Thursday, January 16, 2014

The One and Only

“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life…” John 14:6a

Jesus warned in Matthew 7:14 that the way to eternal life was “narrow,” so narrow in fact that comparatively few people find it. That’s narrow. And in this verse in John, Jesus tells us just how narrow the access to God is. He asserts…

“[I am] the way…”

Our pluralistic society that considers equality to be the highest form of morality would change this to “I am a way.” And any religion or segment of that religion that believes Jesus meant what He said when He made this claim is considered bigoted and troublesome. But there it is; if Jesus is not the only way to God, as He claimed, there is no gospel. You see, what keeps us from being able to reach God is sin (Isa. 59:20), and the only way it could be removed was the death of Jesus Christ on the Cross. “…God was in Christ; reconciling the world unto himself…For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:19 & 21). Do you think God would have let His Son suffer the horrors of Calvary if there were going to be other, more tolerable ways to reach Him? It’s unthinkable. And if we have any question about whether to believe Him, Jesus says…

“[I am] the truth…”

Paul said, “I speak the truth in Christ” (1 Tim. 2:7); but Jesus said, “I AM the truth.” Every word He spoke, every thought He had, every motive of His heart was unquestionable. His credentials are impeccable. In fact, He was truth encapsulated. “In whom [Christ] are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col. 2:3). All you need to know in order to establish your eternal future can be found in what Jesus said and did while He was here on the earth. The New Testament writers, and especially Paul, expounded and expanded upon all that led up to, and all that accompanies our salvation experience. But when Jesus settled once and for all His preeminence as the only way to God, and then facilitated it by His death and resurrection, the path was laid out, and all that is left is for us to believe and accept Him, the Truth. But some may say, “Yes, but I can’t live the Christian life!” To that man or woman, Jesus promises…

“[I am] the life…”

You’re right; you can’t live the Christian life. Neither can I, but I do. John, speaking of Jesus’ Incarnation in chapter one of this book, says of Him, “In him was life; and the life was the light of men” (1:4). Jesus was alive from all eternity, but when His life was confined within a human body, it was done for the purpose of bringing the light of that life into the heart of man. He brought His life with Him to give for our redemption and to share for our sanctification. This is more than I can comprehend, but not more than I’ve been able to experience. He gave us a good illustration of how this works. He said in John 15:5, “I am the vine, ye are the branches…” The life flows from the vine into the branches, and the branches bear the fruit. An apple tree doesn’t bear apples to become an apple tree; it bears apples because it is an apple tree. Sometimes the fruit isn’t as good as at other times; but the fact remains, there will be fruit. And if the branches are pruned and tended to, the fruit will be better…and sweeter. No, you and I can’t live the Christian life, but we can have the life of Christ pulsating within us to energize us toward the things of God. And this same Life will overcome death and the grave (Jno. 13:25-26).

Thanks for allowing me to squeeze more sweetness today from these words of our Lord. My heart was moved and my soul refreshed. He started out the chapter this way: “Let not your heart be troubled.” Those were troubling times for the disciples, and these are troubling times for us. The Bible speaks of a time when men’s hearts will fail them for fear of the future. This may have been the case in the past, but it’s definitely true now. Yet, for me, though I may stumble, I’m going the right way; though I may not have all the answers, I know where to find them; and when my strength and resolve are wavering, the Life that resuscitates my soul continually will carry me all the way home to the Father. Of this I am sure. And I found it all in Jesus Christ, the Life, the Truth, the Way.

The One and Only!

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