Exodus 3:14

14 God said to Moses, "I am who I am. Here is what you must say to the Israelites. Tell them, 'I AM has sent me to you.' "

Exodus 3:14 Meaning and Commentary

Exodus 3:14

And God said unto Moses, I am that I am
This signifies the real being of God, his self-existence, and that he is the Being of beings; as also it denotes his eternity and immutability, and his constancy and faithfulness in fulfilling his promises, for it includes all time, past, present, and to come; and the sense is, not only I am what I am at present, but I am what I have been, and I am what I shall be, and shall be what I am. The Platonists and Pythagoreans seem to have borrowed their (to on) from hence, which expresses with them the eternal and invariable Being; and so the Septuagint version here is (o wn) : it is said F26, that the temple of Minerva at Sais, a city of Egypt, had this inscription on it,

``I am all that exists, is, and shall be.''
And on the temple of Apollo at Delphos was written (ei) , the contraction of (eimi) , "I am" F1. Our Lord seems to refer to this name, ( John 8:58 ) , and indeed is the person that now appeared; and the words may be rendered, "I shall be what I shall be" F2 the incarnate God, God manifest in the flesh: thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto
you;
or as the Targum of Jonathan has it,
``I am he that is, and that shall be.''
This is the name Ehjeh, or Jehovah, Moses is empowered to make use of, and to declare, as the name of the Great God by whom he was sent; and which might serve both to encourage him, and strengthen the faith of the Israelites, that they should be delivered by him.
FOOTNOTES:

F26 Phutarch. de Iside & Osir.
F1 Plato in Timaeo.
F2 (hyha rva hyha) "ero qui ero", Pagninus, Montanus, Fagius, Vatablus.

Exodus 3:14 In-Context

12 God said, "I will be with you. I will give you a miraculous sign. It will prove that I have sent you. When you have brought the people out of Egypt, all of you will worship me on this mountain."
13 Moses said to God, "Suppose I go to the people of Israel. Suppose I say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you.' Suppose they ask me, 'What is his name?' Then what should I tell them?"
14 God said to Moses, "I am who I am. Here is what you must say to the Israelites. Tell them, 'I AM has sent me to you.' "
15 God also said to Moses, "Say to the Israelites, 'The LORD is the God of your fathers. He has sent me to you. He is the God of Abraham. He is the God of Isaac. And he is the God of Jacob.' My name will always be The LORD. Remember me by that name for all time to come.
16 "Go. Gather the elders of Israel together. Say to them, 'The Lord, the God of your fathers, appeared to me. He is the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. " 'He said, "I have watched over you. I have seen what the Egyptians have done to you.

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