EHYEH ASHER EHYEH
I WILL BE WHO I WILL BE OR I WILL BE THAT I WILL BE
Ehyeh is the first-person singular imperfect form of hayah, “to be”. Ehyeh is usually translated “I will be”, since the imperfect tense in Hebrew denotes actions that are not yet completed (e.g. Exodus 3:12, “Certainly I will be [ehyeh] with thee.”). Asher is an ambiguous pronoun which can mean, depending on context, “that”, “who”, “which”, or “where”.
Although Ehyeh asher ehyeh is generally rendered in English “I am that I am”, better renderings might be “I will be what I will be” or “I will be who I will be”, or “I shall prove to be whatsoever I shall prove to be” or even “I will be because I will be”. In these renderings, the phrase becomes an open-ended gloss on God’s promise in Exodus 3:12. Other renderings include: Leeser, “I WILL BE THAT I WILL BE”; Rotherham, “I Will Become whatsoever I please.” Greek, Ego eimi ho on (ἐγώ εἰμι ὁ ὤν), “I am The Being” in the Septuagint, and Philo, and Revelation or, “I am The Existing One”; Lat., ego sum qui sum, “I am Who I am.”