Water for the Thirsty
Weekly Devotional

Water for the Thirsty

Jesus preached about Himself

Weekly Devotional

‘As the deer pants for streams of water so my soul pants for you, O God’. (Psalm 42:1)
‘…Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink”…’ (John 7:37)

If you or I promoted or preached about ourselves we would be regarded as vain and possibly an egomaniac. Yet Jesus, being God incarnate, rightfully declared the truth about Himself.

This is clearly seen in the seven great ‘I am’ statements Jesus made about Himself. Jesus preached Himself as:

1. The Bread of life (John 6:35)

True believers in Jesus will never hunger. He in Himself the source of heavenly life and supplies the spiritual nutriment that provides permanent spiritual satisfaction. Such bread will satiate the hunger in the soul of any spiritual beggar.

2. The Light of the world (John 8:12)

God, the ultimate source of light, is fully manifested in the Son. Jesus preached Himself as the Son of God giving light and salvation to His people – bearing witness to Himself as the God who illuminates (Isaiah 60:19-22; Rev 21:23-4) and who conquers sin and all its darkness.

3. The Gate of the sheep (John 10:7)

Near Eastern shepherds examined each sheep as the flock entered the sheep pen for the night. Jesus, the gate, proclaims Himself as the only one who decides who enters His sheep pen. Jesus calls false messiahs ‘thieves and robbers’ (John 10:8) but declares Himself as the ‘…gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture.’ (John 10:9).

4. The good shepherd (John 10:11)

Jesus as shepherd feeds, guides, and protects His followers, giving an abundant, rich life to the sheep He loves. Jesus preaches that He is the one who would willingly give himself as a substitute for sinners, declaring three times that He would lay down His life on behalf of, or for the sake of, others (John 10:11,15,17). ‘Good’ can also be translated ‘fitting, honourable, or noble’. The Son of God preaches Himself as the noble substitutionary sacrifice.

5. The resurrection and the life (John 11:25)

Martha was well versed in Old Testament theology and was assured that God would resurrect saints on the last day. But Jesus lovingly explained to her that these were already the last days – the days of the Messiah who is ‘the resurrection and the life’. Both nouns (resurrection and life) have the definite article (the) signifying that Jesus personally grants the resurrection and eternal life. He wanted Martha to know that the significance is on the person, not on the event itself.

6. The way the truth and the life (John 14:5-6)

Jesus alone is the access to the Father. Political correctness shudders at this bold declaration. Jesus doesn’t teach them the way to the Father (as if the problem was knowledge) but that He himself is the way to God, the truth of God, the life of God.

7. The true vine (John 15:1)

Jesus announced that He is the source of spiritual vitality, sustaining and spiritually nurturing His disciples. Jesus grants strength and life to His people, as a grapevine would yield sustenance to its branches.

All of these seven ‘I am’ statements ‘…are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name’ (John 20:31).

As you reflect on these statements of Jesus may they enable you to believe and carry on believing that He indeed is the Son of God.

Have a good week,

Pastor Barry

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