"When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him?" -Psalm 8:3-4
Have you ever had a "David moment"? Where you just stop and stare at the vastness of the sky, or maybe behold something so grand and overpowering that you just think to yourself, "The same God who created this made me and wants to have a relationship with me. Why? I am so undeserving."
It is truly a humbling and overwhelming feeling. Even more so, to think about how much more we know about the sky, space, planets, and the various galaxy's today versus back when David wrote this Psalm; surely we have more knowledge to add to our astonishment!
Today we look at God's name Yahweh.
This isn't a title given to Him, but rather a personal name He has told His people to call Him in the Old Testament. And just like other people's names carry different meanings, God's name Yahweh means "self-existent one".
What does that mean exactly?
It means that God is self-existing and eternal. Nothing created Him, and He is not depending on anything for His mean of existence.
J.I. Packer touches on God's self-existence in this quote:
“Our Maker exists in an eternal, self-sustaining, necessary way—necessary, that is, in the sense that God does not have it in Him to go out of existence, just as we do not have it in us to live forever. We necessarily age and die, because it is our present nature to do that; God necessarily continues forever unchanged, because it is His eternal nature to do that. This is one of many contrasts between creature and Creator.”
All of these attributes of God are packaged up into the name Yahweh. While reading Old Testament texts, we see the name "Yahweh" translated as LORD (all capitalized letters).
"Then Moses said to God, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ” God also said to Moses, “Say this to the people of Israel: ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations." - Exodus 3:13–15
God is self-existent- "I AM WHO I AM". He is eternal, never changing, and contains all essence of life. Therefore when we read "LORD", we read it through the lens of His being: He is the Alpha and Omega; One who is, and who is to come.
"The LORD is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid?" - Psalm 27:1
Not only is God self-existent, but He is also personal.
In this passage of Psalms, David is on the run from violent evildoers who were lying about him and wanting to kill him. However, instead of looking at the situation in which he was in, he looked with faith towards God- the ultimate protector and sustainer.
Let's look at this verse with the name Yahweh in mind:
"The eternal, unchanging Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom shall I fear?
The Creator of life is the stronghold of my life;
of whom shall I be afraid?
He is our light in the darkness and our victory within our weakness. Even in the midst of life-threatening terror, David found complete peace and courage by abiding in Yahweh.
Surely worshipping a God who contains these qualities should bring us to have yet another "David moment". Why us? Why would an eternal God who created the awe-inspiring sky, space, planets, and galaxies want anything to do with us? Or even more so, why would he choose us to be made in His image?
We are meaningful because He has made us meaningful. It is through the sheer precision of His will that He made us and it is this act that gives every one of us incredible value. We don't have to strive to be valued according to what the world might say. God made us in His image and, therefore, we have value.
Think about that for a second- the Self-Existent One has called you significant. Truly, that is an utmost title.
Do you live your life today as if God is who He says He is?
- He is the same, unchanging God we read about in the Bible keeping covenants and faithfully providing for His people.
- He is the Creator of life (including yours), with which He sovereignly governs.
- He is not dependent on anyone or anything, but simply is, always was, and always will be.
The all-powerful, eternal God whose very essence gives life to everything; This same God actively works and desires to have a relationship with you and I. A fact we so carelessly forget and take for granted. Let us all constantly live in the glorious mindset of being undeserving, and continually have our awe-inspired eyes point back to our self-existent Creator.