John 16 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
16 “I have told you all this so that you won’t lose your faith when you face troubles. 2 People will tell you to leave their synagogues and never come back. In fact, the time will come when they will think that killing you would be doing service for God. 3 They will do this because they have not known the Father, and they have not known me. 4 I have told you all this now to prepare you. So when the time comes for these things to happen, you will remember that I warned you.
The Work of the Holy Spirit
“I did not tell you these things at the beginning, because I was with you then. 5 Now I am going back to the one who sent me. And none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ 6 But you are filled with sadness because I have told you all this. 7 Let me assure you, it is better for you that I go away. I say this because when I go away I will send the Helper to you. But if I did not go, the Helper would not come.
8 “When the Helper comes, he will show the people of the world how wrong they are about sin, about being right with God, and about judgment. 9 He will prove that they are guilty of sin, because they don’t believe in me. 10 He will show them how wrong they are about how to be right with God. The Helper will do this, because I am going to the Father. You will not see me then. 11 And he will show them how wrong their judgment is, because their leader[a] has already been condemned.
12 “I have so much more to tell you, but it is too much for you to accept now. 13 But when the Spirit of truth comes, he will lead you into all truth. He will not speak his own words. He will speak only what he hears and will tell you what will happen in the future. 14 The Spirit of truth will bring glory to me by telling you what he receives from me. 15 All that the Father has is mine. That is why I said that the Spirit will tell you what he receives from me.
Sadness Will Turn Into Happiness
16 “After a short time you won’t see me. Then after another short time you will see me again.”
17 Some of the followers said to each other, “What does he mean when he says, ‘After a short time you won’t see me. Then after another short time you will see me again’? And what does he mean when he says, ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18 They also asked, “What does he mean by ‘a short time’? We don’t understand what he is saying.”
19 Jesus saw that the followers wanted to ask him about this. So he said to them, “Are you asking each other what I meant when I said, ‘After a short time you won’t see me. Then after another short time you will see me again’? 20 The truth is, you will cry and be sad, but the world will be happy. You will be sad, but then your sadness will change to happiness.
21 “When a woman gives birth to a baby, she has pain, because her time has come. But when her baby is born, she forgets the pain. She forgets because she is so happy that a child has been born into the world. 22 It is the same with you. Now you are sad, but I will see you again, and you will be happy. You will have a joy that no one can take away. 23 In that day you will not have to ask me about anything. And I assure you, my Father will give you anything you ask him for in my name. 24 You have never asked for anything in this way before. But ask in my name, and you will receive. And you will have the fullest joy possible.
Victory Over the World
25 “I have told you these things, using words that hide the meaning. But the time will come when I will not use words like that to tell you things. I will speak to you in plain words about the Father. 26 Then you will be able to ask the Father for things in my name. I’m not saying that I will have to ask the Father for you. 27 The Father himself loves you because you have loved me. And he loves you because you have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father into the world. Now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”
29 Then his followers said, “You are already speaking plainly to us. You are not using words that hide the meaning. 30 We can see now that you know all things. You answer our questions even before we ask them. This makes us believe that you came from God.”
31 Jesus said, “So now you believe? 32 Listen to me. A time is coming when you will be scattered, each to his own home. In fact, that time is already here. You will leave me, and I will be alone. But I am never really alone, because the Father is with me.
33 “I have told you these things so that you can have peace in me. In this world you will have troubles. But be brave! I have defeated the world!”