The History of God in His Union With Man, by Witness Lee


The first thing we have to let people know in a biography is the name of the person about whom the biography is written. This is why we need to know the name of God.

A. Jehovah, Meaning I Am Who I Am—
Self-existing and Ever-existing

There are many divine titles of God, but in this message I want to refer to only two of them. God’s name is first Jehovah. Jehovah means I Am Who I Am, the self-existing and ever-existing One. Exodus 3:13-14 says, "And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you." God called Moses and charged him to say to Israel that His name is I Am. Jehovah means I Am, I Am That I Am.

We can also say that Jehovah means I was, I am, and I will be. Revelation 1:4 refers to God as the One "who is and who was and who is coming." He is the One who was in the past, who is in the present, and who will be in the future. In other words, He is self-existing and ever-existing, implying that He has no beginning and no ending.

In John 8 the Lord referred to Himself as the "I Am" three times. In verse 24 He said, "Unless you believe that I am, you will die in your sins." He said in verse 28, "When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am." Finally, the Jews challenged Him by asking, "You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?" (v. 57). Then the Lord Jesus responded, "Truly, truly, I say to you, Before Abraham came into being, I am" (v. 58). Strictly speaking, it is wrong grammar to say that before Abraham came into being, "I am." Grammatically, He should have said that before Abraham, "He was," or "He had been." But this would be wrong theologically. He is the great I Am without beginning and without ending, from eternity to eternity.

His being the I Am means "I am whatever you need" and "I am everything." We have a signed check with the space for the amount left blank, and we may fill in whatever we need. After the name "I Am" we can fill in the amount. The heavenly bank will cash this check. The Lord is whatever we need. If we need salvation, light, life, power, wisdom, holiness, or righteousness, Jesus Christ Himself is all these things to us. He is Jehovah God, the great I Am.

(The History of God in His Union With Man, Chapter 1, by Witness Lee)