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Jottings

Though verse 16 of John 14 begins with the conjunction "And", it does not mean that the Son's request to the Father that He would give another Comforter to His children was because they obeyed His commandments. It is simply a further statement of what He would do when He went to His Father. "Another" (Greek Alias) indicates another of the same kind as Himself. The sending of the Son and of the Holy Spirit by the Father have entirely different features. Paul makes this clear in Galatians 4.4,6. "When the fulness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law ... Because ye are sons, God sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, Abba, Father". There was no incarnation, no being born of a woman, no birth under the law in the coming of the Holy Spirit, as in the case of the coming of the Son, yet the Spirit of truth is another Comforter like the Son. The Spirit's coming to us and into our hearts is not an incarnation, the believer is one person and the Spirit another, even though the Spirit is to be with us for ever. We quote the Lord's words so that we may have before us what He said:

"And I will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may be with you for ever, even the Spirit of truth: whom the world cannot receive; for it beholdeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: ye know Him; for He abideth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you desolate (orphans): I come unto you."

The world cannot receive this Comforter; it cannot behold Him, neither does it know Him. He is to be with God's children for ever. We know Him, and He abideth with us each, and is in us. What assuring words these are! We know from our inward experience that we can grieve Him (Ephesians 4.30), and we may quench Him, both in ourselves and in others (1 Thessalonians 5.9). Though the world cannot receive the Spirit, yet He convicts the world in respect of sin, because the~ believe not on Christ, of righteousness, because He has gone to the Father, and of judgement, because the prince of this world (the devil) hath been judged (John 16.8-11). The Spirit is a Comforter to God's children, and the Convicter of the world.

The Lord said that He would not leave God's children orphans, having no one to care for them: "I come unto you". This is not the coming of which He spoke in verse 3, "I come again, and will receive you unto Myself". Note the force of "again" in this verse.

The word Comforter is the English rendering of the Greek Parakletos which means "one called or sent to assist another", "an advocate, one who pleads the cause of another" (I John 2.1). The Greek word is derived from para, near to, and kalea, to call. The children of God have two Comforters, the Lord and the Holy Spirit. The Comforters should not be confused with the thought of the High Priest. Whilst the two Comforters are the Helpers of the children of God in all the variety of their needs, both on earth and before God, of the High Priest we are told that:

"It behoved Him in all things to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself bath suffered being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted" (Hebrews 2.17,18).

It is important to notice that while John writes to "My little children", which of course conveys the thought of God's "little children", and children conveys the thought of such as are born, that is, "born again", the High Priesthood of the Lord is connected with the people of God, such as are gathered together to engage in God's service. To be High Priest it was necessary that He should be made like unto His brethren, and in consequence be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God. Having Himself suffered being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted.