I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. (Exodus 20:2 ESV)
So there’s this journey that I’m on and in that journey I came across this familiar part of a familiar portion of scripture. I want to contemplate it for a few days.
I am the LORD your God …
Personal contact is quite something and God is talking to His people in a personal way. It’s the first time He has spoked to the people as a whole in this personal way. Usually it’s through Moses, but now it’s direct.
I look at those words – LORD – or His name Yahweh – the self-sufficient, self-existent one. The introduction by name to who He is by His voice was certainly an awesome occasion, in fact this whole speech filled the people with such dread that they wanted Moses to do the listening afterwards.
Consider that though – the Self-Sufficient One, the Self-Existent One, He needed no one, no people because He created them, not nature because He created it – He was in need of no one and nothing and everyone and everything came from Him. Here He is making a covenant with His creation – that is quite incredible. He wants to and chooses to talk to those He has chosen.
Dwelling on that further, it remains amazing that He should choose to talk to us – not just talk but relate, not just relate but to make a binding pact between us. He wants to communicate and does so and He starts with the introductions based on the awesome nature of His name. Which then goes on to reaffirm His position as the supreme being. When we talk about God or gods, we refer to something that has prime position in our lives as reflected in the attention and investment of energy and resources and desires in to it.
That’s what we consider when we think of gods. So it seems a bit silly giving such a position to finite things of little to no actual value. That seems a bit silly. What doesn’t seem silly is attributing such a title to the self-sufficient, self-existent one who by His power made everything. It’s fitting that He and He alone claims that title. For His audience it would have further reaffirmed their status and their rescue as we shall note later when we consider what He has done.
For the time being I am just so taken aback by this encounter and the introductions in it. I see myself in that environment and in that atmosphere having such an encounter. Yet the journey is to know Him not just by His name, but by His character. Know Him for who He reveals Himself to be as much as possible so that my life will reflect Him.
For His Name’s Sake
C. L. J. Dryden