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I AM

May 2, 2016

Exodus 3:14 changes the shape of the entire Old Testament.

When God sent Moses to the Israelites to tell them the God of their father sent him to deliver them, Moses asked a significant question. Who was Moses to tell them had sent him? Who is the God of their fathers? The revelation of God to Moses is possibly the most significant moment in the history of the doctrine of God. In Exodus 3:14 God answers Moses question, “I AM THAT I AM. Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” The next verse expands on this, “Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.”

Several generations of Israelites had now lived their entire lives in Egypt. Egypt was a polytheistic nation- the Egyptians did not worship one God but many gods. Of the many gods, the Israelites would want to know which one was going to rescue them. God’s answer is not cryptic. God does not tell Moses, “I am going to rescue you.” He tells Moses, my name is I AM. He says, “this is my name forever”. He says this is the name of the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.

In identifying Himself this way He distinguishes Himself from the false gods of the Egyptians. He is not Anubis, Isis, Ra or Osiris. He distinguishes Himself from the false gods of all the other nations. He is not Baal, Ashteroth, Molech or Dagon. He is the God who Abraham, Isaac and Jacob worshiped. He is the God who promised a land, a people, protection and blessing to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob.

This name I AM continues to be the name of God even today. The name LORD, Jehovah and Yahweh are translations or transliterations of this name I AM. This is who our God is. As His name suggests, He does not change. The God of the Bible is the God of today. The God of the Old Testament is the God of the New Testament. The God of Israel is the God of the Church. The God of the ancient Patriarchs is the God of the living saints. This God is the same who called Abraham out of his land. This God is the same who spoke to Isaac. This God is the same who made great promises to Jacob. This is the same God who was with Joseph. This is the same God who heard the cries of the Israelites. This is the same God who spoke to Moses from a burning bush. This is the same God who made a mockery of the Egyptian deities. This is the same God who brought Israel through the wilderness and gave them the land promised to them. This is the same God who sent judges and prophets to warn His people. This is the same God who punished their rebellion and showed them mercy when they repented. This is the same God who promised an eternal kingdom. This is the same God who swore to send a Messiah. This is the same God who foretold great joy and bliss for those who would obey Him. This is the same God who sent His Son to be the Messiah of His people and the Savior of the world. This is the same God who is at work in His church today.

God is the God who is and who remains unchanging forever. He is no generic deity made up by a people to explain the mysteries of the world around them. He is the God who made a people and who will be glorified by them. He is the foundation of reality. He is the unalterable, unfailing God of all eternity. God is the I AM. He is Jehovah, the YHWH of the Old Testament, the Heavenly Father of the New Testament and the Glorious God of all eternity.

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