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Order of Titles/Names of God


Rabbi Ari Shvat

Shevat 29, 5782
I noticed that within the Tenach that the term אלהים (Elohim) always seems to follow the Tetragrammaton of the four-letter Hebrew word יהוה. It never seems to appear the other way around (except Psalm 68:27 and when it reads אל אלהים יהוה, see Psalm 50:1 or Joshua 22:22). Yet when we look at the word אדני it is often followed by the Tentragammon (with the exception of Psalm 109:21, 140:8, 141:8 and Habakkuk 3:19). So when these words follow each other directly in a sentence, why is the order always as I described? I.e. why יי אלהים and not אלהים יי, and why אדני יי and not יי אדני? There is probably a very simple grammatical explanation for it, but I was hoping you could share your insight on why it is written this way; in these orders.
The Name of God (4 letters) refers to "Midat HaRachamim", the trait of mercy, as opposed to Elohim which literally means: Judge and is used for "Midat HaDin". We prefer that God place His Mercy towards us before (!) He judges us, to use His mercy before His justice.
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