From Sorrow to Joy

by | Jun 14, 2020 | 0 comments

John 16:16-33. These notes accompany the sermon, “From Sorrow to Joy,” found here:

Big Idea:  At any time, a believer can move from sorrow to joy by abiding in our Lord Jesus Christ who has overcome the world.


  • Questions of the disciples in this passage: 
  • John 13:24-25, John (Peter), “Lord, who is it?”  
  • 13:36, Peter, “Lord, where are you going?”
  • 13:37, Peter, “Lord, why can I not follow?”
  • 14:5, Thomas, “Lord, we do not know where you are going.  How can we know the way?”
  • 14:8, Philip, “Lord, show us the Father and it is enough for us.”
  • 14:22, Judas, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?”
  • Note – John 16:5, Jesus says, “none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’” – they asked in 13:36, since then they left Jerusalem and went walking – perhaps hours.  It seems they are done asking questions.
  • John 16:20, “Your sorrow will turn to joy.”
  • When thinking of the disciples’ sorrow, it’s important to consider that they had been with Jesus about 3-1/2 years, and then abandoned him at his arrest. 
  • John 16:28, now stated plainly, “I came from the Father and have come into the world, and now I am leaving the world and going to the Father.”

Sorrow to Joy

  • Connect John 16:20, “Your sorrow will turn into joy,” with John 16:33, “In the world you will have tribulation.  But take heart; I have overcome the world.”  Notice the parallel?
  • Note that “sorrow to joy,” is a common theme in scripture that runs parallel to “suffering to glory,” and “humiliation to exaltation.”  See Matthew 5:3-12; Luke 24:26; Romans 8:18; Ephesians 2:1-10, 3:13; Philippians 2:5-11;  Galatians 2:20; 1 Peter 4:13, 5:10;


  • Abiding Includes:  Obedience, Bible study, love, asking, receiving.
  • Abiding Yields:  Joy!
  • Follow the Joy:  John 15:11, 16:20, 16:24.
  • See also:  John 17:13; Acts 13:52, 15:3; Romans 14:17; Hebrews 12:2; James 1:2; 3 John 4.


  • Abide in Christ!   Make use of the spiritual disciplines of reading, studying, memorizing, and meditating upon God’s Word; worshiping God; enjoying accountable and confessing fellowship with his people; praying; obeying; giving; and bearing witness. 
  • Together, become an abiding church. 

Pray for the Lord Jesus Christ to become your healthy obsession, your dwelling place, and your friend.  Contact your church leaders for opportunities to partake in the ministry of the Word of God. 

About Eric Newcomer


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