Acts 5:3-4 “But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?1 4 Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.”
In what sense is lying to the Holy Ghost = lying to God? And–the most direct and obvious question–do these verses make the Holy Spirit God?
The answer lies in a simple comparison with Bible texts that offer a similar parallel:
- Mt 25:40 “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” But brethren ≠ Jesus!
- Acts 9:4 “Why persecutes thou me?” Paul was really persecuting Christians, which means persecuting Christ, but . . .Christ ≠ Christians.
- 1 Cor 8:12 “When ye sin so against the brethren . . . ye sin against Christ.” Brethren ≠ Christ.
If the Holy Spirit is God’s representative, of course lying against the Holy Spirit means lying against God – but it doesn’t make the two the same being, nor does it make the Holy Spirit God.