Books of the Book: John

Going Away

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Deyvy Rodriguez & Jon Paulien


Series Code: JBOTB

Program Code: JBOTB00021A

00:21 Hello friends, and welcome back
00:22 to this program "Books of the Book."
00:24 My name is Deyvy Rodriguez and I am so happy again
00:27 that you can be with us in this Bible study.
00:30 And we are in the Gospel of John
00:33 and today we are on Chapter 16.
00:36 So, if you have a Bible somewhere,
00:38 I invite you to open it to this chapter.
00:41 And with us is a brilliant scholar
00:43 and I say brilliant because just the Bible applications
00:46 that he brings from the Gospel of John
00:50 as he calls it the-- it's a spiritual Gospel
00:53 and I've mentioned to him, I understand why.
00:56 And he comes all the way from Loma Linda, California.
00:59 He is the Dean of Religion in Loma Linda University.
01:03 So, Dr. Jon Paulien, welcome back.
01:06 Thank you. Thank you.
01:07 You know we are almost finished with the Gospel of John.
01:10 That's right.
01:11 You said earlier that this is your favorite gospel,
01:13 you've written three books on it.
01:16 And I should probably say that I didn't invent
01:18 the idea of spiritual gospel.
01:19 That's actually, probably the earliest
01:22 summary of the gospel.
01:24 It's very early church father like about 25-30 years
01:29 after the Gospel of John was written,
01:30 he said, you know, he just talks
01:32 about Matthew, Mark and Luke and he says, but John,
01:35 he brought a spiritual gospel.
01:37 And so already right from the beginning
01:39 they were recognizing there was something different
01:41 about this book from the other three.
01:44 Now we were talking about friendship last time.
01:47 We were. Yeah.
01:48 And I have to tell you that you and I become friends
01:51 just in producing these programs.
01:53 We didn't know each other before we started.
01:56 And I am getting to like this a whole lot.
01:59 Well, thank you.
02:00 I appreciate and I am getting to like you. Yeah.
02:03 That just you know, we are having more and fun as we--
02:05 Not that I hated you or didn't like you before,
02:07 I am just saying that you know,
02:08 It's just very interesting knowing you more and more.
02:10 Now we can just draw the curtain on that, okay.
02:14 So today, we are on Chapter 16,
02:17 I see a lot of red ink on my Chapter 14, 15
02:22 and now 16, even 17
02:24 and so we all know that those are the words of Jesus.
02:29 Apparently He is giving this long discourse.
02:32 So where are we now?
02:33 Well, one of the interesting things about it is
02:35 He repeats Himself a lot
02:37 in these chapters over and over again.
02:39 And I would remind our viewers
02:41 that we are in skipping the references
02:45 to the Holy Spirit in 14, 15 and 16
02:47 because we are going to have a whole program
02:50 on the Holy Spirit and that should be the next one.
02:53 But we are looking at each of these chapters
02:55 and Jesus constantly repeating Himself
02:57 because the disciples just don't get it.
03:00 They are truly clueless in this gospel
03:04 and that's serving John's purpose.
03:07 In that he wants us to understand,
03:09 having the physical presence of Jesus is no guarantee
03:12 that you are going to understand Him.
03:14 In fact the very humanist of Jesus
03:16 may be a barrier to receiving Him as God,
03:19 where as through the words of the disciples
03:23 and through the influence of the Holy Spirit,
03:26 people then can have a deep
03:29 and meaningful relationship with the Jesus
03:31 even though they cannot see, hear or touch Him.
03:34 Okay. And where are we picking up today then?
03:37 We will go to Chapter 16
03:40 and here He is continuing on from Chapter 15.
03:45 there were no interruptions from the disciples in Chapter 15
03:48 but when you get to 16, they start interrupting again
03:53 and their interruptions rarely glorify them.
03:57 They tend to be a little bit clueless.
04:00 But Jesus in Chapter 16 repeats a lot of the themes
04:05 that He has covered in 14 and 15.
04:07 There's the theme of the world's hatred
04:09 which we closed with in Chapter 15.
04:12 There's the theme of going away.
04:14 I am going to be going away, that happened at the beginning.
04:17 Now He comes back to it in 16.
04:20 The Holy Spirit of course is repeated all through
04:22 and we will cover that in the next program.
04:25 And He returns to the themes of prayer and love,
04:29 which were particularly strong in Chapter 14.
04:32 So 16 kind of pulls together all of the themes
04:36 that He was talking about in 14 and 15. Okay.
04:41 So why don't we get started and we can go to verse 2.
04:46 "They will put you out of the synagogues.
04:49 Yes, the time is coming that whoever kills you
04:52 will think that he offers God service.
04:55 And these things they will do to you
04:57 because they have not known the Father nor Me."
05:01 All right, so here it talks about service to God
05:04 that they will kill you
05:06 thinking they are offering service to God.
05:08 The interesting piece of that
05:10 is that the Greek word is not the normal word for service.
05:14 It's the word latria
05:15 which actually means sacrificial service.
05:18 It's the kind of service you did in the temple,
05:21 doing the sacrifices.
05:23 In other words, they think that they are portraying God
05:28 the way He should be portrayed.
05:30 People who kill in the name of God
05:33 are people who think of God as blood thirsty,
05:37 think of God as one who delights in death
05:40 but this is not the kind of God that Jesus has brought.
05:45 We become like the God we worship.
05:49 And if we worship a God
05:51 that is fearsome and threatening and so on,
05:54 we will tend to behave that way toward others.
05:58 Interestingly enough there's a faculty member on my staff
06:03 at Loma Linda University
06:05 who has been doing brain research
06:08 where they use brain scans
06:10 to actually look inside your head
06:12 and see the brain and they've come to realize
06:14 the brain is very malleable, it's kind of like Jell-O,
06:19 it's the consistency of it.
06:20 That's why it's important to wear helmet
06:22 when you are on a motorcycle, things like that
06:24 because you know, you bounce your head off the concrete
06:27 and all that stuff is sloshing around,
06:29 that's not good, you see.
06:31 So they can look inside the brain
06:33 and they've discovered that the brain take shape,
06:36 changes shape based on your thoughts and feelings
06:41 that we can actually, even older people
06:44 can change the way they think
06:46 and change the way their brain functions.
06:49 And what he has discovered in his research
06:52 that people whose view of God
06:54 is judgmental and cruel and so on,
06:57 such a view of God actually stuns the brain
07:02 and makes it more rigid and less able to function
07:06 where as person whose view of God
07:08 is kind and loving and friendly
07:11 like the God that Jesus is portraying here,
07:14 that view of God actually makes the brain healthier.
07:18 Now that's not final word all of itself,
07:21 it's a scientific word but it's very, very interesting
07:24 that the view of God portrayed in the Gospel of John
07:27 is actually healthy for us.
07:30 And here he shows that people have the capacity
07:34 to kill in the name of God.
07:36 They think they are doing God service.
07:39 They will do such things
07:41 because they have not known the Father, interesting.
07:46 They are serving God but they have not known Him.
07:51 If you serve God in cruel ways,
07:54 if you serve God in vicious judgmental ways,
07:58 you don't know God.
08:00 And God Himself comes in a different way.
08:05 It's interesting, the cruelest people of the ancient world
08:09 were probably the Assyrians and they had the cruelest gods.
08:13 Many of the gods of the ancient people
08:16 were very arbitrary, severe, cruel, judgmental
08:21 and these people behaved like the gods they worshipped.
08:26 So it's very, very important as we come to know Jesus,
08:29 He transforms our brains and even our lives
08:33 so that we become more like Him.
08:36 And the interesting thing is you would think
08:39 that someone who loves everybody like Jesus did,
08:43 someone who is gracious and kind would be very popular.
08:47 You think that, right? Not true.
08:51 The one thing most people will not tolerate
08:56 is if someone loves their enemy.
08:59 If I love your enemy
09:01 that will be very challenging for our friendship
09:04 because you want your friends
09:06 to be enemies of your enemies, you see.
09:09 And that's the way human beings are.
09:11 So a person who truly loves everybody,
09:14 having received the Spirit of God
09:16 and that attitude of God,
09:18 such a person actually is very irritating and infuriating.
09:23 And people will reconcile, enemies will reconcile
09:27 to kill somebody who loves everyone.
09:29 And that's what happened to Jesus.
09:31 Herod, Pilate and Caiaphas were enemies of each other
09:35 and yet they all came together to destroy Jesus
09:38 because they saw in His gracious loving spirit,
09:41 a threat to everything that they believed in.
09:45 Well, as the Bible says,
09:46 "You worship me with your lips
09:48 but your hearts are far from Me."
09:50 Well put, well put.
09:52 That certainly fits in there very, very beautifully.
09:56 Let's go on to verse 7.
10:00 "Nevertheless I tell you the truth.
10:02 It is to your advantage that I go away
10:05 for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you
10:09 but if I depart, I will send Him to you."
10:13 He says, "It's to your advantage that I go away."
10:18 It's better for you if I go away
10:20 and here disciples are all depressed
10:23 that Jesus is going away and He says,
10:27 "Its better for you if I go away."
10:29 I remember when I was back in college,
10:31 I had a girlfriend and she lived down in South America,
10:35 that's where her family came from
10:37 but they were now living there by the college
10:39 and we spent you know a year, year and half together
10:44 and really precious person
10:47 and I really think we wanted to make it work.
10:50 But just somehow no matter what we did it didn't work
10:54 and finally we came to the summer and we said,
10:56 "Okay, we are both going to be up here for the summer
10:58 but let's not have any relationship with each other.
11:00 We just go separate ways and see how that goes."
11:04 And as the summer went on we discovered
11:06 we couldn't stand to be apart
11:08 and we couldn't stand to be together.
11:11 It was a strange kind of experience, you know.
11:14 When we were together we were miserable
11:15 and now we are apart we are miserable.
11:17 So at the end of the summer she announces to me,
11:20 I am going back home, I am going back to my home country.
11:24 I think that's the best for us.
11:27 It will be better for you if I go away.
11:32 I thought that was crazy.
11:34 I didn't buy that for one minute.
11:36 That was the-- that was the worst line
11:38 I'd ever heard for breaking up.
11:41 Sounds like a good one though.
11:43 No word for her.
11:44 But you know the interesting thing about it is
11:47 less than a year later I met the woman
11:50 who would become my wife
11:52 and as I look back on it now from 40 years later, it's true.
11:57 It was better for both of us.
11:59 She has done very well where she is.
12:01 She is an author and a teacher
12:03 and very beloved by her people.
12:05 And similar things have happened for me.
12:09 So Jesus is looking into the future
12:12 and recognizing that yes, its painful now
12:16 but it's better for you if I go away
12:19 because if I go away the Holy Spirit can come
12:22 and the Holy Spirit will do things for you
12:24 that wouldn't happen if I was still here.
12:27 We will get into that in the next program
12:29 but just a little foretaste that Jesus recognizes
12:35 that His going away is painful as it is for them
12:38 will be a positive as well. Okay.
12:41 So well, then how do the disciples take this
12:44 because it doesn't sound very encouraging as you said?
12:48 Not at the time, not at the time. Yeah.
12:51 So then shall we keep reading here?
12:53 I would say let's go on to verse 16-19
12:55 because the verses 7-15 are about the Holy Spirit
12:59 and we will cover that next time but verses 16-19,
13:04 Jesus throws a riddle at the disciples.
13:07 Let's see if we can figure it out.
13:09 "A little while, and you will not see Me
13:12 and again a little while, and you will see Me,
13:15 because I go to the Father.
13:16 Then some of His disciples said among themselves,
13:19 What is this that He says to us,
13:21 'A little while, and you will not see Me,
13:23 and again a little while, and you will not see Me.'
13:25 And, 'because I go to the Father'
13:27 They said therefore,
13:28 "What is this that He says, 'A little while'?
13:31 We do not know what He is saying."
13:33 Now Jesus knew that they desired to ask Him,
13:37 and He said to them,
13:38 "Are you inquiring among yourselves about what I said,
13:41 'A little while, and you will not see Me
13:43 and again a little while, and you will see Me'?"
13:47 Wow, that sounds very-- even hard to read there.
13:50 Yeah, yeah. It's a riddle, you see.
13:53 And there's four pieces to this.
13:55 First of all they will see Him no more,
13:58 second, they will see Him,
14:01 third, He is going to the father
14:04 and fourth, it's going to be a little while.
14:07 And what is this little while?
14:09 So there, a little while we will see Him
14:12 and little while we won't see Him
14:13 and a little while he will go to the father.
14:16 And so the riddle is all there.
14:18 And like many things in the Gospel of John
14:20 there's a double meaning here
14:23 because on the one hand in the immediate future
14:27 Jesus is going away. Where is He going?
14:30 He is going to the cross, He is going to death
14:33 and they can't follow Him there.
14:36 But while He is going away and they won't see Him,
14:40 shortly after they will see Him.
14:43 He will be raised from the dead.
14:45 But then He is going away again,
14:49 He is ascending back to heaven.
14:51 And when He ascends to heaven,
14:53 they won't see Him.
14:55 He will go to the Father
14:56 but then eventually at the return of Jesus
14:59 they will see Him again.
15:01 So Jesus is introducing major themes,
15:04 death in resurrection, second coming,
15:07 all of that is packed in to these simple words
15:11 but unless you know that larger picture
15:13 the riddle is unsolvable.
15:15 The disciples are just spinning their wheels
15:17 trying to figure out what Jesus was saying.
15:19 Well, friends, we are going to continue
15:21 on this Gospel of John.
15:23 So stay with us after this break.


Revised 2014-12-17