It’s the night of His betrayal. It’s the night of their last supper together. It’s a night which, before it’s over, will result in outward testing, inner turmoil, and a trial like no other trial. Expectations would be dashed. Hope would be seemingly crushed. And confusion in front of a Roman cross would reign. And in preparation for what lay before His own, Jesus says to them, “Let not your hearts be troubled.”
They are barely into the evening and already things are being turned upside down. Jesus the Master, in an unprecedented act, has washed their feet. And then a betrayer has been outed and has skulked into the darkness leaving only the eleven and no small amount of confusion. And though the rest sought to pledge their allegiance to Him, Jesus said at least one of them would deny Him three times before the rooster crows. The evening is shaping up to be one like no other. Unsettling. Unpredictable. Unavoidable.
And Jesus says, “Let not your hearts be troubled.” Refuse the agitation. Combat the inner commotion, the anxiety, and the stirred up mind. Stand fast against the disquietness and restlessness. How? Believe in God. Believe in Me. Because you know the way.
“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me. In My Fathers house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to Myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” ~ Jesus
(John 14:1-4 ESV)
“You know the way.” That’s the phrase that reverberates as I hover over this passage this morning.
So many things they didn’t know. Too much to come that they wouldn’t understand. But Jesus says, calm your hearts because you know the way. Believe in what you have laid hold of and let it provide the stability you need for what remains unknown. Trust in what has been revealed and it will be sufficient to carry you through what is yet to be experienced.
And if that was the “secret sauce” to getting through that night for His disciples, how much more is it for us in our nights of confusion? They were the first graduating class, the text books not even written yet. And we have the full counsel of God available to us accompanied by a live-in Teacher ready to illuminate to us all things concerning our great Savior, the Good Shepherd, Jesus the Christ.
Believe in God; believe also in Me . . . you know the way . . .
And so, while we may not know all there is to know, we know the way. The way of salvation. The way of sanctification. The way of glorification. We know the way to where He is and to the place He is preparing.
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life.” ~ Jesus
(John 14:6 ESV)
How I can take for granted what I know. How easy to lose the sense of awe and wonder that I have any understanding or appreciation at all for things unseen, for matters concerning eternity. That I should know that Jesus is the Son of God come to redeem and reclaim. That I should own Him as Lord for “no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit” (1Cor. 12:3). And it’s this knowledge that Jesus says I am to draw upon in order to calm the troubled heart.
Dwelling on what I don’t know does nothing to quite the disquieted spirit. But having faith in what has been revealed, believing what I do know–and I know the way–that’s the balm for the troubled heart.
Many things about tomorrow
I don’t seem to understand
But I know who holds tomorrow
And I know who holds my hand – Ira Stanphill
All by His wondrous grace. All for His everlasting glory.