frontGENESIS, on Elohim and Yahweh). ELOHIM expresses the might of the Creator and Sustainer of the universe. ELYON, His sublimity, (Genesis 14:22), "the Most High." SHADDAI, the "Almighty," His all sufficiency (Genesis 17:1; Philemon 4:19; 2 Corinthians 3:5; 2 Corinthians 12:9). JEHOVAH, His unchangeable faithfulness to His covenanted promises to His people. ADONAI, His lordship, which being delegated to others as also is His might as ELOHIM, ADONAI and ELOHIM are used occasionally of His creatures, angels and men in authority, judges, etc. (Psalm 8:5; Psalm 97:7 (Hebrew); Psalm 82:1; Psalm 82:6-7.) "Lord" in small letters stands for Hebrew ADONAI in KJV, but in capitals ("LORD") for JEHOVAH. ELYON, SHADDAI, and JEHOVAH are never used but of GOD; Jehovah the personal God of the Jews, and of the church in particular.
ELOAH, the singular, is used only in poetry. The derivation is 'aalah "to fear," as Genesis 31:42; Genesis 31:53, "the fear of Isaac," or 'aalah "to be mighty." The plural ELOHIM: is the common form in prose and poetry, expressing that He combines in Himself all the fullness of divine perfections in their manifold powers and operations; these the heathen divided among a variety of gods. ELOHIM concentrates all the divine attributes assigned to the idols severally, and, besides those, others which corrupt man never of himself imagined, infinite love, goodness, justice, wisdom, creative power, inexhaustible riches of excellence; unity, self existence, grace, and providence are especially dwelt on, Exodus 3:13-15; Exodus 15:11; Exodus 34:6-7. The plural form hints at the plurality of Persons, the singular verb implies the unity of Godhead.
The personal acts attributed to the Son (John 1:3; Psalm 33:6; Proverbs 8:22-32; Proverbs 30:4; Malachi 3:1, the Lord the Sender being distinct from the Lord the Sent who "suddenly comes") and to the Holy Spirit respectively (Genesis 1:2; Psalm 104:30) prove the distinctness of the Persons. The thrice repeated "LORD" (Numbers 6:25-27) and "Holy" (Isaiah 6:3) imply the same. But reserve was maintained while the tendency to polytheism prevailed, and as yet the redeeming and sanctifying work of the Son and the blessed Spirit was unaccomplished; when once these had been manifested the doctrine of the Trinity in Unity was fully revealed in New Testament.
The sanctions of the law are temporal rather than spiritual, because a specimen was to be given in Israel of God's present moral government. So long as they obeyed, Providence engaged national prosperity; dependent not on political rules or military spirit, as in worldly nations, but on religious faithfulness. Their sabbatical year, in which they neither tilled nor gathered, is a sample of the continued interposition of a special providence. No legislator without a real call from God would have promulgated a code which leans on the sanction of immediate and temporal divine interpositions, besides the spiritual sanctions and future retributions.
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