“When He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.” John 16:13
In the first part of this series we pointed out that there is a great deal of misunderstanding about the ministry of the third Person of the Godhead, the Holy Spirit. Consequently, this has left the door open for erroneous teaching on the subject. Instead of spending our time criticizing the false teaching, or false teachers, I have chosen to spend the time teaching what the Bible does say about the command to be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18). I also pointed out that in the last hours of our Lord’s earthly life, He spent much of His time with His disciples, among other things preparing them for the coming of the Holy Spirit and what His ministry would be to, in and through them. This ongoing conversation is recorded in chapters 14, 15 and 16 of the gospel of John. In 14:16-17 Jesus said first that the Spirit would indwell Believers, with us in our loneliness, and in us in our weakness.
Secondly, our Lord told His followers that the Holy Spirit would instruct Believers. “The Helper, the Holy Spirit will teach you all things…” (John 14:26a). All we truly know of the Lord is taught to us by the Spirit, and there are three aspects to this teaching. He reminds us! “…and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you” (14:26b). There are times we don’t need to learn a new truth, but sometimes we need the Holy Spirit to “quicken” our spiritual memory to remember a truth He has already taught us! The Spirit also refines us! “When He, the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth” (John 16:13a). You may ask, “Is that not the same as John 14:26a (see above)? No! John 14:26a is inward, and John 16:13a is outward. One, He teaches us. Two, He leads us! One of the “ways” of God is to teach you a truth, then lead you into a life experience that will call on you to exercise that newly discovered truth! In Psalm 103:7 the psalmist says that God made His ways known to Moses, his acts to the children of Israel. The people would acknowledge God’s leadership once He acted, but Moses could anticipate how the Lord would act, because He had learned His ways!
Finally, the Holy Spirit reveals to us. “He will disclose to you what is to come” (John 16:13b). In a travelling ministry I have met many of the Lord’s people, and one subject that comes up often is, “What is the Lord going to do about this, or that? What will He do about this situation in my life?” One of the best ways to answer questions like that is to put the onus where it belongs! If you want to know what tomorrow holds for you, pay attention to what the Lord is teaching you today! He is always preparing us by providing for us. Every child of His has the privilege of a one to one Teacher to student ratio in the Lord’s classroom!
Stay in touch for Part Three!