“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
“I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Yet a little while and the world will see me no more, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.”
Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?”
Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.”
Jesus Christ, John 14:15-24
In this passage of scripture, Jesus tells his disciples that they will not be left as orphans when Jesus leaves this life. But another will come to Jesus’ disciples in his place. And the Helper, the Holy Spirit, is the One who will come, to be with Jesus’ disciples, forever.
That’s a beautiful, exciting, and encouraging communication from Jesus. But I think it’s important to look at the qualifiers in place here. He starts by saying, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper . . .” So the Helper, the Holy Spirit, is only for those who love Jesus. As we saw in our last post on the Gospel of John, in this same passage Jesus emphasizes the idea that the evidence for those who love Jesus is their behavior: they keep Jesus’ commandments, they follow Jesus’ words. And they’re the ones who will receive God’s Holy Spirit. For those who don’t love Jesus and keep his commandments, they “cannot receive” him. (John 14:17)
And to put the receiving of the Holy Spirit in further context, look at the intimacy described here. In verse 20 Jesus says those who love him are in him, and he, Jesus, is in them. And in verse 21 Jesus says whoever loves Jesus will be loved by his Father, and Jesus will love him and manifest himself to him. In verse 23 Jesus says, If anyone loves him, he will keep Jesus’ word, and his Father will love him, and Jesus and the Father will come to him and make their home with him.
Intimacy, intimacy, intimacy. Three statements of intimacy.
- Us in Jesus and Jesus in us.
- If we love Jesus his Father will love us.
- If we love Jesus, Jesus and his Father will come make their home with us.
That’s the context.
The keys to receiving the Holy Spirit are love for Jesus and intimacy with Jesus.
What do you do that helps you to be more intimate with Jesus?
(You might also like The Holy Spirit: How to Know if You Have Him)