150524 John 14:26-27

Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 May 2015 Written by Pastor Schmidt

Text: John 14:26-27
Theme: Enjoy the Peace Your Risen and Ascended Savior Gives You Through the Holy Spirit

Imagine for a moment that you are on a battlefield. Bombs and gunfire are going off all around you. This "noise" of war lasts day after day. Then, suddenly, it becomes completely quiet. Peace has been reached. The bombing and gunfire have stopped. You now are able to enjoy the quiet sounds of peace. Now imagine that you are your doctor's office. He asked to see you again, after running some teats on you earlier in the week. All week you have been wondering what the results of the test would be. "Do I have cancer?" "Do I have some other type of sickness?" The "noise" of these questions race through your head day after day, until finally you sit down with the doctor and are told that you are healthy and fine. Suddenly your mind becomes quiet. The wondering and the concern are gone. You now you are able to enjoy peace.

But what if the outcome would have been different? What if the bombing didn't stop? What if the health report from the doctor wasn't good news? At times of difficulty and struggle we find ourselves looking for someone, anyone to give us a word of comfort and peace. There is one with us today that wants to bring each of us such a word of peace. Listen to the promise that our Savior spoke to his disciples, and that he speaks to each one of us here this morning. We read the words of our loving Savior as they are recorded for us in John's Gospel, chapter 14, verses 26-27:

26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

I want to take a quick, little survey this morning. Raise your hand if you enjoy receiving gifts. Why is it that each one of us enjoys getting gifts? Maybe you like getting gifts because you enjoy ripping open the package to see what is inside. Maybe you like gifts because they are a way for someone to show you their love and support. And I'm sure that most of us would say that we like getting gifts because they are free to us. We didn't have to do anything to get the gift. It didn't cost us anything. In love for you and me, the Savior has a gift for us. As we tear open the pages of God's Word, and look inside our Bibles, we see the free gift of peace offered to us by our Savior, Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit. As Jesus says, "the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you."

What kind of peace are we talking about? Some in Jesus day thought he would bring political peace. They wanted him to set up a kingdom on earth, to free them from the Roman government. Many people today want Jesus to return to the earth to bring political peace to the nations of the earth. But what does the Lord say about the peace he has to offer? We heard our Savior say, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives." What does Jesus mean? What kind of peace does the world give? One author has written, "The world's peace consists of empty words with no lasting value. It is an earthly peace which all too often becomes an illusion, a vanishing dream." The sinful world offers peace through the things of this world. The sinful world would have us believe that the more things we have, the more money we have, the more friends we have, the more we will be at peace. But we know that those things are here today and gone tomorrow. What is left to offer us peace when the money runs out, when the material things disappear and our friends are gone?

In sharp contrast to the peace offered by the sinful world, is the peace offered to us by our one and only Savior, Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit. Jesus alone has silenced the threatening bombs of the law. Jesus alone has cured us of the cancer of sin. As we celebrated only a little more than a month ago, Jesus Christ offered himself as the payment price for all sin. Our Savior lived, suffered and died to win our forgiveness; to bring peace between our holy and perfect God and us. The glorious victory of Jesus over death and sin means that he is able to offer to you and me a peace that will never run out or go away. Day after day, sin after sin, the Lord says, "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you." Listen to how God's Word talks about this gift of peace that Jesus and the Holy Spirit give to us. First, from Paul's letter to the Christians in Rome. At the beginning of chapter five, the Holy Spirit led Paul to write "Since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand." And from Paul's second letter to the Corinthians, chapter five we read at the end of that chapter, "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." Enjoy the peace your risen and ascended Savior gives you through the Holy Spirit: the peace of forgiveness of all your sins and a life that never ends in the perfect peace of heaven.

I would like to go back to that section of Paul's letter to the Romans that I just read for you. Following the verses I just read, Paul wrote, "We rejoice in our sufferings..." And in Psalm 34, King David was led to write, "I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. My soul will boast in the LORD; let the afflicted hear and rejoice." Rejoice in suffering? Praise the LORD even in times of trouble? My dear friends in Christ, enjoy the peace your risen and ascended Savior gives you through the Holy Spirit for it replaces all trouble and fear.

Our loving Lord says to you and me today, "Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." As children of our Father in heaven you and I do not have to be afraid when we face the troubles and fears in our lives. Our Savior-God makes a promise to you and me that in his own time and in his own way he will make all things that happen in our lives work out for our eternal good. He will do this in one of three ways: either he will rescue us from ALL troubles and call us home to his side in heaven; or, by his almighty power, he will make the trouble go away completely; or (and this is most often the case) the Holy Spirit will strengthen us through his holy Word to withstand the trouble that has come to you or me.

Yes, because of sin that is in the world, times of trouble may come to us. But, at just this time in our lives, the loving Savior says, "Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." The peace that Jesus has won for you and me means that we are now able to flood the throne of our loving God with our prayers, confident that he will hear and answer every prayer for our good. In love for us, the Lord has charged his holy angels to guard and protect us day after day. Again, we read in Psalm 34, "I sought the LORD and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. This poor man called, and the LORD heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them." And in Psalm 91 we read these words, "He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone." Enjoy the peace your risen and ascended Savior gives you through the Holy Spirit for it replaces any trouble or fear you may have.


Are you troubled by a particular sin? Do you have fear that there is no way you will be forgiven for what you have done? Find the peace that our gracious Savior freely gives to you through his blood shed on the cross. Is there a certain trouble or difficulty that you are going through right now? Know that you are not alone. Know that the peace of your Savior, Jesus Christ, given to you through the Holy Spirit, will replace any troubles or fears you may have. Listen again to the loving words of Jesus our Savior when he promises you and me, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." Amen.

 

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Compelled by the love of Christ, St. Matthew’s Evangelical Lutheran Church and School seek to reach out to our families, community and world, using Law and Gospel to make disciples, growing and nurturing them in their Christian faith and life.

 

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Oconomowoc, WI 53066
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