I AM – Part 3

John Plunkett
August 19, 2012

This is Part 3 of the series in which we have been discussing Jesus’ frequent use of the term “I AM,” especially where we find it in the books written by the apostle John. 

Let us recap on what we have read so far.  Going through the various headings and sub-topics that Jesus has given us.  He said:

- I AM the one and only Messiah 
- I AM come in My Father’s name
- I AM come from my Father
- I AM come from above
- I AM come from heaven
- I AM come into this world 
- I AM the One who bears witness of myself. 
- I AM the King 
- I AM that I AM

A couple of Sabbaths ago, when Trish and I were in Portland, Oregon, we attended services with Rick Railston of the Pacific Church of God.  We enjoyed a really nice Sabbath with him and his wife, Dorothy. Rick gave a sermon on the subject of “The Simplicity that is in Christ,” his idea stemming, of course, from II Corinthians 11:3.

That sermon started me thinking about the subject that we have been talking about.  I hope you will agree that, although we are delving very deeply into these “I AM” scriptures, we are not going off on any tangents and everything we go through is solidly grounded in God’s Holy Word, in the faith once delivered (Jude 3), and in the simplicity that is in Jesus Christ.  I do not want it to be in any way complicated at all.

With this in mind, let us continue with our next section – another two-part section.  The two-part heading is: 

i)  I AM the Door of the Sheep fold
ii) I AM the Shepherd

John 10:1:
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that enters not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.

In the verses coming right up, we will see that Jesus is the Door.  Everyone that wishes to enter God’s "sheepfold" must do so through the Door – Jesus Christ.

Verse 2:  But he that enters in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.

What shepherd is being symbolically spoken of here?  Is it Jesus Himself?  Primarily, yes.  But only Jesus Himself?  Or can we rightly apply some of this to His "sub-shepherds" or "under-shepherds" – His ministers.  Perhaps it can apply to both.

Verse 3:  To him the porter opens; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out.

A couple of questions come to mind here. First of all, who and what is "the porter"?  The King James version gives a poor translation of the Greek word.  In our day and age a porter is a person at an airport or rail station who might help you with your baggage. The English word in this case is derived from the French verb “porter” which means "to carry." 

Back when the King James version translators wrote this, the word "porter" meant "gate-keeper" or "door-keeper."  The English word "porter" in that case is derived from the French noun “porte,” which means "gate" or "door."

The original Greek noun used in the Bible is “thuroros” and it means "the keeper of the door."  "Thuroros" is made up of two Greek words “Thura” and “Ouros.”  "Thura" means "door" or "gate" and "ouros" means "watcher."  And so, we come up with a door-watcher or a gate-keeper. 

Who does this porter, door-watcher or gate-keeper symbolize?  It could possibly indicate an angel, because the word ‘watcher’ is used in Daniel:

Daniel 4:
13:  I saw in the visions of my head upon my bed, and, behold, a watcher and an holy one came down from heaven...
Verse17:  This matter is by the decree of the watchers, and the demand by the word of the holy ones: to the intent that the living may know that the most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomsoever He will, and sets up over it the basest of men...
Verse 23:  And whereas the king saw a watcher and an holy one coming down from heaven...

Hence, there is a possibility that this gate-keeper or door-watcher might symbolize one or more angels.

Another question:  Whose voice do the sheep hear?  Do they hear the gate-keeper’s voice, the shepherd’s voice, or perhaps both?  As implied by the following verses (back in John 10), it is most likely referring to the shepherd's voice:

John 10:
2:  But he that enters in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 
3:  To him the porter opens; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out.

As we will see, it is the shepherd who owns the sheep –  not the gate-keeper.

Verse 4:  And when he puts forth his own sheep, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.

There are a couple of points to notice here.  Firstly, the shepherd is the central character; not the gate-keeper.  The second thing to notice is that the shepherd does not drive the sheep before Him.  Rather, he leads them.  He goes before them; and because they know and trust Him, they willingly follow Him. This is a good example of Jesus Christ; but it is also a good point for Jesus' "under-shepherds" His ministers to keep this in mind and to emulate.

Verse 5:  And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.

Jesus gives a strong indication here that His Spirit-led sheep will naturally trust in those who are preaching "the faith once delivered" (Jude 3) preaching straight from the Word of God. He gives a strong indication that it is very right for all of us to reject unbiblical twists, add-ons and “new truth," the likes of which many have been baffled with in the past.

At this particular time when Jesus was speaking these words, some Pharisees were among His audience.  Those Pharisees may have been counted among the strangers, thieves, robbers and false shepherds that Jesus was symbolically picturing here.

A couple of weeks ago, we read a prophecy in John 5 in which Jesus prophesied to another group of belligerent Jews that they would not follow Him; but that later on they would willingly follow false messiahs false shepherds.  These belligerent Jews and Pharisees were not to be counted amongst Jesus' "own sheep." 

Verse 6:  This parable spoke Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which He spoke unto them.

The majority of His audience were unable to comprehend His symbolism here.  So now He made this one point very, very clear in another “I AM" scripture:

Verse 7: Then said Jesus unto them again, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, 'I am the door of the sheep.'"

He could not get any clearer than that.  He says “I AM the door of the sheep.”  This “I AM” statement is very interesting in that Jesus is symbolically both the Door of the sheep-fold and the primary Shepherd.  We will see more on this as we go along.

Verse 8:  All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them.

Although Jesus used the word “all,” He was not referring to His true and faithful prophets such as John the Baptist, Elijah and Moses.  He was referring to the abundance of false shepherds.  Notice that "His own sheep" do not hear those thieves and robbers.

Verse 9:  I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.

Jesus repeats this "I AM" statement for emphasis.  He was the Door of the spiritual-sheep fold at that time; and He still is the Door of the spiritual sheep-fold today.  Jesus tells us in John 6:44 that a person must be called or "drawn" to Jesus Christ by God the Father.  Yes, the Father has to do the "drawing"; but those drawn must enter God’s spiritual sheep-fold through the Door; and that Door is Jesus Christ.

An interesting phrase in verse 9 is “shall go in and out, and find pasture.”  This does not mean that we are free to go in and out of God’s church.  Of course not!  We must not stray away from God’s true church. We must not be seeking pasture outside of the greater Church of God.  However other scriptures strongly support the concept that it possibly does mean that Jesus’ spiritual sheep are given the freedom of preference for certain preachers, pastors, and even for certain branches of God’s true church.  I believe that we are given the freedom to move from one Church of God group to another, as necessary, as long as we stay within God’s true church; also as long as our access is via Jesus, the Door.  Again, there are other scriptures that support this concept.  But we should not digress.  We are still in John chapter 10, still under the same heading; and we come to yet another “I AM” scripture:

Verse 10:  The thief comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

We briefly touched on this verse earlier when we were going through the “I AM Come" grouping; but Jesus repeats it here.  He says that spiritual thieves and false shepherds are come to steal, to destroy and to administer spiritual death.  But the true Shepherd comes for the very opposite purpose.  He comes to give abundant, joyful physical life now, based on God’s laws and way of life; and also eternal life in the Kingdom of God.  I am reminded of an article that Herbert W. Armstrong wrote many years ago, entitled “This is the Life – Real Abundant Living.”

Verse 11:  I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep.

This verse – yes, another “I AM” verse – removes any and all doubt that Jesus is the primary Shepherd of this section of scripture.  He is the good Shepherd as well as the Door to sheep-fold.  Jesus is our spiritual "Shepherd Number One."  He is "the great Shepherd" and "the chief Shepherd" (Hebrews 13:20; I Peter 5:4).  We know, of course, that He also has lesser "assistant shepherds" serving under Him (Jeremiah 23:4; 33:12).  Many scriptural warning tell us that those positions are never to be taken advantage of in improper ways and that the responsibilities of those positions are never to be taken lightly.

Verse 12:  But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep, and flees: and the wolf catches them, and scatters the sheep. 
The hireling flees, because he is an hireling, and cares not for the sheep.

In this word picture, referring back to the verses that we have just read, Jesus, the true Shepherd is the caring Owner of the sheep, whereas the hireling shepherd has nothing to gain from caring for them.  Perhaps the hireling shepherds of that time and place were paid by the hour rather than by the success and care in looking after the sheep.  Whether or not they know it, they are working on behalf of the wolf which, of course, symbolizes Satan the devil. 

It is interesting to apply these terms to today’s false ministers. God knows who they are. Some false ministers are only in it for the paycheque.  Some are only in it for the exalted, respected position of being called a minister. Do they really care about the physical and spiritual welfare of the sub-flocks they have been given charge of?  I am not their judge.  God the Father and Jesus Christ are.

Verse 14:  I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.

Jesus repeats that He is the good Shepherd, that He knows His sheep, and that they know Him. Yes, His sheep. Remember what He said back in verse 12: He owns them.  We are the sheep of His tiny flock.

Now, jumping all the way down to verse 36:

36:  Say you of Him, whom the Father has sanctified, and sent into the world, "You blaspheme," because I said, "I am the Son of God"?

When did Jesus say that He was the Son of God?  Let’s go back to chapter where Jesus told this very thing to a man who He had recently healed of blindness:

John 9:
35:  Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when He had found him, He said unto him, "Do you believe on the Son of God?"
36:  He answered and said, "Who is He, Lord, that I might believe on Him?"
37:  And Jesus said unto him, "You have both seen Him, and it is He that talks with you"...
Verse 40:  And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words...

Shortly after this, Jesus repeatedly referred to God as His Father.  He publicly said this without hesitation to a group of unbelieving Jews.

John 10:
22:  And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter.
23:  And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.
24: Then came the Jews round about Him, and said unto Him, "How long do you make us to doubt?  If you be the Christ, tell us plainly."
25:  Jesus answered them, "I told you, and you believed not: the works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness of me"...
Verse 29:  "My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand.
30:  "I and my Father are one."
Verse 32:  Jesus answered them, "Many good works have I shewed you from my Father..."

By saying that God was His Father, Jesus was logically implying that He (Jesus) was the Son of God the Father. Logically: "God is My Father and I am the Son of My Father; therefore I am the Son of God."

I AM Glad

Finally we break out of John 10 and move on to John 11.  Here, we will skip back and forth through the account of the raising of Lazarus. First, I want to jump right into the middle of the account – to its primary “I AM” verse – verse 15.  Jesus speaking:

John 11:15:
"And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent you may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him."

So here we read of Jesus, somewhere in Jerusalem with His disciples, and He said: “I AM glad."  Why was He glad?  He was glad that He was not physically present at the bedside and death of Lazarus. Why was He glad?  Let us look at what happened and we will get to the answer to this question:

Verse 6:  When He (Jesus) had heard therefore that he (Lazarus) was sick, He abode two days still in the same place where He was... 
Verse 17:  Then when Jesus came, He found that He
(Lazarus) had lain in the grave four days already.

So we see that Jesus purposely deferred travelling to Bethany, which was a very easy walk from where He was in Jerusalem.  It was only about two miles.  They didn't have to walk many miles to get there.  But He purposely deferred doing so. He purposely avoided healing Lazarus because, He said, He and His Father had a much greater purpose in wanting Lazarus to die a temporary physical death.

John 11:
3: Therefore his sisters sent unto Him
(Jesus), saying, "Lord, behold, he whom you love is sick." 
4:  When Jesus heard that, He said, "This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby."

A couple of minutes ago, I used the words "temporary physical death."  I  used that term because Lazarus’ death would have been permanent if Jesus and His Father would not have raised him from the dead.  It is very likely that they – Jesus and His Father – actually brought this fatal sickness upon Lazarus. 

It appears that Mary, Martha and Lazarus were long-time friends of Jesus. However, their level of faith was still somewhat limited.  Their level of belief in what Jesus was capable of was limited:

Verse 21:  Then said Martha unto Jesus, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother had not died."

Now let’s see what Mary said.  From the account in Luke 10, we tend to think of Mary as being the more spiritually-minded sister; but here she said exactly the same thing as Martha:

Verse 32"  Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw Him, she fell down at His feet, saying unto Him, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother had not died."

Thinking back to Jesus’ words in verse 15, He was glad that He was not there at the time of Lazarus’ death.  Again, why was He glad?  Please be patient and we will see.

The Greek word for “glad” is "chairo."  This Greek word means much more than just "glad" in our modern English usage.  In our modern usage, the word "glad" is a somewhat bland term for happiness.  The Greek word means to rejoice exceedingly!  Jesus rejoiced exceedingly that He was not present at Lazarus' bedside. 

Now, to accentuate our vision of the extent of Jesus' gladness and rejoicing, let us look at the very converse idea of Jesus’ gladness that took place during the period of this great event.  From this, we will get some better idea of why He had been so glad:

Verse 33:  When Jesus therefore saw her (Mary) weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, He groaned in the Spirit, and was troubled,

He groaned in the Spirit and was troubled.  Was He glad?  No!

Verse 34:  And said, "Where have you laid him?  They said unto Him, "Lord, come and see." 
35:  Jesus wept.

Is that glad?  No! 

Verse 36:  Then said the Jews, "Behold how He loved him!"  
37:  And some of them said, "Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died?" 
38:  Jesus therefore again groaning in Himself came to the grave.  It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it.

As He approached the grave, overhearing their conversation, He was groaning within Himself.  Was that glad?  No! 

So what happened to Jesus’ gladness
– His exceeding joy?  He groaned in the Spirit.  He groaned within Himself.  He was troubled.  He even wept!  

Why?  Was He sad because His beloved friend Lazarus was dead?  No.  Again, it is highly probable that Jesus and His Father brought about Lazarus’ death; and Jesus knew very well what He was about to do in a few minutes time. 

Why then did Jesus groan and weep?  Why was He so troubled?  Probably it was because of the lack of understanding and the lack of faith that His loved ones exhibited here – yes, even those really close to Him, like Mary and Martha. 

We all know what happened then.  Jesus had the stone removed from the mouth of Lazarus’ grave, and He called him forth from physical death back to human life.  That was an incredible, wonderful, astonishing thing that He and His Father did.  No doubt, as a result of this, the faith of Mary, Martha
– yes and of Lazarus himself too, of course – was greatly increased by this huge miracle.  Also, the faith of a goodly number of their Jewish friends were initially sparked and strengthened.  It appears from verse 19 that there may have been quite a lot of them:

Verse 19:  And many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother...
Verse 45: Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on Him.

What was the bottom line?  Why was Jesus glad that He was not at Lazarus’ death-bed-side?  What was Jesus’ goal in deferring travelling the short distance from Jerusalem to Bethany?  The simple answer is: Glorification of His Father and of Himself, stemming from the significant increase in the faith and belief of His disciples, His friends and their Jewish friends and neighbours:

Verse 4:  When Jesus heard that, He said, "This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby."

So just how did this glorification come about?  It came about through a greatly increased level of belief and faith, following the relatively weak level of faith that Jesus previously noted and lamented amongst His friends.

Verse 15:  "And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, to the intent you may believe; nevertheless let us go unto him...
Verse 25:  Jesus said unto her
(Martha), "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believes in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: 
And whosoever lives and believes in me shall never die.  Believe you this?"

Can we see how much Jesus is interested in our belief?  He and His Father are glorified by faith and belief.  They were then and they are now.  Continuing: 

Verse 27:  She said unto Him, "Yes, Lord: I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world"... 
Verse 40:  Jesus said unto her, "Said I not unto you, that, if you would believe, you should see the glory of God?... 
Verse 42:  "And I knew that you hear me always: but because of the people which stand by I said it, that they may believe that you have sent me."

This appears to have been the whole reason for this astonishing miracle that Jesus and His Father performed.

Verse 45:  Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on Him.

They are interested in our belief.  More than just interested, they are, I believe, glad, excited, happy, rejoicing exceedingly when we believe – when we have faith. Of course, They are the Ones who actually gives us that faith! We cannot work it up of ourselves.  But they give it to us and we have to exercise it.  They are really happy and they are glorified when we have, use and exercise that faith.  So belief and faith lead to the glorification of God the Father and Jesus Christ.

What about Jesus’ enemies?  Was their belief and faith increased?  Did they believe on Him, as they should have done, after witnessing or hearing about this astounding miracle?  Were they convinced?  Did they repent of their criticisms of Jesus?  You know the answer to these questions.  Of course they did not:

Verse 46:  But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done. 
47:  Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, "What do we?  For this man does many miracles. 
48:  "If we let Him thus alone, all men will believe on Him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation."

To close off this section on Jesus' words, "I AM glad," this phrase in John 11:15 reminds me of a well-known anthem composed in 1902 by Sir Hubert Parry entitled “I was glad” based on Psalm 122, which begins:

Psalms 122:1:
I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.

This anthem is traditionally sung at all of the British coronations and other major royal events in the lives of British Royalty. 

We could go on and on about the subject of gladness. The King James Version of the Bible contains 148 appearances of the words "glad," "gladness" and other derived words.  We want "gladness" to be a major theme at our Feast of Tabernacles observance this year at Seaside, Oregon, where we plan to concentrate on "accentuating the positive."  We hope and pray that all of you will have a very "glad" Feast, wherever you will be attending.

Where I AM:  Jesus' Location

We will now go back to John chapter 9, where we will read about Jesus talking about "where I AM."

First of all, where was Jesus during His human sojourn?

John 9:5:
As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.

Of course, as a human being, Jesus was in the world.  He was born in Bethlehem.  He spent a short time in Egypt with His parents when He was a baby. The greater part of his boyhood was in Nazareth.  He attended His own Feasts every year at Jerusalem.  He spent His later adult life with His disciples in many different places, including Samaria, Galilee, Capernaum, and many other places as He went about doing His work of preaching the gospel and healing the people.  For His last Passover He was back in Jerusalem with His disciples and here's what He said:

John 13:33:
Little children, yet a little while I am with you.  You shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, 'Where I go, you cannot come'; so now I say to you.

At the time He said this, He only had a short time left to be with His disciples. We will come back to this verse again.  But for now, let me ask another question about Jesus’ location: Where is He now?”  To answer this question I would like to go through a trilogy of “I AM” verses:

John 12:26:
If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be...

When Jesus said these words to His disciples, His last Passover was rapidly drawing nigh.  His time on earth as a human being was running out.  He said: “Where I am, there shall also my servant be.”  At that time, His disciples were His first New Testament servants.  He told them that, if they wanted to continue to serve Him, they must follow Him; and if they did follow Him, they could be where He is.  

We know that, after a few initial "hiccups," all but one of those disciples did follow Him.  After His death and resurrection, they continued to do His work.  They continued to preach His gospel message.  Many or even most of them followed His example right into persecution and martyrdom.  Now, on to the second verse of our trilogy:

John 17:24:
Father, I will that they also, whom you have given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which you have given me: for you loved me before the foundation of the world.

Here, very shortly before His arrest and His death, Jesus was asking His Father to enable the disciples to be with Him where He would be, and for them to behold His glory.  There are a lot of people that get the wrong end of the stick here.  Was He saying that they would follow Him into heaven to be with Him there?  Of course not; we all know that!  The very next “I AM” verse – the third of our trilogy – a repeat of John 13:33 – gives us the clear answer on this:

John 13:33:
Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.

He knew that He was soon to die and that, soon afterwards, He would be resurrected.  he knew that He would then make a brief visit to His Father’s Throne in heaven to fulfil the symbolisms of the Wave Sheaf Offering and the Day of Atonement offerings.  He knew that He would then come back to earth to be with His friends for forty days.  He knew that then He was to go back to heaven again and remain there –  with one or two possible exceptions, including coming back to personally teach the apostle Paul (I Corinthians 15:8).  Other than that, He was going to remain in heaven until His return to earth at the fulfillment of the symbolism of the Feast of Trumpets. We can be sure that the disciples were not permitted to go to Heaven to be with Jesus:

John 3:13:
And no man has ascended up to heaven, but He that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.

So when would the disciples be permitted to be with Jesus?  And where?

John 14:3:
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

Jesus is in Heaven right now, preparing places for His disciples; and for you and me too!  He promises that He is going to come again at the time of the resurrection of His disciples at the time of their – and our – resurrection.  This will be at the time of Jesus' "official" second coming.  Only then will the disciples be with Him again.  And again, where will that be?  It will be where Jesus will be.  And where will Jesus be?  He will be here on earth.  Please note that, in order for Jesus to receive His disciples to Himself, He will need to come again to the earth.  We will all be reunited and we will meet Him in the air.  From then on, we will be with Him for ever (Matthew 24:31: I Thessalonians 4:17). 

I want you to know, without a doubt, that our promised reward is not to be in heaven; and that Jesus will come again to earth and we are going to be with Him here.  This is how He will come again:

Acts 1:
9:  And when He had spoken these things, while they beheld, He was taken up; and a cloud received Him out of their sight.
10:  And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
11:  Which also said, "You men of Galilee, why stand you gazing up into heaven?  This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as you have seen him go into heaven.
12:  Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a Sabbath Day’s journey.

Jesus wants us to know exactly where He left from, and exactly where He was going to come back to. This is backed up in Zechariah's prophecy:

Zechariah 14:4:
And His feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.

Many more scriptures back this up and prove it, but we don’t want to stray too far from our sub-topic of Jesus’ location.  This one verse pinpoints the location of Christ's return.  In just one month’s time on the Feast of Trumpets, we will be celebrating this future event and reading more about it.

Let us go back to John chapter 14, and expand on our sub-topic with a "sub-sub-topic":

I AM in my Father

We have asked and answered the questions, "Where was Jesus as a human being?" and "Where is He now?"   But there is even more to it than these.  We learned way back in Part One of this study that Jesus came to earth from His Father in Heaven; but let us read again what He said once He was here on earth:

John 14:
10:  Believe you not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me?  The words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwells in me, He does the works.
11:  Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake...
Verse 20:  At that day you shall know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.

The magnitude of this concept is almost unbelievable for any human being – even with the aid of God's Spirit – to comprehend the huge and vast extent of Jesus’ words in these three verses.  The details are beyond the scope of this sermon; but the bottom line is that Jesus was in His Father – both then and now.  Humanly, we cannot fully understand this.  

As well as Jesus being in His Father, the Father also was – and is – in Jesus.  And even more astounding and astonishing is that God’s people – yes, you and me – we can be in Them and They in us.  This is such a huge, huge concept that it is hard for us, as human beings, to fully understand such a wonderful concept.  One day we will understand it even more.

The next sub-topic is another one in two parts:

i)  I AM the way and the truth, and the life
ii) I AM the resurrection and the life

John 14:
4:  "And where I go you know, and the way you know."
5:  Thomas said unto Him, "Lord, we know not where you go; and how can we know the way?"
6:  Jesus said unto him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father, but by me."

By the way, the last phrase in verse 6 links us right back to one of the points of John 10 where we began today – that our access to God the Father must be via the Door via Jesus.  But let us not digress from the sub-topic in hand.

When we went through the account of the raising of Lazarus in John chapter 11, I purposely skipped briefly over another “I AM” verse – one that solidly backs up what Jesus said here.  Here it is again:

John 11:25:
Jesus said to her
(Martha), "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believes in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live."

The raising of Lazarus was clear proof of these two statements – that Jesus and His Father possess total control over life and death. They possess total control over our human health too.  

Summary of Part 3

Let us just summarize what we have learned today.  Jesus tells us:

- I AM the Door of the sheep-fold
- I AM the Shepherd
- I AM the Son of God 
- I AM glad
- Where I AM 
- I AM in the Father 
- I AM the way, the truth and the life
- I AM the resurrection and the life