Most of us know what it is like to have a friendship or even a romantic relationship as it relates to daily personal life. It is the connection to one or more individuals that creates a sense of acceptance, emotional attachment, and intimacy. Only those who are closest to you, have a place reserved in your life as opposed to those who are only acquaintances who would be left standing on the outskirts.
It is the relationship and connection with those who are closely held to your heart, that creates a significant bond that is difficult to shatter under negative circumstances. In such relationships that are built, there is a commonality in addition to understanding one another. However, if one does not maintain a steady connection with those who are deemed important, there is a great potential for a loss of said connection which means the relationship no longer thrives.
As a result, any relationship whether familial, friendly, or romantic begins to suffer from a breakdown which can ultimately lead to a relational demise. This means that in order for one to have relationships that are built to thrive, there must be a continual connection and growth in each interpersonal relationship.
In the book of John chapter 8, the principle of knowing God through Jesus Christ is shown in verses 12 – 19. Jesus is speaking to Pharisees who were religious individuals who believed that life was better lived according to the Mosaic law rather than deviating from the law. Throughout scripture, the Pharisees can be seen challenging Jesus on various issues, however, Jesus would always bring them back into accountability and God’s truth.
Verses 12-13 in John chapter 8 says the following:
(NLV) “Jesus spoke to all the people, saying, “I am the Light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will not walk in darkness. He will have the Light of Life.”The proud religious law-keepers said to Him, “You are talking about Yourself. What You say about Yourself is not true.”
In verse 13, the Pharisees challenge Jesus regarding His statement that He is the Light of the world. One reason as to why the Pharisees misunderstood and believed Jesus to be a liar is because they were so caught up in their allegiance to the Mosaic law. The scripture in this translation refers to the Pharisees as “proud religious law-keepers.” This suggests that the Pharisees were arrogant and they bought into the lie that religion was superior to following the words of Christ.
Even in our world today, there are many who have placed much emphasis on worldly knowledge and human wisdom that there isn’t a reverence for the things of God. There are religious zealots who proclaim that what they believe is the truth, however, anything that stands outside of the truth of Jesus Christ is following in step with satan’s deceptions. The proof of this is that Jesus says in verse 12 that anyone who follows Him will not walk in darkness.
This means, that without Christ one cannot live in this life and navigate successfully because only Jesus is the light by which we have guidance to the path that God desires for humanity. Regardless of other religions or even those whose choose not to believe, Jesus Christ is the only way, the only truth, and the only way to life. (John 14:6)
Jesus continues in the next few verses:
(NLV) “Jesus said, Even if I speak of Myself, what I am saying is true. I know where I came from and where I am going. You do not know where I came from or where I am going. You say as a man would say if people are guilty or not guilty. I am not saying anyone is guilty. But even if I did, it would be true. I am not alone. The Father Who sent Me is with Me. It is written in your Law that when two men agree about something, it proves it is true. I speak for Myself and the Father Who sent Me speaks for Me.”
Essentially, Jesus further states to the Pharisees that He is speaking the truth, but His truth is validated by God Almighty. Jesus says that He speaks for Himself, but it is God the Father who sent Jesus and speaks for Him. This makes it so that Jesus’ words are the final authority because it is God who has given Him the authority to speak with such truth.
However, notice that Jesus says in verse 14 that the Pharisees do not know where Jesus came from or where He is going. Verse 19 says:
(NLV) “The proud religious law-keepers asked Him, “Where is Your Father?” Jesus said, “You do not know Me or My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.”
Jesus’ words make it clear that the Pharisees did not have a relationship with Jesus Christ. As John 14:6 states, Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. Without a relationship with Jesus, there isn’t a way to have a relationship with God the Father. The Pharisees did not know Christ in obedience or in following Him, which is why they never understood Christ’s words. If they were followers of Christ, then they would have known God for themselves.
The question that all of us must answer is whether or not, we know Jesus for ourselves. With all of the deception that exists in our world, it is very easy to think that one can have true peace, joy and understand love without knowing Jesus Christ. It is Christ who gives us the opportunity to know God because Christ is the only way to God.
The world we live in promotes all inclusive religion. One can worship Buddha or Allah and it still lead back to the same source. However, this notion is false and it is one of the many lies that satan uses to distort the clarity that God offers. Without having a relationship with Jesus Christ, then there is a loss in connection to God the Father.
God desires to know each human being in intimacy. Sin is what separates us from having an unhindered relationship with God. It was God’s plan that Jesus Christ would die on the cross as the atonement for the world’s sins. Without the shedding of Christ blood, there would be no other way to remove the stain of sin. There would also be a relational gap between humanity and God.
This means that because of Christ, we have an opportunity to know God. However, it takes a decision to know God through Jesus Christ. How do you do this? The first step is to come to the acknowledgement that you are a sinner and need a savior. If you don’t know Jesus Christ in the pardon of your sins, then you are living in sin. Once you have acknowledged that you are a sinner, and you have repented from your sin and turned away from your sin, it begins the process of a relationship with Christ.
For those of us who are in Christ, we must seek God daily through prayer, reading scripture, and worship. To know God is to have an ongoing and intimate relationship with Christ. It doesn’t just happen overnight as some may believe. Just like any human relationship, it takes time to experience growth and connection. The more you spend time with God, the more you begin to know Him and the more your life exemplifies who God is.
It is only through Christ that we are able to show love to a dying world, and to give sinners an opportunity the receive the invitation to know God through Christ. Regardless of what our world promotes today, the overarching truth is that Jesus is the only way to have everlasting life. He is the only way to know what love is, and how to love others. Do you know Jesus?