The Eternal Comforter

Have you ever wondered, as I have, what it would have been like to have been one of "the twelve" in the close circle of disciples around Jesus? And, how it would have felt to hear Jesus say that soon he wouldn't be with you anymore? That, for your sake, he needed to go away? That you weren't yet ready to hear all he had to tell you—but, not to despair, that you wouldn't be left alone; he would send another Comforter that would always be with you, and would "teach you all things" (John 14:26)?

Jesus was to be crucified. His disciples must understand that salvation wasn't tied to a personality. Jesus came to the world to reveal the fullness of His Father. He had fulfilled his mission, and now his diciples must carry on. As baby birds are pushed from the nest, Jesus' disciples had to endure a separation to discover that Truth is perpetual. Revelation would continue down the ages through the gift of a Comforter—the Holy Ghost—unconfined by time or locality, and continuously revealing Christ's message.

Only the Gospel of John includes Jesus' promise of a Comforter that would endure forever, and bear testimony of him. Rather than dwelling on the departure of Jesus, the fourth Gospel uniquely signals his crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension as the beginning of a new era. The discourse with the disciples in John, chapters 13–17, which took place between the last supper and the time of Jesus' arrest, would serve to fortify and encourage every Christian struggling to maintain his or her faith and follow the Master—from that time to this. Jesus left no orphans.

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A 'Balaam' blessing
October 4, 2010

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