Summary: Jesus illustrated a life of giving God glory, instructed men to follow His Words, and identified Himself as God.

The Great I-Am

John 8:48-59

I. Jesus Illustrated (48-50)

II. Jesus Instructed (51-55)

III. Jesus Identified (56-59)

Introduction: Jesus continued his dialog with the leaders of the Jews.

* They had tried to trap Him, confuse Him, and out-reason Him.

* Now they were down to insulting Him.

I. Jesus Illustrated (He gave God the glory)

48Then the Jews answered and said to Him, "Do we not say rightly that You are a Samaritan and have a demon?"

* This was a double insult. It was a question of Jesus’ real father.

* It is possible, and some consider it probable, that Joseph had said something about Jesus not being his real child.

* This is the first indication of rumors about Jesus heritage. Satan is at work.

* The second part of the insult is that He was guided by a demon.

49 Jesus answered, "I do not have a demon; but I honor My Father, and you dishonor Me.

* Jesus addressed the dishonoring statements.

* He denied having a demon.

* He stated avowed honor in his relationship with His Father.

* He also acknowledged the intended insult.

50 "And I do not seek My own glory; there is One who seeks and judges.

* Jesus is stating the difference in Him and His adversaries, and the importance of the differences.

* These men were always vying for attention and recognition.

* They were always concerned with how they looked in everyone else’s eyes.

* Jesus said, "I do not seek recognition for myself.

* "Because you do, it puts you in a negative light in the only One whose opinion matters."

* That is the results of not giving God the Glory.

* Jesus came to glorify God. He did in everything He did.

* John 12:27-28 - 27"Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ’Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. 28 "Father, glorify Your name." Then a voice came from heaven, saying, "I have both glorified it and will glorify it again."

* And in that, He gave us and example, illustrated by His very life.

* Romans 15:5-6 - Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, 6 that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

* Does your life follow His example? Does your life illustrate glory to God?

II. Jesus’ Instructed (He said, “My Words bring life.”)

51 "Most assuredly, I say to you, if anyone keeps My word he shall never see death."

* Jesus used the most powerful words available to emphasize it. "Most assuredly, I say to you..."

* Sometimes translated, "Verily, verily", literally "Amen, Amen."

* Even these people had hope, but hope was conditional.

* It depended upon them believing and receiving the Words of Jesus Christ.

* Jesus said if they believe His word, they would not see death.

* John 5:24 - "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.

* We who believe do not experience death (separation from God).

* Our souls and spirits simply move from our bodies to be in God’s presence.

* Jesus had said that what appears to be death in the believer is really a step into full life.

* The Apostle Paul stated it this way, "to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord." 2 Corinthians 5:8

52 Then the Jews said to Him, "Now we know that You have a demon! Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and You say, ’If anyone keeps My word he shall never taste death.’ 53 "Are You greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? And the prophets are dead. Who do You make Yourself out to be?"

* The Jewish leaders believed they had found an opening, a crack in Jesus’ logic.

* Jesus was claiming to be more important than the dead prophets, including Abraham.

* They recognized the meaning of Jesus’ claim, but did not believe Him.

* He was either telling the truth or was a lunatic. He claimed His words gave life.

* Abraham, their greatest patriarch, was dead. Abraham’s words or faith did not keep him from dying.

* Same was true with the greatest prophets, including Isaiah. They all died.

* Yet Jesus had claimed His Words were different, more powerful.

* Jesus’ word could keep you from tasting death.

54 Jesus answered, "If I honor Myself, My honor is nothing. It is My Father who honors Me, of whom you say that He is your God.

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