Jesus defined what eternal life is in His prayer in John 17:3, “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” This is the sum of eternal life. It is to know God. It is to be in right relationship with God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Notice, Jesus didn’t say that it is to know about God. It is more than just an acknowledgment of fact. All men know about God but suppress that truth in unrighteousness (Rom. 1:18). Jesus also makes clear that it’s more than just association. Eternal life isn’t found in just being around God. Christ also doesn’t reduce having eternal life to “…that they may act like they know You.” It is more than action. It is to know Him.
Everyone has a relationship with God. It is just that apart from Jesus – we are as Paul calls us, “children of wrath.” We are condemned, living in rebellion to God and His will, kept under His wrath as the just penalty for our trespasses and sins. It is only those in Christ who have a new relationship. In receiving Christ, we are given the “right to become children of God” (John 1:12). We are rescued out of the domain of darkness, justified, reconciled and graciously adopted into the family of God. This new relationship is remarkable! Once separated, in our sins, through Christ we now have access to the Father by the Spirit (Eph. 2:18). We can run confidently to His throne, just as little ones would, to find the grace, mercy, and help that is needed. This is what Christ has accomplished in His life, death, and resurrection. The Holy and Righteous God has made the way for us to know Him and grow in knowing Him through the Son and by the Holy Spirit.
Sadly, there are times we lose sight of this relationship we have. We act as if Christ died just to give us a weekly routine or so that we would modify our behavior. Make no mistake, Christianity is life-changing but that is entirely because of who we’ve been brought to know. We’ve been saved to know and grow in enjoying God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. We are made alive, our eyes opened, hearts made new and minds renewed to live in relationship with Him. This is what transforms us to be like Him and live in a way that honors Him. It’s not just when we know about Him, choose to be associated with Him, or act like we know Him. It’s when we know Him. So, do you know Him and are you seeking to know Him more through His Word? Knowing Him is the matter of eternal life. It means everything to us. Get to know the One who has made Himself known!
Longing to Know Him More, Pastor Rudy