I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life


Just another controversial statement to add to the long list of fairly offensive things Jesus said.

Before his arrest and crucifiction, John 13-16 records Jesus spending some time with those who were closest to him. These 12 men, the disciples, had spent years travelling with him, learning from him, having their eyes opened wide by the things he said and did. They believe he is the messiah, or christ – the one God had promised to send to the Jews to fulfil his promises – but they don’t yet understand how he is going to do so.

Wanting to prepare his disciples for his coming execution, he gives them the following words of encouragement: “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

The destination is the Father. The end goal of our faith is not peace, health, comfort or even eternal life. The end goal is to be with the Father – and the more we come to know him, to see what the Bible says about him and experience what he is like for ourselves – loving, faithful, just, kind, holy, a father orders of magnitude more wonderful than any earthly dad – the more this comes to be our heart’s desire. Eternal life, even in a world with no death or tears or suffering – would still be hollow, if the Father wasn’t there.

Jesus, and only Jesus, is the Way to him. No one else – no person, no programme, no system or deity mankind has dreamed up since its dawning days can rival the Father, or grant us entry into his presence. It took Jesus – God himself, becoming human, shedding his own blood on our behalf to carve that way for us. Nothing and no one else will do.

Jesus is the Truth. He alone reveals what the Father is like. Just a few verses later Jesus is able to state that “whoever has seen me, has seen the Father.” Hebrews 1: 3 describes Jesus as the “radiance of the glory of God, and the exact imprint of his nature.

And Jesus is the Life. In John 10: 18 he says of his own life, “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again.” Now, anyone cane make that claim, but you do have to back it up by coming back from the dead. Jesus rose from the grave, and never returned there. He alone is the pathway to eternal life, and the statement is as real and extraordinary now as it was 2,000 years ago. If you want to get to the Father, there’s only ever going to be one way – follow Jesus.

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