May 24, 2022

Advocate, Counselor

John 14:15-27

“I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth.”

—  John 14:16-17

Sharing a last meal with his disciples just hours before his betrayal and death, Jesus drops a bombshell. He tells his disciples that he will soon be leaving them. Jesus assures his followers, though, that he will give them an “advocate to help” and counsel and comfort them.

The original Greek word here for “advocate” (parakletos) refers to someone like a lawyer who provides counsel in ­legal matters. Our Bibles today translate this word using “advocate,” “counselor,” “comforter,” and other terms. When we say, with the Apostles’ Creed, “I believe in the Holy Spirit,” we are taking comfort that the Spirit is our advocate and counselor.

Jesus’ promise of the Holy Spirit offers us great comfort. We are not alone. Though he is not physically present with us, Jesus has sent the Holy Spirit to counsel and comfort us, leading us into truth. The Holy Spirit is sent by the Father and the Son to live in us, helping us to serve the Lord each day. Jesus provides the Holy Spirit to his followers, saying, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. . . .”

Are you obeying the teaching of Jesus? If not, repent and turn to him, and the Holy Spirit will comfort and guide you. Lean on him, rest in him, and be guided by him in your walk with Jesus.

Lord Jesus, thank you for sending the Holy Spirit. May he work in our lives as our counselor and comforter, as we seek to follow you today and always. Amen.

About the author — Kurt Selles

Kurt Selles is the director of ReFrame Ministries and serves as the Executive Editor of Today. He is a graduate of Calvin College and Seminary, and received his PhD from Vanderbilt University. Before coming to ReFrame, he served 19 years in Taiwan and China with CRC World Missions. Kurt later taught missions at Beeson Divinity School, where he also acted as the director of the school’s Global Center. Kurt and his wife, Vicki, reside in Grand Rapids and have three adult children.

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