What was the purpose of Jesus’ ministry on earth and how does it relate to us? What can we learn about the Triune God, the Holy Trinity, and our relationship with God?
16 “ These things I have spoken to you so that you may be kept from stumbling. 2 They will make you outcasts from the synagogue, but an hour is coming for everyone who kills you to think that he is offering service to God. 3 These things they will do because they have not known the Father or Me. 4 But these things I have spoken to you, so that when their hour comes, you may remember that I told you of them. These things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you. 5 “But now I am going to Him who sent Me; and none of you asks Me, ‘ Where are You going?’ 6 But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. 7 But 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.
In the first couple verses, Jesus gives a foreshadowing of the things to come. He tells them that His instructions are for their edification, so that when times are tough, they will remember what He said. When all seems lost and bleak, they will have the hope of His promises. God’s faithfulness creates anchors in our life. If we remember His promises, our hope in Him will forever remain and even people who say they are performing the work of the Lord but are not cannot dissuade us from the hope that we have in Christ Jesus.
In verses 3 and 7, we see the three elements of God. Jesus discusses the Triune God. He makes a difference between Himself and the Father and in verse 7 He distinctly mentions the Holy Spirit. When people ask about the trinity in the bible, this is a great reference point, as Jesus not only mentions the three as separate in one, but also their function. The Father sent the Son, the Son came to show us the power of the Spirit and direct us to the glory of the Father and the Spirit came so that He might help us have a father to son relationship with God the Father.
What is He saying in verse 4? Jesus’ ministry was to exemplify living with the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. This is why we see the big show of Him being baptized and receiving the Holy Spirit in the beginning of his ministry. Jesus is explaining they did not need the spirit in them at the time because He was with them. The Spirit was with them while He walked among them. But now that He is going, the Spirit will be sent by Him so that it continues to guide them, just as the spirit guided them through Jesus while He walked the earth. Let us also recognize that Jesus’ ministry was to show us the power we obtain by receiving the Spirit. This is something I have been learning recently. All the miracles Jesus performed were not by Jesus as God, but rather Jesus as man with the indwelling of the Spirit. We see a few times throughout the scriptures how people who have the Spirit in them perform similar things: healing, demon casting, and even raising people from the dead.
Verse 5 stuck out to me. The disciples finally understand and accept where He is going and that He is going. We have seen up until now that they didn’t quite grasp what was going to happen to Jesus and why. Their sorrow is that they will miss His presence, however they will not miss Him for long since the Spirit, which dwells in Him will soon dwell in them. They will once again be one. They currently have a relationship with the Father through Jesus, who has the relationship by the Holy Spirit. However, once they receive the Spirit, they will have direct access to the Father. The Spirit of Christ, which is also the Holy Spirit of God, I sour direct access link to the Father. Unity will be restored with man, just as it was in the beginning.
Where are you in your relationship with God?