Will you take your Bible this morning and turn to the 14th chapter of John? And we come this morning to Part 2 in our message "The Comforter is Coming."
From time to time we read in the papers, or hear about on the radio, or through some other news media, of someone who has been left a great estate, who has been willed a tremendous amount of money. And you're all aware of the little advertisement on television that you always see with about 15 black Cadillac's rolling down the highway, going to the particular funeral of the man who has died and it's the guy who drives the little Volkswagen Bug who gets it all. And we kind of, way in the back of our minds, we kind of think ‑ Well, maybe it could happen to me.
And such a bequest and such a legacy that is left to an individual in circumstances like these is really purely on the basis of the grace of the giver. Some of these legacies are so large that they can hardly be conceived of. The six largest inheritances in the United States, in the history of the United States, involved people whose names may or may not be familiar to you, I'm sure some of them are. The sixth largest belonged to, first of all, John D. Rockefeller Jr. who just by having that name inherited 700 million dollars.
A lady named Mrs. Bruce also inherited 700 million dollars.
Three Mellon children, Paul, Richard and a daughter who later became Mrs. Skioffee, received equally divided a total of almost 2 billion dollars just because they happen to have that name.
And the largest single inheritance belong to J. Paul Getty just because he was who he was, he received 1 billion dollars without ever doing anything.
And they all walked into it at no expense to their own particular life or bank account. Now those are pretty large legacies but all of thoselegacies put together couldn't begin to touch the riches of the legacy that Jesus Christ has left to His own beloved disciples. And you and I are infinitely richer than any of those, or all of them together because that which we possess is not a passing thing. That which we possess because of the grace of God is an eternal inheritance. Our riches are forever and they are adequate to every single situation and to every single need. And all of the rich people in the world are spiritual welfare cases compared to us.
In I Corinthians chapter 2 and verse 9, the Apostle Paul reviewed the great words of Isaiah and he said this: "Eye hath not seen nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him." The inheritance that God has provided for us through Christ is far beyond our wildest imaginations. And Paul prayed in Ephesians chapter 1, in verses 17 and 18, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, that the eyes of your understanding may be enlightened that ye may know what is the hope of His calling and what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.
Paul actually prayed that somehow God would give us the supernatural ability to understand the magnitude of our inheritance. And it's a tragic thing when Christians kind of mope around the world, mealy‑mouthed, appearing to be in abject poverty when, in fact, they are rich beyond imagination. And Paul prays in Ephesians that we will understand how really rich we are. The writer of Hebrews said "We receive the promise of an eternal inheritance." Paul said, "We are joint‑heirs with Jesus Christ." Peter said, "We have an inheritance incorruptible, undefiled that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for us." Now that part of it may be future but there is a present inheritance received the moment we invited Christ into our life.
And in these verses in John chapter 14, we are dealing with five supernatural promises that are part of our inheritance. Now there are more things than just these. These are just five. Five supernatural promises that are the legacy of Christ, at least in these verses, to His disciples, first of all, who are there with Him, the eleven, and then to all those who love Jesus Christ. And may I hasten to add ‑ these are present possessions of every believer.They're not something we're waiting for, they're something we have. They belong to us now.
Now, to put you in perspective a little bit, keep in mind that this is the last night before Jesus' death. In the morning He will be crucified and so He is spending this last night comforting the ... the sorrowing eleven disciples. And He comforts them by giving them these great promises, by showing them what He has for them. He's already given them some fantasticpromises back in verse 2; He told them He was just going up to the Father's house to get them a place ready. In verse 3 He said ‑I'm going to come back and get you Myself. In verse 12 He told them that they would do the things that Jesus had done and even greater things. In verse 13 He said they could ask for anything and they would get it. And He said the same thing again in verse 14, if it was asked in the name of Christ.
So, He's already made some tremendous promises. But added to those promises in the first 14 verses, are these five fantastic supernatural promises that He makes in verses 15 through 27. And you'll remember, and the outline, perhaps, that you have may refresh your memory, He promises them a supernatural Helper, a supernatural life, a supernatural union, a supernatural Teacher and a supernatural peace.
Now in our last study we considered, first of all, to whom these promises are given. And we saw it in verse 15 where it says:"If ye love Me," and it should read "ye will keep My commandments." And we determined from that verse that it is to those who love Jesus Christ, whose love is genuinely evidenced by their obedience, it is to those that Christ gives these promises. These do not belong to unregenerate people. These do not belong to just goody‑goods. These do not belong to super citizens. These do not belong to decent respectable nice neighbors. These belong to people who love Jesus Christ and whose love is indicated by obedience. They are the promises to the true believers. And I told you there is only one test of love that is valid and that is the test of obedience.
Remember how we had seen the disciples indicating their love by their grief? And grief often indicates love, of course it does. Every time I have a funeral I'm reminded of that. I had a funeral just a couple of days ago and you stand there and you watch everybody weeping and you realize that to a degree their love is indicated by their grief. That's not always true, but at least a superficial dimension of love is indicated by grief. But Jesus is saying to them, in effect, I don't want you to indicate your love by grief anymore, but by obedience. So He redirects their love.
And it is to those who indicate the genuineness of their love by their obedience that Christ gives these promises.
Now the first supernatural promise that we saw last week, and just quickly we'll review it, was that Christ promised a supernatural Helper in verses 16 and 17. And that's the greatest legacy that Christ ever left us. Verse 16: "And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter that ye may be ... that He may abide with you forever." Now He said ‑ I'm going to pray to the Father to give you another Comforter.
Now we talked about that last time and we saw that the word Comforter, paraklētŏs, means Helper. That the word another is allŏs and it means exactly like He is ... another of the same identical essence as Christ. So, Christ says I'm going to go away but I'm going to send you somebody through the Father who is exactly like Me. Now, that's a marvelous promise. And He won't come and go as I have done, but He will abide with you ... how long? ... forever ... a marvelous promise.
Then in verse 17 He said, "It's the Spirit of truth." So called because He leads them into truth. "Whom the world cannot receive because it seeth Him not," and of course, the world has no organ to discern the Holy Spirit. We saw that how Paul says to the Corinthians, "The natural man understandeth not the things of God, they're foolishness unto him because they're spiritually discerned." He can't understand them, he has no spiritual capacities. And so, the Spirit will come and He will come to those who love Jesus Christ and He will abide with them forever but the world won't see Him and the world won't comprehend what He's doing.
And remember I told you that Jesus told them that, lest they thing that when the Holy Spirit came everything in the world was going to change and the whole world was going to repent and great revival was going to break out automatically everywhere. Jesus says ‑ they didn't receive Me when I was here, they're not going to receive My equal, the Holy Spirit. They didn't accept the first Comforter; they're not going to accept the second Comforter.
All right, so then He says "Neither knoweth him." They cannot perceive Him. They cannot conceive of Him. "But ye know
Him for He dwelleth with you and," here's this classic statement,
"Shall be ... where? ... in you." Shall be in you ... the Holy Spirit in the church age, in this dispensation, is not just with us, He is in us. And we saw how that the Bible teaches that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit.
So, Christ promised the Holy Spirit, a supernatural Helper who would no longer, as in the Old Testament, just be around and with them but in them. He is in us and in us forever and He is the exact essence of Jesus Christ. He has all the power that Christ has; all the wisdom, all of the grace, all of the attributes that Christ has, the Holy Spirit possesses and He dwells within us. That's a resource of power equal to having Jesus Christ beside you for eternity. Now that's some kind of an inheritance.
Then we saw secondly, that He not only promises a supernatural Helper, but a supernatural life, verse 18. "I will not leave you orphanless, orphanos, I will come to you."
Now here Jesus says ‑ I Myself will return to you. And we talked about the fact that when the Holy Spirit came back into the life of those men on the day of Pentecost and when the Holy Spirit enters into the life of every believer at the moment of salvation, and that's when the Holy Spirit comes, and stays forever, there's no Christian without the Holy Spirit, if a person doesn't have the Holy Spirit he's not a Christian, that's Romans 8:9, "If any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he's none of His," the Spirit came on the day of Pentecost and since then has come at the moment of salvation into the life of every believer and when that Spirit comes, in the coming of the Spirit you also have the coming of Christ. Romans 8 even calls the Holy Spirit the Spirit of Christ. So Christ is saying when the Holy Spirit comes it will be Me coming as well. And so the Holy Spirit and Christ together enter into your life. Christ says ‑ I'm not going to leave you orphanless, I will come. And when the Spirit came, Christ came too.
Verse 19, "Yet a little while and the world seeth Me no more but ye see Me." Now when the Spirit comes and Christ comes back, the world isn't going to know it. The world can't see the Holy Spirit work because they don't have any organ to sense that world. But the believer does. He says You will know Me, youwill see Me. Now how is it that a man can know' God's workings, see the Spirit work? Well, one thing, he has to have to be able to discern it, he has to have spiritual life. If you're alive to God's world you have spiritual life. The average person, the person without Jesus Christ, the natural man is not alive to God. He can't detect when God's working and when God's not working. He doesn't know what the Holy Spirit's doing and ... and what He's not doing. He has no conception of what Christ is doing, he can't sense the ministry of the Spirit, he doesn't see the Spirit move. He has no way to comprehend that, he cannot understand it at all, it doesn't even register on his mind. And the reason is because he can't live in that realm. He's dead to that dimension. In order to sense God you have to live in God's world. In order to live in God's world you have to have spiritual life. And spiritual life comes when you receive Christ. And that's what Jesus promises them, look at it in the last of verse 19, "Because I live ... what? ... ye shall live also." I will provide for you resurrection life so that you can live in God's dimension and comprehend what God is doing. And as I said to you last week, we believers who know Jesus Christ live in another world. Oh yeah, we dangle our feet in this world, we move in this world, but it is in His world that we live and move and have our being. We live in the heavenlies. We see God move. We see the Spirit of God work. We see Christ in action. We can sense what's going on in a divine way that the world has no conception of. That's because we have spiritual life.
And so we saw last week, spiritual Helper and spiritual life. Now we come today to the third one, the third supernatural promise in verse 20. And it runs through verse 24 and is somewhat repetitious, but I want you to see the purpose of the repetition. And here Jesus gives a promise of a spiritual ‑- of a supernatural union, a supernatural union. And this is something that I just can't grasp and it's because it's the mystery of the trinity, there's no way for us to understand this, but to receive it and to believe it and to rejoice in it. And I want you to see what this promise involves.
Verse 20: "At that day, ye shall know that I am in My Father," they still don't understand that, they still don't understand the mystery of the relation of the Son to the Father, "and you'll know that ye are in Me and I am in you." Now that's another fantastic statement. That is another classic dispensational statement.
Now the promise is that those who love Christ are not only indwelt, watch this, by the Holy Spirit, that's verse 16 and 17, they're also indwelt by Christ, that's verse 18, but verse 20 says they are blended together in a kind of a supernatural union. In other words, it is not simply Christ and the Spirit of God there detached, but we are somehow blended into a union with them. And Jesus illustrates it by saying -- "At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me and I in you." And He tangles us all up in His relationship to the Father in this union. We are one with God and Christ. That's why it becomes so ludicrous when we do the things that the devil tells us to do. That's why Paul says in Romans ‑- Oh, he says, don't you know that to whom you yield yourselves to obey his servants, you are whom you obey? I mean, if you said you're going to be God's and you gave God your life and you said my allegiance is to you, God. What are you doing serving Satan? In other words, that's ludicrous ... that's ridiculous that's idiotic. Sin becomes some kind of a mental aberration to begin with ... when a believer engages in it ... because you are all tangled up in a supernatural union with God and Christ and sin has no place, it's incongruous, it doesn't fit.
And so, Jesus promises to them a union. Now they don't understand it at this point. Their minds cannot conceive of it. But at the beginning of verse 20, Jesus says, "At that day ye shall know." What day is that? I believe, very obviously, it's the day of Pentecost, the day in which the Holy Spirit comes. Who is it that's going to abide with them to teach them? Who is it? It's the Holy Spirit. And it won't be until the Holy Spirit comes to dwell within them and begins to teach them the truth, and you'll notice that when we get to verse 26, that He'll teach them all things, when the Spirit of God comes in and begins to teach them then they will understand the relation of God and Christ and the relation of them and Christ, and not until, really. And as suddenly as they received the Holy Spirit in Acts chapter 2, just as suddenly as the Holy Spirit came upon them, so suddenly did they begin to understand. And on the very day of Pentecost Peter stood up, bumbling, denying Peter who couldn't quite get his head screwed on right all through this discourse, who never really understood anything along the way, who was batting his head against the proverbial wall continually trying to understand it, who was in frustration up to his ears, that same bumbling Peter stands up on the very day that the Spirit of God came to dwell within him and preaches a fantastic sermon, clearly delineating exactly who Jesus Christ is, exactly who the Father is, how They are related and exactly why Jesus came, why He died, why He rose and what it all meant in reference to Israel. Right down the line he turns into Peter super-theologian.
Now there has to be a difference. And there wasn't any time for a seminary education and to read all the good books, there weren't any. The Spirit of God supernaturally untangled Peter's brain and it all fell into place. A totally different Peter when the day of Pentecost arrived. You'll understand it at that day; it will all fall into place.
And then that classic statement at the end of verse 20 that I must comment on, because, you see, this is unique, this is not true of the Old Testament, that's why the church can't exist in the Old Testament, great massive theology today teaches the church is in the Old Testament, it is not in the Old Testament. It can't be in the Old Testament. The character of the church, first of all, is the Holy Spirit in you and that didn't happen until Pentecost. The second characteristic of the church is here in verse 20, "Christ in me and I in Christ." And no statement to that effect is ever made in the Old Testament. That's a dispensational statement; the Old Testament could never say ... some Old Testament saint could never say ‑- The Messiah's in me
and I'm inthe Messiah. No way. This is a new provision for the church. It never occurred before. This is Christ in me, I in Christ union. Jesus promises a supernatural union, we're one with Jesus Christ. My friend, that's again why it becomes so ludicrous for you and I to sin because we are dragging Jesus Christ into this very thing. We are one with Christ.
The Bible teaches, first of all, that we are in Christ. Romans 8:1 says: "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in ... what? ... Christ Jesus." We are in Christ. In Romans chapter 16 and verse 7, it says: "Greet Andronicus and Junias," who were a couple of apostles, "my kinsmen and fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me." In Christ before me.
In I Corinthians chapter I and verse 30, "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus."
In II Corinthians 5:17 says: "If any man be in Christ he is a new creature."
We are in Christ. That's the point of much of the New Testament. We are in Christ. That's a union. And then the other side of it is that Christ is in us. In II Corinthians chapter 3 and verse 5, it says this ... well, that's the wrong Scripture. Sorry about that. It was late last night. Anyway, Galatians 2:20 comes to my mind, I'll use that one, same thing. Galatians 2:20 gives us the picture, not of us in Christ but of Christ in us. "I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I but Christ liveth in me." In other words, the point is not only am I in Christ but Christ is in me. You say -‑ Well, I don't understand the distinctions. You're not supposed to. That's not the point. The point is He wants to mix it up so much that if you don't understand the distinctions, at least you understand that there's a union there. Right? You may not be able to cut it in half and see exactly what each specific means, but you must understand that there is a vital union between yourself and Christ. That's the whole point.
I'll redeem myself again, I think of another verse, Colossians 1:27, "To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles which is Christ in you, the hope of glory." That's the great mystery. Now a mystery was something hidden that is just revealed. The Old Testament never understood this concept, it was a mystery. The mystery revealed, Christ in you.
And so, we are involved in a supernatural union. We're in Christ and He's in us. Don't try to cut it up, just let it be like that. It means we're one with Christ.
I was thinking about how to illustrate that oneness ... let me give you what I think may be the best illustration. In Revelation 3:21, I'll just read you a verse, listen to this. This shows you how much we're really tied together with Christ. "To him that overcometh," Jesus says, "will I grant," now watch this, "to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame and am set down with My Father in His throne." That's a crowded throne. The
Father is there ... the Son is there ... and every believer ... we're all there. Now don't start visualizing that or it will get a little bit ridiculous. The point is a spiritual point to show you how absolutely we are in union with the Son who is in union with the Father, Revelation 3:21 has every believer and the Father and the Son all piled on the eternal throne together. Now there is no more supreme illustration of our absolute union with Christ thanthat. People talk about having an in with certain big
mucky‑mucks, you know ... Well, I know so‑and‑so. Well, I've got an in with this guy, he could probably get you a better deal.
Or, I've got an in over here. Listen, you can talk about all your ins ‑- we have an in with Christ ‑- we are in Christ and He is in us and that's the best in.
So, Jesus says to these worried eleven ‑- In the day when the Holy Spirit comes ‑- you'll understand it all, it will clear up, and you'll know your supernaturalunion with Me, you'll understand that, in effect, we are really one. And this is certainly a fantastic thing to realize.
In verse 23 of I John 3, it says this: "And this is His commandment that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another as He gave us commandment." Listen to this, "And he that keepeth His commandments, dwelleth in Him and He in him." See, now there's looking at it from the angle that it is those who love Him and obey Him who are in Christ and in whom Christ dwells, and by this we know that He abides in us. How do we know that He abides in us? "By the Spirit whom He has given us." How do you know you're a Christian? When you possess the Holy Spirit. How do you know you're in union with Jesus Christ? When you possess the Holy Spirit. How do you know you'reone with the Father? When you possess the Holy Spirit. And the only people who possess the Holy Spirit are those who have received Jesus Christ as Savior.
Then in a beautiful summary, kind of crushing the full bloom of redemption into one little wisp of fragrance, Jesus reviews how a man comes into that supernatural union with Him. It's almost like He's thinking about this supernatural union and then just once more, He wants to throw out how you get into that union. Verse 21: "He that hath My commandments and keeps them, he it is that loveth Me." That's how you can tell true love, same principle exactly as in verse 15. "And he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father." Do you know that anybody who loves Jesus the Father loves? Did you know that? The Father wants to glorify the Son. The Father continually glorifies the Son. Anybody who loves the Son is thus loved of the Father.
I'll tell you, that's true in a human realm. Anybody who loves my children, I love. Isn't that true? We love the people who love our children. And in a human sense it's true ... how much more vast is it true in God's mind? One who loves the
Son is loved of the Father. And the Son, it says in verse 21, "And I will love him," says the Son, "and will manifest Myself to him." How do you get into this union? I mean, the average guy just walking around the world, banging around, breathing a little smog, waiting to get cancer, or waiting to have a heart attack, or get run over by a local bus, or a train, or a plane crash, & he's just kind of living and walking around ‑- doesn't sense God, doesn't know what's going on. Somebody walks up and says ‑- Fella, you can walk in heavenlies, you can have a union with God, you can be in oneness with Jesus Christ, the Son of God, you can have a tremendous supernatural union ... And he says -‑ Well, that sounds real good, how do you get into it? And so Jesus says ‑- It's very simple. All I ask is that ye love Me, and that your love be evidenced by the fact that you keep My commandments and if you love Me, My Father will love you and I will love you and on that basis of your love we will manifest ourselves to you. Christ says I reveal Myself to the one who loves Me.
And so it is that Jesus Christ says I manifest Myself to him, that is to the one who loves Me. If you want that supernatural union, it comes with loving Jesus Christ, a personal love relationship between you and Christ ‑- not religion ‑- not cranking out the motions -- not coming to church and going through some kind of a ritual ‑- but a honest, deep, heartfelt committed kind of love that says ‑- I obey because I love. And to that kind of love comes the manifestation of Jesus Christ and all of His fullness and the union that results.
Now there was one guy there who didn't quite get it. And I'm sure they all really were dumbfounded at this point. One of them speaks up in verse 22 and his name is Judas and this is not Judas Iscariot, this is Judas who is also called Lebbaeus and also called Thaddaeus. Verse 22: "Judas saith unto Him," not Iscariot, "Lord," and this is good, "how is it that Thou wilt manifest Thyself unto us and not unto the world?" In other words, he's thinking that when Jesus says ‑ I will manifest Myself to him ... in verse 21, that Jesus is going to come back physically ... right? That's what he's thinking. And he says to himself, Na ‑‑ that doesn't figure. I mean, if He comes back physically and we can see Him other people are going to see Him too. How is it that You're going to manifest Yourself to us and not unto the world? Now that's one possible thought that's in his mind, we don't know, we don't know what his brain was ... what direction his brain was going at that point, but he could have been thinking -‑ Well, that means Christ is coming back physically and if we can see Him, then everybody else is going to see Him too.
But then on the other hand, he also may have been thinking something else. He may have been remembering in his mind that Christ was to be the Savior of the world and he may have been thinking ‑- How is it that You can be the Savior of the world and not manifest Yourself to the world? I mean, it seems a little strange that You would be the Savior of the world and only manifest Yourself to us and not the world, that doesn't seem to figure. And so he didn't understand. But that's predictable. We expected this. We read about it in verse 20, "At that day you will know," you don't suppose to understand yet, you don't have the capacity until the Spirit comes to teach you all things.
You say ‑- Why didn't Jesus tell him? Why didn't Jesus clear it up? Jesus said to them, ‑- Men, I have many more things to tell you but you're not able ... what? ... to bear them. They couldn't handle what they had gotten. And so he asks the question that's predictable, showing he does not understand. It's confusion. He doesn't know what Jesus means. I mean, if You're coming back, everybody will see You and if You're going to manifest Yourself You must be wanting to do it to the world, You're the Savior of the world. They didn't t understand.
But, Jesus is gracious and He gives an answer in verse 23.
"Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him and make Our abode with him." Now that sounds exactly like verse 21, which sounds exactly like verse 15 and they all say the same thing ‑ Love Me and you will keep My commandments and I will manifest Myself to you. They all say the same thing. I get the impor ... the idea that this is important ... don't you? It's pretty important when God says it once. If God says it three times within the space of a few verses it's got to be important.
And so, here's Judas and the rest of the disciples kind of scratching their head and they don't quite understand that how is it that we're going to recognize You and the world won't recognize You. We don't understand this. And Jesus goes right back to the same principle and says this ‑ Friends, unless a man loves Me and shows his love by obedience, We will not manifest Ourselves to that man. In other words, We are going to manifest Ourselves spiritually to men who love Us. And that's what it's all about. Judas didn't understand it. Thaddaeus didn't understand it. He didn't know what He was talking about. And Jesus says ‑- Thaddaeus, I'm talking about spiritual revelation. I'm talking about spiritual manifestation. I'm talking about revealing Myself and My Father to a man's life, to his heart, to his spiritual senses. And the unsaved man doesn't have any of those. The only one who has that is one who loves Me and shows his love by obedience. And so, there it is again, friends, the principle for recognizing Christ, the principle for being in a supernatural union with Christ and God, for the third time, the same principle ‑ love Him and keep His commandments showing the genuineness of your love. The Lord has fellowship only with those whose hearts welcome Him and love Him and whose love is clearly indicated by their obedience.
I'm thinking of a passage in Luke 6, just listen, verse 46, Jesus said this ‑- "Why call ye Me Lord Lord and do not the things I say?" You see, that's the point. That'js not genuine salvation.
People say to me - Well, is ... do you think so-and-so's saved? They've made a profession of faith in Christ but they never do this and they never do that, and then never ... "Why call ye Me Lord Lord and do not the things I say?" This is like a man, he goes on to say, who built his house on the sand. Sure, he had a little house there, a little religious house, built it all up. Only thing was, he built it on the wrong foundation. There are many people who say -- Lord, Lord -- and do not the things ... the things that He asks them to do. And someday He'll say to them - I never knew you. But where that love is true and obedience is the fruit, Christ comes and makes His abode. That's the point. And the true lover of Jesus, mark it, will you, friends? ... the true lover of Jesus, this is so important, does obey. Did you know that? There's no option about it. The true lover of Jesus obeys. John 17:6, Jesus reflecting on His own disciples, said this: "I have manifested Thy name unto the men whom Thou gavest Me out of the world, Thine they were," from before the foundation of the world, every believer belonged to God, "and Thou gavest them to Me and they have kept Thy word." True believers keep the Word. True believers obey. And if you see one who doesn't, I'm not to judge, let the Word of God be their judge.
The world will never discern Jesus Christ because the world will not love Him. The world will never discern the Father because the Father only reveals Himself to those that love the Son. And people talk about God so glibly and God this ... and you hear on the radio, even a guy yesterday -- Well, I'm going to have a great career in baseball, if God's willing. Well, I don't know about whether God's willing or not, what God's plans are for that life of that young man, but I know that God has nothing to do with the positive things in his life unless he's in love with Jesus Christ. And God won't even manifest Himself to him except in judgment. And so, it's a question of obedience, indicating true love.
And so, Judas says ‑- I don't understand. And Jesus says Well, the world can't ... can't know this manifestation without loving Me.
Now you say Well, does this mean you have to be perfect and that you just constantly always, always obey, obey, obey ... is there any room for imperfection? Sure there is. Let's face it, God had to allow for that. It's not a question of perfection it's a question of desire, now let me give you this cause I think it's important. I believe that what Christ is talking about here, more than the deeds and although the deeds are important, is the inward longing. The one who really loves Jesus Christ will have a burning desire to obey Him. Did you get that? He will fail from time to time, but his desire is the key. I mean, if you look on the outward deeds of my life, or anybody's life that's a Christian, and if I'm honest in looking at my own life I have failed ... I have failed everyday. I blow it constantly. I fail. I mentioned this one time in a sermon some time ago and a guy hadn't been back to church and I saw him about three days ago and he said ‑- I haven't been back at your church since you preached that message. And I said ‑- Well, ahh what message was it? He said ‑- Well, when you got up there and admitted to everybody that you were a rotten sinner and you failed in everything. He said ‑- I figure if that's the kind of ministry you are I don't want to go there. Well, I told him, you don't understand ... I'm not really as bad as I said ... no I didn't. But I had an opportunity to say to him that ... try to explain to him what it is to understand the grace of God and the ... in response to my sinfulness. But I fail, and if I look at the outward deeds of my life, if you look at the outward deeds of my life, if I look at the outward deeds of your life I might have to figure ‑- Well, maybe, I mean, boy, he sure doesn't keep the Word like he ought to. In fact, it seems like we hardly keep it at all, doesn't it? I mean, usually if we've done one thing on one day that kind of goes along with Scripture we think ‑- Oh, boy, what a day this has been. See. God must be jumping around with joy. But the Lord is not so much looking at the surface, the Lord knows that, He's looking behind it, to the longing of the heart.
You see, that's what happened in the case of Peter. It's a perfect illustration. The Lord finally said to him the third time ‑- Lovest thou Me ‑- and Peter said ‑- Thou knowest ... what? ... that I love Thee. What was he saying? He was saying ‑- Lord, Iknow my deeds don'tshow it but You know it. Do you see the point there? His disgraceful actions contradicted the love in his heart and his fellow disciples would have had good reason to catalog him with a Judas, but Jesus looked into his heart and read it and knew him better. Right?
I begin to think about that and I ... I use to think, in one sense; it's an intensely solemn thing to realize Christ can read my heart. Did you know that? But when you think about that, that's a sobering thought. A serious thing that Christ can read my heart. But then I begin to think ‑- Boy, that's really blessed because even when I blow it He can look in there and He knows that in spite of that, I love Him anyway and that when I did that which was wrong, when I failed Him, it was that which broke my heart, which was against my desire to serve Him with all my heart. Now I use to not be too happy that He could read my heart, now I'm happy.
And so, Jesus reviews for Judas the problem. The problem is that you can't really have any manifestation; you can't have any unionwith Me unless you love Me.
Then in verse 24 He explains why the world can't experience this. This is the negative. "He that loveth Me not keepeth not My sayings." You see, I mean, how can I manifest Myself to somebody who doesn't do what I say? Doesn't want Me? Doesn't love Me? And not only that, "And the word which you hear isn't Mine, it's the Father's who sent Me." Why ... why is it that the world can't be in union with Me and the Father? They don't want Me. They don't want My words. They don't love Me. And the words that I speak came from the Father so they don't want Him either. The point is ‑- do you know who it is that Jesus is manifest to? Those who want Him. Did you know that? There's not a soul in the world that wants Jesus Christ who doesn't receive Him, if they want Him to the point of loving obedience. And so He says ‑- Do you see, Judas Thaddaeus? You see, the reason the world won't see Me, and the reason the world won't be in union with Me is because they don't want Me. It's as if He says -- Does the world believe in Me? I mean, does the world love Me? Does the world obey Me? Do they obey My Father's words? No they don't, how then can I manifest Myself to an unbelieving, unwanting, unloving world? They don't want Me.
And I think of Jesus sitting over the city of Jerusalem with tears streaming down those blessed cheeks and looking down over that city even as I stood on the hill and looked at it and thought the same thoughts, He said in His heart ‑ O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, how oft I would have gathered thee as a hen gathereth her brood but you would not ... and He sobbed great sighs. Jesus loves this world and He loves every man in it and the Father loves him as well, but Jesus and the Father cannot, will not manifest themselves to somebody who does not want them. And the supernatural unionthat is ours who love Jesus Christ does not belong to the world who refuses to love Him. And so, in this portion Jesus promises a supernatural union and three times repeats how it's possible by love and obedience to Jesus Christ.
Now that section closes on kind of a tragic negative note, doesn't it? The sad ignorance, the damning blindness of the ... of the man and the woman who doesn't want Jesus Christ.
And so, Christ promises a supernatural Helper, a supernatural life and a supernatural union. And I want you to just catch one thing, andwe won't get through this morning, so relax. I won't try to make it. But in these three promises there is a beautiful complete progression, and I want you to see it.
First, in verses 16 and 17, watch this ‑- to the believer, the Holy Spirit comes. Do you see it there? He sends the Holy Spirit. In verse 18, verse 20, I in you, and verse 21, I will manifest Myself to him, the Son comes. Do you see? The Spirit comes in verses 16 and 17, the Son comes in verses 18, 20 and 21, and then in verse 23, who else comes? Who is it? My Father. Do you see the progression? Christ says ‑- I'm going to go away but I'll send the Spirit, I'll come and the Father will come. Do you know, friends, that the trinity resides in the believer. Did you know that? That you actually are the temple of God, Paul says to the Corinthians, you are the temple of God. Fantastic thought. The trinity lives in you. Now that makes you something special. God didn't go to all that trouble for no reason. And God has a reason for it.
Have you ever asked yourself what you are doing in response to that? Just think about that, the trinity lives in you. Just think about that. The trinity lives in you. Am I wasting that resource? Am I cluttering my life with sin and self and negating that power? I am in living union with the triune God. God must have something more for me than punching in and punching out, collecting my check, going shopping to indulge my desire for food, or fashion, storing up monetary nuts for some unknown winter, pulling weeds in my garden. God must have something more for me than going on weekend vacations, developing my hobby and studying vacation folders. He must have more for me than becoming a prisoner of the Cyclops in my living room or den. He must have more for me than lying on the sand, or catching the curl, or fun and games and money. He must have. Why would He put the trinity in me? I don't need the trinity to do any of that stuff. I think He does have something more for you, He's empowered you for spiritual works.
Look at it, verse 12, "Greater works." Alexander the Great had a wonderful horse, a beautiful horse. The horse's name was Bucephalus. But nobody could ride Bucephalus. He had ... he had defied every attempt to tame him. In fact, so much so that the soothsayers of those days foretold that the man who could mount and ride Bucephalus would conquer the world. Alexander, at that time, just a young man, determined that he would succeed where others failed. And if the soothsayers would write ... he would, first of all ... were right, he would, first of all, conquer Bucephalus and then the world. After many attempts he had no success and many bruises. He discovered that the cause of the horse's restlessness was the fear of its own shadow, and then he deduced the simple remedy and turned the horse's head toward the sun, and conquered the horse and conquered the world.
You know, the divine gift that God has given you is Himself in all of His power. And He didn't give you all of that energy to run wild but to be harnessed to serve and to bear His causes and to do His work. And only will you really function and only will you really be useful when you stop being preoccupied with your own shadow and set your focus at the Son, the Son of righteousness. Stop looking at yourself, entertaining yourself, worrying about yourself, get your gaze on the Son and God can use you.
So, Jesus promises a legacy; a supernatural Helper, supernatural life and a supernatural union. And I trust and pray this morning that you're the recipient of that legacy because you love Jesus Christ.
Our Father, we do thank You for what we have learned this morning, for the review time that we've had to kind of tie some of these thoughts down that are so important. Lord, we just don't ever seem to get where we want to go, we just don't seem to ... to say all that we want to say but we just trust Your Spirit implicitly that what we have said this morning will be used of You. Our words seem so stumbling and so inept and we have these burning thoughts within us that we cannot express, we try, we fail and, Father, we just trust Your Spirit to share these truths even apart from the human voice. God, we just think of two things, this morning, we think, first of all, of the marvelous glory and joy that we have in possessing the trinity, and we know You must intend us for something more than just fooling away our lives. God, help us to get a grip on what we are. And then, Father, there are some here this morning who don't know Jesus Christ and we think of them because they don't love you and so they don't know what You're able to do and they can't sense Your power and Your working and ... and You've never manifested Yourself to them, nor the Father to them, nor the Spirit in them and we know, Father, it's because they don't love You. We pray this morning, Lord, that no one will leave this place without putting their life in Your hands. May they receive Jesus Christ this morning, may they give their love to Him and receive the love that He extends to them. We pray in Christ's name. Amen.
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