Today’s reading: John 14
On the night before his crucifixion Jesus shared the passover meal with his disciples. During the course of the evening he washed the disciples feet, he predicted Judas’ betrayal, he foreshadowed Peter’s denial, and he told them he was leaving. Can you imagine the emotion in the room? The person to whom these men had pledged their 100% allegiance, the one for whom they’d left jobs, left family…left EVERYTHING just announced he was checking out. They were shocked, panicked, and had questions. Where are you going? How will we know the way?
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
Jesus heard their concerns and responded, not with the tactical answers they wanted, but with spiritual answers they needed. His answer to all their questions was simply “me”. Follow me and the rest will take care of itself. I am all you will ever need.
The attribute of Jesus I was assigned to write about today is highlighted in the last two words of John 14:6 – the life. As you may have noticed by the title of this post, I personalized the attribute and called it “My Life”. I’ll get to that a little later. Now back to the passover dinner.
After telling the disciples he was leaving, and then telling the he was the only thing they needed to know or have, Jesus had to convince the disciples that the life he was offering was better than any life they could possibly have living apart from him, on their own. In verses 14-16 he references the analogy of the Good Shepherd and his sheep from a few chapters back in John 10. In this passage, Jesus described himself as the good shepherd. His sheep know him, they listen to his voice, and trust him to guide and protect them. The payoff for doing this was not just to have life, but to have abundant life – life to the full.
I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full (John 10:9-10).
Jesus goes on to tell the disciples the father is sending a helper in his place. The Holy Spirit was coming to serve as their advocate, to guide and protect them. Finally in verse 30, Jesus gets to what I think is the most encouraging and convincing reason to choose the life he offers. Jesus reminds the disciples that he has ultimate power over Satan, evil, sin and death. He is telling them ultimate victory is guaranteed with him on their side. How could they (or you) not choose Jesus when you know he wins in the end?
I will not say much more to you, for the prince of this world is coming. He has no hold over me (John 14:30).
Jesus obviously convinced the disciples to stay the course (except of course Judas, whose heart was already hardened, and who eventually took his own life out of remorse for his betrayal of Jesus). My question for you today is this – are you convinced? Have you chosen the life Jesus is offering?
I changed the name of today’s post to “My Life” because I am a Christfollower. A life following Jesus isn’t trouble free, but it is better and more abundant than any life I could ever achieve on my own. One day, the worries and cares of this world will be gone and I will spend my life eternal in glory with him.
When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory (Colossians 3:4).
Will I see you there?