II. WHO IS THE HOLY SPIRIT?
The Holy Spirit is the Triune God who went through a process. Why did God go through a process? Because He has a plan, an economy. [It is according to His economy that God administrates this plan. The first step He took was creation. When the man He had created became fallen, He took the second step, the step of redemption. This redemptive work of God has to do with the Father, the Son, and the Spirit. In eternity, the Father arranged, designed, and intended everything according to His plan. In time, at the fullness of time, the Son came to become a man, putting on man’s flesh, having man’s likeness and man’s nature, and lived among men for thirty-three and a half years. In His human body, with a human form and with the human nature, He Himself worked, preached, performed miracles, and brought His disciples to live and move together with Him for three and a half years. Then He went to the cross, being willing to enter into death to experience death. According to the flesh, He entered into the tomb; according to the spirit and the soul, He entered into Hades and remained there for a period of three days. In Hades He displayed Himself for all the principalities of death to see, proving that He is one who cannot be held by death, but has overcome death and is resurrected. He went into death by Himself; in the same way, He came out of death by Himself. Once He came out of death and entered into resurrection, He was transfigured from the likeness of the flesh to the likeness of the Spirit. Therefore, in resurrection, He became the life-giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45b). This life-giving Spirit is the ultimately consummated Triune God.]
III. THE TWO ASPECTS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
A. The Essential Aspect for Life
The Spirit has two aspects—the essential and the economical aspects. Essential means pertaining to the essence, necessary to the constitution and existence, hence, of life and being. The essential aspect is that the Spirit would come into us, bringing us the divine essence to be our life and life supply. By this aspect we may live and have our being in God to express God. Man was made by God to have God’s life and to express God. This aspect of the Spirit fulfills that intention.
B. The Economical Aspect for Power
Economical means pertaining to the economy, necessary to the out-working of God’s household administration, hence, of power and work. The economical aspect is that the Spirit would clothe us with power so that we do God’s work of preaching the gospel, shepherding the young ones, perfecting the saints, and building up the church. Man was redeemed and regenerated to become partners of Christ in building up His church according to God’s economy. This aspect of the Spirit fulfills that requirement.
IV. THE INWARD FILLING OF THE SPIRIT FOR LIFE
In John 14:16-17 Jesus said, “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter…even the Spirit of reality…shall be in you.’’ In John 16:7, He said further, “If I go I will send Him (the Comforter) to you.’’ Before the Lord’s death, He promised the troubled disciples that He needed to go to the cross in order for the Spirit of reality to be sent. The Spirit of reality was to be in the disciples to bring to them all the divine realities of the Father and the Son. This was fulfilled on the day of resurrection according to John 20:19-22, “When therefore it was evening on that day, the first day of the week…Jesus came and stood in the midst…He breathed into them and said to them, Receive the Holy Spirit.’’ By the breathing in, the disciples received the Spirit of reality into them for life and life supply, since the Spirit is also the life-giving Spirit.
In Acts, the disciples continued to experience the inward filling. Acts 13:52 says, “And the disciples were made full of joy and of the Holy Spirit.’’ The Greek word used here is pleroo meaning filling inwardly to fullness. With the inward filling, we have joy as one of the fruits of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23).
(Lesson Book, Level 4: Life—Knowing and Experiencing Life, Chapter 11, by Witness Lee)