This only means that this Divine Love came into their souls in such abundance that they were shaken in their souls, to such an extent that they thought the building in which they were assembled was disturbed. But they were mistaken in this, for the effect of the presence of the Holy Spirit is not to affect the things of inanimate nature, but is confined to the souls of men.
And the preacher must know that because men are possessed with powers to accomplish the mental or material things of their living, they are not necessarily possessed with the Holy Spirit. Much of the physical healing of mortals is caused by spirit powers that are not connected with, or proceed from, the Holy Spirit. That there is evidence of this, men will recollect that the Old Testament is full of instances where men were healed of their diseases, and other wonderful things performed, at the time when the Holy Spirit was excluded from man's possession.
Yet these marvels (as then considered) were performed by men claiming to be endowed with the spirit of God. This spirit of God is still working for the good and happiness of mankind, and it will continue to work until men shall become in harmony with themselves as first created.
I understand the object of the preacher in attempting to show and convince his hearers that because they have not those powers that, the Bible describes as having been possessed by my disciples after the bestowal of the Holy Spirit, they must not believe and conclude from that that they (his hearers) have not this blessing. His intentions and efforts were commendable, and arose from the desire that his hearers should not become disheartened and disappointed in their efforts to obtain the inflowing of the Love that the Holy Spirit brings to men. But on the other hand, his teachings were dangerous and misleading to these hearers. For the natural consequence of such teaching is to lead men into the belief or persuasion that they possess this Power and Comforter, when they do not, thus preventing them from seeking for and obtaining this Comforter in the only Way in which It can be obtained.
The Holy Spirit primarily has nothing to do with great mental or physical achievements. To say that because a man is a great inventor or philosopher or surgeon, who does things without knowing where the inspiration or suggestion to do these things comes from, and therefore he is possessed of the Holy Spirit, is all wrong and misleading.
All things, mediately or immediately, have their existence and operation and growth in the spirit of God, and only in that spirit. And this spirit is evidenced in many and varied ways in men's experience. Hence men say that they live and move and have their being in God, meaning only that they live and move and have their being in God's spirit. This spirit is the source of life and light and health and numerous other blessings that men possess and enjoy - the sinner as well as the saint, the poor man as well as the rich, the ignorant as well as the enlightened and educated - and each and all are dependent on this spirit for their being and comfort.
This is the spirit that all men possess to a greater or lesser degree. And the brilliant preacher or teacher or orator, possessing this spirit to a greater degree than his less favored brother, depends upon the same spirit. It is universal in its existence and workings, is omnipresent, and may be acquired by all men in this sense: to the degree that their mental receptivity permits. And this further demonstrates the fact that God, through and by this spirit, is with men always - in the lowest hells as well as in the highest heavens of the perfect man. It is working continuously, ceaselessly, and always at the call of men, be that call mental or spiritual. It is the thing that controls the universe, of which man's earth is an infinitesimal part.
This is the Spirit of God.
But the Holy Spirit, while a part of the spirit of God, is as distinctive as is the soul of man distinctive from all other creations of God. It is that part of God's spirit that has to do with the relationship of God's Soul and man's soul exclusively. The subject of Its operation is the Divine Love of the Father's Soul, and the object of Its workings is the soul of man; and the great goal to be reached by Its operations is the transforming of the soul of man into the substance of the Father's Love, with Immortality as a necessary accompaniment.
This is the Great Miracle of the universe; and so high and sacred and merciful is the Transformation, that we call that part of God's spirit that so works, the Holy Spirit.
So let not teachers or preachers teach, or their hearers believe that every part of God's spirit that operates upon the hearts and thoughts and feelings of man, is the Holy Spirit, for it is not true. Its mission is the salvation of men in the sense of bringing them into that harmony with God, whereby the very souls of men will become a part of the Soul of God in substance, and not merely in image. And without this working of the Holy Spirit, men cannot achieve such union.
I have written to you before as to how this Holy Spirit works, the Way in which It can bring men the Divine Love of the Father, and what is necessary for Its inflowing. The Way described is the only Way, and men must not believe and rest in the security of the belief that every working of the spirit of God is the working of the Holy Spirit.
Except a man be born again, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. And such attainment is only possible by the working of the Holy Spirit. Oh preacher, upon whom a great responsibility rests, learn the Truth and then lead men into the Way of salvation!
I will not write more now, but will come again and deliver another message. Believe that I love you and am,
Your friend and brother,