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The Hebrew Name for God - Elohim

Hebrew Names of God

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Elohim and Elohei Constructs given in Tanakh

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Introduction

The word Elohim is the plural of El (or possibly of Eloah) and is the first name for God given
in the Tanakh: “In the beginning, God (Elohim) created the heavens and the earth”
(Genesis 1:1):

B'reshit 1:1

The name Elohim is unique to Hebraic thinking: it occurs only in Hebrew and in no other ancient Semitic language. The masculine plural ending does not mean “gods” when referring to the true God of Israel, since the name is mainly used with singular verb forms and with adjectives and pronouns in the singular (e.g., see Gen. 1:26). However, considering the Hashalush HaKadosh (Trinity), the form indeed allows for the plurality within the Godhead.

In the traditional Jewish view, Elohim is the Name of God as the Creator and Judge of the universe (Gen 1:1-2:4a).

    “The Holy One, Blessed be He, said to those, You want to know my name? I am called according to my actions. When I judge the creatures I am Elohim, and when I have mercy with My world, I am named YHVH” (Ex R. 3:6). 

In the second creation story (Genesis 2:4b-ff) the Name of God is revealed as the Sacred Name YHVH (from the semitic root that means “to be”) and expresses the idea of God’s closeness to humans. YHVH “breathed into his (Adam’s) nostrils the breath of life” (Genesis 2:7).


Elohim and Elohei Constructs
Elohim is combined with other words to provide additional description about God. These other names or titles for God are sometimes called “construct forms,” indicating that they are “constructed” from the base name (e.g., Elohei) with other designators.

For each name in the list below, I provide the following information:

  1. The Hebrew text for the name
  2. The most common English transliteration (in italics)
  3. A definition for the name, references to the Tanakh, and frequency information
  4. Additional comments, if applicable.



God


elohim



Elohim. [The basic form]
God; gods. The plural form of El, meaning “Strong One.” The Name Elohim occurs 2,570 times in the Tanakh. See Isa. 54:5; Jer. 32:27; Gen. 1:1; Isa. 45:18; Deut. 5:23; etc.




God of -

elohei



Elohei.
God of -; a “construct form” that never appears without a qualifying descriptor.




The Son of God

Ben Elohim



Ben Elohim.
The Son of God (Matt. 16:16; 26:63; Jn. 6:69).




My God

elohai



Elohai.
My God.
Elohim with personal pronoun suffix indicating 1st person singular.




The God of Abraham

Elohei Avraham



Elohei Avraham.
The God of Abraham (Ex. 3:15).




The God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob

God of Abraham, Isaac...



Elohei Avraham elohei Yitschak velohei Ya’akov.
The God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob (Ex. 3:15).




The God of my kindness

elohei-chasdi



Elohei Chasdi.
God of my Kindness (Ps. 59:17).
From chesed, the covenantal faithfulness (of God). See also Psalm 89:29; 144:2.




The God of gods

elohei-haelohim



Elohei Haelohim.
The God of gods (Deut. 10:17; Josh. 22:22; Ps. 136:2).




The God of my strength

elohei-ma'uzzi



Elohei Ma’uzzi.
God of my Strength (2 Sam. 22:33; Ps. 31:5; 43:2).




The God who is near

elohei-mikkarov



Elohei Mikkarov.
God who is near (Jer. 23:23).
This Title for God acknowledges His immanence within all.




The God who is far

el-yeshurun



Elohei Merachok.
God who is far (Jer. 23:23).
This Title for God acknowledges His transcendence above all.




The God of heights

elohei-marom



Elohei Marom.
God of Heights (Micah 6:6).




The God of Justice

elohei-mishpat



Elohei Mishpat.
God of Justice (Isa. 30:18).




The God of Hosts

elohei-tseva'ot



Elohei Tseva’ot.
God of hosts or God of armies (2 Sam. 5:10).




The God of Rock

elohei-tzur



Elohei Tzur.
God of Rock (2 Sam. 22:47).
Rock is poetically used to indicate the strength of God as the ground of all being in the universe.




The Eternal God

elohei-kedem



Elohei Kedem.
God of the beginning; Eternal God (Deut. 33:27).




The God of my praise

elohei-tehillati



Elohei Tehillati.
God of my Praise (Ps. 109:1).
From Tehillah, praise, hymn, or psalm. Tehillim is the book of Psalms in Hebrew.




Our God

eloheynu



Eloheynu.
Our God (Ex. 3:18).
Pronominal form that is common in many Hebrew blessings and prayers.




The God of our fathers

elohei-avotenu



Elohei Avotenu.
The God of our fathers (Deut 26:7; 1 Chron. 12:17).



God our father

elohei-avinu



Elohim Avinu.
God our Father.




God in heaven

elohim-bashamayim



Elohim Bashamayim.
God in heaven (2 Chron 20:6).




The God of truth

elohim-emet



Elohim Emet.
The God of truth (Jer. 10:10).




The God of Nahor

elohei-nachor



Elohei Nachor.
The God of Nahor (Abraham’s brother) (Gen. 31:53).




God the father

elohim-ha-av



Elohim HaAv.
God the Father (Jn. 6:27; 1 Co. 8:6; Gal. 1:1, 3; Eph. 6:23; Phil. 2:11; 1 Thess. 1:1; 2 Tim. 1:2; Tit. 1:4; 1 Pet. 1:2; 2 Pet. 1:17; 2 Jn. 1:3; Jude 1:1).




The Living God

elohim-chaiyim



Elohim Chayim.
The Living God (Deut. 5:26; Jos. 3:10; 1 Sam. 17:26, 36; 2 Ki. 19:4, 16; Ps. 42:2; 84:2; Isa. 37:4, 17; Jer. 10:10; 23:36; Dan. 6:20, 26; Hos. 1:10; Matt. 16:16; 26:63; Jn. 6:69; Acts 14:15; Rom. 9:26; 2 Co. 3:3; 6:16; 1 Tim. 3:15; 4:10; 6:17; Heb. 3:12; 9:14; 10:31; 12:22; Rev. 7:2).




The God of the living

elohei haChayim



Elohei HaChayim.
The God of the Living (Mk. 12:27).




The God of the spirits of all flesh

el-elyon



Elohei haruchot l’chol-basar.
God of the spirits of all flesh (Num. 16:22; 27:16).


The Living God

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