The Comforter

Hope for Today (English)
Hope for Today (English)
The Comforter
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John 16:7-11

Hello and welcome to Hope for Today. The program you’re listening to is produced by Heralds of Hope. We’re an international Gospel media ministry. Each week our Bible teaching broadcasts circle the globe in English and 22 other languages. We are honored the be here with you today. Thank you for joining us. We will continue our study from the book of John in just a bit; before we do that, I’d like to share a few things with you.

Here are a few testimonies from other listeners. The first one is from Edwin in Kenya; he writes, “Thank you for keeping us in the word of God through radio and for helping us to keep on looking to the Lord in all things.”  Amoah from Ghana shares, “I started listening to Hope for Today in my youthful day, over 20 years ago, and I am still listening due to the Spiritual contents.”

We appreciate hearing from you, and if you’d like to share how this program has impacted you, we would love to hear about it. Just keep listening; I’ll give you our contact info at the end of J Mark’s teaching. Today he will be teaching from John 16 verses 7-11; the title is The Comforter.

In these verses, Jesus tells us He is leaving, but the Comforter is coming, and Jesus tells us what the Spirit will do when He comes. As he describes what the Spirit will do, it is obvious these are things only God is capable of. We believe God has shown himself to exist as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. This is not an easy concept for us to understand. However, if our God is infinite and we are finite, we should not be surprised that we can’t understand Him or figure Him all out. I am actually thankful God is beyond comprehension and we will never be able to completely understand Him.

Here are 2 verses which point to the doctrine of the trinity. John 10:30 Jesus says, “I and the Father are one.” Jesus calls Himself one with the Father, the Jews at the time understood him to be saying He was equal with God. So, they immediately took up stones to stone Him because of His blasphemy, and this statement is blasphemous for anyone except Jesus. He alone is able to claim equality with God because He is God.

Second, consider Genesis 1:26, “God said, let us make man in our image” Notice God refers to Himself using plural pronouns; we use these words to refer to more than one. What happened? Did God get the wrong word? Absolutely not; God knew exactly what he was doing, and when we are confused by God’s word choice, there is a good chance there is a great lesson there for us. This verse points to the plurality of God’s nature. We will never completely understand this or be able to explain it, but we believe and trust Him, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Now let’s give our attention to J Mark for more teaching on the Holy Spirit.

God made us so we can think. He made us with minds, and we can, in a large measure, think like He thinks. But even though we can think, and in some measure think like God thinks, we will never know everything. Especially not just by thinking.

Because we cannot know everything, it is necessary for us to have somebody to help us, somebody to guide us. Now the Lord knew that; yes, God knew our need. So in His plan, He sent a helper whom He called THE COMFORTER; somebody who could guide and help us. Jesus told His disciples about that part of God’s plan in John 16:7-11.

7. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.

8. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

9. Of sin, because they believe not on me;

10. Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;

11. Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

The Comforter: that is what Jesus called Him in the first verse of this text. Jesus gives us two CLARIFICATIONS regarding this Comforter.

He wanted the disciples to clearly understand The Promise of His Coming.

Comforter will work. He will reprove the world of sin; Jesus is speaking to the disciples in one of those last discourses before His leaving them. Jesus said, “For if I go not away, the Comforter will not come to you.” It was, therefore, necessary for Jesus to go back to the One who sent Him, even as He earlier had told them, in order for the Comforter to come. He said if He did go back, then He would send the Comforter unto them.

The Comforter is the name of the One who was to come to follow Jesus, to be with the disciples, and to do the work that Jesus had begun.

When Jesus went back to the Father, the Father sent the Comforter just like He promised Jesus He would do. Jesus spoke of the close connection between the Comforter and Him. While we may not understand all that Jesus intended by this statement, we can understand that He said, “The Comforter will come when I go away.” That surely is a clarification regarding the Comforter.

In close relation to the promise of the coming of the Comforter, Jesus wanted His disciples to understand The Purpose of His Coming.

We want to think about this and try to follow exactly what Jesus said, “When he (that is the Comforter) has come, he will reprove the world of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment.”

Let us examine first this word reprove. It means He will convict; He will accuse; He will stand in judgment over the world because of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. Make a careful note of the relation; Jesus is referring to the Comforter’s relationship to the world. Jesus always made a difference between the world and the disciples, you see. So, He was saying to the disciples that when the Comforter has come, then He will have a work to do with respect to the world.

What is the purpose of His coming? To convict, accuse the world. There are three particular areas in which Jesus said. Now notice in verse 9 why He will do that. He will reprove the world of sin because they do not believe on Jesus. That is very important. A lack of faith in Jesus will bring the accusing of the Comforter to the world and His reproving in the world.

People make up the world, and the Comforter will convict and accuse them because they do not believe on Jesus.

One time Jesus said to those around Him, “You will not come to me that you might have life.” They did not come because they did not believe on Jesus. The Comforter is going to reprove and bring an accusation against those people who do not believe in Jesus. Do you believe in Jesus? What do you believe about Him?

Then He will also accuse the world because of righteousness. “Of righteousness,” Jesus said, “because I go to my Father, and you see me no more.” What righteousness do you suppose Jesus had reference to? Well, certainly not our righteousness, because the Prophet Isaiah 700 years before said that our righteousnesses are as filthy rags. So it must be that the Comforter is going to accuse the world of the righteousness of Jesus. That seems to be exactly what He meant, because He said, “Because I go to my Father and you see me no more.

Believe me, my friend, every record we can find about the life of Jesus tells us that He lived without sinning. He did not have any sin. He was absolutely righteous. That is the reason why He could go to the Father without anybody ushering Him into His presence. That is not true of us; that is not true of anybody else except Jesus. So, the Comforter is going to accuse the world of righteousness to show how we need help.

Then the third area where He is going to work is to accuse the world of judgment.

The reason is the prince of this world is judged. Who is the prince of the world? The devil, Satan, is the prince of this world. Yes, Jesus said so, and so did the Apostle Paul. Jesus said that the Comforter is going to accuse the people of the world that are not disciples of Jesus. He is going to accuse them of judgment because the prince of this world already stands under the judgment of God. It is not a question of having a trial. The trial has already been held, and Satan is under the judgment of God. That would mean, of course, that anyone who follows Satan would also be under the judgment of God; the decision, the sentence has already been passed.

Now, you see how important an understanding of the Comforter is for us. Jesus was gracious to give us these two clarifications about the Comforter: the promise that He will come and the purpose of His coming. He came to convict and accuse the world: of sin, because they believe not on Jesus; of righteousness, because Jesus is the only righteous one and He has gone to the Father; of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.

There you have the truth from Jesus about the Comforter. He has come, my friend. Yes, and He is working. He is doing exactly what Jesus said He would do. Has He spoken to you in any way about your sin, about the righteousness of Jesus, about the judgment of the prince of this world?

Thank you, J. Mark, for this teaching about the Holy Spirit, and thank you for sharing with us from God’s word. What do you think? Was today’s teaching helpful? Feel free to share with us your thoughts from today’s program. Or if you’d like to hear it again, just let us know. Here are several ways you can contact us.

The quickest way for you to connect with us is to send an email to mail@heraldsofhope.org. Or you could write to us our address is Hope for Today, Box 3, Breezewood, Pennsylvania 15533. If you would like today’s teaching, just ask for it by title; today’s title was The Comforter. We can give you a printed copy or a digital copy; just tell us your preference, and we’d be happy to help.

When you contact us, feel free to request our Bible Study Guide, Hope Herald. It follows these radio programs and has questions from today’s teaching so we can better apply it to our lives. All you have to do is ask for a copy of Hope Herald.

Here’s the contact information again. Our email address is mail@heraldsofhope.org. Or write to Hope for Today, Box 3, Breezewood, Pennsylvania 15533. Or if you forget any of this, just go to our website, heraldsofhope.org. There you will find all our information, and our Bible teaching programs are available. Of course, you can access the website whenever and wherever you have internet; again, our website is heraldsofhope.org 

Now, I encourage you to join us next week as Pastor J. Mark continues teaching from John’s Gospel. We look forward to being with you again next week. Until then, keep walking with Jesus, He’s our hope for today.