Saturday, September 17, 2016

Christopher Seitz on the Tetragrammaton

Taken from the book edited by Alvin F. Kimel, Jr. entitled This Is My
Name Forever: The Trinity & Gender Language for God
(Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2001), page 26:

"The notion that God has a proper name and can be differentiated from
other deities with proper names is absolutely clear in the Old
Testament. Other gods (ELOHIM) lay claims on humanity, but Israel is
to have no god (ELOHIM) before or beside YHWH (Ex 20:3). Moreover, the character of the name is itself a matter of reverence, since the name really coheres with the God it names (20:7). One cannot therefore malign the name or substitute for the name another name, and somehow leave untouched the deity with whom the name is attached . . . Not taking the name of YHWH in vain implies, at a minimum, understanding
that YHWH is not an 'accident' [non-essential property] detachable
from a deeper 'substance,' that is, 'God himself.'"

Contrast the early church fathers, who believed God the Father does not have a proper name or does not need to be distinguished from other entities since he is sui generis.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reference, Edgar, that one's a keeper:)