Answers

By   •   February 20, 2006   •   Topics:

Q:

What is the difference between the Holy Ghost and the Holy Spirit? I've heard both terms all my life, but I've never asked my pastor or anyone else about it because I didn't want to appear stupid.


A:

Don’t be afraid to ask your pastor or someone else who is spiritually mature if you don’t understand something. God doesn’t want you to be ignorant of His truth, and they will want to help you. God has given people like this to us “to strengthen and encourage you in your faith” (1 Thessalonians 3:2).

The terms “Holy Spirit” and “Holy Ghost” mean exactly the same thing; both refer to the third Person of the Trinity (the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit). The phrase “Holy Ghost” is simply an older term that dates back several hundred years, and is found in some old versions of the English Bible (such as the King James Version). Because the word “ghost” has a different meaning today than it did several hundred years ago, modern translations of the Bible always use “Holy Spirit.”

Remember that the Holy Spirit is God Himself, and He is at work both in the world and in our hearts. When we come to Christ, the Holy Spirit comes to live within us; in fact, we can’t even come to Him until He convicts us of our sins and convinces us of our need to commit our lives to Christ. Jesus said, “When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment” (John 16:8).

But God has given His Spirit to us for another reason: to teach us and open our eyes to God’s truth as it is found in the Bible. Is this happening in your life?

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83 Comments

  1. Kyla says:

    Thank you for your service

  2. Rynee Hill says:

    My Uncle and I were discussing this opportunity subject and he told me the same account but me being a person that will look up and find out for myself I decided to look the question, and I am glad to say that God used my Uncle to witness the truth to me.

  3. Holdfast says:

    I have not read all the comments, but believe it is so important that people understand the language used in worship – a central tenet of the protestant church. Where misunderstanding might arise, ministers should clarify. In brief “Holy Ghost” and “Holy Spirit” have the same meaning. Both phrases will be found in the same services in the 1662 Book of Common Prayer. It is simply 16th century usage of the English language. In the same book “ghostly” is used with the meaning “spiritual”, eg “our ghostly enemy” or “ghostly counsel”.