This is week SIX in our seven-part devotion series, brought to you by Pastor Ricky Jacob, our Lutheran Indian Ministries Associate Pastor serving the Winnebago people of Nebraska.
When Moses spoke to God, he asked for God’s name. And God replied, “I am that which I am.”
This seven-part devotion series will reflect on Jesus’ “I am” statements in the Gospel.
This week’s “I am” statement is: I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
There appear to be various ways and paths to God, in this day in age.
There is the path of moralism. Many think that Christianity is all about moralism… wrong! Christianity is all about Jesus being the way back to God.
Others speculate that knowledge is the key to understanding God. The way of speculation often becomes, simply, another occasion for human pride, manifesting itself in an elitism that scorns ordinary people, or a private arrogance that shuts out the rest of the world. Is speculation the way to God? Wrong, again! Jesus is the truth. No speculating or human reason necessary.
Perhaps the most appealing mode of spirituality today is mysticism, attaining the ecstatic experience of becoming one with God. Such mysticism comes close to repeating the serpent’s primal temptation, “You will be like God!” Is mysticism the way back to God? Wrong, again! Jesus is the Life, everlasting life.
Dr. Gene Veith examines, in his book, The Spirituality of the Cross, each of these teachings. He goes on to write that in the New Testament, a single verse demolishes each brand of human spirituality – Romans 3:12 says:
There is no one righteous –not even one. [so much for moralism]
There is no one who understands. [so much for speculation]
There is no one who seeks God. [so much for mysticism]
There is an answer, though. The spiritual way back to God? Jesus has the answer, in fact, He is the answer. Jesus said:
"Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.” (John 14:1)
He goes on to say:
“I am the way," [so much for moralism], “and the truth,” [so much for speculation], “and the life” [so much for mysticism]. (John 14:6 ESV)
I close with these words:
We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. (1 John 5:20)