Does John 14:26 Support Three Persons of a Trinity?

An eager Trinitarian asked, “The other question I had was about John 14:26. Jesus says, ‘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 said to you.’” “In this verse, it clearly makes a distinction between the 3 persons as if they are 3 separate persons. Jesus is referring to the “Helper” which is the Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit is sent by the Father as this verse clearly points out. But the other thing that I clearly see, is that the Holy Spirit is referred to as “teacher” but also a “He.” The “He” is significant because that means that the Holy Spirit is a person.

RESPONSE: John 16:25 (NASB), “These things I have spoken to you in figurative language; an hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figurative language, but will tell you plainly of the Father.” Just as in Jesus’ parabolic teachings (Matthew 13:13), “Jesus clearly made it known that he was often using “figurative language” or “veiled speech” when addressing “the Father” to hide the mysteries of the kingdom from those “to whom it has not been granted” (John 13:11).

John 13:10-15, “And the disciples came and said to Him, ‘Why do You speak to them in parables?’ 11Jesus answered them, ‘To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted. 12 For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him. 13Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.14In their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says, ‘YOU WILL KEEP ON HEARING, BUT WILL NOT UNDERSTAND; YOU WILL KEEP ON SEEING, BUT WILL NOT PERCEIVE;15FOR THE HEART OF THIS PEOPLE HAS BECOME DULL, WITH THEIR EARS THEY SCARCELY HEAR, AND THEY HAVE CLOSED THEIR EYES, OTHERWISE THEY WOULD SEE WITH THEIR EYES, HEAR WITH THEIR EARS, AND UNDERSTAND WITH THEIR HEART AND RETURN, AND I WOULD HEAL THEM.’”

Jesus clearly hid the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven from hard hearted individuals who were not worthy to receive it by speaking in parabolic language. The same is true in John 16:25. Jesus used “figurative language” rather than speaking “plainly” to indicate the true identity of the Father, but promised to later speak plainly about the true identity of the Father to those worthy to receive it.

John 14:26 in Greek is “Paracletos” which most literally means an “advocate”, or “intercessor” who “mediates” between two parties. While Paracletos also can mean “helper”, “teacher” and “comforter”, scholars have noted that “advocate” and “intercessor” is its most direct meaning (see 1 John 2:1, “we have an advocate [paracletos] with the Father, Jesus Christ”). No Trinitarian apologist has ever been able to explain how an alleged non-incarnate God the Holy Spirit Person can be an "advocate" or "intercessor" to the Father while being coequal. For no coequal true God Person can pray (to intercede means to pray) and advocate on the behalf of humanity to a higher power, while being the highest power Himself. Such a view would show an Arian type Holy Spirit who is lesser in power than the Father rather than a coequal Trinitarian Holy Spirit.

1 Timothy 2:5 and 1 John 2:1 prove that Jesus alone is our advocate as our only mediator (go between) between God and men. If the Holy Spirit is a second advocate and mediator between God and men, then 1 Timothy 2:5 and 1 John 2:1 could not be correct. Therefore, Jesus had to have actually identified himself as the “paracletos” in John chapter 14:18 when he plainly said, “I will not leave you as orphans, I WILL COME TO YOU.”

The context of John 14:16-18 informs us that Jesus is the “paracletos” as “the Spirit of Truth” who was with the disciples in the flesh but would later be in the disciples as the Paracletos (the Spirit). Romans 8:9 (“… if so be that the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his.”), Romans 8:26, 27, (“… the Spirit makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God”) Romans 8:34 (“Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.”), coupled with Hebrews 7:24-25 (“Jesus lives forever, He has a permanent priesthood. 25Therefore He is able to save completely those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to intercede for them.”) and 2 Corinthians 3:17 (“the Lord is the Spirit”), prove that Jesus is the “paracletos” as the indwelling Holy Spirit (“the Spirit of Truth”) rather than an alleged third God the Holy Spirit Person.

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