Translations: 简体中文 繁體中文

John 16:1-33 (web)

Prepare for Persecution

"These things have I spoken to you, so that you wouldn’t be caused to stumble.
They will put you out of the synagogues.
Yes, the time comes that whoever kills you will think that he offers service to God.
They will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor me.
But I have told you these things, so that when the time comes,
you may remember that I told you about them.
I didn’t tell you these things from the beginning, because I was with you.

But now I am going to him who sent me,
and none of you asks me, ’Where are you going?’
But because I have told you these things, sorrow has filled your heart.

The Provision of the Spirit

Nevertheless I tell you the truth:
It is to your advantage that I go away,
for if I don’t go away, the Counselor won’t come to you.
But if I go, I will send him to you.
When he has come, he will convict the world
about sin, about righteousness, and about judgment;
about sin, because they don’t believe in me;
10  about righteousness, because I am going to my Father,
and you won’t see me any more;
11  about judgment, because the prince of this world has been judged.
12  "I have yet many things to tell you, but you can’t bear them now.
13  However when he, the Spirit of truth, has come,
he will guide you into all truth,
for he will not speak from himself; but whatever he hears, he will speak.
He will declare to you things that are coming.
14  He will glorify me,
for he will take from what is mine, and will declare it to you.

See you Later!

15  All things whatever the Father has are mine;
therefore I said that he takes of mine, and will declare it to you.
16  A little while, and you will not see me.
Again a little while, and you will see me."
17  Some of his disciples therefore said to one another,
"What is this that he says to us, ’A little while, and you won’t see me,
and again a little while, and you will see me;’ and, ’Because I go to the Father?’"
18  They said therefore, "What is this that he says, ’
A little while?’ We don’t know what he is saying."
19  Therefore Jesus perceived that they wanted to ask him, and he said to them,
"Do you inquire among yourselves concerning this, that I said,
’A little while, and you won’t see me,
and again a little while, and you will see me?’
20  Most assuredly I tell you,
that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice.
You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy.
21  A woman, when she gives birth, has sorrow,
because her time has come.
But when she has delivered the child, she doesn’t remember the anguish any more,
for the joy that a human being is born into the world.
22  Therefore you now have sorrow, but I will see you again,
and your heart will rejoice,
and no one will take your joy away from you.

23  "In that day you will ask me no questions.
Most assuredly I tell you, whatever you may ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you.
24  Until now, you have asked nothing in my name.
Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be made full.
25  I have spoken these things to you in figures of speech.
But the time is coming
when I will no more speak to you in figures of speech,
but will tell you plainly about the Father.
26  In that day you will ask in my name;
and I don’t say to you, that I will pray to the Father for you,
27  for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me,
and have believed that I came forth from God.
28  I came out from the Father, and have come into the world.
Again, I leave the world, and go to the Father."

29  His disciples said to him,
"Behold, now you speak plainly, and speak no figures of speech.
30  Now we know that you know all things,
and don’t need for anyone to question you.
By this we believe that you came forth from God."

31  Jesus answered them, "Do you now believe?
32  Behold, the time is coming, yes,
and has now come, that you will be scattered,
everyone to his own place, and you will leave me alone.
Yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me.
33  I have told you these things, that in me you may have peace.
In the world you have oppression; but cheer up! I have overcome the world."

Discussion Questions

How would all this information help the disciples not to stumble?
vs 2 Why would people want to kill Christians? And how do you suppose they would justify it?
vs 7-14 What advantage to them does the Holy Spirit provide?
And what are some roles he plays?
vs 15-28 How was Jesus preparing them emotionally in this section for what was to come?
What role does God answering prayer play in this?
How have answers to pray encouraged you?
vs 25 How might explain the difference in rhetoric between the gospels and the letters?
In view of their imminent abandonment, how can Jesus tell them to cheer up?


vs 1-4 Though Jesus had been warning them all along of the impending persecution that he and they will face, yet I suspect the disciples probably didn't comprehend all the implications at this point. For hadn't Jesus just entered Jerusalem praised by crowds as the King of the Jews? So also Christians often have a misconception of the Christian life. For many think that become a Christian means you'll be successful in worldly matters, physically healthy, popular and living as a king on the earth. But Jesus was reckoned accursed. He grew up poor in the outskirts of Judea and being reckon a son of fornication. He died in his early 30's, being reckoned a criminal and dying a violent and painful death after much persecution. Much of the popularity he had during his earthly ministry was shallow, being based upon people's fascination with his miracles. But despite this fact, his words made him unpopular. But he suffered these things in submission to the Father to fulfill the mission given him to save others. That's the Christian life.

Just as the Jews who killed Jesus thought they were offering service to God, so also today as Muslims kill Christians. But even within Christianity there are wolves who ostracize legitimate believers from the Christian community such as Diotrephes of 3John. You may be thrown out of churches, or shunned for preaching the truth. But if these things have not been your experience then have you been walking as Christ walked?

vs 7-14 No one at this point had received the Holy Spirit, for it is written that, "the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus wasn’t yet glorified." John 7:39  The provision of the Holy Spirit given to Christians since Pentecost was unique to the New Covenant.

A role of the Holy Spirit Jesus mentions here is bring conviction to the world. The development of convictions is necessary in the development of salvific faith.

First he develops conviction about sin. And this we see as a pattern in the ministry of Jesus and the apostles. Before the good news comes the bad news. They convict people of sin. And even in Romans we see this pattern as the first two and a half chapters are devoted to convicting people of their sin.

Secondly he convicts the world of righteousness. The concept of righteousness is to be right in the eyes of God. And again Romans systematically deals with this, speaking first as Jesus did of the righteousness of the Law and contrasting it with the righteousness given by God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ.

Thirdly he convicts the world of judgment. Though today Christians may avoid the subject of hell, being overly concerned about "turning people off", and even avoid judging other Christians (contrary to 1Corinthians 5:9-13) yet this subject is central to the gospel message. If you're not preaching judgment you're not preaching the gospel. But concerning judgment there is not only condemnation, but also a judgment for rewards for the righteous.

Thus evangelism is a synergistic process not only between the non-Christian and the Holy Spirit, but also a synergistic process between the Christian evangelist and the Holy Spirit in communicating the gospel.

The Holy Spirit guides us in all matters of truth. John also writes in 1John 2:27 "As for you, the anointing which you received from him remains in you, and you don’t need for anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is no lie, and even as it taught you, you will remain in him."

vs 15-28 These chapters are devoted to preparing the disciples for his departure. This section focusses on their emotions. He is concerned they will feel abandoned. Remember Jesus himself while on the cross quoting Psalm 22 "My God, My God why have you forsaken me?", reflecting the sense of abandonment experienced by all who face tribulation. But here Jesus leaves them with words of encouragement and hope in anticipation of his return. And it seems another purpose of answering prayers Jesus mentions here is simply to encourage the believers.

vs 25 confirms the sense in which Jesus has been speaking to be allegorical in most cases. His plain speech is reflected in the New Testament letters in which he speaks through the apostles quite directly and clearly which partly represents the intimacy obtained in the New Covenant not previously experienced.

vs 31-33 Not only his promises of the Spirit and answers to prayer and the continuity of God's love would be a comfort to them through this troubling time, but also the very fact that he foreknows their abandoning him. He foreknows it, but he doesn't condemn them for it.

The Berean Christian Bible Study Resources Jan 28,2022