A Christian Teen’s Guide to the Holy Spirit
Uncovering vital information about the most mysterious member of the Trinity.
In today’s Christian Teen’s Guide, we’re going to take a close look at the Holy Spirit. As we do, we'll explore who he is, what he does, and why that matters for you.
What the Bible says about the Holy Spirit
The Holy Spirit is part of the Trinity
As Ronnie Campbell explains in this article:
“The word “Trinity” means “three-in-one” or “three-in-unity”. So, when Christians speak of the Trinity, they mean that only ONE God exists but that this God exists as a unity of THREE persons, consisting of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
While the word “Trinity” never appears in the Bible, we do see the concept there. The Bible often speaks of God as “one”, yet it also speaks of God as “three”.
The Holy Spirit works alongside God the Father and God the Son to help us follow God.
The Holy Spirit is all about Jesus
“This is the fundamental verse in the Bible that will help you understand the Holy Spirit (it’s Jesus speaking):
He will glorify me. (John 16:14)
Let me explain...
TIME magazine had a front cover about teenagers today. They titled them, ‘The me, me, me generation: Millennials are lazy, entitled narcissists’. You can decide for yourself how fair it is, but you could never give that title to the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is all about Jesus. His purpose is a person.
The Son of God has the Spirit of God powerfully working in him to achieve the plan of God the Father. The Father’s plan is to give his only Son to die, so that we might be cleansed by the Spirit. It’s beautiful to see such selfless actions and love within the Trinity. They all work for the good and glory of the other, never for themselves.
As we focus on the Spirit, he is all about Jesus all of the time in all he does. The Spirit will glorify Jesus.
This is why the Holy Spirit is known as the Spirit of God and the Spirit of Christ in the same verse. The Holy Spirit is about Jesus with intensity.
The Spirit is often known as the ‘shy member of the Trinity’, and he does not see that as a bad thing, because he wants no attention of his own.
He’s like the floodlights at a large sporting event or the theatre. The point of the lights is so we can see the action in front of us. We aren’t to look around and watch the lights and say ‘Oh my, what a bright light’. If we do that, the lights have failed in their mission, and we failed in our understanding. The lights mean we can see the action, so keep looking at the action. Every time we look at Jesus, the Holy Spirit is doing his work. If we talk about Jesus, we’re doing a Holy Spirit thing.”
The Holy Spirit is given to all Christians
Before his death and resurrection, Jesus promised that he would give something to the disciples from God (Luke 24:49). And at Pentecost (Acts 2), the Holy Spirit is given to the first Christians.
Since then, all people who turn to God receive the Holy Spirit to help us follow God.
The Holy Spirit helps us follow God
The Holy Spirit helps us to live a life that honours God by producing “fruit in us”. Ronnie Campbell explains:
“In the New Testament letter to the church at Galatia, Paul, one of Jesus’ followers, uses a farming metaphor—the fruit of the Spirit—to talk about the way that the Holy Spirit works in us. Paul tells the Galatians that they are to “walk by the Spirit” (Gal 5:16, 25 ESV). Here’s why.
When believers walk by the Spirit, says Paul, they no longer give into those desires that are contrary to God’s will (Gal 5:16, ESV). Paul then contrasts the works of the flesh (Gal 5:20-21)—those things that are opposed to God’s will—with the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22-24)—those things that are God’s will for us.
God wants believers to live lives that are pure, holy, and completely devoted to Him. The way that we do this is through incorporating the fruit of the Spirit into our lives.”
The Holy Spirit is a mark of our salvation
Ephesians 1:13-14 explains another really important purpose of the Holy Spirit:
And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
When we start following Jesus, the Holy Spirit marks us as one of God’s chosen people.
Let’s get practical
How can I get the Holy Spirit to help me in my walk with God?
Since you have the Spirit, you probably want to make use of this gift!
Well the good news is, the Spirit is already at work within you. He is the one that callde you to God in the first place, and he is the one that is with you every day, helping you to grow more like Christ and deepen your trust in him.
If you want God to help you more, all you need to do is ask.
And some more good news: even if you’re struggling to find the words to say, remember that the Spirit in you is in a trinitarian relationship with God the Father and God the Son, and speaks to God on your behalf.
Questions to think about
- What facts do you know about the Holy Spirit? Where did you learn these?
- How often does your church teach about the Holy Spirit? Do you think it’s too much, not enough, or just right?
- How would you explain the Holy Spirit to a friend or family member who asked?
- Pray that God would help you follow him more, with the help of the Spirit