Christ’s Ultimate Upper 3/7/99

John 14:1-7
Page 1578 Come Alive Bible

Jesus Christ gathered for the last time with His disciples. He was about to finish His earth-walk and return triumphant to the Father. This meant the disciples’ world was about to unsuspectingly go into eclipse at mid-day. Their world is about to fall apart. Their hearts were a medley of emotions. They had feelings like us. They were sad because of the gloomy prospect of Christ going away; ashamed because of their demonstrated selfishness; perplexed because one of them was predicted to betray Christ.

In Chapters 14 through 17 of John we are allowed to look into the very soul of Christ.

He spoke, “Let not your heart be troubled…” (Vs. 1). This statement has become the pillow on which many broken hearts have found comfort. The expression meant “Stop letting your hearts be troubled!” Literally, “Let not your hearts any longer be troubled…” How?

Christ compounded an antidote for their trouble; believe in the Father and Me.

Both words “believe” in the Greek text are the same, PISTEUET. They can either be a statement of fact or a command. The first is a statement of fact, the latter a command. No matter what was to happen in the next three days, they were to believe in Him.

Christ has always honestly told His followers of both the GLORY and the PAIN involved in following Him. Every believer should realize you should not expect to eat the honey, unless you are willing to take the stings. Anticipating the honey of earthly victory, they are about to receive temporal stings.

Jesus Christ’s time of sharing in the Upper Room had repetitiously been interrupted by Peter. He, at first, refused to let his feet be washed and then asked to be completely bathed. He had inquired as to who would betray Christ. His pendulum personality had swung so often he had virtually worn out his mood-ring. Then (13:36) he asked, “Lord, where are you going?” In answering Peter’s question, Christ reveals that:


A. He Is Reliable. Trust in God the Father gives confidence in Christ, God the Son. Jesus asked, “Will you also go away?” The disciples responded, “Lord, where else is there to go?” Christ’s statement is actually a double plural imperative: “Have faith in God, and in me have faith.” Prophecy reveals Him to be reliable. The chances of an Old Testament prophet writing eight prophecies and having them come true in one person is one to the seventeenth power; that is, 1000 quadrillion. That many silver dollars spread over the face of the land mass of Texas would cover it two feet deep. If one dollar in that mass were marked and a person blind-folded and asked to pick out that one, he would have a better chance than for eight prophecies to be fulfilled in one life. There are 332 prophecies related to Christ that have been fulfilled. That is a mathematical impossibility.

Faith is merely confidence in God’s character. The origin of trouble in every life is failure to have faith in God. Adam and Eve are Exhibit A.

Without faith life is like the disciples’ night on the Sea of Galilee; night-bound and storm-tossed.

There is an oft-seen poster which reads: “All that I have seen of my Creator teaches me to trust Him for all I have not seen.” This indicates that faith is submission of your reason to all He has revealed. Faith does not ignore facts; it introduces facts, the facts of revelation.

Faith is a daily practice in every life. For example, you go to a doctor you do not know, whose degree you cannot verify. He gives you a prescription you can’t read. You take it to a pharmacist you have never seen. He gives you a chemical compound you do not understand. You then take the medicine according to instructions. That’s faith.

The object of faith is more important than the amount of faith. You might have great faith that a well-known general of the army who is a friend of yours can fly you across the Pacific even though he has never flown a plane. You would likely end up drowned in spite of your faith. The problem would be the object of your faith is unreliable in this given area. By contrast you may have little or no faith in an unknown 2l year old with 5,000 hours flying time. Yet, he would be able to get the job done because he is a reliable object of faith.

You have faith. How reliable is the object of your faith?

Is there an area of your life in which Christ is not trusted with complete control? Is He dormant in your life while wanting to be dominant? Do you want Him to be only your Savior Lord while He wants to be your Sovereign Lord; the one in absolute control?

B. He is Responsible. “I go (before) you to prepare a place for you…” PRODOMOS, meaning forerunner, is the word used to describe Him going before us. This is comparable to a pilot ship that goes before to guide another vessel to a safe harbor. Jesus is our PRODROMOS (Heb. 6:30). He went before us to prepare a place for us. Having provided the ultimate, heaven, surely He will provide all else. Heaven is a place prepared for prepared people. He never takes us to an unprepared place on earth or in heaven.

Heaven is no poets dream; it is a reality. Christ said, “If it were not so, I would have told you” (Vs.2). He is too wise to be mistaken. He is too truthful to misrepresent. He is too kind to deceive. It is the “Father’s house.” Here all hearts are focused on the Father as the head of the Family. It is harmonious.

C. He is Returning. This is present tense meaning He is coming again to take them to Himself in time for eternity.

Ultimately one of two destinations inevitably await us. There are only two choices: heaven and hell. The choice is ours.

On a lighter vein the story is told that God decided He had it with earth and was going to end things. He called Boris Yeltsin, Bill Clinton, and Bill Gates to heaven. He told them He was going to destroy the earth the next day and he wanted the three smartest people to spread the word.

Yeltsin returned to Russia and called a cabinet meeting. He announced he had good news and bad news. The good news is, God does exist. The bad news is, He is going to destroy the world tomorrow.

Clinton returned to America and called an emergency meeting of Congress. He said, “I have bad news for some of us, and terrible news for all of us. The bad news is, God is real and He does exist. The terrible news is, He is going to destroy the world tomorrow.

Bill Gates happily returned to Microsoft and said, “I have some fantastic news! First of all, I am one of the three most important men on Earth, and secondly, the Y–2-K problem has been solved.”

Heaven has many abiding places, “many mansions” MONAI, (Vs. 2). There is plenty of room. The best thing that can be said about heaven is that Christ spoke of it as “where I am” (Vs. 3). That is what makes heaven.

Dr. Kubler-Ross, Swiss-born psychiatrist, says, “Beyond the shadow of any doubt, there is life after what we call death.”

Jesus didn’t tell us all there is to know about heaven for a very good reason. We would be like a child sitting at one end of a table with a large bowl of spinach before him. At the other end of the table is his favorite cake. With that cake in sight, the spinach isn’t very appealing. If we know all there is to know of heaven, our present equivalent of spinach would not be very appealing.

It is imperative that we be prepared and assured our ultimate destination is the right one. Proper preparedness involves forgiveness: our forgiveness of others and God’s forgiveness of us.

Are you willing to forgive others? A little boy and his little sister ended their day long argument and quarrel angry with each other. About 2:00 AM the household was awakened by a terrific thunderstorm. The parents heard an unusual noise in the area of their bedrooms. The parent called out to find out what was going on. A little voice answered, “We’re in the closet forgiving each other.”

Is there someone with whom you need to spend a bit of time in the closet.

Second, have you sought God’s forgiveness and requested the gift of eternal life? If not do it now.

Christ makes a categorical statement to all the disciples which raised another question, this time in the mind of Thomas.

A. He Is The Way. “Teach me Your way, O Lord” (Ps. 27:11). Jesus’ death opened the way (Hebrews 10:20). The way is not a PROCESS but a PERSON.

“I” is emphatic, meaning, “I and no other always am the only way.” He wanted to make this perfectly clear. There is one way.

The first time the Romans assaulted the Saxons at Dover, they were defeated. The next time they landed and unloaded their provisions, set their ships on fire, and pushed them out to sea. The watching Saxons, seeing their determination, fled in defeat. With such determination, we must follow Him.

B. He Is The Truth. “Teach me Your way; I will walk in thy truths” (Ps. 86:11). He is truth personified.

C. He Is The Life. “He who keeps instruction is in the way of life…” (Prov. 10: 17). The first instruction to follow is to repent. Repentance is a picture of persons standing in a circle facing outward as they hold hands. Christ stands in the center. Facing away from Him, one sees his own shadow and cannot see his fellow persons properly. To repent is to TURN and face Him. One’s shadow is behind, the repentant now faces Christ, and can see his fellow persons properly.

Older theologians defined saving faith in terms of three words:



Do you have all three? Don’t stop short of the third.

The expression “to obey” and the word “faith” both come from the same root. “Faith,” PISTIS, means “firm persuasion.” The expression “to obey” comes from PISTEUO and speaks of acting out of firm persuasion.