I love Jesus’, “I am,” statements in the book of John.
When someone says, “I am…,” it reveals something about their identity. About the core of their being. About what is most important to them and about them.
For example, when I say, “I am a Christian,” I’m making a big, bold statement that my identity in Christ is what’s most important to me.
So when Jesus says, “I am…,” we should pay close attention. He’s pulling back the curtain on his glorious character. He’s telling us something profoundly important – something we don’t want to miss.
With that in mind, let’s spend some time savoring Jesus’, “I am,” statements.
1. I Am The Bread of Life
I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst (John 6:35).
The original hearers of this, “I am,” statement of Jesus would have had two things in mind:
- They had just seen Jesus miraculously feed a massive, teeming, ravenous crowd using nothing but a few loaves and fishes.
- God had miraculously provided bread in the desert for the people of Israel.
You could say that had bread on the brain.
But here’s the thing:
Both the feeding of the crowd and the manna in the wilderness were intended to point to a greater reality.
Jesus tells them not to long for physical bread, even if that bread is provided by God himself. Rather, they are
What is this bread of life? It’s Jesus himself.
Just like physical bread satisfies our deepest hunger cravings, so Jesus satisfies the longings of our hearts. He is the one who “fills us”, our deepest joy and most satisfying pleasure.
Without Jesus, even the most sumptuous pleasures of the world are empty and unsatisfying. With Jesus, we can be content even in the midst of poverty.
Charles Spurgeon said:
I have heard of some good old woman in a cottage, who had nothing but a piece of bread and a little water. Lifting up her hands, she said as a blessing, “What! All this, and Christ too?”
The old woman in the cottage truly understood what it meant that Christ is the bread of life. He satisfied her even though she had nothing but a piece of bread and a little water.
2. I Am The Light Of The World
I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life (John 8:12).?
Jesus’, “I am,”
This is truly a profound, “I am,” statement by Jesus. Consider all the times that God gave light to his people.
In the very beginning, God said, “Let there be light.”
He led the people of Israel by a pillar of blazing fire.
After Moses beheld the glory of the Lord, his face was so bright that he had to wear a veil.
Scripture says that God dwells in “unapproachable light”.
And yet here, Jesus is putting himself in a different category altogether. He provides spiritual light for anyone who follows him.
Those who don’t know Christ walk in the darkness, stumbling into landmines of sin and destruction. They don’t walk in the path of peace and joy and righteousness. They do what is right in their own, sin-blinded eyes.
But we who know Christ have had the light of Christ shine in our hearts. God has opened our eyes to see behold the glory of Christ and we now walk in the good, well-lit paths of God.
Aren’t you glad that Jesus is the light of the world? Aren’t you grateful that even though you were once blind, now you can see?
3. I Am The Door Of The Sheep
Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep (John 10:7).
Time and again in the Old Testament, God calls himself the shepherd and his people sheep. God is the good, faithful shepherd, and he keeps vigilant, zealous watch over his sheep.
When Jesus says that he’s the door of the sheep, he’s making a startling claim about himself. He’s saying that the only way to be part of God’s people is through him.
There are not many paths or many doors to God. There is a single door to God, and that door is Jesus himself.
The glorious good news is that when we embrace Jesus as our joy and treasure, we enter through him into God’s people. And when we become part of God’s people, God himself becomes our shepherd.
Read that last sentence again. God. Is. Your. Shepherd. Isn’t that precious, sweet news? He is guiding you, keeping watch over you, caring for you, providing for you. You have entered into God’s people through the door of Jesus, and now you have the living God as your Shepherd.
You can say along with David, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.”
4. I Am The Good Shepherd
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep (John 10:11).
This is such a glorious, affection-stirring truth. Jesus is the door, and by entering through him, I become one of God’s treasured “sheep”. Jesus is also the good shepherd who cares for his sheep.
I desperately need a good shepherd to lead me, guide me, protect me, and keep me from wandering into sin. I need a shepherd to vigilantly watch over me as I walk through the Valley of Death.
And more than anything else, I need a shepherd who will sacrifice his life to save me from sins. A shepherd who will lay down his life for me in order to purchase me for his own.
Jesus is all of those things, and so much more.
Aren’t you grateful that Jesus is your shepherd? He cares about every detail of your life, no matter how mundane. Everything you experience must first pass through the loving hands of your shepherd.
John Piper says, “I might indeed have to lack many things in following the shepherd, but I will never lack anything that the shepherd thinks is good for me.”
Or as Psalm 84:11 puts it, “No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.”
Because Jesus is your good shepherd, you can be absolutely sure that he won’t withhold a single good thing from you. What sweet news that is.
5. I Am The Resurrection and The Life
I am the resurrection and
This is staggering.
Jesus’, “I am,” statement here goes far beyond simply promising eternal life to all who believe in him, though that’s certainly included.
When Jesus says that he is the resurrection and the life, he’s saying that explosive, resurrection power is found in him.
That he has mastery over death itself.
That all who believe in him will someday experience a bodily resurrection. Our eternal destiny is not as souls without bodies.
When Christ returns, we will receive new, glorious, imperishable resurrection bodies. Only Jesus Christ, the king of kings, has the power to make this happen.
It is Jesus who will make bring these words to pass:
For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:
“Death is swallowed up in
“O death, where is your victory?
O death, where is your sting?”
The sting of death is
sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:53-57).
Aren’t you overwhelmingly grateful that Jesus will give you a new, imperishable, immortal resurrection body? He truly is the resurrection and
6. I Am The Way, The Truth, and The Life
I am the way, and the truth, and
Jesus is gloriously inclusive and wonderfully exclusive.
Jesus invites everyone to come to the Father so that they might receive eternal life, experience the power of the resurrection, know God as their shepherd, and walk in the brilliant light that Jesus provides.
But Jesus also offers himself as the only way to experience these incredible realities. There are not many paths to God, not many roads up the divine mountain.
Jesus, and only Jesus, is the way, truth, and life.
Salvation runs exclusively through him, and he offers it freely to all. This makes Jesus infinitely worth of praise. He is God’s ONLY solution for our sin problem, and for that reason deserves all praise and honor and glory.
7. I Am The Vine
I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him,
Has there ever been a clearer statement about the life-giving power of Jesus and our absolute dependence on him? Just as a branch can’t survive if it’s not connected to the vine, so we can’t survive if we’re not connected to
Spiritual life courses through Jesus, and as long as we’re connected to Christ, his spiritual life also flows through us. Isn’t that an absolutely mind-boggling thought? Because we are in Christ, the life of Christ himself flows to us and through us. We truly do have access to the divine, world-changing power of Christ.
The opposite reality is also true, in that apart from Christ, we can do absolutely nothing of true spiritual value. It’s only in and through Jesus Christ that we can honor God.
The implication is that we absolutely must stay close to Christ. We must regularly draw near to him through prayer, Bible reading, fellowship with other believers, and the other spiritual disciplines he has given us.
Jesus is the true vine, and when we abide in him, we bear much fruit. If we neglect to abide in him, we’ll shrivel up spiritually.
Savor The “I Am” Statements of Jesus
Jesus’, “I am,” statements are not intended to be received as mere intellectual knowledge. Rather, they should motivate us to worship Jesus for who he is. They reveal his glorious character to us.
He is the bread that satisfies our deepest longings.
He is the light that shines on the path of righteousness.
He is the door into the people of God.
He is the good Shepherd who cares for the people of God.
He is our hope of a resurrection.
He is the only way to God.
He is the vine through which we experience the power of God.