5 Names of God

And What They Reveal About His Character

How many names do you think God has? We hear “God”, “Lord”, “Heavenly Father”, “Jesus”, and “Holy Spirit” frequently in English, so there’s five. Did you know that the Bible uses over 900 different names to refer to God? Wowza!

Names of God and what they reveal about His character.

If you had all day to list as many names of God as you could think of without using the Bible or other resources, how many could you come up with? I would not get anywhere near 900. I know that!

If you had all day to list as many names of God as you could think of without using the Bible or other resources, how many could you come up with? I would not get anywhere near 900. I know that!

So who cares? What’s wrong with just sticking to our top 5 and keeping it simple? 

It’s important to learn the various names of God and their meanings because God reveals His nature and character to us through His names. It is impossible for one name (or even 900!) to capture the fullness of who God is and how He interacts with us.

As we continue to unpack the Lord’s Prayer, we have come to “Hallowed is your name”. It is here that we praise God’s name, the name that is above every other name.

I picked 5 names of God that may be new to you. Some of these are often used with other words as part of a compound name of God, so understanding these first will help you grasp the others easier.

So let’s dig in! (There’s a goodie for you at the bottom of this post!)

EL

might, strength, and power; a general word for “god”

When “EL” is used to refer to the one true God of Israel in the OT, it is almost always modified with additional words that distinguish Him from false gods. Such as, El Echad, the One God (Mal 2:10)

You are God alone.  There is none like you.  All power belongs to you.

ELOHIM

Creator, Governor of the universe, All-powerful

Gen 1:1 – ”In the beginning God [ELOHIM] created the heavens and the earth.”

Gen 1:26-27 – Let us make men and women in our image. (Plural form indicates the Trinity)

Ps 19:1 – “The Heavens declare the glory of God [ELOHIM].

You alone are the Creator of all that is, was, and ever will be.  By your word all things come into being and by your breath they are sustained or destroyed.

Several names of God and what they mean. Praise His holy name!

YHWH, JEHOVAH

LORD I AM.

unchanging, eternal, self-existent God

self-derived and permanent existence

This personal name for God is very special and significant. It was considered too sacred to even be pronounced aloud. Jehovah is often combined with other words to further define His character

Ex 3:14 – to Moses “I AM who I AM.”

Ps 83:18, KJV – “That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, art the most high over all the earth.”

You always have been and always will be existing uncreated and self-sustaining.  You depend on no one and no thing.  You reveal yourself to your people.

EL SHADDAI

God Almighty, The Mighty One

“el” (might, power) + “shaddai” (breasts/mountains, nourishes, supplies, satisfies) = bountiful sufficiency

God as our EL SHADDAI:

  • pours forth sustenance
  • abundantly supplies and blesses
  • is able to save to the uttermost
  • provides complete provision and spiritual nourishment

Gen 17:1-2 – in reference to multiplying Abraham’s offspring

Gen 49:25 – “because of your father’s God, who helps you, because of the Almighty, who blesses you with blessings of the skies above, blessings of the deep springs below, blessings of the breast and womb.”

Ps 91:1 –  “rest in the shadow of the Almighty [EL SHADDAI]” (Imagery of a mother bird protecting her young. See Ps. 17:8)

Is 60:16 – “You will drink the milk of nations and be nursed at royal breasts. Then you will know that I, the Lord, am your Savior, your Redeemer, the Mighty One [EL SHADDAI] of Jacob.”

Is. 66:11-13 – comforting breasts, drink deeply, delight in overflowing abundance, comforted as a mother comforts her child

You have made both men and women in your image.  I praise you as my heavenly Father and as the One who abundantly nourishes and satisfies my spirit and soul in the deepest places of my being.  Your bountiful all-sufficiency overflows to supply all I need.  You comfort me as a mother does her child. You shield me as a mother bird fiercely protects her young. You are more than enough for me.

ADONAI

Master, Lord

Lk 5:5-Simon Peter called Jesus, “Master” and obeyed despite the temptation to do the opposite.

You are the rightful ruler of my life and all that concerns me.  I submit to you in humble obedience because of your love for me.

“Lord, bid me come to Thee, from any boat, on any water,
only teach me how to walk on the sea.”
~ Amy Carmichael

I have created some more printables for your prayer guide. These pages are to go in your Prayer Journal Notebook just after the “Hallowed be your name” page. Use them in your prayer time to praise God’s holy name.

Holy is Your Name (A printable summary of this post to put in your Prayer Journal)

Lord, I Bless Your Holy Name (A list of several other names of God and their meanings, plus names for the Holy Spirit)

The Powerful Name of Jesus (A page of names for Jesus)

Scripture references follow each name. These pages will give you lots of ammunition for a powerful praise time!

Click here to see all the topics covered in this series.

Download your own prayer guide here.

But wait, there’s more! See all the free printables to add to your prayer guide here.

Were any of these names new to you?
What do you learn about God by studying His names?

Your comments make my day! What you do think about what you just read?