My Bible passage for today came from Jesus’ farewell discourse in John’s gospel (14:12-21), with the help of NT Wright’s ‘John for Everyone’. Three great promises stood out.
1. “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” (v13-14). This is a promise that if we can ask for something in Jesus’ name, then he will do it. Of course, we can’t just ask for anything in Jesus’ name – only those things that are representative of him and in keeping with his character and mission. But once we’ve understood that, the ‘anything’ is still rather powerful!
2. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth.” (v16-17) Jesus has not left us alone but has left us with the Holy Spirit. The word advocate (NIV) is often translates as helper or comforter. All three are correct. The Spirit assists, guides and is alongside us, encourages and stands up on out behalf for the gospel – He gives us the words to say.
3. “Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.” (v19-20). Jesus is referring to his death and resurrection – the world sill not see him anymore…. But because of the resurrection and the giving of the Spirit those who come to him can still see him at work, active in the world and alongside us. In this way, Christian’s participate in the relationships of God found in the Trinity. We can know God’s presence. The future heavenly resurrection life has begun.
So, my questions to apply to this week are, what, in Jesus’ name, can we ask him for? This will likely be something to further God’s mission. How can we actively seek out the Holy Spirit and know his as comforter, advocate, helper? Do we know we are participating in the Trinity?