What does this mean?
Jesus WITH them...
All through his mission, Jesus has been in the flesh, localized in Galilee and Jerusalem; sometimes with his disciples, and sometimes not with them. But what about the disciples’ NEW mission? Well, by leaving them and going to the Father and sending his Spirit, Jesus will be with them the whole time. How will this help them? When they are speaking the Gospel in a hostile environment or about to die they can know personally that Jesus is WITH them & has not left them as orphans.
Jesus IN them...
And more … By leaving them and going to the Father and sending his Spirit, Jesus will be in them the whole time. How will this help them? There’ll be an new internal dynamic of change and growth, and power, and revelation through a person: through the Spirit. They can know personally that Jesus is IN them & has not left them as orphans.
Jesus present IN all the world...
And more … By leaving them and going to the Father and sending his Spirit, Jesus will be present in all parts of the world, and not just in Jerusalem and Galilee. How will this help them? Wherever they go, Jesus will have his presence there. Here in this room, thousands and thousands of miles from Jerusalem. You can know that Jesus has his presence.
It is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
If you will not think me blasphemous, any company can catch a glimpse of this. If the founder of a company has to be physically present at every meeting, and at every branch of the company, then that company will remain very small indeed. No – the company works out a way to live beyond the physicality of its founder or CEO.
There is something of that here in this text; with the important difference being this: That the founder IS present at every point (in your heart) and every branch (in every believing church) by his Spirit.
One reason it’s wonderful to know this is this: We would like to have been there in Jerusalem, watching Jesus live and touch people’s lives and speak. Like our violinist friend, I would have liked at least to have the opportunity of stopping; stopping to appreciate his life. But the truth is… Without the Spirit, I would not have stopped. (A point made very clearly in the Bible) And so order for Jesus to stay in the world (by his Spirit), he had to go.
Next, Paradox #2... In order Comfort, the Spirit has Convict.