In Touch Daily Devotional
by Dr. Charles Stanley
Wednesday September 22, 2004
InTouch Early Light Devotional
The God to Whom We Pray
Nehemiah demonstrates power in prayer. As a servant to King Artaxerxes of Persia, he had no right to request leave to rebuild Jerusalem's walls, much less to requisition materials and protection. Yet Nehemiah could act boldly because he comprehended the nature of the God to whom he prayed.
Nehemiah's prayer begins, "I beseech you, O LORD God of heaven." LORD, when it appears in all capital letters, denotes the word Jehovah (a form of Yahweh, the Hebrew name for God). It means "God who is eternal in His being" - everything everywhere is in His presence. So, when God makes a promise, He already knows how He will keep it. That is why Nehemiah calls Him "the awesome God who preserves the covenant." He understood God was committed to bringing repentant Israelites back to their homeland to dwell in His presence. (v. 9)
The next Hebrew word, Elohim, is translated "He who is absolutely sovereign." This name speaks of His omnipotence and refers to the Creator God. If He spoke the world into being, then certainly He is more than able to provide Nehemiah with a little wood and some time off from work.
There are many other names for God: Adonai for master, Jehovah-Jireh for provider, or Jehovah-Rapha for healer. Since the Hebrew language is precise, it can help believers by better enabling us to know who He is - when we need solace, we call upon the God of comfort; in our confusion, we have the God who teaches. The foundation of all prayer is our view of God.
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