Yesterday, the girls and I were window shopping (I was trying to figure out what Ruthie wants for her upcoming birthday) when Ruthie spied something on the bottom shelf of the bargain aisle. She picked up the toy and said, “Oh, my God!” We all froze and I looked at her with what must have been total shock. He hand flew to her mouth and a look of fear spread over her face. Her eyes welled with tears and she said, “Oh, Mommy, what did I say?!”
She didn’t actually know that her expression was disrespectful, but she could tell from my reaction that she had said something I disapproved of. I was so surprised that she knew that phrase–we never say it in our home and I can’t imagine where she heard it amongst our family and friends. I got down to her level and said, “Ruthie, we don’t ever use God’s name like that. God’s name is holy and He deserves our respect and love. When we use God’s name it’s always in a way that shows love.” She hugged me and apologized and said she wanted to apologize to God, too. So, right there in the Dollar General store, we prayed and she said she was sorry.
Later in the day, the girls and I talked about God’s name. I told them that God has many names to show His many different character qualities. We talked about their own names and why we choose them and what they mean. Then they asked me what God’s different names were. I have to admit, I knew some of them but wasn’t entirely sure I was getting their meanings right. So, I told them I would spend time looking them up and we could talk about them today. Here is the list I came up with–not exactly exhaustive in nature, but names I thought they could relate to and possibly remember.
Let’s all learn them together to remember how great our God truly is!
The Names of God
EL Mighty, Strong
El Shaddai God Almighty or God All Sufficient
Adonai Lord or Master
Jehovah “I AM WHO I AM” or the self-existent One
Jehovah-Jireh The Lord Who Provides
Jehovah-Rophe The Lord Who Heals
Jehovah-Nissi The Lord Our Banner (in battle)
Jehovah-M’Kaddesh The Lord Who Sanctifies (makes holy, sets apart)
Jehovah-Shalom The Lord Our Peace (perfect peace)
Jehovah-Elohim LORD God
Jehovah-Tsidkenu The Lord our Righteousness (justice)
Jehovah-Rohi The Lord our Shepherd
Jehovah-Shammah The Lord is there
Jehovah-Sabaoth The Lord of Hosts (commander of army)
El-Elyon Most High
Gaol Redeemer (to buy back paying a price)
El-Olam Everlasting One
El-Gibhor God the Warrior
Zur God our Rock
Okay, that’s 22 names in both Hebrew and English. What a great thing for our children (and us!) to know. God loves it when we pray using His names. And, it helps us to tap into the vast resources of God’s character. Just think, at the same time God is both Jehovah-Shalom and El-Gibhor!
My information was collected from a few great sites:
Thank You, Jehovah, for being Strong and Mighty while at the same time also being Healing and Peace. Help me to know You better. In Jesus’ Holy name, Amen.