“I am the way, and the truth, and the LIFE...” John 14:6
I suppose there is nothing that we take for granted more than the reality of life. We wake in the morning and get out of bed and go about our daily activities. And yet, we seldom stop to ponder that everything we did that day was because we were animated by this mysterious thing called life. Our eyes see, our ears hear, our hands and skin feel, and our mind makes sense of all of that input and we respond with our arms and legs, our hands and fingers and lips, and all of this stimulates even more actions due to our thoughts and emotions. When death comes, all of this stops. The eyes that once processed billions of pixels in nanoseconds does so no more. Ears that could hear sounds and pass signals on to the mind that could, in turn, instantly parse words and translate those words into something of possibly deep meaning, do so no more. Hands that could write and button a shirt and lovingly caress another are now cold and feel and move no more.
Life is quite a mysterious thing.
If you have ever been in the presence of someone who was alive one second and dead the next, you will have been struck by this mystery of life and how quickly the physical body can become virtually nothing but a mass of material when life ceases.
This, then, is the first essence of what it means that God is life—the physical aspect of it all. He is the Creator of all life. Paul says in Acts 17, “… He Himself gives to all life and breath and all things…” and “in Him we live and move and have our being…”.
Because of this, everything owes its existence to God and therefore owes Him their praise and honor and thanksgiving. It is this aspect of God’s role and action as Creator that man should clearly see, for it is made plain and evident to them. In Romans 1, we find that people suppress this truth and no longer give Him glory or thanks. When this happens, when people turn their hearts and minds and souls away from their Creator, they will most assuredly descend into deep depravity and the most horrible of consequences. We are seeing this with our own eyes and ears in our culture today.
The second essence of what it means that God is life is that beyond physical life there is spiritual life. This is most likely the life that was breathed into Adam. It is the life that survives the grave. When death steals and stills the physical life, the spiritual life of that person continues. Most all the references to life in the New Testament are referring to this:
“…the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. The one who has the Son has the life; the one who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. 1 John 5:11-12
The life here is “eternal life” and it is different than the spiritual life which every human being will carry beyond the grave. Some will carry that life into an eternity separated from God, which is their wish. Others, who are in Christ, will be carried into an eternal presence with Him in the new heavens and the new earth.
Jesus declared this as starkly as it can be put:
“These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” Matthew 25: 46
This eternal life is contrasted with a “living death” that describes those who are outside of Christ:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, the one who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. John 5:24
And as Paul puts it, “we were once dead in our trespasses and sins”.
This aspect is most likely the primary meaning that Jesus was conveying when He said He was the way, the truth and the life, because He continued by saying, “No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
Jesus is eternal life. Oh, how blessed are those who are in Him!
The final essence of what it means to say that God is life is that it refers to the fruitfulness of life.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. John 10:10
We spend a lot of time in the Engagement Project talking about this amazing aspect of God’s nature. I call it God’s “modus operandi”. He creates, equips, empowers and sends His creature to be fruitful and it is this fruitful life that brings glory to God.
Satan, of course, wants to destroy this. That is why Jesus describes him in the first half of John 10:10 as coming only to steal, kill and destroy. These are the actions of the enemy to cut off your fruitfulness and therefore the glory that is due God.
It is good to have life and it is wonderful to have eternal life. But it is to the glory of God that our life is one that is fruitful.
And, dear Remnant, there is nothing our world needs more right now than the people of God being fruitful. We are not to be as the woe in Jude to those who are “clouds without rain, autumn trees without fruit, uprooted, doubly dead.”
God is the God of life and He has blessed us with physical life. And if you are in Christ, He has blessed you with eternal life. Our response is a fruitful life that brings Him glory and new life to those around us.
May our life be that kind of life.