Isaiah 52:6 – “Therefore My people shall know My name; therefore in that day I am the one who is speaking, ‘Here I am.'” NASU
Exodus 6:2-3 – “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.” NASU
The way some people use the name of God in vain you’d think their damming reflected His last name, but it does not. God is not a proper name and on numerous occasions in the Bible people sought to know His name. In studying scripture we find that a name reflected character whereas today a name is simply some cute, catchy handle that parents dream up for the child to identify them. I would venture to say that often there is little thought or prayer as to what to name a child other than finding something unique.
Jacob wrestled with God, his nature changed and subsequently his name as well. In his encounter he inquired of God, “What is Thy Name?” (Genesis 32). In Judges 13 Manoah asked, “What is Thy Name?” In Proverbs 30 the writer asks, “What Is His Name?” In Deuteronomy 6:4 we find the name ‘Elohim-Yahweh’. In Exodus 3 we find Moses saying to the Lord, “The people will ask what is His name? What shall I say?” It is clear that God has a name!
To the Hebrews knowing a name meant more than being acquainted it meant experiential knowledge. “I Am Who I Am” is God’s declaration of His being, power, and character. Yahweh or I AM expresses God’s eternality and embodies past, present, and future or the timelessness of God. In Revelation 1 we find that He is, was, and is to come! It expresses God’s self-existence, His Omnipotence, Omniscience, and Omnipresence. It could rightly be rendered – “I Will Be What I Will Be.” The futuristic implication is “I will be all that is necessary as the occasion arises.” Yahweh is always a personal name and carries a covenantal meaning. It is often used as a hyphenated name to describe various aspects of the character of God.
We find Him described as Jehovah-jireh (provider), Jehovah-Elohim (creator), Jehovah-el Elyon (Most High), Jehovah-adonai (Master), Jehovah-rapha (healer), and Jehovah-shalom (peace). Those are some of the many names describing his acts, ways, and character. It is a fascinating study to search out the names of God for in them we find dimensions of the character and realize not only the promises of God but the power, ability, and willingness of God to fulfill His word.
‘Christ’ is not Jesus’ last name but a description of who He is – Master, Savior, Lord, Redeemer! As we grow to ‘know’ God more we ‘love’ God more and as we ‘love’ Him more we ‘serve’ Him more completely and become better equipped to face life on planet earth.
May God be with you as you go through your day!