Read - Exodus 3:14-22 (focus v14-15)
Message - Alan Burke
The name we have our parents likely spent hours, even days and weeks agonising over before they gave it to us. There are some of us imagine though that our parents got one of those baby name books and randomly picked a name. More likely, it was because they knew someone with that name who meant something to them, or it was the name of someone famous or even because of its meaning. My parents I imagined as they gazed down at me, when they first saw my face knew what my name was going to be, not because I was named after one of my dad’s mates which is what I am told, no, I believe it was because they knew the meaning of my name, after all Alan means ‘handsome little rock'.
Just as Moses name had meaning, to draw out (2:10) the name of God had meaning. So when Moses asks God for His name, he is expecting to find out something about this God, just like the names of Egypt’s gods said something about them.
Here God gives Moses His name, but not just a name. God answers Moses and says: “I AM WHO I AM.” He then immediately tells Moses to say to the Israelites that, “I AM” sent him. God then finishes by fully revealing His name saying, “The LORD, literally, Yahweh—the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.”
The Lord was telling Moses, I AM, the unchanging God. I AM, the self-existent God, I AM, creator and sustainer of all that exists, I AM, eternal in his existence, I AM, - Yahweh. Yahweh, the name of God is given to Moses, the personal name of God of your fathers, I Am God.
This was the God that was sending Moses to save His people from their slavery, to bring them into freedom, when Moses returned to Egypt he was to stand before the elders of the people and say “I AM has sent me to you, and the rest of the Exodus is about God at work. Moses’ who came with a sense of inadequacy is reminded once more, that this God, the one before whom he shielded his face before afraid to look at, is one who can and will do what he says. Where Moses was weak, God’s almighty power would be at work. Moses is to go, and the elders would listen (3:18), and they would plunder Egypt as they left (3:22). This was the work of God.
The God that we come before this day is the same God who appeared to Moses in this theophany; I AM, the unchanging God. I AM, the self-existent God, I AM, creator and sustainer of all that exists, I AM, eternal in his existence, I AM, - Yahweh. This is the God whom we come before this day, and this God has made himself even more fully known through the incarnation. For Jesus on many occasions declared himself to be “I AM”. One of such times is in John chapter 8, where Jesus says;
“I tell you the truth, before Abraham was born, I am!” So they (speaking of the religious leaders) picked up stones to throw at him, but Jesus hid himself and went out of the temple. (John 8:58-59). They didn’t pick up stones because they misunderstood what Jesus was saying; they understood all too well. They knew that He was declaring Himself to be Yahweh: He who spoke from the burning bush, the Great I AM.
And it is the name of Jesus that we must call upon, that we are saved. Jesus said ‘I AM, the way the truth and the life, no one goes to the father except through me (Jn 14:6). Once we believe in Jesus, we may come to him with our questions, as Moses did. He will not turn us away. But what he wants us to do is to put our faith in him, going where he sends us and trusting in the promise of his everlasting presence.
Q 81 What is forbidden in the tenth commandment?
The tenth commandment forbiddeth all discontentment with our own estate, (1 Kings 21:4, Esther 5:13, 1 Cor. 10:10) envying or grieving at the good of our neighbour, (Gal. 5:26, James 3:14,16) and all inordinate motions and affections to any thing that is his. (Rom. 7:7–8, Rom. 13:9, Deut. 5:21)