How do we know that everything will be alright in the end? In many ways, that’s the very question that was haunting the minds of Jesus’ disciples. Jesus had told them to prepare for battle, that the persecution that was coming for him would come for them also. They no doubt felt like underdogs.
Have you ever felt like an underdog? Maybe you are facing seemingly insurmountable obstacles, harsh realities, painful setbacks, and crushing sadness. You’re asking Jesus: “How do I know that it will all be right in the end?” Jesus addresses that honest, deep, and heartfelt question in our passage from John 16:16-33.
Because Jesus overcomes, we too will overcome.
Jesus is the overcomer in three spheres:
- Redemptive History: Jesus overcomes sorrow with joy. This is true for Jesus, this is true for the disciples, and it is also true for us. Because redemption is not just something God did one time for Jesus; redemption is the story of history. Our God is a redeeming God. He takes what is broken and makes it whole, what is marred and makes it beautiful, what is sorrowful and turns it to joy. Jesus is in the business of overcoming sorry with joy.
- Divine Reconciliation: Jesus overcomes estrangement with reunion. We were made for relationship with God. But our sin separates us from God and we experience estrangement. But God, in His great love for us, sent His Son to do whatever it took to bring us home. On the cross Jesus died in our place and for our sake, bearing all our sin and shame, covering us with his perfect life, so that we might be reconciled to God. Reunited with him. Jesus overcomes our sin, shame, and separation. He becomes our Substitute and Savior so that we might become children of God. We can then cry out “Abba Father.” Jesus is in the business of overcoming estrangement with reunion.
- Personal Transformation: What on earth do you do with your own undeniable failure? How will you ever find peace? Jesus overcomes faithlessness with faithfulness. The disciples who fled from Jesus due to their fear, weakness, and faithlessness experienced personal transformation through Jesus. The faithless became faithful because of the faithfulness of Jesus, who did not abandon those who abandoned Him, who did not fail those who failed Him, but who overcame evil with good. We too can overcome fear, weakness, and faithlessness because Jesus overcame those things.
Takeaway: whatever we face, since Jesus is with us, will be all right in the end.
- Jesus is working redemption in all history.
- Jesus has reconciled us to the Father.
- Jesus is transforming us by his faithfulness.