Names of God – Jehovah Shammah
I mentioned in the last post how we will continue to see the name Jehovah used in other names to describe different attributes of God. Here is one of them, Jehovah Shammah. This name isn’t as commonly used as many of the others, in fact, we first find it in Ezekiel 48:35 “The distance around the entire city will be 6 miles. And from that day the name of the city will be ‘The Lord Is There.’” They named the city, Jehovah Shammah, The Lord Is There, or more literally, I Am There.
Through this name, God wants to remind us that He is here…wherever here is. In Hebrews 13:5-6 it says, “5 Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, “I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.” 6 So we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?” First, He says He will never fail us or abandon us…He is there, then He says, so don’t be afraid. Listen to this, WE HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR! The world goes around with their “No Fear” gear, but we really have nothing to fear. God will never fail us and He will always be there.
When Jesus was leaving the disciples to ascend to heaven, they were worried. We see this story in John chapter 14. In verse 12 Jesus told them, “I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father.” He said that we will be able to do greater works than he did because He went to be with the Father. Then He went on to tell us how, in verse 16 when He said, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you.” Christ told the disciples that He had to leave so that He could send another Advocate, or as some translations say another Comforter. You see, even though Jesus was 100% God, He was also 100% man. When He chose to take on flesh to redeem the world, He put some limitations on Himself. In the flesh, He could only be in one place at a time, but when the Holy Spirit came, He could be in all believers at the same time. This is the very definition of “The Lord is Here.”
What does this mean? Well, we all know the 23rd Psalm. Look at verse 4, “Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.” God protects us and guides us throughout our lives, Psalm 48:14 says, “For that is what God is like. He is our God forever and ever, and he will guide us until we die.” He lives in us and works through us. He speaks to us in many ways; sometimes through His word, Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” And, sometimes He speaks to us through a whisper. 1 Kings 19:12, “And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.”
In my lifetime, God has spoken to me in many ways. Sometimes through answered prayer, like when we were driving back to Indiana from my father’s funeral in Florida. The next week we were supposed to move to Ohio where I was going to be a Youth Pastor. The only problem was, we had spent every dime we had to go to my father’s funeral. So as a family, we prayed that, if God wanted us to take this position, He would provide a way. We prayed the whole 25-hour drive. When we got home there was a message on our answering machine, yes, we had one of those back then. The message was from the man we would be renting the house from in Ohio. He said that he just wanted to let us know that someone had paid our first month’s rent and security deposit for us. God spoke.
Other times God has spoken to me through His word. In fact, I’d have to say that has been most of the time. Sometimes in my Bible reading, I will find the answer I had been looking for, and other times He would bring a passage to mind that I had memorized years before. This is one reason it is so important to memorize the Bible. He will always bring those verses back right when you need them, whether it is something you have been praying about, or when you are speaking to someone and they have a question about the Bible.
And yes, God has spoken to me in an audible whisper…once. I had quit serving as a Youth and Music Pastor and was a crew foreman for a large lawn service in Indiana. I wasn’t running from God, rather, I was waiting to see what He had for me next. One day I was running a mower in an apartment complex. This one took me 6 hours to mow. I made mowing my prayer time, so for that six hours, I would pray. This day I was praying about where God wanted me, and over the drone of the mower, I heard an audible voice in my head telling me it was time to start perusing full-time service again. And, yes…that’s when I found the job in Ohio. I don’t believe God talks to us like that often, but He knows when we need it. In fact, there were many things like that leading up to starting that position in Ohio, and later I would realize just why. The next year at that church was the hardest year I have ever experienced, but I never questioned whether God wanted me there or not, so I kept on my course because God was there.
Jehovah Shamma will always be there for us. The problem is we get so busy in our lives that we often don’t notice Him. Just remember that no matter what you are going through…God is There!