The Promised Advocate

The Promised Advocate
March 05
00:00 2015

Lesson Scripture: John 14:15-26

By the end of this Lesson, we should:

• Understand the importance of the Holy Spirit

• Recognize the Spirit’s power

• Live so that God gets the glory out of our lives

Background: Jesus’ earthly ministry was coming to an end. For three years, He taught his disciples and many others the correct interpretation of the Mosaic Law and the Prophets. In His inaugural sermon, the Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 5-7) He declared that He came not to abolish the Law or the Prophets but to fulfill them. See Matthew 5:17.

The Jewish hierarchy over time distorted Scripture. They concentrated on personal piety and ritual. Jesus came to correct that error and to model Godly love for humanity. He knew that the opposition would be great but in order to redeem, He had to stand for God and to give His life.

The disciples and the others witnessed His miracles; heard His teachings; and noticed His example. Preparing them for His departure was almost finished. Jesus told them several times that He had to leave. They really didn’t understand. Would we?

The plot was in place as He shared His final Passover with them. Chapter 13 recorded the epitome of servanthood. Instead of acting “kingly”, Jesus became the humble servant. Peter, you know the impetuous one, refused the gesture. After Jesus responded, Peter wanted to be washed all over! Jesus then stated that he would deny Him three times. Judas Iscariot left the room and the teaching continued (chapter 14-16).

Lesson: Jesus, the Lamb of God is about to face His ultimate sacrifice. He assures them that He and God have not left them alone. A Comforter (Counselor) will be sent to them. This Presence will be an advocate, an encourager, a guide and a witness in the days ahead. In a patriarchal society (father led), the two groups of people at the bottom are the orphans and widows because they have no one to speak for and protect them. Very often they become slaves (NOT like America) in order to survive. Jesus assures them that this will not be their fate; the Holy Spirit will come.

Our ancestors call the Comforter the Holy Ghost! Those who don’t believe will ignore the Spirit of Truth because they can’t see or know Him. Judas, not Iscariot raises a valid question. Obedience (vs. 21) here doesn’t refer to memorizing some words or following a ritual. It means to live love in all walks of life. Living love can’t be accomplished on one’s intentions. The Spirit will be there to empower, to guide, and to protect from day to day. Because Jesus gave His life; laid in the tomb for three days; and got up with all power in His hands, believers recognize that they are not alone. When the disciples hear this, they continue to lack understanding.

Life’s Application: Many of us grew up in Sunday school and worship. We memorized a lot of Scriptures and stories. We were baptized with a lot of sermons as well. Like the disciples, knowledge and understanding came later. By and by those words and actions started to make sense. Maturity began to set in and our perspective on life radically changed. We now know the “proper place” for things and recognize the importance of humanity.

Jesus promised the coming of the Spirit to guide, protect, empower, comfort and correct our thinking and actions. We are not orphans; we have an Advocate. Thanks be to God!!

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