The Holy Spirit and Prayer: The Communicative Aspects of the Holy Spirit


By: Brian Chilton

Last week, Jason Kline and I co-authored an article on the three positions on prayer: the pantheist view (that individuals can coerce and force God to speak); the deist view (the view that God never speaks); and the theist view (that God speaks to his people according to his will). When we consider God’s voice, it is imperative that we understand the working of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Triune Godhead, enjoined with God the Father (Yahweh) and God the Son (Jesus). So, what exactly does the Holy Spirit do as it pertains to prayer?

  1. The Holy Spirit Reveals the Word (Matt. 22:43; Acts 1:16; 4:25; 28:25; 1 Peter 1:11; 2 Peter 1:21). The Bible teaches that the Holy Spirit communicates with humanity by revealing God’s word. The writers of Scripture were inspired in ways that we are not today. That is to say, they received the infallible, inerrant word of God. Jesus noted, “How is it then that David, inspired by the Spirit, calls him ‘Lord’” (Matt. 22:43)?[1] Again in Acts 1:16, Peter said, “Brothers and sisters, it was necessary that the Scripture be fulfilled that the Holy Spirit through the mouth of David foretold about Judas” (Acts 1:16). Peter also writes in his letters that “They inquired into what time or what circumstances the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating when he testified in advance to the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow” (1 Peter 1:11) and that “No prophecy of Scripture comes from the prophet’s own interpretation, because no prophecy ever came by the will of man; instead, men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit” (2 Peter 1:21). While the prophets and writers of Scriptures were guided by the Holy Spirit to document the written word of God, the modern Christian is guided into understanding God’s revelation which is a gift and communicative aspect of the same Holy Spirit.

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