Can and Will

This morning, I learned something so wonderful in Exodus 6. I loved it so much that I already told my husband, my daughters, my sister, my friend, and now you! In Exodus 6, God says something very unusual to Moses. He says this:

“I am the Lord. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as God Almighty, but by my name the Lord I did not make myself known to them. . . Therefore, say to the Israelites: I am the Lord, and I will bring you out under the yoke of the Egyptians.”

I pause. I cannot figure it out. Why would it matter that the people knew God as God Almighty (or El-Shaddai in Hebrew) but not yet as the Lord (Jehovah)? What’s so special about people knowing God now as Jehovah (also said as Yahweh) as opposed to El-Shaddai?

I love what I discover in a blog post by Jacob Gerber. He explains it as the difference between the Almighty God who can do all things, and the One who will do all things.

Gerber explains, “As El-Shaddai, he is capable of doing all these things, but there is no guarantee that he will. But as [Jehovah], God binds himself to his people, and he binds his people to himself. He is their God, and they are his people. God will move heaven and earth to deliver his people and bring them into their rest.”

In Exodus 6, God tells us He not only can do everything, but He also will. He will! He is bound by the covenant He “swore with uplifted hand. . ” (8). This serves as a guarantee of His love and faithfulness to us.

All day, I think about the God who can do anything and everything. But it’s more than that; He can do it, and He will do all He promises to us.

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