O may Your glorious name be blessed and exalted above all blessing and praise!
This week, we are looking at a prayer for the people of Israel in Nehemiah 9, a prayer for restoring their lost spiritual passion. If you want to reignite that flame of desire to know God and experience His favor in your life, I want you to notice four components of this prayer. First of all, the prayer begins with an exaltation of God’s name. Look at verse 5: “Arise, bless the Lord your God forever and ever! O may Your glorious name be blessed and exalted above all blessing and praise!” The first step to reestablishing your relationship with God is to remember who God is. We do that by concentrating on His name.
Why does the Bible put such an emphasis on the name of God? Because a person’s name represents the essence of who that person is. It is the same with God. Nehemiah 9:6 says, “You alone are the Lord. You have made the heavens, the heaven of heavens with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and everything that is in them. You give life to all of them and the heavenly host bows down before You.” One of the most frequently used names for God in the Bible is Elohim, the Creator God. When we come into His presence, we ought to reflect on the fact that He is the one who made everything in this universe, including us. We would not have an awareness of God if He had not created us. The other common name for God in the Bible is Yahweh, which in the Hebrew means “I am.” That refers to the eternality of God. Compared to God we are nothing more than a grain of sand in the Sahara Desert, or a thimble filled with water in the Pacific Ocean. If you want to reestablish your relationship with God, concentrate on those characteristics that make Him different than anyone or anything else.
You know what happens whenever we concentrate on who God is? It reminds us of the obligation we have to Him. A. W. Tozer wrote, “The man who comes to a right belief about God is relieved of ten thousand temporal problems, for he sees at once that these have to do with matters which at the most cannot concern him for very long; but even if the multiple burdens of time may be lifted from him, the one mighty single burden of eternity begins to press down upon him with a weight more crushing than all the woes of the world piled one upon another. That mighty burden is his obligation to God. It includes an instant and lifelong duty to love God with every power of mind and soul, to obey Him perfectly, and to worship Him acceptably.” When we really concentrate on who God is, it is not that it makes us carefree. Yes, reflecting on the greatness of God does cause us to turn away from our temporary problems. But remembering the greatness of God presents us with an even greater problem, and that is the duty we have to Him for all eternity, the obligation we have to obey Him completely. If you are going to restore your spiritual passion, there has to be an exaltation of who God is, of His name.
Today’s devotion is excerpted from “A Prayer For Drifters” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.
A. W. Tozer, “The Knowledge Of The Holy” (1961; repr., New York: HarperCollins, 2009), 2.
Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org