“I am the way, the truth and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” John 14:6
Tonight is the night before Easter where Jesus gave the world the proof that there is life after death….the proof Jesus loved us more than we can imagine, the proof that even the worst of our sins can be forgiven, and the proof that God desires nothing more for us than to be reunited with him in heaven.
It seems quite fitting on this night before we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, that we talk about how Jesus is the life.
In the Bible, there are two kinds of lives – a life on earth in your body and your spiritual life that is everlasting and can be lived in either heaven or hell. The verse, “I am the way, the truth and the life” is referring to both.
Jesus gives us eternal life in heaven through his resurrection. Most Christians believe when Jesus died on the cross, he gathered all of the sins of the world (from the past, present and future) to die with him knowing he would be resurrected to live in heaven with his Father. By teaching us how to live on earth as it is in heaven and then cleansing the world of sins, all souls could then return to our Father and live once again in heaven with God the Father, his son, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
In exchange for his temporary life on earth, Jesus redeemed our sins to give us eternal life with Him in Heaven.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
Jesus took on the imperfections of every soul and our sins were crucified with him so that the old ways could die and a new life could begin – both in heaven and on earth.
During his life, Jesus taught us how to live and during his death Jesus taught us how to forgive because nothing is worth holding onto that doesn’t bring us joy, peace and come from love. In fact, holding onto our sins, our perspectives of evil, our negative thoughts, words and actions takes away our life and leads us into death.
Jesus taught us the eternal gifts of heaven are worth far more than our most treasured possessions in our earthly life yet he wants us to know it is possible to “live on earth as it is in heaven” as The Lord’s Prayer suggests we can do.
God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit desire our life on earth to be as good as it is in heaven, as it once was in the beginning times of Adam and Eve.
To understand why God sent his only “begotten” son to live on earth and take away the sins of the world, we need to go back to the book of Genesis. In the beginning, everything God created was good however the world succumbed to the devil’s temptation to doubt in God’s goodness. The devil, disguised as a serpent, convinced Adam and Eve that God was denying them powers by forbidding them to eat the fruit of the one tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.
And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” Genesis 2:16-17
Rather than believe in God’s word, Adam and Eve tasted the fruit that contained knowledge of evil and immediately they saw the world in a different perspective – one of the absence of goodness. They suddenly viewed their nakedness as shameful, they felt the need to try and hide and they felt unworthy to be seen by God.
As God had warned them, the fruit of that tree will only bring death for the knowledge of things that are absent of God’s goodness, changes the way you feel and in turn changes the way the very cells in your body behave – they begin to die.
Our cells thrive on positive thoughts, appreciation, seeking goodness in all things – love. Science and research by Bruce Lipton has shown that, people can heal from all disease simply by changing their thoughts. When our cells are stressed by thinking negative, ungrateful or worrisome thoughts, they go into a defensive mode that cannot sustain the body.
All of the goodness that God had created in the Garden of Eden was no longer seen nor appreciated for what it was by Adam and Eve. Their perspective was no longer based on truth and therefore they were no longer worthy to be in the presence of God for Heaven contains only goodness, only things that bring life.
According to the bible, Adam and Eve’s actions stained their offspring for all of their descendant’s DNA would now contain the memories of their parent’s cells that were instantly filled with imperfect thoughts from having the knowledge of evil (the absence of goodness). As a result, God banned all humans from the Garden of Eden which was heaven on earth.
And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.” So the Lord God banished him from the Garden of Eden to work the ground from which he had been taken.After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life. Genesis 3:22-24
When Jesus came to earth to forgive the sins of the world, “He came that they might have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10
By dying on the cross, Jesus took away the sins of the world so once again we were all worthy to return to heaven.
So then as through one trespass the judgment came unto all men to condemnation; even so through one act of righteousness the free gift came unto all men to justification of life. Romans 5:18
Jesus is considered the new Adam, giving humanity a new life in a new world – one that now understands we were created to love, we were created to live together in peace, we were created to live in joy. And just as Eve was the one who offered the fruit to her husband, Mary is the new Eve to offer the world the fruit of her womb that will bring life.
For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. 1 Corinthians 15:22
Today we are in the middle of a global pandemic with thousands of people dying, thousands more falling ill and people full of heart break and fear yet in these dark times, there is a light.
Almost as if when Adam and Eve took a bite of the apple and saw the world in a completely different way, this pandemic has given us an amazing opportunity to view our entire way of life and the opportunities it holds for us, in a whole new light.
Everything has come to a stand still and given us a chance to actually experience life in ways we never thought possible, in ways we never could have imagined.
Many of us are living without the busy schedules we are used to and have found comfort in the calm.
We are learning to live a simpler life with more intentional planning and thoughtfulness in what we do. We are called to think of others just as much as we think of ourselves.
We are missing our everyday interactions with others and recognizing we really do need one another.
Some of us have been blessed to have our children return home and others of us cannot wait to be reunited with them again.
Some of us are able to see mountains and oceans and skylines we’ve never before seen in our lifetime because our collective pollution that we thought could never be improved has drastically dissipated.
How can we ever go back to living in our old world now that we have seen what is possible, what is important, what is true?
This is all happening during the Easter season which is a time for contemplation, forgiveness and renewal.
We are called to look at our transgressions and find ways to overcome them. We are called to strengthen our faith, study God’s word and seek Christ in all things. We are called to love one another. We are meant to rest and we are meant to breathe in goodness again.
As Christ taught us, we are meant to give up our sins, follow Jesus’s way and rise again to a new life living on earth as it is in heaven.
In most depictions of Jesus’ mother, Mary, she can be seen stepping on the serpent from the Garden of Eden. By being the vessel for bringing Christ into the world, Mary has defeated all evil. We have an opportunity, a way to follow the truth to a new life. It is said the devil fears her the most.
And although Mary’s words are rarely shared in the Bible, the last words she says are about her son and they are of course the most important message to hear this Easter,
“Do whatever he tells you.” John 2:5
May this Easter, you discover the life of Jesus Christ and may it inspire us to take this unprecedented opportunity to begin to live a new life on earth as it is in heaven.