DAILY BIBLE READING:

2 Samuel 12:1-31 
John 16:1-33 
Psalm 119:65-80 
Proverbs 16:4-5

BIBLE VERSE(S) FOR TODAY:

John 16:33 (CSB) “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”

REFLECTIONS ON TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):

No one would deny that life is tough. It certainly has its tough moments. But, for some people, those times last much longer than moments.

Jesus speaks into our difficult times when He says, “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace.”

He is saying that all of His talk about the cross, dying, going away, sending an Advocate (the Holy Spirit), and so much more is necessary for His followers to experience peace in their hearts.

The Lord wants us to have peace. In fact, it’s one of the tell-tell signs that we are filled with the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22-23). 

What does this peace look like? It’s the ability to have calm reign within our hearts even as the storms around us are raging. Maybe the doctor has given a bad prognosis. Maybe an unjust boss has fired you. Maybe the car has broken down and there’s no money to get it fixed. Jesus is saying that it’s possible for the storms of life to rage and yet have a settled peace within our hearts.

How does this happen? Is it just wishful thinking or is this peace based upon something substantive?

Notice again what Jesus said: 

John 16:33 (CSB) “I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.”

Jesus acknowledges that we will have trouble in this world. He’s not spouting off positivity talk. He’s saying that life will get hard sometimes.

BUT, we are called to be courageous. We are called to stand tall. We are called to be unafraid and experience the peace within our hearts that everything is going to be OK. 

Why? What is this based upon?

Jesus answered this question when He said: “I have conquered the world.” 

Simply put, the world system with all of its sin and consequences that make life so difficult is a defeated foe. Jesus, by His righteous life, sacrificial death, and victorious resurrection has defeated sin, self-rule, and Satan. The trinity of evil has been defeated.

So, when life gets tough, we are to remind ourselves that its simply because we live in a sin-sick, broken world. Bad things happen because Adam sinned. He essentially put water in the motor and the engine isn’t running as God originally intended. Bad things happen.

But, the Holy Spirit has been given to us to help us through this broken world. He has been given to empower us to live victoriously even as we walk through trials. And one day, we will close our eyes in death and be ushered into the presence of our Lord to enjoy forever. Sin and its consequences, which presently create such difficulty for us, will never again be our experience. So, even if we are overwhelmed with trials, we should look ahead with excited anticipation of one day being with our Lord.

Is life tough? You betcha. But, we can take heart and live victoriously because our Lord has overcome it. And because He has, so will we.