Hi everybody, it’s Pastor Dave at Word By Mail. Good morning, hopefully, and thanks for joining us today for our daily devotion journal guide. If you’ve got an Alone With God journal, open it to a “Daily Journal” page. If you don’t have an Alone With God journal, open whatever journal you have. If you don’t use a journal, get your Bible. You’ve got to make time to sit with God and really focus. That’s what we’re trying to help you do, so grab your Bible at the very least.

If you want to find out what it is we’re doing here, go to wordbymail.com. Find out about the Bible teaching ministry of Word By Mail and our Alone With God daily journal guides. You go there and find out. I’m going to jump right in today.

We are going to John Chapter 8 – turn there in your Bible. Settle your heart, maybe pause this guide until you get settled, and pray that God would speak to you today.

We’re in John Chapter 8, and the verses we’re really going to focus on are verses 56-59. Let me just set the stage for you. Jesus is “in it” with the Jews. And actually, up in John 8:31, the Bible calls them people who believed in him. But we find out in this little spat that they try to have with Jesus that they are not true believers. They do not believe that Jesus IS WHO he says HE IS, that he EXISTS as WHO he EXISTS AS. And so, you can read that whole section, starting in verse 31 of John 8, and it’s good, and it’s pretty rough. Jesus is getting serious with the people who say that they believe in him but really don’t.

So, they end up saying, in verse 52, that Jesus is possessed by a demon. You can read that there. So, they’re going back and forth, back and forth, and it’s about Abraham. So, you can read it and I’d love for you to read it. And if you want to pause this, go ahead and read it. And then focus on verse 56.

And so, after this little argument or debate that Jesus is having with the people, in verse 56, Jesus says, 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced as he looked forward to my coming. He saw it and was glad.” 57 The people said, “You aren’t even fifty years old. How can you say you have seen Abraham?”

And then, verse 58 is really our key verse (I’m just trying to set the context stage for you). Verse 58 is our key verse. That’s what we’re focused on today. John 8:58 says, 58 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was even born, I am!” “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was . . . , I am!” This is such a big statement. And you know that the people understood exactly what Jesus was saying by verse 59. It says, 59 At that point they picked up stones to throw at him. But Jesus was hidden from them and left the Temple.

They were going to stone him for saying, “I AM!” For saying, “Before Abraham was born . . ., I AM!”

So, maybe you’ve heard of the seven I am statements from Jesus. Seven times, Jesus makes this claim in the Gospel of John that “I AM!” “I AM!” “I AM!”  And I’m going to just list them for you. If you want, you can write them down and, again, pause the guide and look them up.

The Seven “I AM” Statements
1). I AM the Bread of Life – I EXIST AS the Bread of Life – John 6:35
2). I AM the Light of the World – I EXIST AS the Light of the World – John 8:12
3). I AM the Door – I EXIST AS the Door – John 10:7
4). I AM the Good Shepherd – I EXIST AS the Good Shepherd – John 10:11
5). I AM the Resurrection and the Life – I EXIST AS the Resurrection and the Life – John 11:25
6). I AM the Way, the Truth, and the Life – I EXIST AS the Way, the Truth, and the Life – John 14:6
7). I AM the True Vine – I EXIST AS the True Vine (The Source of Life) John 15:1

These are the seven “I AM” statements. Let’s get to the source. Turn back to Exodus Chapter 3. Pause the recording if you need to. I want to focus on the “I AM” statement today. So, in your journal guide, your first step is to Meditate. And it says in your guide, “What is God’s Word saying? What are the spiritual principles here?” And so, I want to take you to the source. And then, I want to give you this opportunity to meditate on this truth that Jesus says, “I AM,” “I EXIST AS,” “I AM WHO I AM.”

That starts in Exodus 3, verse 14, when God is calling Moses to go to the Pharaoh and have the people of God set free from the Pharaoh in Egypt. And Moses is unsure. He’s protesting, honestly, about God choosing him to do this. And so, Moses asks God in verse 13, “If I go to the people and tell them the God of your ancestors sent me, they’ll ask ‘what is his name?’”

So, he’s asking, “God – what is your personal name? It’s your covenant name, then what should I tell them?”

Exodus 3:14 (NLT)
14 God replied to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. Say this to the people of Israel: I AM has sent me to you.”

And so, this is so much bigger than the English language allows us to understand. This “I AM” statement is where initially we got the tetragrammaton YHWH in Hebrew. It was the unspeakable covenant name of God. And it first became YAH-WEH. And then YAH-HO-VAH. And then, in the New Testament, the Greek version of YAH-SHUA. That’s Jesus. All of the names that come in the “I AM” that start with YAH- or YAH-HOVAH, or YAH-WEH, they all are “I EXIST AS” because that’s what this word means back in Exodus 3:14. When God says to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM” it’s “I EXIST AS” “I AM SELF-EXISTANT,” “SELF-SUFFICIENT.” “I AM ETERNAL AND SOVEREIGN.” “I AM.” “I EXIST.” This is so, so big.

That is Exodus 3:14. The verse I really want to get you to is back in John Chapter 8. Pause this if you need to and go back to John 8, verse 58. . . . “I tell you the truth, before Abraham was even born, I am!” “I AM!” Jesus says, “I AM the GOD WHO EXISTS.” “I AM that God who spoke to Moses from the burning bush in Exodus 3.” “I EXIST AS that GOD. The ONLY GOD. The ONLY ALL EXISTING GOD.” That’s WHO Jesus says he IS, and that’s who the Bible calls us to believe Jesus is. That’s who Jesus said we have to believe he is.

And so, in your journal, whether you have the Alone With God journal or a blank journal, just Meditate on that for a few minutes. Write down what is God’s Word saying? Jesus says, “I AM! I AM THAT EXISTING ONE!” What are the spiritual principles here? That’s your next question in the Alone With God journal. Take a minute – and spend a minute with that because it is big.

Next, in the Alone With God journal, it says Apply. And the instructions are “How does this apply to my life today, personally and specifically?” And really take a minute to apply this to your life personally. How does this apply that Jesus Christ is the I AM, the ALL EXISTING ONE, The SOVEREIGN ETERNAL GOD? How does that apply to your life today? And I promise you, it’s not theory. It’s not intellectual. It’s real, and it’s personal. Your Savior, if you’ve given your life to Christ as your Savior, he IS the I AM. The ALL EXISTING ONE. The SOVEREIGN EVER-EXISTING ETERNAL GOD. So, write how does that apply?

And then number three in your journal is Respond. “What action will I take today in response to this truth?” What does this mean to you? What does this cause you to do? What effect can this have on your faith, on your commitment to Jesus Christ and to follow him? Write in your journal how will I respond to this truth today?

And then, Pray. I’m going to pray for you, but in your journal, you write your prayer.

Let’s pray together.

Lord, Jesus, you are the GREAT I AM, Lord. You are the EVER-EXISTING ETERNAL SOVEREIGN GOD. You are the ONLY one who can say I AM THAT I AM! And Lord, you ARE all the things that you’ve said you ARE, Lord. You ARE, you ARE WHO YOU SAY YOU ARE, Lord. You ARE our Bread of Life. You EXIST AS the Light of the World, the Door. You ARE the Good Shepherd. You ARE – You EXIST as our Resurrection and our Life, Lord. You ARE the Way, You EXIST AS the Way, You ARE the Truth, You ARE our Life. And you ARE the Source of our Life. You EXIST AS the True Vine. Lord, Jesus, you ARE all these things, Lord. And we pray that they would more and more, daily impact us and that they would have a radical effect on our lives and on our circumstances today. In your mighty name, we pray all of this, Jesus. Amen.

Alright, guys. Great devotion today. Just finish up, would you? If you’re just listening to this, really consider spending some real alone time with God on this subject.

And then, go to wordbymail.com. Get the Word By Mail app. Sign up, if you haven’t already, for these daily devotions by text – they’ll come to you by text. In fact, you can just text the word DEVO and your name to (877) 790-WORD. (877) 790-9673.

Thanks for joining us today. Have an awesome day. Praise the Lord! Bye-bye.

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