February 23 I Thursday
“God said to Moses, ‘I AM WHO I AM.’” —Exodus 3:14
Take a comparison between Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” and John 1:1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” These two verses may sound similar but are two very different statements. Genesis 1:1 is about the beginning, which is time-related, where there was a beginning and in the beginning, God created. John 1:1, however, speaks of a past tense in the beginning because “In the beginning was (past tense) the Word, the Word was (past tense) with God.” In other words, when the beginning began, the Word was already there and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. This shows that God predates time because time is a created thing and not an eternal thing.
Someone once said, “Time is like a row of books on a bookshelf,” where God, who is outside, can come pull a book out at one point of the shelf and put it back, then go and take one out of another side, put that back and go back over here. This illustration provides a visual on how God stands outside of time—past, present, and future—and has the ability to go back and forth so to speak. Nobody created God; He is self-existent. He will never end and never die. This is why when Moses asked for the name of the God, God responded, “I AM WHO I AM” (Exodus 3:14). God’s name is eternally present tense because He is without beginning and without end. He lives in the eternal “now.”
The marvelous thing is that we are called to share in God’s eternal nature. What is eternal life? Jesus says in John 17:3, “Now this is eternal life: that they know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.” The Christian life—eternal life—says Jesus, is to know God and to know Christ. The beauty is that God has given us the understanding to know Him. John writes, “We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know Him who is true” (1 John 5:20). Additionally, Paul prays in Ephesians 1:17, “I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better.” We cannot know God and know Christ simply by some human mental activity, but we know Him by revelation because the Spirit reveals Him to us.
Prayer: Dear I AM, You are the God of this universe that surpasses all time with no beginning, middle, or end. Thank You for the gift of eternal life that I can have through knowing and believing in You.