Summary: Jesus promised that the Holy Spirit would be our helper and be "in" us... but what does that mean? What difference could the presence of God's Spirit make in our lives?
OPEN: I read a true story about a woman was pregnant with her first child, and her 4-year-old nephew came over to visit. She allowed him to place his hand on her belly and feel the baby kick. And he had this puzzled look on his face and said, "How’s that baby gonna get out of there?" She wanted to keep it simple so she said, "Well, the doctor will help." And his eyes got really big and he said, "You mean you've got a doctor in there, too?"
NOOO… there wasn’t a doctor inside that woman. But the intriguing thing about our text today is that Jesus said we have something even more impressive than a doctor inside of us. Jesus told His disciples “I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, … You know him, for he dwells with you and will be IN YOU.” John 14:16-17
You see, Jesus was talking about the Holy Spirit, and it’s a fundamental teaching in Scripture that the Spirit dwells inside of each believer.
God promised that back in Ezekiel 36:27 “I will put my Spirit WITHIN you…”
And in I Corinthians 6:19 we’re told “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit WITHIN you, whom you have from God? ...”
And Paul wrote to Timothy in 2 Timothy 1:14 “Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you—guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who LIVES IN US.”
In fact, you can’t belong to Jesus without having His Spirit inside of you. Romans 8:9 “… Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.”
Now, what’s interesting is that Jesus tells us WHY that Spirit is going to be within us. And one of the reasons Jesus gives is found in John 14:26 “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”
Now who’s Jesus talking TO here? He’s talking to His 12 closest disciples – the men who later became the Apostles. And because Jesus is addressing this to them there are those who might say that THIS promise doesn’t apply to us.
And for the most part they're right.
The Apostles were the men responsible for establishing and strengthening the church. They were the ones congregations turned to for guidance and instruction. And they were the principle authors of much of our New Testament.
For example, right after the church began, we’re told that the early Christians “… devoted themselves to the APOSTLES’ TEACHING and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.” Acts 2:42
It was their teachings that explained WHO Jesus was, and WHAT we are to believe as Christians.
In addition, the Apostles could do things that other Christians couldn’t do. Paul wrote that “The signs of a TRUE APOSTLE were performed among you with utmost patience, with signs and wonders and mighty works.” 2 Corinthians 12:12
Other Christians apparently couldn’t do that stuff! But the Apostles needed the spirit inside them to do these things. You see, even though we have the same spirit INSIDE of us that they did THOSE few men (Apostles) were unique and we won’t see anything like them ever again, because they had a distinctive ONE TIME ONLY ministry.
I don’t care how faithful the Christian, or how powerful the preacher, or how effective the missionary - no one alive today can compare to those early Apostles.
But there are churches out there who don’t teach that. There are churches where preachers & teachers regard their own teachings and prophecies as being as infallible as those of the early Apostles.
ILLUS: I visited a church in Texas one time and was shocked to see a beautiful poster in the foyer that was a “Prophecy” from that church’s preacher. The preacher had boldly set it out where everyone could see it because he believed that HIS teachings were as powerful/infallible as those of the early Apostles.
ILLUS: Just recently, on November 3rd, Pat Robertson made a prophecy on “The 700 Club.” He said: “First of all, I want to say without question, Trump is going to win the election.” And “The Lord told me the president is going to be re-elected”
Jeremiah Johnson (founder of Jeremiah Johnson Ministries) prophesied: “Donald J. Trump would be re-elected.”
Katt Kerr (president of One Quest International) declared: “There is no doubt whatsoever. (Trump) will win. That’s God’s plan,” and “The rocks are about to move and Trump will be president no matter what you hear. He will sit in office for four more years and God will have His way in this country.” (https://www.hollandsentinel.com/opinion/20201215/ray-buursma-beware-of-false-prophets/)