Seven Prime Names: 4. El Eloah (אל אלוה)
As we continue our series looking at the names of God and seeking, through them, to draw closer to God, it is striking how many reveal His power: a power that is manifest in love for us and proactive action to protect and save us; not in desolation and disdain.
Eloah means God (the singular, or dual form of Elohim). It is sometimes written as El Eloah (literal translation would be God God), this combination emphasises God as powerful, strong, and mighty with compassion and integrity. This is well illustrated in Job – indeed El Eloah appears more often in Job than anywhere else in the Bible.
Blessing Comes When God Corrects You
“Blessed is the person whom Eloah corrects. That person should not despise discipline from the LORD. (Job 5:17)
It may not surprise to learn that El Eloah is the poetic form. We will look at another form, Elohim, next time, but for now let us spend some time in Job 5:17. A person is being ‘corrected’ – God loves us so much that He accepts us as we are, but does not leave us as we are. In being corrected, we are realigned with God’s holiness, His majesty. And this is where we are surely blessed: that we … WE … would receive this extravagant grace from the LORD! How often we push back when disciplined by others, but when we are disciplined and corrected by God in all His powerful, mighty, compassionate integrity, we should not reject and hate that discipline.
And think, also, about the way we receive discipline and correction from God – it can be powerful, really catching us, enabling us to turn right round (in other words, to repent). It can be mighty: an act or effect on us that overcomes our innate tendencies to insist that we are right and refuse to hear, see or acknowledge. This correction can be subtle, but it is revealed prominently when we simply acknowledge the difference in our lives that God makes, if only we choose to obey and choose to see. And yet it is compassionate – a constant love for us that is moved to act: a compassion that led Jesus to heal great numbers of sick (Matthew 14:14); a compassion that took Jesus to the cross to die in our place. It is an integrity that is mighty in its expression: that justice is required because evil must be dealt with, sin must be paid for.
But we circle straight back to the power to do something about that, the might to bring about an eternal plan, the integrity to insist on justice and the compassion to put it into action.
This has described the correction given out by God, but it describes God Himself – mighty, strong, prominent and filled with integrity and compassion.
It is no wonder El Eloah is the poetic form – so much depth and character in a single name whilst, in the English language, we simply talk about ‘God’! But when we say the name ‘God,’ let it hold all that meaning for us – power, integrity and compassion; let it be a precious name for our Precious Lord.
Who is El Eloah but the LORD? Who is a rock except our Creator? (Psalm 18:31)
[from Timothy Pitt]