Do You Know the Way?
We will never know what heaven is really like until we get there, and while it is fun to imagine what our heavenly homes will look like, or what kind of jobs we may have there, we must be mindful that not everyone will be there. Fortunately, Jesus made it very clear how we can get to heaven. Before Jesus died, he addressed his closest friends and assured them, as well as us, that he is going to heaven ahead of us and preparing a place for us there.
2My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 4You know the way to the place where I am going.”
If this passage is confusing, you are in good company. Even Jesus’ closest friends were confused as to what and where Jesus was referring when he made this statement.
“No, we don’t know, Lord,” Thomas said. “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
I empathize with Thomas, as he may have been feeling the same frustration I feel when I am lost and can’t figure out how to get to where I want to go. It is more difficult to get lost today with phones and GPS navigation; but even with the help of technology, my wife and I have been in plenty of arguments about which way to turn and whether I should listen to Siri.
Thomas, like some of the other disciples, didn’t understand at the time that it was better for them in the long run for Jesus to leave them in order to prepare their place in heaven. Jesus had spent three years giving them directions to his Father’s house. He gave them, and us, one very clear piece of information.
“Everyone who is nice will go to heaven?” Not quite.
“As long as you don’t kill anyone or steal anything, you’ll get into heaven?” No, that wasn’t it.
“Anyone who goes to church will go to heaven?” That’s not it either.
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”
We cannot earn God’s love. Not by being nice or trying to be a good person, whatever that means.
8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — 9not by works, so that no one can boast. 10For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
The only way to heaven, to get to the Father, is by believing in his Son, Jesus, that he was who he said he was, and that he died for our sins and rose again. And through our faith in Jesus, we have access to the glory that “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).
If you made a decision this week to follow Jesus, to believe that he is the only way to heaven, pray this prayer:
God, I admit that I am a sinner saved by grace. I believe that Jesus is your Son, whom you sent to take my place on the cross, and whom you raised from the dead. And I want to confess that I am placing my faith in you, trusting you with my life. Amen.
If you made that decision for the first time, be sure to tell someone – your Campus Pastor, a trusted friend, or get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This post was written by Ryan Cook. Ryan is the business director at Chick-Fil-A in Toledo. He enjoys spending time with his wife, son, and daughter, and watching Cleveland sports as much as anyone can. Follow him on twitter @cookfila
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