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SOP understanding of shadday

Q7: SOP & Scripture understanding of "Shadday"

HYPOTHESIS: Does the Hebrew word "Shadday" refer to the "Holy Spirit" ?

INTRODUCTION: Looking at my poor means of communicating our theories of faith, to our Church Scholars many years ago, I pray that in time GOD can use our child like theories of faith, in sharing new light.

It seems our Church does not read Hebrew, but trusts implicitly in the English words of our translators. This is a sad state of affairs. If we do not read Hebrew in our English Scriptures, how do we know we have the "words" of Scripture? We don't. We are simply reading Scripture at best very poorly and very weakly...how do we know our translators are trustworthy and faithful? We don't. Is it difficult to study Scripture in Hebrew rather than English? With electronic Bible software, it is a real easy thing to do these days, just click and read the Interlinear words, and study the verses carefully to keep our translators honest. Do not trust the traditions of men. Trust the Holy Spirit instead and read the Scriptures carefully. Shalom

We pray that as we become more humble and filled with GOD, we can better present these theories faith more clearly. These are the comments on this theme written by a Church Scholar on this theory of faith, many years ago, in January 2007:

Quote:"

Shadday – A Name for the Holy Spirit?

Evaluation of a theory

It has been suggested that the name or designation for God “Shadday” is a reference to the Holy Spirit as the third person of the Godhead. In order to investigate and assess such a theory, the following questions are raised:

1. Does any of the actual occurrences of the term in the Old Testament explicitly point to or mention the Holy Spirit?

To substantiate the claim it would be expected that the link is very clear in a fair number of the texts.

2. Does any of the many references to the Holy Spirit in the New Testament where the role and function of the third person of the Godhead is more fully explained by Jesus and the apostles, refer to “Shadday” or to a term or concepts which naturally are understood as pointing to this Old Testament, Hebrew name for God?

Once again, to substantiate the claim and establish the theory, it would be expected that such a link is clear and explicit in a number of texts.

Procedure

In the process of assessing the theory, I have asked a present lecturer in Old Testament studies, expert in biblical languages and competent SDA theologian to read through the material independent of me, in order not to evaluate the theory single-handed. This scholar has given a large number of specific comments on the biblical texts and written them into the electronic manuscript received. The conclusions listed below form a consensus position.

Further, the following studies have been made (see attached files):

  • Occurrences of “Shadday” in the Old Testament

  • OT texts with “Shadday” in Greek: Septuagint and NT usage

  • Pantokrator in LXX

  • Pantokrator in the New Testament

    Ellen White’s use of “Shadday” and of translated OT texts where the name occurs in Hebrew

    Conclusion

    As the attached files show, the theory has been investigated from a number of angles. All occurrences of “Shadday” in the Old Testament have been studied. The Old Greek translations of these texts have been studied. All occurrences of the Greek word “pantokrator” both in Septuagint and in the New Testament have been studied.

    The investigation leads to a very clear and consistent answer to the questions raised and the theory presented:

    There is not even one single text of the Bible to suggest such an identification of “Shadday” with the Holy Spirit as the third person of the Godhead. It is not a question of whether there are some texts which can be understood that way. The link is simply totally absent from the Holy Scriptures.

    The conclusion is, therefore, self-evident. The theory is nothing but speculation. It has no biblical foundation whatsoever.

    For the sake of completion an evaluation has also been made of possible references by Ellen G. White. Statements from her pen have no authority in establishing biblical doctrines, yet may provide valuable biblical insight which we would otherwise have missed. The conclusion based on her writings is fully in line with the conclusions arrived from the biblical material. She never ever mentions the term “Shadday”; the biblical texts in which the term occurs are never used by her to refer to the Holy Spirit in specific; and the term “pantokrator” or “Almighty” is not once used in a way that would give any indication that the third person of the Godhead should be specifically in her mind.

    Further Comments

    The author of the theory deserves praise for his willingness to wrestle with the Biblical texts, and also for his support of the Biblical teaching of the Trinity to which the Seventh-day Adventist Church adheres.

    The eagerness to defend this position seems, however, to result in lack of careful reading of the texts, misunderstanding of grammar, and misappropriation of theological concepts. Such procedure is not needed. The heresies of, for instance, the group calling itself the Restitution Ministry, have been refuted on clear Biblical grounds. The theory proposed about “Shadday”, besides having no biblical foundation, is completely unnecessary. Further, some of the ideas used to support the theory tend toward classical pagan heresies, such as regarding the Holy Spirit as the “mother” and another parent of Jesus. And there is absolutely no reason, with a biblical understanding of the concept of “Fatherhood” and “Sonship” to regard this terminology as “semi-Arian”.

    "End quote.

    METHOD: The Author will present the clearest best defence to our theory of faith, with Scripture and SOP evidence.

    Dealing with others who have different assumptions of Scripture is difficult, so using common grounds of faith only, we shall present only clearest evidence.

    DISCUSSION: The presentation of Scripture and SOP with comments are below:

    (1) "Shadday" ..

    In the oldest book of the Scriptures:

    GOD presents to Job

  • three functional descriptors of GOD

    Job 40:1 Moreover the LORD "YHWH" answered Job, and said,

    2 Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty "Shadday" instruct him?

    he that reproveth God "Eloah", let him answer

    In the last book of the Scriptures:

    GOD presents to John

  • three functional descriptors of GOD

    Re 21:22 And I saw no temple therein:

    for the Lord "YHWH" God "Elohiym" Almighty "Shadday"

    and the Lamb are the temple of it.

    Now there are lots of other functional descriptors of GOD, but these ones shown are the most common, and especially the only ones used in Job and Revelation.

    Quote:" Pantokrator (Shadday) may then be seen a name or a title for God as such, without any specific or exclusive reference to one of the persons in the Godhead, .. " End Quote:

    Our Church scholars see "shadday" as a title for GOD, without specific reference to a member of the Godhead.

    If that is the case, we have only two functional descriptors of GOD mentioned in Job or Revelation, so it is impossible to establish that there are three persons within the Godhead.

    The comments "The heresies of, for instance, the group calling itself the Restitution Ministry, have been refuted on clear Biblical grounds."

    The author cannot see what these clear grounds are, because if we cannot show three functional descriptors of GOD in the oldest book or the last book, then we have only two functional descriptors of GOD, which is what Restitution Ministries teaches.

    ( As part of Restitution Ministries theory of faith, they say the Godhead was before sin entered the world, two members, and three members during sin on earth, and finally when sin is ended, we resort back to two members of the Godhead.)

    But if we all know that there are clearly three functional descriptors within the Godhead, why are we not willing to look into the OT Scriptures to find such a concept has existed since the beginning of time?

    (2) "What our Church scholars say "

    Quote: "There is not one single text which indicates that “Shadday” is a specific reference to a second or a third person within the Godhead. The Bible contains many names and designations for God. To conclude that the name Shadday refers to another person in the Godhead just because of its existence is no more logical than to make the similar claim for other divine names—making the Godhead to exist of a number of persons, certainly an absurd and unfounded conclusion. "End Quote.

    What other divine names are there for GOD? In Job ? the oldest book in Scripture.. The Hebrew word "eloah" references Father? does it not?...the problem is one cannot talk or discuss things long with scholars... it seems people do not like their own theories of faith being challenged. The number of emailed comments averages about three with most scholars. It seems the higher the scholarship, the less they are able to teach ones of child like faith.

    Quote: "On the contrary, Yahweh in His speech to Moses from the burning bush in Exodus 6:3 explicitly identifies Himself with “El Shadday”, that is, El Shadday is another name for Yahweh. The material states that “El Shadday” in this text is from Yahweh. This is without any grammatical basis and simply twists the biblical text to fit the presupposed theory. "End Quote.

    Ex 6:2 And God "Elohiym" spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the LORD "YHWH":

    3 And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by (the name of) God Almighty "El Shadday", but by my name "shem" JEHOVAH "YHWH" was I not known to them.

    Part of this verse have added English words (by name of) and the Hebrew YHWH is written once as LORD and later as JEHOVAH. Our scholars says this verse is easy to read? Really? The Hebrew word "shem" does not mean "name" but more along the idea of "character"..

    Could this verse say "Elohiym spoke to Moses as "He who exists" and appeared to Jacob in the character of "El Shadday", and in the character of "He who exists" I was known to them.

    So if "El Shadday" is just another Name for "YHWH" (as one theory of faith suggests)

    Ge 17:1 And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD "YHWH" appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God "Shadday El" ; walk before me, and be thou perfect.

    2 And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly.

    3 And Abram fell on his face: and God "Elohiym" talked with him, saying,

    So whose talking to Abram ? YHWH = Shadday El = Elohiym. Using that theory of faith, we have only Elohiym talking to Abram. What Jews believe, a single member of GOD. So how does Elohiym come down from heaven and speak to Abram without killing him with His presence ?

    Job 40:1 Moreover the LORD "YHWH" answered Job, and said,

    2 Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty "Shadday" instruct him?

    he that reproveth God "Eloah", let him answer it.

    So if YHWH = Shadday, why doesn't YHWH = Eloah as well?

    And we have reduced the persons within the Godhead to one, what Jews believe. Or if we assume Eloah is the Father, than reduced the Godhead to two members, what the Restitution Ministry believe.

    Quote: "A number of the texts in the Book of Job by way of clear synonymous parallels explicitly identify “Shadday” with God/Eloha, e.g. Job 8:5, 7; 11:7; 13:3. There is no way that the Hebrew in these parallels can be read as an argument for two different persons. "End Quote.

    So if YHWH = Shadday, and based on these numerous synonymous parallels of Scripture poetry that "Eloah = Shadday", we have reduced Scripture functional descriptors of GOD to one descriptor

    "YHWH = Shadday = Eloah = Elohiym = GOD"

    This is exactly what Jews say.

    Fair enough, so why is Scripture complicated with all these other descriptors if there is only a single member in the Godhead?

    Yes but scholars of Christian faith say in the NT three persons of the Godhead is clearly shown, but three persons of the Godhead in the OT is not clearly shown.

    Personally I feel the problem is with our reading of Scripture. So how did all those who died before the Cross ever have a clear understanding of GOD and His salvation?

    Quote: "Not even one single text out of the 46 occurrences identifies “Shadday” with the Holy Spirit. The “spirit” (ruach) of God is mentioned in Job 33:4, where it is in parallel with the “breath” (neshama) of “Shadday”, in other words, the “spirit (or “breath”) of El (or of Shadday). “Spirit” corresponds to “breath”, and “Shadday” corresponds to “El”. "End quote.

    Notice the claim these scholars make with this Hebrew poetry.

    "spirit" "ruwach" "el""God"
    “breath” (neshama) "Shadday" "Almighty"

    Job 33:4 The Spirit "Holy Spirit" "Ruwach" of God "El" hath made me,

    and the breath of the Almighty"Shadday" hath given me life.

    So if out of 46 occurances using "Shadday" not one identifies with the Holy Spirit, why does the scholar discuss this poetry line in Job, and completely ignore the verse's message?

    Let's have a look at poetry in Scripture...

    Ps 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.(KJV)

    lamp feet
    light path

    We call this in poetry as simile, not some scholarly term "synonymous parallels".

    So the WORD, is a simile of lamp unto my feet or a simile of a light unto my path.

    So the WORD shows you the way...

    Now let's try another poetry line:-

    Pr 1:8 My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother:

    instruction father
    torah teachings mother

    We have another simile saying, my son the instructions of your father is a simile of the torah teachings of your mother.

    So children should listen to both parents

    So children need the ten commandments and the Scripture teachings.

    Get the idea how poetry similes work. Let's keep reading our Scriptures simple with child like faith.

    But our scholars tell us using their scholarship that "instructions" parallel "torah teachings", (wait a minute, how many of us really believe the entire Scripture torah is a simile of the Ten Commandments?? well the Author does, see studies on torah ) and that "father" parallels "mother".

    But are our scholars saying a "father = mother" a designation of the same Person? as they did with Job 33:4 ?

    This Scripture poetry passage is speaking of "wisdom" as a simile in all this context. See studies of wisdom.

    Job 33:3 .. and my lips shall utter knowledge clearly.

    4 The Spirit of God hath made me, and the breath of the Almighty hath given me life.

    The people in Job's time knew things clearly, but somehow we don't. What we have here is a simile. The Breath of life that comes to us when GOD made us is a simile of the Breath of Salvation empowered by the Shadday, when GOD gives us His salvation.

    And this process is administrated by Beings here, the Holy Spirit is a simile of the Shadday.

    (3) "What functions does the Shadday do?"

    (a) Angel of mercy

    Let's show the reader what the Shadday does:-

    Ge 48:3 And Jacob said unto Joseph, God Almighty ( El Shadday) appeared unto me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and blessed me,

    The "El Shadday" appeared to Jacob and blessed him.

    Ge 48:16 The Angel ("messenger") which redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads; and let my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.

    Later in the passage, the "El Shadday" is seen as a "messenger" or an "angel". In the passage we may have the suggestion the "El Shadday" is a simile of an "angel of mercy" who blesses people.

    Now let's see what SOP says:

    "A terrible conflict is before us. We are nearing the battle of the great day of God Almighty (Shadday). That which has been held in control is to be let loose. The angel of mercy is folding her wings, preparing to step down from the throne and leave the world to the control of Satan. .--RH May 13, 1902. {LDE 250.1}

    Rev 16:14 ... the battle of that great day of God "Elohiym" Almighty "Shadday".(KJV

    The Scripture quoted is "shadday" and SOP terms the "Shadday" as the "angel of mercy", possibly a term coming from Genesis 48:16, where the Shadday appeared to Jacob in Gen 48:3.

    (b) Angel of destruction

    Isa 13:6 Howl ye; for the day of the LORD "YHWH" is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty "Shadday".

    Eze 1:24 And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the Almighty "Shadday", the voice of speech, as the noise of an host: when they stood, they let down their wings.

    Joe 1:15 Alas for the day! for the day of the LORD "YHWH" is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty "Shadday" shall it come.

    These verses tell us the "Shadday works with YHWH, as a ranked member with the host of YHWH's army, and can do destruction.

    Now let's see what SOP says:

    {DA 352.2} Their warfare is not to be waged against flesh and blood, but "against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places." Ephesians 6:12, R. V. They are to contend with supernatural forces, but they are assured of supernatural help. All the intelligences of heaven are in this army. And more than angels are in the ranks. The Holy Spirit, the representative of the Captain of the Lord's host, comes down to direct the battle.

    SOP says more than angels are ranked in the armies of heaven. The Holy Spirit is representative of Jesus's army, while Jesus is the Captain.

    (c) Administrator of visions

    Nu 24:4 He hath said, which heard the words of God "el" "Strong authority", which saw the vision of the Almighty "Shadday", falling into a trance, but having his eyes open:

    Here the Shadday administrates visions..

    So what does SOP say about this?

    {LS80 233.1} Then Thayer took a heavy, large quarto family Bible which was lying on the table, and seldom used, opened it, and laid it upon Sister Ellen while in vision, as she was then inclined backward against the wall in the corner of the room. Immediately after the Bible was laid upon her, she arose upon her feet, and walked into the middle of the room, with the Bible open in one hand, and lifted as high as she could reach, and with her eyes steadily looking upward, declared in a solemn manner, “The inspired testimony from God,” or words of the same import. While the Bible was thus extended in one hand, and her eyes looking upwards, and not on the Bible, she continued for a long time, to turn over the leaves with her other hand, and place her finger upon certain passages, and correctly repeat their words with a solemn voice.

    {LS 468.3} "In December, 1844, the Holy Spirit gave her a revelation of the second coming of Christ. In this vision of the future there was given a view of the glorious reward that awaits the redeemed and the terrible fate that will come to all who refuse to serve their Lord and Master.

    {LP 39.1} Following these events, the conversion of the Ethiopian eunuch under the preaching of Philip, the vision of Peter at Joppa, and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon Cornelius and his household, served to convince the apostles and leading brethren at Jerusalem, that God had granted to the Gentiles repentance unto life.

    We accepted the truth point by point, under the demonstration of the Holy Spirit . I would be taken off in vision, and explanations would be given me. I was given illustrations of heavenly things, and of the sanctuary, so that we were placed where light was shining on us in clear, distinct rays. {GW 302.3}

    O, how much we need genuine missionaries! How much we need men and women who will labor under the supervision of the Almighty, in the power of his Spirit! How much we need those who know that God has called them to his service! It is when the work goes hard, that living missionaries reveal by their courage and fortitude and their trust in God that they are led and taught by the Holy Spirit. {RH, September 27, 1906 par. 24}

    The only member of the Godhead who empowers visions clearly in Scripture is the "Shadday". Indirectly associated with visions, is the Holy Spirit, as Peter's vision in Acts 10:19.

    The only Scripture verse that makes the Holy Spirit's powers a simile of the Shadday's powers is Job 33:4.

    SOP confirms this conclusion with the term "Shadday" and "Holy Spirit" quoted in RH, September 27, 1906 par. 24

    (d) Medium or Shadow of GOD

    Ps 91:1 ¶ He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High (Father reference) shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty (Shadday).

    2 I will say of the LORD "YHWH", He is my refuge and my fortress: my God "Elohiym"; in him will I trust.

    Here are three functional descriptors of GOD "Elohiym" here again in the OT. Do we suppose as our Scholars say that "Eloah" = "Shadday" = "YHWH" = "Elohiym", reducing the Godhead to a single member? Or do we accept that the three functional descriptors of GOD have been in the OT all this time?

    A shadow is an effect caused by light, Personal Beings absorbing light while leaving records on the ground for us to see. This is a simile picture of the Shadday. How else can anyone endure the Father's light and not die, unless the shadow of the Shadday makes this possible. We see in the OT when YHWH came to believers, the Shadday did also, to allow believers not to perish with the encounter.

    So what in Scripture does a "shadow" reference mean?

  • Ge 19:8 shadow "tsel" of my roof
  • Ps 17:8 shadow "tsel" of thy wings "kanaph"

  • De 32:11 As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth "rachaph" over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings "kanaph", taketh them, beareth them on her wings "ebrah":

  • Ge 1:2 And the Spirit"ruwach" "Holy Spirit" of God "Elohiym" moved "rachaph" upon the face of the waters.

    "kapah" means "coverings" not "wings", "ebrah" means "feathered wings".

    "rachaph" means to flutter, the Holy Spirit functions like a fluttering wind, as a simile of a bird.

    So being in the secret place of the Father is a simile of being under the fluttering wind of the Shadday, the presence of the Father via the Holy Spirit.

    This presentation is not clear to the reader yet, but will be once SOP comes to clarify these Scripture passages.

    Ps 18:6 In my distress I called upon the LORD "YHWH", and cried unto my God "Elohiym": he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.

    7 Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth.

    8 There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it.

    9 He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet.

    10 And he rode upon a cherub "angel", and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings "rachaph" "coverings" of the wind "ruwach" "Holy Spirit".

    11 He made darkness his secret place;

    So dwelling in the secret place of the Most High,, can be a parallel to Psalms 18:6 - 11, where most symbols of poetry are explained. Therefore dwelling under the Shadow of the Shadday, is a simile of dwelling under the coverings of the Holy Spirit, which is a simile of being in the secret place of the Most High, our Father.

    What also are shadows about ? Darkness which is a simile of our sinning records. So being under the shadow of the Shadday is a good thing, because a covering from the Shadday reduces the light intensity from the Father, allows our shadows or sins to be covered, and prepares us to endure the Father's light in heaven.

    Now let's see what SOP says:

    DA.512.003 Let mothers come to Jesus with their perplexities. They will find grace sufficient to aid them in the management of their children. The gates are open for every mother who would lay her burdens at the Saviour's feet. He who said, "Suffer the little children to come unto Me, and forbid them not," still invites the mothers to lead up their little ones to be blessed by Him. Even the babe in its mother's arms may dwell as under the shadow of the Almighty through the faith of the praying mother. John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from his birth. If we will live in communion with God, we too may expect the divine Spirit to mold our little ones, even from their earliest moments.

    The SOP is very clear and convincing proof the "Shadday" is another name for the Holy Spirit. But also notice the Holy Spirit(Shadday) is an agency for the Father's power, hence SOP also includes this with the statement, "we live in communion with GOD".

    Now if this reading of SOP as a Hebrew English translator is true, showing us correct meaning of Hebrew, regardless of the "cloudy presentations" of Scripture with "poorly translated words" at times, then we can predict upon investigation that all her material if studied carefully with reveal that this is kind of investigation will prove true and consistent, and proof SOP is inspired.

    In other words as readers of SOP, we should ask the question, where does these words of English fit back into Scriptural Hebew? Thus we would find the lesser light is translating for us the greater light.

    For further studies see SOP & Shadday

    For further studies see SOP & Holy Spirit

    For further studies see Shadday

    For further studies see Holy Spirit

    On the next webpage, we consider SOP and the theme of "Eloah". This Hebrew word is supposed to "a Father God", or a "pagan father god". How hard or easy does Scripture and SOP confirm this?

    SOP & Shadday theme

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