The Great "I Am"
To the unbelieving Jews of His day, Jesus said, “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins: for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins” (John 8:24). Faith in Jesus as the Christ, the only begotten Son of God, is the only way to escape the condemnation of sin.
The Gospel recorded by the apostle John is known as “The Gospel of Belief.” The central theme of the book of John is recorded in chapter 20:30-31, “And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.” John records in detail seven miracles performed by Jesus that demonstrate His power and authority and prove Him to be the Son of God. John also records seven “I AM” statements made by our Lord. Let us notice them briefly.
1. “I am the bread of life . . . the living bread” (John 6:48, 51). Just as physical food is necessary to sustain our lives here on earth, so Jesus is essential to our lives spiritually. No food, we die! Without Jesus, we die! We must feed upon His teachings, read them, believe them, and obey Him!
2. “I am the light of the world” (John 8:12). We live in a world filled with the darkness of sin (cf. 1 John 5:19). Jesus is “the true light which gives light to every man” (John 1:9). In following the teachings of Christ revealed in the New Testament, the pathway to Heaven is illuminated.
3. “I say to you, before Abraham was I AM” (John 8:58). The Israelites knew the history of their nation. They knew Abraham was their father and that the God of the Old Testament is the I AM, meaning He has always been and always will be. God has declared, “For I am the Lord, I do not change” (Malachi 3:6). Jesus said of Himself that He is the “I AM.” Paul wrote, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).
4. “I am the door of the sheep” (John 10:7). Jesus is the entry way into salvation that God provides through His Son. We can be blessed by God “with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). However, to receive these blessings, we must enter in to the fold of safety through Jesus by being “baptized into Christ” (Galatians 3:27).
5. “I am the good shepherd” (John 10:11, 14). Jesus is our spiritual leader and provider. He has done even more by the fact that He gave His blood on the cross to redeem us from Satan and sin. Without His atoning death we could not be saved. However, with His sacrifice, through our obedience to Him, we can have forgiveness and the hope of eternal life.
6. “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). To receive salvation and every spiritual blessing, we must look to God. Jesus is the only way to the Father. God’s Word, the truth, has the power to make us free (cf. John 8:32). Jesus is the teacher and revealer of all truth. He is the truth. Jesus is the life giver and life sustainer of us all. He has created all things and in Him we can be a “new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
7. “I am the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25). Jesus spoke these words to His friend Martha after the death of her brother Lazarus. Jesus told Martha that He has the power to resurrect us from the dead and to give life physically. He also has the power to resurrect us from spiritual death and give us life spiritually and eternally. Jesus said, “He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die” (John 11:25-26).
Jesus is all these things that we see in scripture and even more. We read of Him, “Though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him” (Hebrews 5:8-9). Are you obeying the great “I AM?” –1311 Sanlor Ave., West Milton, Oh 45383. email@example.com
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