“Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.” – John 16:7-11
When you love someone, it is hard to fathom how life could be better without them. Jesus is trying to explain to his friends and his followers as to how it will be to their advantage when he leaves them. Jesus has taught, healed, encouraged, and strengthened these men and women. His words have enlightened them to understand how the Old Testament Scriptures pointed to him. However powerful his words have been, they have still been external words. Jesus knows that when the Spirit comes, those external words will become internal truths. His external testimony will be matched with an internal testimony strengthening them into the men and women he has called them to be.
Peter is the perfect example of this transformation through the Spirit. The one who denied Jesus three times and the one Jesus rebuked as Satan will become the spokesperson for the Twelve disciples. He will speak with boldness and clarity all the way to his own crucifixion. Never again will Peter deny Jesus. Instead, he will faithfully build the church upon the foundation of Jesus Christ.
The Holy Spirit will help in the transformation of Jesus’ disciples and will testify to all truth, including the truth about sin, righteousness, and judgement. Through the illumination of the Holy Spirit, people will come to understand their sin and all the ways in which they fall short of the glory of God. They will come to understand how Jesus was the fulfillment of righteousness and the way to one becoming righteous. They will also come to understand that in Jesus there is salvation and the way to eternal life while without Jesus there is judgement and eternal condemnation for sin.
Conviction through the Holy Spirit is intended to bring life among the children of God. There was and would continue to be the kingdom of God and the kingdom of this world. Through the working of the Holy Spirit and the conviction of the Holy Spirt, the child of God is empowered and equipped to move out of the kingdom of this world to embrace the kingdom of God. Conviction leads to life, eternal life, and the abundant life of Christ.
Reflect & Respond:
What do you think of when you hear the word conviction? Is it a word that you appreciate as leading you into this eternal and abundant life or is it something you fear or resist? How would the Lord like to reshape your understanding and experience of the conviction of his Holy Spirit? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Jesus calls the Holy Spirit a "gift" who will guide us, lead us, and empower us. Yet many believers don't experience the power and presence of the Holy Spirit in their lives. This unique Christian Bible study provides a space in which we can explore what it truly means to "walk in the Spirit" on a daily basis. The Spirit-Filled Life small-group curriculum centers on a 6-part video teaching series examining the life-giving and creative work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Begin to experience the gift today!
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