Berean Bible Study Notes

John 14, Part 1



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John 14

John 14:1 The Way, the Truth, and the Life

"Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know."

5 Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?"

6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Why does Jesus start this next section with "Let not your heart be troubled"? Remember what had just happened in the last chapter. Peter was declaring that he would lay down his life, but Jesus had just told him that he would deny the Lord three times before the rooster crowed twice the next morning.

He knows what's coming and how difficult it's going to be for the disciples to watch. They still don't understand what Jesus had really come to do. When they see Him suffer and die, their hearts WILL be troubled. In fact, here is how two of Jesus' followers describe Him after His crucifixion:

Luke 24:19 "He was a prophet, powerful in word and deed before God and all the people. 20 The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; 21 but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel."

When they saw Him suffer and die, they started thinking that He wasn't the Messiah after all. "Believe in me," He tells them and us. Trust me - even when it looks bad. Trust me, even when you don't understand. (Something I need to continually remind myself of). This isn't a suggestion; it's a command. However, it's a command with the power of God in it to allow you to do it! This is the Word of God, and it carries the power to accomplish in you what Jesus is commanding.

John 14:2 In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

The word translated "house" is oikia (oy-kee'-ah). Strongs says it means "properly, a residence (abstractly), but usually (concretely) an abode (literally or figuratively); by implication a family." What does Jesus mean? He's not talking about an actual house but the place where the Father is. Where is that? Heaven!

Now, if we had unlimited time, this is where we'd have a whole study on heaven. In heaven there are many "mansions" in the King James or "rooms" in the NIV. The word means "dwelling place" or "abiding place." It's the same word that appears in verse 23:

John 14:23 Jesus answered and said to him, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.

We're not talking temporary lodging here. This is a forever kind of place.

John 14:2 In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

Jesus created the world in six days, and He's been working on our "forever" dwelling for nearly 2,000 years. Can you imagine? Your future dwelling place is part of the inheritance waiting for you.

Matthew 25:34 "Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

Ephesians 1:18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,

Colossians 3:23 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, 24 since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

1 Peter 1: 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade — kept in heaven for you

Revelation gives us a little taste:

Revelation 21:1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem , coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away."

5 He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!" Then he said, "Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true."

6 He said to me: "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. 7 He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.

10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. 11 It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. 12 It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates. On the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. 13 There were three gates on the east, three on the north, three on the south and three on the west. 14 The wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15 The angel who talked with me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city, its gates and its walls. 16 The city was laid out like a square, as long as it was wide. He measured the city with the rod and found it to be 12,000 stadia in length, and as wide and high as it is long. 17 He measured its wall and it was 144 cubits thick, by man's measurement, which the angel was using. 18 The wall was made of jasper, and the city of pure gold, as pure as glass. 19 The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, 20 the fifth sardonyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst. 21 The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass.

22 I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. 27 Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life.

Revelation 22:1 Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.

 

John 14:2 In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

This isn't just for the disciples there in that room. This is for us, too. And, it's not generically for everybody. Jesus is preparing a place specifically for you. Think about it. No one knows you better. He knows what you're like, what you enjoy. He knows what you consider beautiful. It's going to be the ultimate "extreme home makeover" surprise. Whatever is absolutely perfect for you will be incorporated into the place He's prepared for you. It will be better than anything you could imagine or even think to ask for. This will be HOME in every sense of the word.

This phrase, And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also, is also the traditional expression that the bridegroom makes when the bride has accepted him. Sometimes, he would build a whole new house, but many times, he would add a room onto his father's house. It was actually up to the bridegroom's father to decide whether the room was ready or not. When it finally was, he sent his son to get his bride and bring her back.

We talked a lot about Jewish weddings back in John 2. You can also read many articles here. (use discernment)

In receive you to Myself , the word "receive" here means to "join to oneself." Jesus is speaking of that time that we also call the rapture. The word rapture doesn't appear in our English Bibles, but is taken from the Latin word for "carried off." In Greek, the word is "harpazo." It means to "snatch up" and "claim eagerly":

1 Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

Notice how Paul is using these words as comfort - just as Jesus was doing in the Upper Room. The concept of the harpazo goes along with the "thief" idea of snatching away. The word "harpazo" is used several times in the New Testament. Three other times, it's used in a "rapture" kind of sense, in Acts 8:39, 2 Corinthians 12:2, and Revelation 12:5. You can find the idea of a rapture throughout the Bible. Some people insist that the rapture is not in the Old Testament, but I'm convinced that it is. And, of course, Enoch and Elijah were literally raptured. Plus, there are numerous passages like these:

Isaiah 26:19 Your dead shall live; Together with my dead body they shall arise. Awake and sing, you who dwell in dust; For your dew is like the dew of herbs, And the earth shall cast out the dead. 20 Come, my people, enter your chambers, (This word "chambers" is "cheder" and is the same word used for "bridal chamber." See Psalm 19:5 or Joel 2:16. In normal use, it means "bedroom." Modern Jewish weddings still use the "cheder" canopy.) And shut your doors behind you; Hide yourself, as it were, for a little moment, Until the indignation is past. 21 For behold, the LORD comes out of His place To punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity; The earth will also disclose her blood, And will no more cover her slain.

These are a little less plain, but I believe they're speaking of the same thing:

Psalm 27:5 For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; In the secret place of His tabernacle. He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock.

Zephaniah 1:14 The great day of the LORD is near; It is near and hastens quickly. The noise of the day of the LORD is bitter; There the mighty men shall cry out. 15 That day is a day of wrath, A day of trouble and distress, A day of devastation and desolation, A day of darkness and gloominess, A day of clouds and thick darkness, 16 A day of trumpet and alarm Against the fortified cities And against the high towers. Zephaniah 2:3 Seek the LORD, all you meek of the earth, Who have upheld His justice. Seek righteousness, seek humility. It may be that you will be hidden in the day of the LORD's anger.

There are many, many more. Try looking up "hide" or "hidden." Now, if time was unlimited, we'd jump into a whole study on this, too, but let's move on:

John 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know."

Compare that to the ending of the passage in 1 Thessalonians:

1 Thessalonians 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

Both passages are intended for comfort and both emphasize the same thing. No matter where Jesus is, that's where we will be. We won't ever be separated from Him again. The disciples were shortly to lose Him in a physical sense, and we've never been with Him that way. Yet, we long for the same thing - to be with Jesus. God made us physical people, and we long for that day - even as Job longed, thousands of years ago:

Job 19:25 I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. 26 And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; 27 I myself will see him with my own eyes — I, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!

Now, Jesus adds something that is puzzling. Why does He say this?

John 14:4 And where I go you know, and the way you know."

Thomas speaks up and asks what we probably would have, had we been there:

John 14:5 Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?"

And, Jesus gives the answer we've all heard so many times:

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Don't let the miracle of that statement escape you through sheer familiarity. How much is packed into such simple words! This is the sixth of the seven "I AM" statements in the Gospel of John:

John 6:48
I am the bread of life.

John 8:12
I am the light of the world.

John 10:9
I am the door.

John 10:11
I am the good shepherd.

John 11:25
I am the resurrection and the life.

John 14:6
I am the way, and the truth, and the life.

John 15:1
I am the true vine.

Six is the number of man. Seven is the number of completeness, and we are less than complete. We don't know where we're going, yet we strive forward anyway. We don't know what we're doing, but we fake our way through. We don't even know where we've been. We try to explain our world and each other, and we call it "truth," but deep inside, we know that we don't know.

Jesus reaches into our incompleteness with His answer: I am the way, and the truth, and the life. He is telling us not to worry about not knowing. Just follow Him. Trust Him. Allow Him to lead you and be Lord of your life. The rest will all take care of itself.

Matthew 6:33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

How hard that is for us as women. We wallow in our incompleteness. We seek out our not knowings, not understandings and we dwell on them, probing them over and over like a loose tooth. We are supposed to pray consistently, faithfully, boldly, but we pray with worry - as though God will slip up unless we do it right. We lay awake in the middle of the night, piling up our troubles until they seem insurmountable. "No," says Jesus. "Stop. Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

"I am the way, and the truth, and the life." Dwell on that answer, my beloved friends. Everything you are concerned about - every worry about you or your husband or your children or your life - is answered there.

"I am the way."

The word "way" is hodos (hod-os'). It means "path" or "road" or even "highway." But, here, it carries a spiritual meaning. We get the same idea when we talk about our "Christian walk" or the "righteous road."

Here's what it says in the Vine's Expository Dictionary:

If you study "way" or "path" or "road" in the Bible, you'll start to see that God was making a picture for us. The Psalms are filled with this idea:

Psalm 25:4 Show me Your ways, O LORD; Teach me Your paths. 5 Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the God of my salvation; On You I wait all the day.

Psalm 27:11 Teach me your way , O LORD; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors.

Psalm 37:5 Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this: 6 He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.

Psalm 86:11 Teach me your way , O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.

Proverbs 16:17 The highway of the upright avoids evil; he who guards his way guards his life.

"The Way" of Jesus was prophesied:

Isaiah 35:8 And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way; wicked fools will not go about on it.

The new Christians even adopted "The Way" as a name for their beliefs:

Acts 9:1 Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord's disciples. He went to the high priest 2 and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way , whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem.

Acts 19: 8 Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God. 9 But some of them became obstinate; they refused to believe and publicly maligned the Way.

Acts 19:23 About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way . 24 A silversmith named Demetrius, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought in no little business for the craftsmen. 25 He called them together, along with the workmen in related trades, and said: "Men, you know we receive a good income from this business. 26 And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says that man-made gods are no gods at all.

Acts 24:14 However, I admit that I worship the God of our fathers as a follower of the Way , which they call a sect. I believe everything that agrees with the Law and that is written in the Prophets,

Acts 24:22 Then Felix, who was well acquainted with the Way, adjourned the proceedings. "When Lysias the commander comes," he said, "I will decide your case."

"I am the truth."

What is truth? Don't we, like Pilate, sometimes ask the same thing? How do you define truth? Notice that Jesus does not say "a" truth but "the" truth. There is a reason for that definite article. Jesus is THE truth. I don't know all that that means. I just know what He says. Jesus is THE TRUTH. The one thing I can say for certain is that His words and His actions both perfectly matched.

Try looking up "the truth" at Blueletterbible.org or Biblegateway.com. Then, read each one of those verses with the "Jesus" or "the Lord" in place of the word "truth." Kind of interesting, huh? Suddenly those Scriptures that seem a little hard to understand come into focus. Here are just a few:

1 Peter 1:22 Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart.

James 5:19 My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, 20 remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins.

1 John 1:8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.

In fact, in the case of that last one, who is the "he" referring to in "he is faithful and just?" Correct grammar would seem to suggest that the "he" refers to "the truth" of the previous sentence. Kind of interesting.

1 John 5:20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.

"I am the life."

Someday, if anyone ever says "Get a life" to me because I am a Christian, I am determined to respond, "I have a life. I have THE life." You know, it was Jesus who gave us life to begin with:

John 1:3 All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.

(Side note - I seem to be jumping randomly from New King James to NIV and back again. I will attempt to stay with NKJV. When I look things up on my computer, it automatically puts it into NIV, and I keep forgetting to click NKJV)

Jesus is THE life. In his epistle, John speaks of that life:

1 John 1:1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched — this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. 2 The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us.

Jesus IS our life:

Colossians 3:4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.

John 20:31 but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.

When we trust Jesus for our salvation, we have new life here on earth:

Romans 6:4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, 9 knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. 10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. 11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

John 10:10 I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

Mark 10:29 So Jesus answered and said, "Assuredly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My sake and the gospel's, 30 who shall not receive a hundredfold now in this time — houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions — and in the age to come, eternal life.

1 Peter 1:6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8 whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9 receiving the end of your faith — the salvation of your souls.

Philippians 4:11 I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: 12 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. 13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

And, Jesus will give us eternal life:

John 5:24 "I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life. 25 I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself.

John 11:25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26 and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"

1 John 5: 11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may [continue to] believe in the name of the Son of God.

"I am the way, the truth, and the life" is what Jesus says to us. We just need to keep on hearing and believing it - trusting Him in all things, regardless of what's going on in our heads and in our lives.

OK, let's finally finish that verse:

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

You know, it doesn't get more exclusive than that. Are Christians exclusive? You bet. Do we think we have the only right answer? You bet! We don't say so - Jesus does! There is no other way.

Matthew 7:13 "Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

Acts 4:12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.

 

John 14:7 The Father Revealed

"If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him."

8 Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us."

9 Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, 'Show us the Father'? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. 11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.

Some people deny the Trinity because they refuse to accept Jesus as God. Others deny the Trinity because they cannot accept that God exists in three persons. This is one passage that they use to support that. Now, I do think that sometimes we are guilty of making three Gods out of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. However, these verses are not saying that Jesus IS the Father. The Father is spirit. Jesus is saying, "If you want to know about the Father, look at me. If you want to know about the Father's character, His nature, His attributes, look at me."

John 14:12 The Answered Prayer

"Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.

Wow, how could you possibly do greater works than Jesus? What in the world does He mean? He's not really talking about miracles, although the disciples did do miracles. He's talking about the effectiveness of the Gospel. After Jesus' ascension, He sent the Holy Spirit (which we'll talk about in just a bit). The Holy Spirit, through the Gospel preached by the disciples (and everyone since then), reached thousands and then millions of people and made them believers.

John 14:12 "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.

Wow, that's quite a statement - and taken by itself, has lead to some interesting preaching. However, you can't take the first part of that sentence without the last part: that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You ask for a million dollars in Jesus' name, and you're only going to get it if it brings glory to the Father through the Son. You also can't unhook verse 13 from verse 12. See that word "and?" That's the Greek word "kai," which hooks the last thought, And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son, to the first thought, greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And, of course, you can't eliminate the first criteria, he who believes in Me.

So, what is He saying? He's talking about the works when He's speaking of asking in His name. When we pray for the work of the Gospel (and other works that God has given you to do) in Jesus' name, He will answer you, if you are praying in accordance with His will and for something that will bring glory to the Father. For example, if someone prays, "Lord, in your name we ask that you bring this neighborhood to Yourself. Make them part of your family. Let them hear and believe your Gospel," but inside, he's thinking, "so that this church will be known throughout the land, and I will be famous for my conversions," he's not really looking for the glory of the Father, but of himself and his church.

He does seem to be suggesting that prayer is a very important part of spreading the good news. Even if you've had zero success in telling your loved ones about Jesus, you have this promise: And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you have the right motive for asking, Jesus promises to do it.

John explains more about prayer in his first epistle:

1 John 3:21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. 22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.

1 John 5:14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

Some other verses:

Matthew 7:7 "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. (Note that the asking here is mostly about seeking salvation)

James 4:2 You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have , because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

 

John 14:15 Jesus Promises Another Helper

"If you love Me, keep My commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever — 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.

 If you love me, keep My commandments. You can't say you love Jesus and then deliberately disobey Him. You're not going to be perfect, but if you really love Him, you will try.

John 14:15 "If you love Me, keep My commandments. 16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.

Note how the promise of verse 16 is hooked to the statement in verse 15. However, this is not saying that your works will save you and give you the Holy Spirit. This is like in James - a saving faith will bring forth works. Now, the "another" is important. You can't see it in English, but in Greek, there are two kinds of "another." There is "allos," which is another of the same sort as the first kind and "heteros," which is another of something different. This is allos. Jesus is saying that the Father will send a Helper just like Jesus, the Spirit of truth. Who is truth? Jesus is truth. This is the Spirit of Jesus:

Romans 8:9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.

The New King James says "Helper," the NIV says "Counselor," and the King James says "Comforter." They are all correct. The Greek word is parakletos (par-ak'-lay-tos). It is "one who is summoned to one's side" or "called to one's aid." One who pleads another's case before a judge, an advocate.

The Holy Spirit is not for the world. He has been in the world, but now, for the first time, He will actually dwell inside believers. When Jesus was on earth, He could only be one place at a time, but through His Spirit, He can be in each believer:

Matthew 28:19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen.

What does that mean, exactly? Jesus tells us more:

John 14:19 Indwelling of the Father and the Son

"A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also. 20 At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. 21 He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him."

Each of these statements could be expanded on greatly. After Jesus' resurrection, only friendly eyes saw Him. He did not appear to the world in general. The "see" there is not just "look at," but to see intensely, to see with understanding. Do we see Jesus in that way? We don't see Him with our physical eyes, but we see Him when we trust and believe in Him. When you "see" Him that way, with the eyes of faith, you have a saving faith. Therefore, you can look forward to eternal life.

At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. You could study your whole life and not fully appreciate that. Simple little words that you probably learned to read when you were six - yet the concepts are so profound. I am in My Father. When do you truly know that? When you truly believe that Jesus is God. You in Me - that is salvation. When we are "in" Jesus, we have been saved, justified. It is the salvation of our souls - the movement from death to life. I in you - is sanctification. The spirit of Jesus within us, making us more like Him.

He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him. Why does Jesus keep bringing this up? He doesn't want followers in name only. He doesn't want Sunday Christians, who sit in church and give their offerings, sing their hymns, take communion - and then go and live like the rest of the world the rest of the time. How does Jesus manifest Himself to us? Through helping us understand His word. He will bring the word to life for you. If you can read the Bible and suddenly see that "this goes with that" - and "Hey, I think the tabernacle is a picture of Jesus," and on and on - He is manifesting Himself to you. He said the volume of the book was of Him. Do you see it? Do you see Jesus in the Old Testament? In the sacrifices, in the cities of refuge, in the kinsman redeemer? Then He is manifesting Himself to you.

This is the rest of the chapter, but any commentary will come when we take this up again:

John 14:22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, "Lord, how is it that You will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?"

23 Jesus answered and said to him, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. 24 He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father's who sent Me.

At first reading, it doesn't seem like Jesus is answering Judas' question. It seems as though He's off on a totally different tangent. However,

25 The Gift of His Peace

"These things I have spoken to you while being present with you. 26 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 things that I said to you. 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 heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 28 You have heard Me say to you, 'I am going away and coming back to you.' If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, 'I am going to the Father,' for My Father is greater than I.

29 "And now I have told you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe. 30 I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me. 31 But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do. Arise, let us go from here.

Next week will be our last study this year. Rather than get any further into the Upper Room Discourse, I'm going to go through something we did two years ago. I don't know about you, but I REALLY need a reminder of these things right now: 

Living by the Spirit



 The Berean Bible Study of the Gospel of John




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Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. - Acts 17:11

© 2012 This study was written by Jacqui Komschlies and last updated 2/1/2012. If you have questions, comments, corrections or concerns, please write me.

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