Riphs I’ve been watching some fascinating discussion on the internet over the last 7-10 days. I’ve come to a conclusion. Too many people, too many Christians believe the Holy Spirit is dead.

It’s the only reasonable explanation for what I’ve seen. The internet is a funny place. It is one heck of a tool for good, but like any tool it is also a tool for evil. If you have an axe to grind, if no one would actually hire you to be their pastor, then just buy a 9.99 webpage, set it up and you’re off.

You can start out criticizing the “big boys and girls.” You know Rick Warren, Joel Olsteen, John Ortberg, Doug Pagitt, etc. After you’re done with them you can go after a guy pastoring a little church in the middle of nowhere because you don’t like how he does outreach. If you’re lucky he’ll do something really bad, like be a friend of sinners.

Don’t believe me? Just search for blogs that call themselves ministries and you’ll find thousands. Some even set up boards, and make up fancy schmancy titles, it’s amazing!!! There are people that talk about being “internet apologist,” which I guess means that they don’t do any apologizing in real life.

Some will decry anyone female questioning them because they are a “pastor-teacher” but will snuggle up next to another ministry that is dominated by a woman. I suppose that proves the old saying, “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

It’s not just these Online Discernment Ministries (ODM) that believe the Holy Spirit has died. It’s every day rank and file Christians too. Don’t believe me? Ok, what about gambling? Is that a sin? How about alcohol consumption? Sooner or later, I’m sure I could bring up a social issue where many would decide that anyone who disagreed with them was apostate. This is why I bring up the ODM’s because for sure they have created a rhetoric that is unhelpful. Some of my favorites go on and on about how a church isn’t the “real church” of God because they have a New Year’s Eve party.

Now, I’m willing to bet that some of you reading this thought, “Well, I’m against parties like that, especially in the church! That is sin.” Here’s the thing, you can hold that view. I disagree with you, and I know we can’t both be right but you can hold that view. I want to ask a serious question, does my salvation get questioned because I disagree with you? In way too many instances it is the first thing questioned. This is why I think that many who claim Christ believe the Holy Spirit is dead. No longer, do we agree to respectfully disagree and allow the Holy Spirit room to convict someone who disagrees with us. We try, convict, and execute all based on our standard.

Do me a favor, think back fifteen years. Is there anything you believed back then, that you don’t today? Is there anything that you thought was sin back then, that now you think differently on? Now ask yourself if there is anyone that you tried to get to conform to that belief fifteen years ago? Did it damage the relationship? Was it worth it?

The other night I was talking about this with a friend of mine and she said that she thought it was wrong because it involved spending money in a way that wasn’t “best.” I told her I agree that for some it can lead to that and I asked “Well, what about this situation?” (Please note I’m not going to tell you the specifics because they don’t matter, it’s a principal I’m driving at) She responded to me, “Well, that’s different because it’s only one time a year.” Of course I responded, “Well, what if someone only does the original offending activity once a year?”

Did you see what happened? Now, there’s degrees and protocol and something that is exactly the same is now somehow different. We all have our pet sins that we like to slam others for. I think it probably makes God wan to puke.

I have to ask, what is the purpose of the Holy Spirit? Is it not to convict a believer of their sin? Is it not to show us the error of our ways? I’m not saying this is the only job of the Holy Spirit but it is one of them, right? Where in Scripture does it say that God needs our help convicting others? Where in Scripture does it say that God needs us to write nasty posts about other Christians ranting and shrieking about them being apostate? Isn’t it God who decides that?

Don’t go running to Paul and Peter either, they had a relationship. I’m not saying we shouldn’t call sin, sin or call errors into question. Where are matters of conviction? Where is the grace to disagree without making cowardly hit pieces on your webpage? Has the church really come to the place where some would have us say that John Wesley is in Hell because he believed in free will?

Show me the verse that says we will be known as disciples of Christ by our reformed doctrine! Show me the verse that says we will be known as disciples of Christ because we don’t dance, or smoke a cigar, or drink a glass of Wine! Show me the verse that says, we have to preach from a high up pulpit! Show me the verses that say we have to have church three times a week! I want to see them! Show me the verses that say we should wear a certain pattern of clothes on Sunday.

It’s amazing to watch. Don’t wear pants (if you’re a female), don’t get a tattoo, don’t have hair over your collar, don’t listen to music that might involve dancing. Who has bewitched us!!!

Now look, if you hold to some of these beliefs, I’m not saying you shouldn’t. I’m asking why do too many say that others have to. Usually this involves people on both sides of theses issues. Too often we take a matter of personal preference and turn it into some sort of litmus test for salvation.

Seriously, which is worse; to cuss or to call someone apostate–not because they don’t preach the gospel but because they have a New Year’s Eve Party with a glass of champagne?

My problem is I can show you the verses where we are told the litmus test of our faith is how well we love other people. Even people who are wrong, and are caught up in sin. I am the first to admit that I need to do better at this. I am called to love people, the Holy Spirit convicts. Why don’t we consider a lack of love to be the test of apostasy?

What happened to the Holy Spirit? When did He die? Who killed Her?

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81 Comments(+Add)

1   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 9th, 2008 at 6:47 pm

Joe,

No one is going to remember all the great stuff you wrote with that last line…

iggy

2   Matt    
January 9th, 2008 at 7:19 pm

Great post. Like Iggy said, the ODMs are definitely going to ignore the rest of the article once they get to the last line.

Headline on CR?N tomorrow- Joe Martino says God is a woman

3   Chris P.    
January 9th, 2008 at 8:08 pm

You guys accuse others of ignoring the Spirit????
The Spirit and the Word are the rhythm of God, as a good friend of mine wrote in one of his songs. They go together or they are not truly one, or the other.
I only care about scriptural content and it’s literal application.
The Spirit leads us into all truth, first and foremost. Then Lord adds that it is the Spirit’s job to bring His words to rememberance and understanding.
Of course if you believe this then you are considered to be a gnostic.
The problem lies in the extremes of the opposing parties.
The “spirit” without the Word, doesn’t work, as in the charismaniac group who are constantly hearing God give extra-biblical and contradictory revelation.
The “contextualites” who believe that historical and cultural context rule as exegetical method are wrong also.
There are those who are all rules, and no life at all.
The Word stands for all time, for all generations, in all contexts. Only the Spirit can interpret it. Doctrine is important. Jesus taught doctrine, as well as the apostles.
Rules and doctrine are not synonymous.
The Sprirt gives life and revelation.
She didn’t die, Mr. Martini.

4   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 9th, 2008 at 8:44 pm

I only care about scriptural content and it’s literal application.

Really? You had both eyes when I last saw you, yet I’m pretty sure you’ve dealt with lust before.

The Word stands for all time, for all generations, in all contexts.

I agree – the problem comes when you don’t bother to understand the original context before trying to apply it to the current one.

What this has to do with Joe’s article is beyond me, though.

5   merry    
January 9th, 2008 at 8:46 pm

Some random answers to various questions throughout the article:

Fifteen years ago I believed a monster lived at the end of the hall. I tried to get my mother to conform to my beliefs. Our relationship was not affected that I can remember; although I eventually conformed to her opposite beliefs. Yes, it was worth it. I was much relieved. :)

The Holy Spirit is with me at the moment; He is with all believers. He does not die. If the “Her” you were referring to is Mother Nature, She is slowly dying through acts that cause pollution, destruction, and melting glaciers. ;)

6   inquisitor    
January 9th, 2008 at 9:15 pm

Why then did Joe put that last line in? Was it because he wanted all his thinking and typing to be in vain?

7   pastorboy    http://www.thedowngrade2007.blogspot.com
January 9th, 2008 at 9:34 pm

My problem is I can show you the verses where we are told the litmus test of our faith is how well we love other people. Even people who are wrong, and are caught up in sin. I am the first to admit that I need to do better at this. I am called to love people, the Holy Spirit convicts. Why don’t we consider a lack of love to be the test of apostasy?

A lack of love is a test of Apostasy, one of many!
The book of 1 John is filled with these tests-
Walking in the light vs. walking in darkness
Walking in sin vs. walking in repentance
Walking in obedience to his commands vs. disobedience
Loving the world (system) vs. loving the Lord
Loving one another vs. hating one another
Trusting in Jesus vs. trusting in works

And many more….

8   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 9th, 2008 at 9:37 pm

Why then did Joe put that last line in? Was it because he wanted all his thinking and typing to be in vain?

Actually, I think he was trying to make a point – the scripture gives no gender to the Holy Spirit, and so he used male in the second to last sentence and female in the last sentence.

While God has a gender in both Hebrew and Greek, there are some who dogmatically apply this to the HS as a test of faith, as well… I suspect this is why – will the reader fall for the trap of the extra-biblical test of faith (the gender of the HS)…

9   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 9th, 2008 at 9:39 pm

A lack of love is a test of Apostasy, one of many!
The book of 1 John is filled with these tests-
Walking in the light vs. walking in darkness
Walking in sin vs. walking in repentance
Walking in obedience to his commands vs. disobedience
Loving the world (system) vs. loving the Lord
Loving one another vs. hating one another
Trusting in Jesus vs. trusting in works

Yes, but notice that having the “correct” “orthodoxy” as it pertains to systematic theologies is not in your list…

10   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 9th, 2008 at 9:40 pm

OK, two things.
1. I don’t really think the Holy Spirit is dead. Look up making a point using Satire
2. Chris L, you win the prize. I don’t know what that prize is but you win.

11   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 9th, 2008 at 10:01 pm

Chris P

You guys accuse others of ignoring the Spirit????

Yes, and I will add that you also have a weak church and a weaker god that seems to have a weak truth that you all need to defend.

Me I serve the Living God who is Truth and who protects me by the Power of His Holy Spirit.

The Spirit and the Word are the rhythm of God, as a good friend of mine wrote in one of his songs. They go together or they are not truly one, or the other.

So, you also reduce the Holy Spirit to a rhythm… so much for Him being a Person and part of the Trinity…

I only care about scriptural content and it’s literal application.

That would be nice but so far in the context of this post using your own comment you have denied the Trinity and seem very “liberal” in your context of Scripture…

The Spirit leads us into all truth, first and foremost.

The Holy Spirit is God foremost and then leads us in all Truth who is the Person of Jesus Christ… again you deny His person hood and divinity.

Then Lord adds that it is the Spirit’s job to bring His words to rememberance and understanding.

Which you seemed to have denied so far in this comment.

Of course if you believe this then you are considered to be a gnostic.

So far i would say you are gnostic as you deny the Godhood and Person hood of the Holy Spirit and seem to have Him detatched and a “thing” that leads people to truth which also seems to be an abstract thought to you by this comment.

The problem lies in the extremes of the opposing parties.

The problem lies that you seem to have forsaken the Truth in the Person of Jesus Christ and now deny the Holy Spirit… and we affirm the Holy Spirit. So it seem you are believing “lies”.

The “spirit” without the Word, doesn’t work, as in the charismaniac group who are constantly hearing God give extra-biblical and contradictory revelation.

The Word without the Spirit does not work at all. In general I may agree with this sentence but the ones before it seem to contradict almost everything you stated so far.

The “contextualites” who believe that historical and cultural context rule as exegetical method are wrong also.

Anyone who truly studies the bible will acknowledge that it happened in history… so throw out history in the study of Scripture is really ignorant. To act like the Holy Spirit never interacted in history is missing a lot of what the bible teaches.

There are those who are all rules, and no life at all.

Yes, and you tell us all those rules all the time… like right now.

The Word stands for all time, for all generations, in all contexts.

This is true, yet you just now contridicted yourself as you stated it cannot be placed in the context of history.

Only the Spirit can interpret it.

Yes, and that one spirit is not you.

Doctrine is important.

But only the ones you like, right?

Jesus taught doctrine, as well as the apostles.

Yes, and we need to take heed of these when they contradict the Reformers.

Rules and doctrine are not synonymous.

Yet you push your rules here and your pet doctrines with most comment unless you are just drive by put-downing… I mean commenting.

The Sprirt gives life and revelation.

I tell you this often and you mock me over it….

She didn’t die, Mr. Martini.

I think you of all people need lay off the Martini’s

iggy

12   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 9th, 2008 at 10:44 pm

Do you think the Holy Spirit is peeved I’ve been calling Her Him all this time…?

LOL =)…would God take offense to that..?

Joe, great post man, this was really a wondeful sum up of what’s gone on the last couple weeks. Thanks a lot brother.

Joe

13   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 12:26 am

The reason why many refer to the Holy Spirit as a “he” instead of a “her” is because Jesus Christ (Word of Truth) presented him as such:

Nevertheless I tell you THE TRUTH; It is expedient for you that I go away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send HIM unto you. And when HE is come, HE will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgement: (John 16:7,8 KJV).

I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when HE, the SPIRIT OF TRUTH, is come, HE will guide you into all truth: for HE shall not speak of HIMSELF; but whatsoever HE shall hear, that shall HE speak: and HE will shew you things to come (John 16:12,13 KJV).

Some religions also teach that the Holy Spirit is just the “active force of God” and not a person of the Trinity that interacts with us. What does the Bible teach?

As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the HOLY GHOST said, Seperate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them (Acts 13:2 KJV).

Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the HOLY GHOST to preach the word in Asia (Acts 16:6 KJV).

The reference to the Holy Spirit as a “her” in this post may be an attempt to reach out to anyone in the Gnostic religion that may be reading this post. Some believe that the Holy Spirit is a female entity called Sophia (wisdom).

As far as God referenced in Bible scripture, He is presented in the masculine sense as “Father”, but there is also a representation of a part of God in the female context also. C.I Scofield had written commentary on this:

“The etymological signification of Almighty God (El Shaddai) is both interesting and touching. God (El) signifies the “Strong One”. The qualifying word Shaddai is formed from the Hebrew word “shad”, the breast, invariably used in Scripture for a woman’s breast; e.g. Gen 49:25, Job 3:12, Psa. 22:9, Song. 1:13, Isa. 28:9, Ezk. 16:7. Shaddai therefore means primarily “the breasted”. (C.I. Scofield)”

This might explain some of the other scriptures that I have pondered on. If God is represented as part female also, then that might explain these following scriptures. This is a theory I have.

And God said, Let us make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness (Genesis 1:26 KJV).

This has been traditionally taught that man is created as a “trinity” like God, but what if this verse (Gen 1:26 KJV) was refering to man as being originally created as both male and female, because it was after Adam was created that “Woman” was taken out of man:

And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman because she WAS TAKEN OUT OF MAN (Genesis 2:23 KJV).

Would that then explain this following verse concerning the generations of man?

This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called THEIR name ADAM (not Adam and Eve), in the day when they were created (Genesis 5:1,2 KJV).

The conclusion that I came to after studying this is that God was presented as having both male and female attributes in Himself proving that He did not need to find a female “god” to reproduce. God is complete in Himself as Creator and needed no other help to create life. I pray to God the Father not to God the “Mother”. After “Woman” was taken out of man, the Bible refers to all mankind as being made in the image of “Adam”, incomplete without the “woman”:

And Adam lived an hundred and thirty years, and begat a son in his (Adam) own likeness, after his (Adam) image; and called his name Seth: (Genesis 5:3 KJV).

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one FLESH (Genesis 2:24 KJV).

Man is “flesh”, but God is a SPIRIT!

God is a SPIRIT: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth (John 4:24 KJV).

When God created man, He breathed the “breath” of life into his nostrils thus becoming a “living soul”. When man is “born of the Spirit” (i.e. born again) Jesus breathes the Spirit of Life into man’s HEART and man becomes “spiritual” i.e. new creature). Jesus calls the disciples “brethern” (Romans 8:29 KJV) (1 John 3:2 KJV)(2 Peter 1:4 KJV).

And when he had said this, he BREATHED on them, and saith unto them, Recieve ye the HOLY GHOST (John 20:22). (40 days before the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentacost).

And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the seconed man is the Lord from heaven. As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly. And as we have borne the image of theearthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. Now this I say, brethern, that flesh and blood CANNOT inherit the KINGDOM OF GOD; neither doth coruption inherit incorruption (1 Corinthians 15:45-50 KJV).

I have already tried to explain the need for a “spiritual newbirth” to be truly a Christian on a previous post, I will not duplicate that here. You can read about it in my ebook When Faith Came or my ebook on Marriage: Till Death do we Part?
The Bible says that “flesh and blood” cannot inherit the Kingdom of God, but what about “flesh and Spirit”?

Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and OF THE SPIRIT, he cannot ENTER into the kingdom of God. That whcih is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be BORN AGAIN (John 3:5-7 KJV).

Silly humans…….

F Whittenburg
http://www.christiannewbirth.com/whenfaithcame.html

14   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 12:35 am

Whit,

Please see Joe’s comment from January 9, 2008, 9:40 pm above in response to my post right above it. Joe confirmed why he used “she” -

Actually, I think he was trying to make a point – the scripture gives no gender to the Holy Spirit, and so he used male in the second to last sentence and female in the last sentence.

While God has a gender in both Hebrew and Greek, there are some who dogmatically apply this to the HS as a test of faith, as well… I suspect this is why – will the reader fall for the trap of the extra-biblical test of faith (the gender of the HS)…

Joe used both “he” and “she” for the genderless Holy Spirit to make a point about majoring in the minors – not to refer to gnostics…

15   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 12:49 am

“Joe used both “he” and “she” for the genderless Holy Spirit to make a point about majoring in the minors – not to refer to gnostics… ”

But Jesus plainly presented the Holy Ghost as a “HE”, not genderless, as I pointed out in my previous post:

“The reason why many refer to the Holy Spirit as a “he” instead of a “her” is because Jesus Christ (Word of Truth) presented him as such:

Nevertheless I tell you THE TRUTH; It is expedient for you that I go away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send HIM unto you. And when HE is come, HE will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgement: (John 16:7,8 KJV).

I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when HE, the SPIRIT OF TRUTH, is come, HE will guide you into all truth: for HE shall not speak of HIMSELF; but whatsoever HE shall hear, that shall HE speak: and HE will shew you things to come (John 16:12,13 KJV).”

F Whittenburg
http://www.christiannewbirth.com/whenfaithcame.html

16   Neil    
January 10th, 2008 at 1:02 am

Wouldn’t we all say that any gender references, when applied to the Godhead, are metaphorical anyway.

I’m giggy with “he” for all three.

17   Ian    http://lostintheheartofsomewhere.blogspot.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 1:56 am

It is pretty clear that there is no gender to the Spirit – Ruach, the Hebrew word used for spirit (e.g Gen 1) is a feminine word. The Greek word used, Pneuma, is neutral. Jesus referred to the Spirit in the masculine, probably using the term in a non-gender specific way which would have been understood so at the time (as we sometimes still use ‘mankind’ etc). The Bible doesn’t give a gender for Spirit, and as our language is really pretty insufficient to express the things of God, surely either gender will do?

18   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 2:03 am

Backing up Ian, the word ελεγξει, used in John 16:8 is not gender-specific, though the masculine is assumed. This is why I noted that the Holy Spirit IS gender-neutral in the original language, and is referred to as the Spirit (or the Helper, the Holy Spirit, etc.) which is also an implied gender neutrality.

Unlike God, whose name is masculine in the Hebrew and is also referred to as “the Father” (among a host of other references), the Holy Spirit is gender neutral.

Unwittingly, Whit, in a way by belaboring this point, you have proven Joe’s point of including the language in the last two sentences in the article…

majoring in the minors…

19   Kevin I    
January 10th, 2008 at 8:40 am

It’s just flat easier to use a list of rules someone has written down out of their opinions then to follow the Holy Spirit.

It’s quicker to let others interperet scripture for you then to give ear to the Spirit as you read.

It’s easier to live a life of giving authority to the loudest and most legalistic in your faith community then to live by faith.

It’s the easiest path to just let people tell you what to do then to be faithful to the movement of the Holy Spirit.

Why does it seem like the Holy Spirit is dead over at these sites and in many congregations? Because it’s the easiest way to go, just to follow what the loudest and most strict say, because then there is no guesswork, there is less of a chance of making a mistake when the only person you’re listening to tells you you’re doing fine (despite the Spirt’s groaning!)

It’s easier to set up a controlling, xenophobic, beligerent member of the body of Christ as your guide then to take on the difficult, but rewarding way of being faithful to the Holy Spirit and dilligent in the scriptures.

20   clearly    http://seeingclearly.wordpress.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:48 am

Joe,

Way to be in touch with the divine feminine.

Chris L, you seriously want us to believe that because the subject is in included in the Greek verb that that leaves the gender of the Holy Spirit open to discussion? You just said that God the Father is always mentioned in the masculine. I believe that placing the Holy Spirit in the feminine (as Joe did), is a breach on the unity of the Godhead. So the tri-une God is multi-gendered? There is definitely room to stress to the “threeness” of the trinity, but this is not one of those places.

Maybe you guys should get a TNIV tattoos.

21   Ian    http://www.lostintheheartofsomewhere.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:57 am

clearly

No – God is not multi-gendered, He (yes I am using a masculine pronoun) is beyond gender. If he made man and woman in His image then both genders must be a reflection of God. The unity of God is not in gender – the Fatherhood of God is the characteristic of that personhood within the Trinity, but the Father is not a man – He is God. The Spirit is referred to using both genders, but is not a man or a woman, but is God. There is the unity.

(BTW – the TNIV always refers to God in the masculine – just to get you straight on that).

22   Neil    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:58 am

Clearly,

Q: “So the tri-une God is multi-gendered?”

A w/a Q: is the triune Godhead gendered at all?

23   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 9:58 am

Dave,
You crack me up.

24   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 9:59 am

Neil,
Yes, God is gendered if it allows Dave an opportunity to attack rather than look at the issues.

25   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:18 am

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espuosed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost (Matthew 1:18 KJV).

Chris L, In the imaculate conception, what was the Holy Ghost’s role? That of “seed planter” masculine or “seed carrier” feminine? I will make that even more specific. Did Mary take the masculine role, or the feminine role in the birth of Jesus? When the Holy Ghost plant’s the seed of Christ in our heart, do we take the masuline role or the feminine role in that spiritual union? Paul said:

My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you (Galatians 4:19 KJV).

Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seed, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ (Galatians 3:16 KJV).

F Whittenburg
http://www.christiannewbirth.com/whenfaithcame.html

26   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 10:21 am

F.W.
Are you honestly suggesting that Mary had sex with the Holy Spirit?

27   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 10:21 am

You’re completely missing the point of the article, Whit, and – in effect – validating its claims…

28   Ian    http://www.lostintheheartofsomewhere.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:25 am

F.W.

Why are you ignoring the textual examination of gender here and making spurious analogies based on superficial readings of Scripture? Seriosuly – what about the complexity of language used throughout Scripture to refer to the Spirit?

29   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:48 am

Hello Joe, Chris L, Ian

Let me approach this from another direction. Let’s turn this around then. In your understanding of scripture, what would be the reason or benefit to the reader to present the Holy Spirit as “genderless”?

F Whittenburg
http://www.christiannewbirth.com/whenfaithcame.html

30   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 10:50 am

Sorry Whit, I’d like some answers of my own first. Are you really suggesting that Mary had sex with the Holy Spirit? Are you further suggesting that God/Holy Spirit has a anatomically correct body part?

31   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:51 am

Ian said: “The Spirit is referred to using both genders”.

Where?

F Whittenburg

32   Ian    http://www.lostintheheartofsomewhere.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:53 am

F.W.

As I said earlier:

It is pretty clear that there is no gender to the Spirit – Ruach, the Hebrew word used for spirit (e.g Gen 1) is a feminine word. The Greek word used, Pneuma, is neutral. Jesus referred to the Spirit in the masculine, probably using the term in a non-gender specific way which would have been understood so at the time (as we sometimes still use ‘mankind’ etc).

33   Erica Martino    http://joemartino.name/erica
January 10th, 2008 at 10:56 am

Whittenburg,
Let me turn this around on you, why does it matter if the Holy Spirit is considered He or She? It obviously annoys you to the point that you missed the point of the entire post so tell us why you are willing to fight over this issue?

34   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:58 am

Joe said: “Sorry Whit, I’d like some answers of my own first. Are you really suggesting that Mary had sex with the Holy Spirit? Are you further suggesting that God/Holy Spirit has a anatomically correct body part?”

Apparently you didn’t read my post, we are talking on a spiritual level I thought. I made a distinction between the two in my previous post. I said:

Man is “flesh”, but God is a SPIRIT!

God is a SPIRIT: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth (John 4:24 KJV).

The result of that union is a divine human being, Jesus Christ. Both Son of man and Son of God.

I will try to keep my discussions on this post to a natural level from now own if I can.

F Whittenburg

35   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 11:03 am

Thank you Whit, (Seriously, what should I call you?) now after reading your answer to that question, My wife’s question is very salient. Why does this bother you so much and Neil’s question is excellent. Do spirit’s have a gender?

36   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 11:05 am

Erica said: “Let me turn this around on you, why does it matter if the Holy Spirit is considered He or She? It obviously annoys you to the point that you missed the point of the entire post so tell us why you are willing to fight over this issue? ”

I thought that Joe put the post up for “discussion” which is what I was doing. I am just curious how people come to their conclusions that is why I shared how I came to mine. I thought the post was open to conversation. What was the purpose of the post then? I must have missed it’s purpose. Was it meant to be a blanket statement of fact? Please explain.

F Whittenburg

37   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 11:15 am

The point of the post has nothing to do with the gender of the Holy Spirit.

38   Erica Martino    http://joemartino.name/erica
January 10th, 2008 at 11:33 am

By all means add to the discussion. I enjoy understanding why people do the things they do. There is an entire post here and you are choosing to discuss one line at the very end. I was just wondering why this is such a big deal to you?

39   F Whittenburg    http://www.christiannewbirth.com
January 10th, 2008 at 11:35 am

Joe said: “The point of the post has nothing to do with the gender of the Holy Spirit.”

Was the post then about people arguing over the minors like Chris L said? I am getting better at this blogging stuff. I am teachable. At least I didn’t put words in your mouth this time. :D

Although If I WERE you, I would have argued the position from the verses that list Christ as “the seed of the woman”. Why? I will let you study that mystery on your own….

F Whittenburg
http://www.christiannewbirth.com/whenfaithcame.html

40   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 11:46 am

The point of the post was that as a church we don’t really believe that the Holy Spirit will lead other people into all truth, like Jesus said He would, we don’t really believe that the Holy Spirit can convict other people without our help.

41   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 5:07 pm

The Holy Spirit is in fact “hyper-masculine”. For the physicists, that means that the male or female gender are shadows of the “hyper-masculine” or “hyper-feminine”.

Scott Hahn of Opus Dei claims that the Holy Spirit is “hyper-feminine”. Regrettably for him, this is the definition that Jesus gave us regarding “Blaspheming the Holy Spirit”.

Mary was overshadowed by the “hyper-masculine” Holy Spirit, and so became with child – the Son of God.

The great irony is that through Mary’s utter and complete inequality and surrender – femininity – she became a mother. She became the feminine manifestation of the the hyper-masculine.

Motherhood is a shadow of the hyper-masculine, not hyper-femininity. Eve, acting as a goddess, was the shadow of the hyper-feminine.

42   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 5:52 pm

Quick someone get a shovel! The BS is getting deep in here.

43   Ian    http://lostintheheartofsomewhere.blogspot.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 6:02 pm

Anon

What??????????

44   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 6:11 pm

Anon,

This is about as far fetched as “Sophia” making the Holy Spirit female… in fact I see what you wrote as Gnosticism…

Do you not believe that the Holy Spirit is a spirit and without gender… Do you not believer that The Holy Spirit is also a Person?

iggy

45   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 6:30 pm

Anon,
I normally don’t talk to anonymous people but I love to make exceptions for people who do their research in Dan Brown’s writings…

46   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 6:57 pm

My brain exploded. Thanks Anon. No love for you. Dan Brown stinks.

Joe

47   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 7:24 pm

First you know, then you speak. If Dan Brown has anything to do with this, he says that we must worship the “hyper-feminine”.

Gender is the shadow of either the hyper-masculine or hyper-feminine. The Holy Spirit has no gender, He is not a male anatomically for example. Rather, he is hyper-masculine.

The male gender of humanity, and females who are mothers are shadows of this hyper-masculinity mapped onto our three dimensional world.

The great delusion will be that the Holy Spirit is hyper-feminine, or without “hyper-gender”. A recent well-made movie, Children of Men, explains this well. The mother is worshiped as a shadow of the “hyper-feminine”.

48   merry    
January 10th, 2008 at 7:26 pm

“The great irony is that through Mary’s utter and complete inequality and surrender – femininity – she became a mother. She became the feminine manifestation of the the hyper-masculine.”

*Round of applause*

This is the most hilarious thing I have heard all day. That’s awesome. Almost. Awesome enough to cheer me up. Thanks.

49   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 7:32 pm

Anon,
I’m going to back to my no response to Anon comments. To be honest you’re scaring me.

50   Chris L    http://www.fishingtheabyss.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 7:33 pm

Mr/Ms Anon -

I can see why you wouldn’t want to assign your name to what you wrote. I’d say that you’re giving a perfect example of an extra-biblical “system” and doing a good job demonstrating why it’s just best to stick with scripture instead of creating systems to string it together…

51   mandyreed    
January 10th, 2008 at 7:36 pm

oh wow.

52   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 7:43 pm

Chris L,

It is Mr. Anon – I am not Ingrid.

Does the Bible tell you what vitamins pregnant women should take?

Does the Bible tell you the physics equations used to determine the speed of an airbag deployment in an automobile accident?

Is it useful for pregnant women to know what vitamins to take or for cars to have safety systems?

I suggest you think about your responses more carefully.

53   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 7:46 pm

Joe,

There is no reason to be afraid.

There probably is reason for you to stop commenting, as your comments have little reasoning and less merit.

54   Phil Miller    http://veritasfellowship.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 7:57 pm

There probably is reason for you to stop commenting, as your comments have little reasoning and less merit.

Bwahahaha…..bwahahaha….

Can’t…stop…laughing…

Bwahahaha…..bwahahaha….

55   Neil    
January 10th, 2008 at 8:09 pm

Anon,

From my experience all mothers get “hyper” at some point in time…

Neil

56   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 8:25 pm

Neil,

You never studied Physics or Math, did you?

57   Neil    
January 10th, 2008 at 8:29 pm

Anon,

Ad hominem… nice comeback.

Neil

58   Erica Martino    http://joemartino.name/erica
January 10th, 2008 at 8:32 pm

Anon,
Out of curiosity which Joe are you talking to?

59   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 8:32 pm

Anon,
That hurt, really it did. Coming from someone afraid to put their name up there. Calling me stupid, well that just hurts…

60   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 8:52 pm

I think you’re hyper-weird Anon…=)

Snark!

Joe

61   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 8:54 pm

Joe M,

I am not calling your stupid.

However, I do not understand why or how you came to the conclusion you did with this comment:

>>Anon,
I normally don’t talk to anonymous people but I love to make exceptions for people who do their research in Dan Brown’s writings…

62   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 8:57 pm

Joe C,

Luckily, it does not matter what you think.

63   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 8:59 pm

Well, if you ever listen to Dan Brown talk, he goes on and on about the same type of things you’re saying.
You know, luckily it does not matter what you think either

64   Weird Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:02 pm

Not so ‘luckily’, Anon, it only matters what God thinks. And sheesh, I was only joking around anyways. You’re no weirder than me.

Besides, I happen to think God disagrees with your new age sounding premise. How bout some Scriptures to prove otherwise?

Joe

65   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:03 pm

Lame…my comment got put in a moderation queue because I changed my name to be funny. Lame. That’s hyper-lame of the mod-computer. LOL

Joe

66   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:09 pm

Joe C,

You are not ready to hear Scripture – you do not have the listening skills demonstrated by your misconception that this is a New Age idea.

67   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:09 pm

Joe M,

If you read carefully, you will note that this concept is in fact the exact opposite of Dan Brown – go back and check again.

68   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 9:11 pm

No, it’s the exact opposite of his “code” book, not what he says he believes. Go study DB some more. Maybe you can come back with your name and a legit email.

69   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:13 pm

Whoops, wrong again Joe M

70   Joe Martino    http://joemartino.name
January 10th, 2008 at 9:14 pm

OK, well good luck with that Anon. Really good luck with your…I’m not even sure how to describe it.

71   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:16 pm

So Anon, now you’re decided who God gave the Holy Spirit to and who He didn’t? Are you now regulating who can and cannot understand Scripture? You would base your assumption that I am (despite having read my Bible through and through for many years now) not ready to hear Scripture?

Is this how you answer people who ask you to back up your claims with the Bible? That’s cultish bro.

Joe

72   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 9:22 pm

It is Mr. Anon – I am not Ingrid.

Does the Bible tell you what vitamins pregnant women should take?

Does the Bible tell you the physics equations used to determine the speed of an airbag deployment in an automobile accident?

Is it useful for pregnant women to know what vitamins to take or for cars to have safety systems?

I suggest you think about your responses more carefully.

It is more like you need to think about what are the wuestions that matter that one can gain from scritpure…

Really I think very few of us have issue with you “presumed” unasked question… whatever it is.

I suggest reading this to gain a bit of prespective…

Job 38

1. Then the LORD answered Anon out of the storm. He said:
2. “Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge?
3. Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.
4. “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand.
5. Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?
6. On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone–
7. while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?
8. “Who shut up the sea behind doors when it burst forth from the womb,
9. when I made the clouds its garment and wrapped it in thick darkness,
10. when I fixed limits for it and set its doors and bars in place,
11. when I said, `This far you may come and no farther; here is where your proud waves halt’?
12. “Have you ever given orders to the morning, or shown the dawn its place,
13. that it might take the earth by the edges and shake the wicked out of it?
14. The earth takes shape like clay under a seal; its features stand out like those of a garment.
15. The wicked are denied their light, and their upraised arm is broken.
16. “Have you journeyed to the springs of the sea or walked in the recesses of the deep?
17. Have the gates of death been shown to you? Have you seen the gates of the shadow of death ?
18. Have you comprehended the vast expanses of the earth? Tell me, if you know all this.
19. “What is the way to the abode of light? And where does darkness reside?
20. Can you take them to their places? Do you know the paths to their dwellings?
21. Surely you know, for you were already born! You have lived so many years!
22. “Have you entered the storehouses of the snow or seen the storehouses of the hail,
23. which I reserve for times of trouble, for days of war and battle?
24. What is the way to the place where the lightning is dispersed, or the place where the east winds are scattered over the earth?
25. Who cuts a channel for the torrents of rain, and a path for the thunderstorm,
26. to water a land where no man lives, a desert with no one in it,
27. to satisfy a desolate wasteland and make it sprout with grass?
28. Does the rain have a father? Who fathers the drops of dew?
29. From whose womb comes the ice? Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens
30. when the waters become hard as stone, when the surface of the deep is frozen?
31. “Can you bind the beautiful Pleiades? Can you loose the cords of Orion?
32. Can you bring forth the constellations in their seasons or lead out the Bear with its cubs?
33. Do you know the laws of the heavens? Can you set up [God's ] dominion over the earth?
34. “Can you raise your voice to the clouds and cover yourself with a flood of water?
35. Do you send the lightning bolts on their way? Do they report to you, `Here we are’?
36. Who endowed the heart with wisdom or gave understanding to the mind ?
37. Who has the wisdom to count the clouds? Who can tip over the water jars of the heavens
38. when the dust becomes hard and the clods of earth stick together?
39. “Do you hunt the prey for the lioness and satisfy the hunger of the lions
40. when they crouch in their dens or lie in wait in a thicket?
41. Who provides food for the raven when its young cry out to God and wander about for lack of food?

iggy

73   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:24 pm

Now Anon, see what Iggy did? That’s good. It’s trustworthy because it’s from God, and not man.

Joe

74   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:27 pm

Joe C,

It is obvious by your responses that you do not have the listening skills developed to understand Scripture of any complexity.

Stick to the milk.

75   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:29 pm

iggy,

Stick to the milk – same lack of listening skills and ability to understand complex scripture.

76   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 9:29 pm

How insulting.

77   Anonymous    
January 10th, 2008 at 9:38 pm

But true

78   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 9:52 pm

Anon,

If what you are stating was scripture, one might have a chance in understanding it as it would be truth…

Maybe if you used a bit of scripture even that would help in your getting the point across…

First you know, then you speak.

I agree, and you know absolutely nothing about me to make any judgment about me… so I think you need heed your own advise and humble out a bit. Your pride is showing and so far I would not accept much from you as arrogance can keep even one who “knows” from speaking truth clearly.

So… we stand at an impasse as you only come across as one who desires everyone to bow to his teaching when he is blind that there is no one to teach.

A leader cannot lead if no one follows and a leader must show his worthiness to be followed to have a following… unless they want a mindless cult that bleats over every wolf cry.

iggy

79   iggy    http://wordofmouthministries.blogspot.com/
January 10th, 2008 at 10:18 pm

Joe,

Just read the post again… good job. Sorry the comments were so hijacked. I hoped that by calling attention to the only point some would talk about would make them go deeper, but it seems that some only swim in the shallow end…

As far as the Holy Spirit being dead… I think that is true in many churches… I found in some that tradition replaced the HS while in others programs did Him in.

Mostly I find that many people profess a “belief” but in their own action, would take a bull and sacrifice it and follow the OT to the “T” if they could… (Of course it would be still picking and choosing on their part.)

I believe that many think these rules “do not touch, do not eat, do not drink” are sincere. I think though that they miss that they have become salt that lost its flavor…

They need the Life of Christ to live the Christian life… without the Holy Spirit, one cannot live the Christian life… so the replacement of the Holy Spirit is man made rules that sound godly and have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence. I think that is evident in the sensuous words people like Ingrid use in their writings… it reveals their own lascivious heart and really says nothing about the people they attack.

To lose one’s first Love, is when we lose walking in the Power of the Holy Spirit… we fall from grace to works and deceive ourselves thinking we please God by our “sacrifices”.

I think God sees it like He states in Malachi…

Behold, I will corrupt your seed, and spread dung upon your faces, even the dung of your solemn feasts; and one shall take you away with it.

The seed of their faith becomes faithlessness and their sacrifices are as dung wiped on their faces…

Only Jesus pleased God… and unless we walk in His righteousness and in His obedience, we only make ourselves more offensive to God…

I do believe God’s grace goes out more than most realize… yet, the harsh words spoken to those “religionists” seems to indicate that their sin is even a worse sin that others… even homosexuality…

be blessed,
iggy

80   Joe C    http://www.joe4gzus.blogspot.com
January 10th, 2008 at 10:52 pm

Good post Iggy, I hear you man, I second that.

But…I think lying is just as bad a homosexuality is just as bad as murder is just as bad as hatred.

If that makes sense. Sin is sin. Makes you think, if so many Christians say that homosexuals can’t be Christians, what are they saying about themselves since I guarentee they lie at least once a week? Liars can’t be Christians….huh?

Joe

81   merry    
January 11th, 2008 at 12:46 am

I can’t wait until Jesus comes back . . . :(