Think about the importance of knowing who Jesus is. 2 Corinthians 11.4 – Paul warned the Corinthians about people coming along proclaiming another Jesus than the one we proclaimed… Galatians 1.8-9 – anyone who preached a different gospel was to be accursed. Part of that gospel involves understanding who Jesus is. The best way to understand who Jesus is to look at what He actually claimed about Himself.
I. OVERVIEW of JOHN 8.56-58:
- John 8.56 – Jesus brings up Abraham in the midst of a discussion with the Jews
- John 8.57 – Jews: this was preposterous; ridiculous; absurd, and even bizarre.
- John 8.58 – Jesus: before Abraham existed, before Abraham became Abraham, I AM.
- John 8.59 – Jews responded by trying to kill him.
II. UNDERSTANDING THE TERM “I AM”:
- Exodus 3.13-14 – We are introduced to God’s personal name: I AM WHO I AM.
- It means the ever present one; the ever living one; the one that always exists.
- Look back at Exodus 3.12. He is the ever-present one who is with His people.
- Now look at Exodus 3.17. He is the ever-saving one who redeems His people.
- Exodus 4-5 – Moses and Aaron ask Pharaoh to release Hebrews. They’re told to get back to your burdens, 5.4. Moses calls out in distress, 5.22-23.
- Exodus 6.1-5 – First God seeks to reassure Moses.
- 6.1 – A time will come when Pharaoh will drive them out with a strong hand.
- 6.2 – I am the Lord. Here, God uses His personal name again.
- 6.5 – I have heard and I have remembered. These are significant statements.
- 6.6-8 – Now God gives Moses the words to use to reassure the people. Notice how He uses His personal name again: I am the Lord.
- 6.6 – He promises freedom and deliverance.
- 6.7a – I will take you to be my people, and I will be your God.
- 6.8b – I will give it to you for a possession.
- 6.8c – notice how the verse closes with covenant language: I am the Lord.
- Now back to 6.3 – He says that previously He only revealed Himself as El Shaddai or “God Almighty.” Now God is going to show Himself as the Deliverer of His people.
- In the New Testament: I AM becomes the name by which Jesus identifies Himself.
- John 6.35, 48 – I AM the bread of life; John 8.12; 9.5 – I AM the light of the world.
- John 10.9 – I AM the door; John 10.11 – I AM the good shepherd.
- John 11.25 – I AM the resurrection and the life.; John 14.6 – I AM the way, the truth, and the life…; John 15.1, 5 – I AM the true vine…
III. IF JESUS IS “THE SAVING ONE,” THEN:
- Mark 2.1-12 – He must demonstrate power over sin.
- Mark 5.1-20 – He must have power over evil spirits.
- John 14.30 – He must have power over Satan. He has no claim on me.
- John 2.19; 6.38-40; 11.25; 14.19; 10.17-18 – He must have power over death.
- What is our response to Jesus Why should we follow Him? He is the great I AM.
- Do you know God? Have you responded to Jesus?