" THE GREAT I AM "
The Easter season is one of my favorite holidays!! We are on our way of getting out of winter and people are so much looking forward to spring! For me it is a time when I reflect on my walk with the Lord. Now, I am not going into all the "stuff" that goes into the season of Lent. What I am going to share with you is one of the most powerful stories that happened in the Bible that made a huge impact to me in my own personal walk. OK, there a lot of them but this one is awesome when you take the time to sit down and study it.
In the above scripture reference, Jesus is in the Garden and He is faced with Judas and a huge arm of soldiers and temple guards. I know I shared this before a few years ago about how many soldiers went looking for Jesus that night. Now, in movies and shows, drama skits and other productions sometimes show a few or a dozen or so but once you study the background of the time that it was in, you see that there were a lot more than that!!
Remember earlier in scripture how it was written that the officials tried to get Jesus but they couldn't because it was not "the time."? See Luke 4:30; John 7:30; John 8:59; and John 10:39. Think about this for a minute. Jesus had a powerful and productive ministry that grew very quickly and word had gotten out about what He was doing. The officials were getting very concerned that if they didn't get a handle on this, that He was going to cause an uprising that would make the relationship between them and the Romans very bad. And their own power over the people would become weak and uncertain.
So, a "small" army of soldiers and temple guards were sent. Now, here is where numbers begin to expand from the common thought. As we have said, a few times the authorities tried to take Jesus but failed. Well, now they had their "man" on the inside and they were going to make sure that He wasn't going to get away this time!
Going through the scriptures and the Greek language it showed that over 600+ soldiers were sent along with the Temple guards. The soldiers were bad dudes to begin with but the Temple Guards were the ones that could do anything they wanted in order to keep the order! They were all well trained.
They were sent out at night so they had lanterns and torches. They were going to search all night if they had to. Their mission was not to come back without Jesus. And they weren't going to let Him slip away!
Do you see the seriousness in this? They had an army of soldiers to hunt down Jesus and any of His men were not going to get in their way!
So they find Him and surround Him so of no escape. Now, here is Jesus, standing before them with a few disciples, with all these soldiers decked out with the baddest weapons they had at the time, and He asked them who they were looking for!!! They answered Him, "Jesus the Nazarene."
Now this is where it gets good!! Jesus answered them, " I AM"!! When He said that, the soldiers went backward and fell down!! If you look at the actual Greek, "went backward" means staggering and stumbling backward.
"Fell" in the Greek means to fall so hard, it appeared to be dead or fell like a corpse.
"To the ground" in the Greek means falling abruptly and hitting the ground hard!
Our Lord said these two words and it knocked over 600+troops and dropped them like bricks to the ground!! A small fraction of power was behind those words!! That is the same power that rose Jesus from the grave a short time later!! That's the same power that we have when the Holy Spirit comes upon us!! We just don't allow Him to manifest Himself in us!!
There is so much more to share in this but I want you to get before the Lord and give up all the sin and the bondage's that might be in your life and allow His Spirit to take up residency in you. We all have sin and we all sin each day one way or another. No one is perfect!! But we have a choice to make and wouldn't it be better to live with Him than without Him??
So, during these last few days of this Easter season, think about all that Jesus did on the cross and the victory we have in Him for defeating death and allowing us to share in the inheritance of eternal life.
It is a daily struggle but Jesus is always there with us. We just have to recognize Him!