I believe in One God who is able to exist as different Persons. I believe in God the Father, in God the Son, and in God the Holy Spirit. Yes, I believe the Holy Spirit is God as another Person. But I also believe that the devil wants all Bible believers to believe in the Trinity.
The Trinity concept of One-God-In-Three, or Three-Persons-In-One-God, or whatever, is defined as: The One God existing as Three Persons – The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit. These three, according to the Trinity concept, are separate persons and function separately. Now this concept is nowhere, absolutely nowhere given in the Bible. And I mean in the original Bible as given in the Hebrew and Greek languages. I will give a gift of one thousand dollars (I will make that one million dollars on the day I can truthfully afford to do so) if anyone can show me one verse in the Bible that says that God is a Trinity and that the Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit are One. I hope nobody naively points out to me 1 John 5:7.
‘For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one.’
This one verse was inserted by some copyist after 100 AD, after the era of the Apostles and at the beginning of the era of the Catholic church. There is no evidence of this reading in any Greek manuscript until the 1500s. If you wish to go deep into the origin of this spurious verse, here is an excellent link: http://bible.org/article/textual-problem-1-john-57-8
The translators of Bible versions such as New International Version, New American Standard Bible, and many other translations are firm believers in the Three-Persons-In-One-God idea, and have written several articles and books affirming the Trinity, but they have not included 1 John 5:7 in any of their translations.
The King James version is the most influential of all Bible translations made, and this one verse has done more harm to Christians’ concept of the Godhead than any other passage in Scripture. Because of this verse, which is the devil’s attempt to popularize the Trinity concept, hundreds of millions of God’s people with two eyes have a three-lens trinocular view of God, when God made man to have only a binocular vision of him.
Look at the image above of the concept of Three Persons that are God. They look alike, act alike, are God persons alike but somehow the triplets are still One God. Perhaps the triplets concept as visualized in the image given here may not be accepted by all modern Christian groups; for them the image would be more accurate if the Father was on the right side and the Son on the left and a dove depicted somewhere above or below between them. But the dove is God for them just as the Father and the Son are God for them, and they have at least one scriptural sanction for this belief – when the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove descended on Jesus at his baptism.
Let me state emphatically that in none of Paul’s salutatory and farewell greetings to the churches, does he mention the Holy Spirit when he mentions the Father and Jesus.
‘Peace to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.’ Ep 6:24
‘To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.’ 2 Thes 1:1-2
‘Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ’ Rom 1:7; I Cor 1:5; Gal 1:3; etc
‘Now may our God and Father Himself, and our Lord Jesus Christ, direct our way to you.’ 1 Thes 3:11
However, when Paul talks about our communion, or fellowship with God, he specifically names the Holy Spirit.
‘The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion [margin: ‘fellowship’] of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.’ 2 Cor 13:14
‘Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy’ Phil 2:1
Our communion, or fellowship, says Paul, is with the Holy Spirit. What does that mean, it simply means our fellowship is with the Father and the Son who is present in us in the Person of the Holy Spirit.
Now look at what John says:
‘Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son’ 2 John:9
How Trinitarians must have wished John had included the Holy Spirit in this verse about God abiding in a person!
‘that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.’ 1 John 1:3
‘If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make our home with him.’ John 14:23
Jesus mentions the Holy Spirit once alongside the Father and the Son, but only in the context of a believer’s baptism.
‘Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit’ Mat 28:19
When we are baptized we receive the Holy Spirit; but with the Holy Spirit we also receive the Father and the Son. You will understand what this means as you read on.
Now, here’s something to ponder: Have you read a verse such as this?
‘In the beginning was the Word and the Spirit, and they were with God, and they were God.’
The copyist who inserted the false verse of 1 John 5:7 may have wished with all his heart that God had inspired 1 John 5:8 to be worded in the manner I wrote above so nobody would ever doubt the Trinity concept. But for some reason, he didn’t dare change John 1:1, and decided only to add a few clarifying words to 1 John 5:8 which he thought God hadn’t made plain enough for the lay reader. (He either didnt know about, or thought he could be exempted from, the curse in Revelation 22:18-19 on those who add or omit anything from the original inspired Word of God.)
The Holy Spirit is God with us. To put it even more plainly, the Holy Spirit is God the Father and God the Son who dwells (singular verb) with us. See this interesting usage:
‘Come near to Me, hear this: I have not spoken in secret from the beginning; From the time that it was, I was there. And now the Lord God and His Spirit have sent Me.’ Is 48:16
The Trinity-believing translators of the New King James Version have used the plural auxiliary verb ‘have’ for the subject ‘the Lord God and His Spirit’. But they acknowledge in the margin of this version, ‘’Hebrew verb is singular’. Now if the original Hebrew uses a singular verb how did these translators – Godfearing men, obviously – dare use a plural? Because the devil has so greatly impressed upon their minds that the Holy Spirit is a separate Person in the Godhead. Many other translations, including the King James Version, faithfully renders the phrase with the singular verb.
There is even a name for the God who dwells with us – Immanuel.
‘Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel.’ Is 7:14
Immanuel means – ‘God With Us’ – and God with us is the Holy Spirit. But it is also the name of Christ, because the Holy Spirit is actually Christ living in us, and through Christ, the Father also lives in us.
‘that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us [Holy Spirit, Immanuel]…that they may be one just as We [Father and Christ] are one: I in them, and You in Me’ John 17:21-23
That is the Bible definition of the Holy Spirit: ‘I in them, and You in Me’.
We may even say that Immanuel is another of the names of the Holy Spirit, in addition to his other names, Helper, Teacher, the Spirit of Truth (John 14:26; John 14:17). But the Helper, Teacher, Truth, are also Jesus himself or the Father (Hebrews 13:6; Matthew 23:10; John 14:6).
Prior to Christ’s birth, the One God always existed as two Persons – ‘The Father’ and ‘The Word’, and after Christ’s birth as ‘The Father and ‘The Son’, and finally after man is born into the God family, as ‘The Father and The Son and Immanuel’. That is God’s and man’s ultimate destiny: both the Father and the Son living with, and in, each of his saved children in the Person of the Holy Spirit.
There is no separate third Person in the Godhead. But the Father and the Son can live as a third Person in man. If you want to call that Trinity, you may. But it is not exactly the same Trinity that Trinitarians believe in today. The Three-Persons-In-One-God belief of Catholics, Orthodox, Episcopal and many other Christian denominations is very similar to the Trinity belief of Hindus and other religions.
The Holy Spirit is not seated on the left hand of the Father, or on the right hand of Christ (as depicted in the image). It is only the Son who is seated with the Father. And it is the man or woman with the Holy Spirit who is seated with Christ on the right hand of the Father.
‘but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared by My Father.’ Mat 20:23
‘So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God.’ Mark 16:19
Let me conclude: The Holy Spirit is both the Father and the Son in another Person, or, in the case when the Son became man, the Holy Spirit was just the Father alone in another Person, symbolized by a dove. The Holy Spirit cannot exist or function by himself as third Person, as the Son can exist and interact as a separate Person with the Father. The Son or the Father has to become the Holy Spirit for him to be able to exist separately.
Jesus could not send the Holy Spirit down to earth, because he was not ascended to heaven yet. He had to go up, and then come down again in the Person of the Holy Spirit.
‘But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.’ John 7:39
‘Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you…A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father.’ John 16:7,16
One final thought: We pray to the Father, and we can pray to the Son sometimes (Acts 7:59-60), but nowhere in the Bible does God encourage us to pray to the Holy Spirit or to have a personal relationship with him as we have with the Father and the Son. We are called to know the Father and the Son, not the Holy Spirit. When we seek the Father and the Son, we will know the Holy Spirit. There is no need for servants of God, such as Benny Hinn, to take extra pains to worship the Holy Spirit separately.
‘And this is eternal life, that they may know You, they only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.’ John 17:3
God bless your understanding of his Godhead that you may continue to grow in the fascination of the awesome nature of our Creator and Savior.