Thursday, May 30, 2019

Commentary On Exodus 3:14

"[Exodus] 3:14 I am who I am. This sentence was to be Moses' reply when the Israelites would demand proof that he spoke by the authority of "the God of your fathers" and ask: "What is His name?" In one respect God did not answer the question. He has no name like Osiris, Marduk, or Apollo. No appellation representing human thinking suffices to explain Him. Undefined and undefinable He is different from the idols, whom men could manipulate by using their names in incantations. When me try to comprehend, analyze, dissect Him, they find Him beyond their reach in the simple but inscrutable declaration: I am I (Ex 3:19-20). On the other hand, what God does in revealing Himself in word and deed is His name whereby men know Him. In His self-disclosure He remains the same I am. As He had made Himself known to Israel's ancestors, so He would identify Himself to their descendants by fulfilling the patriarchal promise (16-17). He who is before Abraham was, was sending Moses to His people (Jn 8:58)."

Martin Franzmann and Walter H. Roehrs, Concordia Self-study Commentary [commentary on Exodus], p. 63

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