“Next to him, Ezer son of Jeshua, ruler of Mizpah, repaired another section, from a point facing the ascent to the armory as far as the angle. Next to him, Baruch son of Zabbai zealously repaired another section, from the angle to the entrance of the house of Eliashib the high priest.”
Last time we watched the two halves of Keilah lend a hand to their fellow countrymen. Today we see two men working on specific, assigned sections of the wall. Let’s take a quick look at our map:
See “Kidron Valley” in black letters near the bottom left? That’s near the section of the wall we are looking at in our verses. The number 5 labels the ascent to the armory (where Ezer worked) and 6 labels the House of Eliashib (what Baruch worked up to).
First we should talk about Ezer. His is a proper masculine name that means help, from the Hebrew azar – ally, helper, support, furthered. Because wonderful people pray for our family, sweet youngest asked in the car this week, “Is God a boy or a girl?” I went on a bit about how God is One in Three Persons Who said, “let us make man in our image”… male and female He created them. So men and women both have attributes of this glorious God.
Youngest interrupted and said, “Oh, I know. So God is boy and girl.” Huh.
That’s what I think about with these words ezer and azar. In the more detailed version of creation in Genesis 2, God talks about making a suitable helper for Adam: woman, ezer. But here it is used as a masculine name. And there are plenty of uses for God the Father being this role of helper.
Of course. He is the One from Whom our help comes.
I’ve been thinking about the role of Counselor. This title the Holy Spirit is given as Jesus would no longer walk bodily with His disciples, but would send a helper – an Advocate, Comforter.
Oh, how tender this God of ours. What a counselor, an intercessor, an ally for His children.
But that’s not all. The next sentence introduces Baruch who zealously (charah – burned, kindled with anger) chazaq (strengthened) the next section of the wall, up to the opening of Eliashib, the high priest’s house.
And these attributes also accurately represent our God, don’t they? He really is a consuming fire. He desires all of us, every motive and sin pattern and hidden place in our heart that is out of fellowship with Him and other image bearers. He wants to consume it all, burn away the junk, and make us more like His Son, like the Advocate inside us if we are born again of Him.
Why? Because just like Baruch, He isn’t zealous randomly or without cause. He’s zealous to strengthen, repair. His creation, His children, His Church.
Oh, and friends, not even that is random with our purposeful God. He isn’t just wanting us to be more like His Son because it seems like a good thing to do. I was reminded of this this week watching the final scene in The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, as Aslan crowns the Sons of Adam and the Daughters of Eve Kings and Queens of Narnia.
He is making us more like His Son here because it matters for our ability to rule there. Because in the Kingdom Come – the one that is already present here on earth but not quite fully – we will be given that dominion again: to reign over all creation with Him. Only this time the right way.
And let’s not leave out the mention of our high priest, Eliashib. His name means “God Restores.”
We all need an Advocate. One to plead our case before a holy and just and perfect God.
Thank the good goodness we have Yeshua.