The Uncomfortable Claim in God’s Name | Exodus 34:5-8
We're missing something big about God when we miss God's name, when we don't understand the importance of God's name, when God's name doesn't come to our mind when we think about God. When Moses asked God to show him his glory, God basically said “No, it would kill you right now because you’re too sinful. But I’ll do the next best thing. I’ll proclaim to you my name.” Then God gives a description of his name in Exodus 34:5-8. And there is an uncomfortable claim in that description that we’ll talk about in this episode. This is the third and final of a three-episode look into what God says about his name in the book of Exodus. (Listen at 1.5 speed for a better experience.)
Exodus 33:18–20 NIV
18 Then Moses said, “Now show me your glory.” 19 And the LORD said, “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the LORD, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 20 But,” he said, “you cannot see my face, for no one may see me and live.”
Exodus 34:5–8 NIV
Then the LORD came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the LORD. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.” Moses bowed to the ground at once and worshiped.
There are two ways the word Lord appears in your English Old Testament:
1. “Lord” — Lord
This an English translation of the Hebrew Title Adonai (Lord). Ruler. Master. Owner. King.
2. “Lord” — YHWH — Yahweh
This an English translation of the Hebrew name for God — YHWH — which most biblical scholars pronounce YAHWEH.
When Moses first meets God in the burning bush, Moses asks God his name, and God answers…
Exodus 3:14–15 NIV
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘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, the name you shall call me from generation to generation.”
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