Summary: Jesus made radical claims about himself
What did He say? John 8:58
Radical: extreme or drastic; especially in regards to what has been accepted or tradition
ἐγώ εἰμι: absolute, timeless existence; I am
Jesus said He is:
1. The bread of life John 6:35
He is our Sustenance
2. The light of the world John 8:12
He is our Guide
3. The door John 10:9
He is our Access
4. The good shepherd John 10:11
He is our Protector
5. The resurrection and the life John 11:25
He is our Strength
6. The way, the truth, the life John 14:6
He is our Everything
7. The true vine. John 15:1
He is our Source
It’s amazing how little people who call themselves Christ-followers know about the sayings and teachings of Jesus. And because they don’t have any idea what Jesus said, they don’t know really who Jesus is.
You really can’t know who Jesus is unless you know what He said about Himself. What someone says about themselves reveals a whole lot. Example? And Jesus made some incredibly radical statements about Himself that most people don’t know He made. Radical: extreme or drastic; especially in regards to what has been accepted or tradition Examples?
Turn to John 8:58. Continue our series entitled, Vintage Jesus. We’re taking a hard look at the person, the work, and the teachings of Jesus. Tucked away in the book of John are seven radical sayings that Jesus said about Himself that define who He is. And they all begin with the phrase, “I am” (write on chart)
That’s an interesting phrase, I am. Look at John 8:58 “Jesus said to them, “I assure you: Before Abraham was, I am.” The Greek is, ἐγώ εἰμι: absolute, timeless existence; I am Abraham existed in time, but Jesus exists outside of time.
You and I exist in time. But Jesus exists outside of time. Jesus is pointing to His eternal, timeless nature as God. Whatever moment in history you identify, Jesus was present. Whatever the future holds, Jesus is present.
Seven times in the book of John , Jesus begins a claim about Himself with the phrase: I am THE (chart)
The is very exclusive, isn’t it? If you want to identify one, sole, solitary something, you say THE. “That is THE president.” If you want to communicate that there are multiple options, you say, “That is a president.” I don’t say I am A husband of Sue; I am THE husband of Sue.
Put these together, the I AM, and the THE, and you see that Jesus is claiming to be exclusive and constant. (on chart) That He is claiming to be the exclusive and constant and eternal of whatever follows that introductory phrase.
Ok, you ready to dig in?
Jesus said He is:
1. The bread of life John 6:35 “I am the bread of life.”
In Jesus’ day, when people traveled, they traveled by foot, right? No trains, planes or automobiles. So if you were traveling to see your grandparents 15 miles away, you walked. There were no fastfood restaurants; no 7/11s to stop and get something to eat. You carried your food with you. And bread is what you carried. It sustained you on your journey. If you don’t have bread, if you don’t have food, you grow weak and eventually die. Food sustains us, doesn’t it? When Jesus says He is the bread of life, He means that He is our Sustenance.
We look to so many things, so many people to sustain us in life, don’t we? We look to our money to sustain us; we look to our family to sustain us; we look to our friends to sustain us. But what if they were all taken away? Who would you rely on to sustain you? Hopefully Jesus. And if you’d rely on Him then, why not rely on Him now? This day? Every day?
As we travel through life, Jesus says that everything else in life is temporary and can be lost, but He is the One who is always there and always sustains.
2. The light of the world John 8:12 “I am the light of the world.”
What does light do? It illuminates, it reveals, it guides. In Jesus day, there were no electric lights. There was the light of the sun and moon, or the light of a fire or candle. When it was dark, you needed a light to show you where to walk and how to go.
People today are so confused about how to go; how to live. Confusion about how to date, confusion about who to marry, confusion about how to stay married, confusion about how to parent, confusion about how to live.
And there are so many competing voices calling out for us, promising to show us the way. Politicians claim to know the way. Educators claim to know the way. Entertainment industry claims to know the way.