The Night Before
Updated: Apr 14
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world. John 16:33
I will be praising You for all eternity for sending Jesus to save me. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21).
This week in history are the final days leading up to the biggest turning point in the history of mankind, bringing about the best news the world will ever come to know. The gospel is the greatest news that could ever pass through someone's ears.
Jesus will die on a cross for all the sins of all the people who will ever come to believe in Him, in all of human history. And in three days, Jesus will rise again so that by God's grace whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life (John 3:16). On Thursday evening, Jesus anticipates the worst death that this world will ever know, mere hours away from Him. Among the terror and foreboding heaviness that weighs upon everyone that night, especially Jesus, the primary focus is not fear or death - but love.
Not only is Jesus anticipating the horror of what the Romans and Jews will do to Him physically, but more so what His Father will do to Him spiritually. God will lay on His perfect, blameless Son all the past, present, and future sins ever committed of every single person who would come to faith in Him. Jesus will be punished to the maximum; His precious blood covering every single sinful thought, word, action, and deed that would ever come into existence of those who would come to believe in Him. His Father will pour out and exhaust His holy wrath on Him, and the just requirement of God’s Law will finally be fulfilled, the propitiation and perfect sacrifice for our sins. And all of us who would ever come to believe in Jesus will be set free from the law of sin and death and be given life and peace in Christ. The only way we escape this world alive, is through Christ and through Christ alone. Jesus Christ is Lord to all and Savior to only those who choose to believe in Him.
• There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:1-2).
Jesus will have defeated death once and for all, and Satan will soon be crushed under His feet.
• When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit (John 19:30).
On the cross, God treats Jesus as if He committed all of our sins, though He committed none. And God treats us as if we did only the righteous deeds of the sinless Son of God. Believers are made perfect by grace through faith in Christ! Amen! We are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, according to Scripture alone, all for God’s glory alone. Praise our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!
The Most Powerful Love That Exists
Even with the most painful and agonizing event in all of history only hours away, Jesus’ focus is still not on Himself. His focus and attention is on His disciples, on others. The night before Jesus is crucified, He overflows with love for them. It's the type of love that is sacrificial, called Agape. Agape is an unconditional love, the highest form of love and charity, and the most powerful love that exists. It's the type of love God has for us and us for Him. Jesus displays His sacrificial love by comforting His disciples with hope and promises. He comforts them with the promise of divine love, the promise of heaven, the promise that He’s going to prepare a place for them in His Father’s House. Let these words from Jesus and Scriptures also be comforting to you, Christian :)
• In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also (John 14:1-3).
• Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him (John 14:21).
• As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love (John 15:9-10).
The Promise of the Holy Spirit
Jesus promises that He will supply everything His disciples ask through prayer in His name. He promises that they will never be alone. He gives them the promise of the Holy Spirit, who will be their helper, comforter, and guide in this life; empowering and teaching them all things, bearing witness of Jesus to the whole world. Let these promises speak right now to you too and comfort you, Christian.
• And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you (John 14:16-17).
• But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. (John 14:26).
The Promise of Peace
Jesus also promises that He will grant them peace; a peace the world does not know; a peace that comes only through the promise of the forgiveness of sins; a peace that only comes through the promise of eternal life by grace through faith; a peace that comes from being right with God. I hope you too feel the peace that surpasses all understanding, the peace that guards your heart and mind in Christ Jesus, the peace that comes only by being made right with God and being loved by God. Peace be with you, Christian.
• Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1).
• Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid (John 14:27).
• And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7).
The Promise of Bearing Fruit and Being Hated by the World
Jesus promises His disciples that they will bear much fruit as believers, and He also promises that as true believers, they will inevitably experience persecution, hatred from the world, and even death for His sake. Dear Christian, may you bear much fruit and so prove to be His disciple. And when you are persecuted for righteousness sake, I pray that you remain steadfast under trial, even counting it all joy. One of the biggest comforts and joys that come from persecution is the assurance of our salvation and that we are truly His. And may you rejoice and be glad when you are reviled, slandered, or persecuted for the sake of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the gospel, for the sake of boldly proclaiming the Truth, and for bearing the name of Christ. For great is your reward in heaven, Christian! The greater the persecution, the greater your eternal reward. Let that promise from God bring you comfort, strength, and endurance, Christian.
• By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples (John 15:8).
• I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing (John 15:5).
• If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.20 Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours (John 15:18-20).
• Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him (James 1:12).
The Promise of Overcoming Death
Jesus promises that they will have trouble in this life. But He also promises them that He will overcome the world and all its hostility and death. He comforts them and tells them not to be troubled or afraid. You mustn't either be troubled or afraid, for Jesus has overcome the world. He gives you eternal life, and you shall never perish. No one can snatch you out of His hand (John 10:28). The one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God is also the one who overcomes the world. So, do not be troubled or afraid of anything! When you have Jesus, you have absolutely nothing to fear. If God is for you, who could ever be against you? (Romans 8:31). It's the one who chooses not to believe in Jesus who has everything to fear.
• Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me (John 14:1).
• I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world (John 16:33).
• Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? (1 John 5:5)
The Promise of Joy
Jesus promises to give them a joy that no one will ever be able to take away. A joy the world knows nothing of. And may you find joy in the obedience to His Word. Just as Jesus showed that His obedience to His Father was the foundation of His joy, when you are obedient to His commandments, you will also experience the same joy, Christian. That's a joy the world knows nothing of, but you do.
Finally that evening, Jesus commands His disciples to love one another, as He has loved them - with Agape love, sacrificially. All these promises are given to comfort His disciples on the night before He is going to hang on a cross and experience the worst pain and death the world will ever know. Jesus commands us to love one another in His final and ultimate message to us before going to the cross. Jesus Christ is Love, and all glory belongs to Him forever and ever and ever! "The greatest joy in the world is to know Jesus Christ. The second greatest joy is to make Him known." - Steve Lawson
• These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full (John 15:11).
• So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you (John 16:22).
• This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you (John 15:12-14).
My Lord Jesus, eternity will not be long enough to give You the praise You deserve for giving me what I never deserved – the blessings of all blessings – eternal life in You, Jesus Christ my great God and Savior. Jesus, thank you for loving me with the most powerful love there is. There is nothing greater than to be loved by God. And that is the definition of peace.
The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you (Romans 16:20).
But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed. Isaiah 53:5
Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done. Luke 22:42
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. John 13:34-35
While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will not drink from this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” Matthew 26:26-29
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. John 3:16-17c