God has many names. In Exodus 6:3, He said, “And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name JEHOVAH was I not known to them.” In the Old Testament, He also referred to Himself as “THE LORD THY GOD,” “The Holy One of Jacob,” and “the God of Israel.” But then in Exodus 3:14, God said to 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.” Therefore, the Jewish people came to know God as the great I AM. That name was holy to them.
According to John 8:56-58, Jesus claimed God’s holy name. “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” Jesus was saying that before Abraham was born, He existed. And only God can claim the name I AM, so when Jesus said, Before Abraham was, I am, He was claiming to be the great I AM. That was blasphemy, and it was punishable by death under Jewish law. That’s why the Jews wanted to kill Him.
Referring to Christ, Colossians 1:17 says, “And he is before all things, and by him all things consist.” Consist means to be created; to exist. So Paul is saying that Christ was around before everything else and that by Him all things were created. Now Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” So if Christ was around before everything else and He created all things, then Genesis 1:1 is referring to Christ, which means that Jesus is God.
John wrote, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” According to Revelation 19:13, “…his name is called The Word of God.” So Jesus is the Word in John 1:1. He was in the beginning; before everything else. He was with God, and He was God. Then verse three says, “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1:1,3) So when Genesis chapter one details the creation account, our Creator, God Almighty, the great I AM, is actually our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Hence, Jesus said in John 8:23, “…Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.”