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Who is Jesus Christ?

IPC's sanctuary in the spring

Lent is one of my favorite seasons of the year. It is just a six-week period that challenges us to take a look at our spiritual lives and find ways to take a few steps in our walk of faith. And I can do anything for six weeks. 

I hope that many of you are taking part in a Lenten Grace Group as we look at the "I AM" statements of Jesus in the Gospel of John, which we will also be exploring in worship each week. 

I love the Fourth Gospel for a variety of reasons. But one of the things I love most about it is the way it constantly forces us to wrestle with the identity of Jesus. In just the first few chapters, John tells us that Jesus is the Word of God made flesh, the Light of all people, the only Son of the Father, the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world, the one who gives the Holy Spirit, the Messiah, the Son of Man, the Savior, and the one who gives the Living Water, just to name a few. The rest of John’s Gospel is about putting flesh around these titles and characteristics. 

But when Jesus begins saying, “I am…” he is pointing us back to the story in Exodus 3 when God calls out to Moses from the burning bush, commissioning him to go back to Egypt to set the Israelites free. When Moses asks who should he say had sent him, God says, “I AM WHO I AM... Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I AM has sent me to you’” (Exodus 3:14). So when Jesus declares, “I AM the Bread of Life,” or “I AM the Light of the World,” or “I AM the Good Shepherd,” he is claiming to be the God of the Exodus come in the flesh. 

As the author of Hebrews writes, “He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word” (Heb. 1:3). Or as Paul writes, “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created…For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell…” (Col. 1:15,19). Or as John himself writes in the opening verse of his Gospel, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). 

This means that when we look into the face of Jesus, we are seeing as much of God as we ever hope to see. Therefore, we all should be taking a serious look at our faithfulness to Jesus and finding ways to grow as his disciples. 

And that is what Lent is all about. I hope you will join me in worship as we wrestle with these fascinating “I AM” statements of Jesus. 

Observe the Lenten Season

Journey toward the cross at IPC. All are welcome to worship and observe Lent with us. Check out ways to worship and find fellowship during this season.

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