Jesus once had a heated discussion with the Jews of His time because of His usage of “I am”. The Jews were upset and they took up stones to stone Him for making Himself equal with God. They thought He was blaspheming.
If you go back to Exodus 3:13-14, when God spoke to Moses from the burning bush and told him to go to Egypt to free His people, Moses asked God what His name was, God, replied, “I AM THAT I AM.”
“Before Abraham was, I am.” simply lets us know that Abraham was brought into being, but Jesus existed eternally.
Jesus used “I Am” in seven declarations of Himself:
1. I am the bread of life John 6:35. Jesus is our spiritual sustenance and He supports and maintains the life that He gives.
2. I am the light of the world John 8:12. Through Him, we gain spiritual understanding and His judgments are true because of His relationship with the Father.
3. I am the door John 10:9. And because He is, we have unlimited access to His Kingdom.
4. I am the good Shepherd John 10:11. He paid our entrance fee with His life.
5. I am the resurrection and the life John 11:25. Our eternal life is guaranteed; Christ is able of Himself to raise men from death to life.
6. I am the way, the truth, and the life John 14:6. He is the ONLY MEANS through which men can approach the Father.
7. I am the true vine John 15:1. And we are the branches of this Vine. I want to explore more of this metaphor later on.
Perhaps if the Jews of Jesus’s days had ears to hear (His Word) and eyes to see (His miracles/signs), then they wouldn’t have missed the significance of “I AM”.
57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?
58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.