[Sermons on the Word of God from the Word of God]
Today we are going to cover a text which teaches us something of value for our Christian life. There is a balance that must be maintained if we are to remain in God’s will and if we are to reach our full potential in Christ. This balance has been altered by many of our Christian brethren across the board, but we will see in Scripture the importance of keeping this balance.
I would like to go through the text and conclude with two major points.
READ Scripture- This is the Word of God (John 14:19-26)
“But you will see Me” = Jesus would manifest Himself to His disciples after the resurrection.
It is on that day that the disciples will truly understand what Jesus began to teach them about the unity between Himself and the Father.
This verse now turns to a broader manifestation of Jesus to His disciples. Remember Matthew 28:20 “I am with you to the end of the age.” So it is now not just the immediate resurrection appearances but also many other manifestations of Jesus among His disciples in later times.
Love for Jesus is expressed in devotion to His Word, trustingly obeying it.
“Has My commandments” = doesn’t simply mean to have heard them or possess them, but means to mentally grasp the Words that He has taught. It is to take hold of a message and count it as truth.
Judas (not Iscariot) is probably the one that Luke calls ‘Judas of James.’ When he asks this question it sparks an even greater explanation of what Jesus has been teaching. It is certainly a good question. How will the disciples’ experience of Jesus be different from that of the world? In Judas’ mind the kingdom that was to come would be undeniable and evident to all. How will that happen if the world does not see Jesus?
There are two distinct groups identified here-
Us (Jesus’ disciples) and the World (everyone else).
Let me point out that “Word” is singular, referring to the whole of the Lord’s teaching.
This language is very familiar to us because we know verse two of this chapter very well. There Jesus said, “In My Father’s house are many mansions (dwelling places)… I go to prepare a place for you.” Jesus says that it is His work to prepare the dwelling places in His Father’s house, yet here we learn that the Father and the Son co-equally and simultaneously come to the believer and make a home. “WE will come to him and make OUR home with him.” This is where we find the may point for today’s sermon because it forces us to ask the question- How do the Father and Son come to the believer? Let us cover a bit more before we return to this subject.
If you do not love Jesus Christ then you will not keep His teaching and if you do not keep His words then you do not love Him. Look what Jesus has already demanded in verse 15.
Duty can only get a person so far. Someone may obey the Lord Jesus for a time merely out of duty, but that cannot sustain them forever. Only Love for the Lord can sustain obedience to Him.
Point 1: Jesus’ Word is the Father’s Word (v24)
A. After Jesus describes what happens for a true believer, He then makes a point that He has continuously made throughout His ministry:
1. He can do nothing of His own
2. He works in accordance with the Father
3. If you have seen Him you have seen the Father
B. Father and Son simultaneously, mutually, and perfectly cooperate for every work.
C. Thus Jesus can and should say, “The Word that you hear from Me is not Mine but the Father’s who sent Me.”
The second point that I would like to make is my primary point.
Point 2: The Spirit and the Word Never Work Apart (vv23-24)
A. In these verses we see that there is some connection between the Father and Son coming to a believer and the Word of God to a believer. How does the Father and Son come make a home in the believer? It must be by the Spirit!
B. Context of this part of John-
a. Throughout these chapters Jesus repeatedly refers to His teaching.
(1) 14:23 (2) 15:7 (3) 16:1 (4) 16:12 (5) 16:25 (6) 16:33
b. These chapters also have five “Spirit Coming” passages.
(1) 14:16-17 is one example
C. Last week was another good example of the Spirit and the Word’s co-dependency.
a. In 1 Peter 1:23 the Apostle says, “having been born again, not of corruptible seed but
incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever.”
b. We know from John C3 that it is the Spirit’s work to bring about the new birth in a person,
yet here we find that it is also the work of the Word of God.
c. What does this tell us? The Spirit and the Word work together in the New Birth.
D. The Apostle John maintains this teaching throughout. See 6:63 and 68.
E. The Apostle Paul also shows us the cooperation of the Spirit and Word.
1 Thessalonians 2:13 “For this reason we also thank God without ceasing, because when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you welcomed it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which also effectively works in you who believe.”
1 Corinthians 3:16 “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?”
The Christian life must have a balance between the Spirit and the Word. This is what God has ordained. If we attempt to lean more one way or the other we are outside of God’s will.
We can not focus more so on the Spirit’s work in us as we emotionally experience the work of God and neglect the Word of God. On the flip side, we can not focus to much on the Word as we intellectually experience the work of God and neglect the Spirit of God.
God seeks to work in us by His Spirit according to the authority of His Word. The Spirit does not function outside of the Word. Therefore, in order for us to grow to our potential in Christ and to remain fully in God’s will we must not be too emotional or too academic. There must be balance in the Christian life. This means that no matter how young or old that we are, no matter if age takes away good sight or our memory we will learn and be changed because it is the Spirit of God that teaches us the Word of God. The Spirit carries the Word into our hearts. Romans 5:5 says, "Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us." What is the love of God? It is the message that Christ died for us! Who is it that delivers this message to our hearts? It is the Spirit! No matter how young or old a Christian is the Spirit will declare this Word to our hearts day after day, moment after moment. That is how we know God's love- the Spirit working in cooperation with the Word to manifest Christ Jesus in our lives!