Summary of passages: John 8:48-59: The Jews wonder if Jesus is a demon-possessed Samaritan. Jesus rebukes them again, saying he is the way to eternal life. Again, the Jews do not understand his words and say Abraham died and so did the prophets so how can he live. Jesus says he was in existence before Abraham. The Jews attempted to stone him, but he slipped away.
Exodus 3:12-15: This is the scene of God talking to Moses in the Burning Bush. God tells Moses to worship Him on this mountain. God says His name is “I am who I am”. I am has sent him. This is His name forever.
11a) John 8:51: Jesus tells all the secret: Accept the Word and receive eternal life!
b) John 8:56: Jesus says Abraham has acknowledged that Jesus is greater than he.
12a) Every Jew knew the name of God” Yahweh or “I am”. By Jesus calling himself this, he declares he is God.
b) Personal Question. My answer: All. Jesus is God and accepting him grants me access to the Father for all of eternity and guides my decisions and plans God has for my life.
Conclusions: Just a break down of Day 4 a bit more and reading the passage where “I am” came from.
End Notes: John 8:48-59: Jesus asks them to name one sin of his. They cannot. Instead, they just called him names! They had nothing left to accuse him of and with each word of Jesus’ more and more believe him instead of them!
Jesus tells all the secret: Accept the Word and receive eternal life! Again, blasphemy from anyone but God’s Son. Keep here mean continue and abide in it.
“See” is an intense word in Greek meaning long, steady vision.
Once more trying to trap Jesus, they try to get him to say something offensive by asking him again who he is.
Jesus again says he knows God and claims he is greater than Abraham who also acknowledged this fact.
Fifty was the age a priest retired. The Jews are merely saying you are too young to have known/seen Abraham.
Jesus responds with the 3rd “I Am” statement (John 8:24, 8:28). The ancient Greek phrase is ego emi, which is the same term used in to describe the Voice from the burning bush. Jesus used a clear divine title belonging to Yahweh alone (Exodus 3:13-14, Deuteronomy 32:39, Isaiah 43:10) and was interpreted as such by Jesus’ listeners (John 8:58-59). I AM was recognized by the Jews as a title of deity.
Finally, the religious leaders understood as demonstrated by the stones. They knew he was claiming to be God. They saw it as blasphemy. These stones would have been in the temple as it was still being constructed in some areas. Jesus escaped, probably mixing himself with the people in the temple but he could have vanished miraculously. We are not told.
Exodus 3:12-15: God asserts how he will be with Moses and the sign is the burning bush and how one day all will worship Him on Mount Sinai. Moses needed proof of his encounter with God so he asks him what he should tell the elders is his name. God says “I am who I am.” There is no equal. God is God. This is the name by which God wished to be known and worshipped in Israel. It’s the name that expresses his character as the dependable and faithful God who desires the full trust of his people.
This was not a new name for God. The people knew it. It’s recorded over 160 times in the book of Genesis. It’s a call back to the patriarchs.
History of the word Jehovah: In the English-speaking world, the pious Jews of later years did not want to pronounce the name of God out of reverence and thought it too holy to utter and feared violating Exodus 20:7 and Leviticus 24:16, so they left the vowels out of His name and simply said the word Lord (adonai) instead. If the vowels of the word adonai are put over the consonants for YHWH, you can get the name “Jehovah.” All this came about much later; in the days of the Bible, the name was pronounced Yah-weh or Yah-veh although the proper pronunciation today may be different.
Yahweh is the Hebrew name for God and is not Jehovah. It means “He is” or “He will be” and is the third-person form of the verb translated “I will be.” When God speaks of himself, He says “I am”. When we speak of him, we say “He is.”
I am. God has always existed and always been. He simply is. God is completely independent. He relies on nothing for life or existence (Isaiah 40:28-29; John 5:26). This is aseity (we talked about it in Lesson 7 Day 4), meaning God doesn’t need anybody or anything – life is in Himself.
God is eternal and unchanging. There is no past or future tense in the Divine Vocabulary.
God is “the becoming one”; God becomes whatever is lacking in our time of need. The name I Am invites us to fill in the blank to meet our need – when we are in darkness, Jesus says I am the light; when we are hungry, He says I am the bread of life, when we are defenseless, He says I am the Good Shepherd. God is the becoming one, becoming what we need.
God’s name is both an announcement and an introduction. It announces God’s presence, and invites any interested to know Him by experience, to taste and see that the Lord is good.
I Am: This is a divine title that Jesus took upon Himself often, clearly identifying Himself with the voice from the burning bush.
“Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I Am [He], you will die in your sins.” (John 8:24)
Then Jesus said to them, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I Am [He], and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things.” (John 8:28)
Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I Am.” (John 8:58)
Now I tell you before it comes, that when it does come to pass, you may believe that I Am (John 13:19)
Jesus therefore, knowing all things that would come upon Him, went forward and said to them, “Whom are you seeking?” They answered Him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I Am [He].” And Judas, who betrayed Him, also stood with them. Now when He said to them, “I am [He],” they drew back and fell to the ground. (John 18:4-6)
Interesting Trend in the Bible: The first word had to come to the people of God (Exodus 3:16) and then to the world (Exodus 3:18). Often God will not speak to the wider world until He speaks to His people and He has their attention. First the Jews, then the Gentiles.
This is My name forever: God refers to the name mentioned in the same verse, the Lord God (Yahweh Elohim). “Forever” emphasizes the eternal faithfulness of God to His covenant.