Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am (John 8:58).
In the third chapter of Exodus we read that God spoke to Moses and told him that He had chosen this time to liberate the Jews from their slavery in Egypt, and He had chosen Moses to demand their freedom from Pharaoh and to lead them out of Egypt. Moses then asked God, when the people of Israel asked him for the name of the God of their fathers who had sent him, what he should say to them. (Exodus 3:13). God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and He said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you (Exodus 3:14). In this saying, God, using the first person, names Himselfthe one and only God, eternal, self-existent, and self-maintaining.
Nearly 1500 years later God sent His Son in the person of Jesus Christ to preach the good news of the gospel and to proclaim that He was the Christ, the Savior, the Son of God. The Jewish authorities with few exceptions refused to believe, and constantly sought reasons to condemn Him. To these unbelieving Jews Christ told them, Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad (John 8:56). These Jews ridiculed His claim, stating that Jesus, being less than 50 years old, could not have seen Abraham. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, before Abraham was, I am (John 8:58). Here he appropriated the exact words to Himself that God had spoken to Moses, thus asserting that He was eternal, self-existent, self-maintaining and equal with God. These Jews understood exactly what Jesus meant and began to stone Him for blasphemy.
Today, those who deny the deity of Christ are guilty of the same crime, for we have those accounts as well as reports of those who were eyewitnesses of His resurrection. DTG