The Names of God: Elohim

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. (Genesis 1:1-4 KJ2000)

God.  We can’t see him, but we can come to know him.  Men know things primarily through using words to describe perceived reality.  God created the seen world and cosmos by, through, and with his Word.  God said and behold, it was!  The revelation of God’s Word begins at the beginning and continues through all of Scripture.  Through his Word he reveals himself to the patriarchs, Moses, Samuel, David, the prophets, and finally to all mankind in the Word Himself, Jesus Christ.  Two thousand years ago the Word became flesh and dwelt for awhile among men.  That Word was the man Jesus Christ, the firstborn Son of God in the flesh.

But the revelation of God did not begin with the name Jesus.  It began with his first revealed name to man in Genesis 1:1 in the name Elohim which we simply translate as God.  This name Elohim is the only name used to reveal God in all the first chapter of Genesis.  Genesis 1 reveals God who speaks to a formless and void creation, intimating a ruined creation through the disobedience and rebellion of Satan, and brings this void creation into a new creation that is “very good.”

Genesis 1:2 depicts in starkest form man without God.  Here we see that when man lives devoid of God, darkness dwells on the face of the deep, upon the face of his very soul.  Who can describe the deep waters of a man or the drive and despair that compels him ever deeper into sin’s darkness and the hell of his own making?  But, does not the Word say that even if one makes his bed in hell, you, oh God, are there?

Yes, the Spirit of Elohim hovers over the deep, dark waters of man’s soul, inexorably, inexplicably, until somewhere at some appointed time he will say to each soul, “Let there be light!” and there will be light.  Then Elohim will begin to separate the darkness of man’s soul from that light until, finally, the man becomes nothing but light, with no darkness at all.

The first four verses of the Bible thus introduce us briefly to the grandest concepts of creation.  First, God reveals himself as Elohim.  Second, he reveals himself brooding, hovering over the dark soul of man.  Third, he brings light to that darkened soul.  Fourth, he separates the darkness from the light.  In four short verses God takes us from creation to sanctification, being set apart for and to him.

“Let there be light!” Elohim said, and there was light.  And so, we give thanks unto the Father, who has made us fit to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light because we are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness.

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