The Believer’s forgotten Friend

Forgotten Friend

Sunday 07/14/19

Series: Walking the Talk

Message – The Believer’s forgotten Friend


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The Believer’s forgotten Friend

Holy Spirit – Helper…friend

Prov. 18:24 says, “A man with many friends maybe harmed but there is a friend who stays closer than a brother.” 

The word friend means a love. Not in the romantic or sensual sense, but someone who is a companion of the soul. In fact part of the way this word is defined is someone who is loved as their own soul. 

David & Jonathan were friends like this whose hearts it says were knit together as one. 

Friendship is a relationship of koinonia for it would not be satisfied with anything less. 

This is the relationship we have with the Holy Spirit. 

Today we are learning about the believers forgotten friend. 

There is another word I’d like to consider this morning, one we ask think are familiar with in here. It is GRACE.

Grace – is any benefit conferred upon you due entirely to the benevolence of the giver. It is a benefit which cannot be earned, but which one has to be receptive to receive.

Charis – a kings gift from his own treasury for his own purposes regardless of performance on the part of the soldier receiving it. (Of course if the soldier had been a bad one they’d have been eliminated already).

God’s benefit upon man comes in the form of His influence upon man’s heart. 

Did the world this is fine from without by subtle suggestions as well as strong urges. 

For the child of God it is internal and intimate. 

Consider John 7:37-39,

“37  On the last and most important day of the festival, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone is thirsty, he should come to Me and drink! 38  The one who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, will have streams of living water flow from deep within him.” 39  He said this about the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were going to receive, for the Spirit had not yet been received, because Jesus had not yet been glorified.” 

So it seems always in one way or another, all of God’s unearned benefits to us are in some way brought about or at very least initially instigated by His influence. 

Even if God were NOT resiting the proud, their resistance to Him would stave off any potential of benefit from God since the proud are unable to be influenced…and perhaps this is one of the reasons God has so restricted His interactions with mankind to His influence.and His influence comes to us from His Spirit. 

We see this in His interactions with the lost.

John 16:7-11, “(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 depart, I will send Him to you.  (8) And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: (9) of sin, because they do not believe in Me; (10) of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more;  (11) of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.”

Now Jesus told them this because it was a necessarily understanding for them to have considering He had just told them that they were about to suffer persecution from the world since they were now of another kingdom. The Holy Spirit was not just coming to them, but also was going to be working on the lost in tandem with their kingdom work. (we do have an understanding now of what is meant by kingdom work right? Define it for me… It is the commission we receive from our nobleman. 

To establish and increase the rule of Christ Jesus in our hearts, the hearts of our siblings in Christ and the world. 

Let’s read this entire account,

John 16:1-11, “(1) These things I have spoken to you, that you should not be made to stumble.  (2) They will put you out of the synagogues; yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you will think that he offers God service.  (3) And these things they will do to you because they have not known the Father nor Me. (4) But these things I have told you, that when the time comes, you may remember that I told you of them. “And these things I did not say to you at the beginning, because I was with you.  (5) “But now I go away 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 depart, I will send Him to you.  (8) And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: (9) of sin, because they do not believe in Me; (10) of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; (11) of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.”

He then told them what the Holy Spirit would do for them,

John 16:12-33, “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now.  (13) However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.  (14) He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. (15) All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you. (16) “A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father.”  (17)  Then some of His disciples said among themselves, “What is this that He says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me’; and, ‘because I go to the Father’?”  (18)  They said therefore, “What is this that He says, ‘A little while’? We do not know what He is saying.” (19)  Now Jesus knew that they desired to ask Him, and He said to them,“Are you inquiring among yourselves about what I said, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me’? 

(20) Most assuredly, I say to you that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; and you will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy.  (21) A woman, when she is in labor, has sorrow because her hour has come; but as soon as she has given birth to the child, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world.  (22) Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you. (23) “And in that day you will ask Me nothing. Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you.  (24) Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.

Though this has broader implications as well, this was spoken largely about the Holy Spirit. 

Consider the words of JESUS both EARLIER in this dialogue and in His ministry. Jesus had told them in Luke 11:13, “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?”

And in John 14:13-17, Jesus told them to ask the Father in His name… Then it told them He would be sending them the Holy Spirit.

(25) “These things I have spoken to you in figurative language; but the time is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figurative language, but I will tell you plainly about the Father.  (26) In that day you will ask in My name, and I do not say to you that I shall pray the Father for you; (27) for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God. (28) I came forth from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father.”  (29)  His disciples said to Him, “See, now You are speaking plainly, and using no figure of speech!  (30) Now we are sure that You know all things, and have no need that anyone should question You. By this we believe that You came forth from God.”  (31) Jesus answered them, “Do you now believe?  (32) Indeed the hour is coming, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, each to his own, and will leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me.  (33) These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

Now Jesus had already told them of the Spirit’s coming a little earlier,

John 14:1-31,  “(1) Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.  (2) In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  (3) And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.  (4) And where I go you know, and the way you know.” (5)  Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?”  (6) Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.  (7) “If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.”  (8)  Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.”  (9) Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?  (10) Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.  (11) Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves. (12) “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.  (13) And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. (14) If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. (15) “If you love Me, keep My commandments. (16) And I will pray the Father, and He will give you 

  • another Helper, Allos par-ak’-lay-tos – Allos = Another, numerically but of the same kind.
      • Paraklaytos means – an aid of any kind. In fact, I’ve been told that in some instances it could serve as a Greek synonym for the Hebrew word, ezer used for women in their role as the helpmate of man. In the Greek writers, used of a legal advisor, pleader, proxy, or advocate, one who comes forward in behalf of and as the representative of another. Thus, in 1Jn. 2:1, Christ is termed our substitutionary, intercessory advocate. Christ designates the Holy Spirit as Paraclete (John 14:16), and calls Him állos (G243), another, which means another of equal quality and not héteros (G2087), another of a different quality. Therefore, the Holy Spirit is designated by Jesus Christ as equal with Himself, i.e., God (1Jn. 2:1). This new Paraclete, the Holy Spirit, was to witness concerning Jesus Christ (John 14:26; John 16:7,14) and to glorify Him. The Holy Spirit is called a Paraclete because He undertakes Christ’s office in the world while Christ is not in the world as the God-Man in bodily form. In addition, the Holy Spirit is also called the Paraclete because He acts as Christ’s substitute on earth. When Christ in John 14:16 designates Himself as a Paraclete, the same as the Holy Spirit, the word must not be understood as applying to Christ in the same sense as in 1Jn. 2:1 where it refers to our substitutionary Advocate who pleads our cause with the Father. It should rather be taken as He who pleads God’s cause with us (see John 14:7-9). 

God Bless!

I hope this message will bless you richly…not because I taught it, but because it reveals Christ. He alone is our blessing and if in any way – whether big or small, 100% accurate or even just partially so – I have revealed our great God and Savior to you in a relationally knowable way, then this was time well spent on both our parts.

We at Living Grace Fellowship encourage you to place your trust in Jesus Christ, deliberately choosing Him and bowing the knee to Him as your Master and Lord, so as to come to realize Him as your Savior.

You have a special place in God’s family & kingdom. The fact that you exist… that you are His creation, says you were in His heart, you are His delight!

If you do not know Him, please reach out to us. Give us a call at the number located on every page of this website or use our ‘Contact Us‘ page. We would be deeply honored, if you gave us the privilege of introducing you to the Lord. Neither money nor attendance at our church will EVER be mentioned.

If you HAVE been spiritually fed by this ministry and WANT to give, we truly appreciate that and you may do so here, but please understand that all the outreaches of this ministry are FREE for you and anyone to enjoy at no cost.


Hi my name is Mark and though I am opposed to titles, I am currently the only Pastor (shepherd/elder) serving our assembly right now.

I have been shepherding in one capacity or another for nearly 30 years now, though never quite like I am today.

Early in 2009 the Lord revealed to me that the way we had structured our assembly (church) was not scriptural in that it was out of sync with what Paul modeled for us in the New Testament. In truth, I (like many pastors I am sure) never even gave this fundamental issue of church structure the first thought. I had always assumed that church structure was largely the same everywhere and had been so from the beginning. While I knew Paul had some very stringent things to say about the local assembly of believers, the point of our gatherings together and who may or may not lead, I never even considered studying these issues but assumed we were all pretty much doing it in numbers right?! Boy, I couldn't have been more wrong!

So needless to say, my discovery that we had been doing it wrong for nearly two decades was a bit of a shock to me! Now, this "revelation" that did not come about all at once but over the course of a few weeks. We were a traditional single pastor led congregation. It was a top-bottom model of ministry which is in part biblical, but not in the form of a monarchy.

The needed change did not come into focus until following 9 very intense months of study and discussions with those who were leaders in our church at the time.

We now understand and believe that the Bible teaches co-leadership with equal authority in each local assembly. Having multiple shepherds with God's heart and equal authority protects both Shepherds and sheep. Equal accountability keep authority and doctrine in check. Multiple shepherds also provides teaching with various styles and giftings with leadership skills which are both different and complementary.

For a while we had two co-pastors (elders) (myself and one other man) who led the church with equal authority, but different giftings. We both taught in our own ways and styles, and our leadership skills were quite different, but complimentary. We were in complete submission to each other and worked side-by-side in the labor of shepherding the flock.

Our other Pastor has since moved on to other ministry which has left us with just myself. While we currently only have one Pastor/Elder, it is our desire that God, in His faithfulness and timing, may bring us more as we grow in maturity and even in numbers.

As to my home, I have been married since 1995 to my wonderful wife Terissa Woodson who is my closest friend and most trusted ally.

As far as my education goes, I grew up in a Christian home, but questioned everything I was ever taught.

I graduated from Bible college in 1990 and continued to question everything I was ever taught (I do not mention my college in order to avoid being labeled).

Perhaps my greatest preparation for ministry has been life and ministry itself. To quote an author I have come to enjoy namely Fredrick Buechner in his writing entitled, Now and Then, "If God speaks to us at all other than through such official channels as the Bible and the church, then I think that He speaks to us largely through what happens to us...if we keep our hearts open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all deeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear Him, He is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, His word to each of us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling." ~ Fredrick Buechner

Well that is about all there is of interest to tell you about me.

I hope our ministry here is a blessing to you and your family. I also hope that it is only a supplement to a local church where you are committed to other believers in a community of grace.

~God Bless!