In my previous sermon, we took a look at “Who Can Go to Heaven?”. That was the first question of two questions I said that some people often ask about heaven. There was a second question that I mentioned – how do you get to heaven? Those who ask this question are looking for directions to the heavenly kingdom. I want to answer that question in the final sermon of this series. Today, I tell you that Jesus is the way to heaven!
I want to focus on that second answer in today’s sermon.
There has to be some other way
Jesus being the way to heaven is simply not satisfying to some. Why is that? you might ask. Jesus is a very controversial figure to many people. Many do not believe He could have been God in the flesh, and other simply don’t believe He ever existed. The bible itself is also very controversial to some people as well. Some say that the bible is a made-up book of fables while others question who wrote the bible and who transcribed the bible.
We are so wise in our ways. There are many people who say that there are many ways that the Bible can be interpreted. This certainly is a truth I must admit. I can read a passage of scripture and another person can read a passage of scripture and our takeaway can definitely be different. In fact, I have read a passage of scripture in two separate months and gotten something different several times in my life.
We try to apply this same logic to heaven. I remember when I was coming up that it was taught
Questioning the way
Jesus is actually very direct in His answering of this question. You will recall in the third part of this series that I preached about how Jesus is preparing a new heaven for us. I want to take another look at John 14 in our sermon for today.
In John 14:3-4, Jesus says to the disciples, “If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.” Again, we know that Jesus was talking about going away to heaven to prepare a new heaven meant to be the eternal dwelling place for the Lord and His wife (those who believed in Him). The disciples, however, did not fully understand what Jesus was talking about so one of them raise one of the most important questions you will see asked in scripture.
Thomas asks Jesus (John 14:5), “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” You see, Thomas was of the mindset that Jesus was taking about a place in this world still.
In need of directions
In the city/town that you live in, I imagine that you know multiple directions of how to get to your local store. You know the roads to dodge so that you can get to that store as fast as possible, right? If one particular street is closed, you know another street that can still get you there. However, if you are asked to meet someone in a part of the city/town that you are unfamiliar with, you have to get directions. You cannot go to where you have never been before. This is what faces us when it comes to heaven.
Thomas, without realizing it, was asking for the directions to heaven. If I want to get to heaven, I need to ask somebody who is familiar with the place – someone who knows the place. We use GPS nowadays, but before GPS, I’m not going to ask somebody how to get to a place if they themselves don’t really know!
Jesus said that this is the way to heaven:
I want you to take notice of everything that Jesus says in our key verse. ” ‘I’ am the way,” is Jesus’ response to Thomas. Again, I say to you today that Jesus is the way to heaven! Notice how direct and pointed Jesus is about this. He does not say to us that there are a few ways or multiple ways to get to heaven. There are no multiple ways that this scripture can be interpreted. Jesus says that there is only one way to heaven and that is by Him!
The only way to heaven
This must be made clear to everybody because, again, there are people under the impression that there is more than one way to get to heaven. Jesus says the exact opposite! Regardless of your religion, your interpretation, or belief, Jesus says that He is the way to heaven. What does this mean exactly?
If you want directions to heaven, you have to get the directions from Jesus. Do you want to follow somebody to heaven? Well, you have to follow Jesus to heaven because He is the only one that knows the way there! Some will say that this is very emphatic of Jesus. Many will even berate us, the true believer, for preaching this message as a means to keep others out. I want this to be very clear: this is not my message but the message that Christ gave to all of mankind.
I follow Jesus to heaven because He says He knows the way there! Jesus says to us that He came from heaven, knows the place, and can take us there!
13 No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heavenJohn 3:13 NKJV
This is why I follow Jesus! You see, I want to go to heaven and He has shown me how to get there and He’s told me how to get dressed to be able to enter into that heavenly kingdom! Jesus said that He is the truth! Yes, Jesus spoke the truth, but He literally is the truth – there is no lie in Him! I believe in the truth. Jesus says to us that He is life – He is the embodiment and fulfillment of life! Nobody can get to heaven or to the Lord unless they go (follow) Christ.
To deny the way
To hear Jesus say this and then say, “there must be another way to get to heaven,” is to not trust in His word. You are saying to Jesus, “I don’t believe you.” Many people believe they are saying that to the messenger, but you are not denying the messenger, you are denying the message. I want you to understand that this is not my word but the word of Christ.
If it were my way, I would certainly keep the bad folks out and the good folks in. I am pretty sure that you can persuade me just with the bat of an eye, but again, it is not my way.
I want to reference one more scripture. Jesus said in this scripture:
18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.John 3:18 NKJV
You see, it is not about having faith in the name of Leo McCrary; it is all about having faith in the name of the only begotten Son of God. We are not asked to believe in the workings of another man or woman; we are told to believe in Christ. Again, we are not asked to believe in the church; we are told to have faith in the only begotten Son of God. It is Jesus that died on the cross for our sins and rose from the grave with all power in His hands!
If you want to go to heaven and need the directions on how to get there, trust the One who knows the place and knows the way. There are many folks that believe there is another way to heaven but I am not certain what heaven they are speaking of. If you want to go to heaven where there will be no more pain, no more sorrow, and no more death – the heaven spoke of in scripture – you must follow Christ. Christ is the only One who knows the way to heaven.
This is the concluding sermon of my series – Do You Want To Go to Heaven? Over 5-parts of this series we have taken a great look at the kingdom of heaven. Again, I say that I hope that your answer to the question I pose would be “yes, I want to go to heaven.” If you want to go to heaven, be sure to read the invitation (the gospel), eat of the bread of heaven (have faith), and follow Christ (trust in Him).