The United Pentecostal Church International and the Texas District theme for 2019 is I AM. “I AM” speaks to the revelation of God. Embracing that revelation shapes our identity and positively impacts our lives in countless ways.
In Exodus 3, Moses encountered a bush that was on fire but not consumed. That was just the beginning of a series of amazing things he experienced that day. He would go on to hear the audible voice of God and receive a divine commission to lead Israel out of bondage. While all this was extraordinary, it was not the zenith of the day. That would come when God revealed himself as “I AM THAT I AM.” (Exodus 3:14) That revelation, which strains our ability to comprehend, revealed the uniqueness and power of our God. There is none other like Him!
When the mission of delivering Israel from Egypt was given to Moses, his first reaction was to look at his own insufficiencies and say to God, “Who am I?” God never answered that question. Instead, God declared of Himself that He was the “I AM THAT I AM” and assured Moses He would be with him. If such a God would be for him, who could be against him!
In identifying as the “I AM THAT I AM,” God declares Himself to be self-existent. No one else can be credited with the origin or continuation of God’s existence! Some have interpreted the original meaning of “I AM THAT I AM” to be “He who is,” or, perhaps more appropriately, “He who brings being into being.” Since we dwell in time and He dwells outside of time, it is hard for us to fully grasp His eternality. In an attempt to describe that existence, we could say: “He always was, He is, and He will always be.” And since “all things were created by him,” we could say that all things (including us) that were, that are, and that will be owe their existence to Him. He is unique in His existence and His power.
When the “I AM” of Exodus 3 declares Himself as being on your team, the outcome is already decided. We can even move forward into the unknown with confidence. Because we know the “I AM,” we can be who He called us to be! What great things can be accomplished in the kingdom of God as we realize that we are not alone but are empowered by the great “I AM!”
The great “I AM” came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ. Jesus repeatedly declared himself as the “I AM” in the gospel of John; and with each of these “I AM” declarations, he gave a corresponding promise for you and I. He said, “I am…
…the bread of life” and promised we would never hunger or thirst. (John 6:35)
…the light of the world” and promised we would never walk in darkness. (John 8:12)
…the door” and promised we would be saved and provided for. (John 10:9)
…the good shepherd” and promised we would be protected and never forgotten. (John 10:11)
…the resurrection and the life” and promised us eternal life. (John 11:25-26)
…the way, the truth, and the life” and promised us access to God. (John 14:6)
…the vine” and promised us fruitfulness.
Knowing the great “I AM” assures our identity. We can say with surety, “I am a Christian, I am Apostolic, and I am Pentecostal!” It also empowers us to stand upon His promises and boldly declare, “I am filled, I am healed, I am set free, I am provided for, I am protected, and I am saved!”
I am glad I know the “I AM THAT I AM!”
Kevin L. Prince
Texas District Superintendent