April 2 – Gospel Readthrough – John 16

Read John 16:1-33

Fanny Crosby, at 6 weeks old, caught a cold that caused an eye inflammation. The doctor instructed her mother to apply mustard compresses to the eye, which damaged the optic nerve resulting in blindness.  Fanny was raised by her mother and grandmother after her father passed away. Fanny’s grandmother helped her memorize passages of the Bible.  In 1825 she was examined by a surgeon, who told her that her condition was inoperable and permanent.  In spite of her blindness Fanny Crosby wrote many hymns, one being “Blessed Assurance.”  She had a “Blessed Assurance” of her life with the Lord.  In John 16, the Lord is speaking to His disciples to instill in them a:

“Blessed Assurance” of the Promised Advocate

But very truly I tell you, it is good that I am going away.

Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you;

but if I go, I will send Him to you.  

John 16:7

The promised Advocate will prove the world to be wrong about 3 things:

V 9 – Sin:  The Advocate-the Holy Spirit-convicts the world of unbelief

V10 – Righteousness of Jesus: The Holy Spirit’s coming is proof of Christ’s exaltation to God’s right hand (Acts 2:33). 

V11 – Judgment:  The prince of world is condemned and will be judged.

The promised Advocate is a distinct person with a proper name, the Spirit of Truth (vs. 12). The Advocate also has a mission to guide believers into all truth (vs. 13) which brings comfort. The Advocate will make the truth, that comes directly from Christ, known. (vs. 14).  There is a line in the hymn “Blessed Assurance” that says, “washed in His Spirit, washed in His blood”.  Do you know if you have been washed in His Spirit?  Have you acknowledged that you are a sinner in need of the cleansing blood of Christ?  Do you believe that His shed blood was for YOU?  Have you confessed your sins to Him?  Have you invited Him to be the Lord of your life?  If so, then you have been washed in His Spirit and washed in His blood!!!

“Blessed Assurance” of His Promised Return

“In a little while you will see me no more,

and then after a little while you will see me”

John 16:16

The disciples were confused. How would Jesus be gone but then be seen again? We know, that at His resurrection He showed Himself to be alive, with many infallible proofs.  At His ascension, He withdrew out of sight, but WILL return again. Jesus tells the disciples that the world will rejoice that He is going away, but the disciples will mourn.  However, their grief will turn to joy.   Jesus tells the disciples, in verse 22, that the reason for their joy, is that He will return to those who wait for Him. Jesus also tells His disciples that this joy cannot be taken from them, it is an eternal joy.

The line, “watching and waiting, looking above,” draws our attention to the blessed assurance of His return.  How are you “waiting” for His return?

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine
O what a foretaste of glory divine
Heir of salvation, purchase of God
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood

This is my story, this is my song
Praising my Savior all the day long

Perfect submission, all is at rest
I in my Savior am happy and blessed
Watching and waiting, looking above
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love

Both the promise of the Advocate and His return are expressions of His love for us. The last line of the song says, “filled with His goodness, lost in His love.” What does it mean to be lost in His love? It means to be so in love with Jesus that He’s all you think about.

This is the kind of love He has for you. He loves you so much that He doesn’t want you to be alone.  He has given you the assurance of His promised Spirit. He loves you so much that He desires to be with you.  He has promised that He will return.  Fanny Crosby’s story was one of affliction, but also one of praising her Lord.  What is your story?  Will it be a story of your Blessed Assurance in the promises of your Savior?  Are you lost in His love?

He is lost in His love for you!

Because of that, we should be “Praising our Savior all the day long!!”

Janene Nagel

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