John 4:26 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 4:26, NIV: "Then Jesus declared, 'I, the one speaking to you--I am he.'"

John 4:26, ESV: "Jesus said to her, “I who speak to you am he.”"

John 4:26, KJV: "Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he."

John 4:26, NASB: "Jesus *said to her, 'I am He, the One speaking to you.'"

John 4:26, NLT: "Then Jesus told her, 'I Am the Messiah!'"

John 4:26, CSB: "Jesus told her, "I, the one speaking to you, am he.""

What does John 4:26 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

The Gospel of John includes seven instances where Jesus refers to Himself using the expression "I AM," connecting Himself to some spiritual idea. This is not usually thought of as one of those, since Jesus simply acknowledges Himself as the Messiah. In some conversations, Jesus' use of the phrase "I AM" is very deliberate, and is a claim to divinity. For instance, in John 8:58, Jesus uses this expression in reference to Himself. The local religious leaders respond in shock, realizing that Jesus is claiming to be God (John 8:59), having used the same title that God used to describe Himself to Moses (Exodus 3:13–15).

What John records about the conversation with the Samaritan woman is clearly a summary, not a detailed transcript. Judging by the woman's comments about Jesus' knowledge (John 4:29), and her reaction in the next few verses, there are more words spoken between them than are written here.

This statement by Jesus is the exclamation point on a brilliant conversation. As he did with Nicodemus, Jesus moved directly to the need of the person He was speaking with. After making her acknowledge her need and her sin, He provided her with what He had previously promised: the water of eternal life. This, of course, was Christ Himself (John 7:37–38).