“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…” John 16:7–8
The time for setting an example for the world has come to an end. Enough has been said; enough has been done. To stay longer and to do more would only serve to take time when it could be better used in a different way, and to add more of the same thing they already had when what was really needed was something different.
“It’s to your advantage that I go away.”
“You’ll miss me, but you’ll be better off, all things considered, if I leave you. You need the advantages that the Helper will give you, and he can’t come if I don’t go away.”
“What kind of advantages will this Helper bring?”
“He’ll convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.”
Notice that Jesus doesn’t say that the Helper, that’s the Holy Spirit, will come and condemn the world. To condemn would mean that there was no opportunity for salvation. The conviction tells us that there is a hope for salvation but that choices and changes need to be made in order for that salvation to be accepted.
A lot of people don’t like the conviction the Holy Spirit brings. They feel judged, and they’re shown that they’re not as acceptable the way they are as they want to be. Conviction tells them that they need to change and they don’t want to change.
“Don’t judge me! Don’t condemn! There’s nothing wrong with me. I don’t need to change. I’m fine just the way I am.
But friends we’re not ok. There’re so many things about our lives that need to be changed that it would be impossible for us to innumerate them all at one time. The Holy Spirit’s role is to reveal to us the sin in our lives so that we’ll understand what it is that needs to be removed from our lives.
But change also implies that new things are going to be added. Do we know what it means to be godly and righteous? Truth is our understanding of godliness is sketchy at best, and even the parts we think we understand, in reality, we only know in part. That’s why the Helper also comes to convict us of righteousness. It’s not enough to tell us what needs to go. We also need to know what needs to come in.
The Holy Spirit also convicts us of judgment. But this isn’t our judgment it’s the judgment of our enemy the devil. The conviction of judgment is to give us motivation to daily choose to side with Jesus. Our victory over Satan has already been won. Our enemy has been defeated. All that remains is to step my step let the Holy Spirit sanctify us.