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1. Introduction

In Fellowship with the Mystery of His Will we found that the Father’s desire, birthed out of His love nature was to have sons and daughters. His plan was always to do this through Jesus Christ. Jesus’ major revelation was that God is Father to His children. The question has been asked has God changed His nature from the Old Testament to the New Testament. The starting point for this valid question needs to start in the Old Testament Revelation of God.


2. Old Testament Revelation of God of Creation – Elohim:

A. Elohim – the first name of God mentioned in the Bible:

In Genesis 1:1 God is singular, not plural.

  • Although it is the plural of God, the word created is singular, so it is God as one

In the beginning Elohim created the heavens and the earth.

Genesis 1:1
  • It is tempting to say that Elohim shows the trinity in Genesis 1:1, but this is not  completely correct. It could be translated either way – One God, or gods. 
  • However the Trinity is seen in the first three verses. 
B. The spirit of God is found hovering over the waters in Genesis 1:2

The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

Genesis 1:2
C. The Word of God;
  • Before He was called Jesus he was the Word, 

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
He was in the beginning with God

John 1:1

 

has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds;

Hebrews 1:2
  • The Word spoke:

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

Genesis 1:3

 

3. Old Testament Revelation of God of Creation – Yahweh: 

A. Elohim God was also called Yahweh (or Jehovah) when He created the heavens and the earth;

Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said:
“Who is this who darkens counsel
By words without knowledge?
Now prepare yourself like a man;
I will question you, and you shall answer Me.
“Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding.

Job 38:1-4

 

4. God is inside of His Creation:

After God created the heavens and the earth, He entered creation by His Spirit.

  • Elohim’s Spirit was on earth before time started in verse 3:

The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.

Genesis 1:2

 

5. God’s First Interaction with Man, was both as Yahweh AND Elohim (Lord God):

A. When God created man in His image, it was as Elohim in Genesis 1.
  • Man’s physical body was in the image of God;

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.

Genesis 1:27

B. When He created man and blew life into him it was as Yahweh in Genesis 2:

And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.

Genesis 2:7

There is significance in this. Yahweh or Jehovah means Pre-Existing One. We were always meant to have eternal life before Adam and Eve sinned and sin entered the world.


C. When God spoke with Adam it was as Yahweh:

And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat;
but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.”

Genesis 2:16-17

D. Elohim and Yahweh are one and the same, the names reflect different aspects of who He is.

 

6. The Meaning of the Name Yahweh:

A. The first time that Yahweh defines who He is to Moses:

Then Moses said to God, “Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?”
And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ”

Exodus 3:13-14

B. What does He mean by “I am who I say I am”?

He is saying that “I define myself to you as I decide to reveal myself to you”. We will see over this series that there are many ways God has revealed Himself to us. However, primarily, He has decided to reveal Himself through the person of Jesus.

who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person…

Hebrews 1:3

 

Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?

John 14:9

We will look at this some more when we look at the attributes of Yahweh.

 

7. Old Testament Revelation of Yahweh is a Relational God:

A. He enjoyed Adam and Eve’s company, so much that He walked in the garden with them;

And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden.

Genesis 3:8

If they heard the sound of God walking in the forest and they were ashamed, then this was not the first time that they had heard God walking in the garden. We also see that He talked with them.


B. Enoch walked with God, then God took him!

And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

Genesis 5:24

Some have commented that God enjoyed Enoch so much, one day Enoch walked straight into heaven, as there is no record of him dying.

 

8. Old Testament Revelation of Yahweh is a Covenant-Keeping God:

A. He Wants to Enter into Covenant with Man:

We have seen that God enjoys His relationship with man, but He does not just want to be friends with man, He also wants to enter into covenant with man. This is a bit like saying that a man and woman are great friends, so much that they decide to enter into a covenant together – marriage.


B. God’s Covenant with Abraham:

The first person God enters into a covenant with as Yahweh (Adam and Noah were as Elohim) is Abraham;

After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward.”
But Abram said, “Lord GOD, what will You give me, seeing I go childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?”
Then Abram said, “Look, You have given me no offspring; indeed one born in my house is my heir!”
And behold, the word of the LORD came to him, saying, “This one shall not be your heir, but one who will come from your own body shall be your heir.”
Then He brought him outside and said, “Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.”
And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.

Genesis 15:1-6

 

C. God makes covenants two-directional:

As soon as God enters into a covenant with Man, we learn that God makes covenants two directional. It is not that God enters into a covenant with you and you do what God says without questioning.

It is a two-way relationship-based binding agreement, where God will listen to us. We see this truth when we look at Abraham’s covenant, where Abraham negotiates the coming judgment on Sodom and Gomorrah with God.

And Abraham came near and said, “Would You also destroy the righteous with the wicked?
Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it?
Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?”

Genesis 18:23-25

Then he said, “Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak but once more: Suppose ten should be found there?”
And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.”
So the LORD went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham; and Abraham returned to his place.

Genesis 18:32-33

D. God can change His mind because He is relational

We see a similar thing with Moses when God is about to destroy the whole tribe of Israel immediately  after God has made a covenant with Moses. Moses argues against God’s decision, and God changes His mind!

And the LORD said to Moses, “I have seen this people, and indeed it is a stiff-necked people!
Now therefore, let Me alone, that My wrath may burn hot against them and I may consume them. And I will make of you a great nation.”
Then Moses pleaded with the LORD his God, and said: “LORD, why does Your wrath burn hot against Your people whom You have brought out of the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand?
Why should the Egyptians speak, and say, ‘He brought them out to harm them, to kill them in the mountains, and to consume them from the face of the earth’? Turn from Your fierce wrath, and relent from this harm to Your people.
Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Your servants, to whom You swore by Your own self, and said to them, ‘I will multiply your descendants as the stars of heaven; and all this land that I have spoken of I give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.’ ”
So the LORD relented from the harm which He said He would do to His people.

Exodus 32:9-14

E. God was Forced to Act Decisively:

After God entered into a covenant with Abraham, Abraham acted foolishly by not saying that Sarah was his wife. She was very beautiful and Abimelech, a king from another Country, decided to take Sarah as his wife. Because of the covenant that God had made with Abraham that a son would come to him through his wife, God was forced to act decisively. He came to Abimelech in a dream letting him know that Sarah was Abraham’s wife, and that if he slept with her, then he and his family would be killed by God! This is how seriously God takes His covenant responsibilities.

 

Now Abraham said of Sarah his wife, “She is my sister.” And Abimelech king of Gerar sent and took Sarah.But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night, and said to him, “Indeed you are a dead man because of the woman whom you have taken, for she is a man’s wife.”But Abimelech had not come near her; and he said, “Lord, will You slay a righteous nation also? Did he not say to me, ‘She is my sister’? And she, even she herself said, ‘He is my brother.’ In the integrity of my heart and innocence of my hands I have done this.
“And God said to him in a dream, “Yes, I know that you did this in the integrity of your heart. For I also withheld you from sinning against Me; therefore I did not let you touch her. Now therefore, restore the man’s wife; for he is a prophet, and he will pray for you and you shall live. But if you do not restore her, know that you shall surely die, you and all who are yours.”

Genesis 20:2-7

F. The Importance of Covenant in the nature of God 

Understanding the view that God has of covenant is potentially the most important of the Old Testament Revelations of God.


9. Summary:

The Old Testament Revelation of God so far:

  • The Trinity are the Pre-Existing Ones.
  • Our heavenly Father’s original plan was to have sons and daughters.
  • God lives inside of His creation (but can choose to live outside of creation).
  • He lives inside of time (but can choose to live outside of time).
  • Yahweh/Elohim is relational with man, in the same way father is relational with man.
  • God is covenant-keeping, and therefore relational.
  • He can change His mind except if it breaks covenant.

Now we will look at the first two attributes of Yahweh – Jireh and Rapha


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