Bible Study

Elohim – God the Creator

The understanding of Elohim, as God the Creator, is the foundation of our Christian faith. It underpins our belief in His Sovereignty, that God is the Creator of everything and He governs the Universe. Scripture teaches that creation declares God’s rule and authority, and that all life is sustained by God. These are fundamental truths that shape our daily life now and are the basis of our hope. Our confidence is founded on the belief that God is the beginning and so we can also trust that He holds the future!

God the Creator

Scripture teaches that Creation declares the glory of God. What we see in the order and beauty of the natural world reveals to us the character of God. The apostle Paul declares that no-one has an excuse for not honouring God, because His invisible qualities are clearly seen in what He has made. Whether you have ever picked up and read a Bible, or heard the gospel, the natural world is an inherent witness to our Creator.

Some people in order to find God, will read a book. But there is a great book, the book of created nature. Look carefully at it top and bottom, observe it, read it.

Augustine of Hippo (4th Century)

Jesus often sought solace in the ‘lonely places.’ He would withdraw to the mountains or hills to connect and engage with the Father in prayer. In western society, we have the privilege of education and access to the Bible to encourage and develop our love for God’s word. But often we are far less connected with the rhythm and pattern of the natural world. And in the clamour of a busy life, we may miss those opportunities of awe and reverence for the majesty of God’s creation.

Those times when I can get away for a long walk, in the mountains or by the sea, are invaluable. In the wide open spaces my perspective will change – my problems seem smaller and God appears bigger! Finding a place where we can connect with God is so important. We all need that space without distractions to receive God’s peace, for any confusion to be replaced with clarity, and to be refreshed.

What does Elohim mean?

Elohim is the Hebrew word for God which refers to His creative power and authority. Elohim is God who spoke and called into being the world and all that is in it. It is interesting to note that in the Old Testament Scriptures the Hebrew verb for ‘create’ is only ever used for divine, not human, activity. Elohim is the One who can create something out of nothing and call into being that which does not exist.

…..the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.

Romans 4:17

The same God who by the power of the Holy Spirit calls us to faith, creating something out of nothing within us, the inner confidence and assurance about what we do not see. By faith we come to God and believe in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour.

By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.

Hebrews 11:13

Without faith it is impossible to please God. To come to know Him, we have to believe that He exists, and that God is the source of all life.

Whenever I am afield or outdoors, there steals over me the acute consciousness that I am confronted on every hand by the superb workmanship of my Father. It is as if every tree, rock, river, flower, mountain, bird, or blade of grass had stamped upon it the indelible label, ‘Made by God.’

Phillip Keller
A view of a calm still sea at sunset, with the text 'Made by God' and 'Elohim - God the creator.'
Elohim – God the Creator

Where is Elohim first used in the Bible?

The first phrase in the Bible ‘in the beginning’ is translated from the Hebrew ‘bereshith’ which is also the title for the book. This was the custom in ancient times to name a book after the first word or two. The English title, Genesis, originates from a Greek word, which can mean birth, genealogy, or history of origin. Both titles describe the contents of the first book in the Bible which is all about ‘beginnings.’ Elohim is the Hebrew word for God which is used in the first sentence of the Bible. It then appears thirty-two times in Genesis chapter one in the account of Creation.

“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1
“And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. Genesis 1:3
“And God said,” Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water.”  Genesis 1:6
“And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear.” Genesis 1:9
“Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds.” Genesis 1:11
“And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years, and let them be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on earth.” And it was so.” Genesis 1:14-15
“And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky.” Genesis 1:20
“And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” Genesis 1:24
“Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” Genesis 1:26
“God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” Genesis 1:31

God spoke, and the power of His word never fails. His word speaks into the void – but does not return to Him empty. When God speaks, there is purpose and authority behind His words, and something happens! At the sound of God’s voice there is a shift and a change in the atmosphere. His creative power reverberates with cause and effect for God’s word always accomplishes His purpose!

Created in God’s Image

Elohim, God the Creator is foundational to our faith as the substance of who we are – His children. We alone are made ‘in the image’ of our Heavenly Father. God has given mankind stewardship of the earth – to rule over His creation – and with that comes a responsibility to care for all that He has made.

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

Genesis 1:27

When we reflect that we bear God’s image, our perspective of our value and worth changes. All life is sacred because we bear the image of God not because of any inherent qualities or abilities that we may possess. All life deserves protection and care.

For you created my innermost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Psalm 139:13-14

God made us in His image and in His likeness, that we might relate to Him, revealing our special relationship. God walked in the Garden of Eden in the cool of the day, enjoying fellowship with Adam and Eve, that was, and is, God’s intention for His creation to be with His people.

Each one of us is created by design – not by chance. We are uniquely made by God, each one an original and not an imitation. There are no mistakes with God the Creator, we are His workmanship. Knowing that you are loved by God brings confidence to be who God created you to be! There is a place for each one of us, a space which God has prepared, to grow into the fullness of who He intends us to be!

“…..Even before we were born, God planned in advance our destiny and the good works we would do to fulfill it! Ephesians 2:10 TPT

God the Creator Quotes

“Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.” Isaiah 40:28

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – his eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” Romans 1:20

“For this is what the LORD says – he who created the heavens, he is God; he who fashioned and made the earth, he founded it; he did not create it to be empty, but formed it to be inhabited – he says: “I am the LORD and there is no other.”” Isaiah 45:18

A view out to sea at sunset with the quote 'The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.' Psalm 19:1 reflecting on Elohim - God the creator.
Elohim – God the Creator

“By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what is visible.” Hebrews 11:3

“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and stars, which you have set in place, what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?…..LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!” Psalm 8:3-4, 9.

“How many are your works, LORD! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.” Psalm 104:24

“Let all creation rejoice before the LORD, for he comes, he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples in his faithfulness.” Psalm 96:13

“You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honour and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” Revelation 4:11

“Praise him, sun and moon, praise him, all you shining stars. Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies. Let them praise the LORD, for at his command they were created, and he established them for ever and ever – he issued a decree that will never pass away.” Psalm 148:3-6

Night sky over the sea, with a lighthouse in the foreground and the text 'Made by God' and 'Elohim - God the Creator.'
Elohim – God the Creator

‘Created by design’ looking for more answers? Created or Evolved?

Questions regarding the Biblical account of creation? Answers in Genesis Magazine

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