March 16, 2019
Today we begin a series of studies titled “The I AM’s of Christ”
Share in your group what you most benefitted from Michael’s message on Sunday.
1. Jesus: “I Am”
Read John 8:31-59.
What was the main point Jesus was explaining to the Pharisees in answer to their question ‘Who do you think you are?’ John 8:53.
Discuss John 8:58.
• Who did Jesus say He was?
• Why did the Jews try to stone Him? See also John 5:16-18, Exodus 3:13-15, Leviticus 24:10-16. Consider the violence intended to the person in stoning them to death.
• Why did they not see who Jesus really was?
Consider the following…
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you’” (Exodus 3:14).
“The phrase translated “I am who I am” in Hebrew is ehyeh asher ehyeh. The word ehyeh is the first person common singular of the verb to be. It would be used in any number of normal situations: “I am watching the sheep,” “I am walking on the road,” or “I am his father.” However, when used as a stand-alone description, I AM is the ultimate statement of self-sufficiency, self-existence, and immediate presence. God’s existence is not contingent upon anyone else. His plans are not contingent upon any circumstances. He promises that He will be what He will be; that is, He will be the eternally constant God. He stands, ever-present and unchangeable, completely sufficient in Himself to do what He wills to do and to accomplish what He wills to accomplish.
When God identified Himself as I AM WHO I AM, He stated that, no matter when or where, He is there. It is similar to the New Testament expression in Revelation 1:8, “‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.’” This is true of Him for all time, but it would have been especially appropriate for a message in Moses’ day to a people in slavery and who could see no way out. I AM was promising to free them, and they could count on Him!
2. Jesus, “The Bread of Life”
Read John 6:1-69.
When Jesus told the people He was ‘The Bread of Life’ what was He wanting them to understand?
Discuss the difference between the physical and spiritual of what Jesus was saying and how people couldn’t see. John 6:26-29. Can we sometimes be the same?
Why do you think “many of Jesus disciples turned away and deserted Him’? John 6:66.
What is the spiritual implications of Jesus being ‘The Bread of Life’? Deut. 8:3, John 1:1.
Discuss what ways we as Christians can feed on Jesus ‘the Bread of Life’ for our spiritual sustenance.
See also one of the devil’s temptations. Matt 4:1-4.
3. Jesus “The Light of the World.”
Read John 8:12.
When Jesus told the people He was ‘The Light of the world’ what was He wanting them to understand?
What does Jesus promise here? What does this mean?
What do the following tell us? John 1:4-9, Matt. 4:16.
Discuss the parallels between physical light/darkness and spiritual light/darkness.
What/who causes and keeps people in spiritual darkness? Eg: 2 Corinthians 4:3-6, John 3:19-21. Can you think of others?
As ‘Children of Light’ discuss the following instructions as to how God wants us to live. Ephesians 5:8-14. 2 Cor. 6:14-7:1.
What is the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives? Eph. 5:15-20, John 16:12-16.
Discuss our responsibilities to those living in spiritual darkness. Matt. 5:14-16, Phil. 2:14-16.
Consider the following…
John 8:12 records, “When Jesus spoke again to the people, He said, ‘I am the Light of the World. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but have the light of life.’” The allegory used by the Lord in this verse speaks of the light of His Truth, the light of His Word, the light of eternal Life. Those who perceive the true Light will never walk in spiritual darkness.
We take a candle into a room to dispel the darkness. Likewise, the Light of Jesus Christ has to be taken into the darkness of sin that engulfs the hearts and lives of those who are not following Him. That’s the condition behind having this Light—that we follow Him. If we do not follow Him, we will not have this light, this truth, this eternal life.
Physical light is necessary for physical life. The earth would certainly change very rapidly if there were no longer any sunlight. A forest full of trees with very thick canopies of foliage high above has very little plant life on the ground except for moss or lichen, which needs little sunlight. Plants will never move away from the light—they are said to be positively phototropic, drawn to the light. In the same way, spiritual light is necessary for spiritual life, and this can be a good test of our standing in Christ. The believer will always tend toward spiritual things; he will always tend toward fellowship, prayer, the Word of God, and so on. The unbeliever always does the opposite (John 1:5; 3:19–20) because light exposes his evil, and he hates the light. Indeed, no man can come into the true spiritual light of Jesus Christ, unless he is enabled (John 6:37). ##