Most High (Elyon)

“Most High” is a name of God found in the Old Testament in both Hebrew (using ‘Elyon) and Aramaic (using ‘Ilaya’). The words are related to each other in meaning. The word ‘elyon sometimes indicates the highest or uppermost of pairs or collections (Gen. 40:17; Deut. 26:19; Ps. 89:27). So, this is one of several names for God that state that He is supremely exalted.

Isaiah 14:14 tells how Satan aimed to be like the Most High (The Message Bible uses the title “King of the Universe”). Satan’s ambition was the ultimate in pride.

“Most High” is also a name for God in the New Testament and Jesus (Yeshua‘) is called the Son of the Most High in Luke 1:32. The Greek word hypsistos is the same one used to translate the Hebrew ‘Elyon in the Greek translation of the Old Testament. It is likely that the New Testament writers had the same Hebrew name of God in mind.

Similar Old Testament names for God are Most High God (or God Most High) and LORD Most High. All those similar names include the Hebrew ‘Elyon or the Aramaic ‘Ilaya’.

Picture of the name of God, Most High (Elyon), in the Hebrew text of Deuteronomy 32 v 8

Most High (Elyon) in the Hebrew text of Deuteronomy 32 v 8

Most High in Hebrew:

‘Elyon

Strong’s Concordance number: 5945b

Bible references: Num. 24:16; Deut. 32:8; 2 Sam. 22:14; Pss. 9:2; 18:13; 21:7; 46:4; 50:14; 73:11; 77:10; 78:17; 82:6; 83:18; 87:5; 91:1, 9; 92:1; 107:11; Isa. 14:14; Lam. 3:35, 38

Balaam began his blessing over Israel with the words:

The oracle of him who hears the words of God,
And knows the knowledge of the Most High,
Who sees the vision of the Almighty
[Shaddai],
Falling down, yet having his eyes uncovered.
(Numbers 24:16)

Most High in Aramaic:

‘Ilaya’

Strong’s Concordance number: 5943

Bible references: Dan. 4:17, 24, 25, 32, 34; 7:25

Picture of Most High (or Highest) in the Greek text of Mary's song in Luke 1:35

Most High (or Highest) in the Greek text of Luke 1:35

Most High in Greek:

Hypsistos

Strong’s Concordance number: 5310

New Testament references: Luke 1:35, 76; 6:35; Acts 7:48 (In the KJV God is called the Highest).

Love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. (Luke 6:35)

A similar name for God in the New Testament is “Most High God” (Acts 16:17; Heb. 7:1).

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