🔼The name Elihoreph: Summary
- God Of Autumn, God Of Reproach
- From (1) the word אל ('el), God, and (2) the verb חרף (harap), either to harvest or reproach.
🔼The name Elihoreph in the Bible
🔼Etymology of the name Elihoreph
The name Elihoreph consists of two elements, the first one being אל ('el), 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 second part of our name appears to derive from either of the roots חרף (harap):
The verb חרף (harap) means to pluck or gather and an identical verb means to taunt, which suggests that there might be just one verb that demonstrates that taunting someone with sharp remarks is rather the same thing as harvesting an orchard with sharp tools.
Noun חרף (horep) means a (fruit-)gathering or harvest. It's often used to indicate the harvest season as time of the year, corresponding to our early autumn. The denominative verb חרף (harap) means to spend the harvest time (much alike our verb "to winter").
Noun חרפה (herpa) means taunt or reproach, and the similarity with the previous is either an inconsequential coincidence or else suggests that whoever is doing the taunting is harvesting the person taunted.
For a meaning of the name Elihoreph, NOBSE Study Bible Name List reads God Of Autumn and BDB Theological Dictionary suggests Autumn God but adds the signature question mark to indicate that in the BDB universe nothing is ever wholly certain.
Jones' Dictionary of Old Testament Proper Names derives our name from the same root but gives it the more general swing of to reward, which seems a bit liberal. Jones translates our name with God Of The Reward.
Note that this name might just as well mean God Of Reproach or My God Is Reproach, perhaps indicating the kind of reproach followers of the Living God are often accustomed to.