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Does the Holy Spirit only interact with christians?

Discussion in 'Paterology, Christology & Pneumatology' started by lutherangerman, Apr 26, 2010.

  1. lutherangerman

    lutherangerman Senior Member

    Recently I felt really down and tired of harsh reality, so I sat down and asked the Holy Spirit to comfort me. Then suddenly my yahoo messenger popped up and a stranger came on whom I've never had before. We talked a bit and it was really nice. He came from India and is an atheist but he believes in tolerance. This was something I had been thinking of before, how a christian should act with atheists and people of other religions.

    So I wanted to ask, does the Holy Spirit also interact with other people somehow? Causing good things to happen, inspiring us, giving us happiness? Paul writes in Acts that God has put joy in the hearts of those who did not know Him yet. Could it be that this was a work of the Holy Spirit?

    I am baptized since 2 years now, but I also had a pretty happy childhood and youth when I was still an atheist. I've been trying to believe in God's goodness and came to think that God also gave me the happiness that I sometimes had even when I was still an atheist. It would mean much to me that some of my treasured memories of the time when I was still an atheist, also had God in them.

    I mean it's not like christians and those outside are at odds and each other's enemies necessarily. After all, we were outside once too.
  2. Christos Anesti

    Christos Anesti Junior Member

    Eastern Orthodox
    All good comes from God. My Priest always says that if a person performs an act of love and kindess then that is the Holy Spirit working in their life. It doesn't matter what religion they hold to. Without the Holy Spirit no one would be able to become Christian in the first place too so He must interact with non-Christians. Of course He is always seeking to bring people to the fullness of the truth. Not everyone is at that point though and God meets us wherever we are at. Thats my 2cents for whatever it is worth.
  3. Terral

    Terral Senior Member

    Hi Lutheran:

    No. The Holy Spirit is the "Helper" from John 16:7. Let us read from that chapter to see some of the Helper's duties (Christ is speaking):

    The Holy spirit convicts the world concerning 'sin' and concerning 'righteousness' and concerning 'judgment' and these are just some of the duties for the Holy Spirit among 'unbelievers' who "do not believe in Me." The Holy Spirit is also the Intercessor for every believer, as we do not know how to pray; as it is written:

    The Holy Spirit is nearer to every believer than your own breath and through Him our requests are made known to God through our Lord Jesus Christ making intercession for all the saints (Romans 8:34),

    In Christ Jesus,

  4. janwoG

    janwoG My heart leads me to Messianic Judaism

    In studying the life of mystics of Christianity and those in Judaism, Islam, and Buddhism, I was stricken how close they seem to come. All used the same pathway, renouncing to self-centeredness, and emptying their selves from worldly desires, developing a self of virtues and wisdom, practicing loving kindness towards others, thus developing their mind to enlightenment, like if the Holy Spirit led them on the pathway of Christ. Therefore, they may share the state of Jesus, as sons of God and may be saved. All prophets of God walked on this way. Why that might still happen after the first coming of Christ? Because of the misbehavior of many “Christians”, their divisions and their hate of one another, in opposition of the teaching of Jesus, made the message of Christ by these Christians not credible. The immense grace of God may lead these mystics outside formal Christianity into the way of Jesus. But also in this case, the role of the Son of God is central, though implicitly but not explicitly. These mystics may be regarded as implicit Christians. I will just mention a prayer of one of the highest mystical women in Islam, Rabia al Adawiyya, living in Bagdad in the 8th century: Oh God! If I worship You in fear of the hell, burn me in hell, and if I worship You in hope of paradise, exclude me from paradise, but if I worship You for Your own sake, withhold not Your everlasting beauty. This is an exemple of total surrender to God. Without the Holy Spirit, I doubt such an attitude would be possible.
  5. Jpark

    Jpark Well-Known Member

    Never mind.
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  6. Gracia Singh

    Gracia Singh Newbie

    well, the indwelling of and personal guidance from the Holy Spirit as pretains to following and pleasing God and understanding Scripture is something given only to Christians, through faith in God's Son.

    but God does certainly guide, bless, inspire, encourage, and use non-Christians in personal and significant ways. look at how He has used people like Mahatma Gandhi, Viktor Frankl, and many others who were not Christian, but whose actions, words, and writings have changed the world for the better, and inspired many.
  7. Christos Anesti

    Christos Anesti Junior Member

    Eastern Orthodox
    I've always loved that saying.
  8. KVHiker

    KVHiker Newbie

    1 Corinthians 2:13

    Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
  9. Janet842

    Janet842 Member

    Lutherangerman, the Holy Spirit indwells only Christians, however God is involved in everyone's lives even before their births:

    “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you." Jeremiah 1:5

    "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. Psalm 139:13

    And for His involvement in the lives of all people, whether saved or not:

    "He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous." Matthew 5:45

    Enjoy your treasured childhood memories knowing that God has always been with you.
  10. BrendanMark

    BrendanMark Member

    Just a personal opinion, but I think Christians are the only ones who recognize the Holy Spirit as Holy Spirit (being the only faith of the Trinity), yet the Spirit works through His mysterious ways in all cultures around the world, even if they do not recognize it as the work of the Spirit. He is the Spirit that graces all the cosmos and all humanity, even if the cosmos and humanity do not acknowledge it or even realize it.

    God works through even the ungodly, however oblivious they may be and however passionately they deny it. God is all powerful - He can even work through the Devil.

    Just my opinion, but I can search around for various texts and the like to support the view.
  11. Londongal

    Londongal Newbie

    i too think that only xtians wd RECOGNIZE the holy spirit at work.
    however,regarding the ...good things while i was an atheist....it says in scripture that God makes the rain /sun etc to fall on the godly and ungodly.
    ie he extends common grace to ALL of his creation.but there is also his SAVING grace and the indwelling of the holy spirit,thats reserved if u will,for those that beleive in Jesus.