My Lord, my God, My Jehovah Elohim
Master creator of all the world agleam
Sun, moon, and stars in the sky abiding
Land and sea and all the creatures residing
You created our ancestors, Adam and Eve.
You created all beings, including me. (excerpt from my poem)
The first name of God we will look at is Jehovah Elohim. This name means God. Mighty One is another interpretation for Elohim. I picked this name to study first because we find it in Genesis 1:1, the first verse of the first book of the Bible. The name appears over 2000 time throughout scriptures. The Blue Letter Bible website define Elohim this way:
“Meaning and Derivation: Elohim is translated as “God.” The derivation of the name Elohim is debatable to most scholars. Some believe it derived from ‘êl which, in turn, originates from the root word, ‘wl (which means “strong”). Others think that Elohim is derived from another two roots: ‘lh (which means “god”) in conjunction with ‘elôah (which means “fear”). And still others presume that both ‘êl and Elohim come from ‘eloah.”https://www.blueletterbible.org/study/misc/name_god.cfm
The name Elohim is our first glimpse of God in the Bible. As is true of a first glimpse, we do not fully understand the true nature of God. His might and power are demonstrated in Genesis as God creates everything upon the earth and even the universe itself. The power of God is on full display in those early chapters of Genesis. With just a word, God creates the heavens. In what seems like minutes, we see all the beauty of nature created. He is the Almighty and all Powerful God.
Genesis 2:4 These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God (Elohim) made the earth and the heavens,
This moment of power show us the point in the story where many people get lost in religion. People can acknowledge the existence of a creator. Other faiths even recognize a God of creation. These people see God as a far off being that formed the world and then abandoned us to our ways. Holding this type of view of God keeps Him at a distance. In turn, such individuals would say they believed in God, but they have no personal relationship with Him.
Psalm 30:12 To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, (Elohim) I will give thanks unto thee for ever.
Throughout the Bible, we meet people who have a head knowledge of God without a heart knowledge of Him. As the Israelites wandered in the wilderness, they believed in a powerful, almighty God. But, when circumstances got complicated, they turned to idols to seek help. They knew God could strike them dead if they did something wrong, but they did not believe He could help them in times of trouble. Their beliefs became connected to a God who was only Elohim.
The Pharisees believed in the laws of God. They thought observance of the regulations kept them safe from the wrath of God. They believed in the Jehovah Elohim. But, they could not see beyond the rules and controls of their faith. Their faith became bound up in the edicts and not in the God behind them. They only understood God as Elohim.
For many, it took the appearance of Jesus Christ in the New Testament to shatter their notions of God as a distance, uncaring being. Jesus opened the way to move God from our heads to our hearts for those who only believed in a Jehovah Elohim. Christ helped us to grasp the importance of understanding the full nature of God. He modeled God for us, as seen in John 14:8-11:
The names of God help us move God from our head to our heart. Click To Tweet
8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” 9 Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. 11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves.https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+14%3A8-11&version=NIV
Jehovah Elohim demonstrates to us the awesome power of God. But, without looking at and studying the other names of God, we might also get stuck with an incomplete picture. God is the Almighty God, but He is so much more. The other names will help us move a distant God from the heavens to one who lives within us and cares for us. Next week, we will look at Jehovah El Roi, the God who sees us.
Yvonne – #blogger, #speaker, and #author
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”
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