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sin righteousness and judgment

And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment; - John 16:8 NASB

But how?

I have heard this used as an excuse for all manner of condemnation – like:

Well – the Holy Spirit’s job is to convict the world of Sin and since He is in me, I need to get busy convicting the world of sin. So I am going to go to the sinners and start convicting them.

This passage does go on to talk in some more detail about what the Spirit will do in the life of a believer, but as I pondered how the Spirit might go about convicting the world of sin, righteousness and judgment, I thought of what Paul said the Spirit would do in the life of a believer.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. - Galatians 5:22-23 NASB

I know I have said this here before, but the word fruit here is a singular noun. From Vines Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words we have this:

…"the fruit of the Spirit," Gal 5:22, the singular form suggesting the unity of the character of the Lord as reproduced in them, namely, "love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, temperance," all in contrast with the confused and often mutually antagonistic "works of the flesh." [i]

I like to say the fruit of the Spirit is a love marked by joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

I am convinced that conviction will result as we live Spirit-filled lives, speaking as led by the Spirit and loving in a full-on fruit of the Spirit manner. [Tweet This] Jesus hammered away at the sin He found in the Church leadership – the Pharisees and Priests – but He tended to be more gentle and tender with those trapped in the hold of their unrighteousness. His love was compelling, and the outworking of the Spirit in His life brought many to the place where they were ready when the Church was born and the Spirit poured out at large.

He did not wink at sin, or downplay its dangers, but I believe He was helping get people to a place where they could see and receive the light He had to give. He preached repentance from dead works and faith toward God, and accompanied His preaching with works of compassion and provision.

John 16 goes on to tell us that the Holy Spirit will take what belongs to Jesus and disclose it to us. The basic idea is that filled with the Sprit, we will look like Jesus. As we walk like He walked (1 John 2:6) the world will be convicted of sin, righteousness and judgment.

Have you seen this in your walk? Have you seen your love for someone convict them? I would love to hear about it.

BN Writers Page 150Thanks for stopping by.

See you again soon.




[i] Vine, W. "Dictionaries :: Fruit (Bear), Fruitful, Unfruitful." Blue Letter Bible. Sowing Circle. 24 Jun, 1996. Web. 22 May, 2014. .


He presented another parable to them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field.

And He answered and said, “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man, and the field is the world; and as for the good seed, these are the sons of the kingdom; (Matthew 13:24, 37-38 NASB)

I love that Jesus called Himself the Son of Man!

Of all the titles and names for Jesus in the scriptures…

  • Rock of Ages
  • Desire of Nations
  • King of Kings
  • Lord of Lords
  • Son of God
  • Wonderful
  • Counselor
  • Mighty God
  • Prince of Peace
  • If I list them all I might run out of internet

…He chose to identify Himself as “Son of Man” more often than any other name. This phrase appears 80 times in the gospels (using the NASB) and most if not all of them are Jesus referring to Himself.

IMG_0490What is so special about this particular title? It tells us of His identification with us. One of the names prophesied for Messiah was Immanuel.

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel. (Isaiah 7:14 NASB)

Matthew reminded us of this when giving the account of Joseph’s dream.


And this is how Jesus thought of Himself, as a man, flesh and blood. This Lord of the angel armies as Eugene Peterson puts it in the Message, put on flesh.

Paul says it this way:

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. (Philippians 2:5-8 NASB)

He did not hold onto equality with God, but limited Himself to the flesh and passions of a man. We are told He was tempted in every way that we are, yet without sin. (from Hebrews 4:15)

What’s the point, Ben?

One big mistake many Christians make is to think Jesus walked the earth as the Son of God – doing all He did, and Knowing all He knew – using special power only available to Him.

One of the reasons He used the title Son of Man is that He was doing all that He did, by the power of connection to the Father and Spirit, NOT by power intrinsic to Him. He was not a magic man, He was a connected man.

How about you? Are you connected? You can be.

Be filled with the Spirit like Jesus, and spend time with the Father like Jesus, and you can walk like Jesus walked.

John put it this way:

The one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked. (1 John 2:6 NASB)

BenThanks for stopping by today.


photo credit: downhilldom1984 via photopin cc

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