John 16:27-33 New King James Version (NKJV)
27 for the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me, and have believed that I came forth from God.
28 I came forth from the Father and have come into the world. Again, I leave the world and go to the Father.”
29 His disciples said to Him, “See, now You are speaking plainly, and using no figure of speech!
30 Now we are sure that You know all things, and have no need that anyone should question You. By this we believe that You came forth from God.”
31 Jesus answered them, “Do you now believe?
32 Indeed the hour is coming, yes, has now come, that you will be scattered, each to his own, and will leave Me alone. And yet I am not alone, because the Father is with Me.
33 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.”
We are living in troubled times. Many feel it.
--Some are going through trials, uncertainties, stress and sorrows; and, at times, wonder if God cares.
--Yes, He cares. He knows how we may triumph in Him!
--God would share with us, and give us the victory.
Let's not forget there have always been some trouble.
--Believers need to defeat trouble before it defeats us.
--All through the Bible, people have faced hard times.
--Even Jesus, God Himself, had His share, and more.
--He was tested - "tempted of the devil" - for 40 days.
--He triumphed over Satan, the worst enemy of us all.
--To remind us that trials come not to impair us, but to improve us, so that we draw closer to Christ.
Hear the word of the Lord, "the Father Himself loves you, because you have loved Me .. believed that I came forth from God" (v 27).
--The disciples affirmed, "we are sure that You know all things .. by this we believe ..." (v 30).
--Jesus ends the chapter, ".. in Me you have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world" (v 33).
--He said we "will have trouble," and we will, friend.
--But promised, "Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." What most encouraging words for our world.
--Jesus did, by His defeating death and the devil, by His death for us on the cross, and His resurrection!
Of these verses, Philip Melancthon wrote Martin Luther, "Such as this is worthy to be carried from Rome to Jerusalem on one's knees!" Or a neighbor, in need.
--Remember that no jewel escapes the polishing wheel!
May I share five Bible verses that can win in trouble.
I. "MAN .. IS OF FEW DAYS AND FULL OF TROUBLE."
--Its in Job 14:1. Trials are common as old cars.
--Maybe not like Job's. Nor like Jesus and His cross.
--But some we just can't escape; pray, try, as we may.
--Age, illness, storms, finances, family, temptation.
--"Everyone shall bear his own burden" (Gal. 6:5).
"Bear" is the same word used for a child in a womb, as only that mother can bear it - no one else.
--Some we must bear by ourself, alone.
--For instance, sickness and suffering we bear our own.
---May suffer. with another; but cannot take their own.
--The same is true of death - each must die his own..
Sometimes we dearly wish we could suffer for our child or spouse or loved one or friend. Or die for them.
--But we each must walk the path of pain, "through the valley of the shadow of death," for ourselves.
But we can in love share, by our care and prayer.
--A call. A card. A letter, like I've received, help.
--And all of us can pray "one for another" Jesus said.
--My friend, all this, is precious to defeat trouble!
II. "GOD IS .. A VERY PRESENT HELP IN TROUBLE."
--Mark it in Psalm 46:1. The Lord's help is the best.
--Thank God for others who care. None are 24/7 as He.
--For the Lord God is "a very present help ..."
--We can call on all the help of heaven to assist us!
--Because of the sacrifice of Christ we can seek aid.
--Because of the prayers of Jesus, we have His love.
--By our closeness to Him, we have confidence in God.
--To pray, "Lord, with Your help, I bear my cross."'
Don't forget what Jesus promised His own, "I will never leave you, nor forsake" (Hebrews 13:5). Seek Him.
--In my own life, or with one in need, when all seemed dark and disappointing - trials and turmoils - I come to the Lord, "to be still and wait upon the Lord."
--In quiet, in trust, confession and communion, I soon feel His presence. A calm peace; as my fog passes. Trust and obey - there's no better way, my friend.
--In Philadelphia and Mt. Clemens, MI, we used to go to the prisons, many Sunday afternoons, for services.
--A prisoner needs one's soul fed. Spirits cheered.
--One was sewing a patch on a prison garb.
--To make conversation, was asked, "Are you sewing?"
--He replied, "Yes, for I'm also reaping what I sowed, by being in here. But I'm finding the Lord! Finding God's purpose in my life, for I'm getting out soon."
--In a prison, God was "a very present help."
That man was defeating his troubles. Was soon freed.
--In Jesus Christ, "free indeed to live for the Lord!
--Many today, outside prison walls, need to be set free by a faith firmly fixed in the finished work of Jesus.
--To really get to know this One, True and Living God.
--To live, not for self, but for the Lord, each day!.
What else will help us defeat our troubles?
III. "THEY CRIED (PRAYED) TO THE LORD IN .. TROUBLE."
--We read this in Psalm 107, verses 6,13, 19, 28.
--A professor in seminary used to say before his class, "Let us pray. We can do nothing better than pray and after we pray, we can do everything better."
Yet, some people seldom pray - until in trouble.
--Of course, anyone, at any time, for anything, can go to the Lord in prayer, and He will hear.
--But it is so much better to begin each day in prayer as well as little intercessions during the day.
--End it drawing the curtain on our knees with God.
The Old and New Testaments are full of God's answers.
--The preservation of the Jewish race against so heavy opposition - even over six million exterminated during a wicked time - and enemies vowing to destroy Israel and the U.S. now - is a witness to prayer.
--Every believer could testify to power in prayer.
--It is "no secret what God can do" for you.
Don't go around complaining of trouble and criticizing.
--Use that energy, with faith, in prayer to the Lord.
--Show the world, not what trouble does, but God can do.
--Put it all in the Lord's hands .. by folding ours in talking often to the Lord - in and out of trouble.
--Read the Psalms. See how often David cries to God, "Give us help from trouble" (Psalm 108:12).
--May I suggest that more of us give it a try.
Then, let's try to walk before the Lord worthy of His help and blessing - to give power to our prayers.
IV. JESUS SAID, t1LET NOT YOUR HEART BE TROUBLED."
--Mark this in John 14:1. How do we do this?
--The rest of the verse, "believe in God. .also in Me."
--Even in trouble, "Let not your heart be troubled."
--In a ship, on Galilee, in a storm, Jesus slept.
--"Don't You care we perish?" they woke, asked, Him.
--He spoke, "Peace, be still." Winds calmly ceased.
--Let Him do that, for us! Call unto Him.
Circumstances we can't control. We can our attitude.
--Think of the cross, all Jesus faced. Forgave them.
--Loved them. Prayed for them. Even died for them.
--His right attitude brought forth His resurrection.
A Christian couple lived above a noisy, worldly family.
--It was like a lily amid the muck and mire.
--How to live in peace, like that? Living for Jesus!
--Offered loving, lifting words. Deeds of caring.
--If God lives in you, live above your troubles!
Remember the fable of the frog in the churn? Kids do.
--When a batch of cream covered him up in trouble, he wondered why? Will I survive, alive? He did!
--He didn't give up! Started' jumping up. Kept at it.
--Folks looked in - frog was on top .. of the butter!
--The frog defeated trouble! He triumphed over it!
--My dear friend, with the Lord's help, you can too!
V. JESUS SAID, "IN ME, PEACE: IN THE WORLD, TROUBLE."
--In John 16:33 again. Look, we decide which it is.
--We can have either. The difference is in Jesus!
Real peace is not in pills, or a bottle, but in Him.
--Trying to drown difficulties with drink is futile.
--It only makes things worse; and worse, for all.
--God "will keep you in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on God" (Isaiah 26:3). Keep close to Christ.
It takes a "born again" trust in Jesus, to save us.
--With daily Word and prayer, to triumph in trouble.
--So count your blessings. And win over sin.
--Give your heart - and troubles - to the Lord.
--There's no better way to defeat life's difficulty.
--Go God's way, to triumph over what life may give us.
"Fight the good fight of faith," on the winning team.
--One always wins, when we let the Lord lead.
--Follow Him, all the way.
Wilbert D. Gough, ThD., DD. 463