Explore The Bible Study: I Will Come Again

10:23 AM

I’m sure we have all heard this statement or used this statement at some point in our lives: “I can’t wait to show you what I did while you were away.” We have all experienced times when we have prepared something in anticipation for someone returning that we felt excited about showing them when they returned. The Explore the Bible Study: I Will Come Again, will challenge you to consider what you are doing to honor Jesus as we anticipate His return.

In the passages leading up to our main passage of study, Jesus has just finished washing the disciples feet, they have eaten the Passover meal together, Jesus reveals that someone at the table will betray Him, and His betrayer (Judas) will leave the dinner to do his evil deed. After Judas leaves, Jesus prepares the remaining disciples for His death. 

It’s in this discourse that Jesus encourages them to honor Him as they awaited His return. This is where we can learn from the conversation how we should honor Jesus as we anticipate His return.

First, we should honor Jesus through our love – John 13: 31-35

The wheels were in motion that would lead to Jesus’ death. Judas had left to betray Him, and now Jesus speaks directly to His remaining disciples regarding what is about to take place. Jesus used this moment to speak of His glorification. Jesus relayed the fact that, although His crucifixion would not take place until the following day, He was glorified now. This included the entire period of His atoning sacrifice, resurrection, ascension, return, and reign. Not only was He glorified, but His death also glorified the Father. Philippians 2:8-9 reminds us that Jesus “humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death—even to death on a cross. 9 For this reason God highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name . . .”

Now Jesus turns to His disciples and expresses something that we have probably heard from our own parents at some point, “I am going to be gone for a while, and you can’t come with me.” Then he tells them, in John 13:34-35, what they should do while He is away. 

In what ways did the disciples struggle with doing what Jesus commanded as they watched Him die on the cross and even after He arose from the grave?

Do believers struggle with this today? If so, why?

Based on Jesus’ statement, what is one of the greatest results that can come out of believers learning to love one another?

What can we do to learn how to honor Jesus through our love for one another?

This single action—love one another—is how people can recognize true disciples. Christians honor the Lord in many ways, but if our activities lack Christlike love, the world won’t see Jesus. Jesus then has conversation with Peter who is processing all this and trying to understand exactly what Jesus is saying. It’s out of this conversation that we see another way we should honor Jesus.

We should honor Jesus through our loyalty – John 13:36-38

Notice that Jesus reemphasized what He had just said because He knew Peter was going to argue with Him. He told Peter that he could not follow Him at this point but would follow Him later. Peter, the one to whom Jesus said, “follow me” was not being told by Jesus that He couldn’t follow Him. Peter boldly said that His loyalty to Christ was such that He would be following Him even unto death! Still Jesus said “no.” 

Then Jesus tells Peter that he isn’t as loyal as he thinks he is. He will betray Jesus instead of die for Him. His loyalty will be tested, and it will fail.

In what ways do we assume we will never be disloyal to Christ? Why do we need to be careful when we assume we will remain loyal in these areas of our lives? How can we take what we know will be Peter’s disloyalty and learn how to remain more loyal to Christ in our own walk with Him?

We are a lot like Peter. Sometimes we make commitments without counting the cost. Thankfully, Peter’s story encourages us to recall that Jesus knows our weaknesses and is willing to restore us when we fall short. He continues His work in us so we can move past our failures and follow Him.

Finally, Jesus emphasizes that His listeners must hold on to their belief as they observe what is about to take place. This is where we learn the third way we honor Jesus.

We should honor Jesus through holding on to what we believe – John 14:1-6

These disciples' hearts were absolutely troubled by what they heard, but Jesus said they must keep believing in Him as they have believed in God.

What circumstances might challenge a believer to doubt their belief? How can what Jesus said next in this passage help us today to hold on to what we believe? How does this communicate that one who truly believes can’t walk away? Who determines our security in Him and our future?

Believers honor Christ by believing in Him as they await His return. Anticipating Jesus’ return does not mean waiting passively—it prods us to engage the world around us. People without Jesus need to know Him and be saved. Each believer must reflect the life of Christ so others can see Him as He really is and experience the life-giving and life-changing power of Jesus. The lost must see through believers that Jesus truly is the only way, the only truth, and the only life. When we struggle with believing this we communicate to a lost world that there might be another way, truth, or life outside of Jesus.

Evaluating our lives and the ways in which we honor Jesus

Are you currently honoring Jesus by the way that you love other believers? Is there something you have done to dishonor that love Jesus says we are to have for one-another? If so, consider the actions you need to take to regain the honor that was lost.

Did Jesus’ words about loyalty remind you of times when you haven’t been loyal to Christ or when you were tempted to be disloyal? If so, what actions do you need to take to honor Him with your loyalty?

Are the circumstances you are facing, the life you are living, or the struggles you are having causing you to struggle with your belief in Christ as the way, truth, and life? Talk with someone about this and remember the promises of Jesus in this passage that He is “going to prepare a place for you." And that He "will come again and take you to [Himself], so that where [He is] you may be also.”

The downloadable teaching helps provide more details for this study, along with some tools you can use in guiding a group Bible study. 

Download PDF Version

Download Word Version

LifeWay Explore The Bible Resources

These teaching helps are intended to be used as a supplement to your study of Lifeway's Explore the Bible curriculum resources. Portions of this material are taken directly from content copyrighted to Lifeway Christian Resources Explore the Bible and is used with permission.  This material has not been reviewed by Lifeway Christian Resources. 

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