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  • Writer's pictureKaren O'Reilly

El Roi-The God Who Sees Me: Biblical Meaning (Pronouncing) And Praying The Names Of God.

Updated: Sep 13, 2022

Names of God Bible study

El Roi is the Hebrew name for God meaning the God who sees me. We discover this name of God in Genesis 16:14-15. We meet Hagar, an Egyptian slave, who encountered God in the desert and addressed Him as El-Roi, "the God who sees me."

We will discuss the story of Hagar below. This is the only time that we find this name of God used in the Bible but there is so much meaning contained within it, that describes the character of God.

Just like God saw Hagar, He sees you and me too!

El Roi is the One who numbers the hairs on your head (Luke 12:7). El Roi knows everything about you, He is concerned about you. El Roi knows your past, present, and future.

El Roi: The God Who Sees Me

Thereafter, Hagar used another name to refer to the Lord, who had spoken to her. She said, “You are the God who sees me.”[a] She also said, “Have I truly seen the One who sees me?”14 So that well was named Beer-lahai-roi (which means “well of the Living One who sees me”). It can still be found between Kadesh and Bered. Genesis 16:13-14.

Pronouncing The Name: El raw-EE

This is Day 3 of a 30 Day study on The Names Of God. If you haven't read the introduction yet, please start HERE

El Roi Meaning:

The first person to call God by the name El Roi was Hagar. Hagar was a maidservant to Sari, Abram's wife.

God came to Abram and gave him some astonishing news:

After Lot had gone, the Lord said to Abram, “Look as far as you can see in every direction—north and south, east and west.15 I am giving all this land, as far as you can see, to you and your descendants as a permanent possession.16 And I will give you so many descendants that, like the dust of the earth, they cannot be counted! Genesis 13:14-16.

Then the Lord said to him, “No, your servant will not be your heir, for you will have a son of your own who will be your heir.” Genesis 15:4.

Abram told Sari about God's promises, but as the months turned into years, Sari grew impatient with God and His promises. She told Abram that the Lord had kept her from having children and to go and sleep with her maidservant, that perhaps she could build a family through her.

I have to admit that at times I get frustrated waiting for things that God has promised me but I don't think that I would take that extreme action!

But in those ancient times, it was common practice for an infertile wife to offer her maid in order to keep the family name alive. So Abram agreed to what Sari had said. He slept with Hagar and she conceived.

When Hagar knew that she was pregnant, she began to despise her mistress. Sari became jealous and blamed Abram for the tension that this situation had caused. This is what Abram said to Sari:

Then Sarai said to Abram, “This is all your fault! I put my servant into your arms, but now that she’s pregnant she treats me with contempt. The Lord will show who’s wrong—you or me!”

6 Abram replied, “Look, she is your servant, so deal with her as you see fit.” Then Sarai treated Hagar so harshly that she finally ran away. Genesis 16:5-6.

Hagar: The God Who Sees Me:

Sari mistreated Hagar until she could bear it no more and she ran away. The angel of the Lord found Hagar in the desert and he said to her:

The angel said to her, “Hagar, Sarai’s servant, where have you come from, and where are you going?”

“I’m running away from my mistress, Sarai,” she replied.

9 The angel of the Lord said to her, “Return to your mistress, and submit to her authority.” Then he added, “I will give you more descendants than you can count.”11 And the angel also said, “You are now pregnant and will give birth to a son. You are to name him Ishmael (which means ‘God hears’), for the Lord has heard your cry of distress. Genesis 16:8-11.

God met Hagar in the desert.

Hagar was a slave who had been sexually used and verbally abused. Hagar was a woman amazed that God had heard her cries and had seen her misery. She was amazed that God had seen her plight and had actually spoken to her. This is what she said:

Thereafter, Hagar used another name to refer to the Lord, who had spoken to her. She said, “You are the God who sees me.” She also said, “Have I truly seen the One who sees me?” Genesis 16:13.

Hagar returned to her mistress and gave birth to a son and Abram called him, Ishmael.

Here is an interesting fact, did you know that Abram was 86 years old when his son was born?

God sees you

The God that Hagar met in the desert is a deeply personal and intimate God. He looks after Hagar and our daily needs. God loved Hagar and He loves us too.

God sees us. He sees you. He hears you!

God sees you right there in your weariness of motherhood.

God sees you in your pain, confusion, and suffering.

God sees you when you feel abandoned and you think that no one cares about you.

But the beautiful truth is that God is El Roi, the God who sees you.

God is calling you to come into His presence and when you practice His presence, you will never be the same!

El Roi sees your heartache, He wants you to let Him walk with you through it and to remind you that He has a good plan for you, Jeremiah 29:11

I have found the most beautiful short film that explains through song, the meaning of the God's name El Roi. You can watch it here.

Applying the name of God, El Roi to your life:

I have prepared a free printable for you to use as you explore the names of God. You will find it in our Resource Library Here.

This page has prompts for you to use as you prayerfully meditate on the names of God.

So who is El Roi to you?

How does knowing God as El Roi-the God who sees you impact your life?

How can you grow in your Christian walk by understanding God as El Roi?

In the midst of her difficulties, Hagar learned that El Roi was watching over her. God watches over you too.

Here are a few of my favorite Bible verses that speak of God watching over us:

The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. 2 Chronicles 16:9.

He will not let you stumble;

the one who watches over you will not slumber. Psalm 121:3.


The Lord himself watches over you! The Lord stands b