His Way or The Highway
by Richard Barnes
In John 14:6, Jesus is quoted as saying “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” Much has been written about what Jesus meant by the words way, truth, and life. In the context of his discussion with his disciples, it is plain what he meant by these words.
What is sometimes downplayed is Jesus using the pronoun “I.” Collins English Dictionary says this pronoun is a word that you use to refer to someone or something when you do not need to use a noun, often because the person or thing has been mentioned earlier. “I” clearly refers to Jesus as he is the one being quoted in this passage. By nature of the pronoun, it excludes anyone else. This is further illustrated by Jesusʼ next statement to complete verse 6. “No one comes to the Father except through me.” These words are a condensed commentary on what he said in the previous sentence and illustrates that Jesus is the one and only entity to access the Father and salvation.
Also, the definite article “the” refers to the specific noun which follows and is used three times prior to the nouns way, truth, and life. This sentence structure indicates according to the Cambridge Dictionary that there is no other way, no other truth and no other life that may be attained through Jesus. This would be entirely different if the indefinite article “a” had been used by Jesus before the nouns way, truth and life. We take the words of Jesus without question. So why is this elementary concept so important?
Most people in the world today believe that Jesus is not the way to attain salvation or gain access to God. Approximately 70% of the worldʼs population do not believe the words of Jesus. 25% of the worldʼs population are Muslim, 15% are Hindu, 10% are Buddhist, Secular/Agnostic/Atheist comprise 15%, and other religions denying Christ total 5%. We, as believers in Jesus Christ and His teachings, are in the minority.
Luke said it this way in Acts 4:12. “And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Paul explained it like this in his letter to the Philipian church in chapter 2 and verse 9. “Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
We may think that we will never have a conversation with a disbeliever but in our day and time, that possibility becomes greater with each passing day. Let us pray that we will prepare ourself to defend Jesus and convict those who would deny the authenticity of our Lord and His teachings.