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13 June 2008

In My Father’s House

John 14:1-3: 1. Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2. In my Father's house (3614) are many mansions (3438): 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 unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

A prepared place: Most interpreters take the Father's house externally to be His ‘palace’ or ‘heaven’. Considering the context of John 14, it makes more sense that Jesus is speaking of the mind of the Father. Here is an example of an inward application of “house”: 2 Corinthians 5:1-2: 1. For we know that if our earthly house (3614) of this tabernacle (tent) were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house (3614) not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house (3613) which is from heaven: “Heavens” then, would be the “spiritual mind-set” of God (cf Isaiah 55:7-11). In another parable, Jesus likened a wise man as building his house on ‘the rock’, and a foolish man as building his house on ‘the sand.’ The ‘Rock’ is Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 10:4) and sand represents thoughts, ideas, concepts from worldly thinking.

The Greek word mone (3438), rendered mansions, only appears twice, both times in John 14. The root (3306) of the word is a verb which means “to abide, to remain, to dwell.” So the noun would be “the act of dwelling in a place”, as, we will ... make our abode (3438) with him, in verse 23. In 2 Corinthians, quoted above, ‘house’ is contrasted with ‘tabernacle’ - literally ‘a tent’ which is a less permanent, movable dwelling place, where a house is more permanent, being difficult or impossible to move. Our minds are represented by ‘the flesh’, while God’s mind is described as ‘spirit.’ Allegorically, Paul is stating the earnest desire to move from a changeable, destructible mind-set to a permanent, indestructible one - God’s. Philippeans 2:5: Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

We are the temple of God (1 Corinthians3:16), therefore when the Father and Son make their abode with us, it is inward, in the heart. So, where did Jesus go, and what is this “dwelling place” he prepared for us? Jesus indicated that after the place was prepared, he would come again and receive us so that we could be in the same place. John 14:4, 6: 4. And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.... 6. Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. Only Thomas, Phillip and Judas (not Iscariot) are mentioned by name in this chapter, but likely none of the disciples understood the words of Jesus at the time, even as today, without the aid of the spirit of Christ, we cannot understand his words. Jesus is the way, but what is the place prepared?

Galatians 4:4: But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman made under the law. God sent forth his Son implies that the Son had an existence before his incarnation. Some versions render made of a woman as ‘born of a woman’, which limits the Greek meaning. To be ‘made’ of a woman implies, not only receiving the human nature by birth, but all the human training a woman gives to her child. It also implies that the Son of God had another nature before becoming human, and as a human, he was given the mindset of a Jew governed by and subject to the law. In his humanity, he was tempted in all points as are we and he suffered mental and physical stress, some of it extreme. The character that Jesus manifested, as he walked about teaching and healing, was that of our heavenly Father. He was showing us that our Father is not angry because we sinned, but He is a merciful, forgiving and loving God. Through the experience of living in the flesh, Jesus added a deeper understanding of his Father and the purpose of humanity. This new way of thinking about the Father and the Father’s plans for us, is what Jesus would return to reveal.

Hebrews 1:3: Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image (5481) of his person (5287), and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged (4160, 2512) our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high; Jesus, the reflection of the Father’s glory (thoughts, ideas, opinions) and the express image of His character, is the power through which God works. Having made a cleansing of the sins of ours which he carried, he took his seat at the right hand of the divine Majesty on high. We have the promise of sitting with him if we overcome: Revelation 3:21: To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. Jesus will teach us how to overcome.

Again, the place Jesus went to prepare was a spiritual mind. Jesus had the mind of the Father (Philippeans 2:5) because he came to think like the Father. Therefore, for us to sit with him in his throne is to receive the same mind-set. This is why there are many dwelling places (mansions) in the Father’s house, and how we become one with the Father and the Son (John 17:21).

I will come again: John 14:3: And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. The theme of John 14 & 15 is that only through Jesus is the way into the Father’s spiritual understanding, which enables us to overcome. How would he come again?

John 14:15-18: 15. If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17. (Even) the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it sees him not, neither knows him: but ye know him; for he dwells with you, and shall be in you. 18. I will not leave you comfortless (3737): I will come to you. Paul indicated Jesus, made of a woman, came with another nature - human. John is indicating yet another nature developed by his human experience and the cross - the comforter.

‘ Comfortless’ is translated from the Greek word orphanos, from where we get the English word orphan. It is used only one other time, translated in James 1:27 as fatherless. The idea in Greek is that Jesus was saying that he would not leave them without a teacher, or a guide, of which parents are that to their children. The Greek word for ‘comforter’ is paraclete (3875), which is in the masculine form, used only by John, and only five times. Paraclete in English is “one called along side.” It is easy to show who/what the paraclete is by quoting John’s use of the word. Here are the references from Young’s Literal Translation, but with the Greek word paraclete:

> John 14:16: and I will ask the Father, and another paraclete He will give to you, that he may remain with you - into the age

> John 14:26: and the paraclete, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and remind you of all things that I said to you.

> John 15:26: And when the paraclete may come, whom I will send to you from the Father - the Spirit of truth, who from the Father doth come forth, he will testify of me

> John 16:7: But I tell you the truth; it is better for you that I go away, for if I may not go away, the paraclete will not come unto you, and if I go on, I will send Him unto you

> 1 John 2:1: My little children, these things I write to you, that ye may not sin: and if any one may sin, a paraclete we have with the Father, Jesus Christ, a righteous one

It is completely clear from the last verse that Jesus is the paraclete, or the comforter, and the comforter is the Holy spirit and the Spirit of Truth. In John 16:7 he said that if he did not go away the comforter would not come. If Jesus did not go to prepare a place, if he did not complete his mission, then the mind-set the Father was developing in the Son would not have been completed so that the Son would have a complete understanding of the Father’s purpose for humanity. It is another paraclete because of Jesus’ experience in the flesh, just as we become another person in Christ when we receive his understanding.

Is the Comforter a different person?: John 14:26: But the Comforter, which is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Here it says that the Father will send the Comforter, but in another verse, Jesus says that he will send the Comforter: John 16:7: Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. On the surface, these verses make it sound as if the Comforter is third being. However, Jesus is referring to himself in, what we call in English, ‘the third person.’ He did the same thing when referred to himself as ‘the Son’ (John 5:23) and as the‘ Son of man’ - John 8:28: Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.

In the last verse quoted, Jesus stated that he does nothing of himself, but only speaks the things the Father taught him. He says the same thing about himself as the comforter, or spirit of truth: John 16:13: and when He may come - the Spirit of truth - He will guide you to all the truth, for He will not speak from Himself, but as many things as He will hear He will speak, and the coming things He will tell you. John 14:10: Believe thou not that I [am] in the Father, and the Father is in me? the sayings that I speak to you, from myself I speak not, and the Father who is abiding in me, Himself doth the works. (Young’s Literal Translation) The Son only speaks what the Father gives him, therefore what we receive comes from the Father through the Son. This idea reconciles John 14:26 and 16:7 in that the Father gives truth to the Son, and the Son gives it to us (cp Revelation 1:1) - Both send it!.

Summary: The Greek word rendered ‘mansions’ in the King James, is rendered ‘resting places’ in Weymouth’s New Testament. There are many resting places in my Father’s house. When we abide in Christ, we are abiding in the Father and the Father is in us (cp John 17:21). True sabbath keeping is resting in Christ 24/7, and as did Jesus, hear and do what the Spirit says. And because ye are sons, su into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. (Galatians 4:6) The Comforter, the spirit of Truth (John 14:6), the spirit of the Holy One is the resurrected Christ who, because of his human experience, became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him (Hebrews 5:8-9).

Colossians 3:8-9: 8. But now ye also put off all these; anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy communication out of your mouth. 9. Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds; Notice that what we are putting off is all inward - it is that way of thinking that generates the filthy communication, called ‘the old man.’ And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him: (verse 10). The ‘new man’ is that which is renewed in the correct, precise, and full knowledge we obtain by hearing and obeying God’s instructions, it is the ‘comforter’ by which we are made into the image of God mentally. Psalms 94:19: In the multitude of my thoughts within me, thy comforts delight my soul. Amen!

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