God’s Renewing Word of Love
John 16:16-24: The disciples are unable to comprehend what Jesus tells them about his impending suffering and death. Jesus tells them that they will be sad for a while, but that their sadness will turn into gladness.
Sadness and Gladness
16“In a little while you will not see me any more, and then a little while later you will see me.”
17Some of his disciples asked among themselves, “What does this mean? He tells us that in a little while we will not see him, and then a little while later we will see him; and he also says, ‘It is because I am going to the Father.’ 18What does this ‘a little while’ mean? We don’t know what he is talking about!”
19Jesus knew that they wanted to question him, so he said to them, “I said, ‘In a little while you will not see me, and then a little while later you will see me.’ Is this what you are asking about among yourselves? 20I am telling you the truth: you will cry and weep, but the world will be glad; you will be sad, but your sadness will turn into gladness. 21When a woman is about to give birth, she is sad because her hour of suffering has come; but when the baby is born, she forgets her suffering, because she is happy that a baby has been born into the world. 22That is how it is with you: now you are sad, but I will see you again, and your hearts will be filled with gladness, the kind of gladness that no one can take away from you.
23“When that day comes, you will not ask me for anything. I am telling you the truth: the Father will give you whatever you ask of him in my name. 24Until now you have not asked for anything in my name; ask and you will receive, so that your happiness may be complete.
Today’s Key Verse: John 16:22b
[Jesus said to his disciples:] “Now you are sad, but I will see you again, and your hearts will be filled with gladness, the kind of gladness that no one can take away from you.”
According to verses 17 and 18, what questions were on the minds of the disciples? Jesus uses the image of childbirth to explain the temporary sadness the disciples will experience which will then be followed by gladness “that no one can take away” (verses 21, 22). What does Jesus say to reassure the disciples?
Dear Jesus, you suffered and died for my sake, but God raised you to life and you defeated sin and death so that all who believe in you would have eternal life. You have turned sadness into joy—a joy that no one can take away. To you be praise and glory forever and ever! Amen.
John 16:25-33: Jesus speaks of his victory over the world.