Ghostbusters or Holy Ghost?
Scripture: John 14:1-99
How many of you have seen the movie Ghostbusters? Some of the young people in our church group have not clue so here goes. The premise of the movie is that there are these four guys.
They are a mixture of a smart person, a witty person, the muscle-person, and the comic-person. If you’ve seen the movie then you cannot forget Bill Murray and Dan Akroyd playing two very good Ghost Busters. In the movie, they have to end up saving the world when this really bad ghost shows up in the form of the “Stay-Puff marshmallow man”. To end the movie of course they save the world and end up eating big giant smores.
Today we want to talk about ghosts as well. But we don’t want to talk about just any ghost. We want to talk about the ghost of all ghosts. The Holy Ghost. The Holy Spirit.
As we start this New Year we are excited about the possibilities that we have before us and at the same time we may be scared or concerned for what the future holds. It is upon this premise that I would like to focus today.
When the Lord Jesus, began to get to the end of his earthly reign he began to focus on more specific things. The major thing that he began to focus on was his disciples. He began to focus his energies on the very ones who would carry on what he had begun.
Understand the situation and the hopelessness that the disciples must have faced when they were told about Jesus’ death, resurrection and ascension. Understand the agony of those who had given up their lives, their professions, to follow this man named Jesus; only to be told by him that he was going to leave them.
Look at John chapter 14:2, “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.” So Jesus was leaving.
What were the disciples going to do? I suppose some of them could go back to fishing. Some of them would probably settle wherever and pick up a job to do close by. Some might even marry, and raise a family. Most of them would probably for sure fade into the woodwork.
Surely none of them would continue on doing what Jesus had done, without him here on earth.... But they did. They continued to preach salvation to the Jews and Gentiles alike. They continued to preach that Jesus Christ was the only true way to Heaven, and you don't get to heaven with earthly rituals. Some founded churches. Some wrote many books about this man called Jesus. Some of them talked and talked and talked about this man named Jesus. Some preached and proclaimed his name in the synagogues and temples. Some gave their lives to prove their devotion to this man, and the belief that he truly was the Son of God.
Why did they continue to do the things they did, without Jesus Christ present? The HOLY GHOST! Imagine being alone, but not being alone. Imagine being told that I’m leaving you, but I’m sending someone else just like me. All of a sudden the apostles weren’t so afraid anymore. See, Jesus made them a promise. What was that promise?
Look at verse 14. Cause and effect relationship again. IF you love me, you will obey what I command.
If they do it then what? Verse 15 and I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever---the Spirit of Truth.
It’s important to note here that if you look at the text in the New Testament the word "another" has two different words with two different meanings. In some places another is Allos or another of a like kind. However, in some places we see Heteros, or another of a different kind. The interesting point is that when Jesus promised another comforter, he used the word allos or another comforter of the same kind as me. Even the word comforter means “one called to walk by the side of.” So this other comforter was going to comfort or walk by the side of the disciples and, then it would be the same as if He were here.
Who knows what the initials WWJD means? What would Jesus do? I’ve seen quite a few people with WWJD bracelets, and bumper stickers, hats, and t-shirts. It was a real fad for a while. And it struck me funny that if seems like people are wondering what Jesus would do if he was still here on this earth.
Well, I got good news for you. Jesus is still here! He is very much here in the form of the Holy Spirit. We don’t have to wonder what Jesus would do. We can ask the Holy Spirit what he would do. The Holy Spirit is compared to Jesus, by Jesus himself. Simply put, the Holy Spirit is the comforter, who has come to give us help. He wants to come into our lives, and simply guide us on the path that is right for us.
When you are feeling blue and down where do you turn? When you are feeling lonely, where do you turn? When you’ve lost a loved one in your life, where can you turn? When you seem to be drifting further and further away from God, where can you turn? When you find yourselves more worried about what others think, it’s then that you should worry about what the Holy Spirit thinks. He is all these things to us in our lives. Even though we may not always feel his presence. That doesn’t mean he is not there.
The Holy Spirit came on the day of Pentecost to dwell among men. When you don’t feel very spiritual, when you don’t feel like things are going quite right in your life spiritually, ask yourself this simple question. Have I asked the Holy Spirit to continually take control of my life? Have I asked God’s Holy Spirit to control my thoughts, my actions, my words, my feelings, and every part of my being? If you have asked God’s Holy Spirit to take control of your life, that is your answer to every problem that you’ll ever have in your life. Do you want real power over your thoughts, your actions, and your life? Give up control. Give up trying to fight all these things, and wake up every morning and say, “God, simply put I cannot live the life that you want me to, full of joy and excitement, unless the Holy Spirit guides my every step. So Holy Spirit, here you can drive, you know where I am going.
But, there’s a kind of catch 22 in there. We have to be self-disciplined enough to say, "less of me, more of You. Discipline.., some of us don’t like some of the things that go along with the idea of discipline. Some of us don’t like the call to discipline. Some of us don’t like the call to discipleship. But that was exactly what the disciples were presented with. A call to personal discipleship was what Jesus called them to in verse 15. If you love me you will obey what I command.
This call to discipleship involves seven things:
1. A call to trust in Jesus Christ-In order to trust we must know he has our
interests at heart Jeremiah 29:11.
2. A call to a profound learning experience-In order to become better, we must
be willing to learn.
3. A call to leave lesser things-If this interferes with my spiritual walk, it’s gone.
4. A call that involved the excitement of true fulfillment-How many of you know
what we do counts for time and for eternity?
5. A call to partnership and friendship with Jesus Christ-What a friend we have in
Jesus all our griefs and sins to bear.
6. A call to serious self-discipline-If we want the Holy Spirit to guide our lives we
must be self-disciplined enough to get out of the way
7. A call to high rewards- This is the most amazing. If we stick to this call of
discipleship. We will receive the highest rewards possible.
As Christians, what better reward can you think of than leading someone to Jesus Christ?
I used this at this beginning of a new year to remind us of our ever present comforter .
There is some very good material dealing with the Holy Spirit that we have answers for in God’s word. It was brought forth for us in Genesis and all through the whole bible for us to use and remember.
In closing as we face this New year keep in mind, that if we are faithful enough to follow this call to discipleship, God will send us this comforter. The Holy Spirit will come and help us to live our lives to the fullest potential imaginable.