The Helper He sent

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Sunday 09/24/23

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The Helper He sent

For the past few weeks we have been looking at Jesus’ parting words to His disciples just before calvary.

He spoke to them about being branches which grow out of Him and who draw their life from Him and who, because of their union with Him – would bear life changing, character altering fruit.

We have never left the topic of pursuing an intimate knowing of Jesus since the beginning of the year.

At the beginning I was simply pointing out that the driving emphasis of the early church was to know Jesus in intimacy and thereby to come to know the Father. The intended outcome of this intimate knowing was a life lived in conformity to God’s will and purpose.

From there we talked about what it means to know Him, the cost of knowing Him, the need to hunger after Him, living in the light of what you know, the role suffering plays in all of this, the role of the love of God and the Spirit of God in knowing Him, examining the sincerity of our own love for Him, setting our minds on Him, the heart soils and the last few weeks have been about what it means to abide in Him through Jesus’ the teaching of the Vine and the Branches and our need for the help of the Holy Spirit.

And then this week… The Helper He sent.

We ended last week having taken a verbal stroll through Jesus’ words to the disciples just before leaving the upper room regarding:

  • His going to the Father
  • That to know Him was to know the Father
  • That soon the only way anyone would see Him was by the help of the Holy Spirit
  • And that in 1 Jn. 2 John told us that we are steered into the truth and learn how to abide in Christ BY THE HOLY SPIRIT.

So this week we will finish up the second half of chapters 14 & 15 and begin chapter 16 then scoot over to 1 Corinthians to see this show up in Paul’s letter to this church.


John 14:25-31, 

“(25) These things I have spoken to you while being present with you.  (26)  But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.” 

You see these words “all things”

Remember last week we ended in 1 Jn. 2:20 which said,

Meaning you know Christ. He has been revealed to you! In 1John he was addressing believers about false doctrine regarding Jesus, and while he addressed the deceptions he kinda ended with – “but you already know this!” “In your hearts, by the Spirit of God Who has been given to you know KNOW ALL OF THIS.” Later in verse 25 he says, “You don’t need anyone to teach you, but as the same anointing teaches you regarding all these things and is true, even as He has taught you – you WILL abide in Jesus!”

Going back to John 14…

“(27)  Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.  

(28)  You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, ‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.  (29)  “And now I have told you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe.  

(30)  I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me.  (31)  But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do. Arise, let us go from here.”

On their walk to the Garden of Gethsemane Jesus illustrates His words by the analogy of The Vine and the Branches

John 15:11-27,  

“(11) These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.  

(12)  This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.  (13)  Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.  (14)  You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.  

(15)  No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.  

(16)  You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.  

(17)  These things I command you, that you love one another.  

(18)  “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.  (19)  If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.  

(20)  Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. 

If they kept My word, they will keep yours also.  

(21)  But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me.  

(22)  If I had not come and spoken to them, they would have no sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.  

(23)  He who hates Me hates My Father also.  

(24)  If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would have no sin; but now they have seen and also hated both Me and My Father.  

(25)  But this happened that the word might be fulfilled which is written in their law, ‘THEY HATED ME WITHOUT A CAUSE.’  

(26)  “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.  (27)  And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning.”

In steps the Spirit of Truth

John 16:1-28,

“(1) These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble.  

(2)  They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.  (3)  And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me.  (4)  But these things I have told you, that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you of them.” 

How were they and how are we going to remember? BY THE HOLY SPIRIT.

“He will bring all things I said to your remembrance”

So let me ask you a question? Why is it that there are well known people who have walked with Jesus and lived the message of the Gospel and been used by God who get offended and walk away?

Wasn’t it in order to prevent that very outcome that Jesus said these words?

Did His words fail then?

Why didn’t His words keep them?

Three primary things:

  • They didn’t continue to pursue intimacy with Him
  • Their eyes were more on the world and their objections than of Christ and His commands.
  • They relied upon their intellect to answer these questions as they arose instead of the Spirit Who would have reminded them and taught them.

“And these things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you.  (5)  “But now I go away to Him Who sent Me, and none of you asks Me, ‘Where are You going?’  

(6)  But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart.  

(7)  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.  (8)  And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:  

(9)  of sin, because they do not believe in Me;  

(10)  of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;  (11)  of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.  


(13)  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.  

(14)  He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you.  

(15)  All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.  

(16)  “A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father.”  

(17)-(24) goes back over their not understanding “seeing Him but not seeing Him”

“(25)  “These things I have spoken to you in figurative language; but the time is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figurative language, but I will tell you plainly about the .  

(26)  In that day you will ask in My name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray the Father for you;  (27)  for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God.  

(28)  I came forth from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father.”

1 Corinthians 2:1-16,

“(1) And as for myself, brethren, when I came to you, it was not with surpassing power of eloquence or earthly wisdom that I came, announcing to you that which God had commanded me to bear witness to.  

(2)  For I determined to be utterly ignorant, when among you, of everything except of Jesus Christ, and of Him as having been crucified.  (3)  And so far as I myself was concerned, I came to you in conscious feebleness and in fear and in much trembling.  (4)  And my language and the Message that I proclaimed were not adorned with persuasive words of earthly wisdom, but depended upon truths which the Spirit taught and mightily carried home;  (5)  SO THAT your trust might rest not on the wisdom of man but on the power of God.  

(6)  Yet when we are among mature believers we do speak words of wisdom; a wisdom not belonging, however, to the present age nor to the leaders of the present age who are soon to pass away.  

(7)  But in dealing with truths hitherto kept secret we speak of God’s wisdom–that hidden wisdom which, before the world began, God pre-destined, so that it should result in glory to us;  (8)  a wisdom which not one of the leaders of the present age possesses, for if they had possessed it, they would never have crucified the Lord of glory.  

(9)  But–to use the words of Scripture–we speak of THINGS WHICH EYE HAS NOT SEEN NOR EAR HEARD, and which have never entered the heart of man: ALL THAT GOD HAS IN READINESS FOR THEM THAT LOVE HIM.  

(10)  For us, however, God has drawn aside the veil through the teaching of the Spirit; for the Spirit searches everything, including the depths of the divine nature.  

(11)  For, among human beings, who knows a man’s inner thoughts except the man’s own spirit within him? In the same way, also, only God’s Spirit is acquainted with God’s inner thoughts.  

(12)  But we have not received the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which comes forth from God, that we may know the blessings that have been so freely given to us by God.  

(13)  Of these we speak–not in language which man’s wisdom teaches us, but in that which the Spirit teaches–adapting, as we do, spiritual words to spiritual truths.  

(14)  The unspiritual man rejects the things of the Spirit of God, and cannot attain to the knowledge of them, because they are spiritually judged.  (15)  But the spiritual man judges of everything, although he is himself judged by no one.  (16)  For WHO HAS PENETRATED THE MIND OF THE LORD, AND WILL INSTRUCT HIM? But *we* have the mind of Christ.”

1 Corinthians 3:1-16,

“(1) And as for myself, brethren, I found it impossible to speak to you as spiritual men. It had to be as to worldlings–mere babes in Christ.  

(2)  I fed you with milk and not with solid food, since for this you were not yet strong enough. And even now you are not strong enough:  (3)  you are still unspiritual

For so long as jealousy and strife continue among you, can it be denied that you are unspiritual and are living and acting like mere men of the world?  

(4)  For when some one says, “I belong to Paul,” and another says, “I belong to Apollos,” is not this the way men of the world speak?  

(5)  What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? 

They are just God’s servants, through whose efforts, and as the Lord granted power to each, you accepted the faith.  

(6)  I planted and Apollos watered; but it was God Who was, all the time, giving the increase.  

(7)  So that neither the planter nor the waterer is of any importance. God Who gives the increase is all in all. “


Hi my name is Mark and though I am opposed to titles, I am currently the only Pastor (shepherd/elder) serving our assembly right now.

I have been Pastoring in one capacity or another for nearly 30 years now, though never quite like I am today.

Early in 2009 the Lord revealed to me that the way we had structured our assembly (church) was not scriptural in that it was out of sync with what Paul modeled for us in the New Testament. In truth, I (like many pastors I am sure) never even gave this fundamental issue of church structure the first thought. I had always assumed that church structure was largely the same everywhere and had been so from the beginning. While I knew Paul had some very stringent things to say about the local assembly of believers, the point of our gatherings together and who may or may not lead, I never even considered studying these issues but assumed we were all pretty much doing it in numbers right?! Boy, I couldn't have been more wrong!

So needless to say, my discovery that we had been doing it wrong for nearly two decades was a bit of a shock to me! Now, this "revelation" did not come about all at once but over the course of a few weeks. We were a traditional single pastor led congregation. It was a top-bottom model of ministry which is in part biblical, but not in the form of a monarchy.

The needed change did not come into focus until following 9 very intense months of study and discussions with those who were leaders in our church at the time.

We now understand and believe that the Bible teaches co-leadership with equal authority in each local assembly. Having multiple shepherds with God's heart and equal authority protects both Shepherds and sheep. Equal accountability keeps authority and doctrine in check. Multiple shepherds also provide teaching with various styles and giftings with leadership skills which are both different and complementary.

For a while we had two co-pastors (elders) (myself and one other man) who led the church with equal authority, but different giftings. We both taught in our own ways and styles, and our leadership skills were quite different, but complimentary. We were in complete submission to each other and worked side-by-side in the labor of shepherding the flock.

Our other Pastor has since moved on to other ministry which has left us with just myself. While we currently only have one Pastor/Elder, it is our desire that God, in His faithfulness and timing, may bring us more as we grow in maturity and even in numbers.

As to my home, I have been married since 1995 to my wonderful wife Terissa Woodson who is my closest friend and most trusted ally.

As far as my education goes, I grew up in a Christian home, but questioned everything I was ever taught.

I graduated from Bible college in 1990 and continued to question everything I was ever taught (I do not mention my college in order to avoid being labeled).

Perhaps my greatest preparation for ministry has been life and ministry itself. To quote an author I have come to enjoy namely Fredrick Buechner in his writing entitled, Now and Then, "If God speaks to us at all other than through such official channels as the Bible and the church, then I think that He speaks to us largely through what happens to us...if we keep our hearts open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all deeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear Him, He is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, His word to each of us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling." ~ Fredrick Buechner

Well that is about all there is of interest to tell you about me.

I hope our ministry here is a blessing to you and your family. I also hope that it is only a supplement to a local church where you are committed to other believers in a community of grace.

~God Bless!