The apostle John, in John 1:4, tells us about Jesus in a way that resolves all the questions about meaning and purpose. He says, “In him was life, and the life was the light of men.” Jesus Himself said that He was “the light of the 06 satisfying lifeworld.” Commenting on this passage, Lewis Foster writes, “But what is life? One can examine objects that have life, but no one has isolated life itself and put it under the microscope. One can take a synthetic grain of wheat containing all the physical ingredients of a true grain of wheat, plant it, and nothing grows. No life is implanted there. Yet some grains of wheat, retrieved from the tombs of the pharaohs in Egypt, have been planted after thousands of years and have grown because life was still present. Life cannot be seen, but it is real.”

The Bible also teaches us that God created different kinds of life. An amoeba has life but not like plants. Plants have life, but not like insects. Insects have life but not like animals. Plato said, “A pig eats, sleeps, and breathes, and still remains a pig.” Most people eat, sleep, and breathe but have no more life than a pig. John wrote his entire Gospel with one purpose in mind. He said in John 20:30 that he wrote all the things that he wrote so that his reader would “believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”

The kind of life offered by Jesus is more than life under the sun described by Solomon in Ecclesiastes. In Ecclesiastes 1:5-8, Solomon describes all the weariness of life. The sun rises & sets. The winds blow and cease. The rivers flow, and there is now nothing new. It’s all meaningless and empty. But Jesus came to bring a different kind of life. It’s as different as the amoeba from a rose, broccoli from a robin, and a pig from a human. I enjoy Eugene Peterson’s translation of the scriptures; he does a nice job with the Gospel of John. According to the Message in John 10:10, Jesus makes it clear what His purpose in coming into the world was. He said, “I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.” The kind of life offered by Jesus is the gift of God. It is real life in a sense beyond our imagination. Life in Christ transcends the mundane observations of the created world and lifts us above the clouds and above the sun. It is a fully satisfying and eternal life.