“A life without eternity is unworthy of the name of life. Only eternal life is true.” Those are words from Saint Augustine, his way of articulating the importance of eternal life on our journey along the path of Jesus. We don’t see eternal life, mentioned as such, very often in the gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, but John also must have thought it was crucial since in his gospel it appears over a dozen times. For example, sometimes we’re told that that whoever believes in the son of God has eternal life. Other times we’re given a contrast between the perishable things of this world and the imperishable peace and joy found in the eternal life of Christ.
So, why does John seem to have so much to say about eternal life compared to the other gospels? Well, some say John uses the term “eternal life” as a way of referencing God’s Kingdom, definitely a central theme of the gospels, and I think this holds some truth.
Although, if so, then in speaking of it in terms of eternal life John is also helping us understand a bit more about what the Kingdom of God is like. Continue reading