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Elkmont Baptist Church
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Calling on the Name of the Lord: I AM
God's name is very important. His name is holy, pure, and represents His character and love towards us. Yet I often hear prayers end in "amen" without mentioning even the phrase "in His name I pray", or "in name of Jesus I pray", or something similar. The Scripture is full of examples of men calling on the name of God in their prayers. Here are a few examples:
May God bless you all!
Abraham called on the
of the Lord (Genesis 12:8; 13:4).
The Lord proclaimed His own
before Moses (Exodus 33:19; 34:5).
Isreal was warned against profaning the
of the Lord
of the Lord was not to be taken in vain (Exodus 20:7;
The priests of Isreal were to minister in the
of the Lord
of God is called "wonderful" in Isaiah 9:6.
To call on the
of the Lord was to worship Him as God
(Leviticus 18:21; 22:2, 32).
(Deuteronomy 18:5; 21:5).
(Genesis 21:33; 26:25).
Until He returns:
So - what is His Name?
In this series of articles, I want to explore the various names of the Lord. When we pray and call upon His name, it is good to know on whom we are calling. Does that mean that there are many gods? NO! It does mean that He has many names, and that each has been given to us so that we can pray more specifically and use one of the many characteristics that is embodied in our God. Let's get started.
And Moses said unto God, Behold,
I come unto the children of Israel, and
shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What
his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto
Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. And God said moreover unto Moses, 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
my name forever, and this
my memorial unto all generations.
I AM H1961:
"hayah . . . A primitive root; . . . to
, that is,
(-come, accomplished, committed, like), break, cause, come (to pass), continue, do, faint, fall, + follow, happen, X have, last, pertain, quit (one-) self, require, X use" (Strong's H1961).
"'asher . . . A primitive relative pronoun (of every gender and number);
; also (as adverb and conjunction)
, etc . . ." (Strong's H834).
I AM THAT I AM
" in Hebrew is "
HAYAH ASHER HAYAH
HE WHO IS
This is the name revealed to Moses when Moses asked what name he should give to the Israelites if they asked what His name was. This name is closely related to
(Yahweh or Jehovah). "I AM HE WHO EXIST" is also a possible translation, which makes Him the "Self-Existent One." We are human beings; but God is simply "Being", meaning He had no beginning and He will have no ending. God told Moses to tell them, "I AM that I AM", or I am the Self-Existent, Uncreated One - meaning that "I have always been and will always be." Some Hebrew scholars believe it was spelled EHYEH, but no one can say for certain. The pronunciation of this sacred name has been lost in time. It could also be stated as, "I AM HE WHO IS" (Exodus 3:14). The Hebrew verb form of
is "to be" so this is closely related to
We need to be careful as we read Scripture that we don't confuse the 800+ references that have "I
" in the verse as God declaring His name. For example, Genesis 15:7
says, "And he said unto him, I
the LORD that brought thee out of Ur of the
Chaldees, to give thee this land to inherit it." Note that the word
is both italic and
gray text (in the King James), indicating that the word
is implied and not actually
is the Hebrew word
- a totally different word from
many of these instances, the Scripture says, "I
the Lord . . ." which is in Hebrew
In Exodus 6:7, we find the same construct "I will be" - the whole verse says: "And I will take you to me for a people, and
I will be
to you a God: and ye shall know that I
the LORD your God, which bringeth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians" (bold added). So we see a slight extension of the name to include not only
I AM WHO
I WILL BE WHO YOU NEED ME TO BE
This is the same title that Jesus used many times in the great "I AM's" during His earthly ministry. In the New Testament, we find the "I am" phrase as the Greek word
several times. Here is a list:
Matthew 11:29: "Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for
I am meek and
lowly in heart:
and ye shall find rest unto your souls" (bold added).
John 6:35: "And Jesus said unto them,
I am the bread of life:
he that cometh
to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst" (bold added).
John 8:12: "Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying,
I am the light of the
he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light
John 8:58: "Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you,
was, I am
" (bold added).
John 10:9: "
I am the door:
by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and
shall go in and out, and find pasture" (bold added).
John 10:11: "
I am the good shepherd:
the good shepherd giveth his life for the
sheep" (bold added).
John 10:36: "Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said,
I am the Son of God
?" (bold added)
John 11:25: "Jesus said unto her,
I am the resurrection, and the life:
believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:" (bold added)
John 14:6: "Jesus saith unto him,
I am the way, the truth, and the life:
cometh unto the Father, but by me" (bold added).
John 15:5: "
I am the [true] vine
the branches: He that abideth in me,
and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing" (bold added).
John 18:5-6: "They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them,
he had said unto them,
, they went backward, and fell to the ground"
Revelation 1:11: "Saying,
I am Alpha and Omega,
the first and the last: and,
What thou seest, write in a book, and send
unto the seven churches which
are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and into Thyatira, and into Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea" (bold added).
Revelation 22:13: "
I am Alpha and Omega,
the beginning and the end, the first
and the last" (bold added).
Revelation 22:16: "I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches.
I am the root and the offspring of David,
the bright and
" (bold added).
As we all learn to "call on the name of the Lord," let us remember that one of his names is the great "I Am." He is who we need Him to be for us - not what we want - what we need!
. And Judas, also, which betrayed him, stood with them. As soon then as
(always emphatic, and not a mere copula or auxiliary): - beacon, X altogether, be
Jesus declared Himself as
of life" (bold added).
[computer software] . Franklin, TN: Equipping Ministries Foundation. (Original work published 1890)
Strong's Hebrew and Greek Dictionaries.
Meyers, R. (2005). e-Sword.
Translation could be: "I AM HE WHO IS", Tell them that
there. The word