In our current series we’ve been going through an old list of questions and answers contained in the Westminster Larger Catechism published in 1648. Over the last two weeks we’ve seen that there is only one God, yet there are three persons in the Godhead: the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This week I want to begin looking at where the Bible teaches that God the Son and God the Holy Spirit are equal with God the Father. I want to do this by firstly showing that the Scriptures call Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit by the name ‘God’.
The Bible calls Jesus ‘God’ in a number of places. For example, John the apostle says: ‘We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true–even in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. (1 John 5:20)’. Another example is from Hebrews: ‘But about the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom. (Hebrews 1:8)’. Also Thomas calls Jesus ‘God’: ‘Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!” (John 20:28).’ Meanwhile Paul says that we wait for Jesus who is God: ‘…we wait for the blessed hope–the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ’ (Titus 2:13). And Paul says in Colossians: ‘For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form…’ (Colossians 2:9). Moreover Jesus himself says that he is equal with God the Father: ‘I and the Father are one’ (John 10:30). Thus the Bible clearly teaches that Jesus is God.
But what about the Holy Spirit? Does the Bible teach that he is God too? Peter asks Ananias in the book of Acts: ‘Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God.”’ (Act 5:3-4). Who did Ananias lie to? Peter understands that when Ananias lied to the Holy Spirit he lied to God. Another example is when Paul speaks about the temple of God: ‘Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?’ (1 Corinthians 3:16). God’s temple is where God lives, and Paul says that the Spirit lives there, implying that the Spirit is God.
Do you believe that Jesus is God and the Holy Spirit is God? Or do you deny the Bible’s teachings and make your own God?