John 8:58

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21centpilgrim
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John 8:58

Post by 21centpilgrim » Sun Sep 08, 2019 10:29 pm

I touched on this question on a different thread and hoped to focus on this. was Jesus claiming to be the 'I am/Yahweh' of Exodus 3? Or is Jesus claiming to be the one who's day Abraham rejoiced that he would see- namely the Messiah, the promised Abrahamic seed (singular Gal. 3), that Abraham was looking forward to by faith. which was enough to warrant stoning seemingly at the time.

53 Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died? And the prophets died! Who do you make yourself out to be?” 54 Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is nothing. It is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’ 55 But you have not known him. I know him. If I were to say that I do not know him, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him and I keep his word. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced that he would see my day. He saw it and was glad.” 57 So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?” 58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” 59 So they picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple.

When looking at the whole passage, we can't isolate 57,58 but 56 and before, correct? And doesn't that lead to the distinct possibility that Jesus is claiming to be the Messiah? Also, doesn't verse 54 directly equate, from the mouth of Jesus, the Father and God? And so the popular Trinitarian interpretation of 58 would be that Jesus is saying that he is the Father? Lends more to Modelism it seems.

Anyways I hope that I have presented this question in a manner that is somewhat clear.
thanks
Then those who feared the LORD spoke with each other, and the LORD listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and loved to think about him.

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Paidion
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Re: John 8:58

Post by Paidion » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:57 pm

As I understand verse 58, Jesus was simply saying that He existed before Abraham. I think it is mere assumption that He was trying to say that He was the "the Great I AM." I don't think the verse implies either Trinitarianism or Modalism.
Paidion

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21centpilgrim
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Re: John 8:58

Post by 21centpilgrim » Mon Sep 09, 2019 9:07 pm

Paidion wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:57 pm
As I understand verse 58, Jesus was simply saying that He existed before Abraham. I think it is mere assumption that He was trying to say that He was the "the Great I AM." I don't think the verse implies either Trinitarianism or Modalism.
Thanks Paidion, so you don't think that verse 56 plays into the interpretation of 58?
Did Abraham literally see Jesus' day or did he see it by faith-looking forward to the eventual promise being fulfilled?
Jesus is the promised seed, promised before Abraham- Gen 3.
Jesus was the Lamb of God whom Abraham told Isaac that God would provide
Then those who feared the LORD spoke with each other, and the LORD listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and loved to think about him.

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Re: John 8:58

Post by StevenD » Tue Sep 10, 2019 5:16 am

was Jesus claiming to be the 'I am/Yahweh' of Exodus 3? Or is Jesus claiming to be the one who's day Abraham rejoiced that he would see- namely the Messiah, the promised Abrahamic seed (singular Gal. 3), that Abraham was looking forward to by faith. which was enough to warrant stoning seemingly at the time.
It may be difficult to argue that Jesus' words recorded in John 8:58 allude to Exodus 3:14. Nonetheless, I think that you've highlighted a more simple route to endorse Jesus as deity.

Paul's description of the promised seed as singular (Gal. 3:16) does not appear to be completely innovative. Rather, it looks like Paul read Jeremiah the prophet in view of the patriarchal promises in Genesis (12:3; 18:18; 22:18; 26:4; 28:14; also Psalm 72:17 in repointed Hebrew or LXX). Although Jeremiah 4:2 does not employ the exact word "seed" in his formulation (cf. also Gen. 12:3; 18:18; Ps. 72:17), the features he does include are easily recognizable as solid support for Paul's thesis. For what it may be worth, see below:

Gen. 12:3b: וְנִבְרְכוּ בְךָ כֹּל מִשְׁפְּחֹת הָאֲדָמָה
“And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”

Gen. 18:18b: וְנִבְרְכוּ-בוֹ כֹּל גּוֹיֵי הָאָרֶץ
“And in him all the nations of the earth will be blessed.”

Gen. 22:18a: וְהִתְבָּרְכוּ בְזַרְעֲךָ כֹּל גּוֹיֵי הָאָרֶץ
“And in your seed all the nations of the earth will be blessed [note: or 'will bless themselves'].”

Gen. 26:4b: וְהִתְבָּרְכוּ בְזַרְעֲךָ כֹּל גּוֹיֵי הָאָרֶץ
“And in your seed all the nations of the earth will be blessed [note: or 'will bless themselves'].”

Gen. 28:14b: וְנִבְרְכוּ בְךָ כָּל-מִשְׁפְּחֹת הָאֲדָמָה וּבְזַרְעֶךָ
“And in you, and in your seed, all the families of the earth will be blessed."

Also note Ps. 72:17: וְיִתְבָּרְכוּ בוֹ כָּל-גּוֹיִם
“And in him all nations will be blessed [note: or 'will bless themselves in him'].”

Jeremiah 4:2b: וְהִתְבָּרְכוּ בוֹ גּוֹיִם
“And in him nations will be blessed [note: or 'will bless themselves'].”

Finally, by the looks of Jeremiah's prophecy, the subject of his prophecy is Yahweh. I'm not sure how to responsibly interpret Jeremiah 4:2 otherwise. It reads, "And you will swear that Yahweh lives in truth, in judgment, and in righteousness, then nations will bless themselves in him and in him shall they glory.” Ps. 72:17 seems to mark the Davidic identity of the promised seed while Jeremiah's prophecy underscores the Divine identity.

Thanks, hope to catch up with you in Portland sometime...

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Re: John 8:58

Post by backwoodsman » Tue Sep 10, 2019 8:29 am

21centpilgrim wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 10:29 pm
Also, doesn't verse 54 directly equate, from the mouth of Jesus, the Father and God? And so the popular Trinitarian interpretation of 58 would be that Jesus is saying that he is the Father? Lends more to Modelism it seems.
In v54 He says the Father is God. In v58, according to Robertson, Vincent, and Nicoll (Greek scholars), "I Am" means timeless existence, as contrasted to the word He uses regarding Abraham, which means he (Abraham) had a beginning. So in v58 He's saying He Himself is also God. But in v54 He draws a clear distinction between Himself and the Father. That seems to decisively eliminate modalism as a possibility.

Whatever they understood Him to say, it made them want to kill Him on the spot. There wasn't a lot that could do that, other than calling Himself God, which they took to be blasphemy.

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Re: John 8:58

Post by Paidion » Tue Sep 10, 2019 7:10 pm

Thanks Paidion, so you don't think that verse 56 plays into the interpretation of 58?
I do indeed believe it to be related. For years I have affirmed that Jesus is the divine Son of God whom the Father begat before all ages as the first of His acts. So Abraham did indeed see Him in his day.

According to Justin Martyr the Son shared the name "Yahweh" with His Father. He quotes Genesis 19:24 in which two divine Individuals are called "Yahweh":

Then Yahweh rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from Yahweh out of heaven.


One who was called "Yahweh" was in heaven. The other was the One on earth who had been talking with Abraham. Through the power of the One in heaven, the One on earth was able to rain sulfur and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah.
Paidion

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Re: John 8:58

Post by 21centpilgrim » Fri Sep 13, 2019 1:06 am

Paidon, so how do you see vs 56 to be related to 58 then?

thanks
Then those who feared the LORD spoke with each other, and the LORD listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and loved to think about him.

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Re: John 8:58

Post by Paidion » Sat Sep 14, 2019 6:30 pm

I think I answered that in the final three sentences of my post:

One who was called "Yahweh" was in heaven. The other was the One on earth who had been talking with Abraham. Through the power of the One in heaven, the One on earth was able to rain sulfur and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah.

The One was on earth talking to Abraham, and so Abraham "saw his day." Here is the passage from Genesis 18 which indicates that Abraham talked directly to Yahweh (translated as "the LORD"):

17 The LORD said, "Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do,
18 seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?
19 For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has promised him."
20 Then the LORD said, "Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great and their sin is very grave,
21 I will go down to see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry that has come to me. And if not, I will know."
22 So the men turned from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the LORD.
23 ¶ Then Abraham drew near and said, "Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked?
24 Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city. Will you then sweep away the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous who are in it?
25 Far be it from you to do such a thing, to put the righteous to death with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?"
26 And the LORD said, "If I find at Sodom fifty righteous in the city, I will spare the whole place for their sake."
27 Abraham answered and said, "Behold, I have undertaken to speak to the Lord, I who am but dust and ashes.
28 Suppose five of the fifty righteous are lacking. Will you destroy the whole city for lack of five?" And he said, "I will not destroy it if I find forty-five there."
29 Again he spoke to him and said, "Suppose forty are found there." He answered, "For the sake of forty I will not do it."
30 Then he said, "Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak. Suppose thirty are found there." He answered, "I will not do it, if I find thirty there."
31 He said, "Behold, I have undertaken to speak to the Lord. Suppose twenty are found there." He answered, "For the sake of twenty I will not destroy it."
32 Then he said, "Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak again but this once. Suppose ten are found there." He answered, "For the sake of ten I will not destroy it."
33 And the LORD went his way, when he had finished speaking to Abraham, and Abraham returned to his place.

Then in chapter 19 verse 24:
Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from the LORD out of heaven.

Two who are called "Yahweh" or "The LORD"—One on earth and One in heaven.
Paidion

Man judges a person by his past deeds, and administers penalties for his wrongdoing. God judges a person by his present character, and disciplines him that he may become righteous.

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Re: John 8:58

Post by 21centpilgrim » Tue Oct 15, 2019 2:02 am

Can agents, sent on behalf of a superior take, on the name of the one they are sent by?

That could be a possible answer to what you are appealing to Paidon, or it could be a swing and a miss.
Then those who feared the LORD spoke with each other, and the LORD listened to what they said. In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written to record the names of those who feared him and loved to think about him.

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