Saturday, 2nd Week of Easter
“It is I. Do not be afraid.”
In John’s Gospel, the statement “It is I,” which literally “I am,” is the revelation formula par excellence. It reflects the Old Testament self-revelation of Yahweh.
Let us go back to the Book of Exodus… Moses was called and told by God to say to the Israelites, “The God of your fathers has sent me to you?” And Moses said, “If they (the Israelites) ask me, ‘What is his name?’ What am I to tell them?” God replied: I AM WHO AM. It is the translation of the Hebrew name YAHWEH.
The God whose is name I AM WHO AM is also the GOD WHO IS WITH US. He is Emmanuel… He is Jesus. “It is I” or “I AM,” therefore reveals the divinity of Jesus.
“It is I. Do not be afraid.” The Lord Jesus is the Lord of the present – the Lord and God of the here and now. When we live in the past, with our mistakes and regrets, we can never encounter God – God is not there. His name is not “I WAS.” When we live in the future, with our worries and anxieties, we can never encounter God – God is also not there His name is not “I Will Be.” We must live in this moment, because God is in the here and now. His name is “I AM,” God who is with us in this moment.
“It is I. Do not be afraid.” – is like telling us: “I AM with you… I AM always with you… Do not be afraid.” When we recognize that the Lord Jesus is, indeed, with us in the moment, in the here and now, we won’t be afraid.
“It is I. Do not be afraid.” – This is a timely message for all of us – precisely because “we are afraid” of a lot of things. “Do not be afraid” is also the Lord’s message to us.
Let us end with a prayer: Lord, let me understand that in and through you all my little concerns will be taken care of. You do not despise my worries, but you ask me to trust you… to trust that you will deal with them. Lord, let me come to you… let me enter into your presence and experience there your faithful, everlasting love with which you invite me to let go of my fears… to let go of my insecurities, anxieties, and preoccupations.