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Shabbat Shalom. And now, after last week’s break, we are back to the 6th of the 7 redemptive names of God—Jehovah Raah.
This name of God is derived from what may be one of the best- and most-known lines in the Bible—the Lord is my Shepherd—penned by David in the 23rd Psalm.
Raah comes from the Hebraic word , Rô’eh which is translated “shepherd”. The translation can be extended to mean “friend” or “companion” from the word, “rea”. This is indicative of the intimacy God desires between Himself and His people.
In reading this Psalm I experienced a ha-ha moment when I came face-to-face with the realization that whatever I believe God is, then I must believe in myself relative to the extent of that attribute. For instance, if I say He is my “Shepherd”; then, I must be assured that I am His “sheep” and to live in that assurance.
I was curious as to why David wrote this Psalm. The obvious reason is that David tended sheep so it makes good sense for him to use the analogy of sheep and shepherd. However, in researching the characteristics of a sheep, I saw clearly why this inspired David’s 23rd Psalm and also why God likened humanity to sheep (Isaiah 53:6).
In all that I learned about sheep, the most intriguing finding was this—a sheep can get stuck on its back. The term for this is “cast”. When this happens the sheep cannot right itself and could starve to death or become easy prey if not righted again. It’s no wonder sheep are so dependent on the shepherd.
Have you ever been “cast” down, in a rut or at a loss at wit’s-end crossroads and there is nothing you can do to right yourself?
I have. And, it was in one of these moments when God invited me to act on my faith in believing He is my Shepherd and as such to live in the assurance that I am His “sheep”.
It is in seeing myself as a “cast sheep” and being confident in the assurance that God is my “Shepherd”, and that He has the ability to right me that “A Sheep’s Look at the Shepherd’s Psalm” was conceptualized.
See you next week as we conclude this series, “What In God’s Name” with a look at the 7th redemptive names of God—Jehovah Shammah—the God who is There/Here.
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