Bible Study Resources - Tips, Online Bible Search, Devotions

10 Names of God and What They Mean

  • Allyson Holland Crosswalk.com Contributing Writer
10 Names of God and What They Mean

“O LORD, our Lord, How majestic is Your name in all the earth!” (Psalm 8:9)

“And those who know Your name will put their trust in you.” (Psalm 9:10)

How well do you know God? His character? His heart? 

It’s not enough to know about God. It’s through His biblical names that you can become intimately acquainted with Him. When you understand the meanings of God’s names then you will understand His character and His heart. He wants you to know Him. He wants to be in close personal relationship with you. 

Here are 10 names of God and their meanings: 

Photo courtesy: Unsplash.com

1. Names of God: Elohim

1. Names of God: Elohim

God is Elohim—He is your Creator.

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1)

Have you given much thought to the power God used to create the universe? How about God’s insanely creative imagination as He designed planet earth? 

My favorite vacation is visiting gardens throughout England. The majesty of the Cedars of Lebanon and the beauty and variety of the flowers is breathtaking. Whether it’s hiking in the mountains, enjoying some time at the beach, or taking a leisurely walk through the woods, there’s no denying that nature is one way to connect with Elohim.     

“So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” (Genesis 1:27)

What about the intricacies and beauty of the human body? 

Do you ever feel worthless? Unlovable? You are supremely valuable for one primary reason. You have been created in the image of God. He loves and cherishes you more than you can fathom because you are His image bearer.  

“I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made…” (Psalm 139:14a)

Photo courtesy: Unsplash.com

2. Names of God: Elohim Chayim

2. Names of God: Elohim Chayim

God is Elohim Chayim—He is the Living God. 

“Today you will know that the living God is among you.” (Joshua 3:10)

“Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles.” (1 Corinthians 15:3-7)

There is not one religion that exists other than Christianity that can boast of having a god that is alive and active in the lives of its followers. Every faith founder that once walked the earth is dead and gone. Every stone or wooden god that was worshiped never took a breath of air. You can only have a personal relationship with the living God—Elohim Chayim.

“Then the angel spoke to the women, Don’t be afraid! He said. I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen.” (Matthew 28:5-6)  

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/RomoloTavani

3. Names of God: Abba

3. Names of God: Abba

God is Abba—He is your Father.

“So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15)

We adopted a baby girl from China 17 years ago. We are her forever family. She identifies herself as a Holland child. Our friends can tell from her mannerisms that she is part of the Holland family.  

When you place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, God adopts you into His forever family. You bear His name—Christian. And you are known as one of His children by your behavior. How wonderful to be able to call God such an intimate name—Abba.      

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/LincolnRogers

4. Names of God: Jehovah-jireh

4. Names of God: Jehovah-jireh

God is Jehovah-jireh—the Lord will provide.

“When they arrived at the place where God had told him to go, Abraham built an altar and arranged the wood on it. Then he tied his son, Isaac, and laid him on the altar on top of the wood. And Abraham picked up the knife to kill his son as a sacrifice. At that moment the angel of the LORD called to him from heaven…Don’t lay a hand on the boy! Then Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught by its horns in a thicket. So he took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering in place of his son. Abraham named the place Jehovah-jireh (which means the LORD will provide). To this day, people still use that name as a proverb: On the mountain of the lord it will be provided.” (Genesis 22:9-12; 13-14)

The drama and significance of this event in Abraham’s life was a test to prove his faithfulness to God and God’s faithfulness to Abraham. He wanted to see if Abraham would trust Him with the promise He had fulfilled for him in giving him a son in his old age. Abraham passed the test and the ram proved that God is Jehovah-jireh.

Just a short distance from where God provided a ram in Isaac’s place, He provided the ultimate sacrifice in our place, the Lamb of God, Jesus, who took away the sins of the whole world.

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/EwaPix

5. Names of God: Jehovah-shalom

5. Names of God: Jehovah-shalom

God is Jehovah-shalom—the Lord is Peace. 

“When Gideon saw he was the angel of the Lord, he said, ‘Alas, O Lord GOD! For now I have seen the angel face to face. The Lord said to him, Peace to you, do not fear; you shall not die. Then Gideon built an altar there to the LORD and named it The LORD is Peace.” (Judges 6:22-24

There is a peace that only God can give. It is a peace that the world cannot understand. When in the midst of tests and trials the peace of God that passes all understanding can overwhelm us and bring us to a place of great comfort. Only a serious Christ-follower can truly understand the mystery of the workings of the Holy Spirit in this way. This is a peace that the world can’t understand, a peace that only Jehovah-shalom can give.

Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/GordonImages

6. Names of God: El Elyon

6. Names of God: El Elyon

God is El Elyon—He is your Sovereign.

I’m living with a rare and incurable disease. I’m often asked, “How do you do it? How come you don’t ask God why?” My first answer is always, “Because I believe in His Sovereignty. He’s in control of my life and He has the right as God Almighty to do with my life as He pleases.” Secondly, I say, “All the years I was healthy I worked on building a solid spiritual foundation with the Lord. I trust Him implicitly. I believe that His Word is true.” El Elyon is Sovereign over my life and I’m grateful.

Photo courtesy: Unsplash.com

7. Names of God: El Kanna

7. Names of God: El Kanna

God is El Kanna—The Jealous God. 

“You must worship no other gods, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a God who is jealous about his relationship with you.” (Exodus 34:14)

How is Christianity different than any other pagan religion? God is in relentless pursuit of you. He wants nothing to take His place in your life or in your heart. Idolatry runs rampart in hearts today, anything from material possessions to personal relationships. If Satan can distract you from what is most important—an intimate relationship with God—then he thinks he can win the battle to be lord in your life. So beware of what you spend your time on, what consumes your thinking, and what your hobbies and habits are. 

“For, I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods.” (Exodus 20:5

El Kanna’s affection for you runs deep. 

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/NiseriN

8. Names of God: El Roi

8. Names of God: El Roi

God is El Roi—He sees you. 

“Thereafter, Hagar used another name to refer to the LORD, who had spoken to her. She said, You are the God who sees me. She also said, have I truly seen the One who sees me?” (Genesis 16:13

Have you felt like God has forgotten you? Do you feel like you’re wading through the muck and mire of life and nobody even knows or cares? 

Hagar probably experienced similar feelings. Unloved as a servant she became pregnant by her master and then mistreated by her mistress. She finally ran away only to be found by an angel of the LORD who was no doubt eager to tell her that God had heard her cry of distress (Genesis 16). 

El Roi sees you and He cares. 

Photo courtesy: Unsplash.com

9. Names of God: Jehovah Ro'i

9. Names of God: Jehovah Ro'i

God is Jehovah Ro’i—He is your Shepherd. 

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.” (Psalm 23:1)

The English countryside is breathtaking. The green pastures and grazing sheep are picturesque. It’s easy to imagine what it must have been like to walk the earth while shepherds watched their flocks at night. Sheep without a shepherd quickly go astray.

They may even lose their way. 

What about you? 

Do you find yourself feeling alone? Like you’re wandering around in life with no guidance or direction, kind of like a sheep without a shepherd? Well, Jesus is your good shepherd and He is always with you and always watching over you. And even when you don’t think you can continue to go on in your own strength, He is there to carry you through when you need Him most. He is your Jehovah Ro’i.

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock

10. Names of God: Jehovah Nissi

10. Names of God: Jehovah Nissi

God is Jehovah Nissi—He is my banner.

“Moses built an altar there and named it Yahweh-nissi (which means ‘the LORD is my banner’).

“Banners were not foreign to the people of Israel and were often attached to bare poles or standards. The banner represented deliverance and salvation. When Moses held up his hands, the people of Israel relied on God for their assurance and their victory. Though God is called Yahweh Nissi only once in the Bible, His work is seen throughout Scripture. We learn that the Lord will fight for us, the battle is His, and He is a God of deliverances.” (Catherine Martin/Trusting in the Names of God, p.180-181)

Are you in a desperate situation in your life? Are you struggling and can’t seem to break free from what is holding you back? Call on Jehovah-nissi and He will watch over you and cover you and protect you. 

Allyson Holland is a lifestyle blogger. (allysonholland.com/blog) Ally suffers from RSD/CRPS. She is passionate about God’s redemptive work in the lives of those who suffer from physical and emotional pain. Ally has been married to John for 30 years and they have five children. John and Ally serve as marriage leaders in the ministry Re-Engage (marriagehelp.org) at Watermark Church, Dallas, TX. Ally writes for Publishous/PublishousNow.com. She has been a guest author for Bible.org. She is a former Director of Ministry to Women and former board member for Thrive Ministry (Thriveministry.org). You can connect with Ally on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.   

Photo courtesy: ©Thinkstock/RomoloTavani

 


This article is part of our Names of God Series featuring the most used names and titles of God found in the Bible. We have compiled these articles to help you study all that God says He is and to help you understand His nature and character. Our hope is that you would focus on these truths and find hope as you rest in the promise of God’s presence, no matter the circumstances.

7 Meanings of Yahweh - God's Name in the Bible
Son of Man - Jesus’s Favorite Name for Himself
Meaning of Elohim in the Bible
Abba Father - What it Means and Why it’s Important
What Does it Mean that Jesus is the Lamb of God?
God is the Alpha and Omega - Meaning & Understanding
The Meaning of Hosanna - Powerful Name of Jesus from the Bible
Jehovah Jireh: “The Lord Will Provide” Name of God
Jehovah Nissi: "The Lord is My Banner" Name of God
What Does Yeshua Mean? BIblical Name for Jesus




Follow Crosswalk.com