Grace Bible Church
Robert R. McLaughlin
August 7, 2019

“The Great I Am” passages that meant many things to the Jewish disciples as well as many things to us as Church-age believers.


The “Great I Am” is revealed throughout the Word of God in both the Old and the New Testaments with one interpretation but many applications.


  1. Our Lord is called the “True Vine” because the word True refers to His character and nature and the word Vine refers to His essence as the God of Truth; Deu 32:4.
  2. We learn how our Lord, in His humanity, drew His spiritual life which resulted in the spiritual energy and spiritual motivation He needed from living the spiritual life and fulfilling the divine plan of God.
  3. “The True Vine” also refers to His Deity which is derived from the first part of verse 1 when our Lord said; JOH 15:1 “I Am” the true vine” which refers to the “Great I Am” passages.
  4. The “True Vine” as it relates to the Hypostatic Union; Joh 14:6  “Jesus said, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life.”
  5. “My Father is the vinedresser” referring to the logistical grace support that comes to the branches or believers from God the Father.

One of the most over-looked doctrinal principle is the relationship that exists between the Word of God and Salvation.


1CO 2:14  “a natural minded man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.


Hyper-Calvinism -- man cannot choose God because either God chooses man to be saved or God ignores man and overlooks His need for salvation because God is sovereign and can do whatever He desires.


This is the grace of God the Holy Spirit to the unbeliever and how He makes these things known to the unbeliever even though the unbeliever does not have a human spirit.


JAM 1:21, “in humility receive the word implanted [metabolized doctrine], which is able to save or deliver our souls, especially concerning salvation.


1PE 1:23   for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and abiding word of God.


In one of the most popular passages concerning salvation and being born again the apostle John relates salvation with the water of the Word of God as is found in Joh 3:1-7.


The apostle Paul revealing the relationship between the Word of God and salvation as in ROM 10:8  But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart"‑‑ that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,


To the Corinthian Church, the apostle Paul writes; 1CO 1:18   For the word of the cross is to those who are perishing foolishness, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.


EPH 5:25   Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her; that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word = Salvation.


The apostle Peter says in 1PE 2:2  like newborn babes, long for the pure milk of the word, that by it you may grow in respect to salvation,


Even the Old Testament mentions water, cleanliness and salvation beginning in ISA 55:1.


Many believers have been accused of doing something that they did not do but instead of responding with doctrine in a positive way, they reacted with demon influence in a negative way.


  1. Satan became the ruler of this world.
    b. The old sin nature became the ruler of man's body.
    c.  Mankind became spiritually dead, and therefore under the condemnation of the justice of God.

Adam took a perfect soul, and, by his negative volition, he revolted against divine authority and created the old sin nature.


But being free, Adam could also reject divine authority.


While the soul is not occupied by the old sin nature, the soul becomes the battlefield which the old sin nature attacks and where it is often tactically successful.


The influence of the old sin nature on the soul is seen in mental attitude sins and motivations.


There is no question that the body effects the soul and the mentality, just as the soul effects the body (psychosomatics).


  1. As the Great I Am, our Lord is our spiritual food; Joh 6:35 Jesus said, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger.”
  2. As the Great I Am, our Lord is also the spiritual drink we need to quench our thirst for righteousness and intimacy with our Lord; Joh 6:35.
  3. As the Great I Am, our Lord said, "I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in the darkness, but shall have the light of life."
  4. As the Great I Am, our Lord is also said to be from above; Joh 8:23 And He was saying to them, "You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world.
  5. As the Great I Am, our Lord also said that we were or we use to be of this world, but the "Great I Am” said in Joh 8:23b I am not of this world.
  6. The Great I Am, our Lord Jesus Christ also said that unless we believe that He is the “I Am” we will die in our sins and we will be undegenerated and definitely they were not born again; JOH 8:24.
  7. The “I Am” also uses that title to reveal that the we must believe that the “I Am” must be recognized as “Almighty God Himself;” JOH 8:24 "Unless you believe that “I Am”  is the great I Am, we will die in our sin of rejecting Him.
  8. The “I Am” title also reveals the eternity of our Lord, because in JOH 8:58 Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am."
  9. As the great I Am, our Lord gives us the light and the guidance to see and perceive the will of God. JOH 9:5 "I am the light of the world."
  10. As the great I Am he claimed to be the one that the Jews were waiting for in JOH 9:9 Jesus kept saying, "I am the one."
  11. The I Am also opens up some of the doors and also closes or shuts other doors, why? Because in JOH 10:11 Jesus said I am the door of the sheep.
  12. As the Great I Am, our Lord also protects us sheep from the wolves; JOH 10:11 "I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
  13. The “I Am” claimed to be the Son of God. JOH 10:36, our Lord said to the scribes and the Pharisees and the Sadducees; “You are truly blaspheming because the Lord said, 'I am the Son of God'?
  14. As the Great I Am, our Lord reveals and tells us that He is the resurrection and he is the life. JOH 11:25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me shall live even if he dies.
  15. As the Great I Am, there is the teaching ministry of our Lord who said to His disciples in JOH 13:13 "You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for {so} I am.
  16. The great I am is also responsible for fulfilled prophecy in JOH 13:19 "From now on I am telling you things before they come to pass, so that when it does occur, you may believe that “I am.” – that’s it! Not He but “I Am.”
  17. Probably one of the most popular passages on this principle of the Great I Am is found in JOH 14:6 Jesus said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me.
  18. JOH 15:1 "I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. (What more can we say – the I Am gives us the spiritual energy we need from the Spirit and the Word.
  19. The great I am was also the inner power our Lord possessed when Judas also who was betraying Him, was standing with them and when they shouted out who is Jesus of Nazareth, they heard the voice of victory say “I Am.”
  20. Finally, and let us close this section with the things that our Lord says as the “I Am” or what the I Am does according to the Gospel of John.

What do I mean by the quality of life that comes from the principle of the Great I Am?


As the great I Am, He is our spiritual food says JOH 6:35  "I am the bread of life”


In JOH 8:12, He gives us perception so that we can discern properly because as He said;  "I am the light of the world.”


In JOH 8:23, the great I Am tells us where He is from, “I am from above”


In JOH 8:23, our Lord also tells us what He thought of the world system because He did say;  “I am not of this world.”


In JOH 8:24, the “Great I Am” also takes the responsibility and accountability for who He as stated when he said, "I am He.”


In JOH 9:9, the I Am comes right to the point and says; "I am the one."


He teaches us what doors we should open or close; JOH 10:7   “I am the door of the sheep.”


The great I Am also gives us the confidence that as sheep, He is our shepherd; JOH 10:11 "I am the good shepherd.”


Probably one of the greatest “I Am” statements is found in JOH 10:36, where the great I am says; “I am the Son of God?”


In JOH 11:25, we are given a tremendous spiritual life where the “I Am” says;  "I am the resurrection and the life.”


In Joh 14:6, the I Am says, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life.”


And then another very controversial statement again from the great I Am we read in JOH 14:10  "I am in the Father.”


JOH 15:1  "I am the true vine.”
JOH 17:14  "I am not of the world.”
JOH 19:21  “I am King of the Jews.”


  1. The fourth principle deals with the “True Vine” as it relates to the Hypostatic Union; Joh 14:6 “Jesus said, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life.

MAT 7:14  "For the gate is small, and the way is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it.


MAT 3:3  For this is the one referred to by Isaiah the prophet, saying, "The voice of one crying in the wilderness, 'Make ready the way of the Lord, Make His paths straight!”


LUK 20:21  And they questioned Him, saying, "Teacher, we know that You speak and teach correctly, and You are not partial to any, but teach the way of God in truth.


ACT 16:17  Following after Paul and us, she kept crying out, saying, "These men are bond‑servants of the Most High God, who are proclaiming to you the way of salvation."


  1. The fifth and final principle from verse 1 is the last phrase; “My Father is the vinedresser” referring to the logistical grace support that comes to the branches or believers from God the Father.

He provides everything that we need pertaining to this life and everything that we need pertaining to living the spiritual life; Mat 6:33; 2Pe 1:2-4.


The word knowledge is called “true knowledge” because gnosis is not used but epignosis is used which refers to wisdom or metabolized doctrine.

The Apostle Peter has grown immensely because of his humility and his submission to the apostle Paul, which was so obvious that Peter even said that the Apostle Paul was a spiritual genius in 2Pe 3:15-16.


2PE 3:3  Know this first of all, that in the last days [Church-age or Client Nation days] being destroyed by the different mockers will come with {their} mocking, following after their own lusts,


They need to get back to their plan of controlling the opposite Truth which has been protected and enjoyed by believers who are always looking for reasons to get out and do or don’t do what we desire.


2PE 3:18  but grow in the grace and [gnosis] knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.

In JOH 15:2 we read;  "Every branch in Me [Baptism of the Spirit] that does not bear fruit, He takes away [Divine Discipline];


and every {branch} that bears fruit [Fruit of the Spirit], He prunes it [suffering for blessing], that it may bear more fruit [Divine good and the glorification].


  1. JOH 15:2 -- the principle of being “in Christ, as New creatures or as New Spiritual Species which is found in the verse which says "Every branch in Me” which is a reference to Baptism of the Spirit not WATER!

According to the Word of God there are eight different baptisms found in the Bible, Five Dry and Three Wet.


The word baptism means identification or association.


There are two categories of identification in scripture:
1.  An actual identification is called a real baptism.
2. A representative identification which is called a ritual baptism and it uses water as a teaching aid.


The Baptism of John the Baptist unto repentance for OT saints.
2. The Baptism of Jesus.
3. R. The Baptism of the New Testament Saints with identification with positional truth.


  1. The Baptism of fire.
    5. The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.
    6. The Baptism unto Moses.
  2. The Baptism of Noah and his family.
    8. The Baptism of the cup of sin.
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