“I have spoken of these matters in figures of speech, but soon I will stop speaking figuratively and will tell you plainly all about the Father. Then you will ask in my name. I’m not saying I will ask the Father on your behalf, for the Father himself loves you dearly because you love me and believe that I came from God. Yes, I came from the Father into the world, and now I will leave the world and return to the Father.” Then his disciples said, “At last you are speaking plainly and not figuratively. Now we understand that you know everything, and there’s no need to question you. From this we believe that you came from God.” John 16:25-30
And the disciples said, “From this we believe that you came from God.” The disciples were a lot like us — we need proof in order to believe. After all the miracles of Jesus, all the healings, teachings, raising people from the dead, now they believe? Why wouldn’t they believe before? And if they really believe that he is from God, then why will they desert him during his trial and crucifixion?
Jesus admits that his teaching in parables does not always help us understand the plain truth. He tells his followers that soon he will stop speaking “figuratively” and will tell us plainly about the Father. For the “Father loves you dearly because you love me…”
Yet Jesus continues to teach. Even though he knows our disobedience, and our betrayal, Jesus is faithful in telling us about his love for us and our connection to the Father. He tells us that he came from the Father, will leave the world and return to the Father. And it’s at this the disciples understand his speech and say, “From this we believe that you came from God.”
What does it mean for us to believe? What does it take for us to put our whole faith in his love? What Jesus taught in three years and how he lived, died and loved is enough. It’s enough not only to believe in him but to love him and follow him completely.
So if we believe, we must act upon our beliefs. We must turn our hearts toward faithfulness and our intentions to please the Father. We believe but now we must walk as Jesus walked.
Personally, I wrestle with this in my own life. I know the good I ought to do and sometimes I even do it! Sometimes I am like the disciples and still waiting for Jesus to convince me of his love. He is who he said he is and wants my love, obedience and holiness.
Why not believe in Jesus, the Son of God, and the Savior of the world…
“O Lord God, you are good. In the midst of my struggles, you are faithful. When my love fails, you never change. You are the way, the truth and the life. Help me know the truth and to live according to your ways. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen