Recently, when I (somehow) have more than a few moments, I pick up a copy of Renewing Your Mind by R.C. Sproul from the bookshelf in our bedroom and sit down, finding my bookmark. My favorite part of the book thus far, is a chapter called, ‘God Talk.’ Early on in the book, Sproul challenges us to think about who, when, and what God is. You see, we can’t quite answer any of those questions effectively, but hundreds of times in the Bible, we come back to His name.
Sproul illustrates this by recalling a classroom setting where a young girl has just strolled glowingly into class with a beaming new rock on her finger. To help the class understand his principle, he puts the young girl on the spot. Sproul asks her why she loves her new fiancée. She responds by saying that he’s athletic, which he quickly reciprocates with, “Well, Billy is quite athletic, yet do you love him?” She stammers, ” Well, no.”
“I love him because he’s handsome.” As you can imagine, Sproul had the same response regarding another student in the room. She continues to characterize him as intelligent; however, as the reader has come to expect, Sproul points out another quite intelligent student in class whom she is not in love with. I can imagine her becoming quite taciturn at this point. When she has exhausted all options, she simply says, “He’s just John…I love him because he’s John.”
When we ultimately cannot describe our love for someone, we inevitably revert back to their name. I’m sure you don’t have to wonder too long as to why this is. You see, our names hold the entirety of who we are, and it’s no shock to know that God has many, many names. In fact in scripture, God simply uses His name to describe Himself to us. There is frankly not an earthly language that could ever describe our Lord. He is beyond our language in so many ways.
Then Moses said to God, “Behold, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you.’ Now they may say to me, ‘What is His name?’ What shall I say to them?”
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’
Occasionally an excerpt likes this one from a book or a sermon will just really catch my attention, and I instantly feel the pull to journal it. Such a simple page, honestly because I didn’t have much time, but the study of His name was powerful nonetheless.