Brookwood Church - Love God, Love People

Perspective



Perspective

Perry Duggar |

Jesus gives a spiritual perspective on all things by clarifying His identity as "the Way, the Truth, and the Life."








  1. Introduction: We continue our series, “Who is Jesus?”
  2. Jesus identifies Himself in the book of John using metaphors or word pictures.
  3. He introduces Himself 7 times with the sacred personal name of God, “I am,” before utilizing an image which reveals an aspect of His nature, personhood or work.
  4. The subject of today’s message, titled Perspective, is actually three images.
  5. Theme verse: John 14:6a (NLT)—Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.…”

 

  1. Background (John 14:1-6a)
  2. John chapters 13-16 focuses on Jesus’ words and actions with His disciples in the upper room where they would share the Passover meal before His arrest, trial and crucifixion.
  3. The passage, referred to as the Farewell Discourse (13:31 to 16:33), was given by Jesus to prepare His disciples for His departure.
  4. It would soon be their privilege and responsibility to carry on His work after He returned to heaven 40 days after His resurrection. (Acts 1:3)
  5. John 14:1-6a (NLT)—"Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in Me. There is more than enough room in My Father’s home. [speaking of heaven] If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with Me where I am. And you know the way to where I am going.”

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

6a Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. …”

  1. Jesus had predicted His death following His triumphant entry into Jerusalem for Passover, but He did so in a veiled way, especially to people who imagined Him as their Messiah-king from God, so they couldn’t conceive that He was soon going to die. (12:23-24,27,35-36; 13:31-33).
  2. Even if they understood that Jesus was going to die, they had no understanding about how to follow Him through death. (13:36)
  3. Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life provided Thomas, the disciples, and us, with a clearer understanding of Jesus’ identity, purpose and plan.
  4. This 3-fold statement provides a spiritual perspective (viewpoint) on this world; in other words, a Christian world view, which is seeing all things through the prism of faith.

 

  1. A spiritual perspective includes…

 

  1. #1 - Access to God through the way. (John 14:6a; C/R: Proverbs 14:12; John 3:36; 10:7-9; Acts 4:12; 1 Timothy 2:5-6)
  2. John 14:6 (NLT)—Jesus told him, “I am the way… No one can come to the Father except through Me.” [Jesus’ followers were called the Way at Acts 9:2; 19:9; 19:23; 22:4; 24:14,22.]
  3. Thomas was confused and likely overwhelmed since he had just heard that Jesus was departing and that He would be betrayed by one of them. (13:21)
  4. Thomas asked for directions, but Jesus answered with, not only specific instructions for him, but also a definitive statement that He alone provided access to God.
  5. What Jesus said was startling because, among Jews, there were several different groups who claimed the rightful way to reach God: Pharisees, Sadducees, Zealots and Essenes.
  6. In addition, there were many different religions: the Canaanites who preceded the Jews in the land had gods and idols, as did all of Israel’s neighboring nations, the Romans had a panoply of gods, as well as worship of the Emperor.
  7. Others sought guidance through mystery cults, astrology and even Greek philosophy.
  8. Jesus declared that the Father is real and He is the exclusive, singular, way to Him!
  9. This would have sounded narrow, exclusive, which would have offended many.
  10. Remember that He referred to Himself as the gate for the sheep, and that the others were thieves and robbers. (John 10:7-9)
  11. People think they innately know the way to God, believing that each person can have his/her own path; they are offended if someone says that they are incorrect.
  12. [Screen] Proverbs 14:12 (NLT)—There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death. (Not only physical death, but also separation from God.)
  13. Many people think that all of the world’s religions lead to the same god who is merely called by different names, but they don’t.
  14. The way of salvation is a small path entered through a narrow gate, and the Bible says that few find it. (Matt.7:13-14)
  15. Jesus said at [screen] John 3:36 (NLT)—“And anyone who believes in God’s Son has eternal life. Anyone who doesn’t obey the Son will never experience eternal life but remains under God’s angry judgment.”
  16. [Screen] Acts 4:12 (NLT)—“There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” [1 Timothy 2:5-6]
  17. There is only one way to the Father—through His Son, specifically by trusting in the sacrifice of Jesus for the forgiveness of our sins!
  18. APP.: Do you believe there is only one way to the Father? Have you taken that path?

 

A spiritual perspective includes…

  1. #2 - Accepting Jesus’ word as the truth. (John 14:6-7,15-17; C/R: Matthew 11:27; John 8:31-32; 16:13-15; 18:37)
  2. John 14:6-7 (NLT)—Jesus told him, “I am… the truth. … If you had really known Me, you would know who My Father is. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him!”
  3. Jesus spoke the absolute truth about the identity, nature, character, plan and purpose of the Father.
  4. We can’t know God unless He reveals Himself to us in a way we can comprehend.
  5. [Screen] Matthew 11:27 (NLT)—“My Father has entrusted everything to Me. No one truly knows the Son except the Father, and no one truly knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.”
  6. God is Who He reveals Himself to be, not Who we wish or prefer or suppose Him to be.
  7. God is who He says He is and who He shows He is through His Son Jesus.
  8. Jesus personalized the Father; He truthfully, faithfully and fully disclosed the Father.
  9. That is one reason I attempt to highlight Jesus’ words in the Bible.
  10. Our culture wants to relegate Jesus to the religious function of forgiveness—and to make His Words a suggestion for us to consider, not the truthful commands of the Father.
  11. Jesus’ truth extends to everything He addresses; He determines what is right and wrong, moral and immoral, righteous and unrighteous.
  12. [Screen] John 8:31–32 (NLT)—31 Jesus said to the people who believed in Him, “You are truly My disciples if you remain faithful to My teachings. 32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” [John 18:37]
  13. There is only freedom within restraint; we are free to obey Christ and experience the peace and security He provides.
  14. Without instructions or directions from God, we have no concept of right or wrong according to God, so we are guided by personal preferences or even impulses.
  15. When our own opinions become most important to us, we have become our own gods.
  16. When Jesus left earth though the ascension, He didn’t leave us without direction.
  17. He was replaced with the Holy Spirit, which increased the immediacy and intimacy of our insight into truth.
  18. [Screen] John 14:15–17 (NLT)—15 “If you love Me, obey My commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Advocate [Or Comforter, or Encourager, or Counselor], who will never leave you. 17 He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive Him, because it isn’t looking for Him and doesn’t recognize Him. But you know Him, because He lives with you now and later will be in you.” [Spirit of truth: John 15:26; 16:13-15]
  19. APP.: Are Jesus’ words from the Bible and the Spirit truth to us? Do we obey them?

 

A spiritual perspective includes…

  1. #3 - Attesting that Jesus offers eternal life. (John 14:6-11; C/R: John 5:26; 6:63; 10:28-30; 12:44-45)
  2. John 14:6a,8-11 (NLT)—Jesus told him, “I am… the life. …”

Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” [He apparently wanted some appearance of the Father.]

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.” [John 12:44-45; Col.1:15,19;2:9; Heb.1:3]

  1. The life that Jesus lived, and displayed, was a totally God-filled, Spirit-led, human life.
  2. Jesus not only demonstrated eternal life in human form, He also offers it to us.
  3. [Screen] John 5:26 (NLT)—“The Father has life in Himself, and He has granted that same life-giving power to His Son.” [John 10:28-30]
  4. Jesus imparted physical life to all things creatively (John.1:3; 1 Cor.8:6; Col.1:16; Heb.1:2), and through the Holy Spirit, He imparts eternal life (Jn.1:4) to all who believe through being born again.
  5. The unending, eternal, life that He offers to us is to be filled and led by the Spirit of God. (Jn.6:63)
  6. Jesus desires for people to recognize the distinct differences between ordinary physical life and eternal spiritual life when He says, I am…the life, so they will compare their lives with His.
  7. Jesus showed His desire for people to understand the nature of eternal life by referring to Himself as the bread of life that satisfies hunger eternally (Jn.6:32-35) and the resurrection and the life which enables a person will live after dying. (Jn.11:25-26)
  8. I think Jesus was emphasizing for us the distinct differences between physical life resulting from birth and life infused by the Holy Spirit following rebirth.
  9. APP.: Have you received eternal life? How does it differ from your physical life?
  10. Jesus is the Way who leads us to the Father, He’s the Truth who tells us what is real; He’s the Life who shows us how to live.
  11. App.: Do you know Him? If not, would you like to?
  • Counselors at front and in Care Connection room
  • Prayer next week, Auditorium, 8:15 AM
  • Memory verse: Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6 (NLT)
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