John 8:58 ¶ Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM.”
I learned about the error of the Jehovah Witness doctrines out in the streets. Actually it was at a Jehovah Witness Convention in Fresno, California where a number of my street preacher buddies and I stumbled into the JW conference. The leader of our team that night managed to get hold of the microphone on the stage in front of about 10,000 Jehovah Witnesses. His text was today’s verse, “Before Abraham was, I am.” That pretty much says it all. You have to do some fancy doctrinal foot work and distortion to get around that statement. Jesus was making a blatant claim to deity. He is the eternal Son of God. Needless to say, the leaders of the conference were not very happy. You could say they were quite angry with all of us as we were tossed out of the building. Their stern objection to Christ’s claim to deity seemed strangely similar to the reaction the religious leaders showed toward Jesus. With that much animosity, I knew what Christ said was true. Here is how Matthew Henry describes this passage.
“I am, is the name of God (Exod. iii. 14); it denotes his self-existence; he does not say, I was, but I am, for he is the first and the last, immutably the same (Rev. i. 8); thus he was not only before Abraham, but before all worlds, Jn.1:1; Prov. viii. 23. Secondly, As Mediator. He was the appointed Messiah, long before Abraham; the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world (Rev. xiii. 8), the channel of conveyance of light, life, and love from God to man. This supposes his divine nature, that he is the same in himself from eternity (Heb. xiii. 8), and that he is the same to man ever since the fall; he was made of God wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption, to Adam, and Abel, and Enoch, and Noah, and Shem, and all the patriarchs that lived and died by faith in him before Abraham was born. Abraham was the root of the Jewish nation, the rock out of which they were hewn. If Christ was before Abraham, his doctrine and religion were no novelty, but were, in the substance of them, prior to Judaism, and ought to take place of it.”
This great ‘I am’ is with you today. He is not only eternal, He is all powerful. He has each of us safely in His hand. No matter what we face, ‘I am’ will be with you every step of the way.