Author: Ron Graham
The Indwelling Spirit
—The seal of God
While we have been careful to distinguish between things which differ, we must also be careful not to separate things which are the same. So we reflect this in the tenth of our 17 principles about the promise, oath, and seal of God.
10th principle: The seal is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
The gift, renewing, outpouring, indwelling, and seal of the Spirit are all terms for the same blessing of the Spirit, namely that unbreakable seal which God added to his promise and his oath, and which is common to all Christians.
Here is a chart comparing the terms used for the giving of the Holy Spirit.
Five Interchangeable Terms
1. The gift of the Holy Spirit
Peter promised "the gift of the Holy Spirit" to all believers who would repent and be baptized. He made it quite clear as to how many receive the forgiveness of sins and the gift of the Spirit. "The promise is to... as many as the Lord our God shall call".
2. The renewing of the Holy Spirit
All those who are saved through "the washing of regeneration" receive "the renewing of the Holy Spirit". Note that regeneration means rebirth or being born again.
3. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit
In the same passage it says that the Holy Spirit is "poured out abundantly" upon those saved by that washing and renewing, upon those who are justified by God’s grace, upon those who are heirs of eternal life.
4. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit
(Romans 8:5-17 esp v. 9 & 11)
Speaking to all Christians, Paul said, "Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not his" and he says that we have life from Christ only "if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you"
5. The seal of the Holy Spirit
Paul said that those who heard the gospel, and who believed, were sealed with the Holy Spirit as an “earnest” or guarantee of their salvation.
Now it would be very hard to distinguish between these things. The gift, renewing, outpouring, indwelling, and seal of the Spirit, are best understood as all being one and the same blessing. Otherwise things become very complicated and confused.