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Name of God - Shaphat: Judge

Shaphat: Judge

Daily Verse: “You could not possibly do such a thing: to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. You could not possibly do that! Won’t the Judge of all the earth do what is just?’”

Genesis 18:25 HCSB


Let's Talk About It: Abraham refers to God here as Shaphat (shaw-fat) or judge in Hebrew. While it can mean judge, it can also mean to vindicate or punish, to govern, to litigate, to avenge, plead, reason, and rule according to the Strong’s Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary of the Old Testament. The KM Hebrew Dictionary states that it may also mean to be brought to trial or to argue a matter. No wonder, then, why Holy Spirit is called our Advocate (John 14:26) and Jesus Christ is referred to as our Mediator (1 Timothy 2:5).

In this verse for today we see Abraham pleading that God would spare the righteous from the wicked. He is concerned for his nephew who lived in Sodom, Lot. As Abraham petitioned God, he complimented Him. How many of us have done the same when petitioning our parents or perhaps our spouse? I know when my son comes up to me and begins a conversation with, “so how is my beautiful mother doing today?” he is feeling me out to see if it is a good time to ask for something. Honestly, even though I know this is the case, it doesn’t bother me. It is evident in this chapter, the same is so for God – Abraham’s compliments and his understanding of who God is tugs on God’s heartstrings and God goes from having to find fifty righteous people to ten.

This is a complete picture of what Christ accomplished for us. He mediates on our behalf to the Father, just as Abraham did in this verse for Lot. Jesus reminds God that He has atoned for our sins. Furthermore, the Holy Spirit within us advocates that we are, indeed, children of God. When Shaphat gazes upon us, He sees His Son.  

This has taken me a long time to realize. For years, I continued to refer to myself as a sinner, even knowing Christ. However, I am no longer a sinner. I am now a child of God, and a friend of God. As Rodney Howard-Browne states, we are no longer sinners, and shouldn’t say that. Rather we should say, “I was a sinner but now saved by grace, I am now a righteous man/woman of God in Christ.” As we continue to walk with God and seek first the Kingdom of God, we are being sanctified by the Holy Spirit. In fact, the Word of God says that “He who began a good work in us will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Phil. 1:6).” That is assurance! In addition to that assurance, we have Romans 8:38-39.

Allow me to encourage you today, friend, Shaphat is the Judge, but He is just, and if Jesus is Lord of your life, you have an advocate. If God were to bring you to trial today as a believer, Jesus would be your attorney! Just like attorneys do in our culture, Jesus would strike a deal – a life for a life. The Good News is, He already gave His life for ours! Hallelujah! - Crystal

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