By Colleen Donahue

The disciples must have been stunned when Jesus announced that ALL of his disciples would betray him (John 13:21). No doubt they didn't feel they were hearing Him right or didn't understand exactly what he was saying.

But this was not the only bad news they would hear this night. Jesus had more for them and he delivered the news in between comfort and love like a sandwich with tough meat in the middle.

The count down to Christ's death had now started but Jesus still had some things to tell his poor quaking disciples. We'll start with the bad news.


Day 1 -Jesus is not suddenly dumping a load of bad news on his disciples. He had been telling them all along what would be coming. Let's review what He told them a little earlier. Matthew, Mark and Luke all recorded these things. As you read the verses make a list of what Jesus told the disciples to expect.
Matthew 10: 17-29 / Mark 13: 9-13 / Luke 12: 2-9, 51-53

Day 2- The apostle John goes into more detail as to WHY the disciples would be hated and persecuted.
John 15: 18-25

Let's look at these verse more closely.

Day 3- What two facts will be the main ones behind the hatred of Christians in the coming days?
A. John 15:18
B. John 15: 21,23

The main persecutors in the early days of Christianity were the Jews. Not only did they reject Christ but Jesus clearly says that they did not know God either! This is a startling fact considering the religious nature of the Jewish peoples and their pride in being God's chosen people.

Day 4- What principle still remains for anyone that is a disciple of Jesus?
John 15:20

We are not to be surprised by contrary attitudes and treatment by others for these are the same ones that Jesus faced.

Day 5- Knowledge brings responsibility. Prior to Jesus' coming, men did not have the opportunity to fully know God. They could not see and hear in person what God was like. But when Jesus came, he exposed sin and showed men how they should walk. He also provided the remedy for that sin by offering forgiveness and the power to overcome present sin.

The Jews disregarded Jesus and refused the cure for their sin. They acted as it had been foretold by David in the Psalms.
Psalm 35:19 / Psalm 69:4

Day 6- That is why Jesus said --
John 15:22-25

Today there are still those who disregard Christ, openly hate, oppose him and live as though he never came. Like the Jews they will be without excuse.

Day 7- The fact that Jesus came to be our personal coach to knowing God is unlike anything in history. Notice how Jesus answered the disciple Thomas when he asked Jesus how we could know the way to God?
John 14: 5-6

Verse 6 is truly one of the most famous and quoted verses in the Bible. But what does it mean?

Day 8- "I am THE WAY." Jesus does not just give us some advice and direction and then send us on our way. No, he guides us, strengthens us and personally directs us everyday through His Holy Spirit that dwells within us. Therefore He doesn't just tell us about the way -- but in fact HE IS THE WAY. What results for us when we accept his hand and walk with him?
Ephesians 2:18 / Ephesians 3:12

Day 9- When it comes to moral truth character matters. Many teachers teach moral truth but Jesus is the only one who could ever say, "I AM THE TRUTH". He was the only one without sin. Therefore knowing truth is knowing Jesus. What results for us when we accept the truth of Jesus Christ?
John 8:32

Notice what Jesus calls His Holy Spirit which he was soon to leave with each disciple.
John 14:17 / John 15:26

What will this Spirit of Truth guide us all into?
John 16:13

Day 10- " I AM THE LIFE." Men are always seeking for what will make life worth living. The answer is that loves makes life worth living. We want to love and be loved in return. Jesus actually showed us what real, unselfish, unconditional love (agape love) looks like. As you read these verses write out what real "agape love" looks like.
Deuteronomy 7:8 / Jeremiah 31:3 / John 3:16 / John 15:13 / Romans 5:8 / Ephesians 2: 4-5 / 1 John 3:16

Only a life lived with Jesus is really worth living.

"Jesus alone is the way to God. In Him alone we see what God is like; in Him alone we have access to God. He alone can show men God; and He alone can lead men into the presence of God without fear and without shame." William Barclay

Day 11- So when men disregard or reject Jesus they are rejecting God himself. (John 15:23) The world (human society organized without God) really dislikes people whose lives are a condemnation of its own. It's very dangerous to practice a higher standard than what the world keeps and therefore persecution will not be the end of the story.
Matthew 5: 10-12

Day 12- John speaks of two ways that Christians will be persecuted.
John 16:2

In a society where family and friends are close, to be excommunicated from the synagogue meant no fellowship or worship with others. It meant a life lived alone.

In the second part of verse 2 the Greek word for service is "latreia" which is the word used for a priest offering a sacrifice. In future days men would labor to propagate their idea of religion (not God's) which would lead to exclusion, sometimes banishment and sometimes death.

Day 13- Why is Jesus telling his disciples all of this bad news?
John 16:1

Jesus wanted his disciples to know what to expect as Christians. Why didn't he tell them everything earlier?
John 16:4

As the leader, Jesus was the one under attack. He was with the disciples and protected them. But he was soon to be gone and the disciples would be the head of the church. Now they would be the targets of hate.

Day 14- Hatred -- persecution -- excommunication --death. These were heavy words piercing sorrowful hearts. How were the disciples taking all this bad news?
John 16:6

Day 15- Once again Jesus delivered what perhaps might have been the saddest news of all. His closest friends -- the disciples would leave him alone in his hour of death.
John 16:32

Day 16- And so the bad news has been delivered. The good news is about to start!
John 16:33

Next Study: MPGC#10

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