About Jesus - Steve Sweetman
The Way (ch. 14:4-14)
verse 5 Thomas responds to Jesus by telling Him that they donít even
know where He is going so how could they ever know how to get there.
That makes sense. If
one doesnít know where to go, how can one know how to get there?
6 is one real well known verse. I'm
sure many Christians have memorized this in Sunday school.
Jesus had to explain to them what He was talking about.
Jesus says the following. "I
am the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except
through me." This
statement by Jesus answers the questions where He is going and how to get
is Jesus going? He is going to
the Father. How do you get
there? You go through Jesus.
I am the way to the Father Jesus says.
We need to note that Jesus is the only way to the Father, not a way
to God the Father. It's a sad
fact, that even in Evangelical circles today that many Christians believe
that there are several ways to God.
is not only the way to the Father, but He is truth and He is life.
All truth comes from Jesus, and all that comes from Jesus is true.
Jesus is the central truth of the universe.
If anything is true, it is true because of Jesus.
The mathematical equation two plus two equals four is true.
It is true because Jesus, long before His incarnation invented
mathematical principles. Remember,
"all things were made by Him," so John tells us in chapter one.
thing to note here about the word "truth" is the in Old
Testament Jewish culture truth was connected with faithfulness.
So, in this Jewish context, Jesus is saying that the true reality
of a thing is because of Jesus and thus His truth can be faithfully
is also life. All the life in
the universe exists because of Jesus the Word, as seen in John 1:1 to 5.
ďIn the beginning was the Word Ö and all things were made by
Him." All life, whether
plant, animal, or human life exist because of Jesus.
You might want to read Hebrews 1:1 to 5 that relates to this issue.
aspect to the word "life" here is the abundant life Jesus spoke
about back in John 10:10. A
real life that satisfies in every way is a life in union with Jesus.
are strong words from the mouth of Jesus.
These are pretty dramatic claims that He makes.
If Jesus is indeed who He says He is here, then these claims must
be taken seriously. Even if
one has doubts about Jesus, He more than any other person has made an
impact on human history. This
is undeniable. Therefore, the
doubter should give Jesusí claims serious thought.
is obvious that I have given Jesus serious thought.
It is for this reason that I say that once knowing that Jesus is
the universal truth, I have no logical conclusion but to hand my life over
to Him in a trusting relationship.
the specific location where Jesus says He is going here in verse 6.
It's not Heaven.
He is going to His Father.
You might not think this is a big deal but it is.
Throughout the book of John we see that one of the main points
Jesus wants us to know concerns His relationship with His Father.
Yes, Jesus is going to Heaven, but more importantly He is returning
to His Father.
It's all about relationship with His Father, not all of the other
things found in Heaven.
The same should be true with us.
So many Christians are looking for their mansion in Heaven, but
first and foremost they should be looking to be restored to their God.
It's all about Him.
verse 7 Jesus says that "if you really knew me you would know my
Father also." The word
"if" makes this a conditional statement.
Jesus is really saying that these men, at least not yet, don't know
Jesus as they should, or, as they will.
If they really did know Jesus, in the true Biblical sense, they
would know both Him and His Father.
word "know" in Old Testament context means more than mental
acknowledgement. It is an intimate knowing, as a husband and wife know
each other. Christianity is
not a matter of embracing theological issues.
It's a matter of knowing the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.
then says "from now on you do know Him and have seen Him."
As I have said many times before in this commentary, the word
"now" doesn't always mean "now in this precise moment.
This is true here. It
is clear from the text itself that the disciples were still not clued into
what Jesus was saying. It was
not until the Holy Spirit came into their lives in Acts 2 where the word
"now" becomes real. So,
in this case, "now" is in reference to the Day of Pentecost.
Remember, Jesus often speaks from an eternal perspective because He
is eternal. Also, whatever
Jesus says is about to happen, even if it takes a while, you can count on
it happening. It is as good as
are some textual difficulties with this sentence.
There are two varying versions of this verse in older manuscripts.
Jesus could have been saying "you havenít really known me,
so you havenít known the Father, but you will from here on out."
Or, He could have been saying "youíve really known me, and
therefore you know the Father, even though youíre not so sure, but from
this time out, there will be know doubt."
I tend towards the first version.
verse 8 Philip asks Jesus to just show them the Father.
Well, Jesus canít do that. He
cannot make God magically appear before these eleven men.
They could not live and see God, but, by looking at Jesus, they see
the reflection of God. This is
what Jesus was trying to tell these men, and Philipís question suggests
that they didnít understand.
verse 9 Jesus responds by asking Phillip, "donít you know meÖ
" With a touch of
frustration Jesus tells Philip and the others that they should have seen
the Father because they have seen Him.
Over and over again Jesus has told these men that if you see me,
you see the Father, or, if you know me, you know the Father.
Jesus asks Philip, "how can you say show us the Father" He might
well have uttered these words with a hint of frustration because this has
been a topic of ongoing conversation.
Jesus asks, "donít you believe that I am in the Father and the
Father is in me?" Father
and Son are intertwined into a oneness that is hard for us to understand
and that certainly includes Philip.
in verse 10, Jesus says that the words He speaks are not His own but they
belong to the Father "who lives inside" of Jesus.
Jesus is saying that God the Father actually lives inside Him, as
we say the Holy Spirit lives inside of us.
So, if you take all that Jesus says about His Father, you see that
the Father lives inside of Jesus but also lives outside of Jesus.
This is where our doctrine of the Trinity comes into play.
Jesus and the Father are one, yet they are separate.
verse 11 Jesus tells the
Jesus is dealing with here is the crux of our faith.
He is saying that He is divine, that He is in fact God.
This is fundamental to our Christian belief system.
We must believe that Jesus is God.
No other world religion believes this.
For this reason, we must not worship with any other religious
peoples, although sad to say, many Christians are worshipping with other
religious people these days.
12 has always raised questions over the years.
It says that "anyone who has faith in me will do as I have
been doing. He will do
even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father."
First of all, we look at the obvious.
Jesus says that we will do the things, which many take to be
miracles, and even greater things, than He because He is going to the
Father. The future tense of
doing these things along with the point that He is going to His Father
tells me that Jesus had Pentecost in mind.
These things would take place in the lives of disciples after
Greek word "ergon" is translated as "things' in this verse.
Other translations, like the HCSB translate this Greek word more
correctly as "works. Jesus
isn't specifically talking about miracles here.
He is talking about doing work for the Lord.
Over the centuries Christians have done greater works of service
than Jesus, that is, in one sense of the word.
We haven't died on the cross for the salvation of mankind, but,
we've travelled the world in spreading the gospel.
Jesus did not travel all that far in a geographical sense, but
Peter, John, Paul, and others did. These
are greater works.
not discounting that miracles are not included in doing the work of the
Lord. Many miraculous things
have been in the name of Jesus by Christians.
In Acts 3 Peter and John heal a crippled man in the name of Jesus,
something that Jesus Himself would have done.
see in this verse that Jesus says that anyone who believes will do these
works. Of course believes
means trusts. So, one who only
mentally believes in the existence of Jesus will not do these works.
Also, Jesus was not just speaking of the Eleven who heard these
words. He was speaking to
anyone who truly trusted his life to Him.
That would include you and I who have handed our lives over to
section ends in verses 13 and 14 by Jesus saying that anyone can ask for
anything in His name and He would fulfill his request.
What does this mean? It
certainly does not mean that we have a blank check and can expect Jesus to
do whatever we want Him to do. He
does not respond at the snap of our fingers.
Just because we name and claim something doesnít mean Jesus needs
to come up with our demand.
key is asking in Jesus name. His
name means that we are representatives of Jesus.
We bare and represent His good name to the world around us.
We work for Him. Whatever
we need in order to carry out Jesusí wishes as we represent Him, He will
give us. Anything beyond
this Jesus is not obligated to give us.
He may or He may not give us our list of wishes and desires.
That is His prerogative. We
must not name, claim, or demand our wish list from Jesus as Hyper Faith
and Prosperity Teaching asserts.