3.5.5 The Holy Spirit and the church

The epistles of the New Testament express that the Holy Spirit was present in the early Christian congregations. Jesus Christ had promised and sent the Holy Spirit to His disciples as a Helper and Comforter. The church is described as the "house of God", "dwelling place of God", or "temple of the living God" (1 Timothy 3: 15; Ephesians 2: 22; 2 Corinthians 6: 16).


In the old covenant, the temple was the dwelling place of God among His people (1 Kings 8: 13). This image is adopted in the New Testament and employed in order to illustrate the enduring presence of God–and thus also the presence of the Holy Spirit–in the church. Like "living stones", believers are to be "built up [into] a spiritual house" (1 Peter 2: 5).