Jesus and the disciples had gathered for the Passover. Judas had just left to betray Jesus. And Jesus had just told Peter that he would deny even knowing Him before the rooster crowed three times the next morning. Jesus knew that He would soon be arrested and He would give up His life for His friends and for the world. He also knew that most of His friends would abandon Him and that most of them would come back. His own heart was troubled (John 13:21). But He comforted the disciples and continued to teach them. Verses 1-4 read,
“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.4 And you know the way to where I am going.”
Jesus was going to His Father’s house. He wasn’t referring to a physical house. He was talking about the Father’s personage, His being. Being in God’s presence entirely. You and I dwell in tents now. Our earthly bodies are temporary but God in perfection and eternity is a house. He is a house with many rooms where we can dwell and rest forever. Jesus came so that we could live there too. There is space for us. And Jesus made it possible for us to go there. He prepared the way. 2 Corinthians 5:1-3 says,
“For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, 3 if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked.”
The disciples didn’t think they did know the way to get where Jesus was going. They knew by now that when He talked about His Father, He wasn’t referring to Joseph of Nazareth, but His Father in Heaven, God. But did they know the way to the Father? Thomas voiced their concern, “Lord, We don’t know where you’re going. How can we know the way?” Verses 6-7 read,
6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”
Jesus wasn’t reprimanding Thomas for his question. He wasn’t accusing Thomas of not being a good follower. He was teaching. He reminded the disciples of everything He had taught. He was about to truly glorify the Father by His act of complete love and sacrifice. And that was when Thomas and the rest would know, yes Jesus is God, Jesus is the Christ. Although they didn’t understand everything He was teaching at the moment, they would understand it when Jesus ascended to the Father and the Spirit was given to them. Everything Jesus taught would be remembered and understood.
Thomas did know the way to the Father’s house. He knew Jesus. Jesus is the only way. We can’t get to Heaven by being good. That is impossible. We can’t get to know God by looking inward, or searching the skies, or by doing good deeds. We can only get to know God by following Jesus. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life.
Phillip spoke up with his desire to see God. He said, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” I think some people imagine Jesus as exasperated much of the time, but I don’t see Him that way. Love is patient and kind. Jesus is the personification of love. He is Love. I imagine Him answering with that patience and kindness, understanding that the men were only men and didn’t have the Spirit yet to help them grasp the divine concepts. The people we encounter today who might aggravate us and upset us with their misunderstanding of scripture, salvation, and God don’t have the Spirit either. We have no right to answer them with defensiveness or irritation. Verses 9-11 read,
“Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. 11 Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves.”
Jesus already lived in His Father’s house spiritually. He and the Father are united. Jesus is in the Father and the Father is in Him. Jesus said He was going to the Father’s house fully and preparing a place for us. He did that through the cross and resurrection. He made a way by laying down His life so you and I can abide in the Father as well. Believer, Jesus is in the Father, the Father is in Jesus, Jesus is in you, you are in Jesus, the Spirit is in you and you are in the Spirit. Try diagramming that.
Jesus is the truth and He said to believe Him because He said it or believe Him because He proved it but just believe Him. Then He gave one of the most awesome promises ever. Verses 12-14 reads,
“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. 13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.”
If you are living in God and the Father, Son, and Spirit are in you, you can do anything Jesus did and more!!! He said we would do greater things than He did if we do them in Jesus’ name, which means in the will and purpose of God. You’ve got the power of God in you. There are countless lost and hurting people who need a relationship with God. You can bring God to them. You can introduce them to a love so deep they can’t fathom it, a love so strong nothing can change it, and love so perfect that it can heal them perfectly.