John 14:26 (ESV): 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

[Jhn 14:26 MGNT] (26) ὁ δὲ παράκλητος τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον ὃ πέμψει ὁ πατὴρ ἐν τῷ ὀνόματί μου ἐκεῖνος ὑμᾶς διδάξει πάντα καὶ ὑπομνήσει ὑμᾶς πάντα ἃ εἶπον ὑμῖν ἐγώ

Does John 14:26 mention three distinct persons?

  • 3
    Questions like these aren't the best questions. Are you genuinely asking? This is a polite cousin of what we call "stump the chump" questions. Most readers, not even just limited to Trinitarians, would say yes, of course it mentions three persons. A few would disagree. But that issue, over the doctrine of God, can't be resolved by referencing just one verse like this. It might be better to ask on Christianity how those who reject the distinct personhood of the Spirit interpret this verse. But for this site? I'm not really sure what exegetical insights a Q&A like this can bring.
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 3:19
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    @curiousdannii - update: question asked on Christianity: christianity.stackexchange.com/questions/80875/…
    – user38524
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 3:55

5 Answers 5


The Evidence

    1. There is that which is 'sent'.
    1. That which is 'sent' has a function - advocate/paraclete
    1. That which is 'sent' is 'sent' by the Father
    1. That which is 'sent' is described as 'holy'
    1. That which is 'sent' is 'sent' in a name. By that name is the sending.
    1. That which is 'sent' is 'Spirit'.
    1. Jesus said that 'God' is 'Spirit'. John 4:24

The Conclusion

The only possible, logical, conclusion is that this is a person.

And with no other clarification, such as the suggestion, anywhere in scripture, that this is an angelic being, one has to conclude that since this (otherwise undesignated person) is sent by the Divine Person of the Father in the name of the Son, and that this person (in and of himself) is holy and has the function of being (in and of himself) an advocate/paraclete and is sent in the name of the Son : one's only conclusion is that this is God, the Holy Spirit.

I can see no other, possible, logical conclusion from these simple words.

The wording used by Jesus cannot accommodate to the concept of a 'force' or 'attribute' or 'aspect'.

One cannot send a part of oneself, in the name of another person, to carry out a function, independently of oneself. Words, language, logic cannot be adjusted to express such a concept. Because such a thing does not exist.

The words, the language, convey the concept of 'Person'.

Therefore, one Person, sends another Person who is holy and who has a function ; and sends that Person in the name of another Person.

Three concepts are conveyed in these words. These concepts are expressed in wording which implies, alludes to, and conveys - 'Person'.

The unity of person, elsewhere expressed in scripture, can be seen in this verse, also. But that was not the question. Only the fact of person was, here, under discussion.

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    My good friend - while I completely and totally agree with your conclusion, I am not sure that all this can be deduced from John 14:26 - all that come from many other passages.
    – Dottard
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 21:18
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    That is my point - the evidence you quote does not imply the conclusion. Put yourself in the position of the Arian or Unitarian and you will see my point.
    – Dottard
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 21:22
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    That is a great pity - seeing things from the other person's point of view makes good argument and is a central requirement of the Christian's virtues as stated in the Golden Rule of Matt 7:2-12.
    – Dottard
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 22:04
  • @Dottard I disagree with your opinions, sir. And I prefer not to comment any further to yourself on this particular answer. Thank you.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 22:06

Yes, three distinct persons are in view at John 14:26. The same point is also stated at John 14:16, "And I/Jesus Christ will ask the Father, and He/the Father will give you "another" Helper/Paraclete/Comforter, that He/the Holy Spirit may be with you forever."

In reading the context of John 14 it is without a doubt that three persons are in view, and "NOT" three "aspects" of three kinds of fruit that one poster mentioned.

At John 14:11, Jesus says, "Believe Me that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe on account of the works themselves." Moreover, to back up John 14:11, Jesus says at John 14:23, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father, will love him, and WE will come to Him, and make "OUR" Abode with him."

The "We" of "we will come unto him" refers to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. This took place for the disciples at Pentecost.


The verse mentions 3 aspects of God's communicating and presence - Himself, His son and His Holy Spirit. We see from the following verses that the Holy Spirit is the spirit of the Father and not a separate entity.

Matthew 10:20 for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.

Luke 12:12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say

There is no pressing need for 'whom' in the Greek - 'which' would also be suitable and more accurate.

We must conclude an understanding from all scripture - this one verse on it's own proves nothing about 3 'persons'.

Luke 10:22 All things have been handed over to Me by My Father, and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, and who the Father is except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.

So clearly, the Holy Spirit as a 'person' has no idea about who Jesus is... this is but one of many examples. Are three distinct persons mentioned in John 14:26? The answer then is No!

We had 1 John 5:7 that was more specific - but that was a forgery.

  • Interesting - "the Holy Spirit as a 'person' has no idea about who Jesus is" - WOW. This, despite John 16:113, 14, Rom 8:26, 27 etc. You clearly have another Bible.
    – Dottard
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 22:29
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    Perhaps some re-evaluating is required... Jesus says, 'no one except the Father'. Very specific and no wiggle room. You need to work it out from there. I've just given you some clues - stop reading in that which is not there!
    – Steve
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 22:33
  • ... or are you having a problem with Rom 2:1 - not reading what IS there?
    – Dottard
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 23:43
  • Jesus says, 'no one except the Father'. Very specific and no wiggle room. - The complete saying is "no one knows Who the Son is except the Father, and Who the Father is except the Son" Applying your logic also means the Holy Spirit has no idea who the Father is either. Commented Oct 15, 2022 at 16:12
  • @RevelationLad Yes, finally the reality is stating to make sense to you. Keep up the good work! The scripture has all the clues and truth needed to understand God the way He intended and showing the illogical dogma up for what it is - a weapon of mass distraction.
    – Steve
    Commented Oct 15, 2022 at 20:22

Not sure how we could justify the above? Scripture is crystal clear.

Firstly God is not a man:

Numbers 23:19 I am not a man that I would sin nor the son of man that I would repent.
Hosea 11:9 I will not destroy Ephraim, for I am God and not a man

So God is definitely not a person.

Secondly, The Holy Spirit is never defined as a person. In 385 occurrences G4151 is never translated as a person, human being, etc. G4151 translates as current of air, breath.

So short answer, In John 14:26 only 1 person is mentioned, our brother & God’s Lamb.

  • I don't think personhood is exclusive to mankind. Commented Oct 16, 2022 at 13:52
  • I am not (at this moment) a man...for I am God and not (at this moment) a man. Yet, because all things are possible for God, I will surrender equality with God to and being found in human form, humbled Myself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Commented Oct 17, 2022 at 21:08

2 persons. The Parakletos (the Risen Son) and the Father who sends His Spirit (consciousness) through the Parakletos by way of his name. The Parakletos shares the same Spirit as his Father.

We know this because there is only 1 Eternal Spirit and Jesus told us his God and Father is a Spirit.

Its very simple by design for the babes to understand.

John 14:26

But the Helper(the Risen Son), this holy spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

This is actually the only solution so far stated that is congruent with the rest of scriptures.

Below I will present 2 examples of Truths of Scripture which my conclusion is premised on:

1. John, the same author of the verse in question, plainly tells us the Parakletos is the Risen Son, Jesus Christ.

1 John 2:1

My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have a Parakletos with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

2. There is only 1 eternal Spirit and Jesus tells us its his Father.

Ephesians 4:4

There is one body, and 1 Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

John 4:23-24

23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.

24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.

And just so everything is crystal clear as day... John 20:17

Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and my God, and your God.

Your God is Jesus Christ's God.

Anything else (conceived in the minds of men so far),which claims 2 eternal spirits, contradicts these 2 objective Truths of Scripture, and therefore is not a product of the 1 Spirit of Truth but false spirits who have infiltrated the brick and mortar corporate babylonian mega structure called the "Christian Church" today.

  • @RLM I would have ask the question, "Why are there three distinct persons at John 14:26? And at John 14:16, "And I/Jesus Christ will ask the Father/Person #2, and He/the Father will give you ANOTHER Helper/the Holy Spirit, that He/the HS may be with you forever." Now, I'm not a math genius but I can count three distinct persons in this verse. If the Father and the Holy Spirit are one and the same person can you please explain why there is a distinction of persons in this verse and at John 14:26? Also, read Acts 5:3-4 where the Holy Spirit is distinct from the Father and identified as God.
    – Mr. Bond
    Commented Oct 14, 2022 at 17:45
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    I find it highly unlikely John would write the Gospel giving the words of Jesus on this essential aspect of becoming a Christian only to essentially "recant" this as his own opinion in the subsequent epistle. Far more intelligible is the epistle states in clear terms the equality of Jesus and the Holy Spirit...both are called parakeltos which, as Jesus explained before His death and resurrection, is another ἄλλον. Clearly equal equally clearly separate...exactly as the Word and God. Commented Oct 17, 2022 at 21:03
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    @Revelation Lad. The prophets ,our brother Messiah & disciples were not christians. Nowhere in scripture do we see them subscribing to the notion of a triune God. By contrast the shema is declared as the greatest commandment (Mark 12:28-29) declaring God as one not 1 in 3 or 3 in 1 etc. They kept the Sabbath not Sunday worship; Passover & the feasts not Easter Christmas etc; They upheld the holy Law as our wedding vows & didn't abolish them. Clearly we have 2 different opposing ideologies.
    – Craig
    Commented Oct 17, 2022 at 23:25
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    @Craig The Bible is a progressive revelation of God. This means we know more at the end then at the beginning. The NT is filled with the Triune God, which is why that belief developed the concise terminology "Trinity." Also do not confuse how people expressed their worship with who they worshipped. IOW, do not assume a different approach to observing the OT calendar now is a result in a wrong understanding of God anymore than a rigid approach to observing it reflects a correct understanding. We did stop sacrificing animals for reasons not found in the OT. Commented Oct 18, 2022 at 22:36
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    @Revelation Lad. I agree regarding progressive revelation. I completely disagree regarding a Triune God. As I stated above our Messiah declared the greatest commandment in Mark 12:28-29 that God is ONE GOD & yes Mark is the NT although our brother was teaching from the OT as Mark 12:28-29 mirrors Deu 6:4. If what you claim is true then surely our Messiah would've joyfully declared that God is 3 as the greatest commandment but nope, that's not what's stated in Mark 12:28.
    – Craig
    Commented Oct 19, 2022 at 10:03

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