Summary: The second in the X-files series this looks at the person of the Holy Spirit
It wouldn¡¦t be long and he knew it. For three years he had taught throughout Israel, for three years he had healed the sick and fed the hungry. For three years he pointed people to the Kingdom of God, but the time was coming, it wouldn¡¦t be long now and he knew it. The end was in sight, it was time for the chapter to close on his earthly ministry. But how would he explain it to his friends? How would he explain that he was leaving? Would they feel deserted, betrayed? Would they be able to see that there was a much bigger plan a much longer story then they could presently see?
Shera read the story from John chapter 16. It was just hours before the arrest of Christ, the group had eaten what we call ¡§the Last Supper¡¨, had posed for the picture and now Jesus was explaining the events that were about to happen. Trying I¡¦m sure to ease their fears, to let them know that whatever happened that he was still in control and that it was all part of the plan. I¡¦m not sure that he was all that successful.
Most of all he wanted them to know that he wasn¡¦t leaving them alone. Really isn¡¦t that a fear that we all have, the fear of being deserted, being left to our own devices. Lord Byron made this statement concerning growing old: ¡§What is the worst of woes that wait on age? What stamps the wrinkle deeper on the brow? To view each loved one blotted from life’s page, And be alone on earth, as I am now.¡¨
And so it was almost a ¡§I have bad news and I have good news statement.¡¨ Jesus told them that the time had come that he had been telling them about, when he would have to die, but in the same breath he assured them ¡§You Are Not Alone¡¨
Countless episodes of the X-files deal with the concept of our not being alone, but Scully and Mulder are convinced that what they are looking for are aliens. What we should be looking for is the Holy Spirit.
The first thing I want to look at this morning is: The Promise of the Holy Spirit Throughout the gospels and into the book of Acts we see Jesus promising the disciples that they won¡¦t be left alone. Often we think that the Holy Spirit was a last minute thought by Christ, ¡§Oh by the way. I¡¦m leaving, but don¡¦t be upset, tell you what I¡¦ll leave the Holy Spirit for you.¡¨ But that isn¡¦t the case at all. The Holy Spirit isn¡¦t an after thought he was part of the original plan. Early in Christ ministry right after Jesus taught the disciples the Lord¡¦s Prayer he makes this comment Luke 11:13 If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.¡¨
As a matter of fact before Jesus began his earthly ministry he was announced by his cousin John who said Matthew 3:11 ¡§I baptize with water those who turn from their sins and turn to God. But someone is coming soon who is far greater than I am¡Xso much greater that I am not even worthy to be his slave. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.
And so it should have come as no surprise when hours before his arrest Jesus told his apostles in John 14:15-17 ¡§If you love me, obey my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counsellor, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world at large cannot receive him, because it isn¡¦t looking for him and doesn¡¦t recognize him. But you do, because he lives with you now and later will be in you.
Person of the Holy Spirit. A. W. Tozer wrote this in his book The Counsellor ¡§Spell this out in capital letters: THE HOLY SPIRIT IS A PERSON. He is not enthusiasm. He is not courage. He is not energy. He is not the personification of all good qualities, like Jack Frost is the personification of cold weather. Actually, the Holy Spirit is not the personification of anything. He is a Person, the same as you are a person, but not material substance. He has individuality. He is one being and not another. He has will and intelligence. He has hearing. He has knowledge and sympathy and ability to love and see and think. He can hear, speak, desire, grieve and rejoice. He is a Person.¡¨
If we were to do a pop quiz right now and ask you who or what is the Holy Spirit I wonder what we would get for answers? ¡§The Third Person of the Trinity¡¨ ¡§The Comforter¡¨ ¡§The Counsellor¡¨ ¡§Guide¡¨ ¡§Teacher¡¨. How about this: He is God.