Gospel of John [Joh 16:7-11]. The Doctrine of the HS, part 15. Gen 6:3; Isa 63:10-11; 2Th 2:6-8.

Class Outline:

Title: Gospel of John [JOH 16:7-11]. The Doctrine of the HS, part 15. GEN 6:3; ISA 63:10-11; 2TH 2:6-8.


Announcements/opening prayer: 


The ministry of God the Holy Spirit to the world: Convincing.


The convincing work of the Holy Spirit is threefold--of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment—and much light falls upon the character of this essential ministry of the Holy Spirit when it is observed that the end which He accomplishes is the impartation of an understanding of facts, which understanding results in an enlightenment essential to an intelligent acceptance of Christ as Savior.

We return to our study in Joh 16 to develop this point.


Though this passage is in reference to unbelievers it is not stated to them but to believers. This reveals that an understanding of this doctrine is vital to the believers who witness of Christ to the world.


The condition of man is hopeless apart from divine inter­vention.


Man's inability originates from his ignorance of God and His grace due to corruption of man’s whole being, perversion of his sensations, feeling, and tastes, and blinding of his understand­ing. In the fall, man remained accountable and relatively remains a free agent. He retains ability to understand and may rise in this realm to unusual heights. Even his aversion to the good and inclination to the evil, while springing from his fallen nature, has its origin in his utter inability to appreciate the person of God and the inherent loveliness of right­eousness.


The real reason for man’s hatred of God is his ignorance of what God is.


The will of man, however, in itself has no power to transcend its natural ability as found after the fall any more than it had power to transcend its natural ability before the fall. Man in him­self is utterly unable to understand the truth of God. The answer to the problem, therefore, is not found in any development of the natural man or cultivation of latent abilities, but is disclosed in the power of God as manifested in the work of the Holy Spirit.


Apart from this work of the Holy Spirit, God would continue to be unrevealed to a lost race; the death of Christ would be inapplicable to men; and the purpose of God to save the elect would be impossible of ful­fillment.


The importance of this doctrine, therefore, justifies a careful study.


Therefore, this is addressed to those who are saved because it provides priceless instruction concerning the most vital factor in evangelizing.


In the act of lifting this veil from the unsaved person’s mind, a clear vision is gained of the one sin of rejecting Christ, of a righteousness which is derived from the invisible Christ in glory, and of the completed judgment of the cross. That this judgment is wholly achieved in the interests of the unsaved constitutes a challenge for faith.


Salvation becomes thereby, not something to persuade God to do, but something to believe that He has done.


All three convictions center on the person and work of Christ. If the unbeliever starts asking questions or wanting to debate the witnessing believer can have confidence that God the Holy Spirit is convicting in these three areas. Therefore, all the witnesser need do is to communicate from the word of God the good news in these three areas.


The only human responsibility indicated in all of this determining Scripture is belief. It is something to believe when the statement is made respecting imputed righteousness, which righteousness is the portion of all who are saved. It is likewise a demand upon faith to accept and rest in the revelation that Christ has borne all the individual’s sin. The one remaining sin is that “they believe not on me,” i.e., Christ.


This convincing ministry of the Holy Spirit is not one of condemnation or of impressing the sinner with his sinfulness; it is distinctly a message of good news.


He is saying that Christ has died, “the just for the unjust,” and that a perfect standing and acceptance before God are provided in the resurrected Son of God.


Common grace is the Spirit's influence on the world in two related ways: 1) restraining sin and evil in the world and 2) revelation of the gospel.


Too often the first one is not emphasized.


The work of the Holy Spirit in relation to the world is most important for a number of reasons. In view of the power of Satan and his evident hatred of Christians and the truth, the work of the Holy Spirit in restraining sin is required to explain the relative freedom allowed the Christian in the world and the preservation of those conditions which make possible the preaching of the gospel and the maintenance of some order in the sinful world. The work of the Holy Spirit in revealing the gospel to the lost is essential to the whole program of completing the purpose of God to call out the church in this age. It provides for the inability of man and makes possible the salvation of souls. The doctrine is, therefore, important in its significance and necessary to a full appreciation of proper gospel preaching.


This threefold work of the Spirit is further defined in the passage which follows.


JOH 16:7 "But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper shall not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you.


JOH 16:8 "And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin, and righteousness, and judgment;


JOH 16:9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me;


Because of the death of Christ it is no longer a question of being condemned simply because of sin. The determining factor in his destiny is whether he believes in Christ.


The death of Christ is seen to satisfy all the righteous demands of God. To the unsaved, the deter­mining factor in his destiny is whether he believes in Christ. Far removed from a character building program, or merely an encourage­ment to live more righteously, the Holy Spirit reveals that it is necessary to believe in Christ to be saved.


JOH 16:10 and concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you no longer behold Me;


This revelation is necessary because Christ is no longer bodily present in the earth, When Christ ascended into heaven, it was necessary for the Holy Spirit to undertake this ministry. As a work for the unsaved, the Holy Spirit reveals the righteousness of God in two distinct aspects.


The HS reveals that we are dealing with a righteous God. He also reveals that there is available through Christ an imputed righteousness which God gives the believer.


It is not a question of conformity to any earthly standard or comparison. Our life is seen measured by the righteousness of the person of God. It is no doubt true that many come to Christ in faith and are saved who comprehend very imperfectly the nature of this imputed righteousness. It is possible that many only under­stand vaguely that God through Christ provides for their lack of righteousness without realizing all the wonders of justification.


Imputed righteousness by God is the only basis for acceptance from God and the only basis by which any person will enter heaven.


The unbeliever doesn't have to understand the dynamics of imputed righteousness but he does have to understand that the sufficiency of acceptance with a righteous God and life with a righteous God is in Christ alone. The Spirit does this. The evangelizing believer just has to keep things simple. "Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be made righteous by God and so live with Him forever."


Gospel preachers have almost wholly neglected this truth, but that is not a valid excuse for it to continue.  


JOH 16:11 and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged.


The Holy Spirit presses upon the heart of the unsaved the fact of God’s judgment. The unsaved need to know that sin was judged in the cross, and for those who trust in Christ there is deliverance from judg­ment upon sin and deliverance from condemnation.


It is not a warning regarding some future disposal of evil, but refers to the greatest of all judgments that ever was or will be undertaken, namely, when Christ became the Substitute for man in bearing the condemnation which the Father must impose upon those who are fallen.


The unsaved must see Christ as judged and executed for them, and their judgment for sin as already past.


As a token of this, Satan, as the “prince of this world,” is mentioned as already condemned. In the cross Satan met his defeat. The cross is the power of God over Satan. Satan stands already convicted, doomed, and waiting the executing of the sentence.


COL 2:14-15

having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us and which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.


While in the providence of God, Satan is allowed freedom and great power in this age, his end is sure, and those who reject Christ will share his destiny.


Jesus had been His disciples Helper while he was with them, and at the same time His presence and witness in the world had served as an indictment of those who closed their minds to His message.


"convict" - evle,gcw[elegcho] = to expose, refute, convince, or convict. In each use it connotes the impartation of understanding regarding the subject in question.


The gospel is good news, that is the literal meaning of the word euaggelion. The ministry of the Spirit is not to point the attention of the unsaved to themselves or their sinfulness over which they might be refuted and mourn. Rather, the Spirit directs their attention to Christ the righteous who has borne their judgments and that they need to believe in Him. This is good news. The notion that a person has to feel sorry for their sins before they can be saved is a human notion and not at all a biblical one. The true witness and evangelist remains on the three things that the Spirit will enlighten the unbeliever with.



The presence of the Spirit is a demonstration to the world which condemned Christ that He was in the right and they were in the wrong.


The Spirit bears witness to the world, using the instrument of the Church, that Jesus, rejected, condemned and put to death by the world, has been vindicated and exalted by God.


His rejection, condemnation and execution expressed in violent clarity the world's refusal to believe in Him, and that unbelief is now expressed as sin. His criminal conviction is revealed as unrighteous while His Father as well as Himself is revealed as righteous.


His departure is the condition of the Spirit's presence.


Behind the men who acted as Jesus' prosecutors andd judges stood the adversary-in-chief, the accuser, the ruler of this world who, as Jesus said:


JOH 14:30

"I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me;


The presence of the Spirit is the token that:


JOH 12:31-32

"Now judgment is upon this world; now the ruler of this world shall be cast out. "And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself."