RISE UP: Qum (Strong’s 6965).

Root: קום

Sounds like: koom

The action to rise is all over the Bible. People rose up, got up from their seats, stood, and moved from where they were. This was probably the most generic use of the Hebrew word qum… to get up and go. But the call to rise had deeper significance. 

YHWH, Please Rise Up!

Rising up against evil was a common refrain:

Psalm 94:16-17

Who will rise up [yaqum] for me against evildoers? Who will take his stand for me against those who do injustice?

People frequently called on God to rise up against those who did evil::

Numbers 10:35

[Moses:]Rise up [qumah], YHWH! And may Your enemies be scattered, and those who hate You flee from Your presence.”

Psalm 3:7-8

Arise [qumah], YHWH; save me, my God! For You have struck all my enemies on the cheek; You have shattered the teeth of the wicked. Salvation belongs to YHWH; may Your blessing be upon Your people! Selah

Psalm 7:6

Arise [qumah], YHWH, in Your anger; raise Yourself against the rage of my enemies, and stir Yourself for me; You have ordered judgment.

Psalm 9:19-20

Arise [qumah], YHWH, do not let mankind prevail; let the nations be judged before You. Put them in fear, YHWH; let the nations know that they are merely human. Selah

Psalm 10:12

Arise [qumah], YHWH; God, lift up Your hand. Do not forget the humble.

Psalm 17:13

Arise [qumah], YHWH, confront him, make him bow down; save my soul from the wicked with Your sword.

Psalm 44:26

[To YHWH:] Rise up [qumah], be our help, and redeem us because of Your mercy.

Psalm 74:22-23

Arise [qumah], God, and plead Your own cause; remember how the foolish person taunts You all day long. Do not forget the voice of Your adversaries, the uproar of those who rise against You [qameka], which ascends continually.

Psalm 82:8

Arise [qumah], God, judge the earth! For You possess all the nations.

Psalm 132:8

Arise [qumah], YHWH, to Your resting place, You and the ark of Your strength.

People held onto the hope that YHWH would rise up and protect them. They called on YHWH to remember them and not turn His face away from them. Ironic, isn’t it, that that is exactly what they did to Him.

Idols. Let them Rise Up and Save You.

Eventually the people turned away from YHWH, they forgot Him and they turned instead to the pagan gods of their neighbours. It took a crisis for them to remember YHWH, and when that happened He had much to say to them:

Jeremiah 2:27b-28a

[YHWH:] “For they have turned their backs to Me, and not their faces; but in the time of their trouble they will say, ‘Arise [qumah] and save us!’

But where are your gods which you made for yourself? Let them arise [yaqumu], if they can save you In the time of your trouble!”

YHWH facetiously asked, “can the wood and stone gods that you worship save you?” In Moses’ Song the same question was asked, and YHWH answered:

Deuteronomy 32:36-39

“For YHWH will vindicate His people, and will have compassion on His servants, when He sees that their strength is gone, and there is none remaining, bond or free.

And He will say, ‘Where are their gods, the rock in which they took refuge? Those who ate the fat of their sacrifices, and drank the wine of their drink offering? Let them rise up [yaqumu] and help you, Let them be your protection!

See now that I, I am He, and there is no god besides Me; It is I who put to death and give life. I have wounded and it is I who heal, and there is no one who can save anyone from My hand.’”

YHWH will Rise Up

Holding onto the promise that YHWH was the only God who could rise up and save them, Isaiah announced that YHWH had specific work to do:

Isaiah 28:21

For YHWH will rise up [yaqum] as at Mount Perazim, He will be stirred up as in the Valley of Gibeon, to do His task, His unusual task, and to work His work, His extraordinary work.

This was not a God who sat still; this was The God who would rise up and get to work… the extraordinary job of saving His human family. 

But all was to be done in His own time. Sometimes YHWH would wait until it was obvious to the people that He was needed. When we are at our lowest we recognize that the only way we can rise up is if YHWH rises up on our behalf:

Psalm 12:5

“Because of the devastation of the poor, because of the groaning of the needy, now I will arise [aqum],” says YHWH; “I will put him in the safety for which he longs.”

YHWH has always been waiting for us. He wants to have a relationship with us where we rely on Him and not ourselves:

Isaiah 33:5-10

YHWH is exalted, for He dwells on high; He has filled Zion with justice and righteousness. And He will be the stability of your times, a wealth of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge; the fear of YHWH is his treasure.

Behold, their brave men cry out in the streets, the ambassadors of peace weep bitterly. The highways are desolate, the traveler has ceased, he has broken the covenant, he has despised the cities, he has no regard for mankind.

The land mourns and wastes away, Lebanon is shamed and withers; Sharon is like a desert plain, and Bashan and Carmel lose their foliage.

Now I will arise [aqum],” says YHWH, “Now I will be exalted, now I will be lifted up.”

Feeling Sorry for Yourself? Rise Up!

Once the relationship with YHWH was established we were expected to rise up for God! 

When Joshua led the people into Canaanite territory they struggled. The Amorites overwhelmed them and they felt demoralized. Joshua whined and moaned over their desperate situation, but YHWH wouldn’t let him wallow in the depths:

Joshua 7:10

So YHWH said to Joshua, “Rise up [Qum!]! Why is it that you have fallen on your face?”

No matter how tough things get, we are never meant to wallow in the dust. We ought to rise up, face our challenges, and make a difference in this world.

Isaiah 52:2

Shake yourself from the dust, rise up [qumi], captive Jerusalem; release yourself from the chains around your neck, captive daughter of Zion.

YHWH will rise up and fight the battles so that we can rise up and live well, as His image bearers, in this world.

Rising Up out of the Grave

Of course, for many of us, the Biblical rising up that comes to mind is Yeshua (Jesus) rising out of the grave on the third day after his death on the cross. Rising out of the grave is a traceable theme in the Old Testament:

Job 14:7-14a

“For there is hope for a tree, when it is cut down, that it will sprout again, and its shoots will not fail. Though its roots grow old in the ground, and its stump dies in the dry soil, at the scent of water it will flourish and produce sprigs like a plant.

But a man dies and lies prostrate. A person passes away, and where is he?

As water evaporates from the sea, and a river becomes parched and dried up, so a man lies down and does not rise [w-lo yaqum]. Until the heavens no longer exist, he will not awake nor be woken from his sleep.

Oh that You would hide me in Sheol, that You would conceal me until Your wrath returns to You, that You would set a limit for me and remember me! If a man dies, will he live again?

The Psalmists also wondered this:

Psalm 88:10-12

Will You [God] perform wonders for the dead? Or will the departed spirits rise [yaqumu] and praise You? Selah

Will Your graciousness be declared in the grave, Your faithfulness in Abaddon? Will Your wonders be made known in the darkness? And Your righteousness in the land of forgetfulness?

When people wished ill-will on another, a common refrain was the hope that their enemies would go to the grave and not rise up again:

Psalm 41:7-10

[David:] All who hate me whisper together against me; they plot my harm against me, saying, ‘A wicked thing is poured out upon him, so that when he lies down, he will not get up [rise: la-qum] again.’

Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted up his heel against me. But You, YHWH, be gracious to me and raise me up [w-ha-qimeni], that I may repay them.

David’s enemies wished he would go to the grave and not rise from it, but that was the same hope adopted by the early Israelites. They also wished that their enemies would go to the grave and stay buried. Their hope for themselves was much different. They held onto the hope that they, as followers of YHWH, would rise up from the grave:

Isaiah 26:12-14, 19

YHWH, You will establish peace for us, since You have also performed for us all our works.

YHWH, our God, other masters besides You have ruled us; but through You alone we confess Your name.

The dead will not live, the departed spirits will not rise [bal yaqumu]; therefore You have punished and destroyed them, and You have eliminated all remembrance of them…

… [But] Your dead will live; their corpses will rise [y-qumun]. You who lie in the dust, awake and shout for joy, for your dew is as the dew of the dawn, and the earth will give birth to the departed spirits.

Being an Israelite wasn’t enough to rise up from the grave. So then, who would be the ones to rise up?

Psalm 24:1-5

The earth is YHWH’s, and all it contains, the world, and those who live in it. For He has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers.

Who may ascend onto the hill of YHWH? And who may stand [arise: yaqum] in His holy place?

One who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to deceit and has not sworn deceitfully.

He will receive a blessing from YHWH and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

Image by Constant Loubier (unsplash.com)

In the New Testament, what comes to mind when we hear the phrase raising up was Yeshua’s miraculous resurrection from death. Later in His ministry, Yeshua made it clear to His disciples what would happen to Him in the near future:

Mark 8:31-33

And He [Jesus] began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise [Greek: anastenai] from the dead. And He was stating the matter plainly. 

And Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him. But turning around and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind Me, Satan; for you are not setting your mind on God’s purposes, but on man’s.”

Peter couldn’t imagine his Rabbi suffering such a fate and Yeshua responded with what sounded like harsh words, but ultimately Jesus was saying to Peter, this is God’s plan of victory. If you stop it, you’re on the wrong side.

Yeshua’s death and resurrection was the apex of His story. It was the healing point for the nations, for every human on the planet, and every human that would come after. We were healed because He was wounded and bore our punishment. It was His destiny, and it was the will of YHWH who sent Yeshua to be our Saviour:

John 6:37-40

[Jesus:] “Everything that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I certainly will not cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that of everything that He has given Me I will lose nothing, but will raise [anasteso] it up on the last day. For this is the will of My Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise [Greek anasteso] him up on the last day.

After Yeshua suffered and died on the cross, the women went to His tomb with spices to anoint Him, but when they got there the stone was rolled away and His body was gone:

Luke 24:4-10

While they were perplexed about this, behold, two men suddenly stood near them in gleaming clothing; and as the women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, the men said to them, “Why are you seeking the living One among the dead? He is not here, but He has risen [Greek: egerthe]. Remember how He spoke to you while He was still in Galilee, saying that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinful men, and be crucified, and on the third day rise [Greek: anastenai] from the dead.” 

And they remembered His words, and returned from the tomb and reported all these things to the eleven, and to all the rest. Now these women were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James; also the other women with them were telling these things to the apostles.

The will of YHWH was for Yeshua to be our Saviour, the one who would repair the damage done in Eden, and reunite us with YHWH. God’s will for us is to reflect His love upon this broken world, and lead others to the Kingdom. Paul put it this way:

Ephesians 5:11-17

Do not participate in the useless deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. For this reason it says,

“Awake, sleeper, and arise [Greek: anasta] from the dead, and the Messiah will shine on you.”

So then, be careful how you walk, not as unwise people but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 

Raising the Temple

After Yeshua’s death and resurrection, His followers became the Living Temple on earth. The Spirit of YHWH was sent to live within us so that we could bear His Image and be His Reflection to those around us. Paul put it this way:

1 Corinthians 3:16

Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

When Solomon built the Temple he called on God to rise up and inhabit the space:

2 Chronicles 6:41-42

[Solomon’s Prayer of Dedication for the Temple:] “Now, my God, please, let Your eyes be open and Your ears attentive to the prayer offered in this place.

Now then arise [qumah], YHWH God, to Your resting place, You and the ark of Your might; let Your priests, YHWH God, be clothed with salvation, and let Your godly ones rejoice in what is good.

YHWH God, do not turn away the face of Your anointed; remember Your faithfulness to Your servant David.”

Before Solomon built the Temple, the moveable Tabernacle housed the Presence of God. The word qum (to raise) was used to describe the building of this early House of God:

Exodus 40:17-19 

Now in the first month of the second year, on the first day of the month, the tabernacle was erected [raised up: hu-qam]. Moses erected [raised: wai-ya-qem] the tabernacle and laid its bases, and set up its boards, and inserted its bars, and erected its pillars. And he spread the tent over the tabernacle and put the covering of the tent on top of it, just as YHWH had commanded Moses.

Yeshua understood the Hebrew word qum in the context of raising the Temple, and applied it to His teaching: 

John 2:18-19

The Jews then said to Him [Jesus], “What sign do You show us as your authority for doing these things?” 

Jesus answered them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” 

The Jews then said, “It took forty-six years to build this temple, and yet You will raise it up in three days?” 

But He was speaking about the temple of His body. So when He was raised from the dead, His disciples remembered that He said this; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had spoken.

The book of Job is an incredible reflection on God as Redeemer. In the Book God rises up and saves Job, but Job understood that it wasn’t just him being saved; God would save the world:

Job 19:25

“Yet as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last, He will take His stand [yaqum] on the earth.”

This was divine success, but a more literal translation of Job 19:25 would be:

“And I know my Redeemer lives, and at last, above the dust, He will rise [yaqum].”

Standing on the earth sounded triumphant enough, but rising above the dust, from which humankind was made, produced a grander picture of YHWH’s victorious plan. The Son of Man was more than human; He was God’s Son, raised up on the cross to pay for our transgressions. He rose above mankind and saved us at last! That was what victory looked like! And that’s the kind of God we have… One that will rise up as our Saviour, so that we can rise up and be with Him!

Isaiah 60:1-2

Arise [qumi], shine; for your light has come, and the glory of YHWH has shone upon you.

For behold, darkness will cover the earth and deep darkness the peoples; but YHWH will shine upon you and His glory will appear upon you.”

Next week: Kidney/Mind

Post Script:

I chose the word qum, this week, because of an exciting prospect this Spring. I will be the 3 day teacher at the upcoming Women’s Retreat at Camp Keir in Prince Edward Island, Canada. The theme is “Rise Up!”, with a focus on women leadership in the church. It’s time for women to Rise Up in our faith communities. Women are called, not to be complacent or comfortable but, to stand in the midst of this broken world and reflect God’s love:

Isaiah 32:8-13

But the noble person devises noble plans; and by noble plans he rises [yaqum].

Rise up [qom’nah], you women who are at ease, and hear my voice; listen to my word, you complacent daughters.

Within a year and a few days you will be troubled, you complacent daughters; for the vintage is ended, and the fruit gathering will not come.

Tremble, you women who are at ease; be troubled, you complacent daughters; strip, undress, and put sackcloth on your waist,

Beat your breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vine, for the land of my people in which thorns and briars will come up; indeed, for all the joyful houses and for the jubilant city.

Women have the responsibility to rise up and mourn for the land and the people in it. It is not the time to sit comfortably and passively. We are called to make a difference and be God’s image bearers on this planet, by rising up and leading people back to YHWH.

Women, I’d love it if you’d come and join us at the Retreat, the first weekend in June 2022. Let’s stop being complacent! Instead, let’s rise up and lead people to victory! Registration is only $55 (Cdn) if you sign up before May 4th, and that includes cabin accommodation and meals! Prince Edward Island is a beautiful vacation spot, with lots of beaches and great restaurants for you to explore! If you have any questions about the event, or traveling to the Island, feel free to drop me a line at hebrewwordlessons@gmail.com 

Rise Up A



2 thoughts on “Qum: RISE UP!”

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