THE Gospel of John abounds in clear, positive statements regarding eternal life. In the tenth chapter are recorded the loving words of Christ Jesus, in which he depicts himself as the "good shepherd," and thus explains his mission to mankind: "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." In the same chapter, he expresses his tender love and protecting care for his disciples, and for those of all time who will love and obey his commandments, saying, "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: ... and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." Because he was the well-beloved and obedient Son of God, Christ Jesus received the authority for his gracious words and deeds from his heavenly Father; and all his precious promises will therefore be fulfilled. The lapse of centuries cannot decrease their potency, and the mists of materiality cannot conceal their marvelous light.
The human concept of life falls far short of the spiritual idea which Christ Jesus presented, for he perceived Life as perfect, complete, unending; while the material viewpoint always involves mystery, imperfection, and limitation. One definition of "life" is: "The condition or time between birth and death; any conscious and intelligent existence. Animated existence." To many individuals this definition might be entirely satisfactory, and they might accept it as true; but to others, who have been spiritually awakened, it is far from satisfying.
Our Master understood that God is infinite Life, infinite Spirit, the universal Father, the one perfectly harmonious cause producing only harmonious effects. Jesus understood man to be the image of God, purely spiritual, and as perfect as his divine origin or Father. Man's life was to him the conscious, active reflection and expression of all the qualities of his creator. He said, "This is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent."