BEFORE ABRAHAM WAS
In John 8 :58, Jesus said something extraordinary which astounded His listeners; ‘Before Abraham was, I Am’. This would have shocked them because He was claiming to have existed before Abraham lived on earth. The Jewish leaders and scholars could make no sense of that, how the man who stood before them could claim to have also been alive before the man who was the great father of their nation. Unless… He was claiming to be more than a man.
I AM WHO I AM
His wording was no mistake. He did not say ‘Before Abraham was, I was’. He said ‘I AM’. In fact He had already used the phrase ‘I am’ twice in this discourse, in John 8:24, and John 8:28 (the ‘He’ is not there in the Greek). If they hadn’t got it before I believe they would have heard it for sure the third time. And it angered them so much that they wanted to stone Him. Because His listeners would have known those two words as the title God used of Himself when He talked to Moses from the burning bush, ‘I AM who I AM’ (Exodus 3:14). That is, the One that just exists, the One that is, and always has been, and always will be. The eternal One who is all and holds all in His hands.
THE GREAT I AM
Jesus was claiming deity. He did it again in John 18: 5-6, when the soldiers came to arrest Him in the garden, and either consciously or sub -consciously, they knew the power in His words. When He said, ‘I AM’ (again, the ‘He’ is not there in the Greek), the soldiers fell back to the ground. God in human form allowed Himself to be taken by cruel human hands and led to His death, for our salvation.
Be in no doubt, the baby that shepherds ran to find, and kings knelt to worship, was and is the great I AM. The same God of the burning bush, who delivered His people from Egypt and parted the Red Sea, came in the form of a baby to Bethlehem. God the Son was not a lesser version of God the Father. He was, and is, God eternal. ‘I Am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End’ He declares from heaven (Revelation 1: 11). This is the One who deserves all our honour, all our praise, and our very lives in worship this Christmas. So, so much more than a baby in a manger.
Joy Margetts is a published author and blogger. Her books are works of Christian Historical fiction. Set in medieval Wales against the backdrop of Cistercian abbey life, they tell stories of faith, hope and God’s redemptive power. Her debut novel ‘The Healing‘ was published by Instant Apostle on 19 March 2021. Joy has also self- published a short novella, ‘The Beloved‘ as both a companion to ‘The Healing‘, and as an easy to read standalone story, which is available to buy on Amazon Kindle.
‘The Pilgrim‘, her second full length novel, was published by Instant Apostle on 22 July 2022
More information on Joy, and her books can be found here www.joymargetts.com