De Moor IV:3: Categorization of the Divine Names

Other names…Incommunicable among the Divine Names are thus able, 1. to be held as appellatives, as it were, which are attributed in the Sacred Codex, although absolutely and emphatically to the true God, sometimes to created things and even to the gods of the gentiles; these are אֵל/El, אֱלֹהַּ/Eloah, אֱלֹהִים/Elohim, אֲדֹנָי/Adonai. 2. Those are able to be called more Proper that are attributed to no one but God, of which two, יָהּ/Jah and שַׁדַּי/Shaddai, are truly proper Names, but עֶלְיוֹן/Elyon, Most High, is rather an epithet and title: and, although עֶלְיוֹן/Elyon most precisely appears to be appellative, yet it is also so far proper that it is nowhere used thus simply and emphatically, as of God, of any one, certain, singular, created person. 3. Finally, among the rest יְהוָה/ Jehovah is the most proper: see VRIEMOET’S Adnotationes ad Dicta classica Veteris Testamenti, part I, chapter III, pages 118, 132, 137. BUXTORF, Dissertatione de Nominibus Dei Hebraicis, § 5, reduces the Hebraic Names of God to two Classes, inasmuch as he considers some as taken from the Essence of God, like יְהוָה/Jehovah, אֶהְיֶה/Ehyeh,[1] יָהּ/Jah: the rest as sought from His Effects and Attributes.

[1] Exodus 3:14: “And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AMאֶֽהְיֶ֖ה אֲשֶׁ֣ר) אֶֽהְיֶ֑ה): and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM (אֶהְיֶה) hath sent me unto you.”


Dr. Steven Dilday holds a BA in Religion and Philosophy from Campbell University, a Master of Arts in Religion from Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia), and both a Master of Divinity and a  Ph.D. in Puritan History and Literature from Whitefield Theological Seminary.  He is also the translator of Matthew Poole's Synopsis of Biblical Interpreters and Bernardinus De Moor’s Didactico-Elenctic Theology.




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