Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Even When You Fail, Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled

"Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice. Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me." (John 13:38; 14:1)

In most Bibles, chapters as well as verses divide up the Gospel and other Biblical records.

Yet those are ultimately artificial, and can give us a misunderstanding.

Jesus was speaking to Peter in John 13:38.

Then in John 14:1, we see Jesus is still speaking to Peter and to the rest of the disciples.

Notice that Jesus is telling Peter, the rough-necked fisherman, that even though he will betray him, his heart should not be troubled.

Even when you and I fail, Jesus still loves us.

He cares for us, even when we mess up. He stands with us even when we fall from Him, depending on our own strength.

Remeber how Jesus reached out and helped Peter, when he was about to sink into the water?

"But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. 31And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?" (Matthew 14: 30-31)

In the above account, once again we see Peter not keeping his eyes fixed on Jesus His Savior.

But Jesus didn't let him drown! He reached out and helped him.

Let not your heart be troubled, beloved child of God! Even if you fail, He is still ready to stand by and help you. When you fall into the pit, He will help pull you out!

Jesus: The Lamb Who Died for Our Sins, and Who Then Clothed Us in His Righteousness

"He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth." (Isaiah 53:7)

I reread this passage a few days ago.

It was interesting to me how the prophet writes that Jesus, our Passover Lamb, was lead to the slaughter, then he compares him to a sheep about to be sheared.

In shepherding, a sheep is sheared first, then slaughtered.

Why was the order reversed in this passage of Scripture?

Remember, Isaiah is talking about Jesus, our Savior.

He is also expounding on all that Jesus did for us:

"For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." (2 Corinthians 5:21)

God the Father instituted an incredible exchange for everyone of us at the Cross!

He took our sins, and gave us His righteousness!

Jesus' death on the Cross ensured the shedding of His blood, which cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7, 9).

Then Jesus gave us His righteousness:

"For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ." (Romans 5:17)

Shearing of sheep produces wool, which in turn forms robes, clothing, and other textiles.

Throughout the Old Testament, righteousness is presented as a robe!

"I put on righteousness, and it clothed me: my judgment was as a robe and a diadem." (Job 29:14)


"I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels." (Isaiah 61:10)

In Zechariah's prophesy to Joshua, the Angel of the Lord gives Joshua a new garment to replace a filthy coat that he is wearing:

"Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. 4And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment." (Zechariah 3:3-4)

And even in the New Testament, we see linen as a picture of Jesus' cleansing work in our lives, making us righteous:

"After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded." (John 13:5)

Towels, made with hte wool of a sheared sheep!

When we medidate on the Finished Work, let us remember that God's Ways are not man's ways. Jesus died for us sins, and by doing so He could then accord to us His righteousness.