Who is Jesus Christ? Why is he so important?
Jesus is the Son of God. He came to earth, born of the virgin Mary who was with child by the Holy Spirit, so that we, all people through all of time, may be saved from our sins and an eternity of separation from God. It can be very difficult to comprehend the reality of Jesus, what he stood for, who he was and still is, and what he did through his life and ultimately through his sacrifice and resurrection.
'And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going." Thomas said to him, "Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him." ' John 14:3-7
Jesus is the way…
When Jesus came to be with mankind on earth, he became the gateway to a relationship with God. He changed the way we are called to worship, live, love, and be overall. Through Jesus’ teachings within the gospels we find that he is the Way to the Father. He tells us that through loving him we are loved by God. By following his teachings and commands we show our love and faithfulness to him, and through that faith and obedience we get to have a relationship with God, and a relationship with God is a blessing beyond measure.
'Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him." ' John 14:21
Jesus is not only the way to God, but the way to safety as our Good Shepherd. The job of a shepherd is to keep the flock safe and healthy. Sheep are silly, stubborn animals, and they rely heavily on their shepherd to take care of them. When they fall over, they need the help of the shepherd to get back up. When they are filthy, dirty, and hungry they rely on the shepherd to clean and heal them, and lead them to green pastures to be nourished and fed. When a sheep wanders off, the shepherd chases after them to save them from being eaten by wolves. When a shepherd calls to his sheep, the sheep know his voice, trust it, and follow it. Sheep need their shepherd in order to survive. Life is safer when they stay with their shepherd.
There was a sheep who had gotten lost and managed to survive on its own, but it had become so overgrown with wool its life was at risk. Fortunately, the sheep was found in time and a shearer was able to save his life (story here). We are sheep. We collect so much dirt, gunk, sin, and all this painful baggage that weighs us down, suffocating us. Then when we find Jesus, and we allow him to take us in as a good shepherd does, he shears off the baggage, cleans out the darkness in our hearts, heals our wounds, and frees us from the suffocation of sin. Through Jesus, we find a new, fresh life source and the safety of a good shepherd who loves his flock.
'I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. ' John 10:9-11
Jesus is the Truth…
Jesus doesn’t just speak truth, he is truth personified, and the source of all truth.
“and all the ways that wickedness deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie, and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.” 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12
I love how ActiveChristianity addresses Jesus as the truth, “Our attitude toward the truth determines the outcome of our lives. If we don’t love the truth, if we resist it, we resist salvation. But if we do love the truth then we embrace salvation and we receive the reward: the crown of life.”
Jesus is the truth, so everything He teaches is truth. When we live by the truth, loving the truth, we live by the commands Jesus gives because we know they are true and they open us up to a relationship with God which gives us new life. Loving and believing the truth leads to life and resisting the truth leads to destruction.
"If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." ' John 8:31-32
Jesus is the Life...
Circling back to John 10:10-11, I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep, Jesus is the key to eternal life because he protected us with his life when he died on the cross and rose again 3 days later. When we love and remain faithful to Jesus we are given the free gift of salvation. That salvation saves us from eternal separation from God. When we give our life to Jesus, our spirit is given new life. We are made new, refreshed, born again through the blood of Jesus.
In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace. Ephesians 1:7
When we are reborn in Christ, we are given the gift of eternal life. With Jesus, life here on earth is much more fulfilling, and we have Him to hold onto, lean on, follow, and protect and heal us along the way - but as Crosswalk puts it, “...this life is not the point.” Jesus lays down exactly how we are called to live here and is also the gateway to eternal life in Heaven. He came so that we may have a full, abundant life and be saved from eternal separation from God.
Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life. He is the Son of God, God in the flesh, our Saviour and Redeemer, our Good Shepherd, and is everything we need and more. Loving Jesus and building a foundation with Him as the cornerstone is essential to a fulfilling life here, eternal life in Heaven, and a relationship with God.