On Thursday’s I’ve been focused on fathoming God by investigating His names. If you want to follow the studies completed, you’ll find a list of them under the inspiration link at the top, or you can use this one. Today’s study is over Jehovah Tsidkenu (Sid-canoe). This name of God blows my mind. In my attempt to fathom God, this name seems almost unfathomable.
Jehovah Tsidkenu means the Lord is our Righteousness. On the surface, that doesn’t seem like such a big deal. Not compared to our Healer, Jehovah Rapha, or our Provider, Jehovah Jireh. Those names offer things like healing and provision that can be witnessed. And yet Jehovah Tsidkenu hits the same realm as Jehovah M’Kaddesh, the God who Sanctifies. The thing we need the most is His Sanctification and Righteousness.
The name is mentioned in Jeremiah 23:6 and 33:16. It’s interesting to note that this name came up when Israel was at its most wicked time. The kingdom of Judah, full of idolatry and violence, was about to go into exile. The northern kingdom had already been gone for 100 years. Into the failure of God’s people, His prophet spoke these words. “In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, ‘The LORD our righteousness.'”
And that’s the part that so amazes me. When we are at our lowest, our worst, He becomes our righteousness. The root word, Tsedek means to justify, declare innocent, be right. And our God will always do the right thing, because He Himself is righteousness.
Chew on that for a minute. Even before Christ took on our sin and clothed us with His righteousness, God was the righteousness of His people. In Exodus, Pharoah declared it (9:27). The Psalmist proclaimed it (129:4). In Deuteronomy, He’s is perfect and without iniquity (32:4). He declares Himself just in Isaiah 45:21.
So our perfect God wanted to have a relationship with us. And here we are in disgust of sin. Romans 3:10 says there isn’t anyone who’s righteous, and Isaiah calls the best that we have to offer filthy rags (64:6). We have no righteousness, no goodness within ourselves.
But the prophet Isaiah in 61:10 addressed the needs that we have but can’t solve ourselves. “I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness.” Wow! In the midst of the rebellion of God’s people He gave them the hope of perfection. His perfection since they wouldn’t have the ability to develop any of their own.
And don’t even let me get started on how Jesus completed this promise of righteousness and included us in the picture! Grace upon Grace!
Your Turn: What name of God has surprised you so far?