Saturday, January 21, 2017

The Indwelling of the Holy Spirit

18 Run from sexual immorality! “Every sin a person can commit is outside the body.”[a] On the contrary, the person who is sexually immoral sins against his own body. 19 Don’t you know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought at a price. Therefore glorify God in your body.[b]

1 Corinthians 18-20 HCSB

This passage is cited, from a prima facie reading, as to teach the doctrine of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. It is a common sense interpretation of this doctrine that the Holy Spirit, in fact, indwells believers whereby the Holy Spirit infuses all believers such that the Holy Spirit is present with their souls within their bodies. On this common sense interpretation all human persons possess bodies and souls. But believers have the Holy Spirit united to their souls and bodies. This interpretation has some startling theological and philosophical implications. First, it is a denial of any form of divine simplicity. It affirms the Holy Spirit is divided among all believers. Second, it denies God is timeless and immutable. If the Holy Spirit is spacially located in each believer's body then He exhibits change as He relates with spacial things. The argument can be formulated in a syllogism:

1. If the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is spacial presence then God is spacial, temporal and mutable.
2. God is incorporeal, timeless and immutable.
3. Hence the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is not spacial presence.  

Third, it seems to affirm the incoherent. If the Holy Spirit is spacially located in all believers, from various spacial distances (e.g. those in Australia, China, Japan, Hawaii and Brazil), then the Holy Spirit from one spacial point can be presently "here" and equally, with millions of miles of distance apart, at another spacial point be presently "here"; two points miles apart but both "here". Fourth, it assumes a naive sense of omnipresence. There are two competing interpretations of omnipresence. Either God exists spacelessly but is present at every point in space in the sense that he is cognizant of and causally active at every point in space. Hence, immediate knowledge and power extending everywhere. Or God is spatially located in the universe but is wholly present at every point in space. Of course, both can be affirmed without contradiction. Fifth, to attribute to the Holy Spirit the temporal spacial indexical  "I am now here"  would presuppose the Holy Spirit is both spacial and temporal. 

 It's amazing to read even Hank Hanaegraaff understands many of these distinctions. 

Resources on Divine Attributes:

Resources on the indwelling of the Holy Spirit:
This looks very promising:

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