Summary: Before Christ would go to the Cross, he brought words of comfort to his disciples. He reminded them of his flag, his family, and his faith.
“The Green Green Grass of Home”
Introduction: Someone sent me a picture that is the center frame for this message. It was a photograph of an American soldier in Iraq. He was kneeling in front of his tent, trimming a small piece of grass that he had grown on the dessert floor. Apparently, he had requested from his wife that she send him some grass seed, soil, and fertilizer. She did. Now that the small piece of grass has been grown, this soldiers comrades have begun a tradition to walk upon this sacred grass before heading out on a mission. It reminds them of why they are fighting. It reminds them of home.
Jesus had just mentioned that he would be departing from his disciple by way of the cross. The disciples very deeply troubled. So Jesus gave them the following message:
Words of comfort…
1. Let me tell you about my flag…
Jesus began talking about home. Much like the soldier in the photograph, Jesus wanted to visit thoughts of home before he would begin his mission of bearing our sins at the cross.
Three things about my homeland:
1. My homeland is beautiful.
I believe that when Jesus began talking about mansions in Heaven, he was talking about mansions in Heaven. When I read through the Book of Revelation, there is no doubt in my mind that Heaven is going to be a beautiful place.
My wife and I are taking in a high school foreign exchange student from South Korea this year. Before Sung Kwang Kim came to us, we would email back and forth. Sung, wanted to know all about the beauty of America. Jesus, in much the same way, wanted his disciples to know how beautiful Heaven was going to be.
2. My homeland is under construction.
Jesus said, I go and prepare a place for you. Jesus would do that by dying for us on the cross. But I also believe that Heaven is a place under construction. God can only build our mansions with the material send on ahead? Are you laying up treasure in Heaven?
3. My homeland is a land of peace.
It is called the Father’s house. Satan is the god of this world. Much like our soldiers in Iraq, we too are in a baron wilderness of a world. In Heaven the Father has everything under his complete control. Everything is guided by his will. Heaven is a land of peace.
2. Let me tell you about my family…
Three things about the family of Christ:
1. About God the Father…
Sung Kwang Kim wanted me to email him pictures of my family. He wanted to know all about my sons and daughters, and grand children.
Jesus wanted his disciple to know all about his family in Heaven. He begins by talking about his father in Heaven. Jesus said that he was speaking the words that his father had given to him, and that his power for the miracles that he performed was from the power given to him by the Father.
2. About God the Son…
Jesus is God the Son. Anyone who doubts the deity of Christ, has not yet come into an understanding of John 14. Jesus is the visible of the trinity. He is God in the flesh. He told Philip, if you have seen me, you have seen the Father. And that, the only way to see the Father was through him!
3. About God the Spirit…
Jesus said that he would be leaving them soon, but that he would send them another comforter. This comforter would be the Holy Spirit. The family of God is a trinity. Jesus tried to explain to his disciples about his family.
Finally, 3. Let me tell you about my faith…
Three things about your mission:
1. Your mission is to get into Christ.
If you believe in God the Father, “then,” Jesus said, “believe also in me.” That word in means into me. Just as Christ was in the Father, he wants you and I to be in him. Is Christ in you? Either the Holy Spirit of God is on the inside of your heart’s door saying that you are saved, or he is on the outside of your heart’s door knocking and pleading for admission.
2. Your mission is to let the Christ in you to be seen by others.
Just as the Jesus revealed to the world his Father through his words and deeds, we are to let Christ be seen in us. That statement should be your life’s mission: to let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me!
3. Your mission is to get the gospel out to others.
Our soldiers are on a mission in Iraq. It is a mission of setting people free. You and I are on a mission too. We are soldiers of the cross. Our mission is to bring deliverance to those who are in bondage to the Devil. We have the power to set people free. We have the power through the message of the gospel to bring people to the Father’s House!