Saturday, May 7, 2011

Ministry of Jesus 1 – TEST

The Seven ‘I Am’ sayings – Section 4

‘I AM’ reveals character, integrity, and purpose. ‘I AM’ shows us God in eternity and how it relates to us. ‘I AM’ was first introduced in the Bible in Exodus 3:14. “And God said to Moses, I AM WHO I AM and WHAT I AM, and I WILL BE WHAT I WILL BE; and He said, You shall say this to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you!”. So when Jesus, in John 8:58, said, “I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, before Abraham was born, I AM.”, the Jews knew exactly what He was saying. ‘I AM’ says volumes. What does it say??

I AM the bread of life. John 6:35 says, “Jesus replied, I am the Bread of Life. He who comes to Me will never be hungry, and he who believes in and cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me will never thirst any more (at any time).” God satisfies our deepest needs.

I AM the light. John 8:12 says, “Once more Jesus addressed the crowd. He said, I am the Light of the world. He who follows Me will not be walking in the dark, but will have the Light which is Life.” God leads us, guides us, and directs us. We should not wander aimlessly in this life from failure to failure. He is our light.

I AM the door. John 10:7 says, “So Jesus said again, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, that I Myself am the Door for the sheep.” If you read the previous verses Jesus is telling how the watchman opens the door, and the sheep listen to his voice and obey it; and he calls his own sheep by name and brings leads them out. It goes on to say how the sheep know that voice so well that a voice of another they will not obey but will flee from a strangers voice. Hearing and knowing the voice of our Lord is everything to a Believer, without it, we can easily be led a strayed.

I AM the good shepherd. John 10:14 says,” I am the Good Shepherd; and I know and recognize My own, and My own know and recognize Me.” He is the GOOD shepherd. In verses 11 and 12 it says that the good shepherd risks and lays down His own life for the sheep, while a hireling will run when hard times come their way. It also speaks that when we are in ministry our job is to serve, not to be served.

I AM the Resurrection and the Life. John 11 talks of a story of Lazarus and Jesus says in verses 25 and 26, “Jesus said to her, I am [Myself] the Resurrection and the Life. Whoever believes in (adheres to, trusts in, and relies on) Me, although he may die, yet he shall live; And whoever continues to live and believes in (has faith in, cleaves to, and relies on) Me shall never [actually] die at all. Do you believe this?” John 5:24 goes on to say that whoever will listen, believe and trust and relies on the Lord will have eternal life and will not come into judgment but will pass over out of death into life.

I AM the way, the truth, and the life. John 14:6-7 says, “Jesus said to him, I am the Way and the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father except by through Me. If you had known Me [had learned to recognize Me], you would also have known My Father. From now on, you know Him and have seen Him.

I AM the vine. John 15:1 says,” I AM the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser.” In verse 2 of John 15, “Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.” Religion will say of this verse that any branch that does not bear fruit will be thrown away. This is not what this is saying. This branch is IN Christ. “Taketh” in the Greek is airo which means to raise up, elevate, or lift up. So we read it as thus, “Every branch IN ME that breareth not fruit he will “raise up, elevate, or lift up”. In a vineyard the branches are held up on a trellis. Once in awhile the branches will fall and when this happens the vines keeper will come along and put it back on the trellis. It is the same for us!! There are times we fall but God will come along and lift us back up. Good news!!

In conclusion, when God says, I AM, it is saying volumes to us. It says I lift you up when you fall, I give you life and life abundantly, I give you direction and guidance, I give you care, hope, and protection from all evil. I AM says, “I love you.”