Summary: All that a Christian is and does is due to the fact that the Holy Spirit brings him to faith and works in him.
May 5, 2002 John 14:15-21
It’s In Your Blood
“If you love me, you will obey what I command. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20 On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21 Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”
There’s a saying that goes, “you can take the boy off the farm, but you can’t take the farm off the boy.” The general idea is that if a boy grows up on a farm, it gets in his blood. He learns to love the outdoors - so much so that even after he moves into town, he still wants to live out in the country. The same idea goes with “purebred” dogs. Some dogs have been bread for specific specialties - sniffing scents, hunting, or protecting. You could literally say, “it’s in their blood.” Could we say the same about humans? Is it that some are just natural politicians, wrestlers, cleaners, or are they trained to be that way? Is it nature or nurture? Often times, it seems to be nature - that’s what they’re made to be.
I. What’s in your blood?
What’s in your blood? Do you have power tools in your blood? Pro wrestling? Football? Soccer? Racing? Finances? Knitting? Religion? Video games? When I mentioned those things, you either did one of two things. Either your ears perked up and said, “yeah!,” or you instead said, “yuck!” There isn’t too much middle ground. When I was about 16 years old I was able to take on a job as a newspaper typist for a local racing newspaper. I thought I might learn something about racing and actually enjoy it. Let me tell you, it was the most boring thing in the world. I can recall sitting in this back office - staring at a wooden wall - typing this stuff that I found to be absolutely tasteless. As much as I tried, racing just wasn’t in my blood. I don’t think it ever will be.
Jesus uses a similar illustration when he talks about people who have the Spirit of truth in today’s text. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. That’s a rather peculiar statement, isn’t it? For God also says in Romans 1:20 that - since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. In one verse it says that God has been clearly seen through creation - and yet today Jesus says that the world neither sees nor knows the Holy Spirit - who is also God. What gives?
Have you ever seen one of those pictures that have a picture within the picture? You have to stare at it for a while - gaze through the picture - before the picture becomes clear. If you don’t look at it in this way, you’ll never get it. In the same way, that’s what the people of this world do. They look at the evidence for God - clearly see it - but then deny that it exists. For years scientists have claimed that the world evolved from single cell organisms into more complex beings. The idea was that a big bang made this one cell which then evolved into many more cells. But come to find out - a single cell organism is actually a very complex thing - with it’s own very complex genetic code that could not come about by an accident. But they were so caught up in the idea that things must have evolved - that the last thing they were every admit is that there is a Designer behind creation. You would think that if anyone would accept God it would be those who study His creation. But their eyes are blind - they can’t see him.
Take another example from the Scriptures. Even after Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, how did those who witnessed this great miracle respond? John 12 says, the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well, 11 for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and putting their faith in him. How blind can you be? It’s almost dumbfounding to us who see the truth so clearly!