🔼The name Eldaah: Summary
- God Has Called
- God Is Knowledge
- From (1) the word אל ('el), God, and (2) a verb that means to call.
- From (1) the word אל ('el), God, and (2) the verb ידע (yada'), to know.
🔼The name Eldaah in the Bible
🔼Etymology of the name Eldaah
The name Eldaah comes is a compilation of two elements. The first part is the Hebrew word אל (El), either the prominent Canaanite deity whose name became applied to the God of Israel, or the common abbreviation of Elohim, the genus God:
In names אל ('el) usually refers to אלהים ('elohim), that is Elohim, or God, also known as אלה ('eloah). In English, the words 'God' and 'god' exclusively refer to the deity but in Hebrew the words אל ('l) and אלה ('lh) are far more common and may express approach and negation, acts of wailing and pointing, and may even mean oak or terebinth.
The origin of the second part of the name Eldaah is unclear. Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names, NOBSE Study Bible Name List and BDB Theological Dictionary seem to know of a verb that none of them lists, but which is supposed to be similar to a certain Arabic verb that means to call.
Fuerst's Hebrew & Chaldee lexicon to the Old Testament and Klein's Etymological dictionary of the Hebrew Language relate to the noun דעה (dea), meaning knowledge, which comes from the verb ידע (yada'), meaning to know:
The verb ידע (yada') means both to know and to have intimate relations (Genesis 4:1, Judges 11:39). Knowledge equals familiarity with truth, which in turn is the only thing all people can agree on, which in turn promotes the search for agreement and modes of expression (rather than mere data). The Bible holds all knowledge in the highest regard. God, after all, is both a God of knowledge (Jeremiah 3:15) and love (1 John 4:7).
Since all truth relates to the Word of God, wisdom begins with the reverence of the Creator (Proverbs 1:7) and learning equals love-making within a marital relation with the Creator (Isaiah 54:5).
Nouns דעה (dea), דע (dea') and דעת (da'at) all mean knowledge. Nouns ידעני (yidde'oni), מודע (moda') and מדעת (moda'at) describe familiarity or kinship. This root's Greek counterpart is γινωσκω (ginosko).
What the original name giver meant to say with the name Eldaah (and in which language) is no longer clear. The sources referred to above, that link the name Eldaah to a mysterious verb that means to call, translate our name with God Has Called. But for a Hebrew audience, the name Eldaah would have meant Knowledge Of God, or, slightly more daring: God Is Knowledge.