It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time
had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. The evening meal was
JESUS Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, trust also
in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told
you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And 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. You know the way to the place where I am going.”
Thomas said to him,
THOMAS Lord, we don’t know where you are going.
JOHN We need not fear because
Jesus is preparing for us and will spend eternity with us.
JESUS Father, the
time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted
him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you
have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true
God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
JOHN So we get eternal life – by
knowing God the Father himself through his Son, Jesus Christ. Eternal life
requires entering into a personal relationship with God in Jesus Christ. When we
admit our sin and turn away from it, Christ’s love lives in us.
Eternal life is not an extension of a person’s miserable, mortal life; eternal
life is God’s life embodied in Christ given to all believers now as a guarantee
that they will live forever. In eternal life there is no death, sickness, enemy,
evil, or sin. We need to begin to evaluate all that happens from an eternal
JESUS I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him
who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from
death to life. I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the
dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live.
Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves
will hear his voice and come out – those who have done good will rise to live
and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned.
JOHN “Eternal life” –
living forever with God – begins when you accept Jesus Christ as Lord. At that
moment, new life begins in you. You still will face physical death, but when
Christ returns again, your body will be resurrected to live forever.
Now, through the breath of Jesus, God imparted eternal, spiritual life. With
this inbreathing came the power to do God’s will on earth. There is life in the
breath of God.
JESUS Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and
broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But
small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find
MATTHEW This does not mean that it is difficult to become a Christian, but
that there is only one way to live eternally with God and only a few that decide
to walk that road. Living his way may not be popular, but it is true and right.
JESUS Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of
heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will
say to me on that day, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in
your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?” Then I will tell them
plainly, “I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!”
MATTHEW On “that day”
(the day of judgment), only our relationship with Christ – our acceptance of him
as Lord and our obedience to him – will matter.
JESUS Anyone who loves his
father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or
daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and anyone who does not take his
cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life, will lose it,
and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
MATTHEW Clinging to this
life may cause us to forfeit the best from Christ in this world and in the next.
The more we love this life rewards (leisure, power, popularity, financial
security), the more we will discover how empty they really are. The best way to
enjoy life, therefore, is to loosen our greedy grasp on earthly rewards so that
we can be free to follow Christ. In doing so, we will inherit eternal life and
begin at once to experience the benefits of following Christ.
JOHN Jesus you
have shown the way to eternal life, is as secure as our trust in you. The only
issue that still needs to be resolved is our willingness to believe and then
SIMON PETER Lord, you have the words of eternal life. We believe and know
that you are the Holy One of God.
JOHN There is no other way. We need to stay
with you when we are confused or feel alone.
JESUS What good will it be for a
man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give
in exchange for his soul?
MATTHEW What we accumulate on earth has no value in
purchasing eternal life. Even the highest social or civic honors cannot earn us
entrance into heaven. So if we evaluate all that happens from an eternal
perspective, we will find our values and decisions changing.
believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow
from within in.”
JOHN Jesus, you used the term “living water” to indicate the
Holy Spirit? And wherever the Holy Spirit is accepted, he brings eternal life.
SIMON PETER We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for
MATTHEW As believers, our true reward is God’s presence and power through
the Holy Spirit. Later, in eternity, we will be rewarded for our faith and
service. If material rewards in this life came to us for every faithful deed, we
would be tempted to boast about our achievements and act out of wrong
RULER Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?
You know the commandments: “Do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal,
do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.”
RULER All these I
have kept since I was a boy.
JESUS You still lack one thing. Sell everything you
have and give it to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come,
follow me. This ruler sought reassurance, some way of knowing for sure that he
had eternal life. He wanted Jesus to measure and grade his qualifications, or to
give him some task he could do to assure his own immortality. So Jesus gave him
a task – the one thing the rich ruler knew he could not do.
JESUS The hour has
come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel
of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it
dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the
man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever
serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father
will honor the one who serves me.
JOHN We must be willing to die if doing so
will glorify Christ. We must disown the rule of our own self-centeredness. By
laying aside our striving for advantage, security, and pleasure, we can serve
God lovingly and freely. Releasing control of our lives and transferring control
to Christ brings eternal life and genuine joy.
JESUS When the king came in to
see the guests, at a wedding feast he noticed a man there who was not wearing
wedding clothes. “Friend,” he asked, “how did you get in here without wedding
clothes?” The man was speechless.
Then the king told the attendants, `Tie him hand and foot, and throw him
outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”
For many are invited, but few are chosen.
MATTHEW Jesus, the wedding clothes
represent – that each person must choose to put the righteousness needed to
enter God’s kingdom – His lordship over their life.
We must not make up our own ideas about eternity and heaven by thinking of it
and God in human terms. We should concentrate more on our relationship with God
than about what heaven will look like. All we need to know is that eventually we
will find out, and it will be far beyond our greatest expectations.
Our concepts of heaven are limited by time, death, and sin. We don’t know
everything about our resurrection life, but Jesus affirms that our eternal life
will be different from what we are used to here and now.
JESUS Eternal life can
start now for you, in your current life. All you have to do is “Love and believe
me with your whole heart, soul and life, and then make me your Savior and Lord.