Sermon #1 Series: The Names of God
Title: The Names of the Lord
Text: Psalm 9:10
Date: Sunday Morning—May 10, 1987
Tape #: H-36
Proposition: I have two reasons for preaching to you this morning. First and foremost, I want to exalt, magnify, extol, honor, praise, and glorify the name of the Lord our God. All over the country today, preachers and churches are honoring motherhood. And mothers should be honored, but not in the house of God. In the house of God, we honor Godhood, and nothing else. I have every reason to magnify the name of God before you. With the Psalmist, my heart is resolved. "I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore. For great is thy mercy toward me: and Thou hast delivered my soul from the lowest hell" (Ps. 86:12-13).
God's great mercy toward me compels me to magnify his name alone. As I think of the mercies of the Lord, my heart cries, "not unto man, O Lord, not unto man, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake" (Ps. 115:1). God's mercy toward us is great!
1. Eternal, Covenant Mercy.
2. Immutable, Electing Mercy.
3. Redeeming, Saving Mercy.
4. Preserving, Keeping Mercy.
5. Daily, Providential Mercy.
Truly, his mercies are great! "It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed" (Lam. 3:22). Therefore, "I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make her boast in the Lord: the humble shall hear thereof, and be glad." And I say, to you who know my God, "O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together!"(Ps. 34:1-3).
That is my first motive in preaching this message. I want to exalt and magnify the name of our great God. And, secondly, I want you to trust the Lord. And the surest way I know to persuade you to trust him is simply to tell you who he is. If, by the power and grace of God the Holy Spirit, I can just show you who he is, I am confident that you will trust him. If you knew my God, you would trust him. All who ever knew him trusted him. All who ever knew him loved him. "This is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent" (John 17:3). It is written, "They that know thy name will put their trust in thee" (Ps. 9:10).
No single word in human language is sufficient to serve as a name for our God. Therefore, there are several words by which he is known. It will be instructive and edifying for me to simply give you the names by which God reveals himself in the Holy Scriptures, and tell you what those names mean.
1. The first revelation of God is found in Genesis 1:1--"In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." The name of God given there is "Elohim."
"Elohim" means "to worship." This is the name of our God. He is The Worshipped One. He is the only object of true worship, praise, adoration, and trust. The word "Elohim" is given in the plural, though is refers to One God. The significance is obvious. We worship One God who is three distinct Persons in One glorious Being, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (I John 5:7).
2. Another name of God is "El" or "Eli."
In Genesis 12:7-8 the Lord appeared to Abraham, and made a covenant with him. Abraham built an altar there and called the place "Beth-El," which means "the house of God." This is the word our Lord used, when he cried, "Eli, Eli, lama sa-bach-tha-na?" that is to say, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" (Mt. 27:46). This name, "El", means "strong, or might God." It is expressive of the power of God.
3. Next, God reveals himself under the name "Eliom" in Genesis 14:18-22. (Melchizedes)
"Eliom" means " the most high God." It is expressive of God's supremacy and majesty. Our Lord Jesus is called "the Son of the Highest" (Luke 1:32). Eliom is the high and lofty One who inhabiteth eternity.
4. God also revealed himself to Abraham by the name "Shoddai," which we translate "Almighty" (Gen. 17:1).
"Shaddai" means "God all-sufficient." It expresses more than the power of God alone. It expresses the power and sufficiency of God to bestow his grace and fulfill his promises. El-Shaddai is God able to save, able to do his will, able to shed his blessings upon his people.
5. In I Samuel 1:9-11, we see Hannah calling upon "the Lord of hosts" in her deep distress.
"The Lord of Sabaoth" (James 5:4) is our God. This name is expressive of God's sovereign dominion and power over all his creatures. The Lord of Hosts has his way in the armies of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, what doest thou?
Did we in our own strength confide,
Our striving would be loosing,
Were not the right Man on our side,
The Man of God's own choosing.
Dost ask who that may be?
Christ Jesus, it is He—
Lord Sabaoth His name,
From age to age the same—
And He must win the battle.
6. In Genesis 15:2, Abraham called upon God by the name "Adonai," to give him the promised covenant seed.
"Adonai" means "the Cause," or "the Support." Truly, Adonai is a suitable name for our God. He is the original cause of all things (Rom. 11:36). And our God supports and maintains all things (Heb. 1:3). And he upholds his saints with the right hand of his righteousness (Isa. 41:10).
7. In Exodus 3:13-14, the Lord appeared to Moses as "Ejeh," which means "I Am that I Am."
"Ejeh" refers to the immutability of our god and Savior (Mal. 3:6; Heb. 13:8). With our God there is no variance and no shadow of turning. He is eternally the same. "I Am" is God who changes not.
8. In the New Testament, the word by which our God is most often revealed is "Lord," the Greek word is "Kunios."
"Lord" simply means, God who is sovereign. It refers to God's dominion, power, authority, and right of ownership over all things. This is the word commonly used to describe Christ our Mediator King (Acts 10:36; I Cor. 8:6; Eph. 4:4).
9. And the word translated "God" in the New Testament is "Theos."
"Theos," God, is one who is holy, who sees all things and knows all things, and disposes of all things. God who is light is perfectly holy. He sees all things with perfect clarity. And he disposes of all things as he will.
These nine names of God tell us that God is infinite, eternal, almighty, self-existent, self-sufficient, ineffably glorious and holy. This great God is a God to be feared, worshipped, and obeyed. He is a consuming fire, unapproachably glorious. Let me have nothing to do with this God; "who only hath immortality dwelling in light, which no man can approach unto, whom no man hath seen, nor can see!" I am a frail, fickle man of sinful flesh. Should I ever meet this God, great majestic, glorious, and holy, his sovereign power would consume me more quickly than dried grass is consumed in a blazing furnace.
Is there then no hope for sinners? Is there not a daysman to stand between me and God? Is there not One with holy hands and a pure heart who has never lifted up his soul unto vanity, who can approach God in my stead, and stand before him to plead my cause? Indeed there is! Blessed be God, there is a Substitute, who is himself God! He is constantly revealed under a tenth name of God throughout the Scriptures.
10. God's glorious redemptive name is Jehovah.
The word "Jehovah" means "Savior" or "Deliverer" (Ex. 6:3). God in Christ is God mighty to save! Jehovah, essentially means "to be." And our Lord Jesus Christ declares that he is the One "which is, which was, and which is to come" (Rev. 1:4). He is the eternal God of salvation, redemption, and deliverance.
The Jews had such reverence for this name that they would not allow it to be spoken in common conversation, read aloud, or even written. When the scribes would write the word Jehovah in copying the scriptures, they would bathe themselves before writing it. I would not have us given over to Jewish superstitions. But I do pray that God will give us a true reverence for his name. "This glorious and fearful name, THE LORD THY GOD" (Duet. 28:58) is not to be taken in vain, used in common speech, or spoken with any levity. "Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who taketh his name in vain" (Ex. 20:7). he that sent redemption to his people and commanded his covenant forever is to be reverenced by us. "Holy and reverend is his name" (Ps. 111:9).
Now, let me give you seven names by which the Lord Jesus Christ, our Divine Savior, reveals himself in the Old Testament. I will give them to you very briefly; but I pray that God the Holy Spirit will graciously use what I have to say to inspire your heart to trust him for the glory of his great name.
A. The Lord will Provide.
1. Genesis 22:13-14; God provided a substitute for Isaac on Mount Moriah
B. Message of the Gospel
1. The Lord saw our need
2. The Lord provided a substitute to fill that need.
(Note: Jehovah-Jireh is the constant object of our faith in both salvation and providence.)
A. The Lord will Heal—Exodus 15:26; The Lord made the bitter waters of Marah sweet for the children of Israel.
B. "I am the Lord that healeth thee."
1. Isaiah 53:5 "With his stripes we are healed."
2. Child of God, you will have many bitter waters to drink. Cast the cross of Christ into those bitter waters and they will be both sweet and refreshing to your soul.
A. The Lord our Banner.—Exodus 17:8-15; Moses and the children of Israel fought with the Amalekites and won the victory through the strength of Christ.
B. The Church
1. While we are in the world, we will struggle with sin, Satan, and the world
2. As Moses lifted his rod to defeat the Amalekites, let us lift up the cross of Christ as a banner for the rallying of God's army.
A.The Lord our Peace—Judges 6:22-24; Gideon saw the angel of the Lord and feared that he would die. But "the Lord said unto him, Peace be unto thee; fear not: thou shalt not die."
B.Jesus Christ is our Peace. By the blood of his cross, we have peace with God, peace from God, and the peace of God.
1.The Peace of Reconciliation
2.The Peace of a Purified Conscience
3.The Peace of Confident Faith
A. "The Lord is my Shepard"—Psalms 23:1
B. Christ is our Shepherd. We are his sheep.
1. We are His Property
2. We live by His Provision
3. We are under His Protection.
The Lord our Righteousness—Jeremiah 23:6
1. Redemptive Righteousness
2. Justifying Righteousness
3. Sanctifying Righteousness
The Lord is There, or The Lord is Present—Ezekiel 48:35
1. Find a Believer—The Lord is there!
2. Find a Church—The Lord is there!
3. Find Heaven—The Lord is there!
Jehovah-Jireh—The Lord will Provide.
Jehovah-Rapha—The Lord will Heal.
Jehovah-Nissi—The Lord our Banner.
Jehovah-Shalom—The Lord our Peace.
Jehovah-Ra-ah—The Lord our Shepherd.
Jehovah-Tsidkenee—The Lord our Righteousness.
Jehovah-Shammah—The Lord is Present.
These are the names of our God and Savior, as he was revealed in the Old Testament. He is Jehovah-Jesus, The Lord who will save (Matt. 1:21).
1. Call upon the Name of the Lord, and you shall be saved (Rom. 10:13).
2. The Name of the Lord is a strong tower, run to it for refuge (Pro.18:10).
3. The Name of the Lord is to be spoken with reverence.
4. The Name of the Lord is the Name we publish.
5. Let us magnify the Name of the Lord, our God and Savior.