Word for the Month & for Sunday, Nov. 1
Scripture: Isaiah 44
See Message: Waves And Anchors
In Isaiah 44:8, God says this to His people:
“Fear not, do not be afraid
Have I not told you from that time
And have declared it
You are My witnesses
Is there a God beside Me
There is no other God.
I know not any.”
Yet other English translations will translate it not as “There is no other God” as “There is no other rock.” The reason is, the Hebrew actually doesn’t say “God” but “tzor” and “tzor” literally means “rock.” So the word “rock” can be translated as “God.” That’s because there’s a deep connection between “God” and “rock.” What is it?
A rock is just about the most permanent of things. While everything else changes around them, rocks don’t change. Rocks are strong, and for the most part, unbreakable. Rocks, when used as weapons or tools, are powerful. When we use the phrase “rock solid” or “solid as a rock” we speak of firmness, unyieldingness, strength, stability, concrete reality. Rocks are foundational. Foundations are often made with rock – as rock gives its strength to the building it supports.
So why, in some Scriptures, are the words “rock” and “God” interchangeable? It’s because God is a “Rock.” He’s strong. He’s unbreakable. He’s stable. He’s unyielding. He’s unchanging. Everything else changes – but Him. He remains the same. He’s foundational. Everything exists because of Him. God is a Rock in that He’s real, the most real thing, pure, concrete reality.
What does that mean for you? It means that compared to God, everything else in this life is flimsy, weak. Every problem you have, every crisis, every fearful thing, is like vapor, compared to God. And so you don’t have to fear. That problem will pass away. But God will remain. Whatever you’re dealing with, it will pass, but God will remain. The one and only thing in your life that will not change is Him. And since everything else in our lives is changing, how then should we live? We must live not focusing, dwelling, and resting on the changing circumstances that surround us, but on the Rock that remains the same.
God is the Tzor, the Rock. That means you have to make Him your Rock – the Rock, the foundation of your life. So David would write “The Lord is my Rock.” It meant that God was the strength of his life, his stability, his sure and concrete reality, his anchor. We must know Him as God. But we must also know Him as the Rock. When you cling to Him, when you don’t let go, when He becomes the one sure, concrete reality in your life – then He becomes your Rock. When you anchor your feelings, your desires, your emotions, your thoughts to His reality; when you make Him the foundation on which all those things stand – then He becomes your Rock. And in times of great unrest and change, it is all the more crucial that you make Him so. And if you will root and ground and build your life upon this Rock, you will become strong and immoveable. As it is written: “God is our refuge, a very present help in time of need. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, and though the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.”
This month make it your aim to know God as the Tsor, the Rock, and make Him the Rock of every part of your life, the Rock of your heart, mind, soul, and strength. And may the Lord greatly bless you as you do.
Your brother and co-laborer
in His love and service,