Through the Word in 2020 #170 – Dec. 9 / “I go to prepare a place.”

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I was still a young Christian when someone told me that the chapter and verse divisions we have in our Bibles were not inspired like the text itself. They are a human means devised to help us locate things easily. Most of the time they are just what we need and do not make a huge difference in how we read the text. Until we get to a portion like John 13:36-14:14. Noting it here, will lead us into something truly spectacular.

This is Through the Word in 2020. Where today’s readings also include Revelation 10-11:14 and Amos 2:4-5:27.

I’m Reid Ferguson.

The rooster will not crow before you deny me 3 times, Jesus told Peter. And if you put a chapter break here, you miss the rest of what Jesus was saying in context. Yes, you’ll deny me Peter, but let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.


In the same breath with which Jesus foretells Peter’s fall, He also comforts His petulant child. And if that was all we had to consider today, it should be enough. Our Savior knows full well every rebellious thought and sin we will ever commit against Him Beloved.

And loves us no less.

More, that is just where He meets us by His grace. Indeed, He was perfectly aware of every sin you and I would ever commit BEFORE He came and died for those sins, shed His blood to cleanse us of them, and rose again for our justification.

He is never taken off guard by our failings.

Never shocked.

Never moved to think He made a mistake in saving us.

Never thrown.

Never discouraged.

For the One who began this work in us has committed Himself to see it all the way through to completion. He counted the cost ahead of time. He knew what He was in for. He will not fail. And so He can say to even you today, weary, failing Christian, “Let not your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.”

And then, as though that is not enough to be too good to be true – He goes on to promise the eventual goal of His saving, rescuing power: That He has left to go and prepare a place for us. For we, His fumbling, sinning, grievous, foolish sons and daughters who believe. So that when His work in us is complete, we may be with Him and He with us in such unbroken intimacy and sweetness that our minds are unable to comprehend it now.

Another thought.

Some wag, years ago quipped that if God created the world in only 6 days, then what must this place be like He’s been working on for 2,000 years? No wonder the Scripture says that no eye has seen, and no ear has heard, in fact, no one has even imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.

Prepared not for those who showed themselves to be stellar disciples and worthy of it: but for those who love Him.

A place He is preparing

That I might dwell with Him

Crafted by Divinity

All light – no corner dim

And all this time in Heaven

God’s genius, love and craft

Impossibly imagined

His hand brings all to pass

What one deserves such wonders?

NOT ONE – ’tis all of grace

That we the sons of Adam

May look upon His face

To revel in His beauty

‘Tis Heaven’s glad employ

Unending treasure plundered

In unending waves of joy

No pain, no sorrow enter

No tears – but those in praise

No mourning, death or darkness

No grief in all this place

Abundance, glory, beauty

All wonder, awe and love

Sweetness, grace and blessing

In Christ’s own home above

The fullness of the Spirit

The Father’s smiling face

The Son in risen glory

The felt Triune embrace

No sin, no sin, no sin there

No sin without, within

Redemption’s plan full wrought out

In Christ, all summed in Him

And there with Him forever

In sweet, familial bliss

We’ll bless the Lamb who bought us

Whose love has fashioned this

God willing, we’ll be back tomorrow.

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