10 “Therefore, come now, and I will send you to Pharaoh, so that you may bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt.”
11 ¶ But Moses said to God, “Who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the sons of Israel out of Egypt?”
12 And He said, “Certainly I will be with you, and this shall be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall worship God at this mountain.”
13 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?”
14 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.’”
15 God, furthermore, said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘The LORD, 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.
In verse 13 Moses told God that he was going to the sons of Israel and say that God had sent him. Moses then said that Israel might ask what God’s name was. “What shall I say to them,” he asked. God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM; Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” In chapter six God speaks the following to Moses:
1 ¶ Then the LORD said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do to Pharaoh; for under compulsion he will let them go, and under compulsion he will drive them out of his land.”
2 God spoke further to Moses and said to him, “I am the LORD;
3 and I appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, as God Almighty, but by My name, LORD, I did not make Myself known to them.
The above verses are very important. God told Moses He appeared to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob as God Almighty. “God Almighty” is an expression of El Shaddai. When God wants to reveal a certain aspect of His nature to us, He reveals that aspect of Himself through the name He calls Himself. El Shaddai means the Great Breasted One, or the All Sufficient One. God revealed Himself to the Patriarchs as the God who would meet all their needs. But He was not known to them as Jehovah. Jehovah is “I Am.” He is the God who manifests Himself in the present. This revelation of Himself exceeds El Shaddai. Jehovah implies a God who not only meets our needs, but interjects Himself into the “right now” of our lives. Jehovah becomes an ever present personal encounter. This revelation of the Lord becomes the means by which His nature is established in us, not theoretically, but practically. It is the revelation Jehovah that interacts with us and confronts everything in our lives that must conform to His Lordship.
One might ask, “Where is Jesus in all of this?” After all, we are not living in the Old Testament. There is a significant encounter with the Jews that Jesus has in John 8.
54 Jesus answered, “If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing; it is My Father who glorifies Me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God’;
55 and you have not come to know Him, but I know Him; and if I say that I do not know Him, I will be a liar like you, but I do know Him and keep His word.
56 “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.”
57 So the Jews said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?”
58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.”
Here is an often overlooked revelation of Jesus Christ. He is expressing the same revelation of God as was revealed to Moses. As previously mentioned, each name God gives Himself reveals as aspect of His nature to us. The angel of the Lord told Joseph that the child in Mary’s womb was conceived of the Holy Spirit and to name Him Jesus, because He would save His people from their sins. Jesus means “Jehovah is Salvation.” Thus, God’s redemptive nature is revealed through Jesus’ name. Most of Christianity relates to the son of God as Jesus. He is their savior. This is the name they know Him by. But He also revealed Himself as “I AM.” We must know the Lord, not only as our savior and redeemer, but as the one who interjects Himself into the depths of our lives. It is only I AM that can bring us experientially out of the bondage of Adam. This is why this name was given to Moses prior to Israel’s deliverance from Egypt. Receiving Him as “I Am” brings us into the practicality of sonship. It is opening our hearts to a God that will search Jerusalem with lamps (Zep. 1:12).