The Lord appeared to him from far away.
I have loved you with an everlasting love;
therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you. (ESV)
The Lord appeared from of old to me [Israel], saying, Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with loving-kindness have I drawn you and continued My faithfulness to you. (AMP)
God told them, “I’ve never quit loving you and never will.
Expect love, love, and more love! (MSG)
Long ago the Lord said to Israel:
“I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love.
With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself. (NLT)
From afar Yahweh he appeared to me and-love-of eon I-love-you onso I-draw-you kindness/with covenant loyalty. (Hebrew Interlinear)
Ok, I am going to come clean…as you may already know, I am a total word ‘nerd’. I love delving into the meanings of words, the etymology of where those words originated. It is great that the average person is able to enter into the Word through various translations that fit better with more modern language, but I find that often, when I look at the original Hebrew or Greek words, the things that God is expressing explode off the page in a new way, helping me better understand His heart. So much has been lost in translation in the attempt to help the Word become more accessible.
Once again, in today’s reading, a verse that I am very familiar with was deepened by looking onto the Hebrew; it gave me better understanding of the depth of what God was sharing with Israel, and with me today.
The word that was highlighted for me today is the word “everlasting” which literally translated from the Hebrew is the word “eon”.
God loves me with eons…
He loves me for all ages, always and forever, continuously, eternally, forevermore, permanently, perpetually. He loves me indefinitely, during the lifetime of my existence, of the existence of the things of earth.
All of these meanings blow me away with the enormity, the vastness of His love for me. But as I looked deeper, the word eon also means vital force and life.
God’s love is my vital life force. His love is imperative to my life, critical and essential to my being. His love is something He freely gives, all the time, every moment of the day, regardless of my choices. He loves me when I am walking with Him, and He loves me when I have disconnected. And, He even loved me with His everlasting love when I was still a sinner, running from Him as fast as I could.
Yesappa, Thank You for loving me, so completely. Thank You for being my life force. Thank You for drawing me to You always. Help me love You more in return, holding on to the truth of Your covenant loyalty. Help me love others with Your love. Help me keep my love on like Your light in the world. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Blessings – Julie (writing from the U.S.A.)
Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.