Was John protecting his Friend and Master? It was such a personal moment. Was he embarrassed, ashamed that he, such a close friend, had failed his Lord at such a critical moment?
We aren’t told. But it is what happened just a little later that grabs the imagination.
Judas comes with the soldiers and the religious authorities. Jesus asks them who they have come for—though he knows the answer. They reply: “Jesus of Nazareth.”
“‘I am he,’ Jesus said...When Jesus said, ‘I am he,’ they drew back and fell to the ground” (John 18:6).
I am stepping out on a limb to say that the Lord didn’t not have a menace in His voice when He said, “I am he.” It was not an implied threat that drove them to their knees.
When Jesus says, “ I am he,” there is power in that statement.
I am God.
I am Creator.
I am Messiah.
I am King of kings.
I am Lord of lords.
Did they sense the power? Was there just enough doubt in their hearts and minds about who this man MIGHT be, that they were just a teensy bit afraid that their actions would bring down upon them the retribution of Almighty God?
There is power in that name. It is through the name of Jesus that men are saved. It is at the name of Jesus that all men will bow.
It’s a name we often take lightly. It’s a name we use too much for the wrong reasons and in the wrong contexts. It is a name that we don’t call on often enough.
What would we do if the next time we used that name, a voice spoke and said: “I am he”? Surely we too would hit the ground. It is a name that should bring us to our knees.