Summary: Jesus tells us we can trust in His presence, trust in His promises and trust in His path.
I AM THE WAY AND THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE
Chuck Swindoll tells this story about R.D. Jones. It had to do with a typographical error in the classified section of a small-town newspaper and the subsequent disastrous attempts to correct it. Things went from bad to worse to horrible. Monday: FOR SALE – R.D. Jones has one sewing machine for sale. Phone 948-0707 after 7 p.m. and ask for Mrs. Kelly who lives with him cheap. Tuesday: NOTICE – We regret having erred in R.D. Jones’ ad yesterday. It should have read: One sewing machine for sale. Cheap. Phone 949-0707 and ask for Mrs. Kelly who lives with him after 7 p.m. Wednesday: NOTICE – R.D. Jones has informed us that he has received several annoying telephone calls because of the error we made in his classified ad yesterday. His ad stands corrected as follows: FOR SALE – R.D. Jones has one sewing machine for sale. Cheap. Phone 949-0707 after 7 p.m. and ask for Mrs. Kelly who loves with him. Thursday: NOTICE – I, R.D. Jones have NO sewing machine for sale. I SMASHED IT! Don’t call 948-0707, as the telephone has been disconnected. I have not been carrying on with Mrs. Kelly. Until yesterday she was my housekeeper, but she quit.
When was the last time you had a really bad day? Today we are continuing in our series looking at the I Am statements of Jesus. We have looked at Jesus the Bread of Life, the one that satisfies our deepest hunger. Last week we talked about Jesus the Resurrection and the Life, the one that helps us in our fears. Today we turn to Jesus the Way and the Truth and the Life, the one who helps us to trust.
John 14:1 "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. 2 In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 4 You know the way to the place where I am going." 5 Thomas said to him, "Lord, we don't know where you are going, so how can we know the way ?" 6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him."
When was the last time your whole world just seemed to be falling apart? When it seemed that everything around you just came crashing down? That is the way the apostles are feeling as we come to this chapter. Their week had begun gloriously. Just before this Lazarus had been raised from the dead. Jesus had His triumphal entry into Jerusalem with people waving palm branches and shouting, "Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the King of Israel!" (John 12:13) Everything seemed to be going so well.
Even the Pharisees and the chief priests who had been plotting against Jesus had cried out in despair, "See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after Him!" (John 12:19)
However, Jesus had not come to establish an earthly kingdom. He repeatedly refused the crown. Disappointed in their dreams of a Jewish kingdom with Jesus as their miracle working king, the fickle crowd began to change. Soon the priests were once again seeking someone to betray Jesus into their hands. As the 14th chapter of John opens, we see Jesus and His apostles in the upper room where they have eaten the Passover meal together. Jesus knew exactly what the next few hours would bring.
He knew Judas would betray Him. He knew He would be arrested. He knew about the trials and the beatings. He knew He would die on the cross. In light of all of this He tried to prepare the apostles for what they were about to endure, so He begins to comfort them.
When times get tough and your heart is broken sometimes it is hard to trust again. A few weeks ago I went to Kuwait to help the church I used to pastor. When I left the church in 2009 it was growing and thriving. In the last few years it has gone through many trials. A long time pastor died of cancer. A new pastor took the church in a new direction. This past fall the church was forced to fire all 5 of it’s pastors. It is now less than half the size it was. The church has gone from a place of complete trust to almost complete distrust. It was for this reason that I went back to visit, to remind the church of it’s foundation and to remind it of it’s mission. Because I had served there for many years I had a degree of trust, but still there was so much fear.