Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
NIV - 6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Community answers are sorted based on votes. The higher the vote, the further up an answer is.
If the gospels had been originally written in Latin, the answer to the posed question might be subject to debate, since Latin did not use articles (such as "a" or "the") in connection with nouns. However, in the Greek of the original text, each of Jesus' claims was prefaced with the definite article (that is, "the"), indicating that Jesus was claiming exclusivity with regard to each of the three statements. To me, this is similar to Jesus' saying that He had the authority to forgive sins (Matthew 9:1-8), which the Christian apologist C. S. Lewis regarded as one of the most definitive indications of both His claim to be God, as well as of the reality of His divinity. The statement in John 14:6 similarly makes claims that confront the hearer with a "liar, lunatic, legend, or Lord" choice about Jesus, with the sole possible conclusion (considered in light of the rest of the Biblical record) being that Jesus was both God in human flesh, as well as the only individual who has ever lived who could truly make such a statement..
Of the 29 Bible verses about access to God, 2 are relevant here: John 14:6: Jesus said to him [to Thomas], “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me." 1 Timothy 2:5: The apostle Paul said, "For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus." (italics added). Moreover, Jesus sternly warned His followers about those who would try to preach a different Christ (Mt 24:4-5). A bold Peter said in Acts 4:12, "Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is none other name under heaven, given among men, whereby we must be saved." I love these stanzas from 2 different hymns. 1. There is one Way, and only one, Out of our gloom, and sin, and care, To that far land where shines no sun Because the face of God is there. There is one Truth, the Truth of God, That Christ came down from Heav’n to show, One Life that His redeeming blood Has won for all His saints below. 2. If you would meet in Heaven Those that you miss today, The Blessèd One must lead you— He is the only way.
It is of utmost importance to rightly divide the word of truth (2 Tim 2:15), the gospel of our salvation (Eph 1:13) that was given to Paul, from the gospel given to biblical Israel (such as the book of John) when studying the bible. Jesus and the 12 apostles were for the lost sheep of the house of Israel, which was not you or I (Mat 10:5-6, Mat 15:24). During God's dispensation of grace (Eph 3:2) that we live in today, there is no difference in Jew nor Greek (Gal 3:28). Believers today are members of the church the body of Christ (Col 1:24). God now sees us in Christ, and not who we see when we look in the mirror! All of our sins were forgiven when Jesus died on the cross (Col 2:13, 2 Cor 5:19). This event happened whether someone believes it or not. Salvation occurs after hearing the gospel and at the moment of belief in it (Eph 1:13), the finished cross work of Jesus Christ (Rom 4:24-25), and nothing of ourselves (Eph 2:8). Salvation is a gift from God made possible by His grace (Rom 5:18), and our belief is acceptance of His free gift (Eph 2:8). Asking for forgiveness of sins would indicate that someone lacks faith and understanding in what Jesus Christ has already done on their behalf (1 Cor 15:3, Gal 2:20). Christ's death was sufficient to God for the forgiveness of our sins (2 Cor 5:19, 2 Cor 5:21, Rom 6:22). If there's something we're doing ourselves with the belief that it is to obtain or to maintain our salvation, then boasting becomes an issue (Eph 2:8-2:9). Look at it this way, if you're asking for forgiveness, who's doing the asking? That's right, you are, and you can't save yourself. Faith in what Christ did is the only thing that saves today (Gal 2:16). Asking for forgiveness of sin was a requirement under the law of Moses for biblical Israel, but we are no longer under the law, we're under God's grace (Rom 6:14). Praise God! You'll find doctrine for how we are to live today in the 13 epistles of Paul, Romans through Philemon (Rom 3:21). The sin barrier between God and man was removed by the death of Jesus Christ (Rom 6:22, 2 Cor 5:21). God can now work through us once we've removed ourselves from His path (Col 2:14, Philippians 1:6). We can focus on what we can do for Him once we've stopped focusing on ourselves and our iniquities (Rom 7:22-25). Our apostle Paul received the revelation of the fellowship of the mystery from Christ resurrected (Eph 3:9), which was before kept secret since the beginning of time (Rom 16:25). Had this mystery information been known prior to Christ's death, the princes of this world would not have crucified Jesus (1 Cor 2:8). Christ's message to Paul, our gospel, differs from that of the 12 apostles to biblical Israel (James 1:1), who did have to do works to prove their faith in 'times past' (Rom 11:6, James 2:24). We who are living during the dispensation of the grace of God (Eph 3:2) are to simply have faith in the finished cross work of Jesus Christ (Rom 3:28, 1 Cor 1:23). Works for salvation actually put us in debt with God as this shows lack of faith (Rom 4:4). Basically, we don't work in order to be saved, we work because we are saved (Eph 2:10, Eph 4:12). When you’re a passenger in a vehicle, you have faith that the driver will safely get you to your destination. Jesus Christ is our driver, our ‘spiritual vehicle’ (Rom 5:10, Rom 8:32), and the Holy Spirit is our 'seat-belt' (Eph 4:30), that seals our souls until the day of redemption (Eph 1:13)! Since we're unable to find our own way to salvation we need someone who can, a savior. That's what it means to have faith in Christ, belief that He died on the cross for the forgiveness of all our sins (1 Cor 15:3), was buried, and rose again (1 Cor 15:4), so that we may have everlasting life (Rom 6:22, 1 Cor 15:22). We are not righteous enough for God on our own merits (Titus 3:5). The REAL good news is that our belief in what Jesus Christ did on our behalf makes us the righteousness of God (1 Cor 1:30, 2 Cor 5:21). Amen!
All answers are REVIEWED and MODERATED.
Please ensure your answer MEETS all our guidelines.
A good answer provides new insight and perspective. Here are guidelines to help facilitate a meaningful learning experience for everyone.