The word of God is a book that runs in continuity and if there is any break in its pattern and consistency, it must be from our own “private interpretation” of it, for EVERY scripture is breathed out by God. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
As the Flesh of the Man, Jesus was giving his earthly farewell, He promised His disciples what they so desperately needed at the time—Another Comforter. This is obviously because He was their comforter while He was with them hence the word “Another”. There are many who misconstrue this phrase to create a false picture of how the Holy Spirit is a separate entity of itself from God, even though scripture verily says God is Spirit (John 4:24).
Now, let’s reverently look to those soothing words of Christ in John 14:16
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Comforter to help you and be with you forever—John 14:16 NIV
Two observations to draw from this simple sentence of Christ:
- They had a comforter all along who had been with them but for a little period
- They would have another Comforter, who will not be with them for a little while,—but forever. Another version, Berean Study Bible, says “till the age” (when everything is wrapped up).
The simple question of Controversy then is: Is “another Comforter”, who Jesus referred to different from the one that was with them all along?
The Bible speaks for itself in verse 17—the next verse in the same chapter further describes this Comforter.
—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives WITH you and will be IN you.—John 14:17 NIV
The One Unseen & Unknown To The World
Now, who is this one that the world neither Sees nor Know? Is it The Flesh of The Man— Jesus?
The world around Christ were the Jews in His days. Did they know Him?—as in the man “Jesus in the Flesh”? Yes, sure they did! They confronted Him many times, they asked Him questions and He was well rumored among them; thousands of people flocked after Him to be healed, fed and/or listen to Him teach. The flesh of the Man—the ”son of Joseph“, as they erroneously called Him, was well known and seen in the Jewish Land. So they definitely knew the Man Jesus but they sure didn’t know who was living in Him.
But then He further unpacks the details by saying: ‘’You Know Him because he LIVES WITH you“. The world does not know Him, but the Apostles knew Him because He has been LIVING WITH them all along.
This definitely does not speak to the Flesh of the man Jesus that walked the street of Galilee, because both the World and the Apostles knew that.
But Ye Know Him—The One the Apostles Knew But The World Knew Not
Remember sometime before this setting, He once asked them who the world said that He is? Who do they see me as or know me to be? That’s the understanding that differentiated them.
Recall the response was “Thou art THE CHRIST” (Matthew 16:16)- The Anointed one in whom the Holy Spirit dwells! For He received not the Spirit by measure (John 3:34).
That’s the ‘’knowing’’ that the disciples had that the world didn’t have. Not the knowing or seeing of the Flesh of the man Jesus. If this comforter is unknown to the World but known to the disciples, then the Flesh of the man Jesus wasn’t their comforter all along, but the Spirit that dwelt in Him was. Remember He said He could do nothing by Himself except what the Father (The Spirit in Him) does. And John 14:10—”The Words I speak are Not Mine but my Father who Lives in me does his work through me.“
Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work.—John 14:10 NIV
He Lives WITH You But Will Be IN You
“He Lives with You” expresses a present and ongoing action, up until the time of speaking. The same Comforter He was promising them, was living with them. If you would read that with an open mind, it is clear that the Comforter that was living WITH THEM at the time of speaking, that the world did not know but they knew, would now dwell Inside of them—This is the New Covenant. Jeremiah 31:33.
The Holy Spirit (The Comforter), Was In Christ Alone
While Jesus was alive, before He was glorified by His death and resurrection, no Man had the Spirit of truth living IN them. No Man qualified to receive it. He had to open the way to the Tree of Life that men could now have God’s spirit Living IN Them and not merely with them. Remember God had made a promise that his Laws would be written in their hearts (Jeremiah 31:33). Christ is the mediator of this new covenant(Hebrews 9:15). Without him no one would partake of the New covenant – the in dwelling of the comforter.
You may say, what about John the Baptiser? Wasn’t He filled with the Holy Ghost from his mother’s womb? John had the Spirit on him just as the Prophets of The Old testament—Jesus Christ was the first begotten of the Father (Romans 8:29), God births us by His Spirit and His Spirit IN us is the proof of our sonship, then it would contravene God’s pattern to say that John the Baptizer received the Spirit the same way Christ had it and same as the saints in the New Covenant. I believe John was filled with the Spirit the way the old testament saints were—like Elijah and others. Remember how Elijah felt depressed and wishes for death when the Spirit left him, so did John request to reaffirm the person of Christ. Jesus up until that time was the only Man alive, who has ever had the Spirit of Truth living in Him. Remember that the scripture was explicit about this: (By this He meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given since Jesus had not yet been glorified). Also, John: “And John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”
Jesus baptizes with the HolyGhost and Fire!
It is this Holy Spirit that dwelt in Christ alone, that served as their comforter while He was with them, that the Lord was promising will now dwell IN them forever.
God is One, and He is the Holy Spirit, and He dwells fully in one body—Jesus Christ. This same God (The Holyspirit, the Comforter) now dwells in measures in us—the New covenant Saints forever. Amen