Two dimensions, three dimensions, four dimensions… my brain is making all of this up. This body of mine isn’t actually real, it’s only a perception of reality. When I touch a hot stove, it doesn’t really burn me. My brain tells my body to think that it burns me, but, in reality, that burning sensation isn’t real.
Believe it or not, there are philosophies on life that are similar to what I just wrote. People believe that this life isn’t actually here, and what we see isn’t actually real. They think that our brains are making everything up. If you’ve ever seen the movie The Matrix, you have an idea of what I’m talking about. I don’t know the details of those sort of philosophies, so I can’t explain any of them further. But what I can tell you is that most matrix-like philosophies do stem from truth. They, however, are not the truth but do carry a significance.
What Jesus says is real–what he says is the true reality we live in–is God’s reality: “For my (God) flesh is real food and my blood is real drink” (John 6:55).
When Jesus said that, the crowd that was standing in front of him thinned out quickly, but that’s because they didn’t understand what he was talking about. He wasn’t talking about cannibalism, he was talking about the spirit of God. What he’s saying is that God is reality, and the things of this world aren’t the truth–God is truth. But he isn’t saying that this world is just a figment of our imaginations and that it doesn’t really exist. He’s simply making the point that this world will die, and it can’t bring itself back to life. Therefore, the world has no life to offer. “The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life” (John 6:63).
It wouldn’t be wise to go around believing that this world isn’t actually real, because it is real. Our actions have consequences, and what we do with ourselves while living on this earth matters to God. The irony is, however, that God doesn’t want us to live as if our lives depended on earth. He wants us to live as if our lives depended on him, because in the real reality–God’s reality–our lives do depend on God and only God. “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal” (Matthew 6:19).