The Arian controversy of the fourth century compelled the Fathers to state their beliefs with greater clarity than before. Among the important writings that appeared at that time is the Athanasian Creed. Who composed it matters little to us now. It was written as an attempt to state in as few words as possible what the Bible teaches about the nature of God; and this it has done with a comprehensiveness and precision hardly matched anywhere in the literature of the world. Here are a few quotations bearing on the deity of the Holy Spirit:
“There is one Person of the Father, another of the Son: and another of the Holy Ghost.”
“But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one: the Glory equal, the Majesty co-eternal.”
“And in this Trinity none is afore, or after other: none is greater, or less than another; But the whole three Persons are co-eternal together: and co-equal.”
“So that in all things, as is aforesaid: the Unity in Trinity, and Trinity in Uhity is to be worshiped.”
In her sacred hymnody the Church has freely acknowledged the Godhead of the Spirit and in its inspired song it has worshiped Him with joyous abandon. Some of our hymns to the Spirit have become so familiar that we tend to miss their true meaning by the very circumstance of their familiarity. Such a hymn is the wondrous “Holy Ghost, with Light Divine”; another is the more recent “Breathe on Me, Breath of God”; and there are many others. They have been sung so often by persons who have had no experiential knowledge of their content, that for the most of us they have become almost meaningless.
Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? 1 Corinthians 3:16
Some of our hymns to the Spirit have become so familiar that we tend to miss their true meaning by the very circumstance of their familiarity.
Breathe on us, Breathe of God, invade our beings, make us new!