Worship VIII Day 15 There Was Jesus: Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper Days

Finding the original intent of Scripture and making good application to our everyday lives as we become equipped to correctly handle the Word of Truth!

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The Questions

1) Why did Jesus correct the disciples’ statement of faith? (verse 31)

2) Why was Jesus’s declaration of peace significant in that moment? (verses 32-33)

3) How does Christ’s victory over the world impact His disciples? (verse 33)

John 16:29-33

His disciples said, “Look, now you’re speaking plainly and not using any figurative language. 30 Now we know that you know everything and don’t need anyone to question you. By this we believe that you came from God.”

31 Jesus responded to them, “Do you now believe? 32 Indeed, an hour is coming, and has come, when each of you will be scattered to his own home, and you will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me. 33 I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”

Original Intent

1) Why did Jesus correct the disciples’ statement of faith? (verse 31)
Little did the  disciples know that in a mere 24-hours their whole world would be torn asunder. What we now know as the “Last Supper” was, in the disciples’ minds, a celebratory dinner capping off a victorious week. Jesus’ triumphal entry into    Jerusalem was met with crowds crying Hosanna, meaning, blessed is He who comes in the Name of the Lord, and waving palm branches. (John 12) Some  Greeks (non-Jews) encountered Jesus and His disciples that day, during which, God’s voice came from Heaven emphasizing Jesus’ divinity as He declared He would continue glorifying the Name of the Lord through Jesus. (John 12:27-28) People paying homage, God’s approving voice from Heaven, and Jesus speaking of Himself being lifted up (John 12:30) all felt definitively victorious to the disciples. Despite the undertone of victory, Jesus falls into somber moods throughout the day; surely the disciples were confused! The 12 men had walked with Jesus for three years and here they  stood on the eve of seeing their loyalty to Jesus pay off. Power, authority, fame, and riches were surely just over the horizon as visions of an earthly kingdom played in their minds. In stark contrast, the great all-knowing God understood what was coming through His sacrifice. Jesus declared to His beloved friends how they would soon feel lost and be scattered as everything they once had confidence in would be shaken and destroyed. God declares the END from the BEGINNING, Jesus uttered the words, “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.” (verse 33)

2) Why was Jesus’s declaration of peace significant in that moment? (verses 32-33)
As physical darkness covered the land, great spiritual darkness had already begun descending all around the disciples, unaware as they were. Satan himself had taken possession of one of the original twelve disciples, Judas, to complete Christ’s betrayal. While the disciples had visions of a new earthly kingdom coming to fruition, Jesus had already begun battling unfathomable spiritual darkness that would soon break out into the physical world. In the midst of this temporary celebration Jesus, the living Word declared, “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.” (verse 33). The disciple John, wrote in his gospel story, “All things were created through Him, and apart from Him not one thing was created that has been created.” (John 1:3) Jesus, in the midst of darkness, declared peace (shalom) and victory for the disciples, even though, at the time, they saw no need for peace. Isaiah 46:8-10 says, “Remember this and be brave; take it to heart, you transgressors! Remember what happened long ago, for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and no one is like Me. I declare the end from the beginning, and from long ago what is not yet done, saying: My plan will take place, and I will do all My will.” Jesus’ purpose was to preserve His flock even as they were attacked by the enemy of their souls. Notice Jesus didn’t keep them from the attack, but declared their victory and peace in the end. For trials and tribulations will come but count it all joy when you meet trials of various kinds for in the end it will perfect your faith. (James 1:2-4)

3) How does Christ’s victory over the world impact His disciples? (verse 33)
That evening, the disciples were reveling in false peace. They had plenty of money in their money bags. The fame of their Master had spread beyond Judea and crowds had lined the streets proclaiming Hosanna to Jesus. The Pharisees and Sadducees could no longer openly oppose Jesus without inciting the crowds’ wrath. Money, power, and respect was theirs. To them, this was their just reward for three years of itinerant preaching. What they didn’t know was that money, power, and respect would all soon be shaken. The disciples would be scattered in the midst of a dark garden as Roman soldiers escorted Jesus away to His death. They would remember the missed opportunity to watch and pray with Christ for just a little while. (Matthew 26:40) They would remember that Christ predicted their denials and their fleeing, fearful departures. Confusion, guilt, and shame would descend as they would watch Jesus, from a safe distance, be beaten, tried, and crucified. What they couldn’t possibly have known in those dark moments was the reality of God battling for their souls as He laid Himself down for their sin. The tribulation of their souls was part of God’s redemptive work to save us all in the end. The victory that overcomes the world is not won in times of peace. The story of that night changed the course of the world, it couldn’t have been written any other way, nor could the Hope birthed from Christ’s defeat-turned-unshakable-victory be destroyed, even by the enemy!

Everyday Application

1) Why did Jesus correct the disciples’ statement of faith? (verse 31)
The saying goes that “life” happens to everyone; our common everyday experiences have a way of hitting us when we least expect it. Just when everything seems to finally fall in place, “life” hits us with a one-two punch. If you are a follower of Christ, Jesus warns us our enemy will make sure we receive a double portion of troubles. (Mark 4:17) It’s easy to forget God’s warning that hard times will come as we commit to following Him. We easily feel entitled to an easy life! In times of peace and comfort, declarations of faith are easy to say. Just like us, the disciples declared from their comfort, “Now we know that you know everything and don’t need anyone to question you. By this we believe that you came from God.” (John 16:30) Yet that very night, when everything fell apart, they no longer knew for sure if Jesus was God. Surely, if Jesus was God then chaos shouldn’t be happening! If Jesus is God, why is my marriage falling apart? If Jesus is really God, why did my prayers for my loved one’s healing seem to fall on deaf ears of the Divine? In the midst of our dark night of the soul, provision has been made for our strength, peace, and power to overcome even this season of struggle. Paul said to the Philippians, “Because of Him I have suffered the loss of all things and consider them as dung, so that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own from the law, but one that is through faith in Christ—the righteousness from God based on faith. My goal is to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to His death.” (Philippians 3:8-10) We can’t experience the power and victory of Christ’s resurrection unless we share in His suffering as well. Yet, in the midst of trial and struggle, God provides us with the grace gifts of peace and strength through the valley of the shadow of death. As we surrender our trust to Him, the God whom we know and rely on, He perfects our faith to glorify His name in our lives.

2) Why was Jesus’s declaration of peace significant in that moment? (verses 32-33)
One of my favorite hymns is, It Is Well With My Soul. The song begins, “When peace like a river attendeth my way, when sorrow like sea billows roll, whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say it is well, it is well with my soul.” How was the author of that song able to declare peace in the wake of losing all his children to sickness and death? His God was greater than his losses, significant though they were. Jesus Christ is our Prince of Peace. Strong’s Bible concordance defines peace as “being whole; a harmonious state of soul and mind.” God’s peace brings shalom to our whole being. Mark’s gospel records how the disciples were caught in a windstorm at sea with waves so fierce they began filling the boat. The disciples were in real danger of sinking into the depths of the sea. Meanwhile, Jesus seemed oblivious to their peril. The disciples screamed in terror and frustration, “Teacher! Don’t You care that we are going to die?” (Mark 4:38) How many times have we felt God neither saw the waves of life nor cared about our imminent peril? In the center of our storms, Jesus speaks as He did to the disciples, “Peace! Be still!” (verse 39, ESV) The Lord God commands His peace to settle our souls and stillness to overpower the chaos threatening to drown us in despair. Jesus says that IN Him we will have peace. (John 16:33) The prophet Isaiah declared of God, “You will keep the mind that is dependent on You in perfect peace, for it is trusting in You. Trust in the Lord forever, because in the Lord, the Lord himself, is an everlasting rock!” (Isaiah 26:3-4) The waves of life, no matter how fierce, can never wash away the solid rock of Christ Jesus our Lord.

3) How does Christ’s victory over the world impact His disciples? (verse 33)
There was a song I heard growing up called, “Money, Power, & Respect.” It sang of these 3 pillars as the keys to life. The world preaches this mantra over and over again from the cradle to the grave. The signs of a good life are money in the bank, power on the job from climbing the corporate ladder, and the respect of both peers and haters. Those who walk the broad path in life chase these three pillars. Often, this ideology seeps into Christian thinking and we begin believing that prosperity is the sign of a blessed life. Jesus warned us that the cares of life and the deceitfulness of riches can lure us away from the truth of the gospel, making its power in us unfruitful. (Mark 4:19) On the night of the Last Supper, the disciples celebrated everything a “happy life” could ask for, thinking they had overcome the world. There is a difference between God’s peace and the world’s peace. Fake peace” from the world depends on your current circumstances, its deceit provides the illusion that you are in control. God’s peace, however, does not hang on your current life scene. In fact, the peace of God shines brightest when we are in situations far beyond our control. Jesus told the disciples that night, “Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Don’t let your heart be troubled or fearful.” (John 14:27) Only God’s peace has the power to surpass all comprehension, guarding our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:7)

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Digging Deeper is for Everyone!

1) Take this passage (or any other passage).
2) Read it, and the verses around it,
several times
3) Write down your questions
as you think of them.
4) Ask specific culture related questions and be ready to dig around for your answers. Google them, use www.studylight.org, or look them up in a study Bible and read the footnotes (click on the little letters next to a word and it will show you
other related verses!). (www.esvbible.org)
5) Check your applications with other trusted Christians that you are in community with and embrace the fullness of God
in your everyday!

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Why Dig Deeper?

Finding the original meaning is a huge deal when we study Scripture and can make all the difference in our understanding as we apply God’s truths to our everyday lives.

In our modern-day relationships, we want people to understand our original intention as we communicate; how much more so between God and humanity?!

Here’s a little bit more on why we take Digging Deeper so seriously.

Study Tools

We love getting help while we study and www.studylight.org is one of many excellent resources, providing the original Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament) with an English translation.

Want to know more about a specific word in a verse? Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Discover “origin”, “definition” and hear the original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!

Want more background? Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))

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