67 “You do not want to leave too, do you?” Jesus asked the Twelve.
68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and to know that you are the Holy One of God.”
You have the Words of Eternal Life.
Jesus asked this question of the disciples after delivering a message that was very hard for some of His followers to understand. Several walked away, but Peter answered the way we should all answer such a question from the Lord. “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”
The hard message had to do with what we have come to know as the “Lords Supper” or “Communion.”
Jesus had talked about eating His body and drinking His blood, but many of His listeners didn’t understand the symbolism behind His words. And it is His words that we must pay attention to. He is the one with the words of eternal life.
Jesus tells us more in John 14:6-7;
6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”
And even more in John 10:30;
“I and the Father are one.”
And more in John 11:25;
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die;”
What are the words of Jesus? He tells us back in John 6:63;
“The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life.”
There is a question that we must all answer for ourselves, who is Jesus and what does He mean to us?
Our answer to that question should be the same answer that Peter gives in Matthew 16:15-16;
15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
If we believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the living God, then we must pay attention to the words that He speaks.
When He tells us that He is the only way to God, that He is the way the truth and the Life, we must believe Him. When He tells us that when we have seen Him, we have seen the Father, we must believe Him. And when He tells us that those who believe in Him will have eternal life we must again believe Him.
A few years ago there was a group of so called scholars who got together and put out a list of the words of Jesus divided by what they were sure He said; what they questioned that He said; and what they were sure He didn’t say.
The question I have to ask them is this, were they there, did they hear Jesus speak these words or not?
Of course they were not there.
Who was there, who heard the words of Jesus?
The answer is the writers of the Gospels, they were either by Jesus’ side or were told His words by those who were.
John, the writer of the Gospel of John was one of the closest followers of Christ, he should know what Jesus said and what He didn’t say. All four Gospels were written and distributed within the lifetime of those who witnessed the things that Jesus said and did.
It is pure foolishness to sit here 2,000 years removed from those events and have the arrogance to claim to know what Jesus said or didn’t say.
It was this same John who recorded the words that Jesus said to Him in the book of Revelation chapter 3 verse 20;
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
We must take the words of Jesus to heart, and ask Him to come into us and live with us. We must accept the words of Jesus as truth and Life as He said they were.
We must listen to Him when He speaks to us even today.
I have and many others have written about the many ways that Jesus speaks to us today, but even if you have a problem hearing Him or are unsure if it’s really His voice you are hearing, you can always go back to the source, the Bible and read for yourself the words of Christ. I know and many others have testified that verses that we have read many times before can suddenly come alive before us as we read them again.
Jesus has the power to open the scriptures to us and show us the direction He wants us to move in, if we will only be open to His voice.
So many of this world’s problems could be solved if we all would only listen to words of Jesus and follow Him.
They asked Him once what was the greatest commandment of them all and He gave them a two part answer in Matthew 22:37-40;
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
All of the commandments can be boiled down to these two, Love God and Love each other.
I wish we would all open our hearts to Him, would all hear Him and follow Him. Sadly there are many who will never come to know Jesus, and He told us it would be so in Matthew 7:13-14;
13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.”
I can only pray that more find that narrow gate and enter into life.
This is a fallen world and it’s not really going to be put right until Jesus returns, but as we wait for that time, we can all try and follow His words to Love one another.
I know what some will be saying to themselves as they read this, “Sure Jesus said some good things and loving one another is a good idea, but why should we only believe His words? Why are not the words of other religions leaders not equally as valid?”
The answer to those questions is really quite simple, all those other religions leaders are long dead and buried. Jesus is the ONLY ONE WHO ROSE FROM THE DEAD AND IS ALIVE TODAY.
The whole of the Christian faith hangs on the resurrection of Christ.
Paul covered this much better than I could in 1 Corinthians 15:3-8;
3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.
He continued on later in that chapter and said; “And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith… And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.”
The evidence of Christ’s resurrection is overwhelming to anyone who has studied it. But still there will always be some who will never believe.
But for those of us who do believe that He rose from the dead and is alive today, then we must accept what He said in the Bible as truth. And if what He said in the Bible is true, then we must follow Him.
“Lord to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.”
What are you going to do with the words of Jesus?