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Eph 3:14 ¶ For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;

This is the only verse in Scripture that defines Elohiym  or Theos or GOD as a simple English word.

This word is the word "family".

What do other SDA people think of this verse?

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Greeting Gene

Are you changing the meaning of Elohiym as given in Ephesians 3:10 to 16?

to lineage??

trust Strong's??

Why not read the Bible as it reads?

Eph 3:15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,

It says every family in heaven is named?? Is this correct? Do you agree with this Bible verse?

Does the Most High have an old name? as well as a new name? What does SOP say?

Do SDA people go looking for the old name? Or do they read the new name : Father?

The Hebrew-English translator, the SOP says

In order to strengthen our confidence in God, Christ teaches us to address Him by a new name, a name entwined with the dearest associations of the human heart. He gives us the privilege of calling the infinite God our Father. "Asking to Give By Ellen G. White"

  • He pointed His hearers to the Ruler of the universe, under the new name, �Our Father.� He would have them understand how tenderly the heart of God yearned over them. He teaches ... that �like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him� (Psalm 103:13).

Notice SOP make a simile to Most High like a earth father. SOP also uses the term heavenly parent. SOP also uses the term family, lots of times? Don't you trust these SOP words?

So what is the old name for Most High?  Eloah

The new name for "wisdom" or "holy shekiah" or "mercy" is Holy Spirit.

The old name is Shadday.

The new name for our Saviour is Yashuah.

The old name is Michael.

Elohiym is a family picture, can mean family pagan gods, family judges, or family power of GOD

This meaning does not appear in the OT, but only in the NT.... Why is that? Because as you say, the Son only continues the love of GOD in human lineage from NT times, since He was incarnate with Human lineage. So I agree with you in part.

Gene writes: "the Eternal is eternal and is not a he or she

Have you studied the Hebrew scriptures on this?

Would you read our link and study all the evidence?

http://spiritualsprings.org/ss-1330.htm

Read this fair assessment of mine. You cannot say Eternal is neither he or she. This violates why Hebrew has grammar labelling of words, and two love words, and two personalities of loving for each creature kind. SOP says the Father has a face simile to Jesus as a face, yes not of matter, not as we see things, but it is a face, therefore with personality, as love is a personality. Do you understand there are two love words in our Bibles? Why is this?

http://spiritualsprings.org/ss-1518.htm   A study of both love words:

Eph 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God (elohiym) "family powers", who created all things by Jesus Christ:

  • Eph 3:14 � For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
  • 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
  • 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;

Comment on the verse, rather than write it off. SOP speaks of "heavenly parent" "old name for GOD" as well as "heavenly family".

The word is not referring to lineage of things, but the naming of things. The redeemed get new names as GOD has new names. GOD is a picture of Family.

Light is a picture of Family (we term the electromagnetic family) sure this power has no "he" or "she" but your defining pronouns to suit humans. What if the terms have different functions: provider and responder?  Is not a proton a provider and an electron a responder? I don't pretend to know all things, SOP says read Scripture just as it reads. Your changing the context, because you don't like the picture both Bible and SOP presents. Shalom

Hi Rob

No, I don’t think I’m changing Elohiym as given in Ephesians 3:10 to 16.

ʼĕlôhîym, el-o-heem'; plural of H433; gods in the ordinary sense; but specifically used (in the plural thus, especially with the article) of the supreme God; occasionally applied by way of deference to magistrates; and sometimes as a superlative:—angels, × exceeding, God (gods) (-dess, -ly), × (very) great, judges, × mighty.

14For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,

The signature of God or the name of God is on all that is created, this is undeniable.

I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ…

How is God the Father of Jesus Christ? Certainly not in the same manner as we being the father of our children.

The word father is defined as:

 3962 patḗr – father; one who imparts life and is committed to it; a progenitor, bringing into being to pass on the potential for likeness.

A father is one who imparts life, the supreme God, the Eternal imparts life to all. It is the Eternal God who is the Source of all life.

How then was Jesus the expressed image God?

Hebrews 1:3 says, “Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person…”

The Darby translation uses the term effulgence.

who being the effulgence of his glory and the expression of his substance.

Jesus did not face of God or shall I say he did not physically look like God, but the true essences or substance of God radiated from him.

Jesus said to Philip,

… I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?

The Father, the Source of all life resides in all of us, Jesus was untuned to the very Source and it radiated from him.

If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?

In other words, if you want to see God, look at your brother. The very source of God, the image of God is in your brother. Paul alludes to this in this way.

That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man…

This is what Jesus was teaching in John 4:24 when he said,

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

We can’t worship God in the physical or the material, no matter much we dress up and go to church. There has to be a spirit to spirit connection, that’s why God put his image in man.

Zechariah 12:1 … saith the LORD, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him.

Job 32:8 But there is a spirit in a man, the breath of the Almighty, that gives him understanding.

Elohiym is in man, and is living in this human body. Human beings don’t act like Jesus, but we can, there a lack of knowledge that God is us.

…Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.

God is our Father; the Eternal is the One who imparts life in whom we all are named.

Thanks for getting back to me Gene. That was a really good answer.

But you didn't read my link, or the SOP comments. I hope you are influenced by SOP comments, as much as Scripture?

Why does SOP use the term "heavenly family", "heavenly parent" ? Have you considered this?

Asking scholars to define a Hebrew word is NOT how we study words, Gene. We look up every line upon line, for a English word that fits all contexts. Unless you believe in polysemy, which is what scholars do. Notice your meaning:

angels,  exceeding, God (gods)  great, judges, 

Other scholars like Jeff Benner translate "elohiym" more fairly as "powers". At least that English word fits all contexts, and is a single meaning.

You have avoided the Ephesians 3:10- 16 context :

Eph 3:14 � For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,

  • 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
  • 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;

Why list all members of this family in heaven, if it's not alluding to this, Gene?

Does "Family powers" fit all contexts of "elohiym"? Yes

A judge you judges you has authority from a family of judges.

A pagan god is one of many from a family of pagan gods.

In the beginning the family powers, He created the earth and heavens. Gen 1:1

But instead of writing this one verse off as you do saying GOD is in all things, which is not what the context is saying, let's look for evidence of pictures of family in GOD.... Are there any Scriptures on this? Yes there are, if you go looking.

You ask the Father in heaven is not as a father on earth to his children. Than you use scholars to define the word. The Hebrew word "ab" is listed by Jeff Benner as two words of polysemy, but I disagree with this. Is there a single English word that fits all contexts? Yes there is...

Song 6:11  I went down into the garden of nuts to see the fruits (ab) of the valley, and to see whether the vine flourished, and the pomegranates budded.

Here is "ab" the Hebrew word for Father. SO what single English word fits all contexts?

Song 6:11  I went down into the garden of nuts to see the PROVIDER (ab) of the valley, and to see whether the vine flourished, and the pomegranates budded.

A father is a provider, not a picture of a Being that causes the lineage of children as we are used to thinking the word means. The Hebrew word "son" means the "home across the nations" the idea that a Son continues the love from the home, over the nations of others.

Does Jesus become One who continues the love of the Father over the NATIONS. Yes indeed.

Now if elohiym is a picture of family, we would expect two unique personalities of loving, two heavenly parents, and the Son, to be born as earthly humans are born. Did the humanity of Jesus begin in this way? Yes it did.

SDA people such as James Stump lament and get sad, thinking Jesus must also have a beginning, otherwise "son" and "father" are role playing terms. But the Hebrew words do not mean what we think they mean? Divinity is a eternal uncaused cause. It has to be this way.

You made no comment on SOP

The Hebrew-English translator, the SOP says

In order to strengthen our confidence in God, Christ teaches us to address Him by a new name, a name entwined with the dearest associations of the human heart. He gives us the privilege of calling the infinite God our Father. "Asking to Give By Ellen G. White"

Are there two names of GOD as similes of heavenly parents? Yes

Job 4:9

  • By the blast of God (eloah) "Father" they perish,
  • and by the breath (ruwach) "Holy Spirit" of his nostrils are they consumed.

These two Names of GOD are common in the oldest book of the Bible. But translated away by translators. However SOP does use the term "heavenly parent".

Notice this functional role producing the humanity in their Son:

Lu 1:35 And the angel answered and said unto her,

  • The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee,
  • and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee:
  • therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

    Notice three things in this verse:

  • The power of the Highest is the Father,
  • The Holy Spirit also comes over Mary
  • there are two Beings in the born process..

    This is perhaps the strongest evidence that the Father and the Holy Spirit have contrasting functional descriptors, because these two Beings are together during the mystery we call incarnation.

Shalom

Our Hebrew-English translator, the SOP says

In order to strengthen our confidence in God, Christ teaches us to address Him by a new name, a name entwined with the dearest associations of the human heart. He gives us the privilege of calling the infinite God our Father. "Asking to Give By Ellen G. White"

Are there OLD names of GOD as similes of heavenly parents? Yes

Job 4:9

  • By the blast of God (eloah) "Father" they perish,
  • and by the breath (ruwach) "Holy Spirit" of his nostrils are they consumed.

These two Names of GOD are common in the oldest book of the Bible. But translated away by translators. Why does the SOP does use the term "heavenly parent" for the Father? If there is not another heavenly parent?

Shalom

Thanks for your reply Rob you pose the question: “Could it be that "personality traits of love" are somehow wired into our genetics or hormonal balance?”

We are created in the Image of God, and as we know God is love, clearly with all those texts you show there is an idea that God has indeed implanted the capacity to love. But as we know after the fall Satan has marred that quality. Still we see some persons have an enormous capacity for love while others have not much love.

The Bible does not give us much in detail about the love Adam and Eve had. Reading between the lines we understand that Adam was prepared to give up eternal life because he loved Eve that much.

EGW gives us this: No longer free to stir up rebellion in heaven, Satan’s enmity against God found a new field in plotting the ruin of the human race. In the happiness and peace of the holy pair in Eden he beheld a vision of the bliss that to him was forever lost.

An expression of sadness came over the face of Adam. He appeared astonished and alarmed. To the words of Eve he replied that this must be the foe against whom they had been warned; and by the divine sentence she must die. In answer she urged him to eat, repeating the words of the serpent, that they should not surely die. She reasoned that this must be true, for she felt no evidence of God’s displeasure, but on the contrary realized a delicious, exhilarating influence, thrilling every faculty with new life, such, she imagined, as inspired the heavenly messengers. {PP 56.1}

Adam understood that his companion had transgressed the command of God, disregarded the only prohibition laid upon them as a test of their fidelity and love. There was a terrible struggle in his mind. He mourned that he had permitted Eve to wander from his side. But now the deed was done; he must be separated from her whose society had been his joy. How could he have it thus? Adam had enjoyed the companionship of God and of holy angels. He had looked upon the glory of the Creator. He understood the high destiny opened to the human race should they remain faithful to God. Yet all these blessings were lost sight of in the fear of losing that one gift which in his eyes outvalued every other. Love, gratitude, loyalty to the Creator—all were overborne by love to Eve. She was a part of himself, and he could not endure the thought of separation. He did not realize that the same Infinite Power who had from the dust of the earth created him, a living, beautiful form, and had in love given him a companion, could supply her place. He resolved to share her fate; if she must die, he would die with her. After all, he reasoned, might not the words of the wise serpent be true? Eve was before him, as beautiful and apparently as innocent as before this act of disobedience. She expressed greater love for him than before. No sign of death appeared in her, and he decided to brave the consequences. He seized the fruit and quickly ate. {PP 56.2}

Wishing you a blessed festive season

That was a lovely quote from EGW; Elijah, well researched and posted. Thank you.

You have a wonderful experience remembering today our Saviour who came in humanity to rescue humanity and adopt us into the divine Family of GOD. What a blessing this was for all mankind, if we allow Salvation the GOD-MAN to come into our heart. Thanks for the reminder.

Part of the quote is well written:

 "Love, gratitude, loyalty to the Creator—all were overborne by love to Eve. She was a part of himself, and he could not endure the thought of separation".

Notice there are two styles of loving mentioned here, for Adam was overwhelmed by His love to Eden, he did not want her love to be separated from his love.

The next step in our quest of digging for treasure, is there within the Godhead Family, differences in the way each member of GOD loves, and thus , are there any differences in their personalities of loving?

We can see differences in the way animals kind love, and this personality of loving is created as two beings, the gender male and the gender female.

God is not of matter, space or time.  Therefore GOD cannot be referenced as gender male or gender female, as these beings are composed of matter. Love is a function, rather than a being per se'. God is pictured in terms humans see and observed, but this "darkly" is a  picture of the great uncaused cause.

God is love. So are there any hints of differences in the personalities of loving within the members of the Godhead? I would like to propose there are personality differences in how each member within the Godhead loves, as entities of being.

Consider this most powerful picture in Luke chapter 1:

Lu 1:31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
 32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:

The term "son of the highest", or the "most high" refers to our Heavenly Father.

Lu 1:35 And the angel answered and said unto her,

The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, (Holy Spirit)

and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee:  (Father)

therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee (born word used)

shall be called the Son of God. (Jesus added with humanity to His divinity)

Notice the born process where humanity is added to Jesus' divinity. How many members of the Godhead are used ? two

This function pictures a process as a simile of how earthly parents also do born on earth, yet we see darkly, the picture in the verses are there, the mystery of adding humanity to Jesus remains a mystery.

Some say "highest" parallels Holy Spirit, so this is one being. No, Because the term overshadow is used.

To make shadows you need two objects, one as light, the other blocking the light. Hence two members of the Godhead are here in this verse.

I will allow you time to comment on this verse:

Shalom my friend

To me God is the great healer.  Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies.  Who redeems your life from destruction and heals all your diseases.

I don't have bunches of time to give an all day research and all day post.  I have work to do.  & I can't come down off my post of duty.

Thanks for your reply  Andrew, at least you read the Bible verse.

One does not have to research a Bible verse, it's there to read by all.

The Bible verse was posted in the KJV version. We can discuss the verse as it reads.

You didn't make a comment about this Bible verse. I hope my brother Elijah does.

But I thank you and others for reading this curious Bible verse about a picture of GOD.

Shalom

Thanks for your reply Rob I trust you had a pleasant festive season.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 

The word loved here does not bring home the full import of the word Love. So to me, we need to look in other parts of the Bible to find out what it really means. In Church's main prayer, in the adoration part, I say this: “Lord You who gave your only begotten for atonement for the whole world and in him poured out the whole treasure in heaven. There was nothing more You could have given.”

As you can see I have mixed some bible texts with some spirit of prophecy. In Philippians, we see a little more of what the cost of that love is.

Philippians 2:6  who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God, 7  but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Himself the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men. 8  And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. 

Now, of the human: He “was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death.” He voluntarily assumed human nature. It was His own act, and by His own consent. He clothed His divinity with humanity. He was all the while as God, but He did not appear as God. He veiled the demonstrations of Deity, which had commanded the homage, and called forth the admiration, of the universe of God. He was God while upon earth, but He divested Himself of the form of God, and in its stead took the form and fashion of a man. … But He humbled Himself, and took mortality upon Him. As a member of the human family, He was mortal; but as a God, He was the fountain of life to the world. He could, in His divine person, ever have withstood the advances of death, and refused to come under its dominion; but He voluntarily laid down His life, that in so doing He might give life and bring immortality to light. He bore the sins of the world, and endured the penalty, which rolled like a mountain upon His divine soul. He yielded up His life a sacrifice, that man should not eternally die. He died, not through being compelled to die, but by His own free will. This was humility. The whole treasure of heaven was poured out in one gift to save fallen man. He brought into His human nature all the life-giving energies that human beings will need and must receive. {5BC 1127.1}

... We are not our own. We have been “bought with a price” (1 Corinthians 6:20), not “with corruptible things, as silver and gold, ... but with the precious blood of Christ” (1 Peter 1:18, 19); “that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto Him which died for them, and rose again” (2 Corinthians 5:15). {COL 325.3}

All men have been bought with this infinite price. By pouring the whole treasury of heaven into this world, … {COL 326.1}

Since Jesus came to dwell with us, we know that God is acquainted with our trials, and sympathizes with our griefs. Every son and daughter of Adam may understand that our Creator is the friend of sinners. For in every doctrine of grace, every promise of joy, every deed of love, every divine attraction presented in the Saviour’s life on earth, we see “God with us.” {DA 24.1}

So this gives some Idea of the Love of God the Father and God the Son. Not to mention the Cost of that Love.

Shalom

Sir Rob,

I had a little bit of time on Christmas day to respond.  I don't believe that Jesus was talking through the Apostle about God being named only by "family."  Obviously God has Sons and Daughters.  And the family that we are talking about here is the whole family in heaven.  Could mean the Godhead and the saints and angels when we get there.  It could also mean that it is talking about us and our citizenship in heaven-now with the Godhead and the saved of all ages.  It definately means that we are to be with Jesus in heaven, called as family members of the Godhead-now.

Thank you both gentlemen for good and honest replies.

Elijah, they were beautiful quotes, and some parts of them, I see incredible Hebrew meanings in them,

"He yielded up His life a sacrifice, that man should not eternally die. He died, not through being compelled to die, but by His own free will. This was humility. The whole treasure of heaven was poured out in one gift to save fallen man. He brought into His human nature all the life-giving energies that human beings will need and must receive." {5BC 1127.1}

Humility means to look out for others. Jesus laid down His life for His friends.

"with this infinite price." Arrh  what cost salvation was, it brings tears to my eyes.

Elijah, you did not comment upon the verse in Luke 1 :35?

Lu 1:35 And the angel answered and said unto her,

The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, (Holy Spirit)

and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee:  (Father)

therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee (born word used)

shall be called the Son of God. (Jesus added with humanity to His divinity)

Andrew, so you suspect the verse, the only verse in the Bible defining elohiym or GOD, as Family, does not refer to the members of the Godhead, but to the created creatures, such as angels and humans? Fair enough

Eph 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

So what is a mystery from the beginning of the world hid in GOD?

In the OT the word "elohiym" is undefined. Jeff Benner just translates this word as "Elohiym powers" and this is a really respectful English meaning for the picture of GOD. In other words there is no English word that comes close in the OT. It is as Paul says "a mystery from the beginning of the world hid in GOD".

Notice Paul is asking believers to see what is the fellowship of the mystery, not so much the Creatorship of the mystery in Jesus.

Eph 3:10 To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,

The next verse speaks more to this idea. What is there about the "elohiym powers" made manifest in the wisdom of GOD. That word there in Greek is theos, but in Hebrew would have been "elohiym".

God is going to show Paul a new picture of elohiym powers.

Now if you do a study of the Hebrew word for family, as in the OT or NT, a family does not mean we include created creatures, such as our pets, the term family refers to creatures within its own kind. However the secular meaning of family may reference this idea, and you have brought this up.

Fair enough.  It's easy to figure out which meaning it may be referring to,

we simply look up other references, line upon line from Scripture and even the SOP to see if the word Family is indeed a picture of Elohiym itself.

Ge 1:26 ¶ And God said, Let us make man in our image,

Who is "us" here ?

Lu 1:35 And the angel answered and said unto her,

The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, (Holy Spirit)

and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee:  (Father)

therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee (born word used)

shall be called the Son of God. (Jesus added with humanity to His divinity)

Does this verse not place all the members of the Godhead into "family functional roles"?

So just by using these three Scriptures alone, and nothing else, we can begin to build a picture of GOD, that challenges us.

That is by no means the only glimpses of this picture, but we have begun to add line upon line, to put the little jigsaw pieces into a grand picture of GOD.

Shalom

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