Written by Reuben M. Bredenhof |
Saturday, August 27, 2022
It’s not enough to have found the way to God, knowing who Christ is. It’s not enough to have learned much truth about God. We also need someone who can make us alive. And this is who Christ is: “I am the life.” He restores our life to how it was always meant to be: enjoyed with God, even in his very presence.
Someone’s last words are important. When a loved one speaks just before he passes away, you should listen carefully.
This is what’s going on in John 14. Jesus is with his disciples in the room where they have celebrated one last Passover. But celebration is far from their minds, for the Lord is about to be betrayed and arrested. Soon He’ll be dead. The dark shadow of the cross is looming over his words in verse 6,
I am the way, the truth, and the life.
The next days were going to be unspeakably painful. Yet it had to be this way: the cross was needed because our sin had estranged us from our holy Creator. Our unholiness meant we were banished from God’s presence and barred from ever coming back on our own. Only God could open another way. So on this night before the cross, Jesus announces the gospel by saying that He is “the way.”
We get a picture of this from the ancient world. Imagine a powerful king seated on his throne. Access to his presence is carefully controlled by one of his officials. Not just anyone can approach—and certainly not uninvited. If you dared to come near, it’d probably mean a summary execution.
But supposing that the king had a cherished son, he would put aside the requirement. No permission needed: his son could freely enter. And even the friends of the son, if they accompanied him, could go in to see the king.
That’s who Jesus is: He is the beloved Son. And when we sinners go with Christ, He is our way back to the heavenly Father.
When Jesus says, “I am the way,” He says He is willing to take us by the hand and bring us into God’s presence, even into the glory of God’s holiness. Because Christ died for sin, the way to God is now open.
You’re allowed to pray to God whenever you want. You’re allowed to meet with God in worship every Lord’s day. You’re allowed to hear God’s voice in the Word as often as you open it.
There is just one requirement to go this way: be united to Christ by faith. Remember who was allowed to go in and see the great king: only those who are the friends of the son.