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Elohim - Who is He? And who are the 'judges?'



The meaning of the word Elohim, and where it comes from

Do you know that originally, the title 'God' did not appear in our Bibles? Originally the word used to describe the Creator was the Hebrew word, Elohim. This word is plural, in Hebrew meaning three or more. In many languages, including English, the number categories are singular and plural, meaning any group other than singular. however, some languages have an additional category named dual, meaning two.
In Hebrew the word 'dual' means two, and 'plural' means three or more. (taken from "The Numbers" in the Hebraic Introduction in the Newberry Bible)
To quote from "Unfolding Hebrew Grammar." "In Biblical Hebrew, a term with plural form usually refers to multiple persons or objects."
The word Elohim is the plural of El and is the first name for the Creator given in the Tanakh: "In the beginning, Elohim created the heavens and the earth" (Genesis 1:1) and it includes the meanings, "magistrates; angels, judges, mighty" simply, government. The name Elohim is unique to Hebraic thinking: it occurs only in Hebrew and in no other ancient Semitic language. The masculine plural ending does not mean "gods" when referring to the true God of Israel, since the name is mainly used with singular verb forms and with adjectives and pronouns in the singular (e.g. see Gen. 1:26).

However, considering the Creator, the form indeed allows for the plurality within the Almighty. Gen 1:26 And Elohim said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness...." Definitely plural in meaning. We understand of course, that this scripture includes Yahshua the Son and the holy Spirit, being part of that Divinity.
Gen 3:9 "And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?" This should read: "And Yahweh Elohim called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?" The first part of the Name, 'LORD' meaning His actual name,Yahweh, and the second part, 'God' applied by way of deference which includes magistrates, angels, judges, mighty ones) i.e. The Almighty in His fulness. Yahweh, Yahshua, the holy Spirit and the Council.
Elohim is made up, seemingly, of Divinity and Council, or, Kingship and Council as in judges and magistrates, i.e. the Government, or Legislative Body.

This word, Elohim, occurs over 2,570 times in the Tanakh, but has been removed and replaced by the dubious title, God. Some examples, of where the title Elohim should be, see Isa. 54:5, Jer. 32:27; Gen. 1:1; Isa. 45:18; Deut. 5:23; etc.
"Then where did the concept 'Trinity' come from?" I hear you ask. If Elohim could possibly mean more than three persons, where did the idea of a triune Creator originate? Well, this word and concept did not come into common use as a religious term until centuries after the last books of the Bible were completed and long after the apostles of Messiah were gone from the scene! For we cannot find this word in the Scriptures anywhere. In point of fact it was introduced by Tertullion. He adopted this and many other ideas from pagan teachings and could not support them from Scripture, but he thought that if Christians adopted some heathen rituals of the pagans that they would find it easier to join Christianity. Could the trinity doctrine have pagan origins then?
Here is an interesting study on this subject if you would like to momentarily digress... I do not wish to demigrate the holiness of Supreme Divinity by making light of these issues in any way. There is no doubt, according to scripture that there exists The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit - but only that perhaps we limit the heavenly Being, when the scriptures mention 'the seven Spirits of Elohim' and other such descriptions of His Divine Presence which we are examining here. We only desire to broaden our minds and concepts of the One we serve to give Him more esteem and to realise He is so very much more magnificent a Being than we could ever conceive.

What is wrong with the name 'God?'

This word is used first in Genesis 1:1, "In the beginning (Elohim) created the heavens and the earth."
The characteristics of the Most High Elohim, by replacing it by the word 'God' throughout the Bible, have rather misled many seekers of truth, and denied them a full experience of the one and only true Deity. By substituting the word Elohim by the rather ambiguous word 'God' or 'Gawd' to use the original spelling, suggests an absolute 'oneness' as in one apple, one book, etc. as singular in meaning, which of course, is incorrect when speaking of the Most High.

The word 'Gawd' was taken originally from the Assyrian deity Gawd, being transated 'God' in English. We find references in Scripture to a deity, spelled GD in the Hebrew text but this time vowel-pointed to read "Gawd" or "God" (Josh 11:17, 12:7, 13:5), where we find "Baal-Gawd" or "Baal-God," according to the vowel-pointed Massoretic Hebrew text. This Baal-Gawd or Baal-God was obviously a place named after their deity.
Jos 11:17 "Even from the mount Halak, that goeth up to Seir, even unto Baalgad (bah'-al gawd From H1168 and H1409; Baal of Fortune; Baal Gad, a place in Syria: - Baal-gad.) in the valley of Lebanon under mount Hermon: and all their kings he took, and smote them, and slew them."
We are responsible, as believers, to uphold the truth written in the original text. The name 'God' then is not only quite an incorrect translation of the word Elohim which was in the original text, but it also has dubious origins and connotations, and perhaps should be replaced by the correct word Elohim, especially by those of us who carry the responsiblity of teaching the truth.
Psalm 119:1-4 declares, "Keep (naw-tsar' A primitive root; to guard, ) Yahweh's statutes" ( a mandate of Elohim; plural only, collectively for the Law) i.e. the Laws of a legislative body, i.e. three or more.

What does the word 'Elohim' include, then, being plural?

In Strongs concordance, the Hebrew definition of Elohim, (Elohiym, el-o-heem:) No. H430 is the plural of H433, and it means, specifically, the one true Deity. Specifically used (in the plural, especially with the article) of the supreme Creator; occasionally applied by way of deference to magistrates; and sometimes as a superlative - angels, exceeding, very great, judges, mighty.
So, we see that within the Almighty, there are functions or if you like, magistrates, judges, mighty ones, great ones, angels. This suggests that in Elohim there is a council, there is a system similar to our own earthly judiciary. In Revelation we read of many beings in the heavenly court, in the heavenly abode, i.e. Rev 4:1 After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet (as in quavering) talking with me; which said, "Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter." Who was this? Part of Elohim? Someone He had created? or was it plainly part of Himself? One could discuss this forever without ever understanding... But we know that in the heavenly realm, there are beings, created or otherwise, part of that Divine being or of His Council with the capability and functions of the offices of magistrates, judges and members if you like, of the heavenly Council.
Rev 4:4 And round about the throne were four and twenty seats: and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold. Who were these Elders? Were they elected beings, created, or part of Elohim?
Rev 4:5 And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of Elohim. Seven Spirits? What does this mean? We only know from these and other 'mind-blowing' scriptures, that there is so much of the Almighty, the One we serve, that we (in this temporal body and sphere) will never fully comprehend.
We know there are angels, of different types and sizes, allotted different responsibilities. Because they do the bidding of the Almighty, are they also, part of Him, part of His Council?
Rev 5:2 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, "Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?"
Rev 5:11 And I beheld, and I heard the voice of many angels round about the throne and the beasts and the elders: and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands;
Rev 8:2 And I saw the seven angels which stood before Elohim; and to them were given seven trumpets.
Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Yahshua (Jesus), and for the word of Elohim, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Messiah a thousand years. Reigned with Him? Does that mean that even we, when changed ('in the twinkling of an eye') shall be indeed part of that Council of judges, or magistrates?
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before Elohim; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

Are the 12 disciples to be a part then, of Elohim?

Indeed, the disciples will take part of that judgement in the day appointed...
Mat 19:28 And Yahshua said unto them, "Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel."
Does this make the disciples part of the magistrates, judges. part of Elohim? The work 'judging' here is from Strongs G2919 and it means, (krino, kree'-no;) to distinguish, i.e. decide (mentally or judicially); by implication, to try, condemn, punish, avenge, conclude, condemn, damn, decree, determine, esteem, judge, go to (sue at the) law, ordain, call in question, sentence to, think. In a 'nutshell' yes, they are to be a part of the Legislative body which will one day judge mankind.
Luk 22:29 And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me;
Luk 22:30 That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Joh 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Spirit:
Joh 20:23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

Did Ruth change Gods?

No, of course not. She became part of another tribe, the tribe of Judah. She herself being a Reubenite, (see article Ruth the Reubenite) merely changed judges!
Indeed, each tribe had leaders who were judges. In Ruth we read that Ruth proclaimed to Naomi "Thy God shall be my God!" When you read the article re. Ruth's ancestry, you will find that she was indeed part of the tribe of Reuben. Boaz being from the tribe of Judah would never have 'married out' (of the Tribes of Israel, as this would be directly against Torah as he correctly understood it. (Deu 7:3 Neither shalt thou make marriages with them; thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son.)
Rth 1:16 And Ruth said, "Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:"(elohiym, el-o-heem; plural of H433; ...applied by way of deference to magistrates; and sometimes as a superlative - angels, exceeding, ... judges, mighty.) Note, that in the next verse, she is referring to Yahweh, as Deity, NOT the judges of the Tribes. Rth 1:17 "Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD (yeh-ho-vaw' From H1961; the self Existent or eternal; Yahweh, Jewish national name of God: ) do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me."

"According to the pattern"

When Moses eventually came down from Mount Sinai, he spoke to Israel about building the Tabernacle, he spoke to them about every detail of the hangings, priesthood, utensils and worship. All had to be a replica of what Moses saw in the heavens. Exo 25:40 And look that thou make them after their pattern, which was shewed thee in the mount.
It will be safe then to assume, that there is a place of worship (and we also read this in Revelation of course, and it is suggested in Hebrews and many other parts of the New Covenant scriptures) in the heavenlies. There is an order of Priesthood, there are utensils, there is a Holy of Holies etc. etc. Also, we are able to understand that judgements are also made. We see an example in Zechariah.
In chapter 3:1-7 we read of satan accusing Joshua the High Priest before the 'Angel of the Lord'. We assume, from Ezra 10:18, that it may have been because he married out of his tribe. We read how the Angel commanded (to others there!) to give him a change of garments, and we read a new proclamation given over him by Yahweh Himself...
Zec 3:7 Thus saith the Yahweh of hosts; "If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house, and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by."
So, there is also judgement by 'magistrates' or 'judges' in the Council in the Heavens. Fascinating. The word 'Elohim' teaches us much about the Supreme Being and the heavenly council. We have much to learn.
We sometimes have glimpses of His magnitude and diversity. Hopefully we will broaden our minds to see His vastness, His Being, His Court and His Judgement Seat and His Council in the Heavenlies.

Conclusion: The order of a Kingdom.

In any kingdom, there has to be an order. There is first the head, or King. Then there comes the family of the King, part of Himself. Then there is a Government in which there are Judges, the Citizens of that kingdom.
Yahweh's Kingdom is ordered, with a Legislative body, judges, and leaders, along with a way of life, with laws and commandments common to all. The Scriptures teach us that Israel was ordered in such a way, and that Moses was to build the government of Israel 'according to the pattern'. From this we know that this is Yahweh's prescribed order for His people. Why would we think that the heavenly Kingdom would be ordered any differently? (only in the respect of government and order you realise, the heavenly Kingdom is of course, so very much more...)
Deu 4:8:"And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes (H2706 Statute=choq, khoke; from H2710; an enactments, appointments of time, space, quantity, labor or usage - appointed, bound, commandments, customs, decrees, laws, ordinances, judgments) so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?
Yahshua said, that the Kingdom of Heaven is within us, so we too fit into a Kingdom with an order, with laws, it is not unruly or a free-for-all. Yahweh Himself, through His government of Israel demonstrated His Kingdom order to humanity, and Yahshua carried that on. He ordained leaders, He gave them gifts and abilities suitable for their office. He has plans for us all when He returns to rule the earth for 1,000 years, and we are being prepared to yes, take our place. Does this mean, then, that we are to be a part of that self-same government, be part of Elohim? The Scriptures and the meaning of the word Elohim does indeed point to this conclusion. This is an awesome thought, that in the regeneration, when Yahshua comes to reign on this earth, He is going to include the 'blessed and holy' ones in His Government on earth after the first resurrection. Notice, that it is only the 'blessed and holy' ones (Rev. 20:6) who will be a part of that first resurrection and His Government at that time. Surely this is something worth fighting for, something worth dedicating one's life for, a goal, a hope, an expectation...
Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Yahshua, and for the word of Elohim, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Messiah a thousand years.
Rev 20:5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
Rev 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of Elohim and of Messiah, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
We need to pray, that we will be thought worthy to be a part of the first resurrection, part of that ruling Kingdom on earth.