One of the greatest debates of all time concerns God’s name and how you pronounce it. Out of this debate has grown the Sacred Name movement. Like in any movement there are many groups who believe they have the right spelling and pronunciation of God’s name.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with this. There are people who genuinely feel they are disrespecting God if they don’t get it right. They want to be the best child they can be for their Heavenly Father. And that’s okay.
The problem comes in when these groups feel like their way is the only way. If you don’t say it exactly like them then you’re wrong and don’t belong to God. Now we have stepped into an area of judgment on something we may not actually know.
This causes chaos and all chaos belongs to the enemy. If you are unfriending people, shutting people out of your life, or speaking down to people because they don’t pronounce God’s name the way you do, then you are a friend of the enemy. You are spreading chaos into an already chaotic world.
Yeshua said people will know we are his disciples by the love we show one another. If we are hating our brothers and sisters for not being where we are spiritually, then we are declaring to the world we are not Yeshua’s disciples. Thus, we are not a part of God’s family.
Another point is God is a God of order. He doesn’t cause chaos. He brings order to chaos.
Now let’s look at this week’s Torah portion starting in the book of Exodus.
I AM WHO I AM – YHWH
At the start of Exodus God is telling Moses He wants him to go and deliver His people from the hand of Pharoah. Moses tries to come up with some excuses why this is a bad idea. God counteracts all of them.
In Exodus 3 Moses asks God who should he say sent him to deliver the people. In Exodus 3:14-15 God answers him, “I AM WHO I AM.” Then He tells Moses, “Tell the people of Israel YHWH has sent me to you.”
And this is where the debate begins. Should we say, “I AM WHO I AM” or “YHWH?” We act like we must choose one or the other. But do we? What’s wrong with saying both? God did.
Draw Close to Me
God started the reply with “I AM WHO I AM.” I believe He did this for two reasons. The first has to do with their relationship with Him. This generation of the children of Israel were born and raised in Egypt. They grew up surrounded by many gods with Pharaoh acting like a god-king. They grew up in slavery, being hated by the Egyptians for no reason.
They may have heard stories about the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He must have seemed like a legend or a myth to them. They never experienced the flood, the famine, or the strategic plan of God using Joseph to keep them alive. They just plain didn’t know Him for themselves.
By using this long version of His name, I believe God wanted Israel to know He was whatever they needed Him to be. He was their Deliver, Salvation, Strength, Rescuer, Provider, and a host of other things. They didn’t need many gods. He could do for them what all of those gods put together couldn’t do for them, starting with deliverance.
He had to show them He was the true God of Israel as well as the world. No one could outdo Him. Not even Pharaoh.
This was the time for them to get reacquainted with their God. It was time to draw close to Him and trust Him.
Draw Closer to Me
Then He turns around and tells them His personal name – YHWH. He wanted them to know He had a real name just like those other gods. He wasn’t some far off god that couldn’t be touched. They didn’t have to be confused as to which god to go to for which particular situation.
There was only one God they needed to draw closer to because He heard them and was willing to deliver them. Only one God they needed to praise and worship. This God was YHWH, the supreme being of the universe.
No Debate About God’s Name
YHWH is who He is and will be who He will be. There’s no debate about this. He is everything you need, want, and desire. He is the ultimate source of life. That is who He is.
It doesn’t matter if you spell His name that same way another person does. It doesn’t matter if you pronounce His name differently from someone else. What matters is that you pour your heart and soul into Him. He knows if you’re talking to Him or someone else.
Give Him some credit. He is not stupid. He actually created everything you see and don’t see, everything you know and don’t know, and everything you understand and don’t understand. He sees, knows, and understands all things. You don’t.
So stop debating and start having peace in Him.