The coronavirus pandemic has brought many unsettling changes to our nation and the world. This has caused many to fall into panic, despair, fear, worry, stress and depression. They are unable to find any peace. But there are many places in the Bible where it can be found. One of those places is John 14-16. Here Jesus speaks to His apostles to prepare them for His death and departure from this world and to give them peace. We too may find peace in these words of Jesus.
He began by saying, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me” (John 14:1). Jesus knows our hearts. He calls us to believe. It is in trusting Him that we find peace. Without a living, obedient faith there is no peace.
He continued, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” John 14:27). Though Jesus was physically leaving the apostles and now is gone into heaven, He has not left them without peace. In fact, He promises to give them peace, but it is not the peace the world gives. This is an important distinction. When we seek the peace that the world gives, we always end up empty-handed. It isn’t real and it doesn’t last. The world may satisfy our fleshly desires for a while and provide at least some physical protection from what attacks us, but it can never protect our hearts nor save our souls from the sin, destruction and death all around us. Only Jesus can give us this true and everlasting peace.
Listen to Him again, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world" (John 16:33). Jesus had told His apostles that He would send them a helper, the Holy Spirit. He had promised to provide all they would need while He was away and that He would return for them to give them a place in His Father’s house. These words of Jesus make it possible for us to have peace in Jesus.
Peace is found in Jesus, that is in fellowship and in union with Jesus now and forever. He overcame the world. He lived a sinless life. He offered Himself as a sacrifice for our sins. He was raised from the tomb to live forever. He has ascended to God’s right hand. He is both Lord and Christ. In Him we have forgiveness and the hope of eternal life. He is in control of all things and is able to deliver us from every enemy, even death. We should not be surprised that there is much trouble in this evil world, but we can find comfort and courage for our hearts because there is victory in Jesus!
Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
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