Month of Sundays: Principles

And you know the way to the place where I am going.” “We do not know where you are going, Master,” said Thomas; “so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered: “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life; no one ever comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:4-6)

One of the most important Christian books written between the Apostles and the legalization of Christianity under Constantine was the Egyptian theologian Origen’s On First Principles. The opening line to this is as follows: “All who believe and are assured that grace and truth were obtained through Jesus Christ, and who know Christ to be the truth, agreeably to his own declaration, ‘I am the truth,’ derive the knowledge which incites men to a good and happy life from no other source than from the very words and teaching of Christ.”

Today we lament the fact that the ignorance of the Bible is more and more widespread in our society. That, unfortunately, includes many who profess and call themselves Christians. Patrick Morley speaks about men who are “cultural Christians.” For them, their faith is no more than a spare tire in the trunk, just in case.

It’s one thing to say that we are a Christian. It’s quite another to live a life which is built solely on the foundation of Jesus Christ. If we really believe that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life, and that he is our only way into an eternity with God, then our entire life will be built on the principles that he taught, the life he lived and his presence in us.

All of this is made complete if we truly become his disciples and follow him on a daily basis. What would Jesus have us do? How can we carry his wishes out? That comes through Biblical discipleship and making what’s said on the outside embedded on the inside.

At the end of On First Principles, Origen says “For the divine nature knows even those thoughts which we revolve within us in silence.” What’s revolving in your mind? What needs to be?

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