As I said in my last blog, the disciples were both stunned and troubled by what Jesus had just told them. First he told them he was leaving and they could not follow, and then he told them that they would all abandon him. If that weren’t enough, he told them that Peter, who seemed the strongest of them all, was going to deny Jesus three times.
Jesus must have read their hearts, for he immediately tried to comfort them saying,
Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. (1)
In other words, “Don’t worry. I know these things sound awful. I know you can’t imagine these things happening. But God is still in control. Trust him. Trust me.”
He then gave them a glimpse of the future and why he had to go. He said,
In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. (2-3)
Here we see three promises Jesus gives us.
First, he’s preparing a place for us. If we have put our trust in him as our Savior, he is preparing a place for us in heaven. I don’t know if it’s a “mansion” as translated in the King James Version, or if it’s a deluxe condo. But whatever Jesus is preparing for us, I know it’s going to be glorious. Jesus would make nothing less.
I love the sentiment of Keith Green who wrote in one of his songs,
In six days You created everything,
But You’ve been working on Heaven [for] two thousand years.
Jesus then promises that he will come back again. The disciples were freaking out that he was leaving them. But Jesus reassured them, it would not be for forever. That he would come back. First by sending his Spirit to dwell in them, but also, someday, by coming back literally in physical form.
And when he does, Jesus promises that he will take us to be where he is. The apostle Paul writes about it this way,
For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. (I Thessalonians 4:16-18)
Think about this, though. Jesus made these promises to a bunch of people who he knew would be unfaithful to him and would abandon him within hours. How could he promise them these things? Because he wasn’t finished with them yet. And there was no way that he would ever give up on them.
And neither will Jesus ever give up on you. Whatever struggles you may go through, however badly you may fail him, he is preparing a place for you. So don’t get discouraged. Keep getting up, and pressing on.
As an old song once put it,
So why should I worry?
Why should I fret?
‘Cause I’ve got a Mansion Builder
Who ain’t through with me yet.
-2nd Chapter of Acts