‘I Am that I Am’, Genesis 3:14, is the most important name in the Bible. Not only for God the Father, but Jesus the Son used the powerful name, I Am. A name that is a statement without dispute, as seen in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Hebrew Names Have Meaning
Hebrews names reflected the character of who a person was. Jacob, meaning usurper, trickster, supplanter, was changed to Israel, the perseverer, fighter with God, God will prevail, Genesis 33:28.
Abram, exalted father, became Abraham, father of a great number. This pointed to Abraham as a man of faith in God. He entered into an everlasting covenantal relationship with God, Genesis 17:5. This is important, as it tells us that believers in Christ partake of an everlasting covenantal relationship with God the Father.
The Israelites knew God as Yahweh, YHWH, the ever-present God with and for His people. In Scripture God has many titles such as Father, Almighty, King, Everlasting. Each title revealed His many roles or attributes. The name Yahweh expressed His unique love and care for His people.
Yahweh is a covenantal name. It indicated God’s authority and personal presence in relation to His creation and His chosen people. This is a special relationship with Israel that will continue into eternity.
I Am That I Am
When Moses asked God for His name, Exodus 3:14, God answered, ‘I Am that I Am’. This highlighted God’s dynamic and self-existence in His own right. A declaration of ‘I exist’. He is the source of all existence and life and all-sufficient in Himself.
I Am expresses the eternal, self-existent, non-changing nature of God and His divine sovereignty. He alone has the power to save, redeem, sanctify and justify fallen humanity. He will also be the ultimate Judge, Isaiah 33:22.
The Power of I Am
A beautiful demonstration of the power of I Am is seen in the Garden of Gethsemane. Judas Iscariot came with scribes, elders and chief priests to arrest Jesus. They were accompanied with between 300-600 armed Roman soldiers. When they said they were looking for Him, He answered simply, “I Am”.
These weapon-brandishing men and pompous Temple authorities fell backwards onto the ground, John 18:1-11.
The I Am’s of Jesus
Jesus used the term ‘I Am’, revealing His divine identity and authority. He declared ‘I Am from above, I Am not of this world. If you don’t believe that I Am you shall die in your sins, John 8:23. Before Abraham was, I Am’, John 8:58.
Jesus also made seven statements that declared His divine mission. They revealed His authority and unique place in the redemption and salvation of humanity.
I Am the bread of life, John 6:35. I Am the light of the world, John 8:12. I Am the door, John 10:9. I Am the good shepherd, John 10:10. I Am the resurrection and the life, John 22:25. I Am the way, the truth and the life, John 14:6. I Am the true vine, John 15:1.
I Am that I Am is Outside Time
That God called Himself I Am is of great comfort to those who have accepted that the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ on Calvary. God lives outside time, where He is ‘I was, I am and I w[ ill be’, all at the same time. This is a difficult concept to comprehend as we live in time.
The Apostle Paul wrote, ‘We are seated in heavenly places,’ Ephesians 2:6. God desires to live eternally in a personal covenant relationship with us, through the shed blood of His son, Jesus Christ. This also gives us direct contact with God the Father, John 16;23.24, and mades us joint heirs with the Son, Romans 8:17.
I Am that I Am has given to those who will believe, access to all the spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus, Ephesians 1:3. In Christ the believer is loved, chosen, redeemed, forgiven, freed, sanctified, and justified.
We are promised an eternal inheritance with all the riches, glories and character of our Saviour. God’s love, patience and mercy is forever, as He casts sin, that is repented of, into His ocean of forgetfulness, Psalm 103:12.
God gave His angels the gift of free will, just as He gave man a free will. A third of the angels, Revelation 12:4, were led astray by the most beautiful angel of all, Lucifer, light bearer, Isaiah 14:12. He became known as Satan, accuser, adversary. At Calvary Jesus did battle with the arch enemy of man, Colossians 2:15. Satan knows that he and his cohorts will have eternal damnation, Revelation 20:10. Unlike fallen man, angels will not be redeemed, 2 Peter 2:4.
Lucifer/Satan did not have the power of the great I Am. He could only use the term ‘I will’, Isaiah 14:13-15, as portrayed through the King of Tyre. Satan is merely a counterfeiter with the desire to take God’s place.
The prophet Isaiah revealed more of the meaning of the name I Am that I Am in the titles given to Jesus. ‘The government shall be upon his shoulder. His name shall be called, Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father. The Prince of Peace. The increase of His government and peace, there shall be no end’, Isaiah 9:6.7.
I Am had, has and does have an everlasting plan that is Alpha to Omega, the beginning and the end. God knows the end from the beginning, Isaiah 46:10.
That is the reason He didn’t throw Adam away and create another being. God never gives up on the sinner but offers the way of redemption, John 14:6. God sees the end from the beginning, with names written in the Book of Life before the foundation of the world, Revelation 17:8. Overcomes hold a special place in the Kingdom of God for all eternity because of I Am that I Am. Lift up your head for your redemption draws nigh, Luke 21;28. This world of utter chaos is in the Last Days. Jesus Christ alone is your answer.