The life, testimony, ministry, and teachings of one Jesus from Nazareth
As we close out our time in John 15 and move on to chapter sixteen, Jesus gives us the perfect segue as He continues to impart life-giving teaching to His disciples. He gives us the reason why He’s investing so much time and energy into the teachings and doctrines of the Upper Room Discourse. So take a look at this verse:
“I have said all these things to you to keep you from falling away.”
I find this verse very riveting considering what has gone before. Jesus has taught the disciples so much about serving others, loving as He loves, the coming of the Holy Spirit, abiding in the Vine, persecution, and much, much more. However, before moving on to the next phase of teaching, Jesus stops and tells them that all these things—everything within John 13-15—were shared to keep them from falling away. This is a powerful purpose! The world is constantly seeking to pull us away from the One who gives life and hope, and one look at current statistics, shows them succeeding for the most part with this generation. But Jesus knew this, which is why He gave us three power-packed chapters worth of teaching that were imparted for the sole purpose of keeping us from falling away. The lessons and applications laid out in John 13-15 were not given to make us feel good, show us how to become good people, or guilt us for our imperfection, but rather to give us something to grasp onto like a life vest so that we will stand firm on the promises of God and not fall away during the storms and buffets of life. The world will push and pull, trying to break us loose from our biblical mooring and the Anchor of our soul. The only way we’ll be able to stand fast is by taking to heart and applying the things Jesus taught. Eight out of every ten youths raised in Christian families walk away from the faith of their parents by the time they reach college. Don’t become one of the statistics!
So here’s this week’s question…have YOU made the truths and lessons you’ve learned from this study your lifeline? Will you hold on to them no matter what the world brings your way?
No matter what happens in our lives—whether we get the grades we want, go to our dream college, get the perfect job, marry the person we want, have the number of kids we dream of, live a successful life, retire with all the perks, etc.—the only thing that matters into eternity is whether we stayed true to the One who gave His life for us. This is the reason why. Why Jesus invested over 2,200 words teaching us what we need to know. Why we study our Bibles. And why we seek to memorize portions of God’s Word. Remaining faithful to our high calling in Christ must be the reason and motivation behind each and every thing we do. Because at the end of the day, it’s the only thing God cares about. So remember this when the cares and concerns of the world bear down upon you and consume your thoughts and attentions, and know that only those who remain faithful to the end will hear the heart pleasing words of the Master:
“Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.”
This is true success, true accomplishment, and true fulfillment of all Jesus sought to accomplish through His teachings. May this be said of you and I!