Summary: Jesus told the disciples some things that should have given them - and should give all believers - comforting assurances regarding security in Him.
“Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, what then has happened that You are going to disclose Yourself to us and not to the world?” 23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him. 24 “He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me. 25 “These things I have spoken to you while abiding 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 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. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. 28 “You heard that I said to you, ‘I go away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved Me, you would have rejoiced because I go to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. 29 “Now I have told you before it happens, so that when it happens, you may believe. 30 “I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me; 31 but so that the world may know that I love the Father, I do exactly as the Father commanded Me. Get up, let us go from here.”
The one thing we must keep in mind and not neglect to remind ourselves of as we study the 14th through the 16th chapters of John’s Gospel, is the setting.
These words are not being spoken in some cold lecture hall. They are not being said even on a grassy hillside or sandy seaside on a sunny, breezy day. The things being said here are not said in anger or in rebuke or correction of any kind.
This is the Lord Jesus Christ, spending what He well knows are His last hours with His closest friends. It is the middle of the night and they are already saddened by news He has announced to them at their Passover dinner.
Judas Iscariot has left the assembly and of those present now only Jesus knows that when He next sees that face it will be flanked by a very large, angry force of men out to take away His freedom and His life.
Later on in this discourse He will tell them that He has many more things to say to them but that they cannot bear them now (16:12), and we will look more closely at that statement later. But the mood that prevails in this room is that of confusion, grief, and frankly, cluelessness. What is happening is that out of His great love for them Jesus is planting seeds in their heads that will bloom into faith when they need it most, later, and bear the good fruit of understanding (14:29).
Therefore as we move through these verses let our approach to them be from the fundamental conviction that the primary goal of Jesus this night is to give information and assuring promises for the hours and days ahead of them. At any point where the translation to our language seems on the surface to appear that Jesus is avoiding a question or chiding them or reproving them, let a little red flag be raised at that point and slow us down until we have delved in thoroughly enough to get the true meaning of the text, as always asking the Holy Spirit to lead us into all truth as promised by our Lord.
JUDAS (Not Iscariot)
In verse 19 Jesus said, “After a little while the world will behold Me no more; but you will behold Me; because I live, you shall live also.”
This statement alone should have been very encouraging to the disciples if only they had understood. They did not, and they would only understand later what we understand now because we have the Holy Spirit and we have the benefit of knowing the end of the story. Jesus was talking about His impending death and resurrection.
In just a little while the world would see Him no more but these disciples would see Him. They would see Jesus after His resurrection and the fact that they and all believers will see and be with Jesus for eternity is implied in His following statement, ‘...because I live, you shall live also’.
The last time the world saw Jesus was when Nicodemus and Joseph took Him down from the cross and wrapped His body and carried Him away to the tomb. The next time the world sees Jesus He will be coming in His glory and power to judge a sinful world. But those who love Him see Him even now with eyes of faith, and as Job declared, they will soon see Him with their own eyes and not another’s. (Job 19:27)