God’s Memorial Name
Please Read Ex. 3:3-15, and 6:3. “This is My name for ever, and this is My memorial unto all generations.”
The subject introduced by the above title should encourage our readers to a greater and stronger confidence in the God whom we profess to know, love, and trust. In the Old Testament there are quite a number of memorials, each one containing precious lessons, from which we derive much spiritual help and profit.
Since a memorial is something by which we keep up the memory of a person or an event, surely these Old Testament memorials enable us to recall important things. Let us think of God’s Memorial Name. This is the name by which He wishes to be remembered. Moses asked in Ex. 3:13, “What is Thy name?” “And God said unto Moses, I Am That I Am,” and in vs. 15 He added, This is My name for ever, and this is My memorial to all generations.” Remember that each name of God has its own significance, each one giving a different view of His person, character, and work.
What do we learn from this name, “I Am That I Am”? A great deal, for it has the same import as the name Jehovah, which in turn means, I continue to be, and will be what I continue to be, the Eternal One, the Ever-existing One. God declares, “I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by My name Jehovah was I not known,” (Ex. 6:3). Does He mean that the fathers did not know Him by this name? No, but rather, that to them the significance of this name had not been fully proved by them, but now the opportunity for so doing was before them.
Look at the picture! Israel is under the heel of the cruel oppressor. In order for them to be delivered, the might of Egypt will have to be crushed. Any one attempting such a great feat must reckon to meet all the nation’s marshalled power. God as I Am That I Am comes near and says to Moses, “I am come down to deliver.” Let Egypt muster her forces, bring into exercise all her mightiest engines of war, and pursue the fleeing slaves into the bed of the Red Sea. Yes, she may do all this, but behold, the great I Am bestirs Himself, and looks at them through the cloud: for, “Jehovah overthrew (shook off) the Egyptians in the midst of the sea,” (Ex. 14:27). Hark! While Israel sings, “I will sing unto the Lord (Jehovah) for He hath triumphed gloriously; the horse and his rider hath He thrown into the sea.” Pharoah in his pride had said, “Who is Jehovah that I should obey Him?” He knows now. Israel also knows, and recalls this blessed memorial name. It reminds them of their deliverance from bondage; it means good-bye to Egypt forever with its chains and misery. Here we have glimpsed at a little of the deep, deep meaning of I Am That Am.
Greater wonders are yet to be unfolded to us, for God is waiting to thus prove Himself. Do we need deliverance? Does the enemy harass us Are we hemmed in by circumstance that seem to press so hard that we are almost overwhelmed? If this be so, let us reach out to Him Who bears the memorial name. He waits still to manifest Himself, the Almighty I Am. Look at Him, centuries have rolled their course, and now He stands in the midst of the Churches. (Rev. 1). Listen, as He speaks, “I Am Alpha And Omega The Beginning And The Ending, saith the Lord which is, and which was, and which: is to come,” (vs. 8). Do you recognize Him? Surely, it is the same Blessed One, “Whose years shall not fail,” Hallelujah! This must have been a great comfort to those early believers, many of whom had known the rage of the enemy, and definitely to John, himself, banished on the Isle of Patmos. History gives us a little insight into the suffering and trials of those early saints. Note the pressure of those days as described in Rev. 2:10; there are suggested foul prisons, glaring fires, and cruel tortures. Did these persecutions shake that noble band of heroes? No! Such fierce trials only prove that nothing can crush the great spirit of those who are upheld by the Everpresent, Omnipotent I Am. Let us stand at a later day by the side of John Arkley, confronted by the enemies of Christ, and with nothing before him but the stake, and the burning faggot. Did he surrender when asked to recant? Listen to that heroic soul, “What! Recant? If I had as many lives as hairs in my head, I would give them all to the fire before I would lose Christ.”
I turn from that noble army of heroes, and I thank God for that day when they will be rewarded with “the crown of life” and with the “well done” of the very best of Masters, the Lord Jesus. In these favoured lands, so far, we have not been called upon to tread this martyr path; nevertheless, trials abound. The enemy, though he may have changed his tactics, is still the same inveterate foe of both God and His beloved people. He will do his utmost to harass and perplex, in order to drive them into a state of despair and thus paralyze them and render them useless in the service of God. Let us remember that God permits trials to enter our lives; yea, betimes plans them, so that we might get to know Him better and prove His wondrous power to deliver. Yea, to learn something of the power of His memorial name, I Am That I Am. Perhaps you are saying, “If only the writer knew how steep the hill is that I am trying to climb at this minute, and how heavy the burden that crushes me down almost to the point of despair.” Indeed, someone may say, “Do you know anything of disappointed hopes, such as lie deep in the heart of parents whose children, the objects of much prayer, have turned their backs on the Gospel? Children, who alas, are now taken up with the fleeting pleasures of a world, fast ripening for judgment.”
These pages might reach some who, daily, feel the burden of ill health. They know the meaning of the dragging hours of pain and the long nights of vigil. Others, there are, who could recount at length the peculiar testings and crosses that seem to be their daily portion. The other day I shook the hand of a brother who had just emerged from the dread ordeal of unjust imprisonment for Christ’s sake. He had passed through deep experiences, the very narration of which seemed like a frightful nightmare to us, but for him it had been horrible actuality. How did he appear? Radiant with the joy of God. What brought him through this crucial test? He was sustained by the almighty arms of I Am That I Am.
Tell me, tried, oppressed, and burdened fellow believer, are you prepared to put your case into the hands of the Almighty Deliverer, the I Am? If you are, you will experience His grace and power, for He has declared, “This is My name for ever, and this is My memorial to all generations.”
“Jehovah! That glorious name,
Reveals His redeeming power.
His saints, all the blessings, may claim
To comfort when trials lower.”
There is a humility that manifests itself in graciousness; a lowliness that is the essence of peace; a self-denial that radiates the very light of heaven; but, alas! the beauty of these, like that of some exotic bloom, withers under the chilly touch of carnality.
--S of M.