The Holy Spirit has endured much confusion over the history of the church. Some evenminimize His importance by relegating Him to an undefined characteristic of ³God´. As themost cryptic member of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit is not an optional part of the tri-unity of God, but He is an integral, essential member in terms of His relationship to God the Father, God theSon, and humanity. To that end, this research is organized chronologically by the primarysupporting passage for each facet of the definition of the Holy Spirit. Supporting passages areadded for each section where there is supporting evidence. Additionally, the historical setting inthe theological history of John¶s Gospel is also considered in these roles.
One of the roles given to the Holy Spirit in John¶s Gospel is that of identifying Christ tothe believers. This role is largely limited, for the purposes of this section, to the identification of Jesus to those referenced in the New Testament. While other parts of the New Testamentdemonstrate the Holy Spirit¶s ongoing role as identifier of Christ to believers, it is beyond thescope of this project.John the Baptist knew the identity of the Messiah because the Holy Spirit revealed it toHim. ³I would not have known him,´ John says to the crowd gathered at the Jordan River,³except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, µThe man on whom you see theSpirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.¶´ John the Baptistadds, ³I have seen and testify that this is the Son of God´ (John 1:33-34).
This sign to John theBaptist identified Jesus to him and allowed John to testify to the authenticity of Jesus¶ ministry.This also makes John the Baptist, as a believer in Christ, unique in that His revelation of the
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is from the New International Version.