“I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.” May 20, 2018
Intro: We continue to look into the “I Am” statements of Jesus in the book of John. Today we cannot begin to mine the depths of these three powerful words, so we will take a brief excursion attempting to grasp some understanding as we go along.
I don’t know about you, but when I think of the Way I think of traveling, maps, directions. Before GPS and the little voice that tells you when to turn life was a bit different in the car. Some of you may remember the conversations that would more than often end with: “Honey, why don’t you ask for directions?” (Show video clip from Steve Smith, a.k.a Red Green leader of the Possum Lodge)
1. The Way: It’s most basic meaning is simply the route someone takes, the course, or the journey. Jesus takes this concept and makes it much more meaningful. For him it is the choice that we make to follow after Him. (read John 14: 1-6) Matthew 7:13-14 The idea is not that there is not enough room for a multitude on this road, rather the idea is that the road is much more difficult and therefore fewer will choose to walk on it. Discipleship is costly! All throughout Jesus’s teaching he makes it very clear that following Him is not the easy road!! We choose to follow Him initially and every moment thereafter. I believe Jesus would be shocked by our easy believism theology that crystalizes its teaching in concepts like “the sinners prayer”. It is easy not to be a disciple of Jesus, but it leads to destruction. It is hard to be a disciple of Jesus, but it alone leads to life. Like Red Green, we would rather not ask for help. We want to avoid the hard road. We have found easy believism to be very comfortable.
2. The Truth: In O.T. it is a reality which is to be regarded as firm and therefore solid, valid, or binding. Compare this to what is taught as truth today…always changing, my truth, etc. In N.T. we see concepts like non-concealment, discloser of self, and transparency. Truth means the full or real state of affairs. Truth gives us a sense of reliability, sincerity, genuineness, and honesty. Truth is the divine reality. It is true teaching and what leads us to faith. Compare all of this to the duplicity, fakeness, and politics of today. We have become people that believe nothing in the media…sceptics, because there is no truth. There is Truth! It is Jesus!
3. The Life: A Christian epigraphy found chiseled into stone during the early period of persecution of the church…light and life. They share the same Greek letter and they were written in the sign of a cross in a time when it was unacceptable to portray the sign of the cross. “John’s conception of life as present is even more radical. This is connected with the fact that he traces the resurrection of Jesus to the fact that as the word of God and eternal Son o God He is life and has life in Himself, not merely as the power of His life as a living creature, but as the creative power of God. He has a life and He gives it up to death, but His life is not interrupted by death. His life is described as the light of humankind even before the incarnation (1:4), for in the dependence of the whole of creation on Him there lies the possibility that man may have life by an apperceptive return to his origin in Him as the revelation of God. He is the revealer of God. John 8:12.
Concluding: John 14:8-15 Let us look at the words of Phillip and put ourselves in his shoes. I want you to see Jesus love filled yet penetrating look when he says to you, “Don’t you know me, Steve, even after I have been among you such a long time?” (finish reading passage concluding with vs. 15.)