January 2022 Newsletter – The Name of God is…?
The Name of God
I want to pose what I believe is one of the most important questions every man and woman who claims to believe in the God of the Bible should be able to answer for themselves.
Assuming our Creator God has a name… What is it and how should we pronounce His Name? In your own Bible, God the Father’s Name is inserted more than 6,800 times in the Old Testament alone. In many cases, the Father says clearly such things as, “… everyone will know my Name…” – and – “My Name is…”, so let’s investigate.
I’m 72 years old now, but until only a few years ago, I wasn’t sure how to answer this question for myself. I had taught Bible studies for years and for at least the previous 15 years I had believed God’s Name was Yaweh… pronounced Yaw-Way.
I am sure some of you reading this today have believed and may continue to believe the same. But there remains no real consensus of agreement on how to say God’s Name, even among those professing to be devout believers, whether Christians or Jews.
What the Christian and Jewish faiths have taught for more than 1,500 years has consistently expressed that God’s Name and how to pronounce it is “unknown”, lost long ago somehow, perhaps by God’s own intention. But the fact that the Father consistently used His Name and expressed His Name’s importance suggests a different possibility.
In the interest of keeping this as brief as possible, I share the following, which you can investigate for yourself as you feel led to do or not to do…
• Until a short time after the first copies of the Bible were printed in the English language, God’s Name was printed in most Bible editions as, “YHVH”.
• More than one Christian denomination 500 years ago preferred to not have the Name expressed this way, so YHVH was replaced with all CAPS, either as “LORD” or “the LORD” in all 6,800+ cases.
• While Jews had forbidden the use of God’s Name about 150 AD and since then preferred to express His Name as Hashem or Adonai; Christians over time simply accepted the story that the true pronunciation had been lost.
• Experts agreed that without the vowel points, (markings used to express the vowel sounds in the Hebrew text of the Bible), the correct pronunciation could not be known.
• But in recent years, ancient Hebrew texts, many on old scraps of parchment, some even coming from the Vatican in Rome, have been shown to agree on the pronunciation within thousands of these documents. Even many times in each of those individual documents, within the Hebrew text of “YHVH” the same vowel points were written… agreeing 100% of the time.
While there remain, on the one hand many skeptics, refusing to acknowledge this exciting news for what it is – EXCITING NEWS – there are linguistic experts who want to shout this news from the rooftops.
I happen to be one who does want to express this exciting news to anyone willing to listen, because I had been wondering for years how any of us believers could pray to God without using the Name that He chose to use thousands of times in the book of instructions and history He gave us to read, to learn from and to live our lives by.
God’s own Son, our Messiah Yeshua said repeatedly that He, “came in His Father’s Name” 2,000 years ago. It seems unlikely that Yeshua and all of the apostles, when stating many times, whether praying for the sick or quoting Bible verses, “… in the Name of the LORD”, failed to pronouncing His Name correctly, as Hebrews had pronounced it since at least the time of the Exodus from Egypt.
Somewhere between then and now, probably by the influence of our common enemy, Satan, this unfortunate loss of information occurred. But today we have the truth available to us if we can only accept it and believe it. What does the Father have to say about His Name… about His Name’s importance?
Read for yourself, in Jeremiah 16, wherein the last verse, God says, “… they shall know that My name is YHVH.” Also read in Exodus 3 when Moses had the conversation with the Father regarding what Name he should tell the people sent him… “… ‘YHVH God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you. This is My name forever.”
My name is “Michael”, but would I tell someone my name by spelling out each letter, or would I pronounce it with the appropriate vowel sounds? I think the answer is obvious and irrefutable. God surely pronounced His own Name each and every time He expressed His Name, whether through His prophets, His own Son Yeshua or the apostles.
We will be discussing much more about this in the near future here on TOT’s website and perhaps in the Newsletter. But here is that EXCITING NEWS…
The vowel sounds written consistently in all of those old Hebrew manuscripts recently discovered and translated by experts are – “e” – “o” – “a”. According to the very best information I can share with you today, God’s Name should be properly pronounced as – YeHoVaH – so that it sounds like, “Ye” as in yes – “Ho” as in hope – “Va” as in vaw… with the emphasis on the last syllable. I write it in English as “YeHoVaH”, with the vowels not capitalized, to indicate how it should be pronounced.
Pray in the Name of YeHoVaH and be blessed by His Name! Psalm 129:8, “The blessing of YeHoVaH be upon you; We bless you in the Name of YeHoVaH!”