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The time for Jesus to die was quickly approaching. In the days that led up to the crucifixion, Jesus would pour Himself into preparing the disciples for His departure and teaching them what they needed to know for life after His death. The disciples were confused and even talked among themselves about what Jesus meant by all of this. They were likely still trying to reconcile in their minds how they thought the Messiah would be a conquering king, and yet Jesus came as a humble servant. There will be a day that our Savior returns as the conquering King. But in this first advent, He came not to conquer the powers of Rome but to conquer our hearts.
The words He spoke to the disciples encouraged them before His death, and they would have clung to them after His death. When persecution and suffering for the sake of this precious Gospel would come, they would hold on to the moments they had with the Savior. They knew not just in their minds but from experience that Jesus was the One who changed everything. The words bring comfort and hope to us as well.
Jesus told them that they would weep and be sorrowful but that their sorrow would turn to joy. I can't imagine the grief that must have come over the disciples as they watched their dear friend and Savior be crucified before their eyes. The pain and grief must have been unimaginable. Perhaps after all His explanation, it just still didn't make sense to their finite minds. And yet, what joy would come when they would realize that this very thing that was bringing so much sorrow was the event that would change the whole world. The death of Jesus would provide the way of redemption! Hope and joy for the entire world would come after the greatest sacrifice was made.
Because you know that God works all things together for good—for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28), and that He promises to turn your mourning into dancing and clothe you with gladness so that you will sing His praise (Psalm 30:11-12), how does this help you overcome the challenges of life?
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