Our work in Uganda is based on putting the Gospel of John into the hands of families that are hungry for the Word of God and the hope of His promise. In preparation for our upcoming crusade in Uganda I have been spending quality time in John’s book and the other morning I was reading Chapter 14 and reflecting on some notes I had written in the margin. They followed under the heading I had written … Belief is the key to a trouble-free heart.
The notes were broken down into several key reasons not to be troubled. It was a great reminder for the time that we as the bride of Christ find ourselves, being challenged on all fronts. Here are those keys …
Belief In Heaven
John 14:1-4 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” ESV
Back in 13:33 Jesus said just to opposite to the Jews … ‘Where I am going you cannot come.’ What changed? Jesus simply addressed His disciples … Believe in God; believe also in me. The Jews believed in God but they didn’t believe in Jesus. That belief is the key to the certainty that God has prepared a place in heaven for His Son’s bride; a place to be with her bridegroom (her husband) forever … heaven. No matter how difficult the journey becomes, no one can take that certainty away from us.
Knowing The Father
John 14:7-11 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” 8 Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” 9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. ESV
Once again, Jesus declares the separation between those who “believe” and those who do not. Before His disciples knew Him they did not know the Father, but after believing they do know Him because … Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. Consider the word used in verse 11 to know. Ginosko is used in two different ways. If you had Known (recognized) and From now on you do Know him. In the second instance, you now “understand” because you believe. Belief in Jesus is belief in the Father and all that the Father has said. What a promise!
John 14:13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. ESV
1 John 5:15 And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. ESV
Prayer is our direct line to Jesus and therefore to the Father. These scriptures make it clear that, first and foremost, we know that He “hears” us. And if He hears us, He promises that whatever we ask He will do. But we need to keep these verses in context as it qualifies His answer. Look back at verse 12…
John 14:12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. ESV
Jesus makes it clear that what He does for us in response to our request is directly tied to “works” that are the same works Jesus did and greater. In other words, works that are in the will of God … works that glorify the Father in the Son. We are the bride of Christ because we believe in Him. As a result, our prayers are to be for what we need to accomplish the will of God that our bridegroom will glorify the Father … share the Gospel and make disciples.
The Holy Spirit
John 14:16 -18 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. ESV
Jesus was the first comforter and we have been given the second comforter who “helps” us on our journey to spiritual maturity … all the way to the end and beyond. Think about that! The Holy Spirit was given to us the moment we believed and He will be helping us in heaven … forever. I don’t know what that means but I can only guess that our journey in eternity will involve things for which we need His help. However, I know why we need His strength, power, and wisdom here on this part of our journey…
Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” ESV
His presence will ensure that we have a trouble-free heart in the process. And that leads us to #5…
John 14:27 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. ESV
When we believe in the Word of God and His promises, we know that Heaven is our home; we know the Father because we have seen Jesus in God’ Word; we have been given a direct line of communication with the Father through Prayer; we have been given all we need in this life and beyond in the help of the Holy Spirit; and we have been given the key to keeping our heart trouble-free … Peace. And that peace is not the world’s temporary peace, it is Jesus’ peace, eternal peace that brings wholeness, security, prosperity, and the promise that …
John 14:1-5 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” ESV
Yes … Belief is the key to a trouble-free heart.