Welcome to Pastor’s pen. A short devotional for mind and heart. During our study on the Holy Spirit, we have seen the variety of ways the Holy Spirit operates. Have you ever wondered, “How does the Holy Spirit work in the world?” “What does He do when it comes to the unbelieving world?” One key thing to remember about ministry of the Holy Spirit is that he continues what Jesus has begun. One of the important results of Jesus’ life and ministry was that he exposed the sin and false righteousness of the world. As a result, in John 16: 8-11 Jesus says that when the Holy Spirit comes, he will convict the world of three things; Sin, Righteousness and Judgment. Why does Jesus say that the Holy Spirit will relate to the world in this way? The answer to that is because he will continue the work and ministry of Jesus. While Jesus was on earth his life did these three things. He convicted the world of its sin, through his teaching and his very life the “world” those around him in both the Jewish and Gentile world could see that his life exposed their own selfishness. Not only did his life expose the sin in people but he also convicted the establishment of its false self-righteousness. Additionally, while Jesus said that he came not the condemn the world but to save it, he also never shied away from telling the world that unless it repented there would be nothing but judgement. In this particular passage Jesus says that when he leaves the Holy Spirit will continue his ministry by convicting the world of these three areas. What do they mean exactly? Jesus gives us a few clues. First, he says that the Holy Spirit will convict the world of sin because they do not believe in me. It’s interesting here that Jesus does not speak of “sins” plural but “sin.” What is the sin that Jesus has in mind? What is the root of all sins? The answer is, unbelief. Jesus says that the Holy Spirit will convict the world because it does not believe in Jesus. God sent Jesus into the world as the Son of God to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. But the world does not believe that. The world does not believe Jesus is the one and only Son. The world does not believe it is lost in sin. The world does not believe that Jesus alone can save them through his death and resurrection. The main problem is – unbelief. This is why the Holy Spirit will convict the world of its sin of unbelief. Unless this happens, no other remedy is available. The second area is that the Holy Spirit convicts the world of its Righteousness. It is somewhat ironic to say that the Spirit will convict the world of its sin and then to also say He will convict the world of its righteousness too. But this is really the problem with people. Because the world doesn’t believe in Jesus for their righteousness it must seek to establish another righteousness. A righteousness of its own. All people do this because we know there is something wrong on the inside and so we look for ways to compensate for our inner awareness that we lack something. There are many different ways that people try to create a righteousness of their own. Some do it through religion. Some do it apart from religion. Either way it is an effort to avoid Jesus. Jesus says that the Spirit will convict the world of its righteousness because He is going to the Father and you will see me no more. What does he mean? Two possible answers are: 1) He is physically gone and so the Spirit will continue what Jesus was doing in showing the world its righteousness is insufficient. 2) The world condemned Jesus as a sinner and put him to death but the Father raised him from the dead which shows that the world got it wrong about who Jesus is. That, in fact he actually is the savior of the world and without him no one can be saved. The third activity of the Spirit is to convict the world of its judgement. Again, what does Jesus mean? The world judges the cross as unnecessary, uncivilized, silly, barbaric and so on. When a person does that, they avoid the vary provision God has made for them. From a human perspective the cross seems to be the great defeat. But Jesus adds that the Holy Spirit will convict the world of judgement because the ruler (Satan) is judged. What does this mean? It means that what was actually happening on the cross wasn’t the defeat of Jesus but the defeat of Satan. Jesus was ripping out of Satan’s hand the only thing he has over people. The law. The law stands over us to condemn us. But if the law is satisfied people can be forgiven and justified (declared righteous). Now the ruler of this world has nothing by which to condemn. This means then that people must be convicted of their judgment about the cross. A person can either align with Jesus and be forgiven or remain aligned with the ruler of this world who is now judged and condemned. The choice is yours. Which future seems more desirable to you? Jesus’ or Satan’s?