Jesus' words were somewhat confusing. A little while, and ye shall not see me. It was not always easy for the disciples to understand what Jesus was really telling them.
16. A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me, because I go to the Father.
17. Then said some of his disciples among themselves, What is this that he saith unto us, A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me: and, Because I go to the Father?
18. They said therefore, What is this that he saith, A little while? we cannot tell what he saith.
19. Now Jesus knew that they were desirous to ask him, and said unto them, Do ye enquire among yourselves of that I said, A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me?
20. Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.
21. A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world.
22. And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.
(John 16:16-22, King James Version)
It was not always easy for the disciples to understand what Jesus was really telling them. Such was the case in our Bible passage from John 16, shown above.
This reminds me of times when my children were young. We would have barely left home to go see relatives about 6 hours away, when someone would ask, "How long until we are there." This would continue about every 5 minutes or so, until I learned to answer, "We'll be there shortly."
I will have to admit that Jesus' words were somewhat confusing. Where was Jesus going, and when would He be back?
Jesus, reading the thoughts of the disciples, explained His meaning. Soon the world will have great joy, but you will be very sorrowful. But, understand that I will see you again in shortly, and then you will have great joy.
What love Jesus had for his disciples! He tried every way He could to prepare them for future events so that they would not be filled with worry and apprehension. Did you know that Jesus does the same thing today? We have many Bible passages that tell of times to come, and the Holy Spirit asserts in our hearts that we are in the last days.
Why did God go to such lengths to tell us of the things to come? I think there are two things we should consider.
First, God warned us of things to come so that we would not worry or be filled with fear at the present world situation. We know that nothing is out of the control of God, but everything is going just as He planned.
Second, God desires us to be faithful in spreading His love to those around us who have no such comfort. We, as Christians, need to understand that our top priority at this time is to be a light to the world of darkness all around.
Shortly the end of time will come. Let us therefore let our lights so shine that people would see Jesus!
Next: Ask and Receive - John 16:23-24
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