Studying from Kay Arthur's, Lord I Want to Know You and Ann Spangler's, Praying the Names of God.
The Name Adonai, or Adonay is first used in Genesis 15:2. When Abram first speaks to God about not having an heir, he refers to God as Adonai. Adonai appear in the bible as Lord, not to be confused with LORD which we will discuss next week. The definition of Lord is Master. Adon describes the one who occupies the position of master over a slave or servant. When applied to God it signifies His position as the One who is Master over His people, with full authority to reward and punish. In the form of Adonai, the word means Lord par exellence or Lord over all.
One thing that strikes me is that Lord is probably the most widely used term used by Christians to refer to God. I have to wonder how many of us know, consider, and take seriously what we are actually saying when using Lord in prayer and conversation. The bible says we should not misuse the name of the LORD, which says that God takes it seriously.
"You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name." Exodus 20:7
Even though this uses the Name LORD, we need to apply the heart of the command that God's Name is to be held in honor and used appropriately in every form. When God commissioned Moses to go to Pharoah, Moses really didn't want to go. This is how part of the conversation went.
Moses said to the LORD, "O Lord (Adonai), I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue." The LORD said to him, "Who gave man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? Is it not I, the LORD ? Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say." But Moses said, "O Lord (Adonai), please send someone else to do it." Then the LORD's anger burned against Moses... Exodus 4:10:14 (emphasis mine)
I have often wondered why God was so angry with Moses when there are other's in the bible who appeared to be pointing out to God how inadequate they were for what God was calling them to do. Moses was calling God Adonai, Lord, Master, but was not responding to God's direction as a true servant. Moses was misusing the Name Adonai.
A servant is owned by his master and has no claim at all on his own life. His position states his purpose for life, to do his master's will 100% of the time. He is not merely an employee who clocks out at the end of the day and goes home to live out his own life as he pleases, he is at the service and direction of his master all the time. He is also completely dependent on his master for all things.
The master has the responsibility of taking care of his servant's every need including food, clothing, shelter, and protection. It is also the master's responsibilty to equip his servant for whatever task he is required to carry out. A master doesn't require a servant to cook a meal without providing the food, or make a purchase without providing the funds for it. He must supply what is necessary to carry out his directives.
How does Adonai apply to or impact my life?
My heart is with Kay's on this. Jesus can't be your Savior until He is your Lord. (Master, Owner, Ruler, Commanding Officer) When we give our lives to Christ, we are not simply accepting salvation, we are handing over Lordship of our lives to Jesus Christ. This is what it means to follow Christ. If God is really our Adonai, then our thoughts and actions should always be on serving our Master and trusting Him to take care of all our needs.
Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you. Matthew 6:33
Anyone who wants to be my disciple must follow me, because my servants must be where I am. And the Father will honor anyone who serves me. John 12:26
How does the Name Adonai impact your life?
"A girl needs to be so lost in God, that the guy is going to have to seek HIM to find her!" ...Maya Angelou