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Ani hu


(excuse errors in transliteration, ... if in doubt check it out)

Is 52:6


lakhen yeda' ammi shemi lakhen bayom hahu


khi-ani-hu hamedabber hinneni



hoti egw eimi autos ho lalwn

C.H.Dodd in 'The interpretation of the fourth gospel' quotes Rabbi Pinchas' (360 ACE) words on this:

'Therefore my people shall know my name, therefore, on that day

that Ani-hu is speaking: here I am.'

From this Dodd says, Pinchas treats Ani-hu (= LXX egw eimi) as the name of God.

In the LXX version of Isaiah

Is 42:8


ani yhvh hu shemi ukhevodi le-aher lo-etten



egw kurios ho theos touto mou estin to onoma ten dokxan mou hetero ou dwsw


I am yhvh that is my name and I don't share my glory

I am yhvh => I am *kurios = name of God*, the (only) God ...

Is 43:10


lema'an tede'u vetaaminu li ve tabini khi-ani hu



hina gnwte kai pisteusete kai sunete hoti egw eimi


that you may know and believe me and understand that I am

ani hu => egw eimi = name of God as *I am*

Is 43:25


anokhi anokhi hu moheh pesha'eykha



egw eimi egw eimi ho eksaleiphwn tas anomias sou


I am I am who erases your iniquities

anokhi a variant of ani

anokhi hu => egw eimi = name of God as *I am*

I am *name of God as I am* who ...

Is 45:18


ani yhvh ve-eyn 'od



egw eimi kai ouk estin eti


I am yhvh and there is no other

ani yhvh => egw eimi = I am *yhvh = name of God as I am*

Is 45:19


ani yhvh dober tzedeq



egw eimi egw eimi kurios ho lalwn dikaiosunen


I am yhvh who speaks righteousness

ani yhvh=> egw eimi egw eimi kurios= I am *name of God as I am/kurios* who ...

Is 48:12


ani hu ani rishon aph ani aheron



egw eimi prwtos kai egw eimi eis twn aiwna


I am, I am the first also I am the last

ani hu => egw eimi = *name of God as I am*



It seems that, LXX egw eimi, (English I am) is the preferred translation in these contexts for the name of God considered as *I am*, or *yhvh*.

Now compare

Is 43:10 hina gnwte kai pisteusete kai sunete hoti egw eimi that you may know and believe me and understand that I am
Jn 8:28 gnwsesthe hoti egw eimi you will know that I am he
Jn13:19 hina pisteuete ... hoti egw eimi that … you may believe that I am he

Since John's language is reminiscent of Isaiah, it has been suggested that John's egw eimi <= yhvh /name of God as I am, in Isaiah.

Isaiah: God promises to rescue his people, because they know, believe and understand that he is yhvh, and he is the only God.

John: When you know (and believe) that (Jesus= I am <= yhvh), you won't die in your sins.

In traditional Christianity, this it taken to be a claim that Jesus is the God of the Hebrew Scriptures.

John writes that many of the Jews, to whom Jesus was speaking, accepted the claim and others disagreed with it in the strongest of terms.

Also compare

Is 42:8

ten doksan mou hetero ou dwsw

my glory I give to no other

Jn 17:5

doksason me su pater para seautw te dokse he eichon pro tou ton kosmon einai para soi

Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory which I had with you before the world was made

In Christian circles, this has been reconciled by saying Jesus and his Father are somehow thought of as *one* = I am = yhvh; even though a distinction is maintained.



Contact: Peter Eyland