Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The richness of God's name "Elohim"

Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God (Elohim) created the heavens and the earth.

Yesterday we talked about the significance of the name "Elohim" or God in the Bible.  We mentioned that this name answers the first question we can ask when approaching the God of the Bible: "What kind of God is God"?  Today I wanted to continue giving some more details about this first name of the many names revealed in God's book.

The richness of God's name "Elohim"
The incredible reference work: "Theological Dictionary of Old Testament Words" contains an article that sheds much light on this incredible name of God "Elohim".  Note what it states from page 45: "When indicating the True God, 'Elohim' functions as the subject of all Divine activity revealed to man'".  God then is the subject, the source of His own revelation to us.  He reveals Himself generally through creation and the conscience,  specifically through the Bible and most gloriously through Jesus Christ in the Bible.....(Elohim) is the object of all true reverence and fear from men". 

According to the article God or Elohim is knowable.  He can be perceived in creation and the conscience. (Romans 1:18-31; Romans 2:15)  God or Elohim is then Personally known and relateable through scripture and the Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 10:8-15; John 14:1-8)

Elohim reveals what kind of God that Bible reveals and what He does
Again turning to the reference work I quoted from above, the name Elohim gives us five categories in which we can understand the being and work of God:

1. Work of Creation. Isaiah 45:18; Jonah 1:9

2. Sovereignty. Isaiah 54:5 (God or Elohim of all the Earth); Jeremiah 32:27 (God or Elohim of all flesh); (God of gods and Lord of Lords) Deuteronomy 10:17; and (God or Elohim Most High) Ps 57:2.

3. His Majesty or Glory. (God or Elohim of Eternity) Isaiah 40:28; (God or Elohim of Certainty) Isaiah 65:16.

4. His work of Salvation. (The God or Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) Exodus 3:6 and (The God or Elohim of Salvation) 1 Chronicles 16:35; Psalm 18:46.

5. Intimacy of God with His people. (The God or Elohim of Nearness) Jeremiah 23:23; (Your God or Elohim in Whom you Trust) 2 Kings 19:10 and (God or Elohim of my strength) Psalm 43:2. 

Thus "Elohim" or God is a rich name indeed!  In the Bible, this name is telling us what kind of God we are dealing with and that is dealing with us.  Praise be to His Wonderful greatness!