Day 29: Knowing the Name of God (205-211)
Yesterday we started talking about God
I believe in God
I believe in God the Father
THAT IS SO INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT!!
We ended yesterday with the reality that God reveals His NAME
Today we take the next steps
What is the name that God reveals Himself as?
If we go all the way back to The Book of Exodus, God reveals His name to Moses at the burning bush
We KNOW that story
We LOVE that story
We are SO GRATEFUL for that story
God reveals His name as the TETRAGRAMMATON
Which is almost unpronounceable
We don’t necessarily know how you would say it
It has been translated in some ways “YAHWEH”
It has been translated in other ways “Jehovah”
We also know that the name is “I AM HE WHO IS”
Or “I AM WHO I AM”
Or “I AM WHO AM”
It reveals how a name makes oneself ACCESSIBLE and invites into RELATIONSHIP
Paragraph 206 says, “This divine name is mysterious just as God is mystery. It is as once a name revealed and something like the refusal of a name…”
THANK YOU CATECHISM!!
WE APPRECIATE THAT!!
THAT HITS OUR HEART RIGHT!!
We will also talk about the ways the Lord God has revealed His name but also how God’s people have CARED FOR the Lord God’s name
And have avoided using it IRREVERENTLY
And having only wanted to use it in the most sacred of way
Also how God also reveals His IDENTITY
He is MERCIFUL
He is GRACIOUS
So since we're talking about God today, let's talk to God today
Prayer by Fr. Mike: “Father in heaven, you've revealed your heart. You have revealed your name because you want us to be in relationship with you. You want us to share our hearts with you, as you have shared your heart with us. And so this day, we come before you. And we ask that as we call upon your name, you answer quickly, you answer fully, and you help us. Help us to understand who it is you are. Help us to love who you are. And help us to glorify who you are in this life so we can be happy with you forever in the next. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen”
OH MY GOSH YOU GUYS!!
I’m going to let Fr. Mike pat himself on the back here and not write down everything he says this once 😉
We get to have the story of God Revealing His Name again
Sometimes we are just given the facts
Sometimes when it comes to God it’s like, “Ok God is One. God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. God revealed Himself to Moses.”
The way in which The Catechism is unfolding these facts is by reminding us of the story
THAT IS SO SO SO IMPORTANT!!
If we forget the fact that God has entered into our EXISTENCE
God has entered into our LIVES
God created EXISTENCE because He is EXISTENCE HIMSELF
He has put himself into OUR STORY
Especially in the face of our unfaithfulness
And our STUPIDITY
And our FOOLISHNESS
God has revealed HIS OWN FAITHFULNESS
AND HIS WISDOM
AND HIS STEADFASTNESS
IT IS SO REMARKABLE!!
Once again, here is the story of God revealing Himself to Moses in the burning bush
Moses asks, “If I am going to go to the people of Israel here, I’m going to tell them that you are going to do all this stuff. What shall I say to them? Who are you? What’s your name?”
God reveals the TETRAGRAMMATON
THE SACRED NAME
THE HOLY NAME OF GOD
I AM HE WHO IS
I AM WHO I AM
I AM WHO AM
His name is INEFFABLE
Paragraph 206 says, “He is the God who makes himself close to men.”
Paragraph 207 says, “By revealing his name God at the same time reveals his faithfulness which is from everlasting to everlasting…”
Paragraph 208 says, “Faced with God’s fascinating and mysterious presence, man discovers his own insignificance.”
The Catechism gives three examples of this
Moses takes off his sandals and veils his face
Isaiah cries out, “Woe is me! I am lost…”
Peter says, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” (I love this scene from The Chosen!! https://youtu.be/hWGCkovAUWM?t=175 😃)
OH MY GOSH YOU GUYS!!
Jesus is the SAME GOD
The God of the NEW TESTAMENT is the God of the OLD TESTAMENT
Sometimes we can think that the God of the Old Testament is REALLY INTIMIDATING
Sometimes we can think that the God of the New Testament is NOT INTIMIDATING
If we realize the identity of Jesus and our own identity, we would say the EXACT SAME THINGS
We would be like Moses and take of our shoes and hide our face
We would be like Isaiah and say, “Woe is me! For I am lost.”
We would say the EXACT SAME THING as Peter
Remember after Jesus has risen from the dead in the Book of Revelation the Beloved Disciple John is on the island of Patmos
He just got done celebrating Mass, we assume, because it is the Lord’s Day
Revelation 1:17, “When I caught sight of him, I fell down at his feet as though dead.”
When we realize WHO GOD IS
When we realize WHO WE ARE
We realize OUR OWN INSIGNIFICANCE
We realize HIS GLORY
We realize HIS FAITHFULNESS
We realize OUR UNFAITHFULNESS
AT THE SAME TIME…
John says, “We shall…reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.”
We can be intimidated of course
Here is GOD and we are NOT GOD
AT THE SAME TIME…
We are reminded that He is the God who LOVES US
He is the God who DRAWS CLOSE TO US
THIS IS INCREDIBLE!!
In just a few short paragraphs, The Catechism is reminding us how INEFFABLE and INCOMPREHENSIBLE God is
MORE THAN WE IMAGINE
BETTER THAN ANYTHING WE CAN EVER DREAM OF
HOW INSIGNIFICANT WE ARE
AT THE SAME TIME…
God is MERCIFUL
God is GRACIOUS
Paragraph 209 says, “Out of respect for the holiness of God, the people of Israel do not pronounce his name.”
This is why in some Bible translations instead of having the sacred name YHWH they use LORD in ALL CAPS
If you see LORD in your Bible, it was a replacement for the actual name of the Lord God
For example, when Elijah is having that showdown with the prophets of Baal
At some point the fire comes down from Heaven and consumes the sacrifice
The people cry out, “The LORD is God!”
That can be confusing
Are they saying, “God is God!”?
They are saying, “YHWH is God!”
THE ONLY ONE
Not just “our brand of God”
THIS GOD who has revealed Himself to us
In Hebrew LORD is ADONAI
In Greek LORD is KYRIOS
Here in English it is LORD
The last thing is REMARKABLE
Paragraph 211 says, “By giving his life to free us from sin, Jesus reveals that he himself bears the divine name: “When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you will realize that I Am.’”
Jesus makes it VERY CLEAR that he is claiming DIVINITY
He is claiming IDENTITY
THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!!
He is NOT claiming to be ANOTHER GOD
He is claiming that HE IS THE SAME GOD
THE ONE GOD
“I am the SAME GOD” when He says, “I AM”
THAT IS REMARKABLE!!
That is one of the many foundations for our understanding
Not only is the Father God
BUT ALSO JESUS CHRIST THE SON IS CO-EQUAL, CO-ETERNAL, SAME GOD!!
SO IS THE HOLY SPIRIT!!
MAN OH MAN!!
Keep it up!!
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!
Scripture References & Reflections
- compiled by Andrew Adamany
Bible Translation - RSVCE
CCC 205 "God is the God of the fathers, the One who had called and guided the patriarchs in their wanderings. He is the faithful and compassionate God who remembers them and his promises…"
"And we bring you the good news that what God promised to the fathers, this he has fulfilled to us their children by raising Jesus; as also it is written in the second psalm,
‘Thou art my Son,
today I have begotten thee.’
And as for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he spoke in this way,
‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.’
Therefore he says also in another psalm,
‘Thou wilt not let thy Holy One see corruption.’"
"he comes to free their descendants from slavery. He is the God who, from beyond space and time, can do this and wills to do it, the God who will put his almighty power to work for this plan."
"Jesus then said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham, and have never been in bondage to any one. How is it that you say, ‘You will be made free’?”
Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, every one who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not continue in the house for ever; the son continues for ever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed."
2 Peter 3:8–9
"But do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow about his promise as some count slowness, but is forbearing toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance."
CCC 206 "In revealing his mysterious name, YHWH ("I AM HE WHO IS", "I AM WHO AM" or "I AM WHO I AM"), God says who he is and by what name he is to be called. This divine name is mysterious just as God is mystery. It is at once a name revealed and something like the refusal of a name, and hence it better expresses God as what he is - infinitely above everything that we can understand or say: he is the "hidden God", his name is ineffable, and he is the God who makes himself close to men."
"No one has ever seen God; the only Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has made him known."
"Truly, thou art a God who hidest thyself,
O God of Israel, the Savior."
CCC 207 "By revealing his name God at the same time reveals his faithfulness which is from everlasting to everlasting, valid for the past…"
"And he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.”
"as for the future…"
"But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and bring the sons of Israel out of Egypt?” He said, “But I will be with you; and this shall be the sign for you, that I have sent you: when you have brought forth the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God upon this mountain.”
"God, who reveals his name as "I AM", reveals himself as the God who is always there, present to his people in order to save them."
"and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.”
CCC 208 "Faced with God's fascinating and mysterious presence, man discovers his own insignificance. Before the burning bush, Moses takes off his sandals and veils his face in the presence of God's holiness…"
"When the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here am I.” Then he said, “Do not come near; put off your shoes from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” And he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God."
"Before the glory of the thrice-holy God, Isaiah cries out:"
"In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and his train filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim; each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory.”
And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”
Before the divine signs wrought by Jesus, Peter exclaims:
"And when he had ceased speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” And Simon answered, “Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets.” And when they had done this, they enclosed a great shoal of fish; and as their nets were breaking, they beckoned to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord.” For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the catch of fish which they had taken; and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; henceforth you will be catching men.” And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him."
But because God is holy, he can forgive the man who realizes that he is a sinner before him:
"How can I give you up, O Ephraim!
How can I hand you over, O Israel!
How can I make you like Admah!
How can I treat you like Zeboiim!
My heart recoils within me,
my compassion grows warm and tender.
I will not execute my fierce anger,
I will not again destroy Ephraim;
for I am God and not man,
the Holy One in your midst,
and I will not come to destroy."
"The apostle John says likewise:
1 John 3:20
"By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything."
1 John 1:9
"If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
CCC 210 "After Israel's sin, when the people had turned away from God to worship the golden calf, God hears Moses' prayer of intercession and agrees to walk in the midst of an unfaithful people, thus demonstrating his love.
"And the Lord said to Moses, “Go down; for your people, whom you brought up out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves; they have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them; they have made for themselves a molten calf, and have worshiped it and sacrificed to it, and said, ‘These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!’ ” And the Lord said to Moses, “I have seen this people, and behold, it is a stiff-necked people; now therefore let me alone, that my wrath may burn hot against them and I may consume them; but of you I will make a great nation."
But Moses besought the Lord his God, and said, “O Lord, why does thy wrath burn hot against thy people, whom thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? Why should the Egyptians say, ‘With evil intent did he bring them forth, to slay them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth’? Turn from thy fierce wrath, and repent of this evil against thy people. Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, thy servants, to whom thou didst swear by thine own self, and didst say to them, ‘I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have promised I will give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it for ever.’ ” And the Lord repented of the evil which he thought to do to his people."
"And he said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” And he said to him, “If thy presence will not go with me, do not carry us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favor in thy sight, I and thy people? Is it not in thy going with us, so that we are distinct, I and thy people, from all other people that are upon the face of the earth?”
And the Lord said to Moses, “This very thing that you have spoken I will do; for you have found favor in my sight, and I know you by name.”
When Moses asks to see his glory, God responds "I will make all my goodness pass before you, and will proclaim before you my name 'the LORD' [YHWH]."
"Moses said, “I pray thee, show me thy glory.” And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you, and will proclaim before you my name ‘The Lord’; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy."
Then the LORD passes before Moses and proclaims, "YHWH, YHWH, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness"; Moses then confesses that the LORD is a forgiving God."
"And the Lord descended in the cloud and stood with him there, and proclaimed the name of the Lord. The Lord passed before him, and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children, to the third and the fourth generation.” And Moses made haste to bow his head toward the earth, and worshiped. And he said, “If now I have found favor in thy sight, O Lord, let the Lord, I pray thee, go in the midst of us, although it is a stiff-necked people; and pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for thy inheritance.”
CCC 211 "By going so far as to give up his own Son for us, God reveals that he is "rich in mercy"...
"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."
"But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with him, and made us sit with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus"
"By giving his life to free us from sin, Jesus reveals that he himself bears the divine name: "When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you will realize that "I AM."
"So Jesus said, “When you have lifted up the Son of man, then you will know that I am he, and that I do nothing on my own authority but speak thus as the Father taught me. And he who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what is pleasing to him.” As he spoke thus, many believed in him."