1 & 2 Thess.
1 & 2 Timothy
1 & 2 Peter
Gifts of the Spirit
Exposition of The Spirit in Matthew
1 The fire in the shape of tongues was to indicate the purpose of the manifestation and it did. Immediately afterward they spake in tongues. This compares with other manifestations. The burning bush that was not consumed indicated Jewry would not be destroyed. The dove at Christ’s baptism indicated He would preach a gospel of peace.
2 The same proof is evident in Acts 11:16 and Acts 1:5.
3 The stimulation of the brain by an electric current, Voodoo drumming, certain drugs such as mescaline, and orgiastic dancing can produce hysterical excitement but no Christian would claim that result is "getting the Spirit".
These words of Jesus are very similar to Mark 13:11; Luke 12:11,12; and 21:15 although all were spoken at different times. Verse 23 ties the period of their application to the other gospel passages. The Lord shows the conditions they might expect, not immediately, but after His ascension. Once this is realized, the connection with the Parakletos1 is evident. Luke 21:15 identifies the gift (Spirit which speaketh in you) as the "word of wisdom" and this is confirmed by Acts 6:10.
These words cannot apply to us as is evident from the context. Rather we must "handle accurately the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15).
1 see notes on John 14-16.
This was the sin of not recognizing the obvious miracles that Jesus performed by the power of the Holy Spirit. The Pharisees asserted that "this fellow casts out demons by Beelzebub, the prince of the demons." In other words they asserted that the miracles, which they knew must be the work of God, were done with the help of an evil spirit!
1 see also Mark 3:29; Luke 12:10.
The narrative concerning the unclean spirit concludes: "Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation" (v.45). This statement indicates that the preceding two verses form a parable of comparison and are not to be taken literally. The parable has been explained as follows
The nation of Israel had experienced a cleansing by the teaching of John the Baptist. There "went out to him Jerusalem… and were baptized of him" (Matt. 3:5,6). The house was "cleaned" - "swept and garnished" (v. 44), but it was without its real occupant - the Messiah. "He came to his own, (house, RSV) and his own received him not" (John 1:11). The refusal of Israel to respond to the teaching of Christ merited the description: "and the last state of that man (Israel) is worse than the first" (prior to the cleansing of John’s teaching). (Matt. 12:45). Jesus said: "The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgement with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and behold, a greater than Jonas is here." (v. 41). The parable was in effect, a prophecy. In AD70 the frenzied ("demonized") resistance of the Jews to the Roman invasion resulted in their national destruction1.’
From this explanation we gather that "unclean spirit" refers to "sinful practices and beliefs". "Trespasses and sins" are termed in Eph. 2:2,3 "the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience."
1 AWSA, P. 174.
The unclean spirit of v. 43 returned to the house of Israel, along with seven other more sinful practices and beliefs. It is difficult to know whether seven is to be regarded as a number or as completeness.
LESSON: Having rid ourselves of evil we cannot remain in this state of emptiness. We must replace it with good, otherwise the evil returns manifold. "Overcome evil with good". cf. Eph. 4:22-321.
1 see J. Carter, "Parables of the Messiah", TCM, P. 83-86.
3 1 John 4:1-3.
"the words that Thou gavest me I have given to them; and they received them, and truly understood that I came forth from thee, and they believed that Thou didst send me." (John 17:8).
1 TEST, Vol. 44, P. 455.
David was a prophet (Acts 2:30) and wrote under the inspiration of God, through the gift of prophecy, many Messianic Psalms. Psalm 110, which Matt. 22:44 quotes from, is one of those which David wrote by the Spirit gift of prophecy.
1 see 2 Sam. 23:2; Acts 1:16; 2 Peter 1:21.
"This passage has been proposed as teaching the baptism of a believer into the Holy Spirit, with the idea that he is filled with the Holy Spirit. But the grammatical construction just will not allow such an idea. If the text read baptism into the Father, into the Son, and into the Holy Spirit the idea might be sustained. But this is not so; it is a baptism into a name; and it is a baptism into one name not three names . . . . This is doctrinally important; there is only one name. We have Peter on the day of Pentecost as the interpreter of these words of the Lord, and we must be guided by him as to what he (Christ) meant . . . in Matt. 28. Speaking by the Holy Spirit he gave this interpretation of his Master’s words:
‘Repent, and be baptized every one of you in (into) the name of Jesus Christ’ (Acts 2:38).
In Acts 4:12, Peter declares emphatically "there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." So the name of Jesus Christ must be equivalent to "the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit"… here is no warrant to read into them the idea that each believer was to receive a baptism of the Holy Spirit, as ‘the means whereby God communicates His blessings in these days of His Son’s sojourn in heaven.’ "2
This one "name" is the name of Divine Manifestation - YAHWEH3. When a sinner is added to the name, the immersed believer is IN the name (Acts 10:48).
The reader is referred to ‘John 14-16 additional notes’ for a suggestion as to the meaning of ‘the Holy Spirit’ in this verse.
1 The reader is referred to "A collection of the Evidence for and against the Traditional Wording of the Baptismal Phrase in Matt. 28:19", cf. TEST, Vol. 32, P. 80-82, 105. See http://jesus-messiah.com/apologetics/catholic/matthew2819.html viewed 4 July 2017.
2 PGHS, P. 61.
3 That the disciples did not attach the importance some have done to the specific use of the four letters which form the name (YHWH) is evident from Acts (cf. 3:6; 4:9-12).
"WE MUST WORK THE WORKS..."
When we compare these words with John 5:36, we see that the above-mentioned clause means that the working of miracles, by the power of the Holy Spirit, was a testimony from God to the authority of the Lord Jesus and later of the apostles (cf. Heb. 2:34; Mark 16:20). The Lord uses the term "we" (RV and RSV) and not "I", so indicating that the verse relates not only to the Lord himself but also to the apostles.
"NIGHT COMES, WHEN NO ONE CAN WORK"
The Lord is most definitely saying that the time would come when the Holy Spirit works would cease. Micah 3:6 is most interesting in this connection, for the Spirit there prophesies that the sun would go down on the prophets and the day would be black over the Jewish nation, and that it would be night without vision (cf. Joel 2:31). Associated with this prophecy in Micah 3 is the destruction of Jerusalem because of the stubbornness of the Jewish leaders (v. 12).
"AS LONG AS I AM IN THE WORLD, I AM THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD"
Whilst the Lord Jesus departed to the Right Hand of the Ancient of Days before Pentecost, he was still in a real sense with the apostles in their ministry. Mark 16:20 reads, "And they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by the signs that attended it". Matthew 28:20 "…lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age". That the "close of the age" refers to the close of the Mosaic5 age is evidenced by Hebrews 9:26 and 1 Peter 1:20, an age which closed with the destruction of Jerusalem which commenced in AD 70 and was completed as prophesied in Micah 3:12 in AD 135.
In short, then, in John 9:4-5 the Lord Jesus clearly teaches that the Holy Spirit would be withdrawn at the end of the age, i.e. AD 70, approximately 38-40 years after it was given to the disciples at Pentecost6.
1 cf. footnote 1 at John 14:26 and the notes on the Comforter.
2 RV margin at Matt. 28:20.
3 Young’s. While aion is an elastic word the meaning here when compared with Matt. 28:20 is quite clear. Liddell and Scott have the primary meanings of aion as:
(1) a man’s lifetime (in which sense it is plainly used in John 13:8 and 1 Cor. 8:13, RV) or
(2) an era, which has both a beginning and an ending (e.g. Matt. 13:22). Both definitions fit and show that Christ is assuring the disciples that the Holy Spirit would remain with them as long as they lived.
4 The words of Mark 16:15-20 and Paul in Col. 1:23 indicate that a witness had been made unto all nations in their time.
5 This author regards the end of the Mosaic age and the end of the Apostolic Age as the same period of time.
6 TBSM, Vol. 7, P. 29.