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JOHN - The Light Shines in the Darkness
A Bible Study Course on the Gospel of Christ according to John
PART 3 - Light Shines in the Circle of the Apostles (John 11:55 - 17:26)
D - The Farewell on the way to Gethsemane (John 15:1 - 16:33)

4. The Holy Spirit reveals history's most significant developments (John 16:4-15)

JOHN 16:12-13
12 I have yet many things to tell you, but you can’t bear them now. 13 However when he, the Spirit of truth, has come, he will guide you into all truth, for he will not speak from himself; but whatever he hears, he will speak. He will declare to you things that are coming.

Christ is all-knowing, and wished to inform his beloved disciples about the secrets of the heavens and the future, but the abilities of soul and mind could not absorb such truths in full. So we cannot logically realize that Christ is seated at God’s right hand in heaven, yet at the same time dwells in our hearts, unless the reasoning of the Spirit would illumine us. Similarly, we cannot naturally grasp that God is one in three persons. This the human brain is unable to comprehend, but the Spirit helps our infirmities and illumines our minds. He can reveal the secrets of the future to us and the hidden thoughts of hearts, for he knows the secrets of the Holy Trinity.

Christ foretold that the Spirit of truth would come and lead them into all truth. What is truth? Jesus did not employ the plural "truths" as if describing earthly facts, but in the singular, as when he said, "I am the Truth". The revelation concerning the Spirit’s coming means that he will lead us into the fullness of Christ in action and essence. In so far as Jesus is not a mere man, but the Father is in him, and he in the Father. So the guiding into all the truth means knowledge of the Father and our abiding in His love and survival in eternity. The word "Truth" in the gospel does not mean legal truth or logical validity or even moral truthfulness only, but its meanings are wider, and cover all facts, general and specific. Thus the Spirit leads us to heavenly truths that we may know God in the Trinity and experience His miraculous powers.

With all that, the Holy Spirit is an independent Person, speaking, listening, with a free will, yet at the same time he does not do anything except the Father’s will. He does not come with special thoughts, but tells us what the Father has said. In the Holy Trinity there is nothing except mutual submission in the freedom of love. He is faithful in the witness he transmits from the Son of God. Thus he wishes to build up the whole Church as Christ’s body, that she might be perfect at the coming of Christ, her Bridegroom.

JOHN 16:14-15
14 He will glorify me, for he will take from what is mine, and will declare it to you. 15 All things whatever the Father has are mine; therefore I said that he takes of mine, and will declare it to you.

The motive behind the work of the Holy Spirit is the glory of Christ. Just as Jesus denied himself and transferred all honor to his Father alone, so also the Holy Spirit does not honor himself, but glorifies Jesus in all his acts. This teaches us not to talk about our experiences, victories and actions, but rather to glorify Jesus the Savior alone. It is not our conversion that is primarily important, but the washing of our sins in Christ’s precious blood. The movements of the Spirit, his powers and purposes have one goal, the glorifying of Jesus who purchased us for himself. The Holy Spirit works through the witness of Christ’s apostles effectively when they present Christ to hearers as crucified and risen.

The Holy Spirit does not carry out a work all his own, but accomplishes what Jesus began in word and deed. He reminds the disciples of Jesus words, and brings out his divine life in them. He impels them to keep his commandment, rooting them in their Savior. We see from a distance a mutual relationship constant in the Holy Trinity. One Person does not take honor to himself, but honors, magnifies the other always.

During his earthly ministry, Jesus said in all humility, "The Father is greater than I", but in his farewell address he said, "All authority is given me in heaven and on earth", for Jesus created all in fellowship with the Father. The Father is his own, just as every father belongs to his children, as he belongs to them.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus Christ, you ransomed us on the cross, and removed our burden of sins. We thank you for your surpassing love. Fill us with your Holy Spirit, so that our whole life may glorify your sacrifice and resurrection. Free us from indolence, hypocrisy and pride, that we may live in the truth of your virtues.


  1. How does the Holy Spirit work in the world’s development?


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