Dove plague for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

My way led up a hill, and right at the foot I saw a boy on a bicycle. He was pedaling uphill against the wind, and evidently found it a tremendously hard work. Just as he was working most strenuously and doing his best painfully, there came a trolley car going in the same direction--up the hill. It was not going too fast for the boy to get behind it, and with one hand to lay hold of the bar at the back. Then you know what happened. He went up the hill like a bird.

Then it flashed upon me: Why, I am like that boy on the bicycle in my weariness and weakness. I am pedaling uphill against all kinds of opposition, and am almost worn out with the task. But here at hand is a great available power, the strength of the Lord Jesus Christ through His Holy Spirit, His Heavenly Dove.

"Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts." Zechariah 4:6.

Come, Holy Spirit, heavenly Dove
With all Thy quickening powers;
Kindle a flame of sacred love
In these cold hearts of ours.

O raise our thoughts from things below,
From vanities and toys!
Then shall we with fresh courage go,
To reach eternal joys.

Awake our souls to joyful songs;
Let pure devotions rise;
Till praise employs our thankful tongues,
And doubt forever dies.

Father, we would no longer live
At this poor, dying rate;
To Thee our thankful love we give,
For Thine to us is great.

Come, Holy Spirit, heavenly Dove,
With all Thy quickening powers;
Come, shed abroad a Savior's love,
And that shall kindle ours.

--Isaac Watts

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

What is the Heavenly Dove? It is the Spirit of God. In John 1:32, when John the Baptist baptized Jesus in the Jordan River, the Spirit of God descended from heaven in the form of a dove and abode on Jesus. Here's the account: "And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him."

Nearing the close of His earthly ministry and standing in the shadow of the cross, Jesus promised his disciples a most precious gift, the gift of the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, the Heavenly Dove. "I will pray the Father," He said, "and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him for he dwelleth with you and shall be in you." John 14:16,17.

The Saviour was pointing forward to the time when the Holy Spirit should come to do a mighty work as His representative. The evil that had been accumulating for centuries was to be resisted by the divine power of the Holy Spirit.

"In giving the Holy Spirit, it was impossible for God to give more. To this gift nothing could be added. By it all needs are supplied. The Holy Spirit is the vital presence of God, and if appreciated will call forth praise and thanksgiving, and will ever be springing up unto everlasting life. The restoration of the Spirit is the covenant of grace. Yet how few appreciate this great gift, so costly, yet so free to all who will accept it. When faith takes hold of the blessing, there comes rich spiritual good.

"We do not ask for enough of the good things God has promised. If we would reach up higher and expect more, our petitions would reveal the quickening influence that comes to every soul who asks with the full expectation of being heard and answered. The Lord is not glorified by the lame supplications which show that nothing is expected. He desires everyone who believes to approach the throne of grace with earnestness and assurance."--Signs of the Times, August 7, 1901.

"It is not because of any restriction on God's part that the riches of His grace do not flow to men. His gift is godlike. He gave with a liberality that men do not appreciate because they do not love to receive. If all were willing to receive, all would be filled with the Spirit. By resting content with small blessings, we disqualify ourselves for receiving the Spirit in ...unlimited fullness. We are too easily satisfied with a ripple on the surface when it is our privilege to expect the deep moving of the Spirit of God. Expecting little, we receive little." --Review and Herald, June 10, 1902.

"The measure of the Holy Spirit we receive will be proportioned to the measure of our desire and the faith exercised for it, and the use we shall make of the light and knowledge that shall be given to us. We shall be entrusted with the Holy Spirit according to our capacity to receive and our ability to impart it to others. Christ says, "Every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth." (Luke 11:10)." --Review and Herald, May 5, 1896.

"Everything that God could do has been done for the salvation of man. In one rich gift He poured out the treasures of heaven. He invites, He pleads, He urges; but He will not compel men to come unto Him. He waits for their cooperation. He waits for the consent of the will, that He may bestow upon the sinner the riches of His grace, reserved for him from the foundation of the world..." The Messenger, April 26, 1893.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

Here are some scriptures that tell us the purpose of the Heavenly Dove:

"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 16:13.

"...He shall testify of me." John 15:26.

"These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you." John 14:25,26.

"And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment." John 16:8.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

"A revival of true godliness among us is the greatest and most urgent of all our needs. To seek this should be our first work. There must be earnest effort to obtain the blessing of the Lord, not because God is not willing to bestow His blessing upon us, but because we are unprepared to receive it. Our heavenly Father is more willing to give His Holy Spirit to them that ask Him than are earthly parents to give good gifts to their children. But it is our work, by confession, humiliation, repentance, and earnest prayer, to fulfill the conditions upon which God has promised to grant us His blessing."--Review and Herald, March 22, 1887.

Come, Holy Spirit

Come as a wisdom to children,
Come as new sight to the blind,
Come, Lord, as strength to my weakness,
Take me: soul, body and mind.

Come, Holy Spirit, I need You,
Come, sweet Spirit, I pray;
Come in Your strength and Your power,
Come in Your own gentle way.

Come as a rest to the weary,
Come as a balm for the sore,
Come as a dew to my dryness
Fill me with joy evermore.

Come like a spring in the desert,
Come to the withered of soul;
O let Your sweet healing power
Touch me and make me whole.

Come, Holy Spirit, I need You,
Come, sweet Spirit, I pray;
Come in Your strength and Your power,
Come in Your own gentle way.

--Gloria & William Gaither

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

"What is the nature of the Heavenly Dove? The nature of the Holy Spirit is a mystery. Men cannot explain it because the Lord has not revealed it to them. Men having fanciful views may bring together passages of Scripture and put a human construction on them, but the acceptance of these views will not strengthen the church. Regarding such mysteries, which are too deep for human understanding, silence is golden." --Ye Shall Receive Power, page 11.

"The Holy Spirit is an agency that is as unseen as the wind. The wind is heard among the branches of the trees, rustling the leaves and flowers, yet it is invisible, and no man knows whence it comes or whither it goes. So with the work of the Holy Spirit upon the heart. The Spirit can no more be explained than can the movements of the wind... While the wind is itself invisible, it produces effects that are seen and felt. So, the work of the Spirit upon the soul will reveal itself in every act of Him who has felt its saving power." --The Desire of Ages, page 173.

It is the Holy Spirit, the Heavenly Dove, that convicts of sin. If the sinner responds to the quickening influence of the Spirit, he will be brought to repentance and aroused to the importance of obeying the divine requirements.

"The Spirit is given as a regenerating agency, to make effectual the salvation wrought by the death of our Redeemer. The Spirit is constantly seeking to draw the attention of men to the great offering that was made on the cross of Calvary, to unfold to the world the love of God, and to open to the convicted soul the precious things of the Scriptures." --The Acts of the Apostles, pages 51,52.

"Sin could be resisted and overcome only through the mighty agency of the third person of the Godhead, who would come with no modified energy, but in the fullness of divine power. It is the Spirit that makes effectual what has been wrought out by the world's Redeemer. It is by the Spirit that the heart is made pure. Through the Spirit the believer becomes a partaker of the divine nature. Christ has given His Spirit as a divine power to overcome all hereditary and cultivated tendencies to evil, and to impress His own character on His church." --Review and Herald, November 9, 1908.

"When the Spirit of God takes possession of the heart, He transform the life. Sinful thoughts are put away, evil deeds are renounced; love, humility, and peace take the place of anger, envy, and strife. Joy takes the place of sadness, and the countenance reflects the light of heaven. No one sees the hand that lifts the burden, or beholds the light descend from the courts above. The blessing comes when by faith the soul surrenders itself to God. Then that power which no human eye can see creates a new being in the image of God." The Desire of Ages, page 173.

"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance." Galatians 5:22,23.

Where the Spirit of the Lord is,
There is peace;
Where the Spirit of the Lord is,
There is love.
There is comfort in life's darkest hour,
There is help and power
In the Spirit,
In the Spirit of the Lord.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

The Holy Spirit is the Third Person of the Godhead, a distinct personality from the Father and the Son. But, how do we know that He is a Person and not just some cosmic energy or force?

The Holy Spirit speaks. Acts 13:2, Acts 8:29, Hebrews 3:7,8.

He dwells in us. Romans 8:9, 1 Corinthians 6:19.

He teaches. John 14:26.

He reproves. John 16:8.

He convicts of sin. John 16:9.

He testifies and bears witness. John 15:26.

He guides. John 16:13.

He intercedes for us. Romans 8:26.

He distributes gifts. 1 Corinthians 12:11.

He leads. Matthew 4:1.

He transports people. Acts 8:39.

He glorifies God. John 16:14.

He can be grieved. Ephesians 4:30.

He can be lied to. Acts 5:3.

He can be resisted. Acts 7:51.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

"But tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high." Luke 24:49.

"Before the disciples of Jesus were endued with power from on high, they were gathered together in one place to make humble supplication to God. And after ten days of heart searching and self-examination, the way was prepared for the Holy Spirit to enter the cleansed, consecrated soul temples. Every heart was filled with the Spirit, as though God desired to show His people that it was His prerogative to bless them with the choicest of heaven's blessings...Embued with the Spirit, they went forth to witness for the truth. And so God desires His servants to go forth today with the message He has given them. But till they receive the Holy Spirit, they cannot bear this message with power. Till they receive the Spirit, they cannot realize what God can do through them."--Review and Herald, June 10, 1902.

"It was after the disciples had come into perfect unity, when they were no longer striving for the highest place, that the Spirit was poured out. They were of one accord. All differences had been put away... The Spirit of God animated the entire congregation of believers.

"The disciples did not ask for a blessing for themselves. They were weighted with the burden of souls. The gospel was to be carried to the ends of the earth, and they claimed the endowment of power that Christ had promised. Then it was that the Holy Spirit was poured out, and thousands were converted in a day.

"So it may be now. Let Christians put away all dissension and give themselves to God for the saving of the lost. Let them ask in faith for the promised blessing, and it will come. The outpouring of the Spirit in the days of the apostles was 'the former rain,' and glorious was the result. But the latter rain will be more abundant. What is the promise to those living in these last days? 'Turn you to the strong hold, ye prisoners of hope: even today do I declare that I will render double unto thee.' (Zechariah 9:12). 'Ask ye of the Lord rain in the time of the latter rain; so the Lord shall make bright cloud, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.'" --Testimonies to the Church, volume 8, pages 20,21.

"As the divine endowment--the power of the Holy Spirit--was given to the disciples, so it will today be given to all who seek aright. This power alone is able to make us wise unto salvation, and to fit us for the courts above. Christ wants to give us a blessing that will make us holy. 'These things have I spoken unto you,' He says, 'that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full' (John 15:11). Joy in the Holy Spirit is health-giving, life-giving. In giving us His Spirit, God gives us Himself--a fountain of divine influences, to give health and life to the world." --Signs of the Times.

"Christ declares that the divine influence of the Spirit was to be with His followers unto the end... Learning, talents, eloquence, every natural or acquired endowment, may be possessed; but without the presence of the Spirit of God, no heart will be touched, no sinner won to Christ. When His disciples are connected with Christ, when the gifts of the Spirit are theirs, even the poorest and most ignorant of them will have a power that will tell upon hearts. God makes them the channel for the outworking of the highest influence in the universe." --Signs of the Times, March 15, 1910.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

What about spiritual gifts and their purpose in the body of Christ? Here are some texts that answer this question:

1 Corinthians 12:1 - "Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant."

Ephesians 4:11 - "And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers."

1 Corinthians 12:28 - "And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues."

The purpose of spiritual gifts in the church is found in Ephesians 4:12-15: "For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:...that we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ."

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit, Heavenly Dove

Is the Trinity biblical? While the Bible does not have the word Trinity in it, the concept of a ONE GOD--a Godhead--but three distinct personalities is clearly taught. When a person renounces the world and accepts Christ as his personal Saviour, he is baptized into the church in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

In Colossians 2:2 (King James Version) we read these words: "That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgment of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ." There are three distinct persons mentioned here. Notice that the Holy Spirit was referred to only as God. There are three distinct persons but ONE in nature, character, love, and power. Other translations render the mystery of God as Christ's Himself.

When I was studying the concept of the Trinity to see if it is biblical, the following texts solidified in my mind that it is in fact biblical:

Acts 5:30 - "The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree." This text specifically states that the Father raised up Jesus from the grave.

John 2:19 - "Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." Here, Jesus refers to His death; in three days He (Jesus) will raise Himself up.

Romans 8:11 - "But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you." Here, the Holy Spirit (He's the one that dwells in us) raised up Jesus. So, let me ask you a question: Who raised up Jesus? You cannot help but see the oneness of the three distinct personalities of the Godhead.

Jesus was conceived of the Holy Ghost. Matthew 1:18, 20. Yet, Jesus is the Son of God, the Father.

While we know that the nature of the Godhead is a mystery, too deep for human understanding, we know what has been revealed to us in the Word of God--that, though ONE, they are three distinct personalities. One in the sense that they are ONE in nature, character, love and power.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

What about the blasphemy against the Holy Spirit--a grievous sin that cannot be forgiven by God? Matthew 12:31 says "Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men."

The sin of blasphemy against the Holy Ghost is the persistent refusal to respond to the Spirit's invitation to repent. It is not any sudden word or deed; it is the firm, determined resistance of truth and evidence over a period of time.

"It is not that God sends out a decree that man shall not be saved. He does not throw a darkness before the eyes which cannot be penetrated. But man at first resists a motion of the Spirit of God, and, having once resisted, it is less difficult to do so the second time, less the third, and far less the fourth. Then comes the harvest to be reaped from the seed of unbelief and resistance. Oh what a harvest of sinful indulgences is preparing for the sickle!

"On the other hand, every ray of light cherished will yield a harvest of light. Temptation once resisted will give power to more firmly resist the second time; every new victory gained over self will smooth the way for higher and nobler triumphs. Every victory is a seed sown to eternal life.

"God destroys no one. The sinner destroys himself by his own impenitence.

"No one need look upon the sin against the Holy Ghost as something mysterious and indefinable. The sin against the Holy Ghost is the sin of persistent refusal to respond to the invitation to repent." --Faith I Live By, page 58.4 through 58.8.

"To the person who is on the verge of committing the unpardonable sin, "the conscience becomes less and less impressible. The voice of God seems to become more and more distant, and the wrongdoer is left to his own infatuation. In stubbornness he resists every appeal, despises all counsel and advice, and turns from every provision made for his salvation, and the voice of the messenger of God makes no impression upon his mind. The Spirit of God no longer exerts a restraining power over him, and the sentence is passed, "He is joined to idols, let him alone." (Hosea 4:17). --Review and Herald, June 29, 1897.

In this discourse, we've learned that the nature of the Holy Spirit of God, the Heavenly Dove, is a mystery too deep for human understanding. The Holy Spirit, Christ's representative in the earth, is the precious gift that Jesus promised his disciples down through the ages, to the end of time. It is the Holy Spirit who teaches, guides, convicts, reproves, intercedes, and empowers the followers of Christ to proclaim the Gospel to the world. It is the Holy Spirit who enables them to become partakers of the divine nature. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit produces fruits in the lives of the believers enabling them to reflect fully the character of their Lord.

The Holy Spirit distributes gifts for the purpose of perfecting the saints, carrying forward the work of the ministry, and edifying the Church. The Holy Spirit is the Third Person of the Godhead. We learn that the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, the unpardonable sin, is the persistent refusal to respond to the Spirit's invitation to repent. The conscience becomes less and less impressible, and the voice of God seems to become more and more distant until finally the sentence is passed that he is joined to his idols, let him alone.

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

Holy Spirit, Light Divine

Holy Spirit, light divine,
Shine upon this heart of mine,
Chase the shades of night away,
Turn my darkness into day.

Holy Spirit, power divine,
Cleanse this guilty heart of mine;
Long has sin, without control,
Held dominion o'er my soul.

Holy Ghost, with joy divine,
Cheer this saddened heart of mine,
Bid my many woes depart,
Heal my wounded, bleeding heart.

Holy Spirit, all divine,
Dwell within this heart of mine,
Cast down every idol throne,
Reign supreme, and reign alone.

--Andrew Reed

Dove graphic for Holy Spirit Heavenly Dove

There a sweet, sweet Spirit in this place,
And I know that it's the Spirit of the Lord;
There are sweet expressions on each face,
And I know they feel the presence of the Lord.

Sweet Holy Spirit, Sweet heavenly Dove,
Stay right here with us,
Filling us with Your love;
And for these blessings
We lift our hearts in praise;
Without a doubt we'll know
that we have been revived,
When we shall leave this place.

There are blessings you cannot receive
'Til you know Him in His fullness and believe;
You're the one to profit when you say,
"I am going to walk with Jesus all the way."

If you say He saved you from your sin,
Now you're weak, you're bound and cannot enter in;
You can make it right if you will yield--
You'll enjoy the Holy Spirit that we feel.

Sweet Holy Spirit, Sweet heavenly Dove,
Stay right here with us,
Filling us with Your love;
And for these blessings
We lift our hearts in praise;
Without a doubt we'll know
that we have been revived,
When we shall leave this place.

--Doris Akers

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