Source Of Joy
Let Him whisper to you, "It's alright. Cheer up, I'm here."
Alright, thank you very much. And hello again, radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing alright? I trust so. Bless your heart. This is your good friend, Bob Cook, and we’re back again looking at the sixth chapter of the Gospel of John, right in the middle of the story, what happened when the disciples started across the Sea of Galilee, the Lord Jesus behind in a mountain praying and now he’s coming to them, and they saw him, and they were afraid. Matthew says they cried out. He said, “It is I, be not afraid.” One of the other gospel writer says, “Our Lord Jesus said, ‘Be of good cheer! It is I, be not afraid.'” Mark says it that way in Mark 6:50, and I think Matthew does as well, let me look. It comes in about Matthew 14 as I recall, “And the Lord Jesus came to them there on the water and they were afraid,” and let’s see what he says. He says, “Be of good cheer.” That’s right. Mark 14:27, “It is I, be not afraid.”
Be of good cheer. Be of good cheer. This is an expression that I just want to drop into your heart. There are different times when the Lord Jesus says cheer up. You know what they are? The first is in the matter of sins forgiven. Matthew 9:2, “Son, be of good cheer. Thy sins are forgiven.” Our Lord Jesus spoke this to the man who was paralyzed and who had been brought by his friends in order that the Lord Jesus might heal him. And before he healed his body, the Lord Jesus dealt with that which was the great problem in his life, which was his sins and he said, “Cheer up, your sins are forgiven.”
You know, when you bring your sins to the Lord Jesus Christ, He forgives, He cleanses, and then He forgets. The only person in all of the universe with the ability absolutely to forget is God. Memory is built into your bones all through eternity, you and I will remember some things. The rich man was reminded by Abraham, “Son, remember that thou and thy lifetime hadst thy good things, likewise Lazarus his evil things. But now that he is comforted and thou art tormented. And beside all this there’s the great gulf fixed.” “Son, remember,” memory will be operative in your being for all eternity but God has the right to forget and he says, “Their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more forever.” Oh, thank God for a Savior who can look at me and say, “Cheer up, your sins are forgiven.”
Then there was another time, and that’s the one that we deal with here in a moment of stress and crisis. The disciples cried out, they were buffeted by the waves. They were not making any headway because the wind was blowing against them, and here comes this apparition they thought a ghost, we would call it “walking on the water”. They cried out for fear. He says, “Cheer up, it’s I, don’t be afraid.” Now the second place where you can cheer up in life is when you sense the presence of your blessed Lord in the trials, and stresses, and crises of life.
Now, it’s human to get afraid, it’s human to get hurt, it’s human to cry, it’s human to feel all of the stresses and buffetings of our life. Being a Christian does not guarantee that you’re going to have some kind of emotional armor plate that will keep you from ever getting frightened, or scared, or hurt, or discouraged, or whatever. We are, after all, human beings but we do have recourse, thank God to our Savior who looks in upon us and he says, “Cheer up, I’m here.” That, beloved, makes all the difference, “I’m here. It is I, be not afraid. Cheer up,” says Jesus to you, beloved, “I’m here.”
Oh, somebody’s going through the wringer, somebody’s in real problem situations in your life, someone’s in a crisis, you don’t know which way to turn, somebody’s heart is breaking because of what people have done to you, some mother or father grieving over a prodigal son or a wayward daughter, some wife grieving over a straying husband, some husband grieving over a wife who has rejected him and gone away. All of the problems that people have, heartaches and heart breaks, stresses and hurts, they’re there, it’s part of living, isn’t it? The only answer I’ve got, I can’t tell you why these things happen except that we’re members of a sinful human race. But I can tell you that if you’re trusting the Lord Jesus Christ, you’ll hear him say, “Cheer up, I’m here.” And when Jesus is there, everything is alright.
A dear lady who worked with us went through a series of troubles. Her eldest daughter was tragically killed in an accident on the railroad, actually fell or was thrown from the open door of a railroad car onto the concrete platform, and was killed. Tragic, tragic death. All of us grieved so over that. Not long afterwards, this lady had some problems, didn’t feel well, went to the doctor and found out that there was a malignant growth proceeding in her body, treatment, surgery, more treatment, and now she faced the fact that she never would get better but that she was gonna get worse. She was still working, part time at least. And she came into the office one day, said, “I wanna talk with you.” And frankly, I didn’t know what to say to the dear lady. What do you say to someone who has just received a death sentence? There are not many words that fit in that situation. And so I just said, “Dear friend, I love you and I’m praying for you and with you that God will get glory and that you’ll be sustained through all of this.”
We talked awhile and then we had some prayer together. And I’ll never forget what she said to me after we concluded our time of prayer. I prayed and then she prayed. Beautiful prayer of commitment of herself to the great physician, whatever He wanted to do. She opened her eyes, lifted her head, looked at me, smiled, and she said, “It’s alright. It’s alright now.” And she must have seen some flicker of either surprise or maybe unbelief in my eyes. And she said again with emphasis, “Brother, it’s alright. It really is alright now.” And she walked out of the office with her head held high and went on through the following months of treatment and suffering, and treatment and suffering, and finally slipped away into eternity.
Oh, when Jesus is there. My dear friend when He’s there, He says to you, “Cheer up! It’s alright, I’m here.” And like that dear lady did that day in my office, you can lift your head and say, “It’s alright now, Jesus is here.” Oh, let Him do that for you, beloved. Let Him do that for you. Some of you need that so bad today. Let Jesus into the situation and let Him whisper to you, “It’s alright. Cheer up, I’m here.”
Well, there’s another time when our blessed Lord said, “Cheer up.” Do you know when that was? John 16:33 is the passage. And I’m gonna turn the pages of my big Bible over so I can read it. I think I could quote it because that’s one of verses that I learned when I was just a little boy. “‘These things I have spoken unto you,’ Jesus said. ‘That in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer. Cheer up! I have overcome the world. Cheer up, I have overcome the world.'” Now He said, “In the world you shall experience troubles. Jesus said that so you and I needn’t be surprised when trouble comes our way. But He said, “Cheer up, I’ve overcome the world.” And you see, the overcoming part is not in changing the circumstances but in putting you through the circumstances victoriously. Thanks be unto God which always causes us to triumph in Christ and makes manifest the perfume of His knowledge by us in every place.
Paul in talking about the believer says in 2 Corinthians, remember that passage in 2 Corinthians 4? I love that. He says, “Concerning the believer that we are troubled on every side but not distressed.” You don’t have to be shook. “We are perplexed but not in despair,” you never give up. “We’re persecuted but not forsaken,” you always have the presence of your blessed Lord even when pressures and people are on you. “Cast down but not destroyed,” that means knocked down but never knocked out. Hallelujah. Oh, see, the victory that God gives you. “Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” This does not guarantee that you won’t have the pressures, or the troubles, or the heartaches, or the pain, or the tears. All of these things come to all of us and they come oftentimes because you’re a believer.
Jesus said, “In the world ye shall have troubles.” Tribulation is our word “troubles.” But he says, “Be of good cheer, I have overcome.” It’s already an accomplished fact. You don’t have to say, “Well, I hope the Lord will see me through. It’s already an accomplished fact. We won because Jesus is the victor. “Be of good cheer,” he says, “I’ve overcome.” We know that the game is won, the battle is won, the contest is over, Jesus is the winner.
Paul the Apostle heard from our Savior when he was a captive there in Jerusalem before being sent to Rome, and says the Lord stood by him and said, “Don’t be afraid. Cheer up, Paul. As you have born witness of me in Jerusalem so you have to testify for me in Rome. Cheer up, you’ve gotta witness.” And I think this is something that each of us needs to be reminded off. Not only sins forgiven, thank God for that. Not only His presence in the storms of life, thank God for that. Not only the assurance that He is the winner and we win with Him, thank God for that. But also, “Cheer up,” he says, “You’ve gotta witness.” You have a job to do.
Am I talking with somebody who’s given up on yourself? You say, “Well, there’s nothing left for me to do.” Maybe you’re anchored to a wheelchair, maybe you’re in a retirement facility somewhere, maybe arthritis has crippled you or a stroke has immobilized you, and you say, “It’s all over.” No, it’s not all over. You still can be a blessing. You can still smile. You can still say a word for your Lord. You can still write a postcard now and again, or use the telephone, or you can pray clear around the world before breakfast.
You have a job to do, beloved. Don’t give up. And for all of the able-bodied young men and women and grownup folk and middle-aged people to whom I’m speaking, Oh, our Lord Jesus is saying to you today, “Cheer up. I got a job for you.” There is something God has for you that is especially your assignment today. Seek His face in prayer. Listen to what He says and then obey Him. He’s got a job for you to do. Wonderful, when the Savior says, “Cheer up.”
Father God, thank you for the cheer ups that come to us from our Savior, the Lord Jesus. Help us to live for Him today. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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