December 12 2022
Today, Monday December 12
Jehovah, The Great I AM
“The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake.
Psalm 23 begins with “The LORD” which in the Hebrew is Jehovah. God wants us to know and worship Him (John 4:23). God wants us to love and trust Him. Psalm 9:10 says: “And those who know Your name will put their trust in You; For You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.” The name Jehovah is the name of God that is used most often in the scriptures. It is used 6,823 times in the OT and over 700 times in the Psalms.
Now the name Jehovah is filled with meaning. In our English Bible it is either translated LORD or GOD when used with Adonai Jehovah – (Lord GOD). It is also pronounced Yahweh. This name comes from the Hebrew verb hayah, which signifies “to be” or “to become”. When translated in the first person, it becomes as in Exodus 3:14 - “I Am,” said twice. “I Am that I Am”. The name LORD, therefore, points to the God who is continuously becoming – “the Self-Existing One.”
G. Campbell Morgan – defined it as, “The Becoming One – that is the One Who becomes to His people all that they need!” Some interpret the name LORD as containing two truths in one name. The first meaning is: “the One who exists in Himself.” The second is: “the One who reveals Himself.” The Jews well knew the significance of this great Name. When Jesus stood before them and said, "Before Abraham was I AM," (John 8:58), they knew He was claiming to be God, in the absolute sense of the word. He was claiming that the Jesus of the New Testament was the Jehovah of the Old Testament.
So it is interesting that this great chapter begins with the compound name of Jehovah which is Jehovah-Rohi. Jehovah-Rohi combines the personal name of God, Yahweh (or Jehovah), with the descriptive name of God, Rohi or Ro‘i, meaning, “my Shepherd.” Elsewhere God is simply called the Shepherd. The root word is ra‘ah which means to feed and tend domestic animals by pasturing them. This name speaks of God caring for His people in practical ways as well as providing spiritual sustenance.
There are at least seven more compound names of Jehovah in the Old Testament that are reflected in the contents of this Psalm.
"I shall not want", tells us that the LORD is Jehovah-Jireh, which means “in the mount it shall be seen that the Lord will provide". We learn of this name in Genesis 22:14 where God on Mt. Moriah provided Abraham a substitute ram to sacrifice instead of his son Isaac.
“He leads me beside still waters", speaks of Jehovah-Shalom, Who is "the Lord our peace". When the LORD ask Gideon to attack the enemy with 300 men and Gideon was afraid, He revealed Himself to him by this name of Jehovah. This is found in Judges 6:24.
"He restores my soul" informs us that the LORD is Jehovah-Rophe, "the Lord who heals". The LORD reveal Himself by this name to Israel at the bitter waters of Marah in the wilderness in Exodus 15:26. There Moses was told by God to cut down a tree and throw it into the bitter water and immediately it became sweet and drinkable.
"He leads me in paths of righteousness", helps us to understand that the LORD is Jehovah-Tsidkenu, "the Lord our righteousness". This name of Jehovah is found in Jeremiah 33:16 where the LORD promises to save and redeem His people and become their salvation.
"You are with me" reflects the name Jehovah-Shammah, "the Lord is there". We read about this name in Ezekiel 48:35, when the LORD restores the temple and once again dwells in the midst of His people.
"In the presence of my enemies", assures us that the LORD is "Jehovah-Nissi, "the Lord our banner". This name is found in Exodus 17:15 where when LORD is lifted up, He gives victory to His people.
"You anoint my head with oil", reminds us that the LORD is Jehovah-M'Kaddesh, "the Lord who sanctifies". We see this name in Leviticus 20:8, where the LORD sets apart His people and makes them holy through the sacrificial blood.
I pray today that you will worship the LORD in a fresh and new way as you trust Him to be all you need. Today He is saying to you and me, “I AM your ____________.” You fill in the blank!