Grief To Joy

Hello everyone. We’re continuing our walk through the New Testament trying to understand the doctrine of the New Testament. Thanks to Kelp for his compliment and it is certainly agreed. The answer would be that when speaking of this, no exclusion of the glory of God was meant. Too often we view other people as ways to get what we need and for our own good. We do not often enough seek their good. Imagine how many marriages would be improved if this simple principle would be learned.

Our passage tonight is again in the gospel of John and the 16th chapter. We will be looking at verses 17-24:

17Some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,’ and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18They kept asking, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We don’t understand what he is saying.”19Jesus saw that they wanted to ask him about this, so he said to them, “Are you asking one another what I meant when I said, ‘In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me’? 20I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. 21A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world.22So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. 23In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 24Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

Yesterday we concluded asking about what Jesus meant by “In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me.”

If this passage of Scripture seems difficult to understand, let us take heart. The disciples steeped in the OT imagery who lived with Jesus had a hard time understanding him. We should take comfort in these words and if we find them too easy to understand, we are probably not looking at them enough.

Jesus knows that they want to ask this so he points to a time where they will mourn and the world will rejoice. We often think about the disciples mourning at the death of Christ, but we don’t think about the world rejoicing. The people were pleased. They thought justice had been served and that they had saved their country from the Roman Empire and the judgment of God.

Their mourning will turn to joy and they will no longer ask him anything. The joy will never go away. Why will they no longer ask him anything? They will not because they will understand who he is in relation to the Father. Of course, we can pray to the Son, but the traditional idea of prayer is to the Father, through the Son, by the Spirit.

What does this mean for us? It means we are to live a life of joy trusting in the Father that he will take care of us. Of course, it isn’t a blank check. We must trust him and be living our lives loyal to him and the more we do that, the more we truly will get what we ask for, for we will ask with right motives and ask for right things.

We shall continue this tomorrow.

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