The Bible is full of name-calling! Take a look at Psalms to learn nicknames for God, which give us a clearer picture of God – and of ourselves as His image and likeness.

By Caryl W. Krueger

Categories: Family, Psalms

Is there a lot of name-calling at your house? Sometimes name-calling is fine, such as "Sweetie," but other times it's demeaning, such as "dummy." Name-calling isn't new. In fact, the Bible is full of it and that's something that can be enjoyable education for your youngsters.

Just in the book of Psalms, there are at least a dozen instances where God is given another name. Using the Bible, you can learn how these other names can enhance a child's life, since, as children of God, we reflect His names and nature. You can use any version of the Bible; you will find these from the King James version.

Give kids the reference in Psalms, and let them find the other name for God. Then discuss how this new aspect can be used.

  • Psalm 23: 1
    • This is easy, the name is "shepherd."
    • What does a shepherd do for his flock?
    • What does God do for us?
  • Psalm 1:6
    • Lord.
    • This is a common Old Testament name for God.
    • One definition is "one in charge."
    • What is God in charge of in our lives?
  • Psalm 17:7
    • This is not as clear as others, but the verse shows God as a protector when others threaten.
    • The phrase "savest by thy right hand" refers to the work of a warrior.
    • When do we want our protector to save us?
  • Psalm 28:7
    • Shield.
    • This continues the previous theme by naming God as our strength and shield.
    • It suggests that we be grateful for God's protection.
  • Psalm 31:3
    • Rock and Fortress.
    • We are on solid ground, the rock, when we listen to God's direction.
    • And we are safe with him, the Fortress.
    • In olden times, a fortress was a walled city where people went to be protected from enemies.
    • So God as our Rock and Fortress keeps us safe in times of danger. (Also see Psalm 71:3)
  • Psalm 38
    • The word Archer is not specifically used, but that is the picture here.
    • Archers laid snares and also drove their prey into the open, but God, as the great Archer, saves us.
    • Just read verse 12 since it will open a discussion of today's snares.
  • Psalm 61:3
    • Shelter and Tower.
    • Even when the walls of a city were breached, the inhabitants found safety in the towers.
    • God as our Tower can be a place above the problems of the day - a place of calm, uplifted thought.
    • Where and when can we go to our tower?
  • Psalm 89: 8,18
    • Lord God of Hosts, king.
    • In verse 11, it alludes to God as creator.
    • Surely such a powerful God can take care of us.
    • If God is king, we are the princes and princesses of His realm.
  • Psalm 103: 13
    • Father.
    • God as our Father (and Mother) cares for us so deeply that He will provide all that is needed to those who love Him.
    • How do we show our love of God? How often should we show our love?

Now with all these names for God, names that show how much He cares for us, we are entitled to a new name, too. Let each youngster consider a new Godlike name for himself. Maybe it will be victor, leader, warrior, princess, or beloved. See if they can remember their names the next day.