John 16:5 But now I am going 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 go, I will send him to you. 8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged.
Jesus explains to His disciples the persecution and cost of following Him. He explains how He will be rejected by the people, and how they will also be rejected. This obviously led the discples’ hearts to be filled with sorrow. But there is a benefit!
John 14:18 “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 Yet a little while and the world will see me no more, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20 In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. 21 Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.”
Although Jesus was leaving His disciples, there was a promise that Jesus would not leave them as orphans. Even when the world around us gets darker, the light of the world is still seen by His church. Because He lives, we also live. The love of Christ cannot be dampened or defeated.
John 14:25 “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. 28 You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I.
The primary benefit to Jesus leaving the disciples was the sending of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the Comforter, He is the Advocate, He is one who is teaching us and reminding us of Christ and His teaching. The Holy Spirit is the one who will convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment. Jesus calls the Holy Spirit the Helper and describes Him as the one who brings us peace in a world of chaos and suffering. The Holy Spirit points us to the hope we have in Christ, that no matter how bad things look on the outside, that God has it all under control and He will redeem it all for His glory.
In times of distress, when the world seems full of chaos and despair, we must remind ourselves that God has sent not only His Son to be our savior, but that God has also sent to us a comforter and helper specifically to remind us of Christ in our most difficult circumstances.