Jesus Encourages the Troubled Disciples

I remember hearing Dr. Donald Grey Barnhouse, pastor of the Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, relate about his first wife’s death. He, with his children, had been to the funeral service, and as he was driving home, Dr. Barnhouse said that he was trying to think of some w … More

Troubled

The key statement in this chapter is, “Let not your heart be troubled” (v. 1). We can  understand  why the disciples  would be troubled. Jesus had told them that He was going to die, that one of them was a traitor, that Peter would disown Him three times, that Satan was at work against them and that all of the disciples would desert Him. This would be enough to make them bewildered and discouraged.

Now, to put things in the right perspective, Jesus gave them three basic promises:

  1. He is going to prepare a place in heaven (v. 2).
  2. He promises to return for His people (v. 3).
  3. He makes it possible for us to go to heaven through Him (v. 6).

Thomas still does not understand the meaning of Christ’s statement so he asks a question. In simple terms he says, “I don’t know where you are going, so how could I possibly know how to get there” (vv. 4-5). Jesus makes it clear that He was going to the Father and that He was the only way to the Father (v. 6). Jesus’ statement that “no man cometh unto the Father but by Me” erases the possibility of going to heaven through good deeds, religious ceremonies, giving money, etc (v. 6). We do not have to wait until we enter heaven to get to know the Father. We can get to know Him today and receive from Him the spiritual resources we need to keep going when the days are difficult (vv. 7-12).

Application

There have been times in my life when I have been troubled and tried to work things out myself.  I must remember, the Lord has the answer to our every problem just as He did for the disciples.

John 14:1-12 (English Standard Version)

"Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going." Thomas said to him, "Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him." Philip said to him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves. "Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father."

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