Reading: John 16 v 16 – 24
Home Group Questions
- What struck you about what you heard on Sunday morning (or from the interview with Will van der Hart). Was there anything you didn’t understand or agree with?
- Reread John 16.16-24.
In John 16, we discover the incredible idea that God, in Christ, has experienced human suffering. Interestingly, Jesus focussed less on his own suffering and more on the disciples’ experience of grief and loss, followed by wonder and joy.
Do you think people today understand the idea of God suffering? How does it make you respond?
- At the cross, we see God bringing good out of evil and suffering. Have you ever experienced God bringing good out of something bad? What happened?
What good might the Lord bring out of our current difficulties? Talk about this and take some time to pray together.
NB v 23-24 can sometimes be confusing. The idea seems to be that, after the Resurrection, the disciples will finally understand everything that Jesus has been talking about and won’t need to keep asking questions. This seems to explain what Luke describes in Luke 24.45 – ‘Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures’.
Instead of asking questions, the disciples’ focus can turn to asking in prayer in Jesus’ name, with the joyful expectation and experience of the Father responding to those prayers. Again, we see plenty of this in the book of Acts. This doesn’t mean every prayer gets answered, of course. However, it reminds us that prayer in Jesus’ name flows from the incredible revelation that he is who says he is and that, in the crucifixion and resurrection, he did what he said he would.