If you are ever to understand what it means to be Christian, that is if you claim to be Christian, then you must know more about who you call God and Father. A righteous man must never claim to be a child of an evil man, if he wants to work within his righteousness. But a man who wants to understand the righteousness of his father must come to know that righteousness.
Please note that the Hebrew here is from the Masoretic Text.
ELOHIYM: “God”, a reference to God’s power and might.
- Gen 1:1 NASB In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- Psalm 19:1 NASB For the choir director. A Psalm of David. The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.
Note that neither of those verse have any reference to man’s labor, nor any of that work is for God’s benefit, it was for us.
ADONAI: “Lord”, a reference to the Lordship of God, used to ridicule His followers.
- Malachi 1:6 NASB ‘A son honors his father, and a servant his master. Then if I am a father, where is My honor? And if I am a master, where is My respect?’ says the LORD of hosts to you, O priests who despise My name. But you say, ‘How have we despised Your name?’
- Malachi 1:8 NASB But when you present the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? And when you present the lame and sick, is it not evil? Why not offer it to your governor? Would he be pleased with you? Or would he receive you kindly?” says the LORD of hosts.
Notice that LORD here both are referring to men not giving unto God what is his. That is, he uses his own laws to ridicule the hearts of men. My paraphrase would be “You think me a fool? You provide to me the lesser, and keep for yourself the greater, knowing that I expect you to love me with all your heart, and your neighbor the same. How can I trust you to treat one another with loving compassion if you cannot even share it with me the one who gave you everything?” Of course my paraphrase takes in the wholeness of the bible for reference. I’ll discuss more of this in the next chapter Chapter 4: The Prophesy of the Law, and how it was fulfilled.
JEHOVAH-ELOHIYM: Lord of Creation
- Genesis 2:4 NASB 4 This is the account of the heavens and the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made earth and heaven. 5 Now no shrub of the field was yet in the earth, and no plant of the field had yet sprouted, for the LORD God had not sent rain upon the earth, and there was no man to cultivate the ground.
An artist can create art for his own sake, in which his glory is only in his own eyes as he peers into a mirror of his own work. Or that same artist can create art for the sake of sharing with others, in which his work becomes the representation of who he is. Jehovah-Elohiym is that creator, or builder, building to share with others. He takes the credit, because it was He who created it.
JEHOVAH-QADASH (Jahova-Maccaddeshem): The Lord thy sanctifier
- Exodus 31:13 NASB: 12 The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 13 “But as for you, speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘You shall surely observe My sabbaths; for this is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the LORD who sanctifies you. 14 Therefore you are to observe the sabbath, for it is holy to you. Everyone who profanes it shall surely be put to death; for whoever does any work on it, that person shall be cut off from among his people
Why did God say “You shall surely observe My Sabbaths;”? It was because it was a sign, a reminder that it was God who set them apart from the other people. It was God who saved them. It was God who labored. But like all things according to men, we have failed this too. Don’t worry though, the law wasn’t there to make your righteous, I’ll cover this later in Chapter 4: The Prophesy of the Law, and how it was fulfilled.
Another key thing to note, is that the people who don’t respect the Sabbath shall “surely be put to death”, but then it also says “that person shall be cut off from among his people”. Wait, are they to die or to be cut off. Well we have the answer here:
- 15 For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, holy to the LORD; whoever does any work on the sabbath day shall surely be put to death. 16 So the sons of Israel shall observe the sabbath, to celebrate the sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant.’ 17 It is a sign between Me and the sons of Israel forever; for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, but on the seventh day He ceased from labor, and was refreshed.”
Verse 17, God and the sons of Israel, this was a covenant for the Israelites. Leave the family, leave the house, and leave the promise. You are out. You are as among the dead. Stay in the household and don’t repent, then you will be punished by death. Follow the rules or leave. Simple as that. That is why the sacrifices prior to Christ Jesus were that of a lamb being slaughtered by a priest or released into the wilds and killed by the wolves. Rather than the person being killed themselves, you would provide a sacrifice for you. Even Jesus Christ said that all sin is worthy of death, but yet not all sin was worthy of an execution according to the law. To understand this covenant, see what Jesus said regarding laboring on the Sabbath day.
JEHOVAH-RA’AH (Jehovah-Rohi): The Lord my shepherd
- Psalm 23:1 NASB A Psalm of David. 1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. 3 He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
- 4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows. 6 Surely goodness and loving-kindness will follow me all the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.
This poem is the definition of Jehova-Ra’ah. Not that the Rod and Staff are not for punishment, but a protection from evil, a comfort to the person. The preparation of table is the feeding of the flock.
Some things to note: Sheep don’t drink from rapid moving water, so the quiet waters would be the reference to the shepherd pulling water from the river to water the sheep. The sheep did nothing. The table is reference to the shepherd feeding the sheep, again the sheep did nothing.
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,” notice it isn’t “as I am lead”, “as I am guided” or “as I am forced”. This is when I wander and head into the valley of the shadow of death, he is with me, to take care of me. This is an important note to understand what happened with Paul when he was put on trial again and again, but I will have to explain that later.
JEHOVAH-SHAM (Jahovah-Shammah): “The Lord who is present”
- Ezekiel 48:35 NASB “The city shall be 18,000 cubits round about; and the name of the city from that day shall be, ‘The LORD is there.’”
Like much of the scriptures, God has created ways for people to remember that God is with them always. Moses was warned that he couldn’t see the face of God, so God showed him His back side, which was a metaphor for the evidence of God. This too is a symbol of the evidence of God. Note that I said that this is a symbol of that evidence, not the evidence itself. Are there those that God leads through dangerous places? Yes, but he always provides when he does. If he didn’t provide, then obviously you were following your own will and not God’s.
JEHOVAH-RAPHA: The Lord our healer
- Exodus 15:26 NASB 22 Then Moses led Israel from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness and found no water. 23 When they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter; therefore it was named Marah. 24 So the people grumbled at Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” 25 Then he cried out to the LORD, and the LORD showed him a tree; and he threw it into the waters, and the waters became sweet. There He made for them a statute and regulation, and there He tested them. 26 And He said, “If you will give earnest heed to the voice of the LORD your God, and do what is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments, and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have put on the Egyptians; for I, the LORD, am your healer.”
This verse confuses many people, does God plague people or heal them. Well, let’s look at the section that is confusing. “I will put none of the diseases on which I have put on the Egyptians” comes to
“shamar kol choq suwm kol lo’machaleh’asher suwm” Masoretic Text. This also translates to “Guard, and have charge of the whole doctrine, to establish no sickness which was set on the Egyptians”. There is no “I” in there. Men have done a great disservice to their translation by pushing the evil God image of the plaque spreader.
God is not the spreader of plagues, but when someone walks outside of the boundaries that He established, then they are subjected to the punishment that is due their sin. The Egyptians walked and ran well outside of those bounds, and they received the punishment for their transgressions. It is the same as if it was raining and I was holding an umbrella, as long as you walk with me, you are dry, otherwise you get soaked. Sin is none other than that you walked out of the bounds that God had established. However, just as you walked out of those bounds, you can walk back in. If you are still confused, then take a look at this article1, it compares Job to David.
JEHOVAH-TSEDEQ (Jehovah-Tsidkenu): “The Lord our righteousness”
- Jeremiah 23:6 NASB 5 “Behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD, “When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; And He will reign as king and act wisely And do justice and righteousness in the land. 6 “In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell securely; And this is His name by which He will be called, ‘The LORD our righteousness.’
Note that this is Jehovah, OUR righteousness. Since man is an unreliable beast that seems to be hell-bent on sinning, God had to provide another way. That other way is His righteousness that He gave to us to become our righteousness.
JEHOVAH-RA’AH (Jehovah-Jireh): “The Lord will provide”
- Genesis 22:13-14 NASB 13 Then Abraham raised his eyes and looked, and behold, behind him a ram caught in the thicket by his horns; and Abraham went and took the ram and offered him up for a burnt offering in the place of his son. 14 Abraham called the name of that place The LORD Will Provide, as it is said to this day, “In the mount of the LORD it will be provided.”
Part of the first presentation of Ra’ah was as a shepherd, now we see Him as the direct provider, still using Ra’ah.
JEHOVAH-NEC (Jahovah-Nissi): “The Lord our banner”
- Exodus 17:15 NASB 14 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Write this in a book as a memorial and recite it to Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven.” 15 Moses built an altar and named it The LORD is My Banner; 16 and he said, “The LORD has sworn; the LORD will have war against Amalek from generation to generation.”
Amalek had been at war with God’s people, God decided that He was going to be at war with Amalek. If God’s people stayed under God’s umbrella, then they wouldn’t need to take up the sword against
Amalek’s people, but when we stop, we take up the habitually sword. However, even when we walk in the valley of the shadow of death, He is still with us.
Some people say that the Arabian people are from Amalek’s bloodline, which is why they claim we are still at war with them. I don’t find this fully credible, in that over thousands of years the intermingling with other cultures over Europe, Asia-minor, and Africa, these people could be your very neighbor, and look just like you, and you wouldn’t know it. So it is better to assume that they are gone, then to assume that a war blood tribe like that is still around. Or if you do assume that they are here, just look at the government officials, and the police state of your country, and you will see the modern Amalekites.
Our solution is to preach liberty, and as a Christian, liberty in Christ. The time for war has past, the time for peace is here.
JEHOVAH-SHALOWM (Jehovah-Shalom): “The Lord is peace”
- Judges 6:24 NASB 23 The LORD said to him, “Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die.” 24 Then Gideon built an altar there to the LORD and named it The LORD is Peace. To this day it is still in Ophrah of the Abiezrites.
JEHOVAH-SABBAOTH: “The Lord of Hosts”
- Isaiah 6:1-3 NASB 1 In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple. 2 Seraphim stood above Him, each having six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one called out to another and said, “Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD of hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory.”
The symbolism here is incredible, there are 6 seraphim, with 6 wings. Six is used as the number of man throughout the bible. The number 2 is used to mean established, so that there were two flying seraphim, two used to cover his face, and two used to cover his feet. This was an established image of the coming Christ that had been promised since the first covenant.
SHALAM-GEMUWL (Jehovah-Gmolah): “The God of Recompense”
- Jeremiah 51:6 NASB 5 For neither Israel nor Judah has been forsaken By his God, the LORD of hosts, Although their land is full of guilt Before the Holy One of Israel. 6 Flee from the midst of Babylon, And each of you save his life! Do not be destroyed in her punishment, For this is the LORD’S time of vengeance; He is going to render recompense to her. 7 Babylon has been a golden cup in the hand of the LORD, Intoxicating all the earth. The nations have drunk of her wine; Therefore the nations are going mad. 8 Suddenly Babylon has fallen and been broken; Wail over her! Bring balm for her pain; Perhaps she may be healed. 9 We applied healing to Babylon, but she was not healed; Forsake her and let us each go to his own country, For her judgment has reached to heaven And towers up to the very skies. 10 The LORD has brought about our vindication; Come and let us recount in Zion The work of the LORD our God!
Babylon started as a crossroads, a trade center as it were. It grew under the protection of the Lord, but as all things that leave the protection of the Lord, it and the people within walked outside of the
protection of God. So he withdrew his protection. The people tried to restore Babylon again and again, but it was still poisoned by those thoughts and actions that kept it outside of God’s protection.
Just like the nations of today, we can try to save them, or we can forsake them, and let them die as bad fruit, not worthy of the harvest. People are worth saving, nations are already abominations against God as we have seen earlier, so why save a nation?
‘ELYOWN- ‘ELYOWN (El-Elyon): “The most high God”
- Genesis 14:17-20 NASB 17 Then after his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). 18 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; now he was a priest of God Most High. 19 He blessed him and said, “Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth; 20 And blessed be God Most High, Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.”
- Isaiah 14:13-14 NASB 13 “But you said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God, And I will sit on the mount of assembly In the recesses of the north. 14 ‘I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.’
Chapter 14 is the revelation of the thoughts of Lucifer, as he is discovered to plot and act against God. Make no mistake, Lucifer was an angel of God, meaning that he was created by God to serve man. Once he betrayed God, he is no-longer Lucifer, but the Devil, the Serpent, the enemy. All those who welcome in this enemy are by definition enemies of God. He holds many names, including the prince of the powers of the air (meaning the prince of lies. A lie is just hot air spoken from a liar.). Remember Ephesians 6:12 NASB, For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. These rulers are the liars, the powers are the lies, the world of darkness are the thoughts that are against the knowledge of God, the spiritual forces are the forces of the fallen Lucifer.
‘EL-RO’IY-RA’AH (EL-ROI): “The strong one who sees”
- Genesis 16:13 NASB 13 Then she called the name of the LORD who spoke to her, “You are a God who sees”; for she said, “Have I even remained alive here after seeing Him?” 14 Therefore the well was called Beer-lahai-roi; behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered.
The Strong One Who Sees could easily be called, The Strong One Who Sees All. Had Hagar not returned to Sarai, she probably would have been lost in the wild. However, she didn’t just return, but returned with a blessing that her descendants would be massive.
‘EL-SHADDAY (El-Shaddai): “God Almighty”
- Genesis 17:1 NASB Now when Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; Walk before Me, and be blameless.
Abraham stood before God blameless. That word blameless is interesting in that it represents being whole, healthy, sound, and innocent. In the New Testament, we would call this righteous.
- Psalm 91:1 NASB 1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust!” 3 For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper and from the deadly pestilence. 4 He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.
Almighty here is ‘elyown ’elyown Shadday meaning The Almighty Most High.
‘OWLAM-‘ELOHIYM (El-Olam): “The everlasting God”
- Isaiah 40:28-31 NASB 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired. His understanding is inscrutable. 29 He gives strength to the weary, And to him who lacks might He increases power. 30 Though youths grow weary and tired, And vigorous young men stumble badly, 31 Yet those -who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.
This is the definition of what everlasting God means. God does not become weary, or tired. He understands all. He provides strength to all. Men who rely on their own strength will fall weak, but men who rely on God’s strength can run miles.
This is a reliance on drive and motivation. Sometimes you just have to have a motivation well beyond what is in between your own two ears. Do not be afraid to ask God for the inspiration to keep going.
What I didn’t cover, and why
All names in the New Testament, and a bunch of terms that people try to shy from. Vengeance, Justice, Righteousness, One whose thoughts are above ours, forgiving God, and others. Why? I could fill a book of 300+ pages with them, and still find more.
The point of this is that to know God is to either experience God’s works, or if you are not ready to step out on that limb, at least if you are going to claim God to be yours, know who he is, and what he claims, so that you can learn to walk by his standard.