John 16:16-18

Jesus went on to say, "In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me." At this, some of his disciples said to one another, "What does he mean by saying, 'In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me,' and 'Because I am going to the Father'?" They kept asking, "What does he mean by 'a little while'? We don't understand what he is saying."

In this passage, Jesus says something that confuses the disciples: "In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me." The disciples are perplexed. They don't understand what Jesus means by "a little while."

On one level, Jesus is referring to his death and resurrection. In a little while, he will be crucified and buried, and the disciples will see him no more. But then, after a little while, he will rise from the dead, and they will see him again.

But this being John’s Gospel, there's also a deeper meaning here. Jesus is alluding to his ascension to the Father and the coming of the Holy Spirit. After his resurrection, Jesus will be with the disciples for a little while, but then he will ascend to heaven. The disciples will see him no more in the flesh. But after a little while, the Holy Spirit will come at Pentecost, and through the Spirit, the disciples will see Jesus again in a new way.

This idea of "a little while" speaks to the already-but-not-yet nature of the Christian life. We live in the time between Jesus' first coming and his second coming. In this time, we experience both the presence and the absence of Jesus.

On the one hand, Jesus is with us always through his Spirit. We can know his presence, his comfort, his guidance. But on the other hand, we don't see him face to face. We still live in a world marked by sin, suffering, and death. We still groan, waiting for the full redemption of our bodies (see Romans 8:23).

But the promise of "a little while" gives us hope. The separation we feel from Jesus is only temporary. The struggles we face are only for a season. One day, Jesus will return, and we will see him face to face. We will be with him forever in the new heavens and the new earth.

As we reflect on this passage, let's ask ourselves: How do I experience both the presence and the absence of Jesus in my life? How does the promise of "a little while" give me hope in the midst of life's challenges? How can I live in the joyful expectation of seeing Jesus face to face?

May we hold fast to the hope of "a little while," knowing that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us (Romans 8:18).

God bless you.

More in this category: « John 16:12-15 John 16:19-22 »
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 12:1-8
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 12:1-8
Read and reflect on the gospels with Aneel Aranha — one little bite at a time. To receive these via WhatsApp, please message "subscribe" to +91 93214 56817. For other great resources by Aneel Aranha, visit https://aneelaranha.com/
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 11:28-30
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 11:28-30
Read and reflect on the gospels with Aneel Aranha — one little bite at a time. To receive these via WhatsApp, please message "subscribe" to +91 93214 56817. For other great resources by Aneel Aranha, visit https://aneelaranha.com/
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 11:27
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 11:27
Read and reflect on the gospels with Aneel Aranha — one little bite at a time. To receive these via WhatsApp, please message "subscribe" to +91 93214 56817. For other great resources by Aneel Aranha, visit https://aneelaranha.com/
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 11:25-26
The Bite-Sized Gospel with Aneel Aranha — Matthew 11:25-26
Read and reflect on the gospels with Aneel Aranha — one little bite at a time. To receive these via WhatsApp, please message "subscribe" to +91 93214 56817. For other great resources by Aneel Aranha, visit https://aneelaranha.com/

Load More