Wednesday May 26, 2021
Today’s Scripture: John 14:15-21
15 “If you love me, obey my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. 17 He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you. 18 No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you. 19 Soon the world will no longer see me, but you will see me. Since I live, you also will live. 20 When I am raised to life again, you will know that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.”
There are two important things we learn about the Spirit in this passage from the Gospel of John. We’ll look at the first one today and the second one tomorrow. First, we learn that the Holy Spirit is our Advocate.
The Greek word translated “advocate” in this passage is paraclete. In other places you might see paraclete translated as “comforter” or “encourager”. These are important aspects of the work of the Holy Spirit. For example, when we feel a calmness come over us in the middle of stress or we notice a feeling of comfort in our grief – this is the Holy Spirit. When we feel encouraged even though things might be going in a direction we don’t like – this the is the Holy Spirit.
But the Holy Spirit is also our advocate. What does that mean exactly? Well, it means that the Holy Spirit is God being on our side. “If God is for us, who can be against us,” is the way Paul put it in the letter to the Romans. In other words, it’s the Holy Spirit who has our back. It’s the Holy Spirit who cheers for us, supports us, points us in the right direction. It’s the Holy Spirit who will speak for us – like an advocate in court. It’s the Holy Spirit who is focused on our well-being.
Sometimes we can feel like we are all alone. We can get to thinking that there is no one on our side and that the things we are going through just aren’t important to anyone else. In times like these we can shut down and not want to move forward at all. But the paraclete is made for times like these! We have an advocate – someone in our corner – someone who is ready to guide us in the right direction and fight for us even if we don’t think we can fight for ourselves.
Thank you God for sending us an advocate. Remind us when we feel alone that we have a paraclete on our side at all times.