By Eusebio Tanicala
Some Bible students believe that the Holy Spirit in person dwells or is present in the Christian. Others think that the Holy Spirit dwells or influences the Christian through the word (Bible) only.
The one who believes that the Holy Spirit dwells or influences the Christian through the word only presents this syllogism to the other party:
1. If you believe that the Holy Spirit dwells in you, that indwelling would make you God;
2. Since you haven’t become God, therefore, the Holy Spirit doesn’t dwell in you.
A fellow preacher asked me to comment on the above line of reasoning. My impression on the above line of reasoning follows.
Nowhere in the Bible does it teach that when the Holy Spirit dwells or is present in a person or in a place that the person or place becomes God. If that were true, then the heavens where God dwells should have become God long time ago.
To further test the veracity of the line of reasoning of those who think that Holy Spirit indwelling would make an indwelt person deity let’s pose some questions:
- God dwells in heaven, has heaven become God? Answer: No.
- God sits on the throne in heaven, has God’s throne become God? Answer: No.
- The “thro the word” advocate we may call Mr. Woods, dwells in his house, has his house become Mr. Woods? Answer: No.
- Abram dwelt in the land of Canaan (Gen. 13:12), has the land of Canaan become Abram?
- God dwells between the cherubim (2 Kings 19:15), does the space between the cherubim turn into God? Answer: No.
- God dwells in Zion (Psalm 9:11), has Zion become God? Answer: No.
- God dwells in Mt. Zion (Isa. 8:18), has Mt. Zion become God? Answer: No.
- The Spirit of the LORD came upon Othniel (Judges 3:9-10), did Othniel become God?
- The Spirit of the LORD came upon Saul (1 Sam. 10:6, 10) after he was anointed, did Saul become God? Answer: No.
- The Holy Spirit came upon Mary (Luke 1:35 and context), did Mary become God?
- The Holy Spirit descended upon Christ on the day of His baptism (Matt. 3:16; John 1:33), did this descent of the HS upon Christ turned Him into God? Answer: No.
Since our answers to the above questions are all “No” the premises and conclusion of the “word only” advocates should therefore be false.