Holy People of the World: A Cross-Cultural Encyclopedia, Volume 3 by Phyllis G. Jestice 2004 ISBN 1-57607-355-6, pages 393–394 1 & 2 Thessalonians by Jon A. Weatherly 1996 ISBN 0-89900-636-1, pages 42–43 The Acts of the Apostles by Luke Timothy Johnson, Daniel J. Harrington 1992 ISBN 0-8146-5807-5, pages 14–18 A Bible Handbook to the Acts of the Apostles by Mal Couch 2004 ISBN 0-8254-2391-0, pages 120–129 Reading Acts: A Literary and Theological Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles by Charles H. Talbert 2005 ISBN 1-57312-277-7, pages 24–25 Karl Barth (1949). Dogmatics in Outline. New York Philosophical Library. p. 95. The Gospel According to John: An Introduction and Commentary by Colin G. Kruse (Jun 2004) ISBN 0802827713, page 123 The Cambridge Companion to Christian Doctrine by Colin E. Gunton (Jun 28, 1997) ISBN 052147695X, pages 280–285 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . Pope Pius XII (1943).  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . See discussion in " Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. ". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company. 1913. Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . Luke 1:35 Harrington, Daniel J., SJ. "Jesus Goes Public." America, Jan. 7–14, 2008, p. 38 [Mt 3:17] [Mk 1:11] [Lk 3:21-22] John 15:26 John 14:16 Theology for the Community of God by Stanley J. Grenz (Jan 31, 2000) ISBN 0802847552 page 380 Baptism in the Early Church: History, Theology, and Liturgy in the First Five Centuries by Everett Ferguson (Mar 29, 2009) ISBN 0802827489, page 776 Systematic Theology by Lewis Sperry Chafer 1993 ISBN 0-8254-2340-6, page 25 The Wiersbe Bible Commentary: The Complete New Testament by Warren W. 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Kinnamon, Michael; Cope, Brian E. (1997). The Ecumenical Movement: An Anthology of Key Texts and Voices. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. p. 172.ISBN 978-0-8028-4263-3. The Holy Spirit: Classic and Contemporary Readings by Eugene F. Rogers Jr. (May 19, 2009) Wiley ISBN 1405136235, page 81 Introduction to Theology by Owen C. Thomas and Ellen K. Wondra (Jul 1, 2002 )ISBN 0819218979, page 221 David Watson (1973). One in the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton. pp. 39–64. Encyclopedia of Protestantism by J. Gordon Melton 2008 ISBN 0816077460, page 69 Encyclopedia of Protestantism by J. Gordon Melton 2008 ISBN 0816077460, page 134 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . Awake!: 14–15. July 2006. "In the Bible, God's Holy Spirit is identified as God's power in action. Hence, an accurate translation of the Bible's Hebrew text refers to God’s spirit as "God's active force."" Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. "True to the Faith", p. 81 Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. David Watson (1973). One in the Spirit. Hodder and Stoughton. pp. 20–25. Catechism of the Catholic Church:  Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. . Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. Renaissance Art: A Topical Dictionary by Irene Earls 1987 ISBN 0-313-24658-0, page 70 Gardner's Art Through the Ages: The Western Perspective by Fred S. Kleiner ISBN 495573558, page 349 Vladimir Lossky, 1999 The Meaning of Icons ISBN 0-913836-99-0, page 17 We Believe in the Holy Spirit (Ancient Christian Doctrine, No. 4) by Joel C. Elowsky (Jul 13, 2009) InterVarsity ISBN 0830825347, page 14 The Holy Spirit: Classic and Contemporary Readings by Eugene F. Rogers Jr. (May 19, 2009) Wiley ISBN 1405136235, pages 121–123  
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    • By JW Insider
      Most of us have probably already worked through the online Bible Study course on jw.org.This was an excellent idea. Although others sites have done it, too, it was especially good to see it on the jw.org site. It has some unique features here and is, of course, geared toward a Witness viewpoint. Yet there are very few lessons that contain a lot of unique doctrinal material, even though Trinity, Soul/Hell are presented. It's very simplified and has some nice features that would work well for non-readers. It's all finished in 8 lessons.
      Each lesson may have only a few questions or sections and a quick reader can get through all the content of all the lessons, including short videos, in about 15 minutes. You could even click all the footnotes and links and read the scripture links and still finish the entire course in under a half-hour. There are links at the end of each lesson which point to website articles (usually original or slightly modified Watchtower and Awake! articles that have their own pages on the jw.org site). Comparing this to several of our our books geared toward those who would study the Bible with us in person (for several months) one could more easily customize a Bible study where extra links were only looked up in the event the student had additional questions or concerns about a topic, and a sufficient study could be completed in a matter of days, or even hours.
      Notice too that there are no direct links to anything about 1914, 1919, 1922, etc. Nothing about blood transfusions, birthdays, etc. The very first lesson does contain a
      Hello guest! Please register or sign in (it's free) to view the hidden content. where the very first and only secular dates are mentioned: they are 732 B.C.E., then 539 B.C.E., then 614 B.C.E. Someone might wonder why 539 is used as an accurate secular date and yet there is no explanation as to why the other two secular dates differ from the same secular evidence by 20 years. I don't suppose anyone expects the student to question this. A sense of accuracy is offered by the statement immediately following the video which says: "Each detail is confirmed by historical records, including the Nabonidus Chronicle and the history of Herodotus." Of course, the only reason we keep one of the secular dates (539), but change the prior secular dates by 20 years is so that the 1914 date can be "supported." But, as stated, 1914 is not mentioned directly in the lessons, unless you include two of the six extra links to articles for further information (at the end of the very last lesson, 3.3). These are the lessons: 
      Unit 1 | The Bible and Its Author
      Lesson 1.1  |  About the Bible—Can the Bible Help You?
      Lesson 1.2  |  Who Is God, the Creator?
      Unit 2 | The Bible’s Main Characters
      Lesson 2.1  |  Who Is Jesus?
      Lesson 2.2  |  Who Are the Angels?
      Lesson 2.3  |  Why Did God Create Humans?
      Unit 3 | The Bible’s Message of Hope
      Lesson 3.1  |  Why Do Suffering and Evil Exist?
      Lesson 3.2  |  How Does God Save Us From Death?
      Lesson 3.3  |  How Will God End Suffering and Evil?
    • By indagator
      Member “Witness” at this forum has taken exception to the NWT’s rendering of 2 Cor. 5:20 as “substitutes for Christ”:

      https://www.theworldnewsmedia.org/topic/57458-five-year-old-raped-by-jehovahs-witness/

      She states, “There is only one translation that I have found for 2 Cor 5:20, that throws in the word “substitute” – not just once, but twice – the NWT.”

      What's the real story here? Is there any justification for the idea of substitution for Christ in this verse? A short one-page essay is attached.
      2 Cor 5.20.pdf
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Villahermosa, Tabasco.- Debido a los altos índices de inseguridad que se viven en las calles de Villahermosa, los Testigos de Jehová han tenido que recurrir a la tecnología para poder predicar desde una aplicación móvil, en donde los usuarios pueden descargar la biblia en más de 234 idiomas y dialectos, y con ello, enfrentarse al hecho de que las personas no les quieren abrir las puertas de sus casas por temor a ser saqueados.
      Y es que señalaron que ante el incremento en la tasa delictiva, muchos ciudadanos temen dejarlos pasar a sus hogares para recibir la palabra de Dios, es por eso que ahora recurren a solo invitarlos “desde los portones o banquetas- a que descarguen la aplicación y exploren información relacionada a los mandatos de Jehová, indicó Raymundo Argudo Pérez, predicador.
      “Es una aplicación gratuita para toda la gente en donde la sociedad de los Testigos de Jehová puede checar en línea información  cómo películas bíblicas,  caricaturas para los niños, consejos para los niños de cómo deben ser obedientes a los padres, también la Biblia en línea”, apuntó.
      A lo que continuó: Algunas personas pues temen abrir sus puertas y nosotros evitamos accesar a los hogares, siempre les decimos que mejor desde afuera.
      No obstante, ellos continúan recorriendo la ciudad en sus tiempos libres para trasladar la sabiduría de Jesucristo a través de la predicación en los hogares que se los permitan, situación que los vuelve vulnerables a los atracos de los amantes de lo ajeno, sobre todo en colonias populares denominadas focos rojos.
      Incluso –dijo- que los delincuentes han accesado al interior de los centros religiosos en donde se reúnen, para secuestrar a predicadores.
      “No se cobra nada y nosotros lo hacemos de manera voluntaria tomando en cuenta un principio bíblico registrado en Mateo capítulo 10 versículo 8, donde ahí se expresa nuestro señor Jesucristo cuando capacitó a sus discípulos para ir a predicar, él no les cobró si no les dijo, recibieron gratis den gratis, la palabra de Dios no se vende”, concluyó.

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    • By Bible Speaks
      "You created all things."—Rev. 4:11.

      “Your eyes saw even the embryo of me, and in your book all its parts were down in writing, as regards the days when they were formed and there was not yet one among them.” (Ps. 139:16)
    • By Bible Speaks
      Jehovah’s Witnesses have translated Bible-based material from English into over 900 languages. Translation of a written text into another written language is challenging enough. But sign-language translation involves additional work. Many deaf people communicate ideas visually by using their hands and facial expressions, so sign-language translators translate from text to video. In this way, the Witnesses have translated publications into more than 90 sign languages.
       
    • By JayDubya
      I understand the necessity and need and desire to preach the word and it’s urgency, however, would this be a witness if this person were pulled over by a cop? Or speeding? Or cut someone off? Or playing ‘worldlyÂ’ music? ItÂ’s a bit commercialized. I certainly would NEVER want to drive a car with that tag for ‘we all stumble many times.Â’ Driving in a neighborhood could be a ‘warningÂ’ instead of a witness. Idk. How far is too far?

    • By Jack Ryan
      Request for personal data erasure under gdpr refused on clause which says religious organisations can keep records. The following is in their privacy policy:
      Upon receipt of your written request, after you provide sufficient evidence of your identity and enough information to permit us to identify your personal data, the applicable data controller will fairly consider granting the request by balancing the interests of the individual in gaining access to data or correcting or deleting data against the legitimate interests of the organization, including whether granting the request would endanger the organization’s right to religious freedom and practice. We will also notify any third-party recipients of the necessary changes.
      Please note that your data may not be erased if processing is required by law or if the data may be kept on other legal bases. For example, the religious organization has an interest in permanently maintaining data regarding an individual’s status as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Deleting such information would unduly infringe on the organization’s religious beliefs and practices. Requests to delete personal data are subject to any applicable legal reporting or document retention requirements imposed on us. You may also lodge a complaint with your local data protection authority about the processing of the data you have provided through this website.
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Why JW.ORG does not show development regarding sexual abuse cases as it does with other legal issues? 
       
    • By Kurt
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    • By Landon
      SO HARD to get an email address to contact jw.org. I have a media resource-licensing question for pictures on JW.org. Does anyone know an email address that I can direct my question to?
    • Guest Nicole
    • By The Librarian
      Adams Karl - God Spirit At Work In The Lives Of His People.mp3
      Agape!
      @The Librarian
       
    • Guest Nicole
      By Guest Nicole
      Transcript - Promoting Love and Respect for Truth.pdf
    • Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
    • Guest Nicole
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