When you can understand that you will be ready for the next step in your walk with Me.”
God spoke this to me sometime around the end of October. It prompted me to begin searching and seeking to understand. I pray that what I have been learning would also encourage you, that you might walk closer with Him.
Did you know that God has a name? Most people refer to him as God, but god is not His name in the same way human being is not my name. God’s son has a name, I figured he needed one what with living on earth and all, but I used to think that God himself had no name.
The Jews don’t say the name of God aloud for fear that they will inadvertantly take God’s name in vain. Instead, when they read God’s name, they say Adonai, which means “the Lord” or Ha Shem, which means “the name”. English translations of the scriptures have followed that example and where ever the name of God is used in the Old Testament they put “the LORD”.
God first tells His name to Moses when He speaks from the burning bush. He declares that His name is “I AM”, or YHWH (which we have anglicised to Yahweh or Jehovah.) He emphasizes it by saying it to Moses three different ways.
Exodus 3:13-15 Then Moses said to God, “Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now they may say to me, ‘What is His name?’ What shall I say to them?” God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ” God, furthermore, said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘The LORD (YHWH), the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations.”
John Piper said, “So here is where we ought to spend a lot of time meditating. What does it mean when you ask your God, Who are you? and he answers, I AM WHO I AM? I hope you can begin to feel how important these words are. There aren’t any words more important than these. Any words that you think might be (important), are important only because these words are true. The more you ponder them, the more awesome they become.”
The French philospher, René Descartes, said, “I think, therefore I am.” In other words, because I am conscious, I exist and I know that I exist. He said that even the thought of doubting his own existence proved his existence because he had the thought. Man needs a point of reference. We need the thinking or the seeing or the touching to validate our existence. YHWH is. No qualifiers. No conditions. No points of reference. Nothing came before Him, nothing made Him what He is and He needs nothing to continue to be. Plain and simple He can declare to all the universe, “I AM.”
On occassion I have heard a person say “I am who I am.” I may have even said it myself once or twice. I begin to realize that this statement is the height of arrogance. It implies: “I have decided to be the way that I am and I am not going to change it for anyone. If you don’t like it you are just going to have to deal with it.” What we fail to take into account is all that has come before: all of the events, interactions and influences that have shaped, altered and formed who and what we are. God on the other hand can say with authority, “I AM WHO I AM” because before anything else came into existence He was. There is nothing that now exists that was not created and set in motion by Him. (This is not to say that evil comes from Him. Click here for some thoughts on this.) What then can influence or shape Him, what event could occur that He has not already prepared for and can handle without altering who He is?
Now considering what God said to Moses, take a look at the statement Jesus makes to the Pharisees. John 8:58 “Jesus said unto them, ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.’” Can there be any doubt that He was claiming to be God. Not only is he claiming to have been in existence before Abraham was born, but he also uses the key phrase, “I am”.
Jesus always directed us to the Father. In all that He taught He instructed us to pray to, worship, honor and glorify the Father. In all that He did He gave the glory to the Father and obeyed the will of the Father.
Mark 12:29-30 And Jesus answered him, “The first of all the commandments [is], Hear, O Israel; YHWH our God is one YHWH: And thou shalt love YHWH thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this [is] the first commandment.”
In the process of learning about YHWH I am also reexamining what I have been taught concerning the trinity, both the members of it and there relationship to each other. But I think I will save that for another post.