Next Stop on the Trust Exploration Train
Good morning! Or afternoon, or evening, or whatever greeting is appropriate for you when you read this… Welcome back on the Trust Exploration Train. Today, I am exploring Why I Can Trust God.
First, let me lay out the basic path for today’s post. I am going to explore a very few scriptures that reveal SOME of the names of God. That will by NO means be comprehensive but will show you the ones which mean so much to me personally. If there is time, I will share how God has revealed Himself to me by living up to His names.
You see, the Names of God reveal the Character of God. And God will be true to His Character.
So back to Webster’s Dictionary for the definition of character: one of the attributes or features that make up and distinguish an individual; main or essential nature especially as strongly marked and serving to distinguish.
An aside: Is it just me, or do you find it funny that I access a dictionary – a man made book – to begin a discussion about God? Maybe it’s just my little quirky sense of humor… But the reality is that we need a common starting place, and we need a clear understanding of how a word is being used. English words can have so many different meanings and uses… That is one of the challenges of our language!
Taking apart the definition …
Who would dare to take apart the Webster’s definition? I mean, really? Webster’s is like the Bible when it comes to language. It is our “go to” when it comes to English… Unlike the Bible, Webster’s Dictionary can change. New words will be added. New definitions emerge based on cultural reference.
But let’s look a two key words in the definition of character which stands as the premise for our discussion today. These key words are ESSSENTIAL NATURE. By definition, God’s character is His essential nature. It is what makes Him who He is. It is necessary (essential) and unchanging (nature).
The root word for essential is essence which refers to “the invariable nature of a thing.” Http://Thesarus.com We use the phrase “in essence” to summarize. We talk about the “essence” of a scent. Today we will “distill” a bit of scripture to see some of God’s essence … Some of His invariable nature… A lifetime of study could not reveal all of who He is to us. But the Psalmist challenges us to “taste, and see that the Lord is good.” (Psalm 34:8) So today, we will just get a “taste” of who He is.
Names of God: Just who is He?
EL, Elohim: the strong one, the God above all gods. This is first name used for God in the scriptures and appears 2570 times. Think this important? Yes it is! It establishes God as the most powerful, only true God. Http://www.bible.org
EL is used as the introduction to the various names of God. For example EL Shaddai means God Almighty. EL Elyon is “the most high God.” EL Roi: the God who sees; EL Olam: the everlasting God.
On and on it goes, as the words in the scripture reveal God’s nature to us.
Of course, our translations of the Bible do not use the Hebrew words. We may read Lord, Lord God Almighty, the Holy One, the Lord who is my strength. Or we may see Him described as a Rock, our Salvation, our shield and defender, the ancient of days.
Why is it important to know who God is? Because when we know who He is and how He has revealed himself in times past, we can TRUST that He remains the same. He is the Eternal God.
One of my Favorite Verses is Deuteronomy 33:27: “The eternal God is your Refuge. And underneath are the everlasting arms.” I first heard this scripture when I happened upon a radio program by Elizabeth Elliot, wife of missionary Jim Elliott who was killed on the mission field. If you have not read the story, you should… This is her theme verse for the program. And I love the picture.
Not only is God my refuge, where I can go when I need to hide, but His Everlasting Arms are there to catch me when I fall. I picture myself falling of a cliff and God catching me in His arms. And while I haven’t done that literally, I certainly feel like I have at times in my life. Who hasn’t? I can testify that He has always been there to catch me.
He is my rock, my refuge and my strength. He is all knowing, all present, all wise. He loves me with an everlasting love. His mercy and grace extend to all who will accept it.
I cannot exhaust who God is or what He means to me, but I can refer you back to His word to explore His character further. God will reveal Himself to you as you draw near to Him.
He is true to His word. He is TRUSTworthy.
Seek him, find Him, and follow him. You can’t go wrong …