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Page 21

God's names are far more important than human or location names, for they reveal something of God's Being, of who He is.

A deep love for God's name can be seen so beautifully in the following story:

    Polycarp was a very old man who had served as a minister in the early church at Smyrna for many years. During a time of Christian persecution, old Polycarp was captured and brought to trial before the Roman governor.

    A large crowd had gathered to witness his trial. The governor spoke to Polycarp and said, "Curse Jesus Christ and I will set you free." It became breathlessly quiet as all listened intently for Polycarp's answer.

    Polycarp answered, "For eighty-six years I have served Him and He has never done me any wrong. How then could I curse my King and Savior?"

    The Roman governor threatened him with death by wild animals or fire, but Polycarp remained firm. He would not dishonor or blaspheme his Lord, and consequently died a Christian martyr's death.

    Can you see the deep love for God's name in the life of Polycarp? Which did Polycarp love more - God's name or his own life? Which means more to you - God's name or your own?

1. El or Elohim (God) - The name "El" or "Elohim" means "the Mighty One." It reveals something of God's great power and speaks to us of the greatness of the almighty God. The name "El" or "Elohim" is written as "God" in our English Bible.

2. Adonai or Adon (Lord) - "Adonai" or "Adon" means "Ruler" or "Possessor." The name "Adonai" testifies of God as the possessor of, and ruler over, all things, including man. It speaks of God's power over nature and creation. In our Bible this name is printed as "Lord."

Is a deep love for God's name or your own witnessed more often in your life?


In the beginning God (Elohim) created the heaven and the earth.

- Genesis 1:1

And said, My Lord (Adonai), if now I have found favour in Thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from Thy servant.

- Genesis 18:3


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