Tom: We’re continuing with the gospel. We are currently in the Gospel of John, we are in chapter 14, and Dave, we’re going to pick up with verse 16. But first, if you are a first-time listener, the idea of this program—it’s called Search the Scriptures Daily—it’s taken from Acts:17:11, and Dave has said quite a few things on this program, and I have mentioned a few things as well, and we encourage our listeners, particularly when it comes to the Bible, not to just take everything that we say as the truth. We hope we are speaking the truth, but we encourage our listeners to check us out according to the Scriptures. That’s got to be our standard, or our base of reference, and if you’ve not read the Bible before, we have another encouragement, and that is, get after it and begin with—our recommendation is to begin with the Gospel of John, which we have been going through for months and months, Dave. And, why the Gospel of John?
Dave: I think it explains more than the other Gospels—my opinion. Now, it doesn’t include some of the things that are in other Gospels, but I think the picture of man’s sinfulness and the holiness of God and why Christ had to come to redeem us, and how this would come about—I think it is more thoroughly explained in this Gospel than in the others. Somebody says, “Well, why didn’t the other ones explain it?” Well, these are four Gospels, giving us four pictures…
Tom: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
Dave: They don’t just repeat one another. But John’s gospel is rather unique. It’s not what we call a synoptic gospel; the other three are synoptic gospels.
Tom: Which means?
Dave: They tell you how this thing happened, you know, in an orderly fashion, beginning with His birth and so forth—but not in detail, so therefore, it’s a synopsis of the story of Jesus. But this is more doctrinal, this is more teaching, more explanation of who Jesus really is.
Tom: And certainly the gospel, what you must believe to be saved. Well, let’s pick up with verse 16. This is John:14:16. This is Jesus speaking: “And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
Dave: Powerful verses there, Tom.
Tom: The Comforter.
Dave: The Holy Spirit, of course, also called the Spirit of truth. But Jesus is telling them He is going away, and they don’t know where He is going. He says, “Well, I am the way, and I am going to prepare a place for you. I’m going to come again, but in the meantime, I’ll be away, and I’m not going to leave you comfortless; I won’t leave you orphans; I won’t leave you on your own; I’m going to pray the Father and he will give you another Comforter.”
Tom: Dave, now this is new, this is something unique; it has not taken place before in the history of man, although the Holy Spirit certainly is not a Person who is new, but never previous to what Jesus is referring to here—never was the Holy Spirit resident within individuals, although He came upon David, and David cried: “Take not thy Holy Spirit from me,” but this is new.
Dave: Yeah, Jesus mentioned it in John:7:37, where He said, “In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink; and out of his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.” And then John, the narrator, comments and he says, “This spake he of the Holy Spirit, which they that believed on him should receive, for he Holy Ghost, the Holy Spirit, was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified.” So, you’re explaining here, this is something new—it had never happened before. Well, you say the Holy Spirit wasn’t given, and you mentioned that He did come upon the prophets in the Old Testament, but He could leave them as well. But on the Day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit descended and indwelt the believers, those who are in the body of Christ, who have their faith and trust in Christ, and He will never leave us nor forsake us.
So, He is sending the Spirit of truth. We need the Spirit of truth; we need to understand the truth. Jesus said, “You continue in my word, you are my disciples indeed; you will know the truth, the truth will set you free.” And, Tom, that relates to something that—I guess you’ve had the Bobgans on a number of times.
Tom: Right, who have written many books dealing with psychotherapy and its impact upon the church.
Dave: And one of the lies that you get, or, let me try not to be quite so harsh, but it is a lie—but one of the explanations or rationales that you get for Christians going to psychology. I mean, why should I go to Freud or Jung, Rogers, Maslow—all these guys—they’re anti-Christians to a man. But anyway, they say, “Yeah, but they have some truth, and all truth is God’s truth. We’ll pick up some of it here, we’ll pick up some it there.”
No, Jesus said, “Thy Word is truth.” He said, “I am the truth.” But here, look what He says: “The Spirit of truth…” What does He say about the Spirit of truth? “…whom the world cannot receive because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him.”
Now it doesn’t sound to me like Freud, Jung, Rogers…any of these guys—Einstein, Buddha, Confucius, anybody, has this truth, the truth that sets free. “Well yeah, but I mean, we know a lot of truths—ten times ten is a hundred, isn’t that truth?” No, because that’s not revealed by the Holy Spirit that the world cannot receive. If that were, then the world wouldn’t know that ten times ten is a hundred. But you could go to…it’s very clear, “…the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive.” Now what does it say? We will get to that in a couple of chapters. John:16:13, Jesus said, “When he the Spirit of truth is come, he will guide you into all truth.” Now, if the Spirit of truth guides into all truth, and the world cannot receive Him, then don’t tell me that the world has any truth! It may know some facts; it may even know some science.
Tom: Right. And that’s really where the confusion comes in. But the Bible is talking about all things that pertain to life and godliness.
Dave: The truth!
Tom: What did Freud know about that? What did Jung, Maslow, and these guys…?
Dave: No, the truth that sets us free; and this is the Comforter, and “He will lead us into all truth and the world cannot receive him.” Why does it say that? Because you must be born again. As Jesus said way back in the 3rd chapter: “born again by the Spirit, born of the Spirit,” He said. So, when we put our faith and trust in Christ, we believe that He is—what we have been saying—He is God who became a man, He didn’t cease to be God, He will never cease to be man. He is forever the God/man, the one and only. We will be like Him, but we won’t be God/men. We will be like Him when we receive Him, we believe in Him, we believe the gospel that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, was buried, rose again the third day; that he has paid the full penalty for our sins. The Spirit of God enters us, and we are born again; we become children of God.
Paul said, “You are all the children of God…,” but he didn’t stop there: “…through faith in Christ Jesus.” This is in Galatians.
So, only those who put their faith in Christ become the children of God. Otherwise, Jesus said—we read it back there in John 8—pretty harsh, “You are of your father, the devil, and the works of your father you will do.”
So, the world can’t receive Him because the world has not believed the gospel; the world has closed their hearts to Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior—will not accept the fact that they are sinners, will not repent of their sin, will not turn to Christ for salvation. They cannot receive the Spirit of truth, and they will not know the truth until they believe in Christ.
Tom: Dave, the part of the verse that I think about often is again, the Holy Spirit is called the Spirit of truth, and we know that He gave us the Scriptures. “Men were moved by the Holy Spirit; this didn’t come of private interpretation,” as Peter writes. And the way this works, and my understanding is, the Holy Spirit inspired the Scriptures, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God,” and then when we receive the Spirit by faith in Christ, He then illuminates us, He gives us understanding of the Scriptures. Now there are great teachers out there, but they are no more than people who are pointing and underscoring certain things. If we are going to understand something, have true understanding, it has to come by the Spirit of God, who gave us the Scriptures and then gives us the understanding that we need.
Dave:Well, Tom, this verse ends, “You know him, for he dwelleth with you and shall be in you.” Here again, we see that the Holy Spirit had not yet permanently indwelt the believers, but He was with them and guiding them. And by the way, that’s how we know that the Bible is the Bible—not because some church or some council said this is inspired of God, because the same Spirit of God indwells us that indwelt the writers of the Bible, and that’s how we recognize it.