Key Text: John 16:25-33

In the thirty-two verses of chapter 16 in John’s gospel, the word ‘things’ is mentioned no less than ten times. Jesus said these things, He would do these things, He had many things to say, talked about things to come, – disciples concluded ‘you know all things.

It begs the question: What ‘things’ has Jesus just told His disciples?

He was honest about the pain His disciples would endure but also honest about the future Joy to come. Jesus’ final words in this conversation with His disciples, are also an encouragement to us today: ‘Take heart; I have overcome the world’

Jesus says this so that in Him, His disciples might have peace because in the world they will experience adversity, grief, heartache, uncertainty, anxiety and misery, summed up in one word …tribulation.

Firstly, note where the source of our peace is found …in Him. Not in our wealth, intellect, possessions, position, relationships, fame, our children

John 14:25-28 is almost a repeat of John 16. “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. You heard me say to you, ‘I am going away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I.

We are in uncertain times where economies are being disrupted, Politics are more polarised, weather systems are devastatingly unpredictable and wars causing destruction and displacement on an unprecedented humanitarian scale. And in the midst of all this people are asking where is God/Jesus in all this? Or worse still declaring that there is no God.

Jesus’ answer to all this is, He is going away and the disciples concern is not that He is going away but what He meant when He said ‘a little while’ Many people have no concern that Jesus is gone and that His presence is not in their lives. Then wonder why when they look at the world and events they despair, become downcast, depressed and hopeless.

Not once did the disciples stop to consider what Jesus’ going away would mean for Him. Because if they had like us they would find encouragement because His going away will release the coming of Holy Spirit.- take heart.

Jesus is not implying that the two persons Son and Holy spirit cannot be co-present because the triunity of God means that  both (all three) are always present. But Jesus going to the Father, was not a spatial move but a spiritual one that activated the work of Holy Spirit in the world and our lives.

Where is Jesus in all the troubles of this world?…releasing the powers of the promised kingdom of God into our world. Unlike John the Baptiser who only pointed the way to Jesus, Holy Spirit brings Him to us that we can know Him. In the midst of trouble and conflict

There are three reasons for fullness of our joy 24

We Have Jesus’ Personal Presence

Because the presence of Jesus is rooted in the resurrection, an event which has happened in history and which therefore can never be undone, it is a joy that no one will take away from us 22

Nothing in heaven, earth or hell can separate us from the love of the presence of the risen Jesus. The world may take our life but they cannot take Christ from our hearts. This is why Apostle Paul was able to say: For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39

When Jesus went, the comforter came to seal in us the assurance of our salvation by living in us. This thing is the personal presence of Jesus that is ours. Amen!

We have His Unlimited Provision

This unlimited provision is released through prayer. v.24 Up to this point the disciples had brought their requests directly to Jesus and had been encouraged by His prayers for them to the Father.

His going away changed all the terms of their and our relationship with the Father. By His death and resurrection, Jesus has removed the barrier of sin and established a new relationship in which we are able to speak with confidence, to address the Father directly through Him. 23

Hebrews 4:16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Simply on the basis of Jesus’ name it demonstrates our reliance on His sacrifice to cover our sin and deal with our unworthiness, we can be assured ‘that whatever you ask of the Father in my name, He will give it to you.’ 23 When we ask those things that glorifies the Father not ourselves.

This thing is the kind of prayer that releases the boundless provision of God.

Prayers in Jesus Name, Assures Us That the Father Loves Us. 26-27

 Answered prayer is the assurance that God loves us and is where we find peace. Our peace is not in the fact that we shall overcome, it’s in the fact that He has overcome. This thing is that we can take heart because he has overcome.

How will we take hold of these things today?

Will we allow the joy to be made full in us?

Will we allow courage and hope to rise up in us?

Will we claim the peace of God when we go through tough situations by trusting in Jesus?

Will we not give up when you go through hard times because know that Jesus is sovereign, Lord over all and has overcome?

Will we expect the personal presence of Jesus to walk with us when we are in trouble?