I Have been holding onto this one for a little while, but I have been convicted today to finish it up. So here it is now. I was asked the other day out of the blue one of the strangest questions that I have been asked in a long time. First, I would like to give a word of caution before we continue. I often pray for God to place someone in my path that I can share the Gospel (Good News) with at some time throughout the day. My word of advice would be to be careful what you ask for. You just might get what you ask for.
Now to put this blog into the context of its creation. I was getting off work the other day and was waiting inside the station waiting for my car to warm up. Me and one of the other guys were talking about the new Marvel movie Eternals. If you have seen it, you may understand part of what I am saying. For those that have not seen it, there will be no spoiler alerts (I hope). We talked about some of the characters in this movie and other Marvel movies. Such as Thanos, Eros, and Chronos. Those of you that know Greek mythology will recognize those names.
Anyway, to get back on track. The guy I talked to admitted to not knowing much about religion. I don’t remember word for word how he asked, but to paraphrase, he said that there is God and there is Jesus. Which one do we worship? I answered his question with a question of my own; Have you ever heard of the Holy Trinity? I gave him the quick answer of God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
It was at this point that I realized this is a tough and confusing topic to explain to another Christian, much less a non-believer. Maybe I am just a little slow in the mind in my old age! Anyway, I am going to try to tackle this tough subject one piece at a time. Starting with God the Father and working my way through each person of God.
God the Father
I would say that everyone has heard of God, but I am sure there are still some remote civilizations in the jungles that have not. The opening line of the Bible says it all, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1 NASB). We also see in the Book of Revelation, “‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty” (1:8 NASB). There is no question as to who God is. Even the strictest atheist knows the many names of God.
The Son, Jesus Christ
Jesus is the given Son of God. God incarnate. The Old Testament is full of prophecies of the coming Christ. The first one to come to mind is Isaiah 53, which is often called the Suffering Servant. I also recommend reading or even doing a personal study of this chapter. Most people know the Christmas story. Jesus was born to Joseph and Mary. It was not by natural conception though. This can be found in the Gospel of Matthew:
“The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way: After his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, it was discovered before they came together that she was pregnant from the Holy Spirit. So her husband, Joseph, being a righteous man, and not wanting to disgrace her publicly, decided to divorce her secretly.
But after he had considered these things, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because what has been conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:18-21)
Jesus, the Son, is the key to salvation. As a matter of fact, Jesus is at the center of Christianity. The Gospel of John says, ” Jesus told him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.'” So, to muddy the waters a little, Jesus is 100% a human man, and, 100% God. Paul writes,”Adopt the same attitude as that of Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God as something to be exploited. Instead he emptied himself by assuming the form of a servant, taking on the likeness of humanity. And when he had come as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death— even to death on a cross.”(Philippians 2:5-8 CSB)
So in short, Jesus was born of a virgin birth. He walked the earth as a man while being fully God. He healed the blind, the lame, the mute, and the sick. The Pharisees accused Him of claiming to be the “King” of the Jews knowing what the Romans would do. Jesus was beaten and mocked, and then carried His cross and was crucified. The heart of not only Christianity but the Gospel is what happens three days later; HE IS RISEN.
The Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is a gift from God. The Book of Acts is all about the Early formation of the Church. This is where Jesus tells the Disciples about the Holy Spirit, “While he was with them, he commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for the Father’s promise. ‘Which,’ he said, ‘you have heard me speak about; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit in a few days.’” (Acts 1:4-5 CSB) Jesus further tells them, “‘But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.’” (Acts 1:8 CSB)
The Holy Spirit dwells within believers and is our guide through life. The Holy Spirit brings us back to the center when we stray off of God’s path for us. I hope this clears things up somewhat or at least makes you want to dig in and go further in a study of the Holy Spirit. Any comments or questions are welcomed.