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Work of the Holy Spirit

Critical Lessons from Jesus (John 13 - 17)  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented
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The Work of the Holy Spirit (John 16:4b-15; Page 902) Introduction We continue in our study of the teachings of Jesus during his final hours before His crucifixion, with the understanding He is trying to communicate important information to His disciples for the trying hours and days to follow. Teachings which are important to us, His disciples today as well. This morning we are looking as additional teachings about the Holy Spirit. “I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. 5 But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6 But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. 7 Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. 8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. 12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 1. Jesus’ Absence Brings Sorrow (John 16:4-6) Jesus is continuing to prepare His disciples for his ‘departure.’ These final comments are to prepare them for His Absence and he clearly recognizes that this gives them sorrow and brings to mind Matt 9:15 and John 14:1 15 And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. The disciples have just spent three years following Jesus, from one end of Israel to the other, Galilee to Judea. They have seen demons driven out, by the hand and the name of Jesus. They have seen him feed thousands with just a few loaves and fish. They have seen many, many healed. They have heard His teachings, believe He is the Messiah, the Son of the Living God, and expect Him to become King of Israel, if not the world. Now they hear that he is departing without fulfilling these dreams. Worse, he is leaving them, predicting that he will be betrayed and denied by themselves. Their hearts are filled with sorrow and grief and unfulfilled dreams and expectations. Sorrow, not associated with godly grief over one’s sins, has a way of numbing and hardening the heart. In verse 12 Jesus tells His disciples that they cannot bear now, their hearts being numb, even hardened by sorrow. Does this at times apply to us? Have you ever been so overwhelmed by grief, frustration, even anger, that you have become insensitive, even resistant to God’s prompting and direction? Perhaps the loss of a job, a spouse; perhaps a difficult situation or a diagnosis? You are not alone, as even the disciples experienced this; it is part of the human condition and the result of sin and our sin nature. However, to be right with God we cannot remain in this state, but must recognize our rebellious state, repent and return to God. 2. We benefit from Jesus’ ‘Absence’ (v. 7) 7 Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. What Jesus shares in verse 7 must have confused the disciples. Even now with hindsight it is still counter-intuitive. Again, I’m sure the disciples were confused, as we would be. Surely, having Jesus’ physically present would seem to offer more assurance. Yet, having him present is seeing with our eyes, not with faith. Paul tells us in 2 Cor 5:6-7: So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight. Ultimately, our reassurance should come from faith, not sight. If Jesus had not left them, we would not have salvation, for Jesus had to go to the cross and die for our redemption, to remove the eternal penalty of our sins. This is the first advantage. Jesus also states that without his leaving, the Helper cannot come. He does not state why, yet it may have been related to covering our unrighteousness, our sinfulness, with His righteousness, that the righteous and Holy Spirit could come into our lives. Without the righteousness of Jesus covering us, the righteous Holy Spirit would not be welcome in us. Further, the Holy Spirit rested on Jesus since His baptism and apparently did until He was restored to the Father after His crucifixion. 3. The Work of the Spirit (v. 8-11) We come now to the meat of today’s message, the role and world of the Holy Spirit. Remember this term “Helper” can be translated “Counselor” or “Defender” in the legal sense. In ancient Greece, this term for ‘Helper’ referred to a fellow soldier who would fight back to back with you in battle. Previously, we learned the “Helper,” would: • Be the “Spirit of Truth” • Dwell and live in us. • Will be sent by the Father in the name of Jesus • Teach us all things and bring to remembrance all that Jesus taught. • Will bear witness to / give testimony about Jesus Jesus continues to clarify the work and role of the Spirit in verse 8 of our text: 8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. This “Spirit of Truth,” which lives in us, convicts the world in regard to three things: sin, righteousness, and judgment. It is through our lives, as we live in the Spirit and the Spirit dwells in us, the world will be convicted about each. As we love one another, and love others, the Spirit will convict the world. It is as we give testimony to Jesus, that he is the Son of God and lived, died, was buried and was resurrected that the World will be convicted of sin, righteousness and judgment. Concerning sin, which is nothing less rebellion against God, whether in our heart without overt actions, or outwardly expressed, the works of the Holy Spirit bring conviction about sin in our lives and the lives of others. Jesus tells the Jews, in John 8:24: 23 He said to them, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.” Concerning righteousness, Jesus is the definition of righteousness, being right with God the Father. Nothing that we can image can make us right with the Father, only Jesus the righteousness of Jesus the Son of God. Paul shared with the Athenians in Acts 17:31 29 Being then God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of man. 30 The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, 31 because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead. Concerning Judgment, the Ruler (Satan) of this world system has been judged and his sentence is soon to be executed. Jesus shared in John 12:31 30 Jesus answered, “This voice has come for your sake, not mine. 31 Now is the judgment of this world; now will the ruler of this world be cast out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” Jesus identified with us, that we might be saved and Satan, the devil might be destroyed. Consider Hebrews 2:14-15. 14 Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, 15 and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery. 4. The Spirit of Truth (v. 12-13) 12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. We have already touched on the fact that the disciples were burdened with sorrow, betrayal and denial, all working to harden their hearts, preventing them from hearing what he has to share. Yet, the “Spirit of Truth” would come, later when he returns to the Father, that they might be guided in truth, all truth. Note the Spirit withholds nothing. All that he is given he will share, just as Jesus has done while with the Disciples. 5. All for the Glory of God! (v. 14-15) 14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 1 Truly the bottom line for the role of the “Helper,” the “Spirit of Truth” is all about bringing glory to Jesus. Just as Jesus hears and obeys the Father, doing all that he is given, the Spirit likewise lives and moves to hear and obey Jesus, giving Jesus glory and honor. If something appears to be spiritual, yet does not glorify Jesus and the Father, it is not the Holy Spirit. The Spirit does not draw attention to Himself, but points to Jesus and what Jesus has done. In the same way, our lives, filled with the Spirit of Truth dwelling in us, are to give glory to Jesus and to God the Father. How are we to respond/apply As believers we need to remember what the role of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, is in our lives: to glorify Jesus and the Father, to remind us of Jesus’ teachings, and to empower us to obey Jesus’ commands, to love one another. If, today, we do not know Jesus, we need to understand that Holy Spirit is here to convict us of our sin, to convict us of the righteousness of the Son of God and its sufficiency to pay for and cover our sins, and that we may find forgiveness by responding to this good news, accepting it and being baptized, identifying with Jesus in His death, burial and resurrection. Let today be that day in which you find salvation from the penalty of your sinful condition before a Holy God. Hymn: 552—Have Thine Own Way (vs 1,2,3)
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