Daily Word

Sin, righteousness and judgment | John 16:5-11

5 But now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6 But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. 7 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 go, I will send him to you.

8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.

John 16:5-11 (ESV)

Where are you going?

Why does Jesus say they haven’t asked Him where He is going? Didn’t Peter ask Jesus where He is going in John 13:36 and Thomas in John 14:5? “Jesus evidently had not regarded those questions as expressing genuine interest in Himself but in themselves. He apparently regarded them as superficial protests against His departure.” (Dodd quoted in planobiblechapel.org)” Jesus understands their emotions and doesn’t negate them but seeks to comfort His disciples.

Holy Spirit advent

It’s good for the disciples forJesus to leave for many reasons. It “implies that the dispensation of the Spirit is a more blessed manifestation of God than was even the bodily presence of the risen Saviour.” (Alford in enduringword.com):

  • In His body, Jesus could only be in one place at a time. The Spirit can be – and is – everywhere and hence able to minister to all the disciples at one time. 
  • Of course His reason for coming was to die so He must leave. His leaving  provides for forgiveness of sin and reconciliation to God.
  • Can you think of others? Leave a comment. One more listed below.

Sin and righteousness and judgment

The Spirit is the one who convicts. It’s not our job. He convicts of:

  • Sin – Who else can so perfectly take the truth and apply it to our minds and hearts? Remember when you were first convicted of sin? Undoubtedly you heard the Word of God and the Spirit took it and enabled you to understand. All have sinned (Romans 3:23) and no one has an excuse (Romans 1:20).
  • Righteousness – Jesus’ death and resurrection provides the righteousness we need to be forgiven and reconciled to God. The Spirit tells sinners that God has a righteous standard they can never meet outside of repentance and faith in Christ. 
  • Judgment – the ruler of this world, Satan, is judged. All who aren’t forgiven by faith in Christ are also judged. The Spirit convicts them of this.

None of these we can do. But we can pray that the Spirit convicts those around us through the Word and our testimony.


  • Rely on the Spirit to do the convicting of those you share the gospel with. Be sure to do your part to pray for them and share the gospel and your life with them. Build a relationship of trust.
The witness. Image from http://images.wisegeek.com/ *

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