Well, friends, we did it. Together, we learned about all seven of Jesus’ “I am” statements in the Gospel of John. The statements capture the power, character, and heart of Jesus, who reflects the power, character, and heart of God. The statements were made to be provocative to early readers of John’s gospel. They were meant to stir emotion and cause the reader to pause and reflect on this Jesus, who used the same name for himself as God used in the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament). Jesus used these statements to point out a key truth: he was one with God. Practically speaking, that meant that if Jesus’ followers knew him, then they knew God. Jesus needed to help pull back the layers of religious fundamentalism and religious division to help the world see that God loved all and was accessible to all people.

To a world hungering for truth, Jesus is the bread of life, offering spiritual nourishment for life (John 6).

For the people walking in darkness and grasping for something familiar, Jesus is the light of the world (John 8).

For those who were wondering what hoops they needed to jump through to belong to God, they need only come to Jesus, who is the gate to peace (John 10).

To the confused, looking for guidance and direction, Jesus is the good shepherd leading them to abundant life (John 10).

For the hopeless, Jesus is the resurrection, restoring life to that which seemed gone (John 11).

For Christians on the verge of leaving the faith, Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14).

To spiritually barren, Jesus is the true vine, producing the good fruit of love (John 15).

Jesus didn’t just say these things to be provocative. He also used these statements to inspire to his followers to action – to do the things he was doing (and even greater – John 14).

It is my prayer that your faith has been enriched through this series; that you have not just learned something new, but you have received something that has helped transform the way you know and experience God.

If you are interested in some “next steps” or some reading that might help you continue to develop your faith, here are some suggestions:

The Imitation of Christ: Annotated & Explained, by Paul Wesley Chilcote This resource would make a great daily (or shorter devotion), and it’s great for all people on their faith journey.

Jesus Before Christianity, by Albert Noland This resource was suggested by a couple of our small group leaders and long-time church members.

A More Christlike Way, Bradley Jersak This resource was suggested by a couple of our small group leaders and long-time church members.

The Cost of Discipleship, by Dietrich Bonhoeffer This resource is probably geared for more for folks farther along on their faith journey.

If you are looking for other resources for personal or spiritual growth, please feel free to reach out to me!

Thanks,
Pastor Derek

Listen below as Pastor Derek and Rev. Kevin Horak explore all seven of Jesus’ “I am” statements in the Gospel of John

May 1, 2022

1st sermon series “I am the bread of life” statement of the gospel of John

May 8, 2022

2nd sermon series “I am the light of the world” statement of the gospel of John

May 15, 2022

3rd sermon series “I am the gate” statement of the gospel of John

May 22, 2022

4th sermon series “I am the good Shepard” statement of the gospel of John

May 29, 2022

5th sermon series “I am the resurrection” statement of the gospel of John

June 19, 2022

6th sermon series “I am the way” statement of the gospel of John

June 26, 2022

7th sermon series “I am the vine” statement of the gospel of John