Summary: Peace comes through Christ in spite of our circumstances.
All around are signs people have troubled hearts. In the United States of America, it’s common for Congress and the president to disagree on the country’s budget. Occasionally it reaches the point where there is the threat of the federal government shutting down.
Prison overcrowding is a continual challenge. The United States locks up a greater share of its residents than any other nation. The crime rate continues to rise in inner cities as people fight for existence.
The family is in decline. Fifty percent of all marriages end in divorce. Sexual immorality is rampant. Sex outside of marriage and unfaithfulness within marriage are both common occurrences. Teen pregnancies are extrememly high as well as are the number of single parent families. Children suffer the effects of absent fathers.
Drug use is also high. Some states are lobbying for legalizing medical marijuana. Papers are filled with the news of drug arrests and crimes committed for the sake of drug use. Natural disasters destroy homes and belongings of people. Things they’ve worked for all their lives are being swept away.
Ethnic and religious rivalries have impacted many countries. And the world is still fighting the war against terrorism.
Examples of troubled hearts and why they are are rife. In our passage, Jesus instructs his disciples and us not to let our hearts be troubled. The disciples had reason for troubled hearts. One of them would betray Jesus with a kiss and sell him to the authorities. Another would deny on three occasions he even knew Jesus. Perhaps the most troubling thing is Jesus would soon leave them to return to heaven and they couldn’t go with him.
Three ultimate cures are found in these verses. They are ultimate cures for none of them may necessarily cure or bring relief from suffering, strife, trials or tribulations in this life. They are ultimately, however, the cure for troubled hearts.
I. TRUST CHRIST
Jesus told them not to let their hearts be troubled. He instructs them to believe in God and also in him. This then is the first ultimate cure for troubled hearts. We cannot separate the two for a belief in God must encompass a belief in his Son Jesus Christ.
The disciples were sick over what Jesus told them. He said one of them would betray him and another would deny him. He also told them he would soon leave and they couldn’t go with him. In the midst of this troubling time, he gives them an antidote-believe in him and God.
Already their world must have seemed empty because he said he was leaving. Their faith in him would keep their world from becoming a haunted house. In spite of all that would take place, he encourages them to trust in the goodness of God. Even though he would leave, they could and should continue to believe. Their strong belief in him would see them through his crucifixion and death.
We too need to listen to Jesus’ challenge to believe in God and him. It’s the ultimate cure for troubled hearts. To believe in one is to believe in both because Jesus says we can’t come to the Father except through him. We must trust by faith that he’s the only begotten Son of God. It involves a willingness to repent of our sins. He’s the only one capable of curing the sin problem in our life.