I came to a profound realization the other day as I was watching a movie about Jesus. It was just a clip where Jesus is summoned because Lazarus has died. Lazarus's two sisters - Mary and Martha - are there along with a huge crowd. Then the following dialogue takes place:
Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. [But] even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you.”
Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise.” Martha said to him, “I know he will rise, in the resurrection on the last day.” Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life”He does not say he shows us the resurrection or teaches how to attain it. No, he IS the resurrection. He continues by saying "Whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” She affirms that she does.
Jesus is the only person to ever claim to BE and not just SHOW the path or the way. There are many more examples throughout the scriptures:
2) I am the Bread of Life
3) I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life
4) I am the vine, you are the branches
5) I am
6) I am the Light of the World
7) I am the Gate
8) I am the Good Shepherd
The point is Jesus isn't saying "I will bring you to the way, the truth, and the life" or "I am your guide" or "follow me". Although he does say to follow him, the ultimate destination is him. Jesus is God and it is through him, through the eating of his flesh and drinking of his blood that we rise to new life like Lazarus did. Jesus lived a perfect and holy life and he tells us he is the way. We have no choice but to follow him.