Jesus continues to speak to his disciples about the Holy Spirit, well aware that they were unable to grasp much of what he was saying.
The Spirit is first and foremost the Spirit of truth. This phrase is used three times of the Spirit in the Last Supper discourses, and with reason.
The battle against evil is always the struggle against lies and falsehood, for that is what evil is, a distortion of what is, a twisting of reality.
The very opening lines of John’s Gospel introduces Jesus as being “full of grace and truth.” And in his final argument with Pilate, Jesus states: “my task is to bear witness to the truth. For this I was born, for this I came into the world, and all who are not deaf to truth listen to my voice.”
Throughout his ministry, Jesus came into conflict with the Jewish establishment who did not accept the ‘truthfulness’ of Jesus’s deeds – his miracles – nor of his words. “If you don’t believe what I say, at least examine what I do,” cried Jesus. But so enmeshed were his antagonists with their own lies, that they denied him.
The Advocate, Jesus’s own Spirit of truth, is the Lord’s gift to his Church for the future.
This Holy Spirit is a force for guidance, support and comfort. Jesus spoke to his disciples in parables about the things they were not yet ready to hear. The Holy Spirit will open the hearts of the believers to grasp and cherish the truths of the faith. “Everything,” says Jesus, “that he makes known to you, he will draw from what is mine.”
To be open to the Spirit is to be grounded in truth. To live by the Spirit is to be raised aloft in love. This is our foretaste of the Risen Life, whose fullness we will enjoy in the hereafter.