Giving God A Hug

It is written:

“You are to fear the LORD your God and serve him. Cling to him and swear by his name.” (Deuteronomy 10:20)

One of the beautiful truths revealed to us in Holy Scripture is that God created mankind to be the recipients of His grace and loving kindness. We were made for relationship. This truth is powerfully illustrated in this passage in Deuteronomy. Speaking of the word translated as “cling,” one Hebrew scholar informs us:

“I would like to focus on just one word in the above verse: “cling.” In the Hebrew, this word is devek (קבד). To render it as “to cling” is really to sell it short, since the idea is not like clinging to a rock or a tree during a storm so you do not get blown away. This word is an expression of love and respect—an embrace or a hug….Rabbinic literature teaches that a devek (קבד) is a high and deep stage of spiritual development in which the seeker attaches himself or herself to God and exchanges individuality for a profound partnership with Him. The force behind a devek (קבד) is a love of God and a desire for intimacy or closeness with Him. Is that or is that not the definition of a hug?…When reading Deuteronomy 10: 20, therefore, we must take note that God is not calling us to cling to Him like a parasite or a leech. This thing is two-sided. God will cling to us if we will cling to Him. He will give us a hug if we will give Him a hug. The picture is that of two lovers embracing each other. Devek (קבד) is not a group hug. It is a hug between two individuals—you and God. When God embraces you, it is as if there is no other being in this universe but you. He gives you His full, complete attention in a devek (קבד). God does not live within time. He does not know the barriers of the past or the future. Thus, He can move back and forth through time as easily as we walk through air. He can spend each second and moment with you, and then just move through time and spend each second and moment with me. I believe that is how He is omnipresent. You have His complete and full attention every second of your life. He has nothing else to do but stand in front of you with His arms open wide, waiting for you to step into those arms so He can give you a devek (קבד), or a hug. We usually come to God with a handful of “give me’s.” Yet if you wanted to protect the heart of the person you love most, the easiest thing to do would be to give that person a hug. Similarly, to protect the heart of the God whom you love, you need to take a little time to enter into a devek (קבד) and allow Him to give you a hug, and then give Him a hug in return. Fear the Lord, serve the Lord, and—while you are at it—give Him a devek (קבד).” (Chaim Bentorah, Hebrew Word Study: Revealing The Heart Of God, 508-547 (Kindle Edition); New Kensington, PA; Whitaker House)

Embrace the Lord today by submitting to Him and letting Him cleanse you of your sins. He will make you His son or daughter this very hour if you will seek Him with your whole heart (Acts 2:37-47).

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