I just published a piece called “Jesus & His 7 “I am” Statements.” However, there is one more big “I am” statement that I did not mention, but it is vital in fully understanding who Jesus is.
In the beginning of His ministry, the ruling Jews tried to accuse Jesus of being possessed by a demon because of the claims He was making about Himself. This accusation prompted a fascinating conversation through which Jesus was able to explain who He really is.
“The Jews answered him, “Aren’t we right in saying that you are a Samaritan and demon-possessed?”
“I am not possessed by a demon,” said Jesus, “but I honor my Father and you dishonor me. I am not seeking glory for myself; but there is one who seeks it, and he is the judge. I tell you the truth, if anyone keeps my word, he will never see death.”
At this the Jews exclaimed, “Now we know that you are demon-possessed! Abraham died and so did the prophets, yet you say that if anyone keeps your word, he will never taste death. Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?”
Jesus replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me. Though you do not know him, I know him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him and keep his word. Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; he saw it and was glad.”
“You are not yet fifty years old,” the Jews said to him, “and you have seen Abraham!”
“I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!”
Folks, that is an incredibly bold statement! Why? Because Jesus was telling them that He is God! Jesus was born through the lineage of Abraham through the covenant of Isaac. I wrote a piece about that titled “Nothing Is Impossible” just a few days ago.
“Thus there were fourteen generations in all from Abraham to David, fourteen from David to the exile to Babylon, and fourteen from the exile to the Christ.”
Nobody else on earth has ever said “I am” when speaking about themselves, except for God, the Creator of Heaven and earth, and we learned that way back when God spoke to Moses through the burning bush!
“God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.'”
The ruling Jews of the day knew exactly what Jesus was saying about Himself when He said, “before Abraham was born, I am!” They knew who Abraham was and they knew who I AM is, and since Jesus is before Abraham and called Himself I am, then He is God! This was an infuriating statement to the ruling Pharisees of the day. What was their response? Well, they wanted to kill him!
“At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple grounds.”
They were not able to touch Jesus yet because He is God and it was not His time to die for us yet. God decided when it was time for that, not men. He is I AM!
“..while we wait for the blessed hope–the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.”
Remember who Jesus is and what He did for us!
Grace and peace to you all!