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ADAMII - John: Chapter 14
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Study #14
Jesus' Final Briefing
Page 1 of 4
Little Children
Contextual Events

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A New Commandment
An Astonishing Promise
An Absolute Assurance

John Chapter 13:31-14:31


"LITTLE CHILDREN".  (The Disciples)


I Jn.2:1
I Jn.2:28
(Look for others.)
An intimate term used here only in John to refer to these eleven disciples whose hearts were cleansed and now innocent as a little child (as Nathanael's noted by Jesus before), in whom is no guile, or deceit, unlike that of the recently departed Judas. Jesus could not have called them such before, as He now does. Remember the requirements of entering the kingdom, "to become as little children"? Notice the order in distinction -- "Be converted, and become as little children," not become as little children and then be converted. Certainly one must become as humble as a child when coming to Jesus, but only His Word is capable of converting one into a "little child" and subsequent maturation as "little children."

Is it not through being born again that one becomes "a little child?" Here is His full definition, called such by our Lord in a fully matured adult: converted, and now after three years of association and discipling, becoming as "little children."

Study these qualities now becoming evident in His disciples who are becoming sanctified through His Word, as they relate to His stated requirement for entering the kingdom. Now compare them to the Fruit of the Spirit, the product of an abiding relationship that will be seen in the next study. Is it any wonder then why this is John's favorite phrase later in life, as seen in his latter writings and testified to by his associates -- the very one uttered by His Lord: "LITTLE CHILDREN."

Can we now not see in his heart an explanation of his familiar short sermon in his waning years, weak and unable to speak as before, now only in a soft whisper: "Little children, love one another."
Rather than piecemealing each as they are introduced from Chapter to Chapter, an individual unit of study of the twelve disciples is provided as an Appendix to this work for easy reference.

Jesus' long-awaited unavoidable confrontation with Judas, His traitor, has passed, and Judas is now departed (given over to Satan, no longer abiding) to his own hour of darkness. The tension and restraint in Christ at last relieved, He is free to turn to the remaining 11 who were cleansed of heart and loyal to Him without reservation, totally committed in body and soul to His cause. Josiah Royce, in a lecture at Harvard University, said this about a cause and loyalty: "If one could find such a cause, and hold it for his lifetime before his mind, clearly observing it, passionately loving it, and yet calmly understanding it, and steadily and practically serving it, he would have one plan of life...this plan would also be a plan of obedience, because it would mean living for the cause" (Royce, pp. 43-44).
Jesus has successfully (save one) fended the attacks (unknown to the disciples) of Satan to preserve these loved little ones. Satan has snared who he could and gone with him to do his evil deed, no longer present in the midst of these remaining (abiding) ones. ( 13:2,27,30)



Now, He can be more intimate with them. "NOW" clearly shows this is a historic turning point in the life and work of Christ. They have been sifted, gathering to Himself those who are pure, and now will reveal to these only, the most intimate details of His future plans. It is safe; for the moment Satan is no longer among them. He must brief them quickly in this top secret moment, for Satan will return soon for Him, and this time He will allow him to take Him for His purpose to be fulfilled and His Plan succeed. Like inferior generals who fight new wars with old tactics, Satan is predictable, but Jesus (the Omniscient One), the Creator and Commander of All that is, is far superior to any adversary, going on from victory to victory. His ways are mysterious, even to Satan. Jesus is his nemesis, and soon to be his Conqueror! The outcome of this engagement does not hang in the balance; it is decided! Satan is defeated! Though he roars for now, it is brief; for soon he will be sentenced to silence forever! ( Heb.2:14, I Pe.5:8, Rev.20:10)

3:14; 7:33
8:21; 12:32
Jesus' words sends shock waves into their hearts. It is a scene much like that when one answers the dreaded knock at their door in the night, hearing that unbearable announcement of the loss of a dearest loved one. Their hearts will not accept what their minds are hearing. They are stunned to silence! They hear His words, but because they are unprepared for this moment (failing themselves to have understood His earlier teachings on being "LIFTED UP" and "GOING AWAY"), their souls sink within them as their stomachs rise into their throats. In a moment, they come crashing from their hopeful heights of ruling with Him to the shocking reality that leaves them reeling: He is soon to depart them, and they cannot come! Peter, like the awakened one at the night door, denies this reality and speaks for them all from their determined desire, much like Thomas at an earlier time.
(Ch.14 & following)
Jesus will lovingly lead them to accept the reality of His Truth and obedience to His Plan. He must correct their misconceived commitment (death with Him now), to channel their courage to life after Him, in absence of Him, to receive His Comforter that they may do the greater works than His, ordained by the Father. They too must be obedient to the Father's Will, rather than their own ideas and desires. ( 14:12, 14:15,23-24, 13:37)
Ch.14 is a continuation of Jesus' dialogue in Ch.13, without a break in the scene. They will leave the upperroom in 14:31, enroute to Gethsemane. The time is around 9 p.m., Thursday evening, the 15th of Nisan (the day having already begun at 6 p.m.).
John gives us the treasure, most likely, of the greatest words of comfort and encouragement from our Lord the other gospel writers do not. In these, we see Jesus' loving concern and compassion for His disciples all the way to the end. He knows what He now must needs do, yet His Heart is upon His chosen little ones and their soon to be scattered lives. They must not despair; His words are intended to keep hope alive and abiding belief in Him, when they will fail to understand the impending events of His Passion. He simply says: Trust me, for I have never let you down. And so he gives them a New Commandment, an Astonishing Promise, and an Absolute Assurance.

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