SPECIAL TOPIC: SPIRIT (pneuma) IN THE NEW TESTAMENT

The Greek term for "spirit" is used in several ways in the NT. Here are some representative classifications and examples.

A. of the Triune God

1. of the Father (cf. John 4:24)

2. of the Son (cf. Rom. 8:9-10; 2 Cor. 3:17; Gal. 4:6; 1 Pet. 1:11)

3. of the Holy Spirit (cf. Mark 1:11; Matt. 3:16; 10:20; John 3:5,6,8; 7:39; 14:17; Acts 2:4; 5:9; 8:29,35; Rom. 1:4; 8:11,16; 1 Cor. 2:4,10,11,13,14; 12:7)

B. of the human life force

1. of Jesus (cf. Mark 8:12; John 11:33,38; 13:21)

2. of mankind (cf. Matt. 22:43; Acts 7:59; 17:16; 20:22; Rom. 1:9; 8:16; 1 Cor. 2:11; 5:3-5; 7:34; 15:45; 16:18; 2 Cor. 2:13; 7:13; Phil. 4:23; Col. 2:5)

3. things that the Spirit produces in and through human spirits

a. not a spirit of slavery vs. a spirit of adoption - Rom. 8:15

b. a spirit of gentleness - 1 Cor. 4:21

c. a spirit of faith - 2 Cor. 4:13

d. a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him - Eph. 1:17

e. not a spirit of timidity vs. power, love, and discipline - 2 Tim. 1:7

f. spirit of error vs. spirit of truth - 1 John 4:6

C. of the spiritual realm

1. spiritual beings

a. good (i.e., angels, cf. Acts 23:8-9; Heb. 1:14)

b. evil (i.e., demonic, cf. Matt. 8:16; 10:1; 12:43,45; Acts 5:16; 8:7; 16:16; 19:12-21; Eph. 6:12)

c. ghosts (cf. Luke 24:37)

2. spiritual discernment (cf. Matt. 5:3; 26:41; John 3:6; 4:23; Acts 18:25; 19:21; Rom. 2:29; 7:6; 8:4,10; 12:11; 1 Cor. 14:37)

3. spiritual things (cf. John 6:63; Rom. 2:29; 8:2,5,9,15; 15:27; 1 Cor. 9:11; 14:12)

4. spiritual gifts (cf. 1 Cor. 12:1; 14:1)

5. inspiration of the Spirit (cf. Matt. 22:43; Luke 2:27; Eph. 1:17) 

6. spiritual body (cf. 1 Cor. 15:44-45)

D. Characterizes

1. the attitude of the world (cf. Rom. 8:15; 11:8; 1 Cor. 2:12)

2. thinking process of humans (cf. Acts 6:10; Rom. 8:6; 1 Cor. 4:2)

E. of the physical realm

1. wind (cf. Matt. 7:25,27; John 3:8; Acts 2:2)

2. breath (cf. Acts 17:25; 2 Thess. 2:8)

It is obvious that this term must be interpreted in light of its immediate context. There are various shades of meaning which can refer to (1) the physical world; (2) the unseen world; (3) as well as persons of this physical world or of the spiritual realm.

The Holy Spirit is that part of the Triune God who is supremely active in this stage of history. The new age of the Spirit has come. All that is good, holy, right, and true relates to Him. His presence, gifts, and ministry are crucial in the furtherance of the gospel and the success of the Kingdom of God (cf. John 14 and 16).  He does not draw attention to Himself, but to Christ (cf. John 16:13-14).  He convicts, convinces, woos, baptizes, and matures all believers (cf. John 16:8-11).

 

Copyright © 2013 Bible Lessons International