His work is the reproof of judgment, ad He will surely help us do it.
John 16:8 – And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
Jesus said when Holy Ghost was come, He would reprove the world of “judgment.” The word “judgment” references speaking for or against; justice, specifically divine justice (which we know is always based on truth alone); accusation, condemnation, damnation, judgment. That final term, “judgment,” does not always refer to harsh judgment, but in the case of “divine justice,” it does indeed speak of judgment based on accurate knowledge of the truth. In that sense of the word, judgment can come forth in a good sense when it is examining works of righteousness done in faith. However, in the case of our Text for Today, we see that Holy Spirit’s focus is to “reprove the world of . . . judgment.” And judgment to the world, in this case, human society outside the bounds of Biblical righteousness, will indeed be to the end of “accusation, condemnation . . . damnation.”
This reproof of the world is not something set for a future date in the by-and-by when people stand before the Lord, for there it will not be Holy Spirit Who does the reproving, but Father and Son in Their respective roles. So what then does reproof of judgment mean in this sense? Once again, we need to understand that in this dispensation, in what we call the “church age,” Holy Spirit engages in these activities as our Helper. It is through our life, our daily witness, our walk in the Lord and the light that shines from and through us in that walk. Here I am reminded of a report given about Smith Wigglesworth when he was traveling on a train. As he walked down the aisle of the train toward his seat, a young man suddenly launched himself from his seat to his knees, and at that same moment grabbed Wigglesworth’s hand, placing it on his head. Having done that, he cried out to Wigglesworth, “My God, pray for me man; your very presence convinces me of sin.” In Psalm 15, we read one of the qualities of a truly righteous man who walks with God. It says of him that “in his eyes, the vile person is contemned.” That means the very gaze of a righteous man should carry the convincing power of Holy Spirit that condemns sin, but not the man. When this is manifest, people are more likely to turn TO God FROM their sin than to run FROM God BECAUSE OF their sin. We see it at the well with the Samaritan woman in Jesus’ ministry. There have been times when I have witnessed such manifestations in my own life while simply browsing through a book store, suddenly finding myself being followed by a man who needed Jesus. May the church rise to this place that our God can regularly and consistently use us in this manner.
Manna for Today – John 16:1-16; Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-20; John 14:12-14; Isaiah 55:8-13; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; John 17:12; Romans 10:6-17; 1 Corinthians 1:30; Psalm 15
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