Gift of the Holy Ghost

Gift of the Holy Ghost

The Gift of the Holy Ghost is a Christian term referenced in the Bible and in the Latter Day Saint movement.


The term The Gift of the Holy Ghost is a biblical reference from the message which was preached in Acts 2 by the Apostle Peter. [Acts 2:38-40.] This gift is a promise to those who (1) repent, and (2) are baptized in Jesus' Name. Acts 2:38,39 Further evidence of this "gift" being given is found in Acts 8:17 upon the occasion of Philip's preaching, also in Acts 10:44-46 when Peter preached to an Italian man and his family, and also in Acts 19:1-6 where Paul met up with some disciples of John the Baptist and told them of the Gift of the Holy Ghost. These men in Acts 19 had not heard of the Holy Ghost and consecuently were re-baptized and then filled with the Holy Ghost. The initial evidence of being filled with the Gift of the Holy Ghost is the act of "speaking in other tounges" or languages. Acts 2:4, Acts 10:46, Acts 19:6. In Acts 8, Philip preached to the city of Samaria and they were all baptized but had not received the Holy Ghost. Peter and John were sent for and when they came they laid hands upon the people and they received the Holy Ghost. In this instance it is not mentioned that they spoke in other tounges. However, a sorcerer by the name of Simon, upon seeing the spectacular event of people receiving the Holy Ghost, offered money so that he too might have that power. Simon had seen many healings and other miracles at the hands of Philip but had never offered money. Certainly something happened to them that was very impressive, possibly and likely they spoke in other tounges. [Acts 8:18-22]

Latter Day Saint movement

Gift of the Holy Ghost also refers to a doctrine of the Latter Day Saint movement, including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Although adding much to the biblical references, the doctrine teaches that the Holy Ghost itself is a divine personage and member of the Godhead. The "gift" of the Holy Ghost, however, is the privilege of having the Holy Ghost as one's constant companion. People who have not received the gift of the Holy Ghost are able to feel the influence of the Holy Ghost from time to time, and the inspiration of the Light of Christ (conscience) as they listen to spiritual promptings, but those who have been baptized and confirmed to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost will always feel His companionship, as long as they remain worthy of it.

The gift of the Holy Ghost is the fourth of the "first principles and ordinances of the Gospel." First being "Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost."

Latter-day Saints are told to seek out this gift and to invite the spirit into their daily lives and homes as a source of peace, joy, understanding, and strength to resist temptation. They are taught that by listening to this "still, small voice" or "Comforter" they may receive comfort, peace and divine inspiration (such as cautions, warnings, discernment or personal revelation). They are also taught that the Holy Ghost will sanctify their souls, making them not just worthy to be in the presence of God, but to become more like God. The Holy Ghost is also the source of many spiritual gifts. (See 1 Corinthians 12:8-12)

The baptism of water spoken by Jesus to Nicodemus was a literal baptism as practiced in the church. The baptism of fire is to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Only those who have the Melchizedek Priesthood are able to confirm newly baptized members such that they can receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, whereas Priests are only able to baptize.

A person who has received the gift of the Holy Ghost will lose the benefit of its promptings if they commit a major sin (until they repent), or if they exercise "compulsion upon the souls of the children of men, in any degree of unrighteousness" (Doctrine and Covenants 121:37).


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Holy Ghost — • The doctrine of the Catholic Church concerning the Holy Ghost forms an integral part of her teaching on the mystery of the Holy Trinity Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Holy Ghost     Holy Ghost …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus — The Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus is celebrated in the Roman Catholic liturgical calendar observance found in the liturgical calendar, at least at local level, since the end of the fifteenth century. The veneration of the Holy Name was extended …   Wikipedia

  • Baptism with the Holy Spirit — According to the New Testament, the Baptism in the Holy Spirit is an experience sent by Jesus Christ. As recorded in the Gospel of Luke, Jesus describes it as the Promise of the Father , through which believers in Jesus Christ receive power from… …   Wikipedia

  • Seven gifts of the Holy Spirit — The Seven gifts of the Holy Spirit are gifts which Anglicans, Roman Catholics, and Lutherans believe the Holy Spirit gives to people to further their sanctification and help complete and perfect the virtues of those who receive them.… …   Wikipedia

  • The Blessed Trinity —     The Blessed Trinity     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Blessed Trinity     This article is divided as follows:          I. Dogma of the Trinity;     II. Proof of the Doctrine from Scripture;     III. Proof of the Doctrine from Tradition;… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • The Rite of Constantinople (Byzantine Rite) —     The Rite of Constantinople     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Rite of Constantinople     (Also BYZANTINE RITE.)     The Liturgies, Divine Office, forms for the administration of sacraments and for various blessings, sacramentals, and exorcisms …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • The Church —     The Church     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► The Church     The term church (Anglo Saxon, cirice, circe; Modern German, Kirche; Sw., Kyrka) is the name employed in the Teutonic languages to render the Greek ekklesia (ecclesia), the term by which… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Gift of Miracles — • The gift of miracles is one of those mentioned by St. Paul in his First Epistle to the Corinthians (xii, 9, 10), among the extraordinary graces of the Holy Ghost Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Gift of Miracles     Gif …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • The Message of the Hour — The Message of the Hour, or simply The Message , is a term used by the followers of William M. Branham (1909 1965) an American faith healer and preacher of the mid Twentieth Century, to refer to his sermons, doctrines, and prophecies. The… …   Wikipedia

  • Gift of Tongues (Glossolalia) —     Gift of Tongues     † Catholic Encyclopedia ► Gift of Tongues     (Glossolaly, glossolalia).     A supernatural gift of the class gratiae gratis datae, designed to aid in the outer development of the primitive Church. The theological bearing… …   Catholic encyclopedia