The issue on the nature of the Holy Spirit has always been debated and it looks like it would never end. Some people believe the Holy Spirit is merely the power of God — nothing more. On the other hand, some others believe the Holy Spirit is not just merely power but also a person — one of the persons of the Trinity. They claim the Holy Spirit is God. So what is the truth?
Well, that would really take some in depth study but in this blog, let me just focus on one point regarding the term “another Comforter” used by Jesus in the gospel of John.
Who is the Parakletos?
In both 1 John 2:1 and John 14:16, the word translated Comforter or Advocate comes from the Greek word, parakletos. Other Bible translations or versions render it also as Helper, Paraclete or Counselor. Let us just use the word Comforter for simplicity.
Both passages come from the same author, John. The context is quite clear in 1 John 2:1 that John is referring to the Lord Jesus Christ as the Comforter. This is not in doubt.
But on the other hand, it is also quite clear — very clear! — based on context in John 14:16-17, 26 and John 15:26 that the Comforter being referred to here by Jesus himself is the Holy Spirit and not himself. Jesus made a clear distinction between himself and the Holy Spirit. Who then is the Comforter?
Jesus is Our Comforter
Well, as I understand it, Jesus Christ is our Comforter. When Jesus said “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever” (KJV John 14:16-17, 26), I take it to mean that Jesus was referring to himself as the Comforter while he referred to the Holy Spirit as another Comforter. That is quite clear in this passage.
The Holy Spirit is Another Comforter
A Greek theologian, Dr. Kyriakos Stavrinides explained this very important word “another“ to the Worldwide Church of God ministers in the Philippines sometime in 1993-1994. The word “another” comes from the Greek word “allos” which really means “another” of the same quality and status — just like the Son of God, just like Jesus Christ, the Comforter.
In other words, Jesus is the Comforter and the Holy Spirit is ANOTHER Comforter of the same quality and status whom Jesus sent when he went back up to heaven. They are one with the Father. The Father and the Son are in us to comfort us through the Holy Spirit.
There is no doubt in my mind — the Holy Spirit is God!