For the next three weeks we will be using the Gospel of John to focus on the Holy Spirit. The Gospel of John is unique because it has several miracles and events recorded in it that are not included in Matthew, Mark or Luke. John uses the words “love, light, life, word, world, witness, testify, and believe” many more times than any other New Testament writer and often repeats these words in order to emphasize the point he is making. John stated his purpose in writing his gospel as being:
Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. John 20:30-31 NIV
The section we are focusing on is found in chapters 13 and 14 of John. They are within a larger section that is called the “Upper Room Discourse” that includes chapters 13-17 of John. This conversation Jesus had with his disciples during the last supper they shared together is only found in John.
“My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come. A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Simon Peter asked him, “Lord, where are you going?”
Jesus replied, “Where I am going, you cannot follow now, but you will follow later.”
Peter asked, “Lord, why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.”
Then Jesus answered, “Will you really lay down your life for me? I tell you the truth, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times!
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me.” John 13:33-14:1 NIV
Jesus was still with the disciples, but soon wouldn’t be. He was teaching them about how He wants them to treat each other when he is no longer there, but Peter focused on the wrong thing – that Jesus was leaving. Then Jesus told Peter he will deny him very soon. There is quite a contrast between the Peter shown in the Gospels and the Peter we see in Acts 2:14-41 and in the rest of the New Testament. The difference is the empowering of the Holy Spirit. In John 13 Peter did not have the power of the Holy Spirit in his life yet. Jesus did tell him and the others how the Holy Spirit would change things for them.
Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. John 14:10-14 NIV
This is really quite amazing! Jesus told his disciples they will do even greater things than He has done! That is only possible through the power of the Holy Spirit. Jesus also told them to trust in God, to not be troubled. This is something we all need to remember each and every day. Since we have the power of the Holy Spirit, if we believe in Jesus as our Savior, then we should not let our hearts be troubled, but instead trust in God and in the power of the Holy Spirit to be at work in our lives. Read Psalm 56. Listen to why the Psalmist says we should trust in God. Ask the Holy Spirit to speak to your troubled heart and to enable you to trust in God today.