The Character of the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit differs from the Father and the Son in character. They are three distinct persons but one God. This is what is called the doctrine of the Trinity. The nature of God the Father is Love. It cannot change. God’s love for us led Him to give us His only Son, Jesus. Similarly, this love leads God to forgive us. In Matthew 12:31, Jesus says,
“Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven people…“
Jesus, on the other hand, came to earth to save us. He forgives all our sins and seeks to save us at all costs. In this context, he asserts that anyone who speaks against the Son of Man will be forgiven (verse 32). As for the Holy Spirit, it is a different matter. Jesus declares that :
“blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come” (verses 31-32).
Thus, if we blaspheme against the Holy Spirit, if we refuse to acknowledge the truth despite the clear evidence He shows us, there will be no forgiveness for us.
Let us learn from the behavior of the Pharisees and Sadducees. They hardened their hearts and refused to acknowledge that Jesus was the Messiah. As long as they only attacked Jesus, nothing was held against them. However, they began to equate the works Jesus did with those of the devil and demons. They even called him the prince of demons. Such a thing cannot be accepted by the Holy Spirit.
Mark 3:29 confirms that “… whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin.”
Throughout the Bible, this is the only eternal sin. In the church, we often talk about two persons of the Trinity (the Father and the Son) and forget to talk about the Holy Spirit. This is not a good attitude. It happens to be the Spirit who leads the Church. Let us carefully read the book of Acts, and we will easily understand. It is titled Acts of the Apostles, but in reality, it is more about the Acts of the Holy Spirit.
In addition to blaspheming the Holy Spirit, note that we can also lie to Him or grieve Him since He is a person. We can offend Him in several ways. Acts 5:3 mentions the lie of Ananias and his wife Sapphira. They lied to the Holy Spirit, thinking they were lying to men:
“Then Peter said, ‘Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land?“
Since a perfect communion between the Holy Spirit and us is necessary, Ephesians 4:30 exhorts:
“Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.“
It may happen that we try to tempt Him. Indeed, the apostle Peter makes it known in Acts 5:9:
“But Peter said to her, ‘How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.’“
We can also resist the Holy Spirit according to Acts 7:51:
“You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears! You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit!“
It is also possible to outrage the Spirit of truth. Let us read Hebrews 10:29 to convince ourselves:
“How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has trampled underfoot the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace?“
The Holy Spirit wants to make us sensitive to the will of God, His voice, and His plans for our lives. From the Old Testament to the New Testament, He has never ceased to inspire, strengthen, equip, and lead the people and children of God. He was present and accompanied the children of Israel to the promised land. But sometimes, they stiffened their necks and hardened their hearts to become rebellious to God.
Although we are under grace, some people are still struck by the Lord when they want to ridicule the Holy Spirit. The case of Ananias and Sapphira is revealing. In our time too, we can witness similar situations. We must not behave in any way with the Holy Spirit. Let us seek to know Him better and understand how He guides the Church today.
In the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, specifically in Abidjan, the leaders of a church had appointed someone to visit prayer cells. His task was to note and report what he saw and heard. He acted as a spy. This person came to our prayer cell and noted our prophecies and revelations. The Holy Spirit made me aware of it. I confronted the spy and asked him to stop reporting what he saw and heard in our prayer cell, but he persisted. One night, around 11 p.m., the Holy Spirit told him to confess publicly and ask for forgiveness. He came and asked for forgiveness but died three months later.
After a few years in Côte d’Ivoire, I returned to Burkina Faso. My team and I were full of zeal for the work of God. The flame burned in me. Every time we broadcast announcements for prayer gatherings in churches, someone would tell our hosts not to receive us because we were rebels expelled by our local church. But the Holy Spirit glorified His name.
During a large prayer meeting, the spirit of prophecy, knowledge, and revelation acted powerfully in me so that I prophesied and gave very precise revelations about the participants. Someone in the assembly began to think that I was a charlatan disguised as a man of God. The Holy Spirit revealed his thoughts to me, and I invited this person to return to good feelings. But he continued to consider me a charlatan in his heart.
Eight months later, he was looking for me because the Holy Spirit had convicted him of sin. After several attempts, he finally found me during a vigil in the same church. He confessed by admitting that he had insulted the Holy Spirit and me. I readily forgave him, but he died shortly after.
In a couple, if one of the spouses is anointed by the Holy Spirit, the other must make a distinction between the spiritual and physical aspects. Regarding the first aspect, he must recognize the anointing as anyone would. But for the second aspect, their relationships concern the rights and duties in the couple. If such a distinction is not made, one of the spouses may have problems. He should not blame the other’s anointing. Even children must be careful regarding the anointing of their parents. Let us refer to Psalm 105:15:
“Do not touch my anointed ones; do my prophets no harm.“
This divine order applies to each of us: children, husband or wife, etc. No one should touch someone who is consecrated. In this regard, we must control our words, actions, and even our thoughts.
This text is an excerpt from the book “The New Discovery of the Holy Spirit” written by Prophet Emmanuel SAWADOGO.