What was the Holy Spirit’s Role in an Old Testament Believer’s Life?

Ronald Youngblood, in his commentary on I Samuel 16:13 (referring to Daniel Block’s article “The Prophet of the Spirit: The Use of ruach in the Book of Ezekiel,” in the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, Vol. 32, Issue 1 (1989), p. 40-41), writes this:

“It is often claimed that the normal experience of the Spirit in the OT was external and temporary as compared to the permanent indwelling of the Spirit beginning on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-4). As Daniel I. Block points out, however, such a view overlooks the indispensable animating role of the Spirit in effecting spiritual renewal in the OT (cf. Deut. 30:6), disregards the witness of Psalm 51:10-12 (where David’s continued acceptance in the Divine Presence and the salvific work of the Spirit within him represent his only hope), ignores Jesus’ rebuke of Nicodemus for being ignorant of the regenerating power of the Spirit (John 3:8-10), and misses the point of Ezekiel 36:25-29, which anticipates the day when the transforming work of the Spirit in the lives of people will be the rule rather than the exception.” (Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Volume 3, page 686)


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