I have recently started a personal study on the names of God by collecting multiple websites that deal with this subject, and writing down my findings and defining each name of God that I come across. Throughout this study, I’m amazed at how many different names there are for our Creator. So far I’ve studied 17 (counting derivations), and I’m not even close to being done. The Israelites had so many names for the Almighty. I personally believe that if we all spent some time looking into this subject, we could have a better understanding and appreciation of who God is. Personally, this has helped me extremely in that area. If we are going to dedicate our lives to His service, we should be striving everyday to learn more about Him. In the real world, if you found yourself in the service of someone to whom you owed your entire existence, and someone who could take you from this world in a split second, would you not spend as much time as possible finding out what makes this person tick? What they like or dislike, who they are, and what they require from their servants? So I believe we should be doing this for our Creator. Our God is not only THE God, but also:
Adonay-HaAdonim – “The Lord of Lords”
Jehovah-Nissa – “The Lord My Banner”
Jehovah-Rapha – “The Lord who Heals”
El Kedem – “God of the Beginning”
Adonai – “Our Lord”
El Selichot – “God of Forgiveness”
El Tehilati – “God of My Praise”
And so much more. Personally, the names of God in their original language seem to be so full of beauty and majesty. God is in Himself each and every one of the descriptions.
I came across a quote during my study that I love:
“The names and titles of God mean that He is a ‘being’, not just a thought or idea. They declare to the world who He is while answering our deepest questions of who we are and what is our relationship to God, ourselves, and each other. God uses His titles as a help to clarify our deepest longings, as an assault to our reasonings and mindsets when we refuse His love.”
When we are feeling down or that we are in a spiritual desert, remember that our God is El Tzur, “God of Rock”. He will not move. He is Jehovah Rapha, “God who Heals” He alone can bring us out of our troubles and wipe our tears away.
When we feel that we are not worthy of His grace, that we have sinned too grievously to ask for His mercy, remember that He is El Selichot “God of Forgiveness”. He is always ready to welcome back all who repent. El Rachum “God of Compassion”. He tenderly loves each and every one of us. Jehovah-M’Kaddesh “The Lord who Sanctifies”. If we ask Him for forgiveness, He will sanctify us and make us whole again.
When we feel torn down by Satan and His forces, remember that our Creator is also Jehovah-Jireh “God my Provider” He will provide a way of escape, if not in this life, in the next. He is Adonay HaAdomin “Lord of Lords”. Satan and his angels are nothing compared to our God. He is also El Tz’vot “The Lord of Armies”. We belong to an army that will conquer in the end.
On the other hand, we also must remember that He is El Mishpat “God of Justice” , El Rahee “God who Sees”, El Emet “God of Truth”, and He is also Quanna “Jealous”. Among all the names that give us hope and encouragement, God wants us to remember that He will bring justice, to those who love Him and on those who disregard His holiness. He sees who truly desire the truth and those who are obeying His commands. He is jealous for those who He claims as His own. He will tolerate no divided camps between God and the world. There is truth, despite what modern culture tries to tell us, and God is only found in His truth. If you want God to be your Righteousness, Healer, Salvation, and so much more, you must be in His truth.
Furthermore, the most personal name we have for God is Yahweh, which was the name God gave to Himself in Exodus 6:3. This name was considered so holy, that the Jews wouldn’t even speak it aloud. (As a side note, in order to help the synagogue reader remember not to speak the name of God aloud, Jewish leaders combined the consonants YHWH with the vowels from the name “Adonai”, which became YaWhoWa. This has been transformed to the English name Jehovah.) The Israelites were so afraid of profaning the holiness of God. Contrast this with today’s culture, who uses God’s name so flippantly and irreverently. You can’t even live one day without hearing “Oh my God”, “Oh my gosh” somewhere. People say they have “Come to Jesus” talks if they need to set someone straight or get on to someone, not using it at all in the spiritual sense. Isn’t this just as flippant? Coming to Christ as our Creator is a solemn and holy thing. What has happened to us as a culture to use the name of our Almighty Creator in such an irreverent way unceasingly as we go about our everyday lives? We have to remember that every idle word will judge us in the last day. (Matt. 12:36) And what can be more idle and irreverent than using the name of our Creator to express our petty emotions in such a way?
I think all of this irreverence is partly because we have forgotten, or want to forget about, certain attributes of God. So many people today want to focus only on how loving, forgiving, and merciful God is. He’s your pal, that person who loves you so much and looks benevolently down on earth and says, “Oh it’s ok, just live however you want, I know that you love me, even though you don’t act like it most of the time.” God is love, don’t get me wrong. I thank God every day for the fact that He loves us so much that He has allowed me to wake up each day. But we also need to remember justice and anger are a part of the magnificent God we serve. His anger burns hot at sin, and the day of judgment will come when His wrath will out pour on those not worshiping His holiness and giving Him the respect He deserves.
Praise God for all that He is!