John 14:15-31 The Holy Spirit and Me
As a person, we all have roles we fulfill when we are in relationship with other people. To some I am a son. With my wife, I am a husband, to four girls, I am a father. To my church, I am a pastor. With some people, I am friend, fellow worker, counselor, maybe some other role. You and I have roles we play depending upon the relationships we have. For the Christian, the Holy Spirit also has roles He plays. I want to share with you seven roles which the Holy Spirit plays in my life. The central command that Jesus gives is to love Jesus by obeying His commands. Jesus is about to leave His disciples and so He shares a special relationship that He will give to every Christian. The purpose of the relationship of the Holy Spirit is to love Jesus and obey Him.
““If you love Me, you will keep My commands.” (John 14:15, HCSB)
What are the commands? Love God and love one another.
“He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and most important command. The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.”” (Matthew 22:37–40, HCSB)
It is the sum total of the Old Testament. Jesus said that the sum total of the New Testament is to love Jesus. Because if a Christian loves Jesus, loving God and others will follow.
But Jesus knows that Christians cannot love well by ourselves. We need Someone to help us. This is where the Holy Spirit comes in. The Holy Spirit has been sent in our lives to help us love Jesus and love others by obeying Jesus. How do we as Christians accomplish that? I have identified these seven roles which the Holy Spirit plays in my life. As I go through this list, I want you to identify ways in which the Holy Spirit can have a relationship with you – to help you love Jesus more and to obey Him better.
SEVEN ROLES THE HOLY SPIRIT PLAYS IN MY LIFE
1. The Holy Spirit is my comforter (John 14:16)
“And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.” (John 14:16, HCSB)
The word for counselor is literally “Paraclete.” It is two Greek words that mean “to stand beside.” This means that the first role of the Holy Spirit is to stand beside me. He is my advocate, my helper, my encourager, and my mediator. I use the word comforter in this case because Jesus begins to describe the Holy Spirit and His role of “being with me.” He is standing beside me.
2. The Holy Spirit is my connection (John 14:17)
“He is the Spirit of truth. The world is unable to receive Him because it doesn’t see Him or know Him. But you do know Him, because He remains with you and will be in you.” (John 14:17, HCSB)
You can’t see the Holy Spirit. Medical science does not have a way to detect Him. There is no Holy Spirit Geiger counter. There is no Spirit-Scanner. One cannot observe the Holy Spirit with observable eyes. Yet, He is exists. He connects the Christian in a relationship with God.
3. The Holy Spirit is my caregiver (John 14:18)
“I will not leave you as orphans; I am coming to you.” (John 14:18, HCSB)
Jesus promised that He would care for me as a Christian. But how was Jesus going to help me and care for me if we was not going to be around? Jesus gives a hint here. The Holy Spirit would not be just my comforter, or connection to God. He would take care of me. Here, we see that the Holy Spirit will not leave me. Jesus compares the eternity connection with God through the Holy Spirit to a foster parent. The Holy Spirit does not own me. Jesus owns me. Yet, Jesus has transferred guardianship or custody of me to the Holy Spirit.
Jesus begins John 14 by describing the fact that He has to leave to prepare a place for His children for eternity. He describes this place as His Father’s House. In other words, Jesus describes the fact that as the Eternal Carpenter, Jesus has to leave and do a job. He is building a room for every Christian in Heaven.
“In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you. If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come back and receive you to Myself, so that where I am you may be also.” (John 14:2–3, HCSB)
Whether at the Rapture or death, one will reunite with Jesus. In the meantime, while we are still here on Earth, Jesus promised God the Father that He would take care of His children. Jesus considered that part of His mission.
“This is the will of Him who sent Me: that I should lose none of those He has given Me but should raise them up on the last day. For this is the will of My Father: that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”” (John 6:39–40, HCSB)
So until the resurrection, Jesus was given the task of taking care of God’s children – you and I who “love Jesus and obey His commands.” But how is going to take care of them if He ascends back to Heaven?
Jesus promised here that He would not leave His children as orphans. He did not build a huge group home here on Earth. Instead, He entrusted each and every Christian to a Heavenly Guardian. That Heavenly Guardian is the Holy Spirit.
4. The Holy Spirit is my companion (John 14:19-21)
Jesus reminds us that the key to keeping Jesus’ commands is love. Love is a better motivator to keep commands than anything else. Jesus knows this. He also knows how hard it is for people to love. So Jesus provides the Holy Spirit to comfort, connect, be my caregiver, and yet He is also my companion.
Just like in a marriage, there are two partners – the husband and wife. They build life together in a relationship. Notice how many times the word “love” is used in these three verses. Jesus describes the intimate connection that He has with God the Father. Jesus shares that the same intimate connection between Jesus and God the Father can be had with each and every Christian.
How am I going to experience the love of God? The Bible shows that God will show His love to you in a personal experience. How is that possible if Jesus is gone? How can I a personal relationship with God if Jesus paid my sin debt, but God the Father is in Heaven? The way that I can have a personal relationship is through the work of the Holy Spirit. He will come to me and be my companion.
“The one who has My commands and keeps them is the one who loves Me. And the one who loves Me will be loved by My Father. I also will love him and will reveal Myself to him.”” (John 14:21, HCSB)
The phrase “loved by My Father” and “reveal Myself” refer to the fact that God the Father and Jesus the Son are both involved in that loving relationship with the Christian. But how can that happen? The answer is the Holy Spirit. Both the love of the Father and the presence of Jesus will be given to every Christian by the Holy Spirit. This verse points to the fact that the Holy Spirit will be my companion until Jesus returns. He is not only my caregiver, but He is my companion along the journey.
Love only happens in an intimate relationship and that can only be possible now by the work of the Holy Spirit. We tend to concentrate on the gifts and the fruits of the Holy Spirit – His gifts, as if He hands out abilities for us to accomplish tasks. Yet, the Holy Spirit is not just my taskmaster. While it is true that through the Holy Spirit, I have gifts to do God’s work. By the power of the Holy Spirit, I behave in ways that God wants to see me behave, in loving ways. This is because the Holy Spirit is my companion.
If you look at this passage structurally, one can see a pattern that show that companionship is the central role that the Holy Spirit plays in my life. There three roles before and three roles after this. The theme of loving God by obeying God’s commands is sprinkled throughout this passage. What if the central role of the Holy Spirit is to promote love in my life so that I may obey God?This leads me to the next role the Holy Spirit plays in my life.
5. The Holy Spirit is my coach (John 14:22-26)
At times, the Holy Spirit is my companion, but then there are times when He is my coach. The conversation continues here when Judas (not the traitor) asks a logical question.
“Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, how is it You’re going to reveal Yourself to us and not to the world?”” (John 14:22, HCSB)
The disciples still can’t grasp how Jesus is going to be with them, but then not seen by the world. How Jesus be present and absent at the same time. The dilemma points to the solution that there has to be Someone else involved.
Jesus reminds the disciples again that they will be reunited with Jesus the Son and God the Father in Heaven.
“Jesus answered, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word. My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.” (John 14:23, HCSB)
Remember that Home is the place that Jesus is building until He returns. But in the meantime, how is Jesus going to keep teaching His children to love and obey and Him? He gives the Holy Spirit the role of a coach.
““I have spoken these things to you while I remain with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit —the Father will send Him in My name—will teach you all things and remind you of everything I have told you.” (John 14:25–26, HCSB)
In the previous verse John 14:16, Jesus described the Holy Spirit as a Counselor, the emphasis was on location. He was always to be near them. Here, the role of counselor expands to be someone who coaches the Christian.
The coach of the team helps each individual team member to be ready for the game. He teaches them and shows them how to be the best player in a team. Here, Jesus reminds His disciples that the Holy Spirit will teach them. He will “remind” them and “teach” them everything Jesus has told them. Like a coach, the Holy Spirit leads God’s children to follow God’s playbook. Jesus used that playbook and then left it with the Holy Spirit. We are out there now playing in the game of life. The Holy Spirit reminds us how to live in relationship with others.
6. The Holy Spirit is my champion (John 14:27-29)
These verses talk about peace. But why am I using the word champion? Because the opposite of peace and the Holy Spirit helps me become a champion over my fears. The Holy Spirit gives me peace.
““Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Your heart must not be troubled or fearful.” (John 14:27, HCSB)
Jesus is addressing the fear that the disciples have, and the fear that you and may have. Because things in this world can make us very anxious. Jesus is leaving us with peace. It’s a peace that permanent. Jesus knows that our hearts will be troubled. They were troubled earlier when Jesus assured them of providing a place for them in Heaven.
““Your heart must not be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if not, I would have told you. I am going away to prepare a place for you.” (John 14:1–2, HCSB)
Now, He gives them peace over their troubles here on Earth.
“You have heard Me tell you, ‘I am going away and I am coming to you.’ If you loved Me, you would have rejoiced that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I. I have told you now before it happens so that when it does happen you may believe.” (John 14:28–29, HCSB)
The Holy Spirit is going to champion the cause of giving each Christian joy in our relationship with God the Father. During this entire exchange, Jesus has connected the love of a Christian with a reaction. Earlier, it is obedience. Here it is joy. The joy is derived from the power of God. God is greater than Jesus. God is Jesus’ champion. We know this because it will be God who raises Jesus from the dead.
Jesus is going to provide a champion who is greater than us. That champion is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will help me be a Champion Christian in this life, between when Jesus is going away and coming back. There is one last problem. The power of the Devil.
Jesus didn’t eliminate the presence of sin and the Devil in our lives. That will be accomplished later. In the meantime, we have to overcome the devil’s temptations. His primary temptation I believe is fear. I think this is the reason that fear is connected to the power of the devil in these verses. I think this is the reason that Jesus says that the Devil has no power over Him. Jesus is clearly connecting the power over fear and the Devil which require the same help. That help comes from the Holy Spirit. He fulfills another role in our lives that gives the Christian power over the Devil.
7. The Holy Spirit is my commander (John 14:30)
I need to be reminded that in order to overcome the Devil, I have to let the Holy Spirit command my life.
The President is the Commander-in-Chief is the elected civilian commander of the armed forces. The Secretary of Defense is appointed civilian commander of the armed forces. The Joint Chiefs of Staff is the highest ranking commander of all of the armies. In the same way, there is a chain of command in the Holy Trinity. God the Father is the Eternal Commander-in-Chief. He has appointed Jesus His Son to be the commander of all of the heavenly armies. Both God the Father and Jesus the Son have left the Holy Spirit to command God’s people.
Remember that when Jesus was on Earth even let the Holy Spirit direct Him.
“Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the Devil.” (Matthew 4:1, HCSB)
Jesus knew that He was going to encounter the Devil. Yet, He didn’t let that stop Him. He followed the leadership of the Holy Spirit. If Jesus was willing to let the Holy Spirit lead Him, you and I should be just as willing to let the Holy Spirit lead us in life. Remember that if the Holy Spirit can command us, He has power over the Devil.
“I will not talk with you much longer, because the ruler of the world is coming. He has no power over Me.” (John 14:30, HCSB)
If the Devil has no power over Jesus, then the Devil has no power over you.
Jesus is saying them right before He goes to the cross. He is fully aware of the power that the Devil is going to use against Him. Yet, Jesus trusts in the Holy Spirit. This is why Jesus is leaving. Jesus will fulfill role in God’s plan and leave so that God can use the Holy Spirit to fulfill His roles in the lives of every Christian.
“On the contrary, I am going away so that the world may know that I love the Father. Just as the Father commanded Me, so I do. “Get up; let’s leave this place.” (John 14:31, HCSB)
In this final verse, we are reminded that just as God the Father commanded Jesus, the Holy Spirit commands me. Jesus submits to the Father’s role of commanding. This should teach Christians to submit to the Holy Spirit. I can submit to the Holy Spirit because He is my comforter, connection, caregiver, companion, coach, and champion. If the Holy Spirit fulfills all these roles, then I should naturally want Him to be my commander.
Jesus knows that the Holy Spirit will fulfill all of these roles in His life. We should be just as confident today as Christians to listen to the Holy Spirit so that we may love Jesus better by obeying what He tells us to do.