Q: #260. Did the Holy Spirit live in Jesus?
By: Steve Shirley
A: The Bible is not 100% clear on this, but I believe the Holy Spirit did live in Jesus, just as He lives in all Christians today. There are a number of verses that seem to point to this, but even if the Holy Spirit did not permanently dwell in Jesus while He lived on Earth, there is no question that Jesus did numerous (maybe all) things through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Several prophetic verses in Isaiah, speaking of Jesus, point to the role of the Holy Spirit in Jesus' life.
(Isa 11:2)(NASB) The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him, The spirit of wisdom and understanding, The spirit of counsel and strength, The spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord.
(Isa 42:1)(NASB) Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations.
(Isa 61:1)(NASB) The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, Because the Lord has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners; (Jesus repeated this verse in Lk 4:21 and said it referred to Him.)
Is the Holy Spirit "resting on" or "being upon" Jesus the same as "living in" Jesus? Not necessarily, but when you look up the Hebrew word for "rest" (nuwach) used in these verses, Strong's gives this as one definition, ""To rest" sometimes indicates a complete envelopment and thus permeation, as in the spirit of Elijah "resting" on Elisha (2 Kin 2:15)." This certainly fits with other verses about Jesus.
At His Baptism: (Lk 3:22)(NASB) and the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form like a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, "You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased." (Also see: Mt 3:16-17, Mk 1:10-11)
(Jn 1:32-33)(NASB) John testified saying, "I have seen the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and He remained upon Him. (33) I did not recognize Him, but He who sent me to baptize in water said to me, 'He upon whom you see the Spirit descending and remaining upon Him, this is the One who baptizes in the Holy Spirit.'
BUT, look at these two verses:
(Lk 4:1) Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led around by the Spirit in the wilderness
(Mk 5:30) And Jesus immediately knowing in himself that virtue (power) had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?
Doesn't being "full of the Spirit" or having "virtue (power) gone OUT of Him" sound like the Spirit was IN Him?
Even if one says "no," we can see clearly over and over that Jesus did depend on the "power" of the Holy Spirit.
(Acts 10:38)(NASB) You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.
(Lk 4:14) And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about.
(Lk 5:17) And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.
(Mt 12:28) But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.
While Jesus was on Earth, He was fully God AND fully man. However, He voluntarily "veiled" some of His divine attributes (Phil 2:5-8)(2 Cor 8:9)(John 17:4-5). This being the case, it makes perfect sense that He would have depended on the power of the Holy Spirit throughout His ministry on Earth, just as is indicated above. We are told in (Lk 1:15) that John The Baptist was "filled with the Holy Spirit while yet in his mother's womb." If he was filled, isn't it reasonable to believe that Jesus was filled as well during His whole life (some believe it wasn't until His baptism)?
So, yes, I do believe the Holy Spirit lived in Jesus, and I also believe that He depended on the power of the Holy Spirit throughout His life, just Christians are to do today. However, (Jn 3:34) seems to indicate He had a greater measure of the Holy Spirit than we will ever have.