Read: Exodus 3:1-14
God said to Moses, “I Am Who I Am. So say to the Israelites , ‘I Am has sent me to you.”
— Exodus 3:14
In the Hebrew Bible, names represent hopes, dreams, and the characteristics of persons. For example, Jacob, after wrestling with an angel was given a new name, Israel, which means “the one who struggled with God.” Knowing the name of a person can give insight into the origin, nature, and the dreams of the person and his or her family.
That’s why Moses asked God this question: What is your name? Knowing God’s name could tell us many things about God!
God said, “I am who I am!” In some translations, God said, “I shall be who I shall be.” Both translations are possible because the Hebrew grammar allows for both translations (“to be” or “to become”). When God says “I am who I am” God is actually refusing to be defined by one word. God is saying, “I am free. I am not defined. I am the Creator, not the created.” When God said, “I shall be who I shall be,” God was saying, “I am the one who causes things to be.” I am the Creator of history.
Though we may desire to define God more narrowly, knowing that God is “I am who I am,” can give us more confidence in God. God is free, undefined, and is present in all aspects of our lives.
Dear God, thank you for the gift of creation and the limitless gift of your presence with us. Amen.
How do my names for God limit my faith?
*From The Upper Room daily devotional guide. Copyright ©2015 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
This and the other devotionals for this Lenten Series can be found at the following link:http://www.thegodwecanknow.com/category/50-devotions/page/5/.