Is there a difference between the Holy Ghost and the Holy Spirit? I have noticed sometimes people use these interchangeably including in the scriptures but are they really the same-thing? If they are used interchangeable even sometimes in our scriptures, it certainly would make it difficult to figure out.
Joseph gave us a clear explanation of what the Holy Spirit is.
There are two personages who constitute the great, matchless, governing and supreme power over all things--by whom all things were created and made, that are created and made, whether visible or invisible: whether in heaven, on earth, or in the earth, under the earth, or throughout the immensity of space--They are the Father and the Son: The Father being a personage of spirit, glory and power: possessing all perfection and fulness: The Son, who was in the bosom of the Father, a personage of tabernacle, made, or fashioned like unto man, or being in the form and likeness of man, or, rather, man was formed after his likeness, and in his image;--he is also the express image and likeness of the personage of the Father: possessing all the fulness of the Father, or, the same fulness with the Father; being begotten of him, and was ordained from before the foundation of the world to be a propitiation for the sins of all those who should believe on his name, and is called the Son because of the flesh--and descended in suffering below that which man can suffer, or, in other words, suffered greater sufferings, and was exposed to more powerful contradictions than any man can be. But notwithstanding all this, he kept the law of God, and remained without sin: Showing thereby that it is in the power of man to keep the law and remain also without sin. And also, that by him a righteous judgment might come upon all flesh, and that all who walk not in the law of God, may justly be condemned by the law, and have no excuse for their sins. And he being the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, and having overcome, received a fulness of the glory of the Father-possessing the same mind with the Father, which mind is the Holy Spirit, that bears record of the Father and the Son, and these three are one, or in other words, these three constitute the great, matchless, governing and supreme power over all things: by whom all things were created and made, that were created and made: and these three constitute the Godhead, and are one: The Father and the Son possessing the same mind, the same wisdom, glory, power and fulness: Filling all in all--the Son being filled with the fulness of the Mind, glory and power, or, in other words, the Spirit, glory and power of the Father--possessing all knowledge and glory, and the same kingdom: sitting at the right hand of power, in the express image and likeness of the Father--a Mediator for man--being filled with the fulness of the Mind of the Father, or, in other words, the Spirit of the Father: which Spirit is shed forth upon all who believe on his name and keep his commandments: and all those who keep his commandments shall grow up from grace to grace, and become heirs of the heavenly kingdom, and joint heirs with Jesus Christ; possessing the same mind, being transformed into the same image or likeness, even the express image of him who fills all in all: being filled with the fulness of his glory, and become one in him, even as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are one 9 (Lectures on Faith, Lecture 5:2)The Holy Spirit is the mind of God.
45 And behold, the Holy Spirit of God did come down from heaven, and did enter into their hearts, and they were filled as if with fire, and they could speak forth marvelous words. (Helamen 5:45)Holy spirit came down out of heaven and did enter into their heart.
The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us. (D&C 130:22)The question I ask is how can the mind of God be a personage of Spirit? Perhaps they are different.
1 And now I, Nephi, cannot write all the things which were taught among my people; neither am I mighty in writing, like unto speaking; for when a man speaketh by the power of the Holy Ghost the power of the Holy Ghost carrieth it unto the hearts of the children of men.Why the distinction here?
2 But behold, there are many that harden their hearts against the Holy Spirit, that it hath no place in them; wherefore, they cast many things away which are written and esteem them as things of naught. (2 Nephi 33:1-2)
19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of righteousness and truth; and thy dominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.Go re-read these. Do you see it?
(Doctrine and Covenants 121:46)
So when one receives the gift of the holy ghost what are they really receiving? This admonition for us to "receive the Holy Ghost" refers to what?
Joseph also said,
I want to let you know that THE HOLY GHOST KNOWS SOMETHING AS WELL AS YOU DO. ... But I am learned, and know more than all the world put together. THE HOLY GHOST DOES, ANYHOW; AND HE IS WITHIN ME, and comprehends more than all the world; and I WILL ASSOCIATE MYSELF WITH HIM. (Joseph Smith, King Follet Discourse)A Random Thought
The Holy Ghost is now in a state of probation which if he should perform in righteousness he may pass through the same or a similar course of things that the Son has. (The Words of Joseph Smith, p. 245, Sermon delivered at Nauvoo temple grounds on Sunday August 27, 1843 or here)Clearly that is not the "mind of God" right?