Summary: The ministry of the Holy Spirit, especially in the heart of the unbeliever.
The Holy Guest
1 "All this I have told you so that you will not go astray.
2 They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, a time is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God.
3 They will do such things because they have not known the Father or me.
4 I have told you this, so that when the time comes you will remember that I warned you. I did not tell you this at first because I was with you.
5 "Now I am going to him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, ’Where are you going?’
6 Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief.
7 But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
8 When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment:
9 in regard to sin, because men do not believe in me;
10 in regard to righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer;
11 and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.
12 "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear.
13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.
14 He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.
15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.
16 "In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me."
Do you believe in ghosts? I do. The Bible tells us that there is a spirit world, composed of good and evil spirits. The good spirits are called “angels,” and the evil spirits are called “demons” or “devils.”
In the KJV of the Bible we find the Third Person of the Trinity referred to as the “Holy Ghost.” Perhaps those translators were right after all, for the word “Ghost” in the old Saxon was the same as the word for “Guest.” So it can certainly be said that the Holy Spirit is the “Guest of the Soul” or, “The Holy Guest.”
This is Pentecost Sunday—the day marking the time when the Holy Spirit came upon the early believers in Jerusalem. He has come into the world and visits every heart—seeking admittance. He may come TO the soul without being asked, but He will not come IN unless He is invited to do so. He may be unwelcome. He may be rejected. But He comes. He’s in the world like Noah’s dove, looking for an abiding place. He forces Himself upon no one. He waits for the open door and the invitation to enter.
He comes gently. He comes in love. He comes on a mission of good will, mercy, peace, and joy. He comes to exalt Jesus.
There are some things the Spirit of God is not.
He is not an “it.” He is a distinct Personality. He can be lied to and grieved.
He is not a substitute for God—He IS God!
He is not imaginary, but real and relevant. We should not think that because something is invisible, it is therefore unimportant or weak. A case in point is air:
- holds giant airplanes aloft
- can snap a tree in two
- can demolish a whole city
- under pressure it can bring a semi to a screeching halt, break up concrete, loosen or tighten lug nuts on your car’s wheels.
Air—that’s all, just air. You can’t feel it or see it or smell it—unless it’s polluted. But it keeps you alive every minute. If you go without it for 5 minutes, you’ll be brain-damaged or dead. We just can’t live without it.
The Bible calls the Holy Spirit “the breath of God.” Wind is used as a symbol for the Spirit. Just because you can’t see the Holy Spirit, don’t assume that He is not present or real.
As a matter of fact, He is here right now.
The Spirit is not passive, but active and involved. His work on earth is basically among two classifications of people: Christians and non-Christians.
Verses 13-15 of our passage describe His work among Christians. He guides us into all truth. He matures us, He sanctifies us wholly. He comforts us. He gives us hope. He glorifies Christ—not Himself.