Building a Home
to Honor the Name of God
Both David and Solomon had a burning passion to build a house to the name of the Lord God (2 Chronicles 2:4, 6). As mothers and homemakers, this should also be our burning passion--to build a home that is a dwelling place for God, and also for our husband, and children.
We build this home, not for our own name and not for the name of our posterity, but for the NAME OF THE LORD. This is a HUGE vision, for God's name is far beyond our wildest imagination. God has so many names to describe Himself. One name is not enough to reveal all of His character, and even the revelation of each name is only a tiny glimpse of who He is. Because it would take a whole book to write about the names of God, we will look only at the eight redemption names of God. These names alone will give us understanding and vision to build our home to honor the name of the Lord, "who is the only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords" (1 Timothy 6:15).
Jehovah-Jireh--The Lord Sees and Provides
We read this name in Genesis 22:14. When Abraham was offering up his beloved son in obedience to God's command, God stopped him mid-track, and instead provided a lamb for the sacrifice. Jehovah-Jireh speaks of the greatest provision God ever provided for mankind, the provision of salvation and deliverance from our sin through the death of Jesus upon the cross, the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. But, He continues to be our provision. Matthew 6:25-33 and Isaiah 65:24 tell us that God sees our need even before we cry out to Him and He has promised to be our Provider.
How can we build a home to Jehovah-Jireh if we are always grumbling about not having this or that? How can we build a home to this name if we cannot even trust Him to give us another baby? God has promised that when we walk in obedience to His will, that He will provide all that we need. God revealed Himself to Abraham as Jehovah-Jireh because of his obedience (Genesis 22:1-19).
Jehovah-Rapha--The Lord my Healer
This name is revealed in Exodus 15:22-26. The children of Israel had come through the Red sea on dry land, but now they had been walking for three days with no water! Eventually they found water at Marah, but it was bitter so they still couldn't drink. Now they were complaining BIG TIME! God mercifully showed Moses a tree to throw into the water and it immediately became sweet. Then God made a statute and ordinance and said, "If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statues, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the Lord that healeth thee" (Exodus 15:25-26).
The full meaning of rapha is "to cure, restore, heal, and make whole physically, morally, and spiritually." God is not only faithful to heal us physically (Isaiah 53:5; Matthew 8:17 and 1 Peter 2:24), but also to make our spirit whole and bring sweetness to the bitter experiences we face in life.
Are you building your home to Jehovah-Rapha? Do you continually run to the doctor or do you seek the Lord for what He wants you to do? That may require a doctor, but isn't it best to first go to the Lord for His direction and ask for His healing? Life is not perfect and many times there are misunderstandings and differences in family relationships. Do you allow Jehovah-Rapha to come into all your family experiences to restore, heal, and bring sweetness again? Do your children see you relying upon the Lord, or upon man's resources?
Jehovah-Nissi--The Lord my Banner
The Amalekites came to make war with Israel. Moses commanded Joshua to gather warriors to fight with them while he went to the top of the hill with the "rod of God" in his hand, the wonder-working rod which brought the terrible plagues upon Egypt, opened a path in the Red Sea, and brought the waters of death pounding down upon the Egyptians. When Moses held up his hands, the Israelites prevailed, but when they became heavy and he let them down, the Amalekites prevailed. So Aaron and Hur stood on either side of him to hold up his hands. While he held the miraculous staff up high as a banner, Joshua defeated Amalek and his army. After the victory, Moses built an altar and called it Jehovah-Nissi, The Lord my Banner (Exodus 17:8-16).
The enemy is still alive today and comes to make war against your home. He wants to destroy marriages and families. Sometimes you may get weary in the battle, but never give up the banner of God's cause. Lift high the name of Jesus, continue in prayer, and trust in the power of the Holy Spirit. Help one another as you pray together at your morning and evening Family Devotions because this is how you strengthen one another's arms in the battle. Never let your banner drag in the dust. Never compromise God's truth. Never assimilate to the humanistic ways of society. Hold God's banner high and do not fear.
God's word to you as you face the battle with enemies bigger and outnumbering you is, "Let not your hearts faint, fear not, and do not tremble, neither be ye terrified because of them; For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you" (Deuteronomy 20:3-4).
Jehovah-Qadash--The Lord my Sanctifier
God brought the Israelites out of Egypt with a mighty arm and great victory, but His people didn't yet know their God. They thought and acted like the Egyptians. They had no idea of how God wanted them to live and therefore He kept them in the wilderness for 40 years to teach them His ways and to sanctify them.
This name of God occurs in Leviticus, the book where we read of all the laws and statutes that God gave to His people in order to show them how to be a people after His own heart. In Leviticus 20:7-8, God says, "Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the Lord your God. And ye shall keep my statutes, and do them: I am the Lord which sanctify you." The word "sanctify" is qadesh and means "to purify, to hallow, to make clean, to sanctify, to set apart exclusively for God."
Are you building your home to the honor of Jehovah-Qadash? Do you seek to keep your home and your family set apart for God's purposes? Or does your home look like any other worldly home with TV blaring and arguments and squabbling?
God wants to sanctify every member of your family. He wants to sanctify them with the Word of God, the indwelling Spirit, and the blood of Jesus, just as Moses sprinkled the blood upon the people (Exodus 24:4-8). And as God sanctified the house Solomon built for Him, so He wants to sanctify the home you are building for Him. 2 Chronicles 7:16 says, "I have chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there forever; and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually." God will put His name upon your home as you set it apart for Him.
We don't have to run off and hide in the bush to do this. We can live in the city with evil all around, and yet be set apart to God. This is the amazing thing about God. He is "separate from sinners" (Hebrews 7:26), and yet He bends down to the sinner to love him and lift him up. He wants us to be the same--severed from the spirit of this world, but ready to go into the midst of the world to reach out with God's love.
Let's build a family that is clean, pure, and set apart for the service of the Lord. Encourage your children that they were born to be set apart for God's purpose for them. Anything else will be a waste of their life.
Jehovah-Shalom--The Lord my Peace
Because the Israelites did evil in the site of the Lord, He allowed the Midianites to come against them and they became their slaves for seven years. They destroyed the fruit of their land, confiscated their livestock, and left them with nothing to eat. In their despair the Israelites cried out to the Lord and He heard their cry. God came to a man named Gideon and commanded him to rescue Israel from the Midianites. Gideon felt too helpless and weak in his own strength and wanted proof that it was really God speaking to him.
"Please don't leave until I bring you an offering of food," he asked the angel of God. When Gideon came back and put the food on the rock, the angelic visitor touched it with the tip of his staff and fire sprang up from the rock and consumed everything. Gideon was full of fear that he had seen the Angel of the Lord face to face. But, "The Lord said unto him, Peace be unto thee, fear not: thou shalt not die. Then Gideon built an altar there unto the Lord, and called it Jehovah-Shalom" (Judges 6:22-24).
Are you building a home of peace to Jehovah Shalom? Turn your home into a home of rest instead of restlessness. There will always be upsets to disturb your family life, but don't allow them to do get on top of you. Look up to the Lord instead. My favorite Scripture is found in Isaiah 26:3-4, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee; because he trusteth in thee. Trust ye in the Lord forever: for in the Lord Jehovah is everlasting strength." God is bigger than any trauma that happens in your life. When you look to Him and confess your trust in Him He will sustain you. Your circumstances may not change, but peace will reign in your heart and home.
Jehovah Shalom wants His people to "dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places" (Isaiah 32:18). Not only when everything is going well, but the next verse says, "Even if the forest is destroyed and the city is annihilated, you will be blessed" (NET). This is the kind of peace we can have when we trust in His name, peace when everything is falling down around us.
Jehovah-Tsidkenu--The Lord my Righteousness
We read in Jeremiah 23:5-6 that God's name is, "The Lord our righteousness." One day the city of Jerusalem will also be called by this name (Jeremiah 33:16). If the Holy God is dwelling in our homes, they should also be called, "The Lord our Righteousness."
As we build to this name of God, we will constantly seek to banish evil and uphold righteousness in our home. Although God is a God of love and compassion, He cannot be God unless He is righteous. He demands exactness in weights and measures (Leviticus 19:35-37 and Deuteronomy 25:15). Anything less than perfection comes short of His holiness and that's why we need the blood of Jesus to cover our sins (Romans 3:23 and 1 John 1:7).
However, although we cannot be righteous except through the righteous life of Christ who lives in us, we should have the same essence about us that God does. He hates evil and loves righteousness and wants us to do the same. God does not tell us to tolerate evil, as is the popular opinion today, but to HATE it! Psalm 97:10 says, "Ye that love the Lord, hate evil."
Romans 12:9 says, "Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good." To "abhor" means "to shudder with horror, to utterly detest." Is this how we feel about sin? Is this how we feel about evil in our home? Is this how we feel about the evil that is happening in the nation?
It is a powerful thing to build a righteous home. It is not easy. Evil finds a way to sneak into your home. Be watchful as you build your home to this holy name of God. As more and more families build righteous homes, the more we become a nation of righteousness. Above everything else, it is righteousness that lifts up a nation. Proverbs 14:34 says, "Righteousness exalts a nation; but sin is a reproach to any people."
Jehovah-Ra'ah--the Lord my Shepherd
How wonderful that God reveals Himself to us by different names. If we only knew Him by one name, we would not understand the complete fullness of who He is. We live in awe of our righteous, holy God who must judge all sin. But, then He reveals Himself to us as the Shepherd, the one who bends down to tend our needs (Psalm 113:5-9) and who protects us and gather us up in His arms (Isaiah 40:11). This name speaks of the intimate relationship we can experience with Him, for the word "shepherd" also means "to be a friend, a companion, to keep company with." A Bedouin shepherd in Israel testified that even if he were blindfolded he would know each one of his sheep by feeling their faces. Our Shepherd wants to have an intimate and tender relationship with us. The psalmist calls God, "MY Shepherd," and repeatedly the Great Shepherd of the sheep calls us "MY flock."
As we build a home to the name of our gentle and tender Shepherd, we will teach our children that He wants to be their personal Savior and Shepherd. We will be careful not to do anything in our home that will grieve our Shepherd who wants to be intimately involved in everything we do.
Our Shepherd has a great shepherding heart and He wants us to shepherd our little flock in the same way He shepherds His flock. Shepherding is an enormous undertaking and from the Scriptures and the Hebrew meanings of the word "shepherd" we find that it includes the following tender and powerful ministries. You will see that a shepherd must be both brave and tender. Let God teach you as you read them.
It means befriending with an intimate relationship, binding and bandaging up the hurt and broken, bravely fighting off all enemies, bringing back the straying and wandering ones, carrying the lambs close to your heart, comforting, encouraging the weary, eliminating fear in the dark and anxious times, feeding, gathering in your arms and to your heart, gently leading, guarding and watching over your flock, guiding your flock on the "right track," healing the sickly, increasing the flock, keeping them safe, leading to rest and rich green pastures, nourishing, persevering until you find the lost, preparing a table, protecting, providing, rescuing when they turn to by-paths, restoring (renewing, reviving, and refreshing), ruling with wisdom and discretion, sacrificing and laying down your life for your flock, saving your flock, searching and seeking the lost ones, strengthening the weak, and tenderly folding your flock. My, what an amazing mission you have as a shepherdess.
Embrace this beautiful role. It is not insignificant. I would suggest you read the above paragraph over and over. It is too much to comprehend in one reading. Did you know that shepherding is talked about in the Bible from Genesis to Revelation? God chose two of the greatest leaders of all time from shepherding the sheep, Moses and King David (Exodus 3:1-10 and Psalm 78:70-72). God looks for parents who will shepherd after His own heart (Jeremiah 3:15). And because our little flock is really His flock, He requires them at our hand (Ezekiel 34:10). He wants us to diligently know the state of our little flock (Proverbs 27:23).
How can we be the shepherdess He wants us to be? We certainly can't do it in our own strength and wisdom, but be encouraged for Micah 5:4 tells us that Jesus Christ will "stand and feed in the strength of the Lord, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God." If that is how He shepherds, that's the only way we can do it, too. You can do it in HIS strength.
Jehovah-Shammah--The Lord is There
We now look at the last redemptive name of God, another precious name. We find this amazing prophetic promise in Ezekiel 48:35, "And the name of the city from that day shall be, The Lord is there." The temple was destroyed, Judah had been taken as captives to Babylon, and only a small remnant remained in the land. There did not seem any hope for the restoration of Israel or the temple. But God's promise comes to give hope. Again He says in Ezekiel 43:7 that this will be the "place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel forever."
The understanding of this name is the holy and glorious presence of God. It is God in the midst! What could be more powerful? In the Old Testament God dwelt in a temporary tabernacle and then the temple. God said, "I have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle" (2 Samuel 7:6). But, when Jesus died upon the cross, the thick veil protecting the Holy of Holies was torn apart and now He wants to abide in your heart. He also loves to dwell in your home, because He is a dwelling God.
He wants to live and walk with you in your home. He wants to fill every room of your home. Because your body is the dwelling place of His Holy Spirit, every task you do is sacred. Mothering is a holy career. Nothing is mundane. When you are changing a diaper, scrubbing the floor, doing endless dishes and laundry, and tending to the myriads of needs of your little ones, God is with you. Every little thing you do is sacred and holy because God is with you.
God also wants you to reveal to your children the awesome understanding of Jehovah-Shammah. As you are home with your children and available to them, you show to your children this quality of the character of God. Your children learn that "God is always there," just as you are always available and there for them.
May God pour out His Holy Spirit upon you as you build your home to honor the name of our holy God.
Check out the following:
Scriptures about holding up the banner:
Numbers 1:52; 2:2, 17, 34; Psalm 20:5; 60:4; Song of Solomon 2:4; 6:4, 10 and Isaiah 62:10.
Scriptures about shepherding:
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