Ewald Schmidt  

“… but now I am going to him who sent me. None of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Rather, you are filled with grief because I have said these things. But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because people do not believe in me; about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned.” John 16:5-11, NIV
These words of Jesus were spoken on the eve before the crucifixion. His earthly ministry was nearing its conclusion. Afterwards, he had to go through the toughest challenge – to accept to die on the cross for all mankind. He would rise again and after 40 days of ministry, the ascension would follow. The disciples would be grieving the loss of his immediate presence.
Jesus taught us that it is for our good that he is going away. He would be rising to take up his rightful place at the right-hand side of his Father’s throne. From there, he will continue to minister through his intercession for all believers, as Paul teaches us in Romans 8:34.
God the Holy Spirit, our Advocate, came on the Day of Pentecost to each believer. He came to live in us and to lead us in the truth. Today’s verse teaches us about three works of the Holy Spirit in this world.
Firstly, he proves the world wrong about sin. By nature, we tend to think that we do not need a Saviour. We think that we are good enough by ourselves; God should just accept us as we are into heaven. But when the Holy Spirit works in our lives, our eyes are opened to the tragic cost of sin. We discover that we do not have the ability to atone for our sin; we cannot save ourselves. We really need a Saviour.
Secondly, the Holy Spirit teaches us about righteousness. We are led to believe in Christ as our Saviour and accept his offering on the cross for the atonement of our sin. Through belief in him, the righteousness with God is restored. Through belief in Christ, we are made right with God.
Thirdly, he teaches us about the judgement of sin. There is a day of reckoning coming. We need to remember what Jesus taught in John 3:17. He did not come to judge this world, but to save it. This is the time of grace. However, the time of grace is also passing. One day, every person will stand before the throne of God. For now, there is still time to cling to the Saviour and be saved. This verse is teaching us that the prince of this world, the evil one, already stands condemned. He will get his due for all the tears and sadness he has caused. For us, the Holy Spirit brings encouragement of the good news of a new life in Christ, of salvation for us who believe in him.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for interceding for me at the throne of our Father. Thank you for the person of the Holy Spirit, who teaches me the truth and leads me on the path of righteousness. Holy Spirit, come and guide me, recreate me exactly like you want me to be. Amen.