a second promise

white dove on white bird figure stand

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John 14:18-21

Joh 14:18 “I will not abandon you as orphans; I am coming to you.

Joh 14:19 Still, in a little while also, the world will no longer experience me, but you will experience me. Because I am living, you will be living too.

Joh 14:20 On that day you will come to know that I am in my Father, you are in me, and I am in you.

Joh 14:21 The possessor of my commands and keeper of them is the lover of me. And the lover of me will be loved by my Father. I also will love him and will reveal myself to him.”

a second promise

Jesus has two major events in mind here, not just one. When he says “I am coming to you” (ἔρχομαι πρὸς ὑμᾶς), he was referring back to his previous promise as recorded in verse 3, I will come again (πάλιν ἔρχομαι) and take you to myself.” He wants to make it clear that the promise of his literal coming will not be replaced with some kind of spiritual presence.

But there will be a spiritual presence, and that will take place “Still, in a little while” (ἔτι μικρὸν). From verse 19 on, Jesus is elaborating on his promise to send the other discipler, the Holy Spirit. The καὶ is more significant in verse 19a than other translators indicate. It should be translated “also” because it shows that Jesus is talking about a second promise. It is the promise to not leave his disciples as orphans (ὀρφανούς). That term was used metaphorically of disciples who had lost their rabbi. The other discipler fulfilled that promise.

Lord, thank you for the promise of your coming, and the promise of your Holy Spirit, who is with us now.

About Jefferson Vann

Jefferson Vann is pastor of Piney Grove Advent Christian Church in Delco, North Carolina. You can contact him at marmsky@gmail.com -- !
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