The Name of God

God is called by many names in the Bible. In the very first verse of the first chapter of Genesis, He is introduced simply as….God. In the second chapter He is called the Lord God, and depending on your translation, God is referred to as The Lord orThe Lord God over 6000 times.

When He spoke to Abram, He called Himself both The Lord and God Almightyon separate occassions.

When God sent Moses to speak to the Israelites, Moses asked, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?”  God answered, I am who I amThis is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’”

So there we see another name for God – I AM, which depicts God as eternal.

Other names for God in English language Bibles include Immanuel,  Wonderful Counselor, Prince of Peace, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Faithful and True, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Abba, and  Heavenly Father. He also refers to Himself as the Good Shepherd, the Gatekeeper, the Gardener, and the Faithful Witness. Of course, this is not an all inclusive list. These are just some of the names of God that we can find in our Bibles, so I think you get the idea.

Likewise, the Hebrew language also has many names for God, names that often call attention to a particular quality or characteristic of God.  For instance:

ELOHIM……meaning “God”, a reference to God’s power and might.

ADONAI……meaning “Lord”, a reference to the Lordship of God.

JEHOVAH–YAHWEH…..a reference to God’s divine salvation.

JEHOVAH-MACCADDESHEM…….meaning “The Lord thy sanctifier”

JEHOVAH-ROHI……meaning “The Lord my shepherd”

JEHOVAH-SHAMMAH…….meaning “The Lord who is present”

JEHOVAH-RAPHA……..meaning “The Lord our healer”

JEHOVAH-TSIDKENU……meaning “The Lord our righteousness”

JEHOVAH-JIREH………meaning “The Lord will provide”

JEHOVAH-NISSI………meaning “The Lord our banner”

JEHOVAH-SHALOM……..meaning “The Lord is peace”

JEHOVAH-SABBAOTH……meaning “The Lord of Hosts”

JEHOVAH-GMOLAH…….meaning “The God of Recompense”

EL-ELYON……….meaning “The most high God

EL-ROI……….meaning “The strong one who sees”

EL-SHADDAI………meaning “The God of the mountains or God Almighty”

EL-OLAM………..meaning “The everlasting God”

Those are just a few that I found using an internet search engine. My knowledge of Hebrew is next to nothing, so I don’t make any claims as to the accuracy of the meanings. And again that list is not all inclusive. According to some internet sources, the Hebrew language may have as many as 600 names for God.

Here is the point I’m trying to drive at. Whatever we call God, His name is to always be spoken with reverence. Whether we call Him God Almighty, the Lord God, Father, or whether we use one of the Hebrew names like Jehovah or Yahweh, always remember that His very name is Holy and we’re to speak it with respect. We don’t call Him by any name except what’s given in the Bible. His name is NOT, I repeat NOT “the big man upstairs”. He’s not the big kahuna, the big boss, the main man in charge, or the master blaster (as I heard someone call Him recently). His name is not…………the big guy. He is God. He is to be revered and His name is to be honored.

And it wouldn’t hurt if we stepped up and spoke up whenever we hear someone use one of those disrespectful terms. The Bible says Satan stands before God day and night, bringing accusations against us, and one can only imagine some of the names we’re called. But John said in his first epistle that in Christ, we have an advocate. He stands and defends believers before God the Father. And because Jesus Christ defends us, I think it’s only fitting that we defend His name. It’s not that God needs our help. But when we stand up for His Holy Name, it’s as W.A Criswell once said: God is magnified,and our own hearts are encouraged in the faith!