Though this title sounds heretical, Jesus told His followers and therefore us, “… it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go the Helper will not come …” (John 16:7). To say it another way, having the Holy Spirit is better than having the physical person of Jesus on earth.
In preparation for Pentecost June 9, 2019, here are five reasons why the presence of the Holy Spirit is a wonder worth celebrating.
1. The Holy Spirit is everywhere. Jesus was confined to a body, and therefore to a single place. As a result, only those people in physical proximity to Him could hope to be near Jesus. The Holy Spirit, however, can be and is resident around the globe everywhere a believer is found because He dwells within, guiding each person’s life and heart. Amazing!
2. The Spirit will be “with us forever” (John 14:16)—and in every circumstance. Unlike Jesus’ physical presence on earth for 33 years, the Spirit’s with-ness is not limited by a physical body.
I am so grateful for this promise that He is always with me, whether on a flight that is disconcertingly bumpy or when I’m feeling like “I can’t do this anymore,” or when I’m simply completing mundane, thankless tasks for the thousandth time. His ever-presence is a comfort.
3. The Spirit reminds me of Jesus’ words. My flawed faulty memory is helped by His eternal Word every time I ask. He will “teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I (Jesus) said to you,” (John 14:26). His presence offers a constant, gentle whisper of truth, no matter where I am or how often I forget what Jesus said. And the Spirit never becomes impatient with me which I can hardly believe in my own impatience with so much in life.
4. The Holy Spirit “will guide you.” Like taking a trip to a national park where the park rangers give every visitor a guide book, so the Holy Spirit guides each one of us through our unique obstacle-and adventure-laden journey of life … if you and I will ask (John 16:13).
5. “The Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” (Romans 8:26) is an amazing stunning promise to us, the deeply beloved of God.
There have been many times in my life when I have not known what to pray because I was bewildered or afraid or in pain. Yet in those times the Spirit was praying for me even as I was unaware and oblivious. What a Comforter is the Spirit who was given to be personally present, sent to us from the throne room of God!
Soon it will be 50 days from Resurrection Day, the ancient Feast of Weeks, or Pentecost, the day the Holy Spirit was given to fulfill Jesus’ promise to us.
Will you join us in celebrating this underappreciated Gift from the Father?
And if you’re interested, Francis Chan has written an excellent book, Forgotten God, acknowledging we’ve forgotten Him in our daily lives, but offering helpful encouragement and hope for experiencing His promised presence in your life.
To help you mark and celebrate this landmark day, watch for our next post with a few ideas to help you communicate the wonder of Pentecost to your family.
7 thoughts on “Five Reasons The Holy Spirit is Better Than Jesus”
I respectfully must share that I find this type of sensational titling immature and divisive. We should not be looking to scandalize each other to make our points. God is not in competition or ranking with Himself in any way. Every knee shall bow and tongue confess that Jesus is Lord. The Holy Spirit ever confesses the Lordship of Christ. In Christ dwelt ALL the fullness of the Godhead bodily. This post of yours could have been a wonderful message on the Holy Spirit without the presumptuous and even blasphemous attempt to rank the persons of God almighty. The Holy Spirit’s nature and purpose is Holiness which is Godly Love. If He comforts it’s not just to sooth the riled chemicals of fleshly fear but to comfort the believer in Holiness of loving trust to God who preserves. Every last move of the Holy Spirit will be in the nature of Holiness (godly love). Anyway, if I seem harsh, please forgive me as well.
The Holy Spirit is NOT “better” than Jesus and the title does sound heretical so thank you for providing the context. The role and personhood of the Holy Spirit was to their “advantage” (John 16:7). This text does not diminish the personhood of Jesus but rather further reveals His glorious work.
Each member of the Trinity is Co-eternal and share equally in of the unique qualities (“incommunicable”) possessed by God alone such as omnipotence (“all-powerful”) omniscience (“all-knowing”) and omnipresence (present everywhere and always).
God has always existed
The Father is eternal: Psalm 90.2
The Son is eternal: Micah 5.1 – 2
The Holy Spirit is eternal: Romans 8.11
God is omnipotent
The Father is all-powerful: Isaiah 64.8
The Son is all-powerful: John 1.1
The Holy Spirit is all-powerful: Psalm 62.11
God is omniscient
The Father is all-knowing: 1 John 3.20
The Son is all-knowing: John 16.30 and 21.17
The Holy Spirit is all-knowing: 1 Corinthians 2. 10 – 11
God is omnipresent
The Father is everywhere: 1 Kings 8.27
The Son is everywhere: Matthew 28.20
The Holy Spirit is everywhere: Psalm 139.7 – 10
Titles like this, taken of context, can become buzz phrases for extreme and erroneous doctrines.
In position, God is one (Eph. 4:4-7). In function, God is three (1 Peter 1:2). Jesus died on the cross, not the Holy Spirit (nor the Father). However, among other things, the Holy Spirit testifies of Jesus and leads us to Him (John 15:26).
There is a phrase I found in an article written by J.D Greer that summarizes your point in a concise way (https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/whats-better-than-jesus-beside-you):
“The Spirit inside you is better than Jesus beside you.”
Thank you and may God continue to bless your ministry!
Thanks for writing and I’m grateful you understood my intent. I totally agree with what you wrote and J.D. Greer also. “The Spirit inside you is better than Jesus beside you” is well said. And that was my point exactly!
A beautiful encouragement after a 4 hour bumpy flight. Your ministry is such an encouragement. Thank you for not just retiring!
This is just in time. Words have been difficult to find to encourage my best friend, Mary, who has been diagnosed with another cancer again. This is her third diagnosis. It is so reassuring that the Holy Spirit will intercede in prayer and comfort while words are limited and emotions are heavy.
So sorry to hear about your sweet friend Mary.
I know you will be a great comfort to her but none so great as our dearest Friend who never leaves us or forsakes us and prays for us always.
Bless you and may God bring healing and hope to Mary.
Keep writing. We love it!