The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity—-John 16:12-15
May 22nd 2016
by Sonja Brueck
This Sunday we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity!
The Catechism teaches that ‘ by sending his only Son and the Spirit of love in the fullness of time, God has revealed His innermost secret: God Himself is an eternal exchange of love, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and He has destined us to share in that exchange’. 221
Jesus says in verse 12: I have yet many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.
That must have awakened a curiosity! But it couldn’t be satisfied, because of the disciple’s inability to understand and bear all those ‘Many things’ to come. I can only imagine how afraid the apostles must have been, knowing that Jesus will leave them; His resurrection was probably hard enough to understand- if !
Would Jesus’ miracles and teachings at His lifetime have been enough to keep us going, to proclaim the gospel, the good news? Jesus knew we needed help, guidance, an advocate, a defender, a counselor, to keep our mission going. The point here in this gospel verses is that the Spirit continues the teaching mission of Jesus to bear witness to the truth, which comes from the Father and the Son.
This farewell talk of Jesus is the 5th out of 5 and the last one on the Spirit in John’s gospel.
In the first explanation he just tells his disciples that the Father will give them another counselor who will be with them forever when He is gone. 14:16
In 14:25 Jesus calls Him the teacher in all things, and that this Holy Spirit will help them to remember all things He told them.
In 15:26 He says that when the counselor comes He will be a witness to Jesus and they, the disciples, have to be witnesses also because they have been with Jesus from the beginning.
In 16:8-11 Jesus gives His apostles another function of the Holy Spirit: That He will convince the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment.
The last and 5th explanation Jesus gives in 16:12-15 is a summary that the Paraclete cannot work without the Father or Jesus.
‘He will not speak on his own authority….’ He gives the ‘Spirit of Truth” an exceptional position when He said:
‘He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you.’
The Spirit will also speak about the Father:
Jesus exclaimed: ‘all that the Father has is mine…’
Here we can see that the relationship between the Spirit and the Son is equal of the relationship between the Father and the Son. The Father sent His Son and Jesus sent the Spirit.
The Holy Spirit continues to reveal the truth and glorification of Jesus Christ and secures the identity of Jesus before, during and after Easter.
The work of the Holy Spirit counteracts the work of Satan, who spreads deception and lies throughout the world.
He also exposes the sin of unbelief for what it is, He discloses the full meaning of the gospel.
Jesus revealed this truth about the Spirit to the apostles regarding the future, to let them know He is still with them and always will be. He gives all of us clear directions, that since He is not here on earth bodily present anymore, we can trust in His and the Fathers Spirit. They are one!
The Spirit continues to guide us, to help us. He acts like a defense layer for the disciples and believers, at that time and today, and as a prosecutor for the unbelieving, offending world. He gives us security that the teachings of the Catholic Church are always guided and protected by His Spirit.
The Holy Trinity represents the perfect love between the Father and His Son. The Spirit is the ‘transmitter’. God’s plan was from the beginning that we share in that love. With our baptism we receive the Holy Spirit. The love of the Father and the Son is imbedded in our body, mind and heart. Our duty now is to love like God loves us, to continue to be His apostles.
St Paul says in his letter to the Romans: ‘….. the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.’ Thank God for this incredible concept! We are not alone!
This is our Hope we have to hold on to!
Thank you Most Holy Trinity!