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  • Rick LoPresti

Multiplied majesty

The Hebrew word often translated God in the Old Testament is elohiym. This word takes several forms. In this one the ending indicates it is plural. This has nothing to do with persons in the Godhead. It appears 2,606 times in the Bible. It is translated God 2,346 times. However, it is also applied to idols as gods (with a small g) 244 times and goddess 2 times. It means judge 5 times , great twice, mighty twice, angels once, exceeding once, and godly once. Elohiym is applied to men:

1. Gen 3:5 - Adam and Eve

2. Gen 23:6 - Abraham

3. Ex 7:1 - Moses

4. Ex 22:28 - rulers

5. 1Sam 2:25 - judge

6. 1Sam 28:13 - Samuel

7. Ps 82:6 - the people of God (Jn 10:34-35)

8. Is 41:23 - the idolators of Israel

It is also applied to singular idols numerous times:

1. Generally - Ex 22:20, Deut 32:39, Jud 9:27, 2Chr 32:31, Dan 1:2, Hos 13:4, Amos 2:8, Amos

8:14, Jon 1:5, Mic 4:5

2. Specifically

a. Jud 6:31, 1Ki 18:24-27 - Baal

b. Jud 8:33 - Baalberith

c. Jud 16:23-34, 1Sam 5:7 - Dagon

d. 1Ki 11:5 & 33 - Ashtoreth

e. 1Ki 11:33 - Chemosh and Milcom

f. 2Ki 1:2-6 & 16 - Baalzebub

g. Nisroch - 2Ki 19:37, Is 37:38

This shows that there is no plurality of persons inherent in the meaning of elohiym. So why is this word pluralized, especially as it pertains to God? It is because the majesty of God is so far beyond what we can understand, that it is described as being multiplied:

1. Gen 16:10, Gen 17:2 & 20, Gen 22:17, Gen 26:4, Gen 28:3 - He multiplied the seed of


2. Ex 7:3, Ex 11:9 - His wonders were multiplied in Egypt

3. Hos 12:10 - He multiplied visions

4. Acts 6:1 & 7, Acts 9:31 - His disciples multiplied

5. Acts 12:24 - His word multiplied

6. 2Cor 9:10 -He will multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness

7. 1Pet 1:2, 2Pet 1:2, Jude 2 - His mercy, grace, and peace are multipled

Elohiym is It is plural intensive with singular meaning. This means it is pluralized to intensify its description of God, but still maintains a singular meaning. The wisdom of God is much variegated or multifarious (Eph 3:10), and His grace is various in character, divers, manifold.

God is absolutely one in the nature of His existence. This is clearly expressed throughout the Bible. The word one appears 111 times in the KJV. The word only appears 32 times. The word himself appears 114 times. The word myself appears 33 times. These 4 words appear 290 times. The words I, me, my, mine, he, him, and his could not be counted using Strong’s Concordance because they appear too often to be listed. The words us and our each appear once in the same verse - Gen. 1:26, which even some trinitarians admit cannot be interpreted to mean 3 persons. The word us also appears in Gen 11:7. The word three appears twice in the same verse - 1Jn 5:7, the end of which states “and these three are one”. The words ours, ourselves, they, them, and themselves never appear. The words we and our appear in John 14:23, but are in reference to believers receiving the Holy Ghost, not to persons. The words trinity and persons also never appear. The phrase God the Son does not appear. The word manifest (-ed, -ation) appears 18 times in relation to God. The language of scripture is clearly in favor of an understanding of the nature of the Godhead as absolutely one, and not more than one. A reading of Isaiah chapters 40-50 will find voluminous and very clear language that the Godhead is absolutely one to the exclusion of all other concepts of Him. However, the glory and majesty of God are described as multiplied by the plural form of the word elohiym. Our finite minds cannot fully perceive or understand all that He is. What a great God we have as Creator, Lord, Savior, and Father!

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