15.01.06 Jn. 16:25-33
EXPLANATIONS WILL BRING UNDERSTANDING
25 “I have spoken these things to you in figures of speech. A time is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures, but I will tell you plainly about the Father. 26 In that day you will ask in My name. I am not telling you that I will make requests to the Father on your behalf. 27 For the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I am leaving the world and going to the Father.”
29 “Ah!” His disciples said. “Now You’re speaking plainly and not using any figurative language. 30 Now we know that You know everything and don’t need anyone to question You. By this we believe that You came from God.”
31 Jesus responded to them, “Do you now believe? 32 Look: An hour is coming, and has come, when each of you will be scattered to his own home, and you will leave Me alone. Yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me. 33 I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”
Jesus told them that in the near future they would understand His words. But first they would suffer, and then have victory because He has “conquered” the world. Coupled with this information, He told them they would have free access to the heavenly Father. Therefore, when they prayed, they could pray directly to the Father for their needs and petitions.
“You will have suffering … I have conquered the world.” In this passage is the same Greek term thlipsis that is often translated as either suffering or troubles, although great anguish or a great tribulation is clearly the preferred description. Jesus did not speak about the sufferings and troubles of life that come with revolts and social upheaval that would occasionally break out. He was speaking of the intense pressure concerning life and death situations. In that context He said that He conquered the world, a word that comes from the Greek term nenikeka, rooted in nike that means victory.
After the tribulation experience of the crucifixion; the huge loss, and sense of lostness and loneliness of Jesus dying, then the incredible resurrection, John later wrote to the early believers and said,
You have conquered them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
1 John 4:4
John went on to say that those who overcome the persecutions, temptations, and challenges of this life, to them Jesus will give the right to enjoy the food from the tree of life that is in the paradise of God (Rev. 2:7). Little wonder then, that the Apostle Paul said that believers are more than conquerors (Rom. 8:37).
Throughout history, many Christians have suffered for their convictions. While “the cup” that Jesus took cannot be compared to the worst of suffering by His saints, many have considered it an honor to die for their Savior. Church tradition says that Peter believed this and, when he was crucified, he asked that it be upside down because he was not worthy of an ordinary crucifixion. Today, the connection between the sacrament of Communion and sharing in Christ’s suffering is clear to those living under Islamic and Communistic rule. As they gather to share in the Holy Rite, they also participate in His sufferings at the hands of their oppressors. In doing so, they witness for Jesus and invite their persecutors to remember the death of Jesus and accept the gift of eternal life that He offers. Finally, in the passage, Jesus identified Himself as the One who brings peace and the One by whom His believers have already secured ultimate future victory.
. Lang, Know the Words of Jesus. 36.
. Nettleton, “The Cup of Suffering in Nigeria.” 3-4. For more information on todays persecuted church see, The Voice of the Martyrs, a ministry that aides the persecuted church through practical and spiritual assistance while leading Christians in the free world into fellowship with them.
. See “Jesus, the Fulfiller of Selected Names of God” in Appendix 32 for additional attributes.