In Proverbs 18:10, Solomon wrote that “the name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” What exactly does that mean? How is the name of the Lord a strong tower? What is a strong tower?
To understand how the name of the Lord is a strong tower for us today, we’ll break the verse into four parts and go deeper into each.
- The name of the LORD
- A strong tower
- The righteous
What Is the Name of the Lord?
A name is a powerful thing. This was more widely understood in ancient times than it is now, but it is still true, nonetheless. A name carries the identity of the person named. It is who they are.
In Proverbs 18:10, the word used for LORD is Yahweh so it can be read “the name of Yahweh is a strong tower…” This is speaking of God’s character, the entirety of who he is. Throughout the Bible, it refers to God himself as our strength, our rock, our fortress, etc. God and his name are one and the same.
When you hear the name of someone you know, you have an inner vision of them because the name carries all that you know about them. This means that a name carries a person’s reputation.
We can see how God’s name, or reputation, preceded him in the Book of Joshua. When God was leading Israel into the Promised Land, Joshua sent men into Jericho to spy out the land. They were discovered, and protected, by a woman named Rahab who made this declaration to them:
We have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea for you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to Sihon and Og, the two kings of the Amorites east of the Jordan, whom you completely destroyed. When we heard of it, our hearts melted in fear and everyone’s courage failed because of you, for the Lord your God is God in heaven above and on the earth below (Joshua 2:10-11).
By faith, Rahab tapped into the name of the LORD, and she and all her family were kept safe when the city of Jericho was destroyed.
How Is the Name of the Lord a Strong Tower?
The name of the LORD is a strong tower. Some translations use terms such as fortified tower, strong fortress, mighty tower, tower of strength, and in one translation is simply says “great strength.”
A tower is something that is tall, or high. The name of the LORD is high.
Let them praise the name of the LORD because his name is high above all others. His glory is above heaven and earth (Psalm 148:13).
The tower is strong. Strength is manifested in numerous ways. Words the dictionary uses to convey how strength is conveyed are: physical, mental, competence, influence, moral power, effectiveness, healthy, means to resist attack, uncompromising, well-supplied, clear, and firm, and thriving.
The name of the LORD that is a strong tower is high above your problem, providing all you need.
Who Is Righteous?
There are two things here. The righteous, referring to the person, and the action “run.”
Who is the righteous this verse is talking about? Righteousness according to the Bible is being in right standing with God. This is something no one can achieve on their own. For anyone to attain righteousness they must receive it from God.
For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ! (Romans 5:17).
What is the significance of the action run? Running is simply faster than walking. However, the word used in the original text implies urgency. It is more accurately translated rush, or hurry how it’s written in this translation:
The name of the LORD is a strong tower; a righteous person rushes to it and is lifted up above the danger (ISV).
Can We Feel Safe in the Strong Tower?
What does it mean to be safe? The verse above says, “Lifted up above the danger.”
The dictionary defines being safe as protected from or not exposed to danger or risk; not likely to be harmed or lost.
Other translations of the verse use words like set on high, set safely on high, be safe, is safe, shall be exalted, be strengthened, and are protected.
Looking at the word in the original language we get these phrases: inaccessibly high, too high for capture, and set on high far above evil.
In the verse that follows, Solomon identifies an “imagined” place of safety.
The wealth of the rich is their fortified city; they imagine it a wall too high to scale (Proverbs 18:11).
Imagined safety isn’t true safety. The name of the Lord is where true safety and protection are found.
The name of the LORD is a strong tower when we are scared, when we are ill, when we are lost, when we are confused, when we are sad, when we are threatened, when we are weak, when we are overwhelmed, and even when we are struggling financially. Always.
The safety that the name of the LORD provides is multi-faceted and trustworthy. No wonder the righteous rush toward it. By faith, we can rush to the name of the LORD and find safety at any time.
We Can Call on His Name
The name of the LORD represents all that he is and has for us — love, mercy, grace, power, righteousness, and more. David called on the name of the LORD throughout his life and tasted the deliverance of God. Here are a few examples:
From the ends of the earth, I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me (Psalm 61:2-3).
Hear me, my God, as I voice my complaint protect my life from the threat of the enemy. Hide me from the conspiracy of the wicked, from the plots of evildoers (Psalm 64:1-2).
Deliver me from my enemies, O God; be my fortress against those who are attacking me. Deliver me from evildoers and save me from those who are after my blood (Psalm 59:1-2).
The LORD is my protector; he is my strong fortress. My God is my protection, and with him I am safe. He protects me like a shield; he defends me and keeps me safe (Psalm 18:2).
For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock (Psalm 27:5).
Call on the name of the Lord. Three times it is written that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
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Danielle Bernock is an international, award-winning author, coach, and speaker who helps people embrace their value and heal their souls through the power of the love of God. She’s written Emerging With Wings, A Bird Named Payn, Love’s Manifesto, Because You Matter, and hosts the Victorious Souls Podcast. A long-time follower of Christ, Danielle lives with her husband in Michigan near her adult children and grandchildren. For more information or to connect with Danielle https://www.daniellebernock.com/