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Family and Friends is my everyday journal. Captain's Log is where I pontificate on religion and politics.

Monday, March 20, 2023

Monday Musings: I Am That I Am


I may not do this every week. Sometimes I get an idea in my head and need to say something or vent.
Sermon yesterday at church the pastor preached on the Origins of God. He used the part in Exodus with Moses at the burning bush. Moses asks who he is to say that sent him and God answers, "I Am that I Am." KJV. 
He went on to preach that in a place of many gods that the people needed to know God's name. It's "I Am."
In Hebrew is YHWH pronounced Yaweh, and changed in translation to Jehovah.
Somehow everyone accepts this, but as a teenager after having read The Cross and the Switchblade, even watched the movie starring Pat Boone and Erick Estrada, I read a number of David Wilkerson's books. They were popular at the time, and he came to Albuquerque, and I heard him in person.
The only book of Wilkerson's that truly touched my life in a meaningful way was this one. Man Have I Got Problems.
I was in high school, and I really did have problems, all teenagers have problems!
It's a short book, it read like a sermon, and he helped me look at problems in light of Paul's ordeal in a storm on the way to Rome. He described all the different measures the crew on the ship would take to keep the ship afloat. Ride into it, batten down the hatches and ride it out and when nothing worked jump overboard but know that God is always with you. The best advice I've ever heard a preacher give. 
Then he said something that has always stuck with me. Mentioned this passage in Exodus and said, something to the effect of that going to the Hebrews and saying "I Am" sent me wouldn't get him very far. But if he said, "I am deliverance," the people would understand.
Retired English teacher in me can say with authority that the verb "am" is a transitive verb, it needs a direct object to make the sentence or idea have meaning.
The great "I am," as it's called is God saying, "I am what you need." The Hebrews needed deliverance from slavery, they needed to be rescued from Pharoah's army, they needed food and water in the desert etc. God provided that for them.
In my life this helped me through tough times. Going through a painful divorce, God was my comfort. Changing my life goal of being a missionary, I became a teacher and treated my students as my mission field. Other problems I've faced, and God was always there to deliver me and my family through those times.
This is the meaning of "I Am."
I've heard many preachers speak from this passage and this is the only book or sermon that explains this.
It was shortly after I read this book that David Wilkerson came to speak and his sermon was on the Second Coming and what he called, "The Evacuation."
What a shame that someone who had done so much good in pointing the masses to the Love of God, and how that can change their lives, to turn away from that and focus on fire insurance and doom and gloom.

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