Who is the Holy Spirit according to Ellen White?

9 min


The doctrine of the trinity teaches that the Holy Spirit is a third being, and yet this teaching could never have come from the early Church as it is a manmade doctrine that originated 348 years after the cross. Ellen White and the pioneers give the real Biblical truth in unmistakable words which is that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God and it is also the Spirit of Christ, and so she states that they are “one in Spirit.” (Caps and highlighting are added for emphasis as per the example below)

They were two, yet little short of being identical; two in individuality, yet ONE IN SPIRIT, and heart, and character.” — (Ellen G. White, Youth’s Instructor, December 16, 1897)

She reveals why the Father and Son are one in Spirit as she explains that God gave “all things” to His Son which includes not only His self-existent life as she and Scripture states, but also His Spirit. “For as the Father has life in himself; so has he given to the Son to have life in himself.John 5:26

All things Christ received from God, but He took to give.” — (Ellen G. White, Desire of Ages, p. 21)

The Father gave his Spirit without measure to his Son, and we also may partake of its fulness.” — (Ellen G. White, Review and Herald, November 5, 1908)

The Holy Spirit is therefore not another being but the very presence of God Himself coming to us through His Son.

In giving us HIS Spirit, God gives us HIMSELF, making Himself a fountain of divine influences, to give health and life to the world.” — (Ellen G. White, Testimonies Volume 7, p. 273, 1902)

So as Ellen White said, the Spirit of God comes to us through His only begotten Son and why the Holy Spirit can rightfully be called the Spirit of Christ.

The Holy Spirit, which proceeds from the only begotten Son of God,” — (Ellen G. White, Review and Herald, April 5, 1906)

Other than the Father and Son, there is nothing more important than knowing who the Holy Spirit is. The pioneers and Ellen White all understood this extremely important point of doctrine very well and with good reason. Note the following.

After the passing of the time in 1844 we searched for the truth as for hidden treasure. I met with the brethren, and we studied and prayed earnestly. Often we remained together until late at night, and sometimes through the entire night, praying for light and studying the Word. Again and again these brethren came together to study the Bible, in order that they might know its meaning, and be prepared to teach it with power. When they came to the point in their study where they said, “We can do nothing more,” the Spirit of the Lord would come upon me. I would be taken off in vision, and a clear explanation of the passages WE had been studying would be given me, with instruction as to how we were to labor and teach effectively. Thus light was given that helped US to understand the scriptures in regard to Christ, his mission, and his priesthood.” — (Ellen G. White, Review and Herald, May 25, 1905)

And so the pioneers knew what was revealed to Ellen White and state it in even clearer words than she used.

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God; it is also the Spirit of Christ. It is that divine, mysterious emanation through which they carry forward their great and infinite work.” — (Uriah Smith, GC Bulletin, March 18, 1891, pp. 146, 147)

Finally, we know the Divine unity of the Father and the Son from the fact that both have the same Spirit. Paul, after saying that they that are in the flesh cannot please God, continues: “But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.” Rom. 8:9. Here we find that the Holy Spirit is both the Spirit of God and the Spirit of Christ.” — (E.J. Waggoner, Christ and His Righteousness, p. 23, 1890)

The terms “Holy Ghost”, are a harsh and repulsive translation. It should be “Holy Spirit” (hagion pneuma) in every instance.This Spirit is the Spirit of God, and the Spirit of Christ; the Spirit being the same whether it is spoken of as pertaining to God or Christ. But respecting this Spirit, the Bible uses expressions which cannot be harmonized with the idea that it is a person like the Father and the Son. Rather it is shown to be a divine influence from them both, the medium which represents their presence and by which they have knowledge and power through all the universe, when not personally present.” — (Uriah Smith, Review and Herald, October 28, 1890)

Paul says in Ephesians 4:4 that there is “one Spirit.” And yet the Bible speaks about the “Spirit of God” and the “Spirit of Christ”, which involves two Divine beings. If the Father has a Holy Spirit, the Son must too. So how then is there only one Spirit? Ellen White and the pioneers understood this very well as you have just seen and having the Spirit of Prophecy to guide them sure helped! The answer is something the majority miss because most have been indoctrinated with the Catholic idea that the Holy Spirit is another being rather than God’s own Spirit.

The Holy Spirit is the mind, power, character and personal presence of the very life of God that the Father sends through His Son to us. Or to put it another way to make sure this is clear. The Holy Spirit is the presence and power of the Father manifested through Jesus Christ His begotten son. This is not a separate person of the Godhead who is being sent, it is the very life of God coming to us through His Son.

Everything Christ received He inherited from His Father including His very own life which is self-existent as it came from the Father. “For as the Father has life in himself; so has he given to the Son to have life in himself.John 5:26

But not only His life but Christ also received of His Fathers Spirit. Thus the Father and Son are one in Spirit, and that one Spirit proceeds from the Father and comes to us through His Son. This is why Paul equates the “Spirit of God” with the “Spirit of Christ” as it is the same one Spirit of God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ. And so we find that the Holy Spirit is the same Spirit whether it is spoken of as pertaining to God or Christ. “But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.Romans 8:9

Referring to the Holy Spirit, Paul says that Christ is that Spirit. “Now the Lord [Jesus] is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.2 Corinthians 3:17

And further, while Paul wrote in Ephesians 4:4 that there is only one Spirit, he again tells us in Galatians 4:6 that this Spirit is the Spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ, which He received from His Father. So when you receive the Spirit of God, you receive the Spirit of His Son into your heart also. The Father did not send another individual. He sent the Spirit of His Son. “God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.Galatians 4:6

Thus through their Holy Spirit both the Father and Son come and make their abode in you. “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.John 14:23

By the Spirit the Father and the Son will come and make their abode with you. [John 14:23 quoted]” — (Ellen G. White, The Bible Echo, January 15, 1893)

And being one in Spirit gives us access to the Father through Christ our mediator. “For through him [Christ] we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.Ephesians 2:18

So it is by the Holy Spirit that Christ lives in us. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me:Galatians 2:20

The Spirit of Christ is our Comforter (parakletos) which also means “helper” and is translated as such in the NKJV, “For I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance.Philippians 1:19

Christ had also spoken through all the prophets. “Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.1 Peter 1:11

Christ has always partaken of the Spirit of God since He was begotten of the Father before anything they created. When Jesus was incarnated on earth 2000 years ago, He was full of that same Holy Spirit of God from His conception, and throughout His earthy sojourn as the Son of Man. After His resurrection and ascension to Heaven, He sent “another comforter” to earth to empower His people till the end of time, which was Himself in Spirit form. Only the Father and the Son can be present outside of their bodies throughout the Universe. Their Holy Spirit is the way in which they are omnipresent while also being physically present in the Heavenly Sanctuary as we speak. This is where the nascent Catholics made their mistakes when coming up with the incomprehensible doctrine of the trinity versus the plain word of God. In creating the trinity they philosophized when they should have left it alone as it is totally un-Scriptural.

And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 46 Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.1 Corinthians 15:45-47

Here the Apostle Paul is talking about the two Adams. The first Adam was the first created man on earth who sinned by eating the forbidden fruit. The second (last) Adam is Christ who came to redeem us. Notice that Paul says that this One was made “a quickening spirit.” This is the other important thing about Christ. Not just His earthly human life, but also what happened after. In verse 46 Paul clarifies that the natural comes first and then the spiritual. This is exactly what happened with Jesus. He came to earth first as a man, ministered, ascended to Heaven, and then at Pentecost He came back in Spirit with mighty power! Both times was to instruct and sanctify His people, and that is the same purpose today. So the Holy Spirit of God the Father is now also the Spirit of Christ which point Paul confirms in verse 47. So “the Lord from Heaven” in verse 47 is the “quickening Spirit” of verse 45. It cannot be any clearer. The Spirit of God and of Christ is what Ellen White calls the “third person of the Godhead” as a spiritual manifestation and hence another form. It is different to the way we think of the word “person” when applied to human beings which is a spirit in a body.

This is because these divine beings can do something we cannot. They can leave their bodies in one place (the Heavenly Sanctuary), and also be omnipresent in every place throughout the universe at the same time by their Holy Spirit. In this way they can also enter the hearts of a repentant believer. The teachings of the Catholic trinity (three persons in one god) are now rampant in most Churches which destroys this wonderful truth of who the Holy Spirit really is by the introduction of a totally different third being which does not actually exist! And as if that were not bad enough, Satan receives the unwitting worship of millions upon millions of people through this serious deception that he has inspired man to create.

So the Holy Spirit is the very life of God coming from the Father and shared by the Son. It is the personal presence of the Father and the Son given to us. Those who partake of this divine presence and power within, the life of God, and allow Him to transform their characters into the likeness of His Son will someday personally meet this wondrous God of love.

Most do not understand that the Spirit of Christ can function independently of Himself and so it is like His Spirit is “another” person, though not a literal person. It is His Spirit. His Spirit is not a literal person any more than our spirit is a literal person. However, His Spirit can do something ours can’t. His Spirit can function independently of Himself as if it is “another” person while our spirit cannot. Most also miss that the Holy Spirit is the “one” Spirit of the Father and Son. This is how we have access to the Father through Christ who is the “one” mediator between God and man. As Paul wrote, “For through him [Christ] we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.Ephesians 2:18. This is why Ellen White so frequently calls the Holy Spirit the Spirit of Christ even though it is also the Spirit of His Father. As Christ said, “lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.Matthew 28:20. How is Christ with us? Through His Holy Spirit.

If the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ and not a third being then the Spirit of Prophecy will confirm every one these points.

  1. The Holy Spirit is the Comforter so therefore Ellen White must confirm that the Comforter is the Spirit of Christ
  2. Ellen White would have to say that the Spirit of truth which is also the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ
  3. Christ breathed the Holy Spirit on His disciples so Ellen White must confirm that this was Christ’s Spirit
  4. Ellen White would have to say that the Holy Spirit given at Pentecost is also the Spirit of Christ
  5. Ellen White calls the Holy Spirit a person so she must call the Spirit of Christ a person
  6. Ellen White called the Holy Spirit the third person so she must confirm that the third person is the Spirit of Christ
  7. Ellen White said heavenly trio so she must reveal that the third person in the heavenly trio is the Spirit of Christ
  8. Ellen White said the Holy Spirit represents Christ so she must say it is His own Spirit that represents Him
  9. Christ said He will send the Holy Spirit so Ellen White must reveal that Christ sends His own Spirit
  10. She would have to reveal that the third highest being in Heaven is a being that is not the Holy Spirit
  11. Ellen White said three great powers, so she would have to reveal that the Spirit of Christ is a divine power
  12. If the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ, then she should say so in unmistakable words many times
  13. Ellen White calls the Holy Spirit an agency so she must say this agency is Jesus Christ by His Spirit
  14. If the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Christ then Ellen White must reveal there are only two beings in the Godhead
  15. Ellen White must say there is only one mediator between God and man and not two as the trinity doctrine claims

If all these points can be proven than there can be no doubt that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God coming through His Son Jesus Christ and hence the Holy Spirit can be called the Spirit of Christ. As Ellen White said, “The Holy Spirit, which proceeds from the only begotten Son of God, binds the human agent, body, soul, and spirit, to the perfect, divine-human nature of Christ.” — (Ellen G. White, Review and Herald, April 5, 1906)

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