John 16 Lesson

Three Truths That Christians Need To Accept


The Bible is often referred to as the “good news” of Jesus Christ. And rightfully so!

There are, however, some difficult truths of the Bible that we need to accept if we are going to follow Jesus with all our hearts, minds, and souls.

In today’s lesson, we will highlight three of these difficult truths.

We will then share our thoughts on why the story of Jesus is good news for those who believe in Jesus and follow His teachings.


The scriptures are our resource and only authority for learning about Jesus and what God wants us to do.

If we accept the premise that the Bible is the inspired word of God (2 Timothy 3:16-17), then we also must accept the following three scriptures:

  1. Satan is the ruler of the Earth,
  2. God allows bad things to happen to good people,
  3. It will all be worth it!

These three truths are exactly how God wants things to be. They are His plan for us. In today’s lesson, we will explain why.


Satan is referred to as the “ruler of the Earth” several times in the Bible.

That is not something that we hear a lot, but it is what the Bible says.

As you read the following four verses, consider the following question:

“Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people?”

  1. “We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one .” - 1 John 5:19,
  2. “The god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ  .” - 2 Corinthians 4:4,
  3. “The ruler of this world will be cast out.” -John 12:31,
  4. “I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me.” - John 14:30.

In these four verses, Satan is referred to as:

  • “The evil one,”
  • “The god of this world,”
  • And “The ruler of the world” twice!

We need to pause and consider what the implications are for us.

While we live on Earth, Satan rules the world.

And because he does, all of us must endure trying to be godly people in an evil world.

God allows us to suffer for three reasons:

  1. To discipline us,
  2. To teach us,
  3. To shape us into the people that He created us to be.

This may not be what we want to hear. It is human nature to hope for lives that will be free from adversity and hard times.

But that is not what the Bible tells us is going to happen.

And we must accept that. We must embrace that!

When we follow God’s path, we will be disciplined, we will be taught, and we will be shaped.

It will not be an easy life, but it will be fulfilling and one that is full of hopekindness, and love.

Understanding that Satan is the ruler of the Earth explains a lot of the tragedies and evil that we see on a day-to-day basis. 

When we understand that God is permitting Satan to rule the Earth for a period of time, it helps explain why bad things happen to good people.

We also must understand that the Bible teaches that Satan will be defeated (Revelation 20:10, Romans 16:20, Revelation 12:9), and that the faithful followers of Jesus will be with Him and His Father in paradise forever.


We discussed suffering earlier in the lesson.

Next, we want to answer the question:

Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people?

A great verse to help us answer this question is found in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount when He said of His Father:

  • “He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” – Mathew 5:45.

This scripture is both good news and bad news.

Rain is necessary for survival. It waters the plants and keeps us hydrated.

But water can also kill. There are tsunamis and hurricanes where sadly there are many people who perish.

The sun also is good news and bad news in this scripture.

The sun provides us with warmth and allows crops to grow.

But the sun can also cause droughts, skin cancer, and famine.

Mathew 5:45teaches us that bad things are going to happen to us and to the people that we love. That is not the way that we want it. But that is what the Bible tells us is going to happen.

So how do we get through it?

And where is this “good news?”

The answer to both questions is Jesus!

Because of Jesus, and the sacrifice that He made, we have hope!

And that hope is bigger than any problems that we will ever face while we are on Earth!


And when our time is done, if we have remained faithful to Jesus until the end, it will all be worth it.  

That is because our reward will be in Heaven, and Heaven is forever!

The Bible tells us that we cannot picture how beautiful Heaven will be, because there is nothing on earth to compare it to.

God created the Earth and all its beauty in only six days.  

More than two thousand years ago, Jesus left and said He was going to prepare a place for us.  

Imagine how beautiful Heaven will be, given that Jesus has been preparing it for two thousand years!

Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans:

  • “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” – Romans 8:18,

Whatever suffering we endure on Earth, it will be nothing compared to the glory that awaits the faithful followers of Jesus!!

Any suffering that we experience will be temporary. 

It will have a beginning and an end.

Heaven, however, is forever!!  

In the book of Revelation, we can read, and marvel at how glorious Heaven is going to be!  This is written to give us hope so that we can endure and persevere.

  • “And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.’” – Revelation 21:1-4.

This scripture tells us that in Heaven, there will be:

  1. No tears,
  2. No pain,
  3. No dying.

Heaven is described as a place that is more beautiful than anything we have ever seen or imagined. And it is forever!


Some parts of the Bible are easier for us to digest than others.

There are scriptures that tell us that our lives are going to get hard and that we are going to suffer.

It is human nature to want to believe that things will be different, but that is not what the Bible tells us is going to happen.

God wants us to learn how to endure,

He wants us to learn to persevere,

And then, He wants us to join Him and His Son, and all the saints in Heaven forever.  

We will end today’s lesson with scripture taken from the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans. These are the same words that we hope to be able to say when our time on Earth is done:

  • I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing. ” – 2 Timothy 4:7-8.


Virtual Bible Study

1) What did today’s Bible study make you think or feel?
2) What questions do you have?
3) How can you apply what you have learned to something specific in your life?


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Satan as ruler of the world does not reflect that the kingdom of God breaks through our world ALL the time. The analogy which makes mroe sense to me is we live in a fallen world. We are living in time between the Garden of Eden and Heaven.

John B

Amen and well said Shawn.


I agree also.

Virtual Bible Study

1) What did today’s Bible study make you think or feel?
2) What questions do you have?
3) How can you apply what you have learned to something specific in your life?


Virtual Bible Study

What does Jesus overcoming the world mean to you?

Pat Dermody

I was raised in a faith that was very authoritarian. It was very liturgical without much opportunity for pastoral care. I remained because it was comfortable. About 20 years ago, I decided to go to a different denomination. It so freed me . Now I am involved in not only reading scriptures and studying the Bible and the history of Christianity but I am going out and serving God in the real world. I realize there is so much more to being a faithful servant than going to church and reading holy scripture. That is certainly important and is food for our soul. What we learn must also be put into practice. Are we helping the sick by visiting them? Are we helping out at food banks or preparing food to be delivered to the poor? Are we listening to a neighbor who is depressed ? St. Francis of Assisi said, “Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words.”

Pat Dermody



With all of the reporting on the Coronavirus, it is wonderful to reflect on God's word and the beauty of His creation. We have hope because Jesus saved us from our sins.