Leading Us Into Truth: John 16:5-15

Focus Passage: John 16:5-15 (NCV)

Now I am going back to the One who sent me. But none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Your hearts are filled with sadness because I have told you these things. But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go away. When I go away, I will send the Helper to you. If I do not go away, the Helper will not come. When the Helper comes, he will prove to the people of the world the truth about sin, about being right with God, and about judgment. He will prove to them that sin is not believing in me. 10 He will prove to them that being right with God comes from my going to the Father and not being seen anymore. 11 And the Helper will prove to them that judgment happened when the ruler of this world was judged.

12 “I have many more things to say to you, but they are too much for you now. 13 But when the Spirit of truth comes, he will lead you into all truth. He will not speak his own words, but he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is to come. 14 The Spirit of truth will bring glory to me, because he will take what I have to say and tell it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine. That is why I said that the Spirit will take what I have to say and tell it to you.

Read John 16:5-15 in context and/or in other translations on BibleGateway.com!

If you ever thought Jesus wanted to say more to the disciples, John tells us that on the night He was betrayed, during a conversation Jesus has with His remaining followers a few hours before He would be arrested, Jesus says this exact thing. But instead of leaving His followers hanging, Jesus offers them hope about being able to learn this truth in the future. The time for them to know was not before the events, because the disciples were not ready for the truth.

In this conversation, immediately following His description of what the Holy Spirit’s role, Jesus tells them, “I have many more things to say to you, but they are too much for you now.” (v. 12)

It seems as though Jesus wants to open up completely with the disciples and share with them all of what He knows, but Jesus also knows that most of what He wants to share would not be understood by the disciples. The information would be too much for them on the front end of the weekend. But Jesus doesn’t leave them hanging without a promise or hope for learning the truth. Instead, He describes a way for them to learn the truth He wanted to tell them in person but couldn’t, and this way is through the Helper – one of the names given to the Holy Spirit.

In the next few verses, Jesus describes what the Holy Spirit would do for them. Jesus has already described the overall mission of the Holy Spirit, and now He narrows the focus and shares what the Holy Spirit will do for each of His followers. Jesus tells them, “But when the Spirit of truth comes, he will lead you into all truth. He will not speak his own words, but he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is to come. The Spirit of truth will bring glory to me, because he will take what I have to say and tell it to you. All that the Father has is mine. That is why I said that the Spirit will take what I have to say and tell it to you.” (v. 13-15)

In this set of verses, Jesus describes how the Holy Spirit will pick up where He left off and continue teaching the disciples. Just like Jesus walked through life with the Holy Spirit leading Him, Jesus describes that His followers should walk through life with this mindset as well.

Not only do we see the truth about God sending the Holy Spirit to help His followers in these verses, but we also can see a beautiful picture of how each member of the Godhead submits to the others. The Holy Spirit submits to God the Father and Jesus by only speaking what He hears. God the Father submits by giving everything He has to the Son. And Jesus has submitted through simply being present in this place as a human. Each member of the Godhead fulfills their role through submitting to the other members.

When the Holy Spirit comes into our lives, He will lead us into all truth. This truth will affect our knowledge, our character, and our actions. The truth the Holy Spirit will reveal to us is life transforming. This truth will bring glory to Jesus and God the Father, and this truth is only possible because of what Jesus accomplished for us on the cross!

This thought was inspired by studying the Walking With Jesus "Reflective Bible Study" package. To discover insights like this in your own study time, click here and give Reflective Bible Study a try today!

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