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El Shaddai, The God Who Is More Than Enough

El Shaddai, The God Who Is More Than Enough

Spiritual warfare is both real and perpetual.  The evil one is either waging battle to prevent unbelievers from coming to salvation and to receiving eternal life or he seeks to render believers disobedient, ineffectual, or undisciplined, thereby, failing to achieve God’s great goal for them, that is, “To glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.”

I can still picture Mr. Sells, our Old Testament professor at Columbia Bible College holding up one hand and shouting in his booming voice, “El Shaddai, the God Who is more than enough!”  He taught Survey of the Old Testament, and we were studying the names of God.  Despite the fact that it was a survey course, he pressed us to study the Old Testament in depth and to glean principles for everyday life, as well as to learn facts and history.  I doubt that any student who passed through that class will ever forget the name, “El Shaddai.”

The common translations of El Shaddai throughout the Old Testament are Almighty God, God Almighty, or the Almighty.  El Shaddai also carries the meaning of sufficient, hence, “The God Who is more than enough!”  If we think long enough on the subject of God’s sufficiency and the fact that He is Almighty, we can derive a limitless source of comfort, encouragement, and satisfaction.

When I first came to Christ as my personal savior, I knew an elderly 90-year old Christian woman.  Mrs. Kirkpatrick taught Bible to the women of the inner-city church where I grew up.  I remember her saying often, “Satan is mighty, but God is almighty.”  This dear lady was keenly aware of the spiritual battle being waged.  She was not ignorant or unaware of Satan’s power; however, she focused on the fact that God is more powerful and He is sufficient for any trial or battle.  We cannot afford to underestimate the power of the Christian’s archenemy.

A. W. Tozer wrote, “A right conception of God is basic, not only to systematic theology but to practical Christian living as well. It is my opinion that the Christian conception of God current in the middle years of the twentieth century is so decadent as to be utterly beneath the dignity of the most high God and actually to constitute for professed believers something amounting to moral calamity.” If Tozer is right, and he was a unique, prophetic man of God, we are in serious trouble.

It is rare that spiritual battle is mentioned today.  One of the few times we hear it referred to is when there is serious illness.  Perhaps we’re too sophisticated and don’t want to draw criticism for conjuring up images of warfare.  We may prefer the respectability gained by being just plain, “normal” folks.  If this is true, then we have one fine indicator of just how mighty Satan is—mighty enough to lull us into spiritual complacency, and for some—spiritual death.

Spiritual warfare is both real and perpetual.  The evil one is either waging battle to prevent unbelievers from coming to salvation and to receiving eternal life or he seeks to render believers disobedient, ineffectual, or undisciplined, thereby, failing to achieve God’s great goal for them, that is, “To glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.”

It’s up to us to recognize the danger we face daily and unrelentingly.  The spiritual battle might be on an individual basis.  No matter who we are, “El Shaddai” is on our side.  However, the battle also faces us as a corporate body, especially at this time in history—when the culture around us becomes more paganistic—the evil one will seek to take advantage to discourage, and divide the children of God.  But God Almighty, our all-sufficient God, is the same and has not changed.  He is with us and for us.

Let’s focus on “El Shaddai, the God Who is more than enough,” to be our arm and strength in these days.  Let’s not forget that Satan is mighty, but our God, “El Shaddai,” is Almighty!  Let’s join those who sing the song, “El Shaddai, age to age You are the same by the power of the Name.”  Let’s praise Him forever.

Helen Louise Herndon is a member of Central Presbyterian Church (EPC) in St. Louis, Missouri. She is freelance writer and served as a missionary to the Arab/Muslim world in France and North Africa.

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