” If you love Me, obey My Commandments,” Jesus told His eleven disciples as they were gathered in the upper room after their last supper together. ” And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Advocate, Who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, Who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive Him, because it isn’t looking for Him and doesn’t recognize Him. But you know Him because He lives with you now, and later will be in you.”

” No, I will not abandon you as orphans– I will come to you.” John 14:15-18 NLTTo the disciples, who had left everything in order to follow Jesus, and had been with Him through three years of both popularity and also murderous hatred by those who heard Him, Jesus’ announcement that He was leaving them to go back to His Father must have left them feeling abandoned, like orphans.

So Jesus, knowing and loving His disciples as He did, promised them the Holy Spirit to be with them, and never leave them. The Greek word here translated “Advocate” can also be translated as Comforter, Encourager, or Counselor.  The Holy Spirit, Jesus had told them, had been with them, but would now live within them.

They would not be abandoned orphans, having lost their Master and Teacher, the One Who called them “Children.” The Holy Spirit would come to them and live in them, giving counsel, comfort, and encouragement, leading them always into the Truth, just  as Jesus had given them for three years. And He would never leave them.

The gift of the Holy Spirit was not only given to the eleven disciples who were with Jesus that night. In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul says “And when you believed in Christ, He identified you as His own by giving you the Holy Spirit, Whom He promised long ago.”  Even today, the Holy Spirit lives in those who love Jesus and obey His Words, leading us into all truth, counseling, encouraging, and comforting us.


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