Audio version at: https://youtu.be/60GM6M4zDQw
Prepare to Listen. In your silence, offer this prayer: You desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
Prayerfully Read John 16:4b-11
‘I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. 5But now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, “Where are you going?” 6But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. 7Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 8And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgement: 9about sin, because they do not believe in me; 10about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer; 11about judgement, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.’
As sorrow filled the disciples’ hearts, Jesus continued talking about his departure. “I tell you the truth,” he said. I doubt it was a truth the disciples wanted to hear, that Jesus leaving them was to their advantage because the Advocate, the Holy Spirit would come. Jesus would send him. They couldn’t have understood. It was a brand new truth to them. Not only that, the Spirit’s task wouldn’t be to make them feel better, but to “prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgement.” Jesus’ explanation makes it clear that he was talking about himself. The Spirit would show that Jesus is right, and the world is wrong, that sin isn’t certain immoral acts defined by religious leaders or political parties to get out votes. Sin is theological—not believing in Jesus, not believing in that way that makes us live Jesus-like in the world.
This was a hard truth because the world included them, and now also includes us. Like those early disciples, we too get Jesus wrong and need to submit to the Spirit and hear where we’ve gone wrong so that we can change and hear, I mean really hear, the truth Jesus speaks.
What truths about Jesus, yourself, the way you live are you seeing in this journey with John’s Gospel?
Respond to Jesus
Lord Jesus, help me to hear your truth so that I believe in you more deeply, in the way that it makes me live more like you today. Amen.
Go live obediently in the world. Be attuned to Jesus’ truth revealed through the Spirit.
Reflection on Scripture has been a constant in my life ever since I can remember. Reflecting on Jesus in the Gospels has become a necessity to get Jesus right. Join me in reading John to see Jesus more clearly this Lent.