Summary: Jesus teaches us about peace, a perfect place he has prepared for us, and promises he will return so that we spend eternity with him.
Text: “Let not your heart be troubled…” (John 14:1).
What kind of life do you think Jesus wants us to live? Does He want us to be worried and uptight? Does He want us to dwell on things that will probably never come about? Does He want us to waste our time feeling sorry for ourselves? Does He want us to complain about what we don’t have? I don’t think so.
When we are worried and deeply concerned about such issues, we cannot be at peace with ourselves, with anyone else, or with God Himself. There is a story about a paralyzed man who finally found the answer to his troubled heart.
Story: “For Tired Nerves”
A man, paralyzed by many anxieties and worries and unable to sleep at night, was so tired in mind and body that he was ready for anything. When he was at the last gasp, he met a Christian friend who told him that if he would only pray about it all, he would find some relief.
That night he prayed for the first time for years. He told God everything about himself. And while he was praying he fell asleep. When he woke up hours later he knew he had found his cure. He told his doctor: “I just tell Jesus about my worries. I turn them all over to Him.” The doctor replied, “If all my nerve patients would only to that, I should be a poorer man.”
----Rev. F. H. Pickering
You and I waste much time thinking and worrying about what might happen and what we can do about it. Jesus has given us the solution to our problem more than once. In His Word, He talks to us about a lasting peace, a perfect place and a promise that cannot be broken.
Prior to the words of our Scripture Reading, Jesus told His disciples “The hour has come that the Son of Man should be glorified” (John 12:23). He used the illustration of the grain of wheat.
Wheat was something common and they knew it was planted in the ground and then at the right time and under the right conditions it would spring forth from the ground and could be cut and processed for human use.
If the wheat was not planted it would not produce much grain. In other words, it had to fall into the ground and die or it would not benefit anyone. By the same token, the person who loves his worldly life and does nothing concerning his spiritual life is like the grain of wheat that is not planted in the ground.
The grain of wheat planted in the ground serves God by becoming food for His children. The person who follows Jesus and humbles himself to the status of servant shows forth love and will be honored by the Father. Serving Jesus raises us to an honorable level or position in His kingdom.
As Jesus talked to his disciples, and told them about what was going to happen, His heart became heavy. In fact Jesus said, “Now My soul is troubled and what shall I say? ‘Father, Save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour” (John 12:27).
Jesus knew the crucifixion was not far away. He knew the suffering He would go through. He could feel the pain and agony that would go through His body. He dreaded the thought because He was human.
Any human being facing this ordeal would do anything to get out of it. We are fortunate and lucky we do not have to face what Jesus faced. Man was responsible for what was to happen, but Jesus had so much for love for us that He was willing to accept all the suffering and pain.
We do not have to go to the Cross because Jesus went in our place. We don’t have to shed our blood because He shed his for each one of us. We don’t have to feel the agony of the nails being driven into our hands and feet because He took our place.
Jesus doesn’t want us to live troubled lives, but instead He wants our hearts to be at peace. He doesn’t want us to worry about what will happen to us after this earthly life is over or where we will spend eternity. He promises us that we will spend eternity with Him. He said, “...where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:3).
Jesus then said, “Father, glorify Your name.” And at that very moment, like thunder, God spoke and said, “I have both glorified it and will glorify it again” (John 12:28). The disciples and the other people who heard these words really did not understand what had just happened.
What would you have thought if you had been standing in that crowd? Would you have said, “Oh well, I guess it was thunder or I did not hear what I thought I heard? No big deal, it was probably just my imagination.” Would you have really believed it was God speaking and looked to Him in worship and praise?