Life rarely behaves as we want it to behave or as we expect it to behave. The older we get the longer the list of questions in our life on why things have occurred the way they have. Sometimes we face frustration, even anger, when things happen the way they do. Sometimes we are just afraid.
When times come when we do not know the right questions to ask, as well as the answers, we have to do what the disciples did in John 14. First, they had troubled hearts. Here is a law of life: even when we are close to the Lord Jesus, our hearts can be troubled from time to time. Get used to it.
The only answer for a troubled heart is for us to do what the disciples did: listen to the Lord Jesus teach. Today, we do it by reading our Bible and by listening to Bible preaching. After a bit we are then able to begin to ask questions.
Questions are good. God does not mind our asking Him questions. Even dumb questions are good. The Lord Jesus even used these types of questions to teach eternal truth. When we ask the Lord Jesus questions, there are no dumb questions.
The question that is asked is not about heaven. The Lord Jesus told them about heaven in the previous verses. The question is, rather, how to get to heaven. And an even greater principle is included here. Even though we know we will eventually get to heaven, the way, or path, that we are to follow sometimes seems to lead us in directions that are not heavenward. Because of the pain, or loneliness, or frustrations, or a myriad of other emotions, we can begin to understand why the path He has chosen for us is so uncomfortable.
I. WE CAN ASK THE LORD JESUS TO HELP US, vs. 5.
A. So Often We Don’t Know Why; We Just Don’t Know – Period!
1. Thomas’ question is the honest mark of a disciple.
2. Thomas does not make any demands.
3. Thomas asks with a sense of humility.
4. Thomas admits his ignorance.
NOTE: That’s an astonishing thing to do in the midst of this bunch who were desirous to have the “chief seat.” Without such humility and honesty real discipleship is impossible.
Thomas’ question, “Lord, we know not whither Thou goest; and how can we know the way?”(John 14:4,5), evoked the Lord Jesus’ revelation that He was speaking not about knowing direction or a location but about knowing a person: “Jesus saith unto him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6).
NOTE: The marks of someone who is not a disciple.
a. They do not exhibit humility.
b. They do not ask honest questions.
B. We Need The Right Kind Of Knowledge.
1. There are things to discover in our spiritual life.
2. We must examine how God works in our lives.
3. We must pay attention to God’s dealings with us.
C. How Can We Know The Way?
a. By what means?
b. In what way?
a. Greek – dunamai.
b. Be able to do something.
c. Have power.
d. To be capable.
a. A course of conduct.
b. A journey.
c. A traveled road.
II. WE CAN HAVE CONFIDENCE IN THE LORD JESUS, vs. 6.
A. The Lord Jesus Responds By Talking About Himself.
NOTE: This is a rare occurrence. Normally, the Lord Jesus talked in the third person, e.g., The Son of man, etc.
a. Greek – ego
c. No question, I
2. In this one statement, the Lord Jesus sums up His divine nature.
NOTE: The Lord Jesus has called Himself:
1. The Living Water (John 4:10).
2. The Door (John 10:7).
3. The Good Shepherd (John 10:11).
4. The Resurrection (John 11:25
5. The Life (John 11:25).
B. The Lord Jesus Is The Way:
NOTE: Over 600 times the Bible talks about “way.”
1. “Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come” (John 8:21).
2. “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).
3. “And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem” (Acts 9:2).
4. “The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the Most High God, which show unto us the way of salvation” (Acts 16:17).
5. “And the same time there arose no small stir about that way” (Acts 19:23).
6. “And the way of peace have they not known” (Romans 3:17).
C. The Lord Jesus Is The Truth:
2. Free from pretense, falsehood, deceit.
4. That which is true in any matter under consideration.
5. The utter dependability of the Lord Jesus.
When we go to the doctor, we want a prescription for exactly what we will need in order to get well. We would be quite startled if the doctor said, “These pills ought to cure you if you’re sincere. After all, we believe in health, don’t we?” Or would we trust ourselves to a surgeon who had received no specialized training but was simply a really good person who meant well? Of course not! We know that truth is narrow. We will trust our life only to someone who knows exactly what he or she is doing.
D. The Lord Jesus Is The Life:
1. A Contrast:
a. The Lord Jesus is not a second Moses who wants to show the way.
b. The Lord Jesus is not a second Elijah who wants to show the truth.
c. The Lord Jesus is the life.
NOTE: Living without God’s plan for our life is like sewing with a needle but with no thread, or writing one’s biography with a pen empty of ink.
2. A Life:
a. Mere physical existence matters little.
b. The only life worthy of the name is that which the Lord Jesus brings.
NOTE: The Lord Jesus is the:
a. Way to God;
b. Truth of God;
c. Life of God.
NOTE: In Greek there is a definite article before each word setting them off as absolutes.
a. The Way;
b. The Truth;
c. The Life.
NOTE: The opposites:
a. The Way vs. the broad way;
b. The Truth vs. ignorance;
c. Life vs. death.
E. The Lord Jesus Is The Only Way For Us To Come To The Father.
a. Action or motion from one place to another.
Truth is very narrow. If we were hiking in the forest and came to a wide river, and we learned that there is one bridge down the river a mile or two away, we wouldn’t stomp in disgust and moan about how that was such a narrow way to think and that the bridge should be right there, where we were.
Instead, let us be thankful that there was a bridge, we would go to it and cross over it.
b. Make one’s appearance.
c. Become known.
NOTE: And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (Matthew 7:23).
3. By – Through.
a. If God has no avenue of communication with us apart from His Word (Incarnate and written), we have no avenue of approach to God apart from the One who became flesh for us.
b. Some say, “How exclusive!”
1. No, “How inclusive!”
2. God has provided Himself a Lamb!
We all need to follow the Lord Jesus. For He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6).
Without the way, there is no going; without the truth, there is no knowing; without the life, there is no living. I AM the way, which all of us must follow; I AM the truth, which all of us must believe; I AM the life for which all of us must hope.
The Lord Jesus is the inviolable way; the infallible truth; the never-ending life. The Lord Jesus is the straightest way; the sovereign truth; life that is true, life that is blessed, and the life uncreated. If we shall remain in His way, we shall know the truth, and the truth shall make us free (John 8:32).
III. WE CAN KNOW THE GREATEST LOVER OF OUR SOUL, vs. 7.
A. The Lord Jesus now moves the emphasis from going to knowing the Father.
1. He moves from the future tense to the present tense.
2. God’s presence here and now.
B. If we have known the Lord Jesus (Salvation):
1. We will become acquainted with Him.
2. We will come to know Him.
3. We will perceive Him.
4. We will understand Him.
1. At this very time on.
2. Just now beginning.
3. This moment on.
D. We Know And We See The Father:
1. Two ways:
a. Now by knowing Jesus.
b. Now by seeing Jesus.
NOTE: When someone properly explains something to us we say, “I see.”
2. We become acquainted with Him by experience.
c. See with the mind;
d. Take heed; stare at.