Summary: Easter 6 (C) - Jesus’ promise provides peace to those who love God’s teachings and peace with the power of the Holy Spirit.
JESUS’ PROMISE PROVIDES PEACE (Outline)
May 17, 2009 --
EASTER 6 --
INTRO: Peace – is it possible in our world today? The answer is two-fold: yes and no. Our Lord himself said there would be wars and rumors of wars until he returns on the Last Day. An earthly, physical peace is impossible. But spiritually our loving Lord graciously gives us peace for our troubled souls. It is this divine peace that we want to closely examine in today’s verses. We start with a blessing from God concerning peace for us. "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus" (PHILIPPIANS 4:7). Note that God’s peace is described as going beyond or surpassing human understanding. Prayerfully today’s text will help us to come to a better understanding of what God’s peace means for each of our lives today.
JESUS’ PROMISE PROVIDES PEACE.
I. Peace to those who love God’s teachings.
II. Peace with the power of the Holy Spirit.
I. PEACE TO THOSE WHO LOVE GOD’S TEACHINGS
A. The setting of today’s words is important. Jesus speaks to his disciples shortly before his crucifixion.
1. The disciples asked Jesus why they were privileged to see God’s glory but not the world.
2. Jesus answers verse 23. Those who love God’s word and teachings will see his glory.
3. The disciples had given up much in their lives. Now the Father lived in them by faith.
B. Why do some not see God’s glory? Verse 24a. Some rejected Christ. They did not love Jesus.
1. Rejecters will not obey Jesus’ teaching, nor see God’s glory. There was more for these 11.
2. Verse 24b. Jesus reminds his disciples that he is the very Son of God. His words = God’s.
C. Jesus wanted to prepare his disciples for the next few days: betrayal, arrest, crucifixion, the tomb.
1. Verse 27. Jesus gives his disciples God’s peace. The world could not offer this divine peace.
2. The disciples had nothing to fear. Their hearts were to be at peace. It would take some time.
D. It may sound strange to us that some do not love the Lord. There are some who do not care at all about the teachings of God. Like the disciples we ask the eternal question: Why? Everyone wants to go to heaven. But not everyone desires to hear God’s word to learn how to get there. Not everyone is excited to worship at church or study the Bible. Why? This rejection of God’s love and teachings begin at our birth. From the moment of conception we are sinful. Sinners are opposed to everything divine. Sinners are God’s enemies. Our sinful nature does not want to seek out God. "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing" (MATTHEW 23:37). Every day our Lord loves and wants to gather us under his protective care. This truly is true peace.
E. Praise God for the gift of Jesus, his Son, our Savior! Jesus promises peace. Jesus provides peace. Our sins pile up every day. We do not deserve to come before the cross of Christ with our sinful baggage. We are not worthy to come before God’s throne of grace seeking his love and forgiveness. BUT that is exactly what the believer is invited to do. We have God’s peace. This peace is undeserved. It is peace that we cannot earn. It is God’s free gift to us and for us. "Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand"(ROMANS 5:1,2a). We are saved by grace.
F. Heaven forbid that you or I or anyone else might think that we can buy our way into heaven. The psalmist reminds us the price of a soul is too costly. No man can redeem the life of another. Once again, our loving Lord and Savior Jesus Christ promises and provides divine peace. "But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed"(ISAIAH 53:5). Our sins are paid for. God’s peace is ours, free.
JESUS’ PROMISE PROVIDES PEACE to all who love God’s teachings.
II. PEACE WITH THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
A. In these verses Jesus’ words are meant for the comfort and encouragement of his disciples.
1. Verse 25. Jesus would soon leave them when he is crucified and is laid in the tomb.