John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15 (Ezekiel 37:1-14; Acts 2:1-21)
Rev. Gary V. Gehlbach

The God of Truth

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me. And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning. …

And these things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you.

But now I go away to Him who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. 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 depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;  of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

 

 

John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15 (Ezekiel 37:1-14; Acts 2:1-21)
Rev. Gary V. Gehlbach

The God of Truth

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me. And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning. …

And these things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you.

But now I go away to Him who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. 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 depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;  of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.


I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you. (John 15:26-27; 16:4b-15).

Grace and peace to you from our Triune God who has showered His mercy upon us.


Pontius Pilate asked Jesus, “What is truth?” but could not grasp that Jesus was the way, the truth, and the life. In our world, people are seeking truth and enlightenment, but remain in darkness and cling to lies. Truth is not decided on the battlefield or in the ballot box or in human courts. Truth was revealed on the cross, in Christ’s blood, and before the throne of God.

We are in a world filled with lies. We are told that mankind is evolving to higher levels, yet we see ourselves devolving into violence and war. We are led to believe that money will solve our problems, but such a belief reveals that money is the problem. We think that medicine will cure all our ills, but as soon as one sickness is cured many more new ones arise to take its place.

As we are surrounded by so many and so great witnesses of lies and deception, we hear the voice of Christ in today’s Gospel saying, When the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me. The Spirit of truth will Himself bear witness of the truth and that truth is Christ.

Whom shall you believe? With so many people claiming to hold the truth, we may feel as if we are drowning in a sea of deception. Rather than being set free in the light of truth, we are held captive in the darkness of lies and deception. As we stand amidst the world’s dark fancies, we see ourselves fading into despair and hopelessness, helpless and alone.

In today’s Gospel, our Lord Jesus Christ promises that He will send you the Helper, that is the Holy Spirit. And what is the help which the Spirit provides He testifies of Jesus. The help which you need and which is given is found in Christ Jesus our Lord. Christ Jesus is the embodiment of truth who will set you free from the deceptions, lies, treacheries, and darkness of this world.

We need help and our help shall come from the Lord. What is the help we need? We need the truth.

The Spirit of God will lead us into the truth. He will convict you of sin. The truth is you are a sinner, an enemy of God. He will show you that you deserve God’s wrath and eternal punishment. The truth is you deserve hell and eternal separation from God for all your sin and iniquity. The Spirit of God will show you that you alone cannot please or satisfy God or come to Him. The truth is that everything you consider good before God is as a filthy rag. Your life is not a pleasant aroma, but a bitter stench. That is the truth.

You and I will wallow in our self-pity, self-righteousness, and self-loathing. In truth, we are trapped in the muck and mire of our sin and iniquity.

And remember, the Spirit of God is the Spirit of Truth. He reveals the truth about you. And even more so, He reveals the truth about the true God. The truth is that God does not desire not the death of the sinner, but that you be saved. In love and mercy he seeks to deliver you from the muck and mire of sin.

The Spirit of God will lead you into the truth. He convicts the world of righteousness. This righteousness does not come from you, but from God to you. Your righteousness before God does not come by your obedience or your sacrifice. Your righteousness and good standing before God come by Christ’s obedience and Christ’s sacrifice. That’s the truth!

In truth, Christ endured His Father’s wrath and punishment in your place. What you deserved became His. He who knew no sin became sin for us. He suffered the torment of Satan and hell so that you would not. He was forsaken of His Father so that you would be restored to His Father and yours. That’s the truth!

In truth, Christ’s sacrifice and blood has become the pleasing aroma to His Father. Whenever the Father looks at you, he does not see your sin and iniquity, but He sees the righteousness of Christ. In your baptism, you were clothed in Christ. Your garment of righteousness is stained with His blood. In those waters, you were restored to the Father through Christ. That’s the truth!

The only truth is found in Jesus. This truth the world hates and seeks to destroy. This truth, however, is the only thing that matters.

Christ endured the hatred of the world and the wrath of His Father. All this He did for you. The Spirit of truth has called you into this truth ? that you may dwell in righteousness, innocence, and blessedness ? through the blood of Jesus Christ, our Lord.

The Spirit of truth has called you into the truth to see what the world cannot see ? God-in-the-flesh has died for you and restored you to your heavenly Father. It His flesh and blood you receive for the forgiveness of all your sins. And that’s the truth!

 

Luther Memorial Chapel & University Student Center | 3833 N Maryland Ave | Shorewood, WI  53211
(414) 332-5732 |lmcusc@lmcusc.org

Divine Service: Sundays - 9:00a Mondays - 7:00p Bible Study & Sunday School: Sundays - 10:45a