Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.” (John 14:6)
My oldest daughter is like many other teenagers. She has to be constantly busy. If she has a little downtime in her schedule, she starts to feel edgy and quickly begins texting friends to see if they want to get together. She reminds me of a dog chasing its tail (and I tell her so).
It became clear to me a few years ago that my daughter’s need for busy-ness isn’t completely due to adolescence. She has not yet come to know Jesus as He truly is… “the way, the truth—and especially, the life.” In fact, she has admitted to me at times that she’s downright unhappy. That’s pretty clear.
She’s like a lot of people in this world. They keep churning and churning, trying to find happiness. They run in circles, chasing their tails, because if nothing else, the activity keeps them from feeling the pain and the darkness deep down inside.
I recently saw an interview on TV of a well-known comedienne, and she was asked about her cosmetic surgery. In a joking kind of way, she said that she thought it would make her happy, then admitted that it didn’t.
When Jesus says, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life…” it seems that the “life” part of His statement is often overlooked. As Christians, we think of that statement as relating to heaven, i.e., Jesus is the way to heaven. But equally important, Jesus is the “life” here on earth. He is what gives us the thrill of living right now.
The word “life” in John 14:6 is translated from the Greek word, “Zoe,” which means, “the principle of life in the spirit and the soul. This is distinguished from Bios, physical life, livelihood, of which Zoe, is the nobler word, expressing all of the highest and best which Christ is and which He gives to the saints. The highest blessedness of the creature.” (From the Keyword Study Bible, Lexical Aids to the New Testament.)
The life that Christ gives us is life in our spirit and in our souls. He gives us a part of Himself, which, when the apostles tried to describe it, was like having light within us. Remember this scripture?
In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. (John 1:4-5)
The word “darkness” is translated from the Greek word “Skotia.” My Keyword Study Bible says it has “the prevailing associated idea of unhappiness or ruin.” And interestingly, “’Skotia’ is not a figurative term for sin, but the consequences of sin.”
So when John said that Jesus was the light that shines in the darkness, he meant our internal darkness, the result of our sin. Just as we need light in our world to go about our lives and our daily business, in the same way, we need Jesus’ life and light within us to function as happy, healthy creatures. When we don’t have it, we may be standing outside at high noon on a cloudless day, and we’ll feel like we’re groping through darkness trying to turn on the light.
I know the Lord has His hand on my daughter and eventually, she will invite the “life and the light of men” inside. I pray for her daily. I’d appreciate your prayers as well.