Meaning and Importance of God's Name ‘El Roi’- The God Who Sees Me
The fifth name we want to consider is El-Roi. This is the second of the compound names that begin with El. This Hebrew name only appears one time in the Scriptures in Genesis 16:13. The English translation of El-Roi is “Thou God seest me.”
The Meaning of El-Roi
The name El-Roi means the strong one always sees. Even though this name only appears one time, the fact that God always sees His people is found all through out the Scriptures.
El-Roi the Strong One Who Sees
In Genesis 15:5-6 Jehovah promised Abram, “...Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and He said unto him, So shall thy seed be. And he [Abram] believed in the LORD [Jehovah], and He counted it to him for righteousness.” Ten years had passed since the LORD Jehovah promised a seed to Abram in Genesis 12:2, but no seed had yet been given. Abram’s wife, Sarai, thought she would help God out and made a plan to give her handmaid, Hagar, to Abram that she might obtain a seed through Hagar (Gen. 16:1-4). Sarai’s lack of faith and Abram’s lack of wisdom caused them many problems. Abram and Sarai were not doing anything new because it was a common practice in their day for men to have more than one wife in order for the family to have a male seed. Even though this was not a step of faith on Abram’s, Sarai’s, or Hagar’s part, God still showed great care for Hagar and the soon-to-be-born son, Ishmael.
Once Hagar conceived, she became proud towards Sarai, because Sarai could not conceive. As a result of this conflict, “Sarai dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face” (Gen. 16:6b). When Hagar fled from Sarai, she was met by the Angel of the LORD (Jehovah). This is the first time that the Angel of Jehovah appears in Scripture, and it is a preincarnate appearance of Jesus Christ. Even a lonely, Egyptian slave girl is cared for by Jehovah. When He saw her affliction, He told her to return to Sarai and submit to her. He promised to bless her by multiplying her seed exceedingly. Jehovah saw Hagar’s misery and depression, for the everlasting God cares and sees even the least of His creatures, and brings comfort and assurance. Hagar, who had formerly worshipped and prayed to stone idols, found that they did not see her. But Jehovah, the one true God of her master Abram, did see her and cared for her. In Genesis 16:13, “she called the name of the LORD [Jehovah] that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after Him that seeth me?” The well, that she was standing by as Jehovah met her, was called Beer-lahairoi, or a well of the living one who sees (Gen. 6:14).
In Genesis 31:42 God saw Jacob in his need as he fled from Laban. God also saw the affliction of His people Israel in Egypt (Ex. 2:23-25). In Psalm 139:1-12 we read that the LORD Jehovah sees everyone in their need. He sees us in our troubles and afflictions, in our misery and depression. He not only sees but comforts and cares for us in those times. Even though Jehovah directs and brings afflictions into our lives His purpose is to conform us into the image of Jesus Christ (Rom. 8:28-29). He sees when we respond properly. When the affliction has brought about mature Christ-likeness in us, then the trial, or affliction is removed or lessened. He may cause it to remain, but He gives us the special grace we need to sustain us (II Cor. 12:8-10). All things are open to God’s all-seeing eye, “neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked [uncovered] and opened [full view] unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do” (Heb. 4:13).
God sees us, He sees our needs, He knows how to meet our needs, and He can and will meet our needs. He can and will deliver us from the trouble we bring on ourselves or the troubles others bring on us. He helps us through our troubles and delivers us in His good time. Let us trust our wonderful God for He is El-Roi, the God who sees.
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