Holy Spirit

A few questions come to mind before I get into the main discussion.

Who is the Holy Spirit?  Where does he come from?

I have not been able to find any specific teaching that the Holy Spirit is or is not a spirit 
child of heavenly parents.

"Three glorified, exalted, and perfected personages comprise the Godhead or supreme 
presidency of the universe. . . . They are: God the Father; God the Son; God the Holy Ghost

(Religion 430-431 - Doctrines of the Gospel Student Manual, chapter 3, p. 8).

The wording here is similar to what is on the Basic Beliefs section at http://www.mormon.org/mormonorg/eng/basic-beliefs/the-restoration-of-truth/the-restoration-of-truth

The section "God is your loving Heavenly Father" says, "God has a body that looks like 
yours, though His body is immortal, perfected, and has a glory beyond description
."

It seems the Holy Ghost was also perfected like Heavenly Father was perfected.

The most important thing here is to determine what "perfected" means.  It is not "perfect," 
but "perfected."
  Pay careful attention.  One is a verb and the other is an adjective.

Maybe this would entail him dying and resurrecting like Heavenly Father, unless he was 
perfected in some other way.

So, there may be a few identities of the Holy Spirit:

a. He was always a God, the first member of the Godhead before Heavenly Father and 
      Jesus became Gods and joined.

b. He is a created being who was created as a God.

c. He is a created being who progressed into becoming a God.

d. He is a procreated spirit child of heavenly parents, the brother of Jesus.


According to Gospel Principles chapter 7, the Holy Spirit is a member of the Godhead in spirit 
form.  According to page 8 of "Doctrines of the Gospel Student Manual - Religion 430-431", 
the Holy Spirit is an exalted being
. "Three glorified, exalted, and perfected personages comprise 
the Godhead or supreme presidency of the universe ... They are God the Father, God the 
Son, and God the Holy Ghost".

It is unclear how the Holy Spirit went from imperfection to perfection to gain his exaltation 
to godhood.  Given the Church's teachings about marriage being a requirement for 
exaltation, it is unknown to whom and when the Holy Ghost married.

Gospel Principles says the Holy Spirit can be in only one place at a time (page 37). 
Doctrine and Covenants 130:22 says the Holy Ghost is omnipresent in that He is "
personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us
."

Is the Holy Ghost multi-present or not?

Here is an exercise for our Mormon audience:

From Gospel Principles, page 37 - "The Holy Ghost is a member of the Godhead. He is 
a spirit that has the form and likeness of a man (see D&C 130:22). He can be in only 
one place at a time."

Please follow very carefully otherwise you may get confused.

Let's read the passage.

"The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the 
Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not 
so, the [body of the] Holy Ghost could not dwell in us."

I inserted the phrase "body of the" so that the context remains consistent.

How can the LDS Church teach that the body of the Holy Ghost can dwell in someone 
and yet the body of the Holy Ghost can only be in one place at a time?

Is the LDS Church really talking about the idea of "influence" instead?

Let's reword the passage.

"The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the 
Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not 
so, the [influence of the] Holy Ghost could not dwell in us."

Do you notice the problem here?

If "influence" is meant, then one changes the passage to have two opposing contexts-
one "body" (the first context referring to the Father and the Son) and the other "influence"
(the second context referring to the Holy Ghost).

To make sense of this passage, one must conclude that the context is either body
or influence, but not both.

So if the context is "body," then the Holy Ghost's body can indwell multiple people
at the same time - thus making Him omnipresent.

Now what if we change the context to "influence?"

Can the influence of the Father and the Son dwell in multiple people at the same time? 
Is the influence of the Father and the Son also omnipresent like in the case of the Holy 
Ghost?

Suppose that they do have a body of flesh and bones as LDS theology teaches. Does
having this type of body make their influence not omnipresent whereas having a spirit
body makes the Holy Ghost omnipresent?

If and why would a Latter-day Saint even think about the context of "influence" when 
Doctrine and Covenants 130:22 is talking about "body?"  Do you see the problem that 
arises if and when Latter-day Saints get the context wrong?

What if the context of the passage is "person?"  Is that not the same as "body?"

Then it seems to say that the Holy Ghost is a spirit person who dwells in multiple people 
at the same time. This makes Him omnipresent again.

Can the body of the Holy Spirit be in more than one place at a time without the person of 
the Holy Spirit also being in more than one place at a time? Is there any effect on a 
person when the body of the Holy Spirit only (without person and influence) dwells in that 
person?

If you don't know what the word "dwell" means in this context, then you may also want 
to look at these verses:

"And this I know, because the Lord hath said he dwelleth not in unholy temples, but in the 
hearts of the righteous doth he dwell” (Alma 34:36).

"For every upright, honest person is possessed more or less, of the Holy Spirit, and this 
holy messenger in the hearts of men bears record of the word of God” (Teachings of 
Presidents of the Church - Joseph F. Smith, pp. 203-204).

"The idea that the Father and the Son dwell in a man's heart is an old sectarian notion, and 
is false" (D&C 130:2-3). The Heavenly Father dwells within Jesus (D&C 93:17; John 14:9).

What is the context of who or what is doing the dwelling? The person, the body, or the 
influence? All three, or a combination of the 3? If you pick your context wrong, then the 
verses will not make sense.

You will not find help if you come with a preconceived notion of a God who is limited by a 
physical body of flesh and bones. What you think is impossible for man is possible with God.

Another unclear teaching in LDS theology is on the identity of the Holy Ghost. Is he a spirit 
brother of Jesus and Lucifer or is he a God who existed before the Mormon Heavenly Father 
became a God?

By forcing a consistent interpretation on the context of section 130:22, you can quickly spot
the confusion in LDS theology.


 

Copyright 2004-2017 LDS Learning, All rights reserved. [inquiry -- at -- ldslearning.org]
The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of the web hosting company