Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Part IV: Presentation Of The Messenger Of Salvation
D. Christ's Credentials Revealed In His Preparations For The Cross
3. Christ's Credibility Seen In Encouraging His Disciples In VIEW Of His Coming Cross
f. Christ's Equipping His Disciples To Handle Persecution In VIEW Of His Cross
(John 15:18-16:15)
  1. Introduction
    1. In presenting Himself to the disciples as the Messiah, Jesus needed to reveal His awareness that He would die. They had grown up thinking Messiah would defeat His enemies and soon set up His earthly Kingdom!
    2. In revealing this credibility, Jesus not only predicted His rejection and death, but informed His disciples that they also would be persecuted because they, like He, would be rejected by a godless world. Just how Jesus revealed that information, and how His disciples were to handle such difficulty triumphantly reveals both Christ's credibility and the believer's victory in persecution as follows:
  2. Christ's Equipping His Disciples To Handle Persecution In VIEW Of His Cross, Jn. 15:18-16:15.
    1. Jesus revealed He knew He was about to be afflicted, for there is an enmity of the world against not only Himself, but even against His followers who stand for God's righteousness with Him, John 15:18-27:
      1. Christ revealed that when the disciples saw they were hated by the world, they should not be surprised, but realize that the world similarly hated the righteous Jesus before it hated Christ's followers, Jn. 15:18.
      2. The reason for this enmity rests in the nature of the gulf between a sinful world and God, 15:19-27:
        1. Jesus had chosen His disciples away from the world's fraternity, so the world hated them, Jn. 15:19.
        2. This hatred is a duplication of the hatred the world had for Jesus, John 15:20.
        3. The reason for this hatred of both Christ and His followers is thus based upon the fact that Christ, with His followers tend to reveal the world's sin to its uncomfortable exposure, John 15:21-22.
        4. Thus, when one hates Jesus or His followers for this, they reveal a hatred of the Father, Jn. 15:23-25.
        5. When the Holy Spirit would come and indwell the believer, He would testify to the truth about Christ to the world's exposure of sin, making the believer expose sin in the world as well, 15:26-27.
    2. Thus, Jesus claimed He revealed this uncomfortable fact of the world's enmity against the Father, Himself and His followers so that the disciples would not be offended in Him when they were later persecuted for righteousness' sake, or when He was crucified contrary to popular Hebrew Messianic hopes, John 16:1-4a.
    3. He also revealed why He had not told them about this hard fact at the start of His ministry: He was with them then, and could encourage them. However, His soon departure mandated His revealing this difficult fact so that the disciples would not be di sillusioned at the suffering that would face Him and them, 16:4b.
    4. Nevertheless, Jesus revealed that His going to the Cross and departing to be with the Father would equip His disciples to minister in Christ's stead by the Holy Spirit's power to face unjust persecution effectively:
      1. <:#259,10800>Jesus acknowledged that news of His departure from the disciples sorrowed them, John 16:5-6.
      2. <:#518,10800>However, His departure by way of the cross was necessary for the advantage of the disciples, for only then could the Holy Spirit indwell them permanently to equip them to face persecution well, 16:7-15:
        1. <:#259,10800>It was necessary for Jesus to depart through the Cross to be able to send the Holy Spirit, 16:7.
        2. It was to their advantage for the Spirit to come, for then He would reprove the world of sin, righteousness and judgment throught he disciples' ministries, John 16:8-11.
        3. He would also tell the disciples many things Jesus had not yet taught, including future events, all to the glory of Jesus and the edification of the disciples under persecution for Christ, Jn. 16:12-15. The ultimate fulfillment of this prediction is the Revelation to John on Patmos, cf. Rev. 1:1, 9-20, for there Jesus revealed the edifying details of assigned suffering in our unique stage of time, Rev. 2-3!
Lesson: (1) To His credibility as Messiah, Jesus revealed the cross was in the PLAN of God -- not an accident, and that by predicting His suffering. (2) He also prepared His disciples to handle LIKE persecution by stating it came for RIGHTEOUS sta nds, easing them from false guilt for its arrival, and telling them of the Spirit's coming to ENABLE them to WITNESS as well as STRENGTHEN them to HANDLE persecution by way of edifying insight into their future sufferings, cf. Rev. 2-3's predictions!