The Holy Bible—the timeless Word of God—is filled with what I like to call “Ah-ha! Moments;” moments that catch us by surprise. Moments when the Holy Spirit stirs something inside and…somehow…miraculously…the brain and the spirit come together deep in our hearts and says, “Did you see that? Did you catch it? This is an ah-ha moment.”

 

I love ah-ha moments. I expect them literally every time I read from the Word. You see, God is not like man when it comes to what He says. Or, I should say, not like me. He doesn’t waste His words. So every book, every chapter, every verse, every word of His Word has been spoken and then written for a purpose.

 

Would you like to explore one of those ah-ha moments with me now?

 

Genesis 1:1

 

In the beginning God…

 

“Knowing the name of a man,” I heard someone say recently, “is knowing the essence of that person.”

 

It is the same with God. His name, or names, are vital to who He is at any given moment. As Moses—a man with whom God spoke as a man speaks to his friend[i]--began penning the creation story, he introduces God as “Elohim” (pronounced el-o-heem’).

 

In the beginning Elohim

 

Elohim (sometimes written Elohiym) is a name for God used 2, 250 times (second only to Yahweh/Jehovah, which appears 6,828 times) in the Old Testament. In the New Testament it is written as “Theos.” It is used to show identity as well as identification (sort of like saying, “Dr. Everson”). In the book of Psalms it is used nearly 700 times.

 

Elohim is a plural intensive word with a singular meaning. A word which is plural intensive has “the plural ending but the verbs and adjectives that accompany it are singular…[it] denotes a singular object or individual but adds a connotation of greatness.[ii]” Does this mean that Elohim is many gods? No. Rather, the name Elohim gives our first peek into the Trinity of God.

 

 

In this first half of the first sentence of the Bible, and in this one name, we see the move and work of more than a singular god.

 

Getting to the Root of it

 

The root word for Elohim is “El,” which means “power…God in the widest sense. God in a father figure[iii].” In His name—Elohim—is the fullness of His power.