By Arch Hoercher
Jesus was with His 12 handpicked disciples celebrating the Passover. He told them that He was going to be leaving them very soon and where He was going they could not follow. Jesus had spent 3 years with these men teaching them. But they were confused and frightened and did not understand what He was talking about. Thomas spoke all their minds when he said in John 14:5 (NIV), “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus answered in John 14:6 one of the most controversial statements He had ever made, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” One thing for sure is that this statement is not politically correct.
Did you know that only 25% of the world’s population claim to be Christian? The world says that there are many ways to God and Heaven. One of the most predominant opinions is that religion can get you to God. Not just one religion but many can accomplish this. Any religion will do. The other way to God is through righteousness, one’s own righteousness through your own works. Many believe that it is like a point system and there is a scale. On one side of the scale is all your sin and on the other side are all the points you have earned for doing good things such as giving to the poor, wearing the correct religious garments, praying so many times a day in a certain direction, crawling on your knees in prayer for a specified distance, or for doing great and wonderful deeds. Some people will tell you that they believe that they will be going to Heaven because they have been pretty good people. Others believe that the way to God is like going to Lowes. You can build and construct your own way to heaven by being a fixer upper.
In this statement, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Jesus disputes all these alternative ways and states that He is the one and only way to God and Heaven. How can He make this claim? What is it about Him that can actually say that? If He is who He claimed to be He can say it and it is the truth. Jesus, on several occasions, claimed to be God. That He and the Father are one. In John 10:30 (NIV) Jesus said, “I and the Father are one.” In John 14:9 (NIV) Jesus said, “Don’t you know me Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father.” In John 8 (NIV) Jesus was even more direct and said, “’ Very truly I tell you, ‘ Jesus answered, ‘before Abraham was born, I AM!’” A statement that the Jews would have immediately recognized as the name of God. If Jesus’ claims to be God were true then this statement is also true because He said it.
C.S. Lewis wrote in his book “Mere Christianity”, “A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher; he’d either be a lunatic – on a level with a man who says he’s a poached egg – or else he’d be the devil of hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God; or else a madman or something worse.” “You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intent to.” So a choice has to be made. He either is who He says that He is – the Son of God or He is a madman and a liar. It is your choice.
Romans 3:10 (NIV) reads, “There is no one righteous, not even one.” Romans 3:23 (NIV) reads, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Isaiah 64:6a (NIV) reads, “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.” The point is that we are by nature sinners. But there is a way out. In 2 Corinthians 5:21 (NLT) the Apostle Paul writes, “For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.”
The ultimate barrier between man and God is sin. Man could never accumulate enough points to outweigh his sin. God is a holy God and cannot even look upon sin. Jesus Christ was the sacrifice to cover the sins of all men forever. He lived a sinless life and became sin for man and was sacrificed on a cross to pay for that sin debt. When you look at that scale with all your sin on one side of the scale, when Jesus is placed on the other side of the scale it throws your sin out of the scale as far as the east is from the west. Try to measure that distance. But when God sees you through the sacrifice of Jesus you are seen as clean and as white as snow. Your sins have been erased.
Not all roads lead to God. The world and other religions believe that you can earn your way to God by something that you can do within your own power. It could be through some religious ceremony or through good works. The world believes that there are many roads to God. There are even some that believe that you can get to God by going the wrong way down Jesus’ one way street, i.e. they believe that they already are gods. Jesus said that the road is broad that leads to destruction. The one and only way to God is through Jesus Christ the Son of God – the way and the truth and the life. This is a long way from being politically correct and many will say that it is too narrow minded. But it still is the only way. To get to God you must go through the Son. It is a free gift of His mercy. God’s grace does not require any works to accomplish it because Jesus already did all the work that is necessary.
If your home was being broken into, would you call the plumber? If you had a heart attack, would you call a teacher? If your house was on fire, would you call your doctor? If you want to be with God for eternity and go to Heaven, you need to call on the Savior, Jesus Christ. He said, “Come to me for I will show you the way – because I am the way.”