Posted by: randydunning | January 16, 2008

Day 16 | John 16

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Text: John 16

Key Verse: 7
“But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you.”

Reflection:
I’m not sure that the disciples were convinced by this statement of Jesus. How could it possibly be to their advantage that he leave them? They had abandoned everything (families, jobs, community, etc.) to follow him and now he’s threatening to leave and telling them it is good for them.

I suppose the disciples felt like children who go off to summer camp for the first time. Just as the parents are about to drive away for the week, a panic sets in. Seeing their baby fighting back tears, mom or dad says to their little boy or girl, “Don’t worry. This will be good for you. You’ll have a great time!” At that moment, such a truth is quite inconceivable. Yet as with most children, who by week’s end have matured and gained confidence, so the disciples later realized how God’s power could live within them and they could be overcomers.

If Christ were to remain physically on earth the disciples would never have known the complete power of God. At this point they saw that power living in one person and it was awesome to behold. But what God desired (and still desires) is to have that power residing in millions of people, not just one. To the disciples at this point, the specter of it being advantageous for Jesus to depart was a great mystery. But Paul later discloses what the early believers all experienced:
        
“…the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
Colossians 1:26, 27 (NASB)

Prayer:
Lord, I often struggle to believe there is enough of Christ’s power in me to overcome difficult situations! Remind me in difficult moments that You have sent the Holy Spirit for such times, that I might overcome wrong attitudes and actions and, instead, follow the ways of Jesus. May I hope in Him who lives in me and who is greater than all that is in the world around me.

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Responses

  1. I was watching “The Passion” last night and that same theme of the helplessness of the disciples was evident. It seems real to me that they would be frightened and bewildered by much of what was happening toward then end of Jesus’ ministry.

    Trusting and avoiding trying to play God in my own life are constant struggles. This points to the fact that I rarely rely on Christ as I go through my day. I’m too much under my own power.

    I echo your prayer – Thanks!


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