Experiencing Eternal Life in the Now
During His private time alone with The Heavenly Father in prayer, Jesus of Nazareth reveals to us today, the very practical meaning of eternal life.
In the Gospel of John 17:3, Jesus states “and eternal life is this: to know you, the one true God, and him whom you sent, Yeshua the Messiah. [Complete Jewish Bible]. Brothers and Sisters, it does not get any clearer than that. Jesus in essence is saying that eternal life is having an intimate encounter with the One True God [echad], through the person of the Son [the Son of Man], whom the Father sent. Eternal life is a quality of living that is empowered, sustained and freely giving in the present sense due to the miracle of reconciliation between a Holy God and sinful humanity.
In all of the various ways that Jesus has been historically depicted [both negatively and positively], His presence into this sinful world as Immanuel [God with us] is the most powerful. Jesus’ role as both the Spiritual and Physical representative of God’s sovereign plan of redemption is beyond our human comprehension. The recorded manifestation of Jesus as the long-awaited Messiah [Mashiach] is a clear example of God announcing His messianic rule over the evil kingdoms of this age. As Jesus embodied the role as Messiah, he partially fulfills the Old Covenant promises that were spoken by God to Abraham in Genesis.
The simple yet powerful definition of what is eternal life by Jesus in John 17:3 speaks also of five other basic yet practical requirements. Eternal life is Knowing, Learning, Trusting, Following and Placing one’s own faith, in all the faithfulness that Messiah accomplished as the Son of Man.
Eternal life is a combination of encountering the Father, through the revealed Messiah [his teachings and practices]. Then we will learn of the atoning salvation of a divine yet human sacrifice for human sin. Faith must center on both the Person of Jesus and the Atonement of Jesus as Messiah.
Jesus also mentions in John 10:10 that He has come that each soul might have life and have it abundantly. Both are one of the same thing-Eternal Life. Eternal [‘ad] implies perpetual, of continuous existence. Life [hios], life, [zoe], the absolute fullness of life both essential and ethical which belongs to God, and through Him both the “hypostatic Logo” and to Christ in whom the “Logos” put on human nature, [Immanuel].
Jesus as The Father’s prophetic Messiah speaks to a major revelation of God’s sovereign plan of restoration. God within Messiah was successful in reconciling the world to Himself by rendering all human sins, misdeeds, deviations from absolute moral truth-void as we are now in Christ. Messiah’s actual presence, purpose and plan in human history, now and forever enable God and human beings to have a renewed harmonious daily encounter. We are now friends and family members within the Kingdom of God. Thanks to our Living Savior that has freely given to those who receive, the gift of the ministry of reconciliation. This term reconciliation, [katallaghv] is in fact the actual “exchange life”. It is restoration to favor by trusting in the death, burial and resurrection of Messiah.
In closing, let us consider 2 Cor. 5:18-20, where the Apostle Paul challenges us today to participate in the ministry of reconciliation. We all are commanded to live and to be witnesses as disciples of Messiah as well as our proclaiming the very message that transformed us out of darkness to within the Light which is Christ our Lord.
Yes there is a future sense of eternal life, but those who wait on the future aspect, would be wise to deal with the present redemptive aspect of the abundant life with is in Our Living Savior.
Grace and Peace