I am the Way
by H.H. Pope Kyrillos (Cyril) VI
This article by His Holiness the Late Pope Kyrillos VI is a lovely meditation on the words of our Savior: "I am the way, the truth, and the life." Pope Kyrillos meditates upon the writings of St. Arsanious in reflecting upon the road to salvation.
Jesus Christ is the Way
The verse we are contemplating is,
"I am the way, the truth and the
life" (Jn. 14:6). Previously, we talked about the importance of life.
Now we will consider the meaning of "I am the way", which has two
And Jesus is the way to heaven for both
meanings. He is the way we travel to our destination because He did everything
necessary for us to enter heaven. God has promised to take us to heaven because
of our Lord Jesus Christ's actions. If we believe in that and depend on the
Lord Jesus, we will be taken to heaven.
"I am the Way"
The Lord Jesus Christ said those words about Himself. And, the most important words in the Old Testament that tell us about the Lord are, "My name, the Sun of Righteousness" (Mal. 4:2). Every verse that tells us something about the Lord Jesus Christ can be considered a ray of sunlight.
"I am the Way..." These words teach us that Jesus is the way to heaven and the road to salvation. Let us concentrate on this thought. The question we should ask is, What is the condition and shape of this road?
First: The road to salvation through Jesus is easy
For example, when we see a paved road, we say it is easy to travel upon. However, if we were in a desert or on rocky terrain, there would be no signs to direct us. It would be difficult to reach our destination because, with every step, we are at risk of becoming lost. The road to salvation differs from such roads because it is clear and can be recognized. It is also very easy to remain on the path if we request the Lord's help and guidance.
The prophet Isaiah described the days of Jesus and the knowledge of salvation: "A highway shall be there, and a road, and it shall be called the Highway of Holiness. The unclean shall not pass over it... whoever walks the road, although a fool, shall not go astray." (Is. 35:8)
Second: The road to salvation through Jesus is a wide road
This means that any person can walk on it (accommodates us). The Lord Jesus Christ Himself cleared the width of the road, saying: "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." (Matt. 11:28)
St. John also noted how the Lord cleared the way: "And let him who thirsts come." (Rev. 22:17) Also, "whatever you ask the Father in My Name, He will give you." (Jn. 15:16) The words, "when you ask", are the most precious words related to the road to salvation. Whoever is outside the door of salvation can enter; he only need ask. Anyone who walks on the road can obtain "whatever" is needed for his or her happiness and safety.
Third: The road is narrow
I am not contradicting myself when I say that the road to heaven through Jesus is narrow. We saw that is it wide (i.e., can hold anyone), but it is also narrow. It is so wide that the worst sinners - if they repent - can pass through the heavenly gates. However, it is quite narrow for a sinner who does not leave his sins behind when he starts on the road to salvation. He will not be able to enter the door with even the smallest of sins.
That is what the Lord meant when He said, "Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way that leads to life, and there are few who find it." (Matt. 7:13-14)
Let us look at an example to clarify:
When a ship docks, the sailor drops anchor and secures ropes to a solid beam at the pier to assure that the boat will not drift away, but it will still rise and fall with the tide and wind. If the anchor is pulled up, however, the ship will sail quickly when the win blows.
Sin is like the anchor. One sin or immoral thought ties the spirit and stops it from proceeding on the road to salvation. The Lord Jesus will not save us unless we confess and repent every sin and put all of our trust and hope in Him.
Fourth: There is only one road to salvation
Some think there are different roads and each can lead to salvation.
It is not important what I or others
say, but only what the Lord says. There are two verses about this subject:
"There is no Savior but Me." (Is. 43:11) Also, in the other verse, it
is written about the Lord, "Nor is there salvation in any other, for
there is no name under
heaven given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
We have learned that the road of salvation is:
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