“Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”” (John 8:58, NKJV)
What was so important about this statement that provoked the crowd to take up stones to throw at Jesus? It all began back in John 6. We find there a bunch of Jews going after Jesus across the Sea of Galilee to Capernaum looking for him to feed them again (he had fed 5,000 the day before). As part of the conversation that took place, something interesting happened. Jesus drew a parallel between the manna their fathers ate in the Wilderness and Him as the bread that comes from heaven. He said, “The bread your fathers ate came from heaven but was not the true bread from heaven” “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.” (John 6:35, NKJV) You have seen me and still can’t believe who I am and that’s ok. It’s not for everyone to get it. You would have gotten it if you had God’s insight but you haven’t. Your fathers ate manna and died. Eat me and you will live forever. Yep, this is how it works; you eat my flesh and drink my blood and you live forever.” Many could not take it anymore and left (John 6:66). We know what Jesus meant but still learn that the message of the Cross is for everyone to hear but is not for everyone to get. (Matthew 7:14) Praise the Lord if you got it. The bread of life that came from heaven has fulfilled your spiritual emptiness and you will live forever in perfect fellowship with God. If you haven’t gotten it yet, find a Christian that can lead you to the bread of life, Jesus Christ.
Let us fast forward to John 8. After leaving the Sanhedrin all confused regarding whom He was, Jesus came back to the Temple and continued teaching there. A woman caught in adultery is brought to him as a test of his commitment to the Law. “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”” (John 8:7, NKJV) was his response. No one dared to throw a stone at the woman. No accusers left! Not even Jesus. Neglecting Christ will eventually bring judgment to you but He’s not waiting for you to get morally right before accepting Him as your Savior; he wants you now and just as you are (John 12:47). Accept his offer today.
Jesus then said, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.”” (John 8:12, NKJV) This statement ignited another barrage of questions and confusing statements leading to the biggest statement of them all. “Who’s your witness? Who’s your father? Why can’t we go where you going? Who are you?” Jesus answered every single question and some believed but many could not understand. He then said, “Only knowing the truth will give you the freedom you need. You are in spiritual bondage to sin and I am the only one that can free you from it. Abraham is not your father; God is not your father. The proof is in your deeds. The devil is your father and your deeds prove it”. This made the Jews mad. “You are a bastard and demon possessed! You say that anyone who keeps your word will never die but Abraham is dead and so are the prophets. Who do you think you are?”
“Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.” (John 8:58, NKJV)
Jesus’ statement takes us back to Exodus 3 where we find Moses having a conversation with God.
“Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?” And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ”” (Exodus 3:13–14, NKJV)
Jesus is I AM in human body. He is God. I would like for you to consider C.S. Lewis’ Trilemma as described in his book “Mere Christianity”. Either Jesus is a lunatic, a liar or Lord. Either Jesus was not God but mistakenly believed that He was. Or Jesus was not God and He knew it but He said it anyway or, Jesus is God. I choose to believe that Jesus is God and has always existed. What do you believe? Your concept of who Jesus is will change your idea of God and your outlook in life. Trust Him today; you will live in his company today, and forever.