This week, the pastor of the church I go to chose to preach on the subject of the Great Commission and how we apply it in our own lives. As part of his introduction to the topic, he listed some of the many questions that Jesus asked the apostles, disciples, and people as He interacted with them: “What do you seek?” “What do you want from Me?” And especially, “Who do you say I am?”
As I thought about some of those incisive questions, I found my mind drawn to the question Jesus asks His disciples at one point in His ministry:
So Jesus said to the Twelve, “Do you want to go away as well?”
Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life,
and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.
(John 6.67-69, ESV)
The more I pondered Peter’s response, the more I came to realize that that response is also mine. While I can sometimes appear a bit apathetic and occasionally even doubtful about certain doctrines or the strength of certain areas of my faith, when all the external aspects are stripped away I cling desperately to Christ alone as the Holy Saviour.
Because without Him being who He says He is, there is no point for me to continue trying. Without the moral compass that He has laid down, I would be adrift in the ethical morass that defines this world. Without the assurance of significance and discreteness that He provides, I would be fully vulnerable and constantly fighting the existential doubts that still frequently attempt to pull me down. Without the hope and vision that He provides, I would be dead from despair and apathy. Without the grace and inner regeneration that He is working in me, I would be a burnt-out husk, incapable of social interaction and compassion.
To me, the reality of Jesus, and the reality of His being Who He says He is, is paramount to my continued existence. In a very crucial way, He defines my motivation for continuing on and not giving up. For not allowing myself to cease to exist. For being willing to make sacrifices for those I care for and to help take the blows that life aims at them. If I ever choose to reject the reality of my God and Savior, then I am dead. Not just in the sense of spiritual death. A day in which I turn away from God with the uttermost core of my being is a day on which I will cease to continue living physically as well. Because if I reject Him, I will have nothing left, for there is nothing outside of Him that is worth living for.
A lot of people talk about there being many different ways to get to God. Personally, I don’t believe that such a thing is possible. I am a person who likes as many options as I can get. But I cannot accept that there are options in approaching God . . . because to accept that is to say that God is not unique (Deuteronomy 5, John 3). To say that morals do not matter (Romans 6, 1 Corinthians 10). To say that our existence, our choices, and our destinies are not significant to Him (Psalm 139, Romans 8). To say that it does not matter whether we hold others in equal esteem with ourselves (Matthew 7, John 15). If these are not truths we hold to, what is there left to hold on to in life?
There is no other way. There is no other way. There is only one way, one way that I cling to, because it is the only way that promises me life. There is nowhere else for me to turn.