Here’s a chart showing the most common names for God in the Bible and how frequently they occur in different books.
Here’s a static version of part of the image to give you an idea what it looks like if you don’t have Flash. Click the image for a larger version.
Many Eyes, the social data-visualization site, just came out with a “Matrix Chart” that’s great for showing small multiples (whose Wikipedia article could use some embellishment), like the data contained in the above chart. Even better, the Matrix Chart uses Flash, so you can embed the chart on your blog and don’t need to have Java installed (unlike the other visualizations on Many Eyes).
Since the chart type is so new, we ran into a couple of bugs. It wouldn’t let us use the longer category names in the list below. And we had to delve into the HTML code to embed the chart on our blog. It would be great if the “blog this” button gave you the embedding code.
The chart combines the Old and New Testaments, which use different words for God and Lord. The OT YHWH and the NT kyrios aren’t always perfect analogs, but we’ve combined them here (under “LORD”) for simplicity. The NT, especially in the epistles, applies the term kyrios to Jesus many times, providing strong evidence for his divinity.
Here are the main words encompassed in each category:
- LORD (OT: YHWH, NT: kyrios)
- God (OT: elohim, NT: theos)
- Lord (adonai)
- Lord GOD (adonai together with YHWH)