March 21, 2008
By Pastor Lee Hemen
“But a time is coming, and has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:32-33)
I find it really amazing that Jesus took the time to relate to His disciples that they would not only disown Him, but they would run for their lives as well. In fact, they would get so distressed and depressed over the situation that they would head home instead of relying on His words that He had related to them over and over again. Looking back we can think, “Man, were these guys dense or what?” However the same is perfectly true for many Christians in our day and age. Here’s what I mean: We come to Christ because we need Him to sooth us, comfort us, or pat us on the head and say to our weary souls, “There, there, everything is going to be all right.” And it is for a few days, but then life comes crashing back into our lives and we quickly go our separate ways. We head back to the comfort of our “home,” where justified sin and self-reliance dwell.
When the first missiles of hardship, doubt, or spiritual warfare shoot their fiery darts across our bow, we head for the hills forgetting that Jesus also promised, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may know peace.” It is only in Jesus Christ we find and discover what real peace is all about. It is not the peace that does away with hardship, pain, or spiritual suffering. “In this world you will have trouble. But [we are to] take heart! [Jesus has] overcome the world!” We quickly forget that Jesus taught, “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5) Apart from Jesus we will run sacred, we will head home when troubles come our way, we will scatter when faced with tough times.
Just as Jesus did not depend on His fair-weather-friends, because He knew His Father was with Him no matter what happened, we can depend on Him. The world would soon beat, berate, and batter Him physically, emotionally, and spiritually but He took heart. Why? He had overcome the world and anything it could throw at Him. He did not rely on others, but on what He knew about God to be true! Herein is the truth that Jesus wants all of us to understand today, on this “Good Friday,” that we may face all kinds of temptations, sorrow, and suffering but we can take heart because He has overcome the world! And, because Jesus has overcome we can as well.
Therefore take heart little tired sin-sorrowful soul, you do not need to run away, Jesus your Redeemer has overcome the world so that you can too!
NOTE: This article is copyrighted by Pastor Lee Hemen © 2008 and the property of Pastor Lee Hemen. You are welcome to copy it, email it, or use it but please if you copy it, email it, or use it you must do so in its entirety. This devotional will follow Morning by Morning by C H Spurgeon. You may use it however you desire.