The contemplation of God’s names, epithets and descriptions is one of the richest endeavors in biblical study. Many have taken up this challenge, and as a result there is no lack of books tackling this inexhaustible task—proof of the fascination this subject has engendered in God’s people.
Mere humans have only a few names: our surnames, given names, middle names, nicknames, religiously given names, etc. Occasionally even an epithet can become the common way to refer to a person. But the list of “labels” assigned to God in Scripture is virtually unending, with every slight difference between one label and another sparking deep reflection on His character. That is why so many have undertaken the study—to gain and to share a deep appreciation of God as presented in Scripture.
So why another book on this subject? This one puts the study into the reading format characterized by the Day by Day series of expositional meditations. Therefore, it encourages daily meditation on the person and character of God as uniquely revealed in His names and epithets. Each page is dedicated to examining one of these “labels” set out for daily reading, five days a week, for one year – almost 260 in all. (A few names, like the primary one that God Himself gives, Yahweh, are afforded multiple pages, but each with a distinct perspective.)
This study has been more of a blessing to the author than it could ever be to the readers. But nothing supersedes an author’s thoughts and ideas better than those that arise in the reader’s mind as a result. In that sense this book is a springboard, a catalyst of growth in your depth of knowing God and appreciating Him.
A few notes of explanation:
Generally, these studies are divided into those references found in the Old Testament and those found in the New Testament. Within that divide, related names are sometimes grouped together, and at other times the names are treated in alphabetical order. In a few instances, a single passage of Scripture may include multiple names and/or epithets, and these are treated together in sequence. It would be impossible to be absolutely consistent apart from a pure alphabetical order or in order of first mention in the Bible. But those approaches seemed overly arbitrary.
Like all the other Day by Day volumes, this present one is designed to be read devotionally, one page per day.