22nd October 2017

Two Kinds of Life 

“Jesus answered, ‘Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.’”
John 4:13-14 NIV UK

Have you ever chased something in life, only to be disappointed when you finally get it? I know I have. And I know I’m not alone. This seems to be the experience of many people. We see a new toy, a different job, another lifestyle, and we fool ourselves by thinking that, “If I only had that!” then things would be so much different. If we only had that new grill, or that promotion, or that bigger house, then we would be happy, then we could really enjoy life. But the problem is, that “new car smell” only lasts so long, and we’re inevitably faced with the fact that changes in our circumstances don’t seem to satisfy us.

Jesus knew this, and he actually addressed this very thing in the Gospel of John. He told his followers that, “Those who love their life in this world will lose it. Those who care nothing for their life in this world will keep it for eternity” (John 12:25, NLT).

The interesting part here is that Jesus is talking about two very different kinds of life. There are only two Greek words used for “life” in the New Testament: psyche and zoe. “Psyche” refers to physical life, the kind that’s consumed with our circumstances (our job, living situation, daily stresses, etc). But ‘zoe’ refers to something deeper and more long-lasting: the eternal life that we’re welcomed into as Christians. Indeed we’re invited to share in Jesus’ own life and in his relationship of faith, hope and love for the Father and the Holy Spirit. We’re invited into the circle of the triune life of the eternal and to begin to share in their fellowship and communion with one another. And by the miracle of grace we can begin to enter in while still remaining human and while we’re still living in what Paul calls “this present evil age.”

You see, Jesus knew that a transformation of circumstances cannot satisfy us. Only a transformation of being, our being in relationship with God, can do that. That’s exactly what he offers us: being at peace with God, receiving daily his forgiveness, his love and hope in his coming kingdom. And by his Holy Spirit we have the opportunity to serve as channels of his grace and pointers to his coming kingdom. Jesus asks us to stop chasing psyche, and instead accept the wealth of zoe that he offers us freely.

So the next time you’re tempted to think, “If only I had…” about something that might only satisfy you temporarily, remember that Jesus offers us a better kind of life: the kind that lasts forever.

Heavenly Father, you have offered us life, and life eternal. But that great gift includes translating our worthless lives into ones of great value to you and to your purpose for this world and universe. And you offer it freely. Thank you! In Jesus’ name we pray.

Study by Joseph Tkach


About the Author:
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email: admin@daybyday.org.uk

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