December 08, 2020 – Tuesday
John 16:7-11 NIV
7 But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you.
8 When He comes, He will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment:
9 about sin, because people do not believe in Me;
10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see Me no longer;
11 and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.
This is from the opening of Jesus final teaching before His departure – arrest, trials, scourging, crucifixion, burial, resurrection, and ascension into Heaven. From the first verse above (7) Jesus is making it clear it is for their own good that He is going away. That is so the Holy Spirit (Advocate) could come to them and other believers, including us.
Still, one has to wonder how this is better. Consider that the Holy Spirit would actually be with each and every believer. Something that would be impossible with Jesus if He had remained in the flesh. Jesus promised in Matthew 18:20, For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them, something He could not do in the flesh, but only in the Spirit. Thus His departure in the near future was to the advantage of all believers once we received the Holy Spirit or Advocate.
Then we have the long sentence in verse 8-11, When He comes, He will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because people do not believe in Me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see Me no longer; and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned, where Jesus explains a number of things about the Holy Spirit. First the Holy Spirit will not only prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment but convince believers of their sin while exposing it them pointing them to the path of righteousness. The Holy Spirit has to do this because people do not believe in Jesus. Guzik says, It is unbelief, the rejection of Jesus, which ultimately proves one to be guilty. The Holy Spirit will tell the world of the importance of trusting in, relying on, and clinging to Jesus to avoid this sin. Tenney drives this point home more powerfully for both the believer and the unbeliever, The essence of sin is unbelief, which is not simply a casual incredulity nor a difference of opinion; rather, it is a total rejection of God’s messenger and message. This brings to mind something I read many years ago and no longer recall the source, All sin originates in pride where we think we know better than God what is permitted and not permitted.
When Jesus was resurrected the prince of this world was defeated or stands condemned. With the defeat of death the prophecy of Genesis 3:15 was fulfilled where God is addressing the serpent which deceived Eve, And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; He will crush your head, and you will strike His heel. The enmity was between their offspring, but Jesus would defeat Satan even though he would strike His heel via the crucifixion.
Satan was defeated on the cross and the resurrection. He has no claim on anyone who accepts the salvation offered through Jesus. Our choice is the world or the cross and resurrection. Jesus’ words bring great clarity to that choice. We often do our best to avoid that clarity and we do so at great risk. We need to choose and choose wisely.
Prayer: Heavenly Father – Again, thank you for the gift of the Holy Spirit. Thank you also for Jesus’ words making the choice so clear for us. Thank you for Satan’s defeat. – In Jesus name, amen.