Following Christ’s return to heaven, God’s plan for continuing what His Son had done focused on the Holy Spirit. Four times Jesus identified the Holy Spirit as a “Helper”
“And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever,” (John 14:16)
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” (John 14:26)
““But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.” (John 15:26)
“Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.” (John 16:7)
Translators of the King James Version call Him “another comforter.” In the New American Standard Bible He’s identified as “another helper.” Why these different English titles? The word in the language of the Greek New Testament is parakletos, and it’s transliterated into English as “another paraclete.” The important correlation here is that the Greek verb parakaleo is frequently translated “to encourage.” Therefore, it would also be appropriate to identify the Holy Spirit in this passage as “another encourager” which is why the King James Version uses the synonym “comforter.”
At this time in their lives, the apostles were very fearful. Their hearts were “troubled” (John 14:27). Hatred toward them by the religious leaders in Jerusalem had never been more intense. It was no secret that there had been several attempts to kill their Leader. This was why Jesus “no longer walked openly among the Jews”(John 11:54) No wonder these men were frightened and discouraged when Jesus announced His plans to leave them!
In actuality, Jesus was not going to leave them. He would still be present in the person of the Holy Spirit.The Holy Spirit was then to be “another Counselor” or “another encourager”. He would continue Christ’s work on earth. He would never leave the apostles or others who followed Christ.
Rejoice today, Christian friend, that you have a great Encourager, the best one there is, in the Holy Spirit of God!
photo credit: the past tends to disappear via photopin cc