1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also”
This is one passage that the Rapturist has used to deceive the masses about the end times, by building in the them a false hope.
A minister once said on TV that the Rapture have not taken place because Jesus is busy building mansions for each of the children being born into the faith .Then I wondered if Jesus will ever come because women are busy giving birth daily.
That’s how far we can go with our wrong belief system in giving false hope to our members who believe in every word we preach and teach.
So truth be told, almost every Christian, because of the way we have been programmed, sees John 14:1–3 to be the hope of the Church, supposedly promised by Jesus for us to ‘escape’ the persecution of the so-called ‘Antichrist’, either through the ‘rapture’ or through death. Then we go up to heaven above, and collect keys to beautiful buildings that Jesus has been constructing for us for the past 2,000 years and yet unable to finish maybe.
Let me help my audience here a little bit. One of the major keys in accurate Biblical Interpretation is AUDIENCE RELEVANCE. By that I mean, who was speaking, and to whom and why, what was the prevailing situation then?
If you can answer these questions, you readily get an answer to any passage in question.
But the point is, what exactly was Jesus talking about? What led to this statement of His?
What hope was he really presenting to the Church?
What does the “mansion” and “father’s House” etc stand for?
These are the things we hope to examine in these shot posts as per the request of a brother online.
In this case Jesus was speaking to his Disciples by saying –“Let not your heart be troubled. And where? In the upper. Why? Because they were disturbed when he told them in Chapter 13, that he was going to be betrayed and killed at Jerusalem. And that one of them with him on the table will be the one to betray him.
So you see, you can’t get the answer to this passage without first going back to chapter 13 and what led to the statement.
“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believed in God, believe also in me. In my father’s house are many mansions…” John 14:1-2.
Now why did He make the statement? The following reasons;
(1) The disturbances that was in the heart of the disciples as a result of the prediction of His betrayal and subsequent death. John 13:21–30;
(2) The soon to be denial of Jesus Christ by Apostle Peter. John 13:36–38.
So ultimately, Jesus made these statements to strengthen their faith as a result of the confusion that was already developing in their hearts. Come to think of it.
For the Apostles to begin to hear that the Messiah they have so trusted in, that they have walked with for 31/2 years, performing signs and wonders, will suddenly be betrayed, arrested and killed?. To them all hope as to what the future holds and even as to whom else to believe in as their leader was lost. That was the thought Jesus discerned in their hearts that led to His making the statement in question.
“Let not your heart be troubled…” John 14:1. Why? “But now I go my way to Him that sent me, and none of you asked me whither goest thou? But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart” (John 16:5–6 KJV).
Note, that Chapter 16 is a continuous dialogue from Chapter 14.
However, since “…ye believe in God… (John.14:1 KJV)”,That he has promised to protect his own in the Old Testament see Deuteronomy 33: 3 Yea, he loved the people; all his saints are in thy hand: and they sat down at thy feet; every one shall receive of thy words.
Isaiah 43: 13 Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work, and who shall let it?
Then “…believe also in me” that the sheep which the Father has given to me “… no man is able to pluck them out of my father’s hand…” John 10:29 KJV.
So, this is the trouble they had and Jesus went into series of explanations and clarifications to strengthen their faith.
Now as the discussion continued and Jesus began to explain to them, His death, resurrection, the work and release of the Holy Spirit (Chapter 14 through 16), the faith of the disciples began to rise as true understanding was beginning to dawn on them.
As a result, they declared, “…by this we believe that thou comest forth from God” John 16:28, 30.
Jesus then replied “… Do ye now believe? Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered every man to his own, and shall leave me alone, and yet I am not alone, because the father is with me. “These things I have spoken unto you, that IN ME ye might have peace, IN THE WORLD ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” John 16:31-33.
THE RAPTURE QUESTION
Having looked at the above passages of Scripture, can we say that Jesus had the issue of ‘rapture’ in mind while talking to the Apostles and of course His disciples?
NO! How could He be talking of ‘rapturing’ the saints and at the same time be telling them to be brave in the same world? Brave towards what then?
Here again, the indication is that they will have tribulations in the world, but because they are IN Him, they shall have peace. See 1 Thessalonians 5:23.
Now what constitutes THE WORLD that will produce the tribulation?
The Greek word used here is KOSMOS which speaks of the system of the world. It speaks of mankind; the ‘human race’ that is hostile to God, those who hate Christ and His disciples, orderly arrangement, i.e. decoration; by implication, the world (in a wide or narrow sense, including its inhabitants). (John 7:7, 15, 18, 19, 17:14, Revelation 13:8).
This is why the record says:
“He was in the world (i.e. took His residence amongst mankind) and the world (mankind) was made by Him, and the world (mankind) knew Him not” John 1:10.
Therefore, Christ in His intercessory prayer for the saint to be able to resist the evil system of man, said,
“I pray for them, I pray not for the world (the antichrist system of man), but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine…
I have given them thy word (that they might trust and resist the evil one with the word Psalms 119:41–42, 50, 161 even as He did in the wilderness Matthew 4) and the world (beast system of man Revelation 13:8) hated them because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world…” John 17:9, 14, 16.
Then in verse 15, he prayed.. “Father, I don’t ask you to take my followers out of the world, but keep them safe from the evil one” CEV.
“I am not asking you to remove them from the world, but to protect them from the evil one” JB.
So here He prayed against the RAPTURE, Can you see it ?
Why did Jesus pray this prayer?
It is simply that through the Church, the world that has so hated Jesus may believe in Him, whom they never believed in (John 1:10, 16:9), for the world’s sin is unbelief (John 8:21, 24; 46:15; 22), which must be exposed by the Holy Spirit through the Church.
Therefore Jesus prayed: “Neither pray I for these alone (early apostles) but for them (you and I) also which shall believe on me through their word That they all may be one, as thou father, art in me, and I in thee; that they also may be one in us, that the world may believe that thou has sent me” John 17:20–21.
Did you see it? Praise God! Therefore it is the presence of the Church in the world that will eventually make the world-mankind, to believe in Jesus, whom they had never believed in even while He was alive physically as a human being. So, should there be any ‘rapture’ of the Church, it would mean that Christ’s prayer was not answered by God. And the whole world (mankind) for whom He died (1 John 2:2) will eventually perish because of their unbelief.
Basically therefore, John 14 is to encourage the saints to be able to fulfill the will of God for us. The Saints are the salt of the earth and the light of the world-Mankind (Matthew 5:13-14) even as His life is the light of men (John 1:4).
It is this life that overcomes the world (system of men–Antichrist). Therefore be of good cheer!
UNDERSTANDING THE TERM, “FATHER’S HOUSE”
“In my ‘FATHER’S HOUSE’ are many mansions…” John 14:2 KJV. Now you already know why Jesus made that statement, so now what exactly does the term Father’s means .. What is a house? How does the Bible apply this term? What did Jesus really mean by “My father’s house”?
The Hebrew one for House is “BAYITH” – a house (specifically Family, etc), temple. And in the Greek language, it is ‘OIKIA’ – an abode, by implication, a FAMILY (specifically DOMESTIC) home, house(hold). The Noun form of ‘OIKIA’ is OIKIAKOS and it means familiar i.e. RELATIVES–they (them) of (his own) household.
It is clear from the above definition that, when we are talking of a ‘house’ as used in the scriptures, we are referring to a realm of existence, a family that is made up of individuals who are close to one another, and not necessarily a physical building. Look at the followings on how the word is used in the Bible…
e.g. “ABRAHAM’S FATHER’S HOUSE”. Abraham, when talking to his servant to go and get a wife for his son Isaac, from among his people said: “The Lord God of Heaven, which took me from “MY FATHER’S HOUSE” and from the land of my kindred… thou shalt go and take a wife unto my son from thence” (Gen. 24:1–7 KJV)
“… The Lord who brought me out of ‘My father’s household’ and my native land…” NIV.
“… The Lord who brought me from THE HOME OF MY FATHER and the land of my RELATIVES…” NCV.
So, Abraham’s Father’s House was his immediate family, from amongst whom God called him. Not a physical building .For God did not call him from his Father’s physical building but from amongst his relatives.
Again, we see that “JOSEPH’S FATHER’S HOUSE” was his brothers who went to him in Egypt: “And Joseph said unto his brethren, and unto his “FATHER’S HOUSE”, I will go up, and shew Pharaoh, and say unto him, MY BRETHREN, and MY FATHER’S HOUSE, which were in the land of Canaan, are come unto me” (Gen.6:31 KJV) “…My brothers and my FATHER’S FAMILY… have come to me” NCV.
Friends, this is also clear that Joseph’s Father’s House that went to him in the land of Egypt were his immediate brothers, and the extended family circle. Here again we see that Joseph never carried a physical building called the ‘father’s house’ to Egypt. (See Genesis 41:51, 47:12, 50:8)
But his extended family circle was his father’s house . “…and so Joseph continued to live in Egypt with ALL HIS FATHER’S FAMILY…” Genesis 50:22 NCV.
Similarly, we read of RAHAB’S FATHER’S HOUSE, which were her RELATIVES in Jericho. (See Joshua 2:1, 12, 18; 6:25) “Rahab the prostitute, her FAMILY (father’s house) and all who were with her…” NCV.
Gideon had a father’s house “…Oh my Lord, wherewith shall I save Israel? Behold, my ‘family’ is poor in Manasseh, and I am the least in “My father’s house” Judges 6:15 KJV.
It absolutely clear, that the phrase “father’s house” means nothing more than a person’s relative. David’s Father’s house was his relative that went to him at the cave Adullam (1 Samuel 22:1;)
In the same vein “Moses was nourished up in his father’s house three months” Acts 7:20.
May I be bold to tell you, my dear reader, that as far as the phrase “Father’s house” is concerned, it refers to the members of an individual’s particular family?
Therefore the best way to understand the language of Jesus is that, He was referring to God’s family in which He is the first-born son. So Jesus wasn’t in any way referring to a physical building up there in heaven but His family members.
Don’t be deceived; with a false hope .Jesus never promised us a physical building up in heaven nether was Jesus promising us rapture in John 14.its a religious belief.
So then what was Jesus Fathers house?
To be continued..