The Usage of Divine Names
Since I was a youth I have often wondered why the most common English translations of the scriptures have chosen to not represent the names of the Father and the Son as they originally occurred in the Hebrew and Greek, but instead they replaced the names of deity with titles that are not names at all. At one time when I was yet a very young man I began to go through my Bible and replace each occurrence of “the LORD,” “the Lord,” “God,” “the Lord God,” and other such renderings with the actual divine names and titles that occurred in the ancient manuscripts. This proved to be a daunting task since the name “Yahweh” alone occurs over 6,800 times in the Old Testament.
For various reasons the translators down through the years have chosen to render the divine names as something other than that which is accurate and original. One reason is due to a misapplication of the third commandment that Moses brought down on the stone tablets from Mount Sinai. The commandment I refer to is the one which instructs the followers of Yahweh to not use His name in a vain manner. The command is often rendered in the following fashion in popular translations.
“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.”
You will note the uppercase spelling of the word LORD in this verse. If you were to read the translators’ notes for this Bible version, and many others, you would find that the translators chose to replace the name Yahweh with the title LORD everywhere that it occurs. Additionally, the word God is a translation of the word Elohim, which denotes a divine being. This verse could be more authentically rendered in the following manner.
You shall not lift up or bear the name of Yahweh your Elohim falsely, deceptively, or in vain, for Yahweh will not regard him as guiltless who lifts up or bears His name in a false, deceptive, or vain manner.
The Hebrew word that is often rendered as in vain is translated as false just a few verses later in the commandment “Thou shalt not bear false witness,” so one can readily see that the Hebrew word holds different shades of meaning. The Elohim of Israel whose name is Yahweh was declaring that His name was not to be used indiscriminately. The name Yahweh was to be used with great integrity.
It was the practice of Jewish scribes, when making copies of the scriptures, to not write out the name Yahweh when it occurred in the text, for they misconstrued the above commandment to mean that Yahweh’s name should not ever be written or uttered, for it was a holy name. Indeed it is a holy name, but Yahweh never commanded that it should not be written or uttered. He commanded that it should not be used in a false, deceptive, or vain way.
For example, today when men give oaths they often swear on the Bible, or they swear by God. They are saying that as God and His word are true, so is their word true. If a man were to swear by the name of Yahweh this would be a similar binding oath. However, if the man really did not mean what he was saying, he would be using the name of Yahweh falsely.
Another very common and appropriate application of this command has to do with speaking forth things, and claiming the words which are spoken are of divine origin. Throughout the Old Testament we find that there were often myriads of false prophets of Yahweh for every true prophet. When a man proclaims himself to be speaking the words of Yahweh, he should make very certain that his words are indeed Yahweh’s words. The punishment for prophesying falsely in the name of Yahweh was that the prophet was to be stoned.
Was it such a great issue that a man should speak something that was untrue? We know that Yahweh also forbid lying, but we are not told that liars were to be stoned. False prophets were to be stoned because they went beyond lying and they used Yahweh’s name in a false manner. They ascribed something to Yahweh that He did not say or command to be spoken. This was a most serious violation and it touches on the commandment regarding how men are to use Yahweh’s name.
The intent of the commandment regarding Yahweh’s name is that His name is to be used faithfully, honestly, and with good purpose. It is not to be used falsely, deceptively, or in a vain or trivial way. Unfortunately, many translators even today have a false understanding of this command and it is the practice to not write out the name of Yahweh at all. Yet we are plainly told in scriptures that man was given this name as the name by which Yahweh was to remembered throughout all generations.
And Elohim, furthermore, said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘Yahweh, the Elohim of your fathers, the Elohim of Abraham, the Elohim of Isaac, and the Elohim of Jacob, has sent me to you.’ This is My name forever, and this is My memorial-name to all generations.”
The name Yahweh is often also rendered in a shortened version as Yah. It occurs in this form 49 times in the Old Testament. As one realizes this they can see that it was not the practice of the most ancient Hebrews to avoid usage of the names Yah and Yahweh, for many of them had His name as part of their own. Elijah is Eliyah, his name meaning mighty Yah. Jeremiah is Jeremiyah, his name meaning Yah will rise. Joshua is Yahshua, his name meaning Yah’s salvation. There are many more instances of Israelites who had Yah’s name as part of their own. Clearly, they had no understanding that His name was not to be uttered.
As one looks at the root of the word hallelujah it is further evidence that there was no prohibition in using His name. The word hallelujah is hallelu-yah. (The J in old English was pronounced as a Y, and only in recent years has the pronunciation changed, but not when this word is pronounced.) The word hallelujah is of Hebrew origin and it means praise Yah.
The name Jehovah is an incorrect way of rendering the name Yahweh. In a misguided attempt to preserve the holiness of the divine name, the Hebrew scribes would place letters from the word Adonai above every occurrence of the name Yahweh. This reminded those reading the scriptures to not speak the name of Yahweh, but rather to speak the word Adonai, which simply means Lord. Translators, not understanding what the scribes had done, combined the words Yahweh and Adonai and came up with Jehovah. Recent discoveries have revealed what was actually done, and a correction has been made.
It is very unfortunate that the divine names have been so obscured and hidden. Yahweh has been given as the Father’s memorial name to all generations, yet through error and tradition the name is seldom heard among the saints today. Other names have also lost much through poor renderings, and the link between Old and New Testaments has in many ways been obscured.
The general of Israel, Joshua (Yahshua), is a type of Yahshua (Jesus) who is to lead His people into the promised rest of Yahweh. The name Yahshua means Yah’s salvation, and it was an appropriate name for both the Son of Yahweh and the general and leader of Israel. We actually see the name of the Savior revealed in the names of the two great prophets Elijah (Eli-yah) and Elisha (Eli-shua).
Many today are coming back to an understanding of the divine names, and they are once more beginning to use them. Of those who do, some have adopted very narrow views concerning the manner in which divine persons are to be addressed or referenced, and they condemn those who still use titles for divinity such as Lord or God. In many instances, however, these titles are quite appropriate.
The title God is the English equivalent of the Hebrew Elohim. Both words denote divinity and even as Elohim was used to refer to false elohims (Exodus 12:12, Jeremiah 43:12, etc.), as well as the true Elohim of Israel, so is the word god used to refer to false gods as well as the true God.
Similarly, Lord is an appropriate title that many use for both the Father and the Son. When one discerns the etymology, the word origin, of the title Lord, it seems especially appropriate as a designation of the Son of Yahweh. The word Lord is synonymous with the word Master and it is derived from the Old English word hlááford which literally means bread (loaf)-ward. It was a reference to the head of a household. The servants in the house were entitled to be fed by the master, or loaf-ward of the house.
Yahshua is certainly the one who is the master of His household, and He gives bread to those who are servants in His household. Examine the following scripture.
Yahshua therefore said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world.” They said therefore to Him, “Lord, evermore give us this bread.” Yahshua said to them, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.”
Let me rewrite verse 34 and it becomes very illuminating. “They said therefore to Him, ‘Loaf-ward, evermore give us this bread.’” Yahshua in turn, as the Loaf-ward (Lord), gave them His flesh as their bread.
And while they were eating, He took some bread, and after a blessing He broke it and gave it to them, and said, “Take it, this is My body.”
There are certain groups today that assert that the title Lord should never be linked to the Father or the Son, for the word Baal found often in the Old Testament is commonly interpreted as lord. Oftentimes these groups will replace the word Lord with the word Master wherever it is indicated in scripture, but in truth Baal could just as easily be translated into English as Master, and it sometimes is, so there is very little point in this.
In my study of scripture I have found occurrences where the word baal is used descriptively of Yahweh. Many recoil at this because Baal is quite often the name or title ascribed to false gods in the Old Testament, and those who worshiped Baal or who were prophets of Baal came under the judgment of Yahweh. One must realize that a single word in almost any language can be used with multiple applications. This is certainly the case with the ancient Hebrew language. For example, consider the usage of the word “baal” in the following verse.
‘Return, O faithless sons,’ declares Yahweh; ‘For I am a master [baal] to you, and I will take you one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion.’
The word for master in this verse is baal, and it is the same word that is used throughout scripture to refer to many of the false deities of the nations that surrounded Israel in ancient days. In this verse Yahweh is calling Himself a baal (master) to those sons whom He brings forth from Israel to bring them to Zion. The word bears no negative connotations in this usage. This word is listed as Strong’s number 1167. If you were to do a search on the word Baal you would find that it is Strong’s word 1168 and it bears this note, “the same as 1167.”
There are many groups today that have detected the error of the translators in replacing the divine names of God. Some of these groups even publish their own Bible translations. Many have gone overboard, however, in rejecting titles that have a legitimate place in scripture. The title Lord is one such example.
Whereas it is quite acceptable to use titles to refer to deity, there is little doubt that there is great error in substituting the names of Yahweh with titles in every instance throughout the scriptures. In this way many have forgotten the name of Yahweh. This should not have happened, since His name is recorded over 6,800 times in the Old Testament. Where the name Yahweh is found in scripture, it should be recorded faithfully, without substitution.
What justification do the translators of the most common English Bibles give for replacing the Divine name of Yahweh with a titular substitute? Following is the explanation found in the New American Standard Bible put out by the Lockman Foundation.
The Proper Names of God in the Old Testament:In the scriptures, the name of God is most significant and understandably so. It is inconceivable to think of spiritual matters without a proper designation for the Supreme Deity. Thus the most common name for the deity is God, a translation of the original Elohim. One of the titles for God is Lord, a translation of Adonai. There is yet another name which is particularly assigned to God as His special or proper name, that is, the four letters YHWH (Exodus 3:14 and Isaiah 42:8). This name has not been pronounced by the Jews because of reverence for the great sacredness of the divine name. Therefore, it has been consistently translated Lord. The only exception to this translation of YHWH is when it occurs in immediate proximity to the word Lord, that is, Adonai. In that case it is regularly translated God in order to avoid confusion.
It is known for many years YHWH has been transliterated as Yahweh, however no complete certainty attaches to this pronunciation.
(NASB © 1985 Holman Bible Publishers)
As I look at this explanation I find some very distinct problems. The publishers admit that “the name of God is most significant and understandably so,” yet they go on to state that they have removed His “special or proper name” in every occurrence throughout the Old Testament, without exception. Furthermore, they state that “the most common name for deity is God,” yet God is not a name at all, it is a title denoting a divine being and it can be equally ascribed to false divinity as well as that which is true. They have even stated that God is a translation of Elohim. Elohim is never given as the proper name of Yahweh in scripture. Elohim is a title that refers to a divine being and in the following passage we can see that it was not exclusively used as a reference to Yahweh.
‘For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the first-born in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the elohim of Egypt I will execute judgments– I am Yahweh.’
The translators are clearly wrong in stating that “the most common name for deity is God.” They would have been closer to the truth in saying “the most common title for deity is God.” Anytime the writers of scripture wanted to declare who their Elohim was they gave His “special or proper name” Yahweh. They did this with amazing consistency so that Yahweh occurs 6,828 times in the Old Testament with Yah occurring an additional 49 times. Yet for all this, the translators have chosen to totally remove the names Yahweh and Yah from scripture and they have based it solely upon the following argument: “This name has not been pronounced by the Jews because of reverence for the great sacredness of the divine name. Therefore, it has been consistently translated Lord.”
Did the translators give some divine commandment as their authority for removing Yahweh’s name from scripture? No! They based this very profound decision totally upon the tradition of the Jews. It was these same Jews to whom Yahshua spoke the following:
And He [Yahshua] said to them, “Rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, ‘This people honors Me with their lips, but their heart is far away from me. But in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the precepts of men.’ Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.” He was also saying to them, “You nicely set aside the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition.”
What is the commandment of Yahweh concerning the usage of His name? We are not left without understanding.
And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the Children of Israel, Yahweh God of your fathers … hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.
“If you are not careful to observe all the words of this law which are written in this book, to fear this honored and awesome name, Yahweh your God, then Yahweh will bring extraordinary plagues on you and your descendants, even severe and lasting plagues, and miserable and chronic sicknesses. And He will bring back on you all the diseases of Egypt of which you were afraid, and they shall cling to you.”
I Chronicles 17:24
“And let Thy name be established and magnified forever, saying, ‘Yahweh of hosts is the God of Israel, even a God to Israel; and the house of David Thy servant is established before Thee.’”
Ascribe to Yahweh the glory due to His name; worship Yahweh in holy array.
May his name endure forever; may his name increase as long as the sun shines and let men bless themselves by him; let all nations call him blessed. Blessed be Yahweh God, the God of Israel, who alone works wonders. And blessed be His glorious name forever; and may the whole earth be filled with His glory. Amen, and Amen.
Fill their faces with shame, that they may seek Your name, O Yahweh. Let them be confounded and dismayed forever; yes, let them be put to shame and perish, that they may know that You, whose name alone is Yahweh, are the Most High over all the earth.
Oh, give thanks to Yahweh! Call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples! Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him; talk of all His wondrous works! Glory in His holy name; let the hearts of those rejoice who seek Yahweh!
From the rising of the sun to its going down Yahweh’s name is to be praised.
Even Yahweh, the God of hosts; Yahweh is His name.
“And I will bring the third part through the fire, refine them as silver is refined, and test them as gold is tested. They will call on My name, and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are My people,’ and they will say, ‘Yahweh is my God.'”
These are but a few of the many thousands of instances in which the name Yahweh is mentioned throughout scripture. We are told that this is His memorial name. This name is to be praised. This is the name His people are to call upon. We are to ascribe to Yahweh the glory due His name. We are to give thanks to Yahweh in this name. We are to proclaim this name and honor and fear His name. This is the name that is to endure forever.
What a tragedy has occurred in removing the revealed name of God from scripture. The name Yahweh has been totally removed. It brings one to consider Jeremiah’s words:
Is there anything in the hearts of the prophets who prophesy falsehood, even these prophets of the deception of their own heart, who intend to make My people forget My name by their dreams which they relate to one another, just as their fathers forgot My name…
Truly, Christianity today has forgotten the name of Yahweh. Most only know Him by titles and by the substitutions the translators have placed in the scriptures that are used throughout Christendom.
It has not just been the NASB publishers that have followed this pattern of removing the name of Yahweh from scripture. All of the most popular English translations have done the same. Their reasoning is no more righteous, for they have not based their decision upon the commandment of Yahweh, but upon the traditions of men.
For two reasons the Committee has returned to the more familiar usage [of substituting YHWH with either the LORD or GOD] of the King James Version: (1) the word ‘Jehovah’ does not accurately represent any form of the name ever used in Hebrew; and (2) the use of any proper name for the one and only God … was discontinued in Judaism before the Christian era and is entirely inappropriate for the universal faith of the Christian Church.
(Revised Standard Version)
What a bold declaration, “the use of any proper name for the one and only God… was discontinued in Judaism before the Christian era and is entirely inappropriate for the universal faith of the Christian Church.” Where is the scripture to justify such a statement? Where is any explanation other than that the Jews through their traditions, not by commandment from Yahweh, quit using His name? How can they so brazenly assert that it is “entirely inappropriate” to use the name Yahweh? If the Holy Spirit inspired the scriptures and chose to have the name recorded nearly seven thousand times, how can man declare that it is inappropriate to use the name?
The NIV Study Bible merely gives the following statement regarding their practice of name substitution:
In regard to the divine name YHWH, commonly referred to as the tetragrammaton, the translators adopted the device used in most English versions of rendering that name as “LORD” in capital letters to distinguish it from Adonai, another Hebrew word rendered “Lord,” for which small letters are used.
(NIV Study Bible © 1985 by The Zondervan Corporation)
A similar statement is made by the translators of the New Living Translation:
We have rendered the tetragrammaton (YHWH) consistently as “the LORD,” utilizing a form with small capital letters that is common among English translations.
(New Living Translation © 1996 by Tyndale House Charitable Trust)
Again, there is no divine command cited to justify this practice. It is merely stated that “the device used in most English versions” has been followed. When one undertakes such an important labor as producing a copy of the holy scriptures to be read by millions of people, one should approach the labor with the greatest of integrity seeking to walk in strict obedience to the revealed mind of the Father. Making profound decisions that result in altering the scriptures just because other men have done so is no justification at all. It is the height of audacity to then turn around and say that using the divine name, as recorded by holy men and prophets at the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, is totally inappropriate for the universal Christian faith. What is truly totally inappropriate is making wholesale changes to the scriptures and basing such decisions on tradition and the devices of men.
It is not wrong to refer to divinity by titles, but we should not forget the true names of the One to whom we refer. The disciple Thomas certainly knew the Messiah by His Hebrew name Yahshua, but he also called Him, “my Lord and my God” (John 20:28).
In the Old Testament the name Yahweh was very frequently used, but Yahweh was also referred to by the titles El, Elohim, and Adonai. Yahweh gave no prohibition against referring to Him with a title, but certainly it is inappropriate to replace His name in every instance throughout scriptures with titles, thus obscuring His name to multitudes as do the publishers of many of the most common Bible translations today. Knowing someone’s name is a mark of intimacy and those who are members of the Kingdom of God should know the name of the God they serve.
As we enter into the seventh millennium, the Sabbath day of creation, Yahweh will call forth a Bride for His Son. The Bride is to know the Bridegroom, and the Father of the Bridegroom, intimately. It would be very fitting that this Bride should come once again into an understanding of the divine names. One of the most intimate encounters between Yahshua and His elect regards the knowing of the name He gives to them. This is a sign of the greatest intimacy. We find this recorded in Revelation.
‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.’
The sharing of this private name is a mark of great friendship. Some will be given a name that is only known by themselves and Elohim, the Godhead. It is a special token denoting some facet of their relationship with God. On the other end of the spectrum, our Messiah will say to those who have never known Him intimately, “Depart from Me, I never knew you” (Matthew 7:23).
It is my conviction that the Father would have me to refer to Him often by His name, as well as using the name Yahshua when referring to the Messiah, rather than Jesus, for Yahshua conveys a greater understanding of the relationship between Yahweh and His Son. Yahshua literally means Yah’s Salvation, and this He is. The name Jesus is an English rendering of a Latinized Greek translation of the Hebrew name Yahshua. The Hebrew Yahshua has been altered as it has been changed into Greek, then Latin, and later into English. As the name has been altered it has come to lack any resemblance to the name Yahweh to which it is linked, and its meaning has been obscured.
From my studies I have come to the conclusion that Jesus holds the same meaning as Yahshua if one understands ancient Greek and Latin, but few do today. One can determine that Yah’s Salvation is the meaning of the name of the Son of God by examining the following scripture.
“And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus [Iesous (ee-ay-sooce – Strong’s 2424)], for it is He who will save [soosei Strong’s 4982 – to save] His people from their sins.”
I am not a great scholar of ancient languages and history, and I am much at the mercy of other’s research when trying to ascertain the history of certain facts or name origins. What I have found in my searching is that one form of Yah in the Greek language was Iah, (pronounced Ee-yah). Furthermore, the word for “save” in Greek is “soosei.” Combining these two words could very well lead to the Latinized Greek name Iesous (pronounced ee-ay-sooce) from which we get Jesus.
Many are asserting today that the sus in the name Jesus is actually a rendering of the name Zeus, or that Jesus is a form of the name Isis or some other pagan god, but I have been unable to substantiate these allegations. The argument of some states that, in an attempt to make Christianity more appealing to the people of the Roman Empire, a pagan name was given to the Messiah. It seems likely, however, that if this had been the case that there would have been a wide outcry among the saints, and this very egregious error would have been well documented. I have found nothing in the writings of the early church leaders to indicate that this did in fact take place. It seems more plausible that Iesous was a legitimate translation of the Hebrew name Yahshua and that to the people of the Roman Empire it would have held a similar meaning of Yah’s Salvation (you shall call His name Iesous for He will soosei His people from their sins).
Believing that the name Jesus is derived from the name of a pagan deity seems dubious, but there are reasons that I prefer to use the name Yahshua. Knowing that in Hebrew the Messiah was called Yahshua, and knowing that there is great significance in His name, I desire that these things should be recognized. When bringing forth English translations of the scriptures, there is no reason to preserve Latinized Greek renderings of words that were originally Hebrew. It is much more accurate to go back to the Hebrew and make a translation from there.
Why should we place greater emphasis on the name the citizens of the Roman Empire used when speaking of Messiah, than the name He was actually known by among His family, disciples, and others who knew Him and met Him? Yahshua said that the Father had sent Him to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, not to the Gentile nations (Matthew 15:24), so He would have been known His whole life by His Hebrew name. The Messiah was born of the Hebrew people and His Hebraic roots should not be obscured, but rather clarified.
As I have looked at the scriptures, it is certain that Yahshua was never known to those He walked among by the name Jesus. There is no letter J in the Hebrew language. There was not such a letter in ancient times, nor is there today. Strong’s Greek and Hebrew Dictionary states that the Latinized Greek name Iesous, from which we get Jesus, was derived from the Hebrew name that we know as Joshua. The leader of Israel who took the people into their promised land was indeed a type of Yahshua the Messiah, and in the day in which Yahshua lived others would have recognized the Messiah’s name as being the same as the hero of the Old Testament.
Yahshua (Joshua) was a common name in the day in which Messiah appeared. There are others recorded in scripture who shared the same name. In the genealogy of Yahshua, another of the same name is also mentioned, although most translations record it differently.
the son of Joshua [Greek Iesous, Hebrew Yahshua], the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi…
Also, Yahshua the Messiah often had appellations added to His name to identify which Yahshua He was. He was referred to as “Yahshua the Christ or Messiah,” “Yahshua of Nazareth,” “Yahshua Messiah of Nazareth,” etc.. This was to identify which Yahshua was being referenced.
A question I have not been able to arrive at a satisfactory answer to is “Why did the translators render the Greek Iesous as Jesus in some instances and as Joshua, Jose, or other renderings in other places?” If the translators knew that the Messiah shared the same name as the leader of Israel who took the people into the promised land, then why did they not render both names the same? It would be much more authentic if the English speaking church knew the Messiah by the name Joshua, for Joshua is the anglicization of the Hebrew Yahshua.
It is evident that the translators understood this. One need only look at a couple of New Testament scriptures to discern this fact.
the son of Joshua [Strong’s 2424 Iesous]
“And having received it in their turn, our fathers brought it in with Joshua [Strong’s 2424 Iesous] upon dispossessing the nations whom God drove out before our fathers, until the time of David.
For if Joshua [Strong’s 2424 Iesous] had given them rest, He would not have spoken of another day after that.
This word, Strong’s 2424 Iesous, is the same name translated as Jesus nearly everywhere else in the New Testament. If the translators knew that Jesus was the same name as the Hebrew leader whom we know as Joshua, then why did they not translate the names the same? The rather indiscriminate manner of choosing how to render Biblical names has led to the obscuring of the links between those who serve as types and antitypes of one another.
To approach the name of Yahshua from another perspective, it is said that Yahshua would come in the name of Yahweh. Let us examine what this means.
On the next day the great multitude who had come to the feast, when they heard that Yahshua was coming to Jerusalem, took the branches of the palm trees, and went out to meet Him, and began to cry out, “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of Yahweh, even the King of Israel.”
Of course, all of our popular English translations say, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord,” but this scripture in John is actually a direct fulfillment of Psalms 118:26.
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of Yahweh; we have blessed you from the house of Yahweh.
What does it mean to come in the name of Yahweh? On one level it certainly means that Yahshua came in the authority of Yahweh. On another level it also indicates that He came bearing the name of Yahweh. As we have already indicated, Yah is a form of the name Yahweh that occurs 49 times in the Old Testament. Yahshua fulfilled this scripture by coming in the authority of Yahweh and also by bearing His name as part of His own.
The apostle Paul was a Pharisee, well versed in the scriptures. When he spoke the following, he was quoting from the scriptures that he knew so well.
for “Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved.”
What scripture was Paul quoting from?
“And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of Yahweh will be saved; for on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be those who escape, as Yahweh has said, even among the survivors whom Yahweh calls.”
When Paul said “Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved,” to whom was he referring? If we look only a few verses further down we see that it is the Messiah, or Christ.
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.
As the message of Christ, or Messiah, is preached then people are able to call upon His name and be saved. We are further told that “there is salvation in no other name” (Acts 4:12), yet when Joel prophetically writes about coming days he states, “And it will come about that whoever calls on the name of Yahweh will be saved.”
As we relate these verses together we can determine that the Messiah did indeed share the same name as the Father. The Father is Yahweh, or Yah, and the son is Yahshua, literally Yah’s salvation. When people call upon the name of Yahshua they are not only speaking the name of the Father, but they are proclaiming the Son to be the Father’s salvation.
Furthermore, we are told that John the Baptist came as a fulfillment of the scripture that Elijah would precede Yahshua’s coming. This prophecy was recorded in Malachi. Whom did Malachi say would follow Elijah? Young’s Literal Translation phrases this scripture in this manner.
Lo, I am sending to you Elijah the prophet, Before the coming of the day of [Yahweh], The great and the fearful.
(Young’s Literal Translation)
It is remarkable to note that John came in the spirit of Elijah, to announce to the Jews the coming of their Messiah. Elijah literally means “Yah is God.” This was the message John proclaimed. He identified Yahshua as the Son of God, the Messiah.
Even as Father and Son were one in essence, so they shared the same name. Yahshua made this quite evident when He said, “Before Abraham was, I AM” (John 8:58). In making this declaration, all the Jews knew that Yahshua was proclaiming that He and the Father were one, for He was quoting from Yahweh’s revelation to Moses.
And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM”; and He said, “Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.'”
In many ways Yahshua proclaimed that He and the Father were one. Yahshua proclaimed Himself to be the Rock (Matthew 16:18, I Corinthians 10:4), and in Isaiah 44:8 Yahweh is proclaimed to be the Rock. Yahshua proclaimed Himself to be the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End (Revelation 1:8), and in the Old Testament the same is spoken of Yahweh (Isaiah 44:6, Isaiah 48:12). If they shared the same titles and descriptions, should they not also share the same name?
Indeed, there appears to be more to this proclamation that Yahshua came in the name of the Father than a reference to the fact that He came in the Father’s authority. He truly did share the Father’s name.
On the next day the great multitude who had come to the feast, when they heard that Yahshua was coming to Jerusalem, took the branches of the palm trees, and went out to meet Him, and began to cry out, “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of Yahweh, even the King of Israel.”
I am convinced that it is the Father’s will for His name to be known. It is said that the heavens would receive Yahshua until the time of the restoration of all things (Acts 3:21). Is it not appropriate that His name should be restored before He returns? Should not the name of the Father also be restored? I am witnessing many, who have previously not known the names Yahweh and Yahshua, come to know these names and use them. This is not something organized by man, but it is a sovereign work of the Holy Spirit.
The replacement and subsequent forgetting of the memorial name of God is a great tragedy and it is at least partially attributable to men choosing their traditions over the will of Yahweh. In my own life I am convinced that I am to choose the will of the Father over the traditions of men. If the Holy Spirit thought it important to record for mankind the name of Yahweh, then I must conclude that it is both significant and important.
To those who call the Savior by the name Jesus, I find no reason to condemn this practice. As a teacher to the church of Yahshua I seek to impart understanding of the mysteries hidden in the scriptures. It is my conviction that the Spirit of Yahweh would have me use the name Yahshua in these writings to facilitate understanding, not to throw rocks at those who use another name.
I trust this will serve as a suitable explanation of the usage of divine names throughout this book, and other writings of this author.
This is the final portion of the book Sabbath.