Knowing God by His Names ~ Presence 13

                        Knowing God by His Names – 13
 
                           Jehovah-Shammah ~ The LORD is There
 
Key Verse:    Ezekiel 48: 35b  ‘And the name of the city will be:  The LORD is There.’
 
Brief History – Context of name used in Scripture: Ezekiel was born during the reign of King Josiah (his prophetic messages are dated approximately 593-571 for you history buffs).  Ezekiel was born of a priestly lineage, and raised in the temple environment.  The beginning of his ministry he proclaimed that Jerusalem and the Temple would fall to destruction due to the sins of the Israelites.  Following these events taking place,  Ezekiel again gave a prophetic word, describing a time when God’s 
Temple and the city will be rebuilt.  The last verse of Ezekiel is a prophetic statement revealing that the name of the Holy City would be ‘The LORD is There’ {Jehovah-Shammah}.  This not only being a name for the New Jerusalem, (noting –  most commentators agree that this vision has not yet been fulfilled), but this is a name that reveals much about the nature and character of God Himself.  As Nathan Stone writes, ‘it is the most fitting name with which to climax the Old Testament revelation of God.’  Yahweh, Jehovah desires relationship, to … be with us.
 
Israel had been known for following and worshipping a God that dwelt in their midst.  In the cloud by day, and the pillar of Fire by night, (Deut. 1:33) between the Cherubim in the Most Holy of Holies, (Ex. 26:33, 1 Kings 8:6, 1 Sam. 4:4).  Track with me as we dig deeper, and explore God dwelling, His presence with us.
 
Let us again, look at the Hebrew wording… the word Shammah, (or sham) meaning basically…’there’, but you know me, I can not stop ‘there’… (sorry for the pun), here is where it gets interesting…. it comes from the root word, ‘asher’ (an adverb) denoting the summing up (if you will) of where, when, how and what… so the LORD will be or dwell …. in our what, our where, our when, and our how.  I’d like us to look at a New Testament word, that likens to this…. the word is ‘mesos’, translated from the Greek – meaning midst or with…. it is all encompassing, denoting .enveloping from within… Matthew 18:20 ‘… where two or three come together in My name, there I am in the midst of them’.  The LORD is there… can you in a sense see Him pointing His finger… there I am… right there, as He taps us on our shoulders all around the group, heads down and bowed.  The same root word is used in Matthew 28:20 ‘… and be sure of this, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’  We can follow up that verse with, Heb. 13:5 ‘Never will I leave you or forsake you.’
 
GODISNOWHERE for many of us, we may interpret this to read ‘God is No Where’,  we have lost sight of Him during times of trouble, sickness, financial trials, ‘guilt from sin’ – spiritual dullness, dryness. 1 Isaiah 29:13 says ‘…These people come near to Me with their mouth and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me.’   We are the ones who are far off.  As one author writes ‘when we take God for granted, we diminish His role in our life.’   Put God back where He should be and place the proper dividing lines and read it again…GOD IS NOW HERE, completely different perspective isn’t it.
 
David addressed this in Psalms 139, he had come to a place, where he was understanding the interaction God had in his life, from the beginning, to his present circumstance, also that he was unable (as with all of us) to escape and run from God’s presence.  Have you too felt like running from God?  Well, put your packed bags down… it aint gonna happen.   ‘Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?’ (verse 7). 
 
Genesis 1:2 ‘the Spirit of God hovered over…’, God is Omnipresent, a large word for  ‘everywhere all the time’.  It has been defined also as ‘God being wholly present in every part of His domain at the same instant’. God wants so bad to be with us… He has gone from hovering, to dwelling in the cloud, the fire, residing in the Temple, then …sending His Son…And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth’, (John 1:15).  Let’s bring this down, so we can get our hands and head around it….this Presence is now in the believers – as living temples of God. 
 ‘Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own.’ (1 Cor. 6:19 The Amplified)
 

 For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.  (2 Cor. 6:16 NASB)
 
Just as Israel of the Old Testament, the Church, the body of Christ, is also called the habitation of God. He is in me, and in you, and in the pastor dripping with the five fold ministry.  How exciting to know, that God’s presence has pursued us…. may we know Him as our ever present, Presence.  May He stamp us with ‘God is There’.
 
Study Questions:
 
1.  Psalms 46:1 says  ‘God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in times of need.’  It can be translated to read… Our God is abundantly available for help in tight places.  Are you in a tight place, and wondering where is God?  He is near…. now call to Him.
 
 
 
2.  The eternal, unchanging, all-powerful, all-knowing, Sovereign God, dwells in us, we in essence are ‘God carriers’.  Knowing this, is there an area of your life, a habit that needs addressing? (I know, now God is really messing with you).
 
3.  Has there been a time in your life when God has revealed Himself to you as Jehovah-Shammah?  This week share with someone, how the God of the Universe has made Himself known to you in a real way.
 
 
 
 
Resources used in this study:    1 Jehovah Shammah – article by Scott Snowden (Green Valley Christian Church), Exploring the Old Testament – by Samuel J. Schultz & Gary V. Smith; The Names of God – by Lester Sumrall; Names of God – by Nathan Stone; Reading O.T. Terminology; Lexicon of Greek Names; Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon, Theological Dictionary of the N.T.; The Strong’s Concordance; The Complete Word Study Dictionary of the Old Testament; The Vines Expository Dictionary;  The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament.
 
Translations Used:  New American Standard Bible, New International Version, King James Version, Young’s Literal Translation, Revised Standard Version, New Living Translation, The Amplified Bible.  For devotional insight – The Message.
 
In Him, DeDe  (Ps. 92:4   You thrill me LORD! – with Your ever abiding presence)
 
 

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