The Work of the Holy Spirit

John 16:8-15 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: Of sin, because they believe not on me; Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and you see me no more; Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged. I have yet many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you. All things that the Father has are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall show it unto you. 

There are 12 offices of the Holy Spirit mentioned in the gospel of John: He is the Begetter of the new birth (3:3, 5); the Life-giver (6:63; Rom. 8:11); the Imparter of power (7:37-39; 14:12-17; Luke 24:49; Acts 1:4-8); the Eternal Comforter or Helper (14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7); the Teacher of Truth (14:17, 26; 15:26; 16:13; 1Jn. 2:20-27); the Reminder of all truth (14:26); the Guide into all truth (16:13); the Revealer of Christ (16:13-15); the Revealer of events (16:13); the Glorifier of Christ (16:14); the Chief Witness for Christ (15:26; 16:13-15; Acts 1:8) and the Convincer of sin, righteousness, and judgment (16:8).

‘Reprove’ is the Greek word elengcho which means to convince, convict, refute, expose, to bring to shame the person reproved. It is found 17 times and translated “convince” (John 8:46; 1Cor. 14:24; Tit. 1:9; Jas. 2:9); “convict” (John 8:9); “tell one’s fault” (Matt. 18:15); “reprove” (Luke 3:19; John 3:20; Eph. 5:11, 13; 2Tim. 4:2); “rebuke” (1Tim. 5:20; Tit. 1:13; 2:15; Heb. 12:5; Jude 1:15; Rev.3:19).

‘The world of sin, because they believe not on me’ World = all men, not only the Jews; Of sin: that unbelief is the foundation of sin and the source of sinfulness that will damn men (Mark 16:16; Luke 8:13; John 3:16-20, 36; 5:24, 38; 8:24; 10:26).

‘Of righteousness’ that man’s righteousness is useless (Isa. 64:6; Rom. 10:3); that Christ is our righteousness (1Cor. 1:30); and that in Him alone and by faith in His atonement can we be righteous (Rom. 3:22-25; 4:1-22; 2Cor. 5:14-21).

Because Jesus went to His Father, and the disciples saw Him no more, the Holy Spirit will them [and all men] in the Truth [Christ = gospel].

‘Of judgment’ that men who believe in Christ will escape the judgment of damnation (John 3:15-20; 5:24); that all who refuse to believe will be damned with satan (Matt. 25:41; John 3:36; Rev. 20:11-15; 21:8).

‘Because the prince of this world is judged’ All unbelievers are assured of judgment because their master has already been defeated on the cross and is helpless to avert his own doom much less theirs (John 12:31; Col. 2:14-17; Rom. 16:20; Rev. 20:10-15).

‘Bear’ the Greek word bastazo which means to carry or bear what is burdensome, not able to understand a matter or receive it calmly (John 19:17; Acts 15:10; Gal. 6:2, 5). It was for the best that Jesus did not tell the disciples that the whole Mosaic system must be set aside; that the sabbath and Jewish festivals will be abolished; that Gentiles must be equal members of the body of Christ; and that many cherished dreams of them about what the Messiah will do when He returns, will not come to pass in their time. He revealed those things to them after the Holy Spirit came (16:13-15).

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