Shalom! My name is Adam Pastor

Welcome to ADONI MESSIAH which means
"My Lord Messiah" -
a fitting epithet to who Jesus (or Yeshua) is!

Here, I attempt to present the Apostolic Truths according to the Scriptures, that there is
One GOD, the Father, namely, YAHWEH,
and One Lord, GOD's only begotten Son,
Yeshua the Messiah.

And that one day YAHWEH will send His Son back to Earth to inaugurate the Everlasting Kingdom of GOD



Enjoy!


Thursday, October 09, 2008

Is Jesus the “I AM?” by Sean Finnegan

Is Jesus the “I AM?”

 

I recently received an email from a gentleman in the Philippines who was delighted to hear about the gospel of the kingdom for the first time but really struggled with our understanding of Christ. He asked, “Can you explain to me when Jesus used the title I am, Which I am is God's title.(Ex.3;14 John 18;5-8)?” This is a good question that needs to be asked and answered. Many times in modern translations John 8.58 will look like this.

John 8:58 (NAB)
Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham came to be, I AM.”

Notice the capitalization of the words “I AM” which immediately bring the informed reader to recall that just the same thing was said by God in Exodus 3.14.

Exodus 3:14 (NAB)
God replied, “I am who am.” Then he added, “This is what you shall tell the Israelites: I AM sent me to you.”

But is this impression the correct one for the reader? I believe that John 8.58 does not say that Jesus is the “I AM” of Exodus 3.14. The phrase translated “I am” in John 8.58 is ego eimi. This same exact phrase is translated as “I am he” (John 8.18, 24, 28) or “I am the one” (John 9.9). Of course, the words ego eimi may also be translated “I am” or “it’s me” etc. This simple phrase is common and it is certainly not some special divine terminology that only God uses. For example, the blind man uses the same words in reference to himself just 10 verses later.

John 9:8-10 (NASB)
8 Therefore the neighbors, and those who previously saw him as a beggar, were saying, “Is not this the one who used to sit and beg?” 9 Others were saying, “This is he,” still others were saying, “No, but he is like him.” He kept saying, “I am the one.” 10 So they were saying to him, “How then were your eyes opened?”

The words translated “I am the one” are ego eimi, exactly the same words Jesus used. So maybe Jesus is not trying to make us think of the I AM of Exodus 3.14 when he answered the Pharisees.
Maybe he is just saying, “I am the one” (i.e. I am the promised Messiah, cf. John 4.26). But, there’s more…

We have a Greek translation of the Old Testament, called the Septuagint (LXX), which we can use to see exactly how these two verses line up with each other.

John 8.58

ειπεν αυτοις ιησους αμην αμην λεγω υμιν
said he Jesus amen amen I say to you

πριν αβρααμ γενεσθαι εγω ειμι
before Abraham became I am (he)

Exodus 3.14

και ειπεν ο θεος προς Μωυσην εγω ειμι ο ων
and said the God to Moses I am the being

και ειπεν ουτως ερεις τοις υιοις Ισραηλ
and said he thus speak to sons of Israel

ο ων απεσταλκεν με προς υμας
the being sent me to you

So, in the Greek translation of Exodus 3.14 ego eimi is used but not the way one would expect.
In fact God says ego eimi o on (εγω ειμι ο ων) which means “I am the being” or “I am the existing one.”
Of course on (ων) is closely related to eimi (ειμι) being that it is the verb participle BUT my point is that if John 8.58 wanted us to connect Jesus with the “I AM” of Exodus 3.14, then the text should read

ego eimi o on (εγω ειμι ο ων) or simply o on (ο ων)

but the text instead says ego eimi (εγω ειμι).

Simply put, the Gospel of John is not trying to connect Jesus in 8.58 with God in Exodus 3.14 and to translate it so that there is such an obvious connection is at best careless and at worst deceitful.

The following comments by Jason David BeDuhn are instructive:

Truth in Translation pgs 107-108

Actually, “I am” is a very uncertain rendering of the Hebrew expression in Exodus. But those who promote the significance of the parallel between Exodus 3:14 and the expression “I am” in John say that the correspondence between the two is proven by the exact match in how Exodus 3.14 is translated in the Greek translation of the Old Testament (called the Septuagint) that was known to the New Testament authors and the wording used by John. A quick look at the Septuagint, however show this claim to be in error.

The Septuagint of Exodus 3:14 has God say ego eimi ho on, “I am the being,” or “I am the one that exists.”…
God does not say “I am I AM,” he says “I am the being.” “I am” sets up the title or identification God uses of himself, it is not itself a title. Separating “I am” off as if it were meant to stand alone is an interpretive sleight-of-hand, totally distorting the role the phrase plays in the whole sentence, either in the Greek Septuagint version of Exodus 3:14 or in John 8:58. There is absolutely nothing in the original Greek of John 8:58 to suggest he is quoting the Old Testament here…”

The above article was taken from KingdomReady.org's Blog