“Wind Dies in a Box”

[Listen to post here.]

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“Wind dies in a box.”

In Scripture, the Holy Spirit is likened unto the wind.

Jesus said, The wind blows wherever it pleases.  You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.  So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” (John 3:8)  We also know that on the day of Pentecost when the Spirit was poured out on the disciples in the Upper Room that: Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting… All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:2,4).  This was a primary manifestation of the Holy Spirit as He was given to the Church after the ascension of Christ. 

So why is the Holy Spirit likened unto the wind?

Here are a few similarities that I can see:

The Hebrew word for “spirit”, “ruach”, literally means “wind”, “breath”.

Wind is an unseen force, the effects of which can be seen, but not the force itself.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind is from above, a “heavenly” force.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind is “sovereign.”  It “blows wherever it pleases.”  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind is unpredictable.  “You cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.”  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind is uncontrollable.  It can be harnessed and utilized to a degree, but it cannot ultimately be controlled by man.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind is unstoppable.  When something obstructs it, it either blows the obstacle out of the way, or it finds another way around it.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind can be gentle and refreshing.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind can be powerful and forceful.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

Wind derives its movement and force from the Sun.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit (and the Son.)

Wind drives atmospheric changes which affect all life on earth one way or another.  The same is true of the Holy Spirit.

… and one last thing,

Wind needs a lot of space to do what wind does.  It doesn’t do well in a box. The same is true of the Holy Spirit.


Boxes are man-made containers meant to hold, store, organize, sort, transport, and protect all sorts of things.  They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and are used for all manner of tasks and purposes.  Pretty much everything that we manufacture, use or consume at one time or another spends time inside of a box.  Boxes are a staple of our consumeristic society and lifestyle.  It is hard to imagine life without them!  We love and need our boxes.

The crazy thing about “boxes”, too, is that they are not only physical.  They can also be mental.  We have “boxes” in our minds made of our personal and collective beliefs, understandings, concepts, philosophies, preferences, biases, habits, and traditions.  We live out our lives inside these mental “boxes”, feel safe inside them, and defend them when they are challenged.  On the other hand, we also tend to admire those who have the creative ability to “think outside the box.”

Of all of the incalculably vast array of items, objects and even ideas that we have put into “boxes”, I think it is fair to say that NO ONE has ever seriously tried to put WIND in a BOX!  Most of us know instinctively that is foolish.

So why is it that when it comes to the WIND OF GOD, the Holy Spirit, we lose all of our human instincts and common sensibilities, and seek to confine the Unconfineable?  We build our “boxes” out of our experiences and expectations, our capacities and comfort zones, our preferences and prejudices, our agendas and aspirations, and then we expect the Holy Spirit to come and nestle down inside of them.  We treat Him as a product for our consumption and reckon that in order for “it” to be contained, controlled, preserved, and portioned out, we need “it” in a “box.”  The Holy Spirit, however, is not a consumable “it”, but a Sovereign “Him”, and He needs a lot of space to do what He does.  When we “box Him in”, we, more often than not, end up “boxing Him out.”

God in a Box???

Many religious leaders and Christian congregations have the appearance of great reverence and respect for God the Father and God the Son, Jesus Christ, but have little esteem, in reality, for the Holy Spirit.  They may speak of Him reverently with their lips, but their true esteem is shown by their actions towards Him, not their words.  The Holy Spirit, if acknowledged or sought at all in the assembly, is often treated as a something of an accessory, an accent, a nicety, a condiment, a garnish.  He is welcomed and allowed just enough room to bring a hint of grace and life, and possibly even a few gifts or manifestations, but these are usually only allowed to the degree that they fit nicely into the particular “box” the assembly regularly lives in.  Rarely is He treated as Who He truly is….GOD!

He is as much GOD, however, as God the Father and God the Son are, and is inextricably One with them in Divine essence, purpose, and presence.  The Triune God cannot be separated.  The degree to which we show the least esteem to any one Person of the Godhead, therefore, is the degree to which we actually esteem all of them.  Likewise, when we “box in”, and in the process “box out”, the Holy Spirit, we “”box in” and “box out” the Father and the Son as well.  It cannot be otherwise!

The Holy Spirit is that member of the Godhead Who has been given to the Church as the Operative Power to carry out the will of the Father through the Headship of the Son.  He is, therefore, indispensable to the existence, life, purpose, functionality, ministry, and mission of the Church.  The will of the Father cannot be fulfilled and carried out in and through the Church without the manifest Headship of the Son, and the manifest Headship of the Son cannot be inwrought and outworked in and through the Church without the full and unhindered work of the Holy Spirit.  If the Holy Spirit is “boxed up”, so is the Headship of the Son, and, consequently, so is the will of the Father.  It is just that simple!

Ultimately, the will of the Father in creation, redemption, the Church, and the Kingdom, is, “that in all things He (Christ) might have the preeminence.” (Colossians 1:18)  The Holy Spirit is ever working with that end in view.  Wherever the Holy Spirit is “unboxed”, Christ will be brought to center stage in all of His fullness, centrality and supremacy, that the Father may be ultimately glorified and satisfied.  Wherever the Holy Spirit is given full rein in the life and assembly of the ekklesia, the governance of the church will shift from the overlording control of men and from the lifeless, rigid, forms of religious practices and protocols and placed back in the hands of Him to Whom it belongs.  Wherever the Holy Spirit is fully honored and submitted to as GOD in the midst of the church, He will administer the will of the Father, through the Headship of the Son, to and through a many-membered body yielded to His leadings, giftings, ministries, and workings.  Wherever the Holy Spirit is free to be Himself, He will not seek to glorify Himself, but will direct all attention and glory to the Father and to the Son.  These will be the marks of the “unboxed” work of the Holy Spirit.

~ ~ ~

We love the wind for what it does, but the wind can also be scary.  The wind is beyond human control, and sometimes it is mighty and even violent.  We cannot direct it, we cannot contain it, and we cannot predict it.  When it comes to the Wind of God, the same is true as well.  The question is, will we trust that the Wind of God, if given full and free rein, will always act in perfect submission to the Father and the Son as their appointed Agent to carry out Their perfect will in and through the Church?  If we cannot fully trust and surrender to Him, we, in reality, cannot fully trust and surrender to the Father and the Son, as well.  If we, collectively, cannot yield the reins of our corporate life and gatherings to the Holy Spirit, then we, in actuality, are wresting the reins from both the Father and the Son.  Brothers and sisters, this ought not to be!  It is time that we “unbox” the Wind that the Father and the Son may once again have Their way in Their Church.

For all the good that we think we may be doing by keeping everything in a nice, neat BOX, we must never, ever, forget that…

“Wind DIES in a box.”

The Holy Spirit
The Headship of Christ in the Gathering of the Church
The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit – by R. A. Torrey (free audiobook)
The Full Blessing of Pentecost – by Andrew Murray (free audiobook)

About David Bolton

Following Him who is the Way; learning of Him who is the Truth; living by Him who is the Life. - John 14:6
This entry was posted in Christ-Centered Gatherings, Expanded RTs, The Headship of Christ, The Holy Spirit and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to “Wind Dies in a Box”

  1. “The degree to which we show the least esteem to any one Person of the Godhead, therefore, is the degree to which we actually esteem all of them.”
    A true statement and sobering also. Would the Holy Spirit be treated so poorly in some sections of the church if this was really understood? I think not. Thankyou David for another excellent article.


  2. The thought that came to mind as I read was, ” wind cannot be simulated because simulation requires a controlled environment…”. My view of Christ is enlarged by this article – thank you David.


  3. Whitney Moore says:

    This reminds me of the picture I never showed you guys using tiny boxes of cereal from the Variety Pack. God showed me to empty them all into one big bowl and to mix them all so they were completely intermingled, and then to say, “Bread of Life… Poured out for many…” Thank you for sharing! A gift, as always — an excellent metaphor with Biblical substance — refreshing CLARITY he;ping to reveal the simplicity of Kingdom Life. Thanks and love to you and yours!


  4. Lloyd Bowden says:



  5. David Bolton says:

    Thank you all for your comments!

    Cheryl at breadforthebride – I agree. The Holy Spirit seems to be something of the “black sheep” of the Godhead in many sections of the Church. How appalling that is, and how tragic. May we pray for His restoration to His rightful place that the headship of Christ may be restored through Him, to the glory and pleasure of the Father! Thank you for your encouragement!

    Partick – Thank you…and the thought came to my mind as I read your comment that it seems that what tends to be generated in many of these “controlled environments” is merely “hot air” rather than Wind. At least that is how it hit me very early in the morning when I read it! 🙂 I am glad your view of Christ was enlarged! Blessings, my brother,

    Whitney – Yes, I appreciate that picture. When we break down and break free from these boxes, not only will the Spirit be free to fully be Himself in our midst, but we will be free to fully be who we are IN Him. Part of that will be us being the one body of Christ, the one bowl of cereal (fruits, nuts, flakes and all 🙂 ) May we stand for that testimony even now in this day of sectarian, “boxed and labeled” Churchianity.

    Lloyd – What can I say brother, but…. “and Amen!!!” Love you!


  6. jimpuntney says:

    The Lord is speaking with ‘One’ voice, He is done with the man based religiosity. He desires to be our Pastor, Shepherd, and King, and just as in marriage to have no others before Him. This relationship is out of the box, and in the open, where He is free to communicate His will with, and ‘in’ us.


    • David Bolton says:

      Thanks, Jim, for your comment. As I read it, a number of portions of Scripture came to mind. First, Isaiah 66:1-2. This is how I paraphrased it in my mind: “This is what the Lord says: ‘Heaven is my throne and the earth is my footstool, where is the BOX (“house”) you will build for me?…This is the one I esteem, he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and who trembles at WHAT I AM SAYING (“my word”)’ ” That is fleshed out in the New Testament on the Mount of Transfiguration when Moses and Elijah appear with Jesus in glory. Peter’s reaction is to go into “box-building mode”. The Father interrupts him with a thick cloud and thunders, “This is my Son, whom I love. LISTEN TO HIM.” (Matt. 17:5) And when the cloud lifted, Jesus was there alone. That “One” voice that you spoke of is “the spirit of prophecy….the testimony of Jesus” (Rev. 19:10)…”God has spoken to us in His Son” (Heb.1:2) And He is outside all BOXES… “where He is free to communicate His will with, and ‘in’ us.”
      Amen, brother. Thanks for stirring those thoughts!


  7. Great insight here, David. Thanks.


  8. Geno says:

    Excellent post that fits in very well with the thrust of my own site. God is moving, bro.


    • David Bolton says:

      Amen, yes He is! Thanks for commenting Geno. May God bless your labors in declaring the truth of Christ and His Church in this end time! I look forward to exploring your site more fully. Blessings!


      • Thanks for the warm welcome, David. If you get a chance, give me feedback on the site.

        I’m also looking forward to checking out this site some more.


        • David Bolton says:

          Yes, welcome, Geno. I like what I’ve seen and read so far on your site. Your heart for God’s eternal purpose in Christ and for His Church to be what she is created and called to be is very evident. I think we have much in common. I trust you will be encouraged by what you find here as well. God’s Spirit is clearly working throughout the earth to call a remnant to Himself to be a purified testimony in these last days. May we be a part of it and co-laborers with Him in the gathering and purifying of His Bride. Glad to have made the connection with you!


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