Seven Redemptive Names: 6. Yahweh Shammah (יהוה שׁמּה) The LORD is There

As we seek to draw closer to God through investigating the different names which have been ascribed to Him, we can be comforted that He is not distant. He is with us (even when we choose to ignore Him!). We need Him, we turn to look for Him and we find that He, The LORD, is right there with us. And that is the meaning of the name Yahweh Shammah: the LORD is there.

In Ezekiel 8, we read of how there were abominations being committed in the temple and Ezekiel is shown how the elders of Israel did not think the LORD was there; that He did not see them and had forsaken them. So they committed detestable things, each at the shrine of his own idol. In Ezekiel 44, the priesthood is restored and by Ezekiel 48, the glory of the Lord has returned (or become apparent once more to the people). The LORD sets out the land that is to be allotted to the people and the land that is to be the New City of Jerusalem. The LORD sets this all out for Ezekiel and then provides the ultimate reassurance as He finishes describing the requirements for the New Jerusalem:

The city will measure about 31,500 feet all the way around. From then on the city’s name will be: Yahweh Shammah. (Ezekiel 48:35)

God has set out what the City and its temple will be like, and God has confirmed that He is there and He will be there.

And today? Through Jesus’ sacrifice and our redemption, this has been fulfilled and implemented in and through us, for the Holy Spirit dwells in us – we are the temple, and we are not alone. Truly: Yahweh Shammah – The LORD is there. We can chase this down through Paul’s writings in Scripture:

Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives among you? (1 Corinthians 3:16)

And he follows it up with:

And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you. (Romans 8:11)

So, Yahweh Shammah – the LORD is there – is unusual because it is a name for God and is actually the name of a city. But it is a name of reassurance, for it confirms that we are not alone; we are reassured; we need not be afraid because the Lord is there. And this takes us straight back into Psalm 23:

I will fear no evil, for you are with me (Psalm 23:4)

[from Timothy Pitt]

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