Galatians 5:18 But if ye be led of the Spirit, ye are not under the law. (KJV)
This concept seems to be a reality even in the Old Testament Times. Why? — David who was a man after God’s own heart was treated as a son even when his sin was grievous. Had he been under the Law, God would have, because of that law, taken his life for the sins of Adultery and murder. Grace seems to be God’s over riding gifting to those who loved Him and walked in the Spirit with Him even in the Old Testament. It is often thought and taught that the Holy Spirit indwelling man was a new concept for God, only to be seen in New Covenant times.
Yet it seems that, that is just not a totally true understanding. In Dan. 4:8; 18; and 5:11. We see that the Spirit of God is in Daniel. Although Nebuchadnezzer calls this presence “the spirit of the gods”. But what he knew was that Daniel’s God was different, and that He interacted with Daniel and was actually in him.
Ezekiel says in 3:24 Then the spirit entered into me, and set me upon my feet, and spake with me, and said unto me, Go, shut thyself within thine house. (KJV)
Just why “Spirit” is not capitalized in this verse is possibly due to the bias of the translators, for surely this is God’s Holy Spirit, what other Spirit outside of man’s own spirit is there other than God or a Satanic one?
Ezekiel 18:31 states: Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? (KJV)
This verse seems to be a call from God to Israel to come to Him for what some in Israel had already experienced in Him. Their belief rather than their resistance was what was necessary in order to experience God.
In Numbers 27:18 it states: So the Lord said to Moses, “Take Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the Spirit, and lay your hand on him;
In Genesis 41:38 it states: Then Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find a man like this, in whom is a divine spirit?”
Exodus 31:3 I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship,
The New Testament verifies this O.T. Indwelling
1 Peter 1:10-11 As to this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you made careful searches and inquiries, seeking to know what person or time the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating as He predicted the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow.
The Holy Spirit obviously was active inside the prophets as their teacher.
Luke 1:15 speaks of the birth of John the Baptist. Remember this is still OT times even though it is recorded in the New.
Luke 1:15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord; and he will drink no wine or liquor, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother’s womb.
Luke 1:41 And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost: (KJV)
Luke 1:67 And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying, (KJV)
John 3:7-10 Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel and do not understand these things?
It appears that Jesus in this encounter with Nicodemus places the rebirth by the Holy Spirit as a fact of that present time, because He seems to hold Nicodemus accountable for being a teacher and yet not knowing about the born again experience brought on by the Holy Spirit. This would mean that just as we have seen, it was definitely happening in OT times to a significant degree within the Jewish nation. In fact His reprimand of Nicodemus for being a teacher and yet not recognizing his need to properly teach the new birth further confirms that this birth was happening in OT times. Jesus said to Nicodemus “so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” He did not say: so will be.
But what is understood in all of this is the fact that God is sovereign in directing His Spirit. He is looking for those with a contrite and a believing heart.
YaHaVAhHev. Was a word the priest would use each year when he would enter the Holy of Holies and as he sprinkled the blood on the alter, he would say these words. Interpreted they say: behold the hands, behold the nails.
In fact it would seem that more was known in Old Testament Times than we realize due mainly to the bias of our indoctrination. Evidence is in fact considerable in the scriptures proving a different Holy Spirit involvement with Israel than we are told. He has always taught men who would hear and obey His word.
In Acts 7:51 Steven said just before he was stoned “You men who are stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears are always resisting the Holy Spirit; you are doing just as your fathers did.
The Holy Spirit we know has many roles in the world. No man can come to Me except the Father calls him. The Jews that Steven was confronting were resisting the Holy Spirit’s revelation to them of God’s truth concerning His Son following the coming of the Son. Did their Fathers also resist this wooing of the Spirit calling them to God’s truth for them in their own day?
Luke 2:25 And there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him.
This seems a different Spirit interaction than an indwelling Holy Spirit. This is what we have most often been taught was the Holy Spirits interaction with Israel. A purely outside force. But what we see is different. And then there were Jesus own words recorded in Mark 12:36, where He says: David himself said in the Holy Spirit,‘The Lord said to my Lord,“Sit at My right hand,Until I put Your enemies beneath Your feet.”’
We are all familiar with David’s pleading with God to “take not Thy Holy Spirit from me”.
So should knowing these things change our way of thinking? When the scripture tells us not to grieve the Holy Spirit, is that a command? Or is that just a hyperbole and certainly not to be taken seriously? Are we today grieving the Holy Spirit by taking Him for granted? When men think that no matter how they live or sin against God, that it can never happen that they can lose their salvation, is this thinking not more similar to the Pharisees; than it would be to the prophets of old, who walked in the Spirit, and who knew as David did that grieving God’s Spirit could result in His leaving them even as He had done with Saul? Is it not the fear of the Lord that is the producer of the contrite heart that our God seeks for from within a man?
So what did Jesus mean in John when He said and I will give you another counselor?
16 I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; 17 that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you. John 14:16-17 NASB
Is what Jesus is telling them really different than what already was? It seems that He is simply stating the truth of how God’s Spirit operates. The Holy Spirit is sent from God to be our teacher, our helper. He is not sent to teach the world, but to call individuals like you and me to come out of the world so that He will abide with us and be in us. This promise is to you and to your children and to your children’s children Peter had stated following Pentecost. What was different was that Israel’s promised Messiah had come, but not just for the believing Jew, but for the whole world, whosoever will may come.
Think on these things. And remember what Paul said to Timothy:
1 Timothy 4:16 Be conscientious about how you live and what you teach. Persevere in this, because by doing so you will save both yourself and those who listen to you. (NET)
Jesus stated in the same teaching as quoted above.
Judas (not Iscariot) *said to Him, “Lord, what then has happened that You are going to disclose Yourself to us and not to the world?” Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him. 24 He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me. John 14:22-24 NASB.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Hebrews 13:8 NASB