“. . .then began men to call upon the Name of the Lord.”

Genesis 4:26b

There’s never a wrong time or place to do it.

Isn’t it amazing how there are times the Lord sneaks up on you when you least expect it?  Such is the case with today’s Manna—for the context is Eve’s giving birth to her third son, Seth, whom God gave her to replace Abel, who was murdered by his brother, Cain (Gen. 4:1-8, 25-26a).

Suddenly, out of nowhere, we find the words “. . .then began men to call upon the Name of the Lord.”  Does this mean no one had called upon Him before?  No, not at all—for Abel knew God’s heart well enough to know what type of sacrifice would please Him (v.4).  So, we can rest assured He communed with the Heavenly Father, even though nothing’s recorded about it.

Likewise, we must assume Adam and Eve continued crying out to God even after they were expelled from the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:22-24).  That’s why Eve said “I have gotten a man from the Lord” (4:1).  And, the same is implied when she said of Seth, “For God has appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew” (v.25).

But, the insertion of today’s Manna by Moses into the text leads us to believe Seth’s lineage was a Godly one that longed to know Him and do His will.  Later on Enoch would be born and “walked with God and was not—for God took him” (5:22, 24).  And, three generations later Noah was born and he, too, “was a just man, perfect in his generations and walked with God” (6:9).

Thus, we should ever remember that “calling upon the Name of the Lord” is an integral part of worship, both private and public.  The concerns may be different, but the “calling on Him” is the same.

There’s passion.  There’s purpose (intentionality).  There’s an “humbling of one’s self” (II Chron. 7:14a; James 4:6, 10).  There’s also a “seeking of His Face and repentance” (II Chron. 7:14b).  And, only those who are desperate. . .so often residing at “Wit’s End Corner” (Ps. 107:26-30). . .know what it means to really “call upon the Name of the Lord.”

A mother praying for a wayward son knows it.  A father weeping over the death of his spouse knows it.  An orphaned or abandoned child, crying himself to sleep at night, knows it.  A lonely soldier standing watch at an isolated outpost in a war zone knows it.

The Hebrew word “qara” is used here for “call upon” and means “to cry out, implore, beg, beseech, etc.”  And, when we realize the Heavenly Father doesn’t have to be coerced or compelled to hear and answer us—for He has said, “Call to Me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty (unsearchable) things you know not” (Jer. 33:4)—it suddenly dawns on us that we’re doing exactly what He desires.  Desperate desire that “delights itself in Him” always catches the Father’s ear and touches His Heart (Ps. 37:4).  Why not “call upon His Name” right now?  He wants to hear from you.

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated January 3, 2010

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