A Tidbit of Hebrew

Ever since taking a semester of Hebrew in college (which I highly recommend), I have loved reading bits of the Bible in its original language (of course, I need a little help with a dictionary--but it's exciting nonetheless!). My favorite website, http://www.blueletterbible.org , really comes in handy for studying the Old Testament texts in the original Hebrew.  The Hebrew translations are pretty fantastic. And a bit ridiculous (in a mind-blowing way).  

I was looking up one of my favorite verses, Isaiah 44:5 (the inspiration for a tentative tattoo ... we shall see), which says,

Some will proudly claim, "I am the LORD's";
Others will call themselves by the name of Jacob;
Still others will write on their hand, "The LORD's,"
And will take the name Israel.
*NIV, italics mine

So, a lot of times (practically every day now), after I share an intimate time with God through His Word, or prayer (or quite honestly, on some days, an episode of crying in my car, not wanting to brave another day of classes and whatnot ... pathetic, I know), I find myself repeating the phrase aloud,

I am the Lord's. I am the Lord's. I am the Lord's.

Lord knows I could use the reminder. And sometimes, that's all we need, right? Just to be reminded. The fact that we are always His doesn't change (and Hallelujah for that!). It's just that we forget sometimes -- and I get so upset at myself for doing so.

Anyways, after reminding myself verbally that I am still the Lord's, I write it on my wrist visibly. It is a comfort to look down at my wrist throughout the day at those little Hebrew characters and know I am His. And He is mine. He has claimed me. He has chosen me. I picture Him beaming a laughing, confident smile and saying, "Yup, she's Mine. That's my girl." (It works for guys, too.) How is He so good?!

In the Hebrew text, to write "The LORD's" would look something like this:
Literally translated, it reads, "unto Jehovah." Funny thing about the actual name, "Jehovah," or יהוה : In the Strong's dictionary (via Blue Letter Bible), it says this name is "the proper name of the one true God." They say this name might not have even been pronounced, possibly due to its supreme holiness (whoah). These are the same characters used to spell "Yahweh," another sacred, unutterable name (Can you believe that this unutterable God is our intimate Father? Incredible ...)

Cool thing is that the original root for this word/name (most Hebrew words derive from a root of three characters) is a "primitive" root, according to Strong's, which has the definitions (to name a few):

to be, to become, to appear, to exist, to be established, etc.

I don't know about you, but after reading these definitions (after a geek-out moment of how amazing God is) I immediately thought of how God is the great I AM. Okay, so maybe I geeked out after the fact. Jehovah, Yahweh -- I AM. Boom. That says it all. He is established of old (Psalm 93:2). He is everlasting to everlasting (Psalm 90:2; 1 Chronicles 16:36). He is the beginning and the end (Revelation 22:13)! He is immovable, unshakeable, unchangeable, a firm foundation. No wonder why He is called our Rock, our Refuge (Psalm 46)!

God has been begging me to take His words to heart, His precious promises, to allow them to penetrate my very core, to shake my existence, however unsettling or uncomfortable that may be. I encourage you to do the same. It is all too easy to glaze over familiar passages of Scripture -- words we know well, words we have hidden in our hearts. But how amazing it is to really sit with them, even a simple phrase like, "I am the Lord's." There is so much weight to that! God speaks to us all the time, through His Word, through His Spirit, sometimes through audible voice. Are we listening? Really listening?

I also encourage you, at least once -- on a good day, great day, or not-so-great day -- to write a reminder on your hand (in English or Hebrew!):

I am the Lord's.


He loves you with the dearest passion ever known. He is steadfast, firm, fixed. He is your Rock and foundation.
What does that mean for you?

*Disclaimer: I am no authority whatsoever on Hebrew. I just pick up bits and pieces. Feel free to do some research yourself!

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