16 “I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away. They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. And they will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor me. But I have said these things to you, that when their hour comes you may remember that I told them to you.
The Work of the Holy Spirit
“I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
“I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.
Your Sorrow Will Turn into Joy
“A little while, and you will see me no longer; and again a little while, and you will see me.” So some of his disciples said to one another, “What is this that he says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see me, and again a little while, and you will see me’; and, ‘because I am going to the Father’?” So they were saying, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We do not know what he is talking about.” Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them, “Is this what you are asking yourselves, what I meant by saying, ‘A little while and you will not see me, and again a little while and you will see me’? Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy. When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world. So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. In that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.
I Have Overcome the World
“I have said these things to you in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures of speech but will tell you plainly about the Father. In that day you will ask in my name, and I do not say to you that I will ask the Father on your behalf; for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. I came from the Father and have come into the world, and now I am leaving the world and going to the Father.”
His disciples said, “Ah, now you are speaking plainly and not using figurative speech! Now we know that you know all things and do not need anyone to question you; this is why we believe that you came from God.” Jesus answered them, “Do you now believe? Behold, the hour is coming, indeed it has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home, and will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone, for the Father is with me. I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
John 16 Commentary
by Hank Workman
“But 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. He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you.” -John 16:13-14
We search for answers. We look for meaning behind circumstances that bombard us. We pursue the questions that riddle our thoughts and keep us up at night. Sometimes these moments are so overwhelming, are they not? This is particularly true when we are so bombarded with hopelessness of some situation or have prayed and prayed for an answer only to still be left with not one iota or shred of any resolve in the answer we seek.
It’s tough. Believe me, it is so tough and becomes absolutely discouraging and overwhelming.
And I pause and think about these verses of the Holy Spirit Jesus spoke of. I think about these promises He gave that the Holy Spirit knows the will of God, has heard from the Father as to the purpose and will of his children. He leads us into the absolute Truth of God and purposes of His will, even though things are not necessarily clear as we would like them.
To me, this once again goes back to our abiding in Jesus. For the answers we seek, although they are not always revealed in our timing as we know, we must be connected to the Vine. I truly believe for the Truth of our lives to be revealed in powerful ways we must continue to invest ourselves in Jesus and stay connected. As we know, when discouragement comes our way, those situations that simply seem to be never-ending – it’s easy to let such diligence in our relationship with Him slip.
As the Holy Spirit guides us in all Truth – I wonder how many of our own struggles and unanswered questions are hanging out there because we have not stayed connected? I wonder how much of the wisdom and strength and yes, the knowledge Jesus spoke of in regards to the Holy Spirit are just waiting to be revealed if we would seek His Truth and not the perceived ‘truth’ of some situation we may have.
John 16 Commentary
by Brad Boyles
John 16:2-3 HCSB They will ban you from the synagogues. In fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering service to God. 3 They will do these things because they haven’t known the Father or Me.
Today, most Jews in Israel are open to free speech. I have read commentaries from Messianic Jews who report that free speech is valued in Jewish communities. But, it is still true that today you may be banned from the synagogues and prohibited from returning for sharing your faith in Jesus.
Paul is a primary example of Jesus’ words. He thought he was serving God by dragging Christians from their homes and having them killed. However, in his case, the persecutor became the persecuted, and the difference seen in Paul is exactly what Jesus describes in verse 3. Saul didn’t know God. Paul did.
This should force us to pause and consider how many today throw around the name of God but have not submitted to Jesus. In some circles, proclaiming your belief in God is enough to warrant a title of “believer.” I have even heard personal testimonies from so-called Christians that never mention the name of Jesus. I am not the judge of who is saved and who isn’t, but Jesus does give us this knowledge for a reason.
Just because someone is a believer in God doesn’t mean that person actually knows God.
With this one verse, Jesus distinguishes the critical difference between believing and knowing. He then goes on to predict how we will recognize those who do know God.
John 16:13-14 HCSB When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak whatever He hears. He will also declare to you what is to come. 14 He will glorify Me, because He will take from what is Mine and declare it to you.
The Holy Spirit fills believers and then guides them in all truth. This means that if a bunch of Spirit-filled people gather together, He will lead them in the same way, at the same time, and in the same direction. He will lead them to being more like Jesus. They won’t all look the same, but they will have the same mind, the same heart, and the same desires. In contrast, those who do not know God will not have the Holy Spirit, and their mind and heart and desires will look much different!
The truth Jesus is communicating is spiritual discernment and it is critical for the church moving forward!