Deity of the Holy Spirit: Omniscience

Scripture attributes to God certain divine attributes which are not attributes to any created beings, such as omniscience, omnipresence, omnipotence, and eternality. We then see these divine attributes attributed to the Holy Spirit himself in such a manner that identifies the Holy Spirit with the divine being of Yahweh.

OMNISCIENCE

Isaiah 40:13 (CSB) — 13 Who has directed the Spirit of the Lord, or who gave him counsel?

1 Corinthians 2:10–12 (CSB) — 10 Now God has revealed these things to us by the Spirit, since the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. 11 For who knows a person’s thoughts except his spirit within him? In the same way, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who comes from God, so that we may understand what has been freely given to us by God.

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Isaiah’s prophecy is part of a revelation that pertains to the incomparable nature of God (Isaiah 40:12-31). These verses are a development of the proclamation in verse 9: “Here is your God!” They also expound more fully the description of an all-powerful yet tender Shepherd-King in verses 10–11, demonstrating that the incomparable majesty of God set forth in verses 12–26 leads into an assurance that he will give strength to his frail people even in their hour of need.

We discover that the Spirit of the Lord lacks no knowledge and has no need of counsel by which his knowledge, wisdom, or understanding might be improved outside of himself. This cannot be said of any created being, which are by definition finite. Only the divine being of Yahweh himself can be said to be infinite in any of his characteristics, and only an infinite and all knowing being can be beyond the counsel of any other being.

In Paul’s letter to the Corinthian Christians we discover both the personhood and omniscience of the Holy Spirit when Paul writes that the infinite and unlimited knowledge of God is revealed to us by the Holy Spirit, who searches and knows even the depths of God’s knowledge. This conveys the personhood of the Holy Spirit through the relational communion that exists between the Father and the Holy Spirit. It doesn’t simply say that God “conveys knowledge through the Spirit”, as if the Spirit were some kind of force, but that the Spirit searches the depths of God. He is inquisitive. He possesses understanding. He possesses initiative.

We discover one of the greatest gifts given to Christians in the context of this description: Christians receive “the Spirit who comes from God, so that we may understand what has been freely given to us by God.” How wonderful that we are not estranged from our heavenly Father, but that we may understand his revelation because of the promised Spirit of the covenant that we have received from him in Christ!

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