“The Way,” Ensign, Nov. 2008, 34–36
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. …
“In him was life; and the life was the light of men.”1
He said, “I am Alpha and Omega, Christ the Lord; yea, even I am he, the beginning and the end, the Redeemer of the world.”2
He said, “Whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”3
He said, “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”4
He said, “I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”5
He said, “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
“And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.”6
He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”7
Jesus Christ is the Way. He is Light and Life, Bread and Water, the Beginning and the End, the Resurrection and the Life, the Savior of the world, the Truth, and the Way.
There is only one way to happiness and fulfillment. He is the Way. Every other way, any other way, whatever other way, is foolishness.
He offers a well of living water. Either we drink and never thirst more, or we don’t and foolishly remain thirsty still.
He is the Bread of Life. Either we eat and hunger no more, or we don’t and foolishly remain weak and hungry still.
He is the Light of the World. Either we follow Him and see clearly, or we don’t and foolishly remain blind and in darkness still.
He is the Resurrection and the Life. He said, “The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”8 Either we learn of Him and have life more abundantly,9 or we don’t and foolishly remain dead still.
He is the Savior of the world. Either we accept the blessings of His Atonement and are made clean and pure, worthy to have His Spirit, or we don’t and foolishly remain alone and filthy still.
He is the Way.
“We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost.”10 The plan of the Father was implemented by the Son that we may have the Spirit of the Holy Ghost. The way of the Father is the way of the Son. He said, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”11
Only God can bless us. Only He can sustain us. Only He can cause our hearts to beat and give us breath. Only He can preserve and protect us. Only He can give us strength to bear up the burdens of life. Only He can give us power, knowledge, peace, and joy. Only He can forgive our sins. Only He can heal us. Only He can change us and forge a godly soul. Only He can bring us back into His presence. And He will do all of that and much more if we but remember Him to keep His commandments. What then shall we do? We will remember Him to keep His commandments. It is the only intelligent thing to do.
John the Baptist said that while he baptized with water, Jesus baptized “with the Holy Ghost.”12
Nothing in this life is of greater worth than the supernal gift of the Holy Ghost. It is the source of joy, peace, knowledge, strength, love, and every other good thing. With the Atonement, it is the power by which we may be changed and made strong where we are weak. With the priesthood, it is the power by which marriages and families are sealed together eternally.13 It is the power by which the Lord makes Himself manifest unto those who believe in Him.14 Every good thing depends on getting and keeping the power of the Holy Ghost in our lives. Everything depends on that.
To that end, Jesus Christ entered a garden called Gethsemane, where He overcame sin for us. He took upon Himself our sins. He suffered the penalty of our wrongs. He paid the price of our education. I don’t know how He did what He did. I only know that He did and that because He did, you and I may be forgiven of our sins that we may be endowed with His power. Everything depends on that. What then shall we do? We will “take upon [us] the name of [the] Son, and always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given [us]; that [we] may always have his Spirit to be with [us].”15 Everything depends on that.
One of the most popular and attractive philosophies of men is to live life your own way, do your own thing, be yourself, don’t let others tell you what to do. But the Lord said, “I am the way.”16 He said, “Follow me.”17 He said, “What manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am.”18
Don’t think you can’t. We might think we can’t really follow Him because the standard of His life is so astonishingly high as to seem unreachable. We might think it is too hard, too high, too much, beyond our capacity, at least for now. Don’t ever believe that. While the standard of the Lord is the highest, don’t ever think it is only reachable by a select few who are most able.
In this singular instance life’s experience misleads us. In life we learn that the highest achievements in any human endeavor are always the most difficult and, therefore, achievable only by a select few who are most able. The higher the standard, the fewer can reach it.
But that is not the case here because, unlike every other experience in this life, this is not a human endeavor. It is, rather, the work of God. It is God’s work and it is His “glory … to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.”19 There is nothing else like it. Not anywhere. Not ever.
No institution, plan, program, or system ever conceived by men has access to the redeeming and transforming power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the gift of the Holy Ghost. Therefore, while the Lord’s invitation to follow Him is the highest of all, it is also achievable by everyone, not because we are able, but because He is, and because He can make us able too. “We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind [everyone, living and dead] may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.”20
The Lord’s way is not hard. Life is hard, not the gospel. “There is an opposition in all things,”21 everywhere, for everyone. Life is hard for all of us, but life is also simple. We have only two choices.22 We can either follow the Lord and be endowed with His power and have peace, light, strength, knowledge, confidence, love, and joy, or we can go some other way, any other way, whatever other way, and go it alone—without His support, without His power, without guidance, in darkness, turmoil, doubt, grief, and despair. And I ask, which way is easier?
He said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
“Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; … and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
“For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”23
Life is hard, but life is simple. Get on the path and never, ever give up. You never give up. You just keep on going. You don’t quit, and you will make it.
There is only one way to happiness and fulfillment. Jesus Christ is the Way. Every other way, any other way, whatever other way is foolishness.
I bear record of Him, even Jesus Christ, that He is the Son of the living God, He is the Bread of Life, He is the Truth, He is the Resurrection and the Life, He is the Savior and the Light of the World. He is the Way, the only Way.
May we have the good sense to follow Him. In His holy name, even Jesus Christ, amen.