What’s your name? That seems like a relatively simple question. If someone asks, you probably have a ready answer. Maybe you have a few nicknames that complicate things a bit, but generally this is not one of the more challenging questions you’ll face today.
But when Moses asked God for his name, he got a little more than he bargained for.
In Exodus 3:14-15, we find a fascinating exchange between Moses and God about God’s proper name. Moses is about to go speak to the people in Egypt, and he wants to know what to tell them if they ask for God’s name. And this is God’s response.
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.”* And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people 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 thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.
So Moses asks for God’s name, and he gets three different responses? What’s going on here?