Summary: Jesus is the way, truth and LIFE. What is involved in that life and how we incorporate it are significant.
1. Benjamin Franklin’s List: In his autobiography, Benjamin Franklin listed the names of thirteen virtues to ultimately achieve a perfectly moral bearing in his life. He was obsessed with obtaining perfection at this time of his life. Virtues such as temperance, silence, order, frugality, sincerity, justice, moderation and humility, in his words “to imitate Jesus and Socrates in his life.” He kept a daily journal to chart those times when he fell short and those times when he felt he achieved perfection – but he never did, none of us ever can.
2. There is only One who has achieved a life of perfection and without sin – Jesus, and he has earned the right to instruct us in the true way of life by the way in which he lived;
3. John 14.6
4. LIFE is a significant topic for John – mentioned 43 times in John; 12 times in epistles of John and 18 times in the Revelation – 77 times – a few passages:
• John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
• John 5.21 For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will.
• John 5.26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself.
• John 6.68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life,
• John 15.13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.
I. How to Perceive Life
A. Includes More Than the Material
The King and the Jester
Brent Hutsell in SermonCentral.com Illustrations relates a tale about a king who had all his world could afford. The thing he loved most, however, was to laugh.
Once while being entertained a jester came along wishing to join in the festival of activities and also wishing to perform for him. His opportunity came and he put the best comical show together he had ever done and the king had never laughed so hard.
After the activity was over, the king wanted to hire the man as his personal jester. Once hired the king in humor handed him a small stick and said, “You are the most foolish man alive. When you find someone more foolish than you, then you give them this stick.”
After many years had passed the king lay sick on his death bed, ready to go at any moment. He called for his jester, for he wanted to laugh one more time before he died.
When the jester was through he asked to speak to the king privately. Once alone with the king the jester asked, “King, where are you going?” The king responded, “On a far journey.” The jester then asked, “And how do you plan to get there?” Again the king responded, “I don’t know.”
The jester pulled the stick from his back pocket and handed it to the king. The king was stunned and asked why he had given him the stick. The jester replied, “King, today I have found a more foolish man than I. For you see, I only trifled with the things of life, but you have trifled with the things of eternity!”
A Parable to consider:
13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.” 14 But he said to him, “Man, who made me a judge or arbitrator over you?” 15 And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” 16 And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, 17 and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ 18 And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21 So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.” Luke 12.13-21
1. Creation included physical and the breath/spirit of life
2. No Spirit, no life – James 2.26
3. Reconciliation/reunion with God is life (death is separation as in Garden)
B. Involves the Eternal
1. Through Jesus – John 14.6, 19 (19Yet a little while and the world will see me no more, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live.)