John 14  •  7 min. read  •  grade level: 6
John 14
The disciples had reason to be troubled. Judas had betrayed his Master; Peter and the rest were soon to forsake Jesus and deny Him. But the Lord did not leave them under this cloud, though His troubles were many times greater.
The flesh had proved itself to be incompetent, but now He gave them the sure resource of faith and what lies beyond for faith. He said, "Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in Me." If they had believed in God they could also believe in Him. "In My Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you."
Grace is wonderful, because it meets all of our needs. But to be able by faith to read the heart of Jesus, and that He wants us to, is beyond our fondest thoughts.
How we fail today because we surround ourselves with the devices of men for security, when the Lord is letting us know that not only our present circumstances are provided for, but that He desires our confidence in believing that all of the riches of heaven are ours, because we now belong to heaven and have the portion of the bride with the bridegroom. "Is thine heart right, as my heart is with thy heart?" 2 Kings 10:1515And when he was departed thence, he lighted on Jehonadab the son of Rechab coming to meet him: and he saluted him, and said to him, Is thine heart right, as my heart is with thy heart? And Jehonadab answered, It is. If it be, give me thine hand. And he gave him his hand; and he took him up to him into the chariot. (2 Kings 10:15). How we must, with shame, admit that often we put our trust in men. Do we trust men in case the Lord should fail us? God forbid.
Think of it: "If it were not so, I would have told you." He anticipated that the disciples (and we too) expected to be with Him in His Father's house. There were many mansions; His presence in heaven has made room for repentant, sinful man, in a new power of life in us.
Jesus will come for us Himself. How much better to be with Jesus before the Father, than for Jesus to be with us on earth. Yet we have the divine Comforter to lead us into all of the truth while He is gone. Also, greater works would the disciples do, after the Comforter was come. These words not only comforted the hearts of Jesus' disciples at that time, but down through the ages they have comforted myriads who are waiting for the Savior to come for them.
Chapters 14, 15 and 16 are sometimes spoken of as Christ's upper-room ministry to His eleven disciples. They may surely carry such a title, because never before had the human ear heard what the disciples heard at that time.
Chapter 13 was the preparation of the disciples for that ministry. They needed all sins Judged and cleansing from the defilement of their way through this world, in order to enter profitably into that holy session (or sessions) in the presence of Jesus. He, just before the cross, was revealing in a special way His Father and His Father's home to them.
Jesus Is the Way
The session began with a discourse between Thomas, Philip and Jesus. Only in John's gospel do we hear from the lesser apostles, those who have not given written ministry. Thomas inquired where Jesus was going and could they know the way for themselves. Jesus answered, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me," and that by knowing Him, they would know the Father also.
To have truth laid out in an orderly way by writing is good, but to sense the mind of Christ, by being in His presence, is much better. This is what Mary did when she sat at Jesus' feet and heard His Word from His own lips. She was the only one who sensed what was to take place in regard to His death.
Philip asked, "Show us the Father, and it sufficeth us." Jesus said, I have been with you for a long time, but you have not known Me. "He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father."
If the Holy Spirit dwells in us and we walk in obedience, the Father will make His abode in us-both the Father and the Son. The commandments of Christ direct and express the life of one who lives by the Spirit.
It is interesting how high and lofty are the questions asked, after the disciples have had their feet washed. Does this not show the necessity of being done with the dust collected in our daily walk? Washing one another's feet is in order, so that we can enjoy heavenly ministry.
Jesus said to them, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto My Father." The greater works came at Pentecost and are connected with Christianity.
Whatever we ask in His name He will do.
The Spirit of Truth
The expression, "the Spirit of truth," is mentioned three times in Scripture: one time in each of chapters 14, 15 and 16 of John's gospel.
In chapter 14 the Father sends the Spirit of truth, because Christ is gone away from earth to heaven. In chapter 15 the Son of God, who as man is now Lord of all, sends the Spirit of truth (1 Peter 3:2222Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him. (1 Peter 3:22)). In chapter 16 the Spirit of truth comes on His own. Thus we have the three Persons of the Godhead engaged in the protection, comfort and teaching of those who belong to Christ. When the soul learns this, he will no longer lean on man for comfort and protection. But let us remember that He is "the truth," the subject of all of the Holy Spirit's ministry.
There is a certain kind of peace, known only by those who have left this world to follow Jesus only. We cannot follow Jesus by ourselves; we need the power of the Spirit of truth. This supposes communion and waiting on God for wisdom and strength.
A proper child not only obeys his father's will, but acquires a knowledge of that will by being obedient to it. How much we learn in our inner being by obedience. Let us not repeat a disobedience.
Jesus speaks of His peace that He gives to His disciples. It is not the peace found in our circumstances, no matter how thankful we should be for that peace. It is a peace found in following Jesus in obedience and dependence-imitating the pattern of His life down here, walking as He walked, walking in His steps. This is solid peace, no matter how great the storms are that rage around our souls. But be sure that Jesus is in the ship with us. It could be expressed in this way: we trust Him for everything.
We are not to let our hearts be troubled, no matter how trying the circumstances are. There is much to cause us to be afraid. Is Jesus able for this-for every aspect of our lives and circumstances? God loves us and knows our every step; to trust in anyone or anything else will only bring sorrow.
Jesus would not leave His people as orphans. His presence in Spirit will be enough to keep us. In this world we have the same nature and life as Jesus has. In John it is not union, as taught in Ephesians, where it is the relationship between Christ and His bride.
Jesus tells His disciples of His going away and coming again to them. This could bring real, deep sorrow to those who have accompanied Him for three-and-a-half years. But, for the disciples, there is something new. They are to rejoice with Him, because He is going to the Father.
Jesus tells His disciples all that they need to know, so that as events take place, they will believe. In order to believe spiritually, they must have His Word to lean on.
Satan Returns
Satan had left Jesus after tempting Him in the wilderness. Jesus had commanded, "Get thee hence, Satan." At this crucial time the prince of this world returned, but he could find nothing in Jesus, who cannot sin. The Lord, at the Father's command, went on to Gethsemane. At the cross Satan used His last efforts to overcome Jesus by deceit.