Jesus said he would send us a Comforter.
Ah! the promised Comforter.
Have you ever felt like you needed a little comfort? Or maybe a lot of comfort?
Sometimes the challenges of life run away with themselves and we need some help. Sometimes we get ourselves into trouble and we need someone to speak up in our defense. Maybe you’ve even ended up on trial in a court of law, a school or church board, the boss’s office, either trying to defend yourself against false accusations or admitting what you did wrong but still needing someone to represent your case calmly, clearly, and professionally, someone who is not intimidated by the accusations against you.
Well, my friends, that’s exactly one of the functions of the Holy Spirit. In a previous post I discussed an overview of the activities of the Holy Spirit. But today I want to focus on one in particular.
The Holy Spirit is your defense attorney
The word translated “Comforter” in the King James Bible, and “Helper” or “Advocate” in many modern translations, in the original Greek is “parakletos.” It means someone who is summoned or called to one’s side, especially in order to help, someone who pleads another’s cause before a judge. It is a counsel for defense, a legal assistant, an advocate, an intercessor.
Just think for a moment what that means. The Holy Spirit is your defense attorney. How amazing is that! I have a friend who was on trial for a crime he says he didn’t commit, but his lawyer caved into the Prosecuting Attorney and did not argue the case very convincingly. As a result, he lost the case and my friend ended up in prison.
This is one of those situations when a better lawyer might have made a big difference. He did not defend his client very well.
I’ve talked to my friend about “hiring” the Holy Spirit as his defense attorney. After the proverbial eye-roll and “Yeah, right!” he was willing to listen.
As “heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ,” (Romans 8:17 KJV) we have a right to appeal our case to the Supreme Court of God’s Law and Divine Justice. The Holy Spirit is the Attorney for the Defense.
What does the Holy Spirit do as your advocate?
A defense lawyer argues for the innocence of his client. Or if the client is guilty, he explains the circumstances and tries to shed light in a favorable way on the process to mitigate the penalty. He tries to detect false testimony against his client. He knows the laws and precedents and uses them to help his client to the best of his ability. I’m not a lawyer, so this may seem simplistic and incomplete, but that’s at least part of it.
Let’s say you have been accused (and who is the ultimate accuser other than Satan – his name means adversary, by the way, more courtroom terminology for the Prosecuting Attorney) and are on trial. First, let’s consider the situation if you have been accused of a crime (or sin) you did not commit.
Imagine the Holy Spirit arguing your case, presenting the facts, exposing false testimony, and winning a “Not guilty!” from the Jury. No false testimony can hide from and nothing can deceive the Holy Spirit. Your innocence is made clear to everyone.
Here’s another example from a different perspective. What if you come down with a serious illness or debilitating disease. In the Courtroom of the Five Material Senses and Physical Laws of Heredity and Contagion, you are found guilty of this particular illness. The Judge condemns you to slow and painful death.
But you have done nothing to merit this disease in your body. You have broken no moral or spiritual laws. You are innocent in God’s eyes of any wrong doing in relation to this malady.
Here’s where appealing to the Holy Spirit as your Defense Attorney will serve you well. Your case is now removed to the Supreme Court of the Kingdom of Heaven.
The Holy Spirit defends your innocence
Here the Holy Spirit argues your innocence in the eyes of God. He exposes the false testimony of the Plaintiff (the Accuser or Satan) and proves that the false witnesses hired by the Plaintiff told lies so often that you were sick, that eventually you and everyone else believed it and felt bound up in these lies with no remedy but suffering and certain death. (See Psalm 41:8)
The doctors had tried to help you, but being members of the Society for the Preservation of Judging All Things by the Outward Appearance (a.k.a. the Five Material Senses), they eventually agreed that your case was hopeless.
The Holy Spirit then reveals that the Plaintiff was actually attempting to accuse you of its own nature, which is disease ridden and full of death. Isn’t that just the nature of evil, to accuse the innocent of it’s own evil and sickly nature?
The Jury of Truth and Justice immediately decide on the obvious verdict: Not guilty! The Holy Ghost has proved that you are innocent and do not deserve to have this disease. Suddenly you are completely restored to health.
What if you are guilty of a crime?
In the Court of the Five Material Senses, a.k.a., the Court of Man-made Doctrines and Legalism, you will be found guilty and punished severely. A defense attorney assigned by this Court will probably feel you deserved the harsh penalty and not argue your case very effectively.
How does the Holy Spirit present your case if you have sinned? Well first of all you will have to confess your sins, your crimes, whatever they may be, to your Holy Defense Attorney. Otherwise he will not take your case.
You will have to declare your guilt in the Supreme Court of God’s Law. With great compassion the Holy Spirit will present the facts of the case, acknowledge that you admit your guilt. But he will dig deeper into the hidden causes of what impelled you to sin in the first place. Once again, he will argue your innocence in the eyes of God. Not innocence from this particular crime or sin, but your original innocence as the image and likeness of God at the beginning of creation.
He will show to the Jury of Justice and Mercy how the world tired to mold you into its own image and likeness effectively blotting out God’s original creation of innocence and sinlessness. He will also point out that you went along with this worldly, sinful way of life even though it was not part of your original identity as a Child of God, and that you accept responsibility for the error of your ways.
The Jury is moved by your sincere testimony and evidence of true repentance. The verdict is “Guilty,” but you can hear the compassion in the voice of the one who pronounces it.
The Judge signals to the Officer of the Court, who leaves the courtroom and returns shortly with a large Robe. As you approach the Bench for sentencing, the Judge of All the World looks lovingly into your eyes and says, ” You have been found guilty. I sentence you to put on the Robe of My Son.
The Officer of the Court comes forward and helps you put on this beautifully woven garment. You notice there are fresh blood stains, especially on the back. The Robe envelops you. You feel the love and forgiveness of God. But the agony of having stained your life with the mud and muck of the world pangs your heart. You are oblivious to the gaze of the entire courtroom focused on you.
The warmth of repentance trickles down your cheeks and a peace you have never known tugs at your heart. When the Officer removes the Robe, you hardly notice. An inner voice whispers over and over, “You are free. Your sins have been washed away in the Blood of the Lamb. Your original innocence has been restored.”
Never have you shaken someone’s hands so earnestly as when you thank your Attorney for taking your case. He inspires within you a deep desire to share this joy with others, to tell others of the forgiveness you have experienced and the rediscovery of who you really are as a Child of God and Joint Heir to the Kingdom with Christ. Your attorney promises to keep an eye on you, keep you pointed in the right direction, and set up appointments with those he wants you to help.
The smiles of the Judge, the Jurors, and all those present in the courtroom match the beam of joy on your own face as you walk outside with a fresh new life in front of you.
Friends, of course this is only an analogy or metaphor for one way the Holy Spirit can operate in your life. But the deliverance and help we receive are not the end result; they are only the beginning. It’s not just that you are free. You have a deeper purpose in life now: to promote the Cause of Christ, sharing God’s love with everyone you can.
If you are on trial
If you are facing a literal or figurative courtroom trial, I urge you to appeal to the the Holy Spirit to serve as your Advocate, your Defense Attorney. He will not leave you where he found you. But you must agree to his terms. He will defend your original innocence in the eyes of God and restore it to you, however much mud of sin and worldliness you have jumped in or the world has thrown at you. You are now a willing servant of the One True God and He will guide you in His purpose to share the true Gospel of Christ with the world.
Immeasurable blessings to you,