THE WAY, THE TRUTH & THE LIFE


The Way, the Truth & the Life

No. 2 in our short series

‘Preparing for the Coming of the
Spirit’ –

You will find the recorded version of this talk here on Ascension’s web site for the next 2 months

I want us to be listening to how the Spirit is speaking to us about how we should be living in the Spirit today. Particularly as we come to pray over Ascension – Pentecost that people may come to know Jesus (as called by the Archbishop)

Readings, John 14.1-14.                       1 Peter 2.2-10

  • I Am the Way the Truth and the Life.

 

Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”

6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

7 If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is.[c] From now on, you do know him and have seen him!”

 

I spoke about Thomas a few weeks back.

He asked questions when he didn’t understand.

 

To many that is not only a bold statement but one which ignores all other options. Jesus goes on to say that He and God are one, another very bold statement. Both are at the centre of Christian belief, One God Father, Son and Spirit.

Not three gods or multiple gods of which Jesus is one, but only one God which Jesus is. Jesus is God come down as man to show us God, how He thinks, how He acts and what His nature is.

” Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father!”. If this is true then we have to respond to it in some way.

 

How do you respond to this statement from Jesus?

 

Jesus also said

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home.[a] If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?[b] 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.”

 

But Thomas like many didn’t understand

He had no idea what Jesus mean by trust in God.

Or what the Fathers home was.

What needed to be ready, where was this place?

 

Can you answer these questions?

 

  • Trust in God and Jesus [no other Gods but me]

Jesus said “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

 

I AM was the name God used to Moses in Exodus.

The one and only God, there are no others but Me I Am God.

 

So here Jesus is saying that He is the same God as scripture shows. The same God as met Moses.

Therefore Jesus is saying He is God and if you have trusted God you can trust me.

If you trust me you can trust God.

 

God brought His people out of slavery to a new home,

I Am is doing the same for you but this time the new Kingdom is not of this world.

 

His Spirit, the Spirit of God, will be there to show us the way to this kingdom and how to live as if we are already there.

 

  • Seeing God the Father through Jesus [Jesus shows us the Father, the Father is like Jesus]

 

8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.”

 

Philip wants to see God the Father, seeing God will satisfy him.

I doubt he is alone in this, many want to see God.

 

 

9 Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father! So why are you asking me to show him to you?

10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me?

 

Jesus also said in John 10 30 ‘The Father and I are one’

 

Jesus is sure that seeing Him is the same as seeing the Father.

Looking at what Jesus did and how He acted shows us how the Father acts and what He wants doing.

 

We can know God though Jesus, they are the same.

 

  • We are the living priests of God, through Jesus, God’s people [we are to reflect God as Jesus did]

 

If we are following Jesus, living the way and the truth, we will reflect Him in our Life into the world around us, just as a priest would.

 

Priests back then where thought of as an extension of God, showing and telling the people what God wanted. Performing sacrifices.

 

1 Peter 2

4 You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple. He was rejected by people, but he was chosen by God for great honor.

5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests.[a] Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God.

 

 

John 14

12 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father. 13 You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father. 14 Yes, ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it!

 

As the new temple, which is made of those who follow Jesus, build on Jesus the cornerstone.

We are all to act like priests, offering sacrifices to God the Father.

 

Not animal sacrifices but sacrifices of our own body. Giving ourselves to Follow Jesus and His ways.

Doing the things Jesus did.

 

Healing the sick.

Blessing the poor and outcasts.

Looking after the orphan and widow.

Loving others as much as we love ourselves.

 

Priests are supposed to act like the god they follow, they show god to the world and people around them in their life.

Doing the same things as Jesus, God on earth, did.

 

1 Peter 2 9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests,[g] a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.

 

This we can only do when filled and powered by His Spirit.

 

 

  • We who trust will never be disgraced, abandoned

[Jesus was not abandoned neither will we be]

 

1 Peter 2

. 6 As the Scriptures say,

“I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem,[b]
chosen for great honor,
and anyone who trusts in him
will never be disgraced.”[c]

 

Isaiah 28

16 Therefore, this is what the Sovereign Lord says:
“Look! I am placing a foundation stone in Jerusalem,[d]
a firm and tested stone.
It is a precious cornerstone that is safe to build on.
Whoever believes need never be shaken.

 

Both Isaiah and Peter tell us that those who trust in the Cornerstone, that is Jesus will not be shaken or disgraced.

Jesus followers will not be abandoned just as Jesus was not abandoned by the Father during His time on earth.

 

Deuteronomy 7

6 For you are a holy people, who belong to the Lord your God. Of all the people on earth, the Lord your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure.

 

God chose His people,

First Adam and Eve.

Then Abram, then Jacob and Joseph.

Then the 12 tribes through Moses.

Now He choices each of us through Jesus.

 

 

We are chosen adopted as His Holy people.

Or as Clare put it last week we are His sheep and He is our Shepherd.

He knows each of us by name and will look after us.

 

We will be filled with His Spirit and guided by His Spirit.

 

1 Peter 2 10 “Once you had no identity as a people;
now you are God’s people.
Once you received no mercy;
now you have received God’s mercy.”

 

As far as God is concerned only those who follow His path are a People all others are a non People.

 

Deuteronomy 32

21 They have roused my jealousy by worshiping things that are not God;
they have provoked my anger with their useless idols.
Now I will rouse their jealousy through people who are not even a people;
I will provoke their anger through the foolish Gentiles.

 

 

  • We stumble because we do not obey [we ignore or disobey God and the right way of living]

 

However those who do not trust in Jesus who do not follow the true way to eternal life, will stumble.

 

This is because we do not

1 Peter 2

They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them.

 

That fate is judgment.

 

The only answer to judgment is Jesus the rock the cornerstone because He is ‘ the Way the Truth and the Life’.

 

 

  • Lets put this together

 

To reach God many think they need to build up on their own endeavors just like those who built the tower of Babel.

However If Jesus is the Way the Truth and the Life He is the cornerstone of our lives.

The cornerstone of the temple.

We are the temple of God, His priests.

So we need to fit our lives onto the corner stone.

The temple is built upon Christ.

We the building blocks of the temple, Gods priests, we come in many different sizes and shapes but we all fit together around the corner stone.

 

Building Gods temple, His people on and around the cornerstone of Christ, Gods word.

 

Many stumble because they are trying to build their lives on their own foundation rather than the cornerstone the foundation God supplied.

They want to reach God their way, under their own way of living, under their own rules.

 

Jesus has not left this open to us.

“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

 

Only by building our lives on the cornerstone can we know the way

Only by accepting the truth that a building has strength when build around the cornerstone can we have Live.

A building fails unless built on a cornerstone.

So instead of God being up high and us trying to reach Him, He is at the bottom holding us all together.

He is the Rock which binds us together.

 

Lets Pray.

 

 

6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

7 If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is.[c] From now on, you do know him and have seen him!”

 

 

 

 

 

Notice Sheet piece 

 “I am the way, the truth, and the life”

 

‘The New Testament does not say, “You shall know the rules, and by them you shall be bound”, but “You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free”.’ [1]

Truth is under threat today. Post-modern culture is suspicious of claims to absolute truth. Just look at some recent elections and how Fake News is rife. Truth is what feels right to me – truth is what I make it! Subjective approaches to truth are not new, however. In Jesus’ day, religious leaders read Scripture diligently for truth yet rejected Jesus outright. To their minds a blasphemous Sabbath-breaker could not possibly be the Son of God. Truth was what they made it. Ironically, they were more likely to accept self-styled messiahs who fitted in with their thinking.

This week we are looking at Jesus Claim “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. ” [2] To many that is not only a bold statement but one which ignores all other options. Jesus goes on to say that He and God are one, another very bold statement. Both are at the centre of Christian belief, One God Father, Son and Spirit. Not three gods or multiple gods of which Jesus is one, but only one God which Jesus is. Jesus is God come down as man to show us God, how He thinks, how He acts and what His nature is. ” Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father!” [3]. If this is true then we have to respond to it in some way. How do you respond to this statement from Jesus?

 

[1] John Baillie, in Living Quotations for Christians, Hodder, 1974

[2] John 14:6

[3] John 14:9b

 

 

 

 

John 14.1-14

Jesus, the Way to the Father

14 “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. 2 There is more than enough room in my Father’s home.[a] If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?[b] 3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.”

5 “No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”

6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me. 7 If you had really known me, you would know who my Father is.[c] From now on, you do know him and have seen him!”

8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.”

9 Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father! So why are you asking me to show him to you? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words I speak are not my own, but my Father who lives in me does his work through me. 11 Just believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me. Or at least believe because of the work you have seen me do.

12 “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father. 13 You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father. 14 Yes, ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it!

 

 

1 Peter 2:2-10

2 Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment,3 now that you have had a taste of the Lord’s kindness.

Living Stones for God’s House

4 You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple. He was rejected by people, but he was chosen by God for great honor.

5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests.[a] Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God. 6 As the Scriptures say,

“I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem,[b]
chosen for great honor,
and anyone who trusts in him
will never be disgraced.”[c]

7 Yes, you who trust him recognize the honor God has given him.[d] But for those who reject him,

“The stone that the builders rejected
has now become the cornerstone.”[e]

8 And,

“He is the stone that makes people stumble,
the rock that makes them fall.”[f]

They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them.

9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests,[g] a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.

10 “Once you had no identity as a people;
now you are God’s people.
Once you received no mercy;
now you have received God’s mercy.”

 

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