“I will not leave you as orphans.” John 14:18 (NIV)
An orphan is a person who loses both parents through death.
This was exactly what the disciples were about to experience.
Christ had been like a father to them, and refers to them as “my children” (13:33). Now He would be taken from them.
For the disciples, it seemed that their whole world was imploding. Three years had passed since they had heard Jesus say, “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.”
They had left their nets and followed Him. During these three years, Christ had become the center of their world. He was the focus of their hope and their joy. Now Christ would be taken from them and they would enter the orphan experience.
That is what happened on Good Friday. Jesus died. They took His lifeless body down from the cross. They sealed the corpse of Jesus in the tomb, and the disciples began to experience life without Jesus.
When Jesus said, “I will not leave you as orphans,” the disciples did not really understand what He was saying. After His death, the disciples were in shock. All they had was a kind of “orphan faith.” They had no idea what the future held for them, or that Jesus would be resurrected.
What if the story had ended there—no resurrection, no sending of the Holy Spirit? Do you think Christianity as we know it would exist? Why or why not?