How did Jesus live his life? Before the incarnation he lived it in equality with the Father and the Spirit. But during the incarnation he lived it from both equality and dependency. It is this dependency part that we will continue to focus on, because that’s the part that informs how we are to live.
John 6:57. As the living [zoe] Father sent me, and I live [zoe] because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, he also will live [zoe] because of me.
Why does Jesus say that he lives because of the Father? Isn’t he eternal? Well yes, as God. But no as a person. As a person he had to depend on God the Father and God the Spirit. Not just for incarnational life, but for sustained life. Jesus’ human life, his breath, was sustained by God, just like yours and mine. But Jesus isn’t even just talking about physical life is he? Notice our word zoe here once again. Jesus is dependent upon the Father for spiritual life as well.
When Jesus chose to incarnate, to take on flesh, he chose to put his life, his entire life (body, soul, spirit) into the hands of the Father. His eternal, uncreated life, now placed into the will of God. What trust! What faith! What freedom! What love! He did that for you and me.
Re-read the verse again. Where does Jesus take us next. He tells us that we live this same way. If we “feed on him” we will live “because of him.” Jesus is pointing to our union with him by faith – a concept that we will flesh out more and more especially when we get into the Epistles. “Feeding on him” is the faith filled appropriation of his indwelling life, that comes as we celebrate the Eucharist, but also at any time that we remember his sacrificial life for us.
Our whole life, body, soul, and spirit (bios, psyche, and zoe) is in the hands of Jesus. Do you believe this? Do you have the faith that Jesus had in the Father? If not, that’s ok- he had it for you! We live because of him. Because “to live is Christ.”