In titling these posts “The Forgotten Third,” we are asking how are we missing God the Holy Spirit? While it is true that some believers overemphasize Him, others (it seems to us) overlook Him. We want to do neither, but long to have a balanced view of the Third Member of the Trinity.
There is much to be learned about Him from looking at whole books of the Bible. Since I am presently studying I Thessalonians with my friend Frank, let’s notice each reference to the Spirit in that book.
In Chapter One, Paul tells us —
“our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction” (v. 5). He also says, “6 You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.”
There are no references to the Spirit in Chapter Three (although verses 11-13 would have been a great occasion to refer to the Spirit!).
In Chapter Four we read, “7 For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 8 Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit.”
These are the references to God the Holy Spirit in the book of I Thessalonians. So, our communicating the gospel to others must be with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit, and with conviction. For those believers in severe suffering, there is available the joy given by the Holy Spirit. And we learn that we must not reject God’s instructions because we would be rejecting the very God who gives us His Holy Spirit. Therefore, we must not quench the Spirit!
In our next post we will look at the book of Ephesians and collect all references to God the Holy Spirit.
The Challenge Today: Ask God the Holy Spirit for His joy to live out today to the glory of God!