Key Verse: “I am the Way, replied Jesus, and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
—John 14:6, Weymouth New Testament
ON THE NIGHT BEFORE his death, while still in the upper room, Jesus gave the following lesson: “In my Father’s house there are many resting-places … I am going to make ready a place for you. … I will return and take you to be with me, that where I am you also may be. And where I am going, you all know the way.”—John 14:1-4, Weymouth New Testament
Our Heavenly Father’s “house” is the universe and, figuratively speaking, heaven is his “throne” and the earth is his “footstool.” (Isa. 66:1; Acts 7:48,49) In God’s “house” are many different “resting-places,” or planes of being. One such place is heaven, where angels dwell. Another is the earth, where mankind dwells now, as well as in Christ’s future kingdom. Those who accept the heavenly call during the present time, and are faithful unto death, will become part of the “little flock” in heaven upon their resurrection.—Heb. 3:1; Luke 12:32; I Pet 1:3,4
Jesus said he was “going to make ready a place” for these called out ones. First, he willingly gave his life for the human race as “a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” (I Tim. 2:5,6) God then resurrected Jesus from death as a spirit being, and seated him “at His own right hand in the heavenly realms, high above all other government and authority and power and dominion, … either in this Age or in the Age to come.”—Eph. 1:20-23, WNT
Jesus told his disciples he would “return” to take them to the place he had prepared, and said, “You all know the way.” Not understanding what Jesus meant, Thomas inquired of the Master, “We do not know where you are going. In what sense do we know the way?” In the words of our Key Verse, Jesus answered that he was the way, the truth, and the life, and that no one can come to God, the Heavenly Father, except through him.
For more than three years Jesus had been making them acquainted with his Father’s character. Hence they were to feel that they knew the Heavenly Father and could appreciate such a dwelling place of righteousness. Their experiences with Jesus, along with his instructions, guidance and example, had made them acquainted with “the way” to God, though they did not recognize these things fully until the Holy Spirit came upon them at Pentecost.
There is only one “way” to be reconciled back to our Heavenly Father and to enter his “resting-place.” It is through accepting by faith the sacrifice of his only begotten Son as “a ransom for all.” Additionally, during the present age, those who consecrate their all to God are “justified by faith … through our Lord Jesus Christ: By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand.”—Rom. 5:1,2
We must also personally apply the “truth,” the words and instructions from Jesus as well as the entire Word of God, in our daily life in order to come into closer harmony with the spirit and character of God. This process is described in the Bible as “sanctification,” a gradual work which should progress throughout the Christian’s life. “This is the will of God, even your sanctification.” “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.”—John 17:17; I Thess. 4:3,4; II Thess. 2:13; I Pet. 1:2