Of all the Gospel writers, John places the most emphasis upon the deity of Christ through recording His actual claims about Himself. When Christ said, “Before Abraham was born, I am” (8:58), the people knew that He was claiming the very name of God that was revealed to Moses at the burning bush (Exodus 3:14). This is why the people tried to stone Him for alleged blasphemy. Christ was and is the eternal I Am. In a series of assertions, He amplified that claim:
- I am the bread of life (6:35).
- I am the light of the world (8:12; 9:5).
- I am the door (10:7).
- I am the good shepherd (10:11, 14).
- I am the resurrection and the life (11:25).
- I am the way, the truth, and the life (14:6).
- I am the true vine (15:1).
Other supporting statements in John include “I and the Father are one” (10:30) and “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (14:9).
Jesus as the One Sent
As Jesus worked to establish His identity and His purpose in the minds of His listeners, He emphasized that He was “sent” from God:
- Jesus stated plainly that He was sent from the Father (6:57; 7:29; 8:42; 10:36).
- He said, “He who sent Me is with Me;…” (8:29).
- He spoke the words of the Father who sent Him (3:34; 7:16; 12:49; 14:24).
- He did the will, or the works, of the One who sent Him (4:34; 5:30, 36; 6:38, 39; 9:4).
- The world is called to believe in the One who was sent (6:29; 11:42; 17:8, 21, 23, 25).
- Jesus said, “No one can come to Me, unless the Father who sent Me draws him;…” (6:44).
- He said that the Father who sent Him has borne witness of Him (5:37; 8:18).
- He said, “He who beholds Me beholds the One who sent Me” (12:45).
- To accept or reject Jesus is to accept or reject the One who sent Him (5:23, 38; 12:44; 13:20).
- Jesus said that He would go to Him who sent Him (7:33; 16:5).
- He promised that eternal life would come through knowing the One who was sent (5:24; 17:3).
- He said that as the Father sent Him, He was sending His disciples (17:18; 20:21).
- Jesus warned His followers that they would be rejected by those who do not know the One who sent Him (15:21).
- He said that He and the One who sent Him are true (7:18, 28; 8:16, 26).