BIBLE HISTORY DAILY

The History of the Tetragrammaton

How YHWH became Jehovah

Tetragrammaton

The four-letter name of God, YHWH, also known as the tetragrammaton, represented in the Phoenician (top line), Old Hebrew (middle line), and modern square Hebrew (bottom line) scripts. Image credit: Zappaz created the png file, Bryan Derksen created the SVG file, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

 

There is a famous movie scene in which the world’s most notorious archaeologist, Indiana Jones, must pass a series of harrowing trials in order to reach the Holy Grail. In one of these trials, Indy must traverse a particularly deadly trap by only stepping on the stones marked with the letters that make up the name of God. Indy does so and then everyone gets to learn that in Latin the name “Jehovah” starts with the letter I—after Indy almost dies by stepping on the letter J.

In reality, Indy would have fallen to his doom anyway because the name Jehovah did not appear until the 16th century when William Tyndale introduced it to the world in his translation of the Book of Exodus. Indeed, the Crusaders who, at least in Steven Spielberg’s film, built the booby-trapped temple of the Grail would have simply used “Dominus,” the word used for the name of God in the Latin Vulgate version of the Bible. Likewise, if the trials had been devised by a Judean of the Second Temple period, like Joseph of Arimathea—the keeper of the Holy Grail according to medieval legend—Indy would have only had to walk on four letters—YHWH—known to many as the Tetragrammaton.

It is this four-letter Hebrew word that William Tyndale would eventually translate into the name Jehovah. Unfortunately, Tyndale was unfamiliar with the word’s history. Because of the perceived holiness of God’s name, many observent Jews never uttered it aloud. Instead, they say haShem (“the name”) or Adonai (“my Lord”), a tradition that dated back to at least the Hellenistic period (c. 332–37 BCE). This was so important that when the Hebrew vowel system was invented in the Middle Ages, the rabbis that penned the scriptures chose to add the vowels for Adonai onto the Tetragrammaton as a reminder not to say God’s true name out loud. It was these Hebrew texts that Tyndale used to make his translations, which ultimately became the basis for the Old Testament of the King James Version of the Bible in 1611. And the rest is history.

The true pronunciation of YHWH can never be truly known because of the nature of the language, but clues do exist, including theophoric personal names known from the Bible and archaeology that reference YHWH—names such as Elijah, Adonijah, and Jeremiah. This led to the most commonly accepted pronunciation, “Yahweh,” but even this is still debated. Because of this uncertainty, many simply just use YHWH for the name.


In the free eBook, A Digger’s Life: A Guide to the Archaeology Dig Experience, step into an archaeological excavation and find out what it takes to find, prepare for, and work on a dig.

* Indicates a required field.

Like the pronunciation, virtually everything about the name YHWH is debated—its origins, its significance, etc.—as is every aspect of the religion of the god who bears the name. In the article “Yahweh’s Desert Origins,” published in the Fall 2022 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review, scholar Juan Manuel Tebes discusses the ongoing debate surrounding the origins of Yahweh and the evidence that the deity may have been first worshiped by nomadic tribes living east of Sinai—people known to the Egyptians as the Shasu.

Regardless of the origins of Yahweh worship, it is clear that by the United Monarchy (c. tenth century BCE), Yahweh had become a very important deity to the people of Israel and Judah. It is at this time that personal names honoring YHWH become prevalent, replacing those of earlier Canaanite deities in popularity. By the mid-ninth century, when Mesha, king of Moab, erected his famous victory stela at his capital in Dibon, YHWH had become the national deity of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah, officially recognized by their neighbors and enemies. And since then, the name YHWH has been firmly cemented in history.

To further explore the historical origins of Yahweh and how he came to be the patron deity of Israel and Judah, read Juan Manuel Tebes’s article “Yahweh’s Desert Origins,” published in the Fall 2022 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review.

Subscribers: Read the full article “Yahweh’s Desert Origins” by Juan Manuel Tebes in the Fall 2022 issue of Biblical Archaeology Review.


Read more in Bible History Daily:

Video: The Revelation of the Divine Name to Moses

All-Access members, read more in the BAS Library:

The Name of God in the New Testament
Why God Has So Many Names

Not a BAS Library or All-Access Member yet? Join today.

24 Responses

  1. Steve Marlowe says:

    “Jehovah…” (Yehovah) It is widely used in many churches. It is considered by many Christians to be hollowed, and many beautiful hymns also endear it, however, this name “Jehovah” is a concoction of man. Therefore, it is a “mongrel,” a “hybrid,” and it is “fantastic,” a fantasy, and it is “monstrous!” There is something very wrong with this euphonious name Jehovah. Therefore, the name of Jehovah was a name never revealed by the LORD. The facts have only to be known to justify this verdict.
    What are the facts?
    Ever since the Babylonian invasion of the Kingdom of Judea, and the enforced diaspora of its noble class in 597 BCE, the Jews have had a strong penchant for hiding the name of the LORD (YHWH) from the Gentiles, thus preventing them from potentially profaning the LORD’s name revealed to Moses (specifically the name of YAH, “HaYAH”, as found in Exodus 3:13-15). YAH is “the name which is above every name.” Readers in the synagogues would inadvertently attempt to pronounce the LORD’s name, as there were no vowels in the Hebrew words within the Hebrew Bible [or as known as “The Old Testament”] when coming upon God’s name: YHWH. Later, the Jewish clergy developed the practice, around the 1100s of adding Hebrew vowels created by the Masoretes, to the Tetragrammaton [Gr. word for the four consonant letters of the LORD’s name]. The vowels were taken from at least three other Hebrew words, namely, Adonay (meaning Lord, with the vowels of a-o-ai causing the hybrid name YaHoWaiH, or later shortened to YAHWEH), Eloah (meaning God, with the vowels of e-o-a causing YeHoWaH later Jehovah), and Elohim (meaning Gods, with the vowels of e-o-i causing YeHoWiH, as shown in Strong’s Dictionary of Bible Words # 3069). These hybrid names were never meant to form any legitimate name for the LORD but were placed there to remind the readers in the synagogues to say, “Adonay” instead of attempting to pronounce the LORD’s actual name.
    Later in Medieval times, the Roman Catholic Church was known to raid Jewish synagogues, take their gold, and the Hebrew Scriptures [the Old Testament], and persecute Jews. Raymondus Martini was a 13th century Dominican friar and theologian. He is remembered for his book called “Pugio Fidei” (the year 1270 CE). Finding the absconded Hebrew Scriptures in the Dominican Library, and believing he had discovered the name of God, he used the name Iehovah (or Iehova) in his book not understanding that these vowels were not original to the LORD’s actual name. The name and pronunciation of “Jehovah,” (and also the name Jesus unknown until the 17th century) were essentially unknown in the years before 1520 CE, when introduced and propagated by Peter, Galatinus (1450-1540), he held the office of penitentiary under pope Leo X. His chief work De Arcanis Catholicae Veritatis, a book, written at the request of the pope, the emperor, and other dignitaries, in the year 1516 CE, as he also used the name Iehovah in his book. The name Iehovah was altered with the addition of the letter J, which was a recent addition to the English alphabet in the 17th century. Galatinus also did not know of the Jewish practice of adding vowels from an entirely different word, and he did not know that the vowels found around the Tetragrammaton YeHoWaH were from the Hebrew word Eloah.
    Noted Bible scholar J. B. Rotherham, essentially stated, “To give YHWH (Latin: IHVH and later JHVH) the vowels of the word (ELOAH) to remind the Jewish reader to say, ‘Adonay,’ and to be pronounced by the Christians, ‘Jehovah,’ is about as hybrid a combination as it would be to spell the name of Germany with the vowels of Portugal-viz., Gormuna” (The Emphasized Bible, J. B. Rotherham, Kregel Publication, 1994, Pp. 24-25). Jehovah in its present hybrid form has only existed since the 17th century. Fact: The LORD’s essential name is YAH, and Bible scholars have acknowledged YAHWEH (see Strong’s #3050), as in “Praise YAH,” Hebrew: “Halleluyah!” The English “Hallelujah” is a misnomer. YAH is “the name which is above every name” (Philippians 2:9), and YAHSHUA is the only name by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12), and this name is to be known among every language, tongue, as the essential revealed name of the LORD according to the Gospel (Philippians 2:11), YAH, as in HaYAH (the I AM). The Savior identified His name as “I AM” (YAH, see John 8:58). The prophet Isaiah identified the name of salvation as YAH (Isaiah 12:2 NKJV). And “shua” means “my help”, as in “my salvation.” To reject the revealed name of YAHSHUA, which was given by the angel (Matthew 1:21) is to stand condemned (John 3:18).
    Je-hovah, “hovah” in Hebrew means, “Ruin, Mischief, and Calamity” (see Strong’s #1942, #1943). The Jewish Encyclopedia, states, under the name “Jehovah,” “This name is commonly represented in modern translation by the form Jehovah, which, however, is a philological impossibility” (p. 160). The Jehovah’s Witnesses admittedly make a similar reference that the name Jehovah is inferior, in their book: Let Your Name Be Sanctified (p. 16). Undoubtedly, the name Jehovah is not the revealed name of the LORD! Many Christian clergy know this truth that the name Jehovah is bogus. Still, due to their tradition, or the fact that this name erroneously appears in the King James Version of the Bible, they hold to this euphonious name for the sake of their tradition, which makes void the revelation of God (Mark 7:6-7). The Lord has a warning for them, “And now, O priests (pastors and teachers), this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name,” says the LORD of hosts, “I will send a curse upon you, Yes, I have cursed them already, because you do not take it to heart” (Malachi 2:1-2). Satan is deceiving the whole world (Revelation 12:9). Despite being told the truth of the one name of salvation, YAHSHUA, they will hold to the name Jesus, Jehovah, never revealed by the LORD. Many will reject the name YAHSHUA holding to be with the many despite the admonishment: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13-14). The name Jesus was never revealed by the LORD, or an angel of the Lord, and history proves this, as eminent historian Ernest Renan acknowledged that the Savior was never in His lifetime called “Jesus” (The Life of Jesus, p. 90).

  2. There is no “W” in Hebrew. The Tetragrammaton is: YHVH
    Thousands of Hebrew manuscripts including the Aleppo and Leningrad Codex have the Name of God the Father intact. It is spelled: YEHOVAH

    The KJV Bible used JEHOVAH in 2-3 places but sadly defaults back to the Title: LORD.

    See the work of Dr. Nehemiah Gordon

    1. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Proto-Hebrew had the Waw, which is still used today among Jews in Yemen. The Vav came later among Ashkenazi Jews.

    2. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      “Jehovah…” (Yehovah) It is widely used in many churches. It is considered by many Christians to be hollowed, and many beautiful hymns also endear it, however, this name “Jehovah” is a concoction of man. Therefore, it is a “mongrel,” a “hybrid,” and it is “fantastic,” a fantasy, and it is “monstrous!” There is something very wrong with this euphonious name Jehovah. Therefore, the name of Jehovah was a name never revealed by the LORD. The facts have only to be known to justify this verdict.
      What are the facts?
      Ever since the Babylonian invasion of the Kingdom of Judea, and the enforced diaspora of its noble class in 597 BCE, the Jews have had a strong penchant for hiding the name of the LORD (YHWH) from the Gentiles, thus preventing them from potentially profaning the LORD’s name revealed to Moses (specifically the name of YAH, “HaYAH”, as found in Exodus 3:13-15). YAH is “the name which is above every name.” Readers in the synagogues would inadvertently attempt to pronounce the LORD’s name, as there were no vowels in the Hebrew words within the Hebrew Bible [or as known as “The Old Testament”] when coming upon God’s name: YHWH. Later, the Jewish clergy developed the practice, around the 1100s of adding Hebrew vowels created by the Masoretes, to the Tetragrammaton [Gr. word for the four consonant letters of the LORD’s name]. The vowels were taken from at least three other Hebrew words, namely, Adonay (meaning Lord, with the vowels of a-o-ai causing the hybrid name YaHoWaiH, or later shortened to YAHWEH), Eloah (meaning God, with the vowels of e-o-a causing YeHoWaH later Jehovah), and Elohim (meaning Gods, with the vowels of e-o-i causing YeHoWiH, as shown in Strong’s Dictionary of Bible Words # 3069). These hybrid names were never meant to form any legitimate name for the LORD but were placed there to remind the readers in the synagogues to say, “Adonay” instead of attempting to pronounce the LORD’s actual name.
      Later in Medieval times, the Roman Catholic Church was known to raid Jewish synagogues, take their gold, and the Hebrew Scriptures [the Old Testament], and persecute Jews. Raymondus Martini was a 13th century Dominican friar and theologian. He is remembered for his book called “Pugio Fidei” (the year 1270 CE). Finding the absconded Hebrew Scriptures in the Dominican Library, and believing he had discovered the name of God, he used the name Iehovah (or Iehova) in his book not understanding that these vowels were not original to the LORD’s actual name. The name and pronunciation of “Jehovah,” (and also the name Jesus unknown until the 17th century) were essentially unknown in the years before 1520 CE, when introduced and propagated by Peter, Galatinus (1450-1540), he held the office of penitentiary under pope Leo X. His chief work De Arcanis Catholicae Veritatis, a book, written at the request of the pope, the emperor, and other dignitaries, in the year 1516 CE, as he also used the name Iehovah in his book. The name Iehovah was altered with the addition of the letter J, which was a recent addition to the English alphabet in the 17th century. Galatinus also did not know of the Jewish practice of adding vowels from an entirely different word, and he did not know that the vowels found around the Tetragrammaton YeHoWaH were from the Hebrew word Eloah.
      Noted Bible scholar J. B. Rotherham, essentially stated, “To give YHWH (Latin: IHVH and later JHVH) the vowels of the word (ELOAH) to remind the Jewish reader to say, ‘Adonay,’ and to be pronounced by the Christians, ‘Jehovah,’ is about as hybrid a combination as it would be to spell the name of Germany with the vowels of Portugal-viz., Gormuna” (The Emphasized Bible, J. B. Rotherham, Kregel Publication, 1994, Pp. 24-25). Jehovah in its present hybrid form has only existed since the 17th century. Fact: The LORD’s essential name is YAH, and Bible scholars have acknowledged YAHWEH (see Strong’s #3050), as in “Praise YAH,” Hebrew: “Halleluyah!” The English “Hallelujah” is a misnomer. YAH is “the name which is above every name” (Philippians 2:9), and YAHSHUA is the only name by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12), and this name is to be known among every language, tongue, as the essential revealed name of the LORD according to the Gospel (Philippians 2:11), YAH, as in HaYAH (the I AM). The Savior identified His name as “I AM” (YAH, see John 8:58). The prophet Isaiah identified the name of salvation as YAH (Isaiah 12:2 NKJV). And “shua” means “my help”, as in “my salvation.” To reject the revealed name of YAHSHUA, which was given by the angel (Matthew 1:21) is to stand condemned (John 3:18).
      Je-hovah, “hovah” in Hebrew means, “Ruin, Mischief, and Calamity” (see Strong’s #1942, #1943). The Jewish Encyclopedia, states, under the name “Jehovah,” “This name is commonly represented in modern translation by the form Jehovah, which, however, is a philological impossibility” (p. 160). The Jehovah’s Witnesses admittedly make a similar reference that the name Jehovah is inferior, in their book: Let Your Name Be Sanctified (p. 16). Undoubtedly, the name Jehovah is not the revealed name of the LORD! Many Christian clergy know this truth that the name Jehovah is bogus. Still, due to their tradition, or the fact that this name erroneously appears in the King James Version of the Bible, they hold to this euphonious name for the sake of their tradition, which makes void the revelation of God (Mark 7:6-7). The Lord has a warning for them, “And now, O priests (pastors and teachers), this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name,” says the LORD of hosts, “I will send a curse upon you, Yes, I have cursed them already, because you do not take it to heart” (Malachi 2:1-2). Satan is deceiving the whole world (Revelation 12:9). Despite being told the truth of the one name of salvation, YAHSHUA, they will hold to the name Jesus, Jehovah, never revealed by the LORD. Many will reject the name YAHSHUA holding to be with the many despite the admonishment: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13-14). The name Jesus was never revealed by the LORD, or an angel of the Lord, and history proves this, as eminent historian Ernest Renan acknowledged that the Savior was never in His lifetime called “Jesus” (The Life of Jesus, p. 90).

  3. Daniel Haydu says:

    God allows us to translate. He proved this at Tower of Babel and Pentacost. Don’t get caught up in all the legalism, its the devils tool, roadblock to evangilizing. As long as your heart is for God, its ok to know ancient as well as common language translations. Nobody is going to convert world to old world Hebrew, Greek or Arimaic. Thank you for the article this is difficult subject.

    1. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Legalism? Legalism, in a Christian, or New Testament, context is when man places a prerequisite upon the attainment of salvation, that the LORD never required, for example, “circumcision” among Gentile believers in Christ. The Tower of Babel can in no wise legitimize the transforming of the name of salvation into an entirely different name. The issue is not translation, for example, in Hebrew, “You shall not murder,” as it is in English the same meaning, however, when the apostle Peter makes it clear, that there is no other name (Acts 4:12), YAHSHUA, and man takes the common Aramaic name Yeshua and transliterates it to Iesous, an entirely different name that has no intrinsic meaning regarding salvation, that is a problem! How can you talk of “your heart is for God,” which is a subjective thing, as many have fooled themselves into thinking their heart is for God (Matthew 7:21-23), and yet that heart is in defiance, by the traditions of men, to the revelation of the LORD? When one does not follow the commandments of God, that is the will of the Father, this is what the Gospel warns us about these “workers of lawlessness!” The LORD revealed a name and every tongue, regardless of language, is to know this revealed name, as the main prerequisite of the LORD (Philippians 2:9-11). The Savior has the name, YAH, the name which is above every name, not to be subjected to linguistic evolution caused by man.

    2. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Mr. Haydu, I agree, “God allows us to translate.” However, I do not agree, that God allows us to transliterate His name into an entirely different name devoid of the original meaning.

  4. The glaring weakness in the article is in the mishandling of theophoric names, which has been understood as a foundational support of Jehovah/Yehovah for centuries, with two Hebrew letters and two vowels all agreeing:

    JEHOachaz
    JEHOash
    JEHOzabad
    JEHOhanan
    JEHOaida
    JEHOiachin
    JEHOiakim
    JEHOiarib
    JEHOnadab
    JEHOnathan
    JEHOseph
    JEHOzadak
    JEHOram
    JEHOshaphat
    (list made years back by Scott Jones)

    As for the attempt to use the -yah and -yahu suffix for theophoric names, that is only matching up with the poetic or abbreviated short form Yah, (Y…ah) not the theophoric consonants and vowels as we see in the names above.

    Thanks!

    Steven Avery
    Duthcess County, NY USA
    https://linktr.ee/stevenavery

  5. Daniel says:

    Unfortunately, the Latin got it wrong – Yud is equivalent to “Y”. Regarding ‘waw’, it’s actually a ‘Vav’ in ancient Hebrew, and proof lies in the ‘w’ pronunciation stems from all the Arabic speaking regions where the Jewish population also had lost the ability to speak the ‘v’ sound, Spain to Yemen, as there is no ‘v’ sound in Arabic. The origins of “Yahweh” are dubious, indeed. For in-depth studies in the proper pronunciation of YeHoVaH, visit http://www.nehemiahswall.com and explore the work of Dr. Nehemia Gordon.

  6. RWL says:

    Interesting article but there are few corrections/other views: In SH’MOT (not ‘exodus’) 3, the mal’akh (messenger) of Yahweh pronounces our Creator’s Name: Yud-Heh-Waw-Heh (some say Yud-Heh-Vav-Heh, but this was a later addition in Medieval Hebrew, not Ancient Hebrew). The word Adonai was a later addition after the Greeks informed the Jews not to mention Our Creator’s true name. Adonai was a title used by the Jews to appease the Greeks. The word Adonai comes from the Greek ‘god’ of rebirth Adonis, who was the favourite of the ‘goddess’ Aphrodite (identified with Venus by the Romans; By the way, did you know that most of our planets, months, days of the weeks, clothing, cars, company names & logos, personal names & places are from Greco-Roman ‘gods’). After the Maccabean revolt, certain Jewish Leaders disobeyed Yahweh (in SH’MOT 6, Yahweh stated that His Name would be known throughout the land), and changed our Creator’s name to Ha-Shem, and other sinful practices that Yehoshua our Maschiach/Messiah openly refuted when He confronted them.). Furthermore, the term ‘god’ is a title, originating from the Germans who used this title for their supernatural being ‘Odin.’ The Ancient, Medieval, and even Modern Hebrew languages & dialects never used the title ‘god’ or ‘lord’ (another title originating from England for their kings, knights, & persons of nobility; some say the term ‘lord’ originated with the name ‘Baal’, Canaanite supernatural being). Finally, the ‘father of the letter J’ is Gian Giorgio Trissino, an Italian author and grammarian who lived from 1478 to 1550. He invented the letter J around 1524, but it wasn’t used in the first few ‘Bibles’ or in common print until decades later. William Tyndale was arrested and burned at the stake for (among so many other accusations) stating that we shouldn’t be using the word ‘church’ for the house of Yehoshua our Messiah, instead we should use the word ‘congregation’ or ‘Kehilla or kehillah’. The word ‘church ‘ derives from the word ‘circus’, where (in earlier times) people go to be entertained by dogs, ponies, and the mistreatment of slaves.

  7. RWL says:

    Interesting article but there are few corrections/other views: In SH’MOT (not ‘exodus’) 3, the mal’akh (messenger) of Yahweh pronounces our Creator’s Name: Yud-Heh-Waw-Heh (some say Yud-Heh-Vav-Heh, but this was a later addition in Medieval Hebrew, not Ancient Hebrew). The word Adonai was a later addition after the Greeks informed the Jews not to mention Our Creator’s true name. Adonai was a title used by the Jews to appease the Greeks. The word Adonai comes from the Greek ‘god’ of rebirth Adonis, who was the favourite of the ‘goddess’ Aphrodite (identified with Venus by the Romans; By the way, did you know that most of our planets, months, days of the weeks, clothing, cars, company names & logos, personal names & places are from Greco-Roman ‘gods’). After the Maccabean revolt, certain Jewish Leaders disobeyed Yahweh (in SH’MOT 6, Yahweh stated that His Name would be known throughout the land), and changed our Creator’s name to Ha-Shem, and other sinful practices that Yehoshua our Maschiach/Messiah openly refuted when He confronted them.). Furthermore, the term ‘god’ is a title, originating from the Germans who used this title for their supernatural being ‘Odin.’ The Ancient, Medieval, and even Modern Hebrew languages & dialects never used the title ‘god’ or ‘lord’ (another title originating from England for their kings, knights, & persons of nobility; some say the term ‘lord’ originated with the name ‘Baal’, Canaanite supernatural being). Finally, the ‘father of the letter J’ is Gian Giorgio Trissino, an Italian author and grammarian who lived from 1478 to 1550. He invented the letter J around 1524, but it wasn’t used in the first few ‘Bibles’ or in common print until decades later. William Tyndale was arrested and burned at the stake for (among so many other accusations) stating that we shouldn’t be using the word ‘church’ for the house of Yehoshua our Messiah, instead we should use the word ‘congregation’ or ‘Kehilla or kehillah’. The word ‘church ‘ derives from the word ‘circus’, where (in earlier times) people go to be entertained by dogs, ponies, and the mistreatment of slaves.

  8. George M. Forsythe says:

    The myth about appending the vowels from Adonai to the Tetragrammaton is just one of the common misconceptions and inventions that have been disproven by Dr. Nehemia Gordon in his book, “Shattering the Conspiracy of Silence.” I would suggest that the author of this article read that book and then prayerfully consider rewriting this article.

    1. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Mr. Forsythe, would you defy history? It is well-documented that vowels from other words were placed onto the Tetragrammaton in the Hebrew text to remind the readers in the synagogues not to say the name of God, but to say, “Adonay,” instead. The vowels of words from Adonay, which caused, YaHoWayH later shortened, “YAHWEH,” and Eloah, which caused Jehovah, or Yehovah (see Strong’s #3068), and Elohim, which caused “Yehovih” (see Strong’s Dictionary of Bible Words #3069). When the Catholics invaded synagogues and took their gold and Scriptures, as it was the Hebrew Scriptures in Roman Catholic Libraries scholars noted the vowel points around the name of God YHWH. Nehemia Gordon has found many Hebrew texts with the vowel points of Eloah (e-o-a) placed onto YHWH, which he makes YHVH, to cause Yehovah, but he does not tell of the Hebrew texts with other vowels placed causing different names, Yahweh, or Yehovih. Why does he not tell of the other variations?

  9. Edward Steinhouse says:

    “Adoni” means “my lord.” “Adonai” means “my lords.” I have often wondered about this.

    1. Dr. Eric Rice says:

      Adonai is singular, meaning “Lord.” Adonim (ad-oh-neem), is lords

  10. JC says:

    Thank you for writing about such an interesting topic as Gods personal name according the Bible.

    About pronouniciation, I find the lectures of Nehemia Gordon very informative. I get the impression he knows hebrew quite well. (Take a look at YouTube, and at his website Nehemias Wall.) He explains in detail why he ends up with the conclution that Gods name YHWH is to be pronounced Jehovah/ Yehovah.

    Names are being pronounced different in different languages. That is the case with my name, and yours as well. Also the name of Jesus is pronounced different in different languages. But that fact is not a logic reason to not use his name. Or yours. Or mine. Last but not least, it can not be a valid reason to not use and prounounce Gods personal name, the name he introduced himself with, repeated about 7000 times in the Bible – more than any other biblical name. Even pagan Gods are named in the Bible, so why not The Authors own name…? Plain logic 🙂

    (About film clips related to Gods name. You might be familiar with Monty Python’s clip «The Stoning Scene»? Also on YouTube)

    – Therefore, thank you for highlighting this very interesting and important topic!

  11. Patrick Lordan says:

    Joseph of Arimathea or other Jews at the time wouldn’t have wanted Indy or other Gentiles to tread on the sacred name!

  12. William Lollis says:

    13 Then Moses said to God, “Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?”

    14 And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” Exodus 3:13-14

    According to the Bible God’s name is I AM.

    1. Capt Mitch says:

      I always expand the translation in Exodus 3:14 to “I am the self-existent one.” Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever. Heb 13:8.

    2. Patrick Tilton says:

      Aa the term ‘Abba’ is used for God — meaning ‘Daddy’ or ‘Papa’, or even just ‘Pop’ — and since God has also been portrayed as an all-seeing Eye situated above a truncated pyramid (as in the Great Seal of the United States), then God could be referred to as “Pop-Eye” and His identifying epithet given to Moses could then be pronounced “I Yam What I Yam!” Notice that His larger-than-normal forearms contain symbols associated with Christ in the 1st Century: the Anchor. His eternal enmity with Bluto suggests a theological identification of the latter with the Devil, the Man of Blood — and ‘Blut’ in German means ‘Blood’. The people of Israel — often likened to God’s ‘spouse’ in Scripture — would be represented by Olive Oyl, over whom God and the Devil battle for favor. And, of course, the baby “Sweet Pea” would represent the Messiah. Who, other than God Himself, can be said to be “strong to the finish” in the ages-long battle against the forces of the Devil?

      1. Craig says:

        “Abba” does not mean ‘Pop’ or ‘daddy’, instead it is a formal word meaning “father”. We should stop saying it means “daddy”.

    3. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Mr. Lollis, Moses asked for God’s name, and God answered, “HaYah Ashar HaYAH,” which means, “The I AM Who the I AM.” And God tells Moses to tell the people that “I AM has sent me to you.” That is “Tell them YAH has sent me to you.” According to the Bible, God’s essential name is YAH. We say rightly, “Halleluyah!” YAH, not Jah, or Yeh. When Christ told the people that He, before Abraham was, is YAH, in that He is their God, they, knowing full well what He was telling them, picked up stones to stone Him for blasphemy (John 8:58). Halleluyah, Praise YAH!

  13. Dr. Eric Rice says:

    Way too many assumptions in the article.
    First: Adonai means “Lord”; Adoni means “my Lord.”
    Second: the vowels for the tetragrammaton are easily known since it was derived from the “to be” verb in Hebrew. Moses asks God who shall I say sent me, and God replies with the first person, common singular form of the “to be” verb, however in Hebrew he can’t go the the elders of Israiel, and say, “I am” sent me. In English we can do it, because English allows for direct and exact quotes, though in Hebrew this totally foreign to the language. Moses must say, “He Is” sent me, however, it may be a name but linguistically it is still a verb. The Masorites understood this, so in the Hebrew texts that are pointed, there are different vowels, depending on its use in a sentenence. No debate warranted.
    Third: Assuming God is “god.” Archeaologists such as your self, always act like you are trying to uncover fact. Your assumption is there is no fact and that you must find fact to create a baseline for fact, then improve on the baseline to create more fact. The problem with this is that you refuse to acknowledge any fact that is already before you, so what you and so many do is create a predjudice against anything that already exists. Such as the Bible, or Moses, or the Law and ultimately God. May God have mercy on your souls.

    1. Dwight Suiter says:

      Hear! Hear!

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


24 Responses

  1. Steve Marlowe says:

    “Jehovah…” (Yehovah) It is widely used in many churches. It is considered by many Christians to be hollowed, and many beautiful hymns also endear it, however, this name “Jehovah” is a concoction of man. Therefore, it is a “mongrel,” a “hybrid,” and it is “fantastic,” a fantasy, and it is “monstrous!” There is something very wrong with this euphonious name Jehovah. Therefore, the name of Jehovah was a name never revealed by the LORD. The facts have only to be known to justify this verdict.
    What are the facts?
    Ever since the Babylonian invasion of the Kingdom of Judea, and the enforced diaspora of its noble class in 597 BCE, the Jews have had a strong penchant for hiding the name of the LORD (YHWH) from the Gentiles, thus preventing them from potentially profaning the LORD’s name revealed to Moses (specifically the name of YAH, “HaYAH”, as found in Exodus 3:13-15). YAH is “the name which is above every name.” Readers in the synagogues would inadvertently attempt to pronounce the LORD’s name, as there were no vowels in the Hebrew words within the Hebrew Bible [or as known as “The Old Testament”] when coming upon God’s name: YHWH. Later, the Jewish clergy developed the practice, around the 1100s of adding Hebrew vowels created by the Masoretes, to the Tetragrammaton [Gr. word for the four consonant letters of the LORD’s name]. The vowels were taken from at least three other Hebrew words, namely, Adonay (meaning Lord, with the vowels of a-o-ai causing the hybrid name YaHoWaiH, or later shortened to YAHWEH), Eloah (meaning God, with the vowels of e-o-a causing YeHoWaH later Jehovah), and Elohim (meaning Gods, with the vowels of e-o-i causing YeHoWiH, as shown in Strong’s Dictionary of Bible Words # 3069). These hybrid names were never meant to form any legitimate name for the LORD but were placed there to remind the readers in the synagogues to say, “Adonay” instead of attempting to pronounce the LORD’s actual name.
    Later in Medieval times, the Roman Catholic Church was known to raid Jewish synagogues, take their gold, and the Hebrew Scriptures [the Old Testament], and persecute Jews. Raymondus Martini was a 13th century Dominican friar and theologian. He is remembered for his book called “Pugio Fidei” (the year 1270 CE). Finding the absconded Hebrew Scriptures in the Dominican Library, and believing he had discovered the name of God, he used the name Iehovah (or Iehova) in his book not understanding that these vowels were not original to the LORD’s actual name. The name and pronunciation of “Jehovah,” (and also the name Jesus unknown until the 17th century) were essentially unknown in the years before 1520 CE, when introduced and propagated by Peter, Galatinus (1450-1540), he held the office of penitentiary under pope Leo X. His chief work De Arcanis Catholicae Veritatis, a book, written at the request of the pope, the emperor, and other dignitaries, in the year 1516 CE, as he also used the name Iehovah in his book. The name Iehovah was altered with the addition of the letter J, which was a recent addition to the English alphabet in the 17th century. Galatinus also did not know of the Jewish practice of adding vowels from an entirely different word, and he did not know that the vowels found around the Tetragrammaton YeHoWaH were from the Hebrew word Eloah.
    Noted Bible scholar J. B. Rotherham, essentially stated, “To give YHWH (Latin: IHVH and later JHVH) the vowels of the word (ELOAH) to remind the Jewish reader to say, ‘Adonay,’ and to be pronounced by the Christians, ‘Jehovah,’ is about as hybrid a combination as it would be to spell the name of Germany with the vowels of Portugal-viz., Gormuna” (The Emphasized Bible, J. B. Rotherham, Kregel Publication, 1994, Pp. 24-25). Jehovah in its present hybrid form has only existed since the 17th century. Fact: The LORD’s essential name is YAH, and Bible scholars have acknowledged YAHWEH (see Strong’s #3050), as in “Praise YAH,” Hebrew: “Halleluyah!” The English “Hallelujah” is a misnomer. YAH is “the name which is above every name” (Philippians 2:9), and YAHSHUA is the only name by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12), and this name is to be known among every language, tongue, as the essential revealed name of the LORD according to the Gospel (Philippians 2:11), YAH, as in HaYAH (the I AM). The Savior identified His name as “I AM” (YAH, see John 8:58). The prophet Isaiah identified the name of salvation as YAH (Isaiah 12:2 NKJV). And “shua” means “my help”, as in “my salvation.” To reject the revealed name of YAHSHUA, which was given by the angel (Matthew 1:21) is to stand condemned (John 3:18).
    Je-hovah, “hovah” in Hebrew means, “Ruin, Mischief, and Calamity” (see Strong’s #1942, #1943). The Jewish Encyclopedia, states, under the name “Jehovah,” “This name is commonly represented in modern translation by the form Jehovah, which, however, is a philological impossibility” (p. 160). The Jehovah’s Witnesses admittedly make a similar reference that the name Jehovah is inferior, in their book: Let Your Name Be Sanctified (p. 16). Undoubtedly, the name Jehovah is not the revealed name of the LORD! Many Christian clergy know this truth that the name Jehovah is bogus. Still, due to their tradition, or the fact that this name erroneously appears in the King James Version of the Bible, they hold to this euphonious name for the sake of their tradition, which makes void the revelation of God (Mark 7:6-7). The Lord has a warning for them, “And now, O priests (pastors and teachers), this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name,” says the LORD of hosts, “I will send a curse upon you, Yes, I have cursed them already, because you do not take it to heart” (Malachi 2:1-2). Satan is deceiving the whole world (Revelation 12:9). Despite being told the truth of the one name of salvation, YAHSHUA, they will hold to the name Jesus, Jehovah, never revealed by the LORD. Many will reject the name YAHSHUA holding to be with the many despite the admonishment: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13-14). The name Jesus was never revealed by the LORD, or an angel of the Lord, and history proves this, as eminent historian Ernest Renan acknowledged that the Savior was never in His lifetime called “Jesus” (The Life of Jesus, p. 90).

  2. There is no “W” in Hebrew. The Tetragrammaton is: YHVH
    Thousands of Hebrew manuscripts including the Aleppo and Leningrad Codex have the Name of God the Father intact. It is spelled: YEHOVAH

    The KJV Bible used JEHOVAH in 2-3 places but sadly defaults back to the Title: LORD.

    See the work of Dr. Nehemiah Gordon

    1. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Proto-Hebrew had the Waw, which is still used today among Jews in Yemen. The Vav came later among Ashkenazi Jews.

    2. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      “Jehovah…” (Yehovah) It is widely used in many churches. It is considered by many Christians to be hollowed, and many beautiful hymns also endear it, however, this name “Jehovah” is a concoction of man. Therefore, it is a “mongrel,” a “hybrid,” and it is “fantastic,” a fantasy, and it is “monstrous!” There is something very wrong with this euphonious name Jehovah. Therefore, the name of Jehovah was a name never revealed by the LORD. The facts have only to be known to justify this verdict.
      What are the facts?
      Ever since the Babylonian invasion of the Kingdom of Judea, and the enforced diaspora of its noble class in 597 BCE, the Jews have had a strong penchant for hiding the name of the LORD (YHWH) from the Gentiles, thus preventing them from potentially profaning the LORD’s name revealed to Moses (specifically the name of YAH, “HaYAH”, as found in Exodus 3:13-15). YAH is “the name which is above every name.” Readers in the synagogues would inadvertently attempt to pronounce the LORD’s name, as there were no vowels in the Hebrew words within the Hebrew Bible [or as known as “The Old Testament”] when coming upon God’s name: YHWH. Later, the Jewish clergy developed the practice, around the 1100s of adding Hebrew vowels created by the Masoretes, to the Tetragrammaton [Gr. word for the four consonant letters of the LORD’s name]. The vowels were taken from at least three other Hebrew words, namely, Adonay (meaning Lord, with the vowels of a-o-ai causing the hybrid name YaHoWaiH, or later shortened to YAHWEH), Eloah (meaning God, with the vowels of e-o-a causing YeHoWaH later Jehovah), and Elohim (meaning Gods, with the vowels of e-o-i causing YeHoWiH, as shown in Strong’s Dictionary of Bible Words # 3069). These hybrid names were never meant to form any legitimate name for the LORD but were placed there to remind the readers in the synagogues to say, “Adonay” instead of attempting to pronounce the LORD’s actual name.
      Later in Medieval times, the Roman Catholic Church was known to raid Jewish synagogues, take their gold, and the Hebrew Scriptures [the Old Testament], and persecute Jews. Raymondus Martini was a 13th century Dominican friar and theologian. He is remembered for his book called “Pugio Fidei” (the year 1270 CE). Finding the absconded Hebrew Scriptures in the Dominican Library, and believing he had discovered the name of God, he used the name Iehovah (or Iehova) in his book not understanding that these vowels were not original to the LORD’s actual name. The name and pronunciation of “Jehovah,” (and also the name Jesus unknown until the 17th century) were essentially unknown in the years before 1520 CE, when introduced and propagated by Peter, Galatinus (1450-1540), he held the office of penitentiary under pope Leo X. His chief work De Arcanis Catholicae Veritatis, a book, written at the request of the pope, the emperor, and other dignitaries, in the year 1516 CE, as he also used the name Iehovah in his book. The name Iehovah was altered with the addition of the letter J, which was a recent addition to the English alphabet in the 17th century. Galatinus also did not know of the Jewish practice of adding vowels from an entirely different word, and he did not know that the vowels found around the Tetragrammaton YeHoWaH were from the Hebrew word Eloah.
      Noted Bible scholar J. B. Rotherham, essentially stated, “To give YHWH (Latin: IHVH and later JHVH) the vowels of the word (ELOAH) to remind the Jewish reader to say, ‘Adonay,’ and to be pronounced by the Christians, ‘Jehovah,’ is about as hybrid a combination as it would be to spell the name of Germany with the vowels of Portugal-viz., Gormuna” (The Emphasized Bible, J. B. Rotherham, Kregel Publication, 1994, Pp. 24-25). Jehovah in its present hybrid form has only existed since the 17th century. Fact: The LORD’s essential name is YAH, and Bible scholars have acknowledged YAHWEH (see Strong’s #3050), as in “Praise YAH,” Hebrew: “Halleluyah!” The English “Hallelujah” is a misnomer. YAH is “the name which is above every name” (Philippians 2:9), and YAHSHUA is the only name by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12), and this name is to be known among every language, tongue, as the essential revealed name of the LORD according to the Gospel (Philippians 2:11), YAH, as in HaYAH (the I AM). The Savior identified His name as “I AM” (YAH, see John 8:58). The prophet Isaiah identified the name of salvation as YAH (Isaiah 12:2 NKJV). And “shua” means “my help”, as in “my salvation.” To reject the revealed name of YAHSHUA, which was given by the angel (Matthew 1:21) is to stand condemned (John 3:18).
      Je-hovah, “hovah” in Hebrew means, “Ruin, Mischief, and Calamity” (see Strong’s #1942, #1943). The Jewish Encyclopedia, states, under the name “Jehovah,” “This name is commonly represented in modern translation by the form Jehovah, which, however, is a philological impossibility” (p. 160). The Jehovah’s Witnesses admittedly make a similar reference that the name Jehovah is inferior, in their book: Let Your Name Be Sanctified (p. 16). Undoubtedly, the name Jehovah is not the revealed name of the LORD! Many Christian clergy know this truth that the name Jehovah is bogus. Still, due to their tradition, or the fact that this name erroneously appears in the King James Version of the Bible, they hold to this euphonious name for the sake of their tradition, which makes void the revelation of God (Mark 7:6-7). The Lord has a warning for them, “And now, O priests (pastors and teachers), this commandment is for you. If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name,” says the LORD of hosts, “I will send a curse upon you, Yes, I have cursed them already, because you do not take it to heart” (Malachi 2:1-2). Satan is deceiving the whole world (Revelation 12:9). Despite being told the truth of the one name of salvation, YAHSHUA, they will hold to the name Jesus, Jehovah, never revealed by the LORD. Many will reject the name YAHSHUA holding to be with the many despite the admonishment: “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it” (Matthew 7:13-14). The name Jesus was never revealed by the LORD, or an angel of the Lord, and history proves this, as eminent historian Ernest Renan acknowledged that the Savior was never in His lifetime called “Jesus” (The Life of Jesus, p. 90).

  3. Daniel Haydu says:

    God allows us to translate. He proved this at Tower of Babel and Pentacost. Don’t get caught up in all the legalism, its the devils tool, roadblock to evangilizing. As long as your heart is for God, its ok to know ancient as well as common language translations. Nobody is going to convert world to old world Hebrew, Greek or Arimaic. Thank you for the article this is difficult subject.

    1. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Legalism? Legalism, in a Christian, or New Testament, context is when man places a prerequisite upon the attainment of salvation, that the LORD never required, for example, “circumcision” among Gentile believers in Christ. The Tower of Babel can in no wise legitimize the transforming of the name of salvation into an entirely different name. The issue is not translation, for example, in Hebrew, “You shall not murder,” as it is in English the same meaning, however, when the apostle Peter makes it clear, that there is no other name (Acts 4:12), YAHSHUA, and man takes the common Aramaic name Yeshua and transliterates it to Iesous, an entirely different name that has no intrinsic meaning regarding salvation, that is a problem! How can you talk of “your heart is for God,” which is a subjective thing, as many have fooled themselves into thinking their heart is for God (Matthew 7:21-23), and yet that heart is in defiance, by the traditions of men, to the revelation of the LORD? When one does not follow the commandments of God, that is the will of the Father, this is what the Gospel warns us about these “workers of lawlessness!” The LORD revealed a name and every tongue, regardless of language, is to know this revealed name, as the main prerequisite of the LORD (Philippians 2:9-11). The Savior has the name, YAH, the name which is above every name, not to be subjected to linguistic evolution caused by man.

    2. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Mr. Haydu, I agree, “God allows us to translate.” However, I do not agree, that God allows us to transliterate His name into an entirely different name devoid of the original meaning.

  4. The glaring weakness in the article is in the mishandling of theophoric names, which has been understood as a foundational support of Jehovah/Yehovah for centuries, with two Hebrew letters and two vowels all agreeing:

    JEHOachaz
    JEHOash
    JEHOzabad
    JEHOhanan
    JEHOaida
    JEHOiachin
    JEHOiakim
    JEHOiarib
    JEHOnadab
    JEHOnathan
    JEHOseph
    JEHOzadak
    JEHOram
    JEHOshaphat
    (list made years back by Scott Jones)

    As for the attempt to use the -yah and -yahu suffix for theophoric names, that is only matching up with the poetic or abbreviated short form Yah, (Y…ah) not the theophoric consonants and vowels as we see in the names above.

    Thanks!

    Steven Avery
    Duthcess County, NY USA
    https://linktr.ee/stevenavery

  5. Daniel says:

    Unfortunately, the Latin got it wrong – Yud is equivalent to “Y”. Regarding ‘waw’, it’s actually a ‘Vav’ in ancient Hebrew, and proof lies in the ‘w’ pronunciation stems from all the Arabic speaking regions where the Jewish population also had lost the ability to speak the ‘v’ sound, Spain to Yemen, as there is no ‘v’ sound in Arabic. The origins of “Yahweh” are dubious, indeed. For in-depth studies in the proper pronunciation of YeHoVaH, visit http://www.nehemiahswall.com and explore the work of Dr. Nehemia Gordon.

  6. RWL says:

    Interesting article but there are few corrections/other views: In SH’MOT (not ‘exodus’) 3, the mal’akh (messenger) of Yahweh pronounces our Creator’s Name: Yud-Heh-Waw-Heh (some say Yud-Heh-Vav-Heh, but this was a later addition in Medieval Hebrew, not Ancient Hebrew). The word Adonai was a later addition after the Greeks informed the Jews not to mention Our Creator’s true name. Adonai was a title used by the Jews to appease the Greeks. The word Adonai comes from the Greek ‘god’ of rebirth Adonis, who was the favourite of the ‘goddess’ Aphrodite (identified with Venus by the Romans; By the way, did you know that most of our planets, months, days of the weeks, clothing, cars, company names & logos, personal names & places are from Greco-Roman ‘gods’). After the Maccabean revolt, certain Jewish Leaders disobeyed Yahweh (in SH’MOT 6, Yahweh stated that His Name would be known throughout the land), and changed our Creator’s name to Ha-Shem, and other sinful practices that Yehoshua our Maschiach/Messiah openly refuted when He confronted them.). Furthermore, the term ‘god’ is a title, originating from the Germans who used this title for their supernatural being ‘Odin.’ The Ancient, Medieval, and even Modern Hebrew languages & dialects never used the title ‘god’ or ‘lord’ (another title originating from England for their kings, knights, & persons of nobility; some say the term ‘lord’ originated with the name ‘Baal’, Canaanite supernatural being). Finally, the ‘father of the letter J’ is Gian Giorgio Trissino, an Italian author and grammarian who lived from 1478 to 1550. He invented the letter J around 1524, but it wasn’t used in the first few ‘Bibles’ or in common print until decades later. William Tyndale was arrested and burned at the stake for (among so many other accusations) stating that we shouldn’t be using the word ‘church’ for the house of Yehoshua our Messiah, instead we should use the word ‘congregation’ or ‘Kehilla or kehillah’. The word ‘church ‘ derives from the word ‘circus’, where (in earlier times) people go to be entertained by dogs, ponies, and the mistreatment of slaves.

  7. RWL says:

    Interesting article but there are few corrections/other views: In SH’MOT (not ‘exodus’) 3, the mal’akh (messenger) of Yahweh pronounces our Creator’s Name: Yud-Heh-Waw-Heh (some say Yud-Heh-Vav-Heh, but this was a later addition in Medieval Hebrew, not Ancient Hebrew). The word Adonai was a later addition after the Greeks informed the Jews not to mention Our Creator’s true name. Adonai was a title used by the Jews to appease the Greeks. The word Adonai comes from the Greek ‘god’ of rebirth Adonis, who was the favourite of the ‘goddess’ Aphrodite (identified with Venus by the Romans; By the way, did you know that most of our planets, months, days of the weeks, clothing, cars, company names & logos, personal names & places are from Greco-Roman ‘gods’). After the Maccabean revolt, certain Jewish Leaders disobeyed Yahweh (in SH’MOT 6, Yahweh stated that His Name would be known throughout the land), and changed our Creator’s name to Ha-Shem, and other sinful practices that Yehoshua our Maschiach/Messiah openly refuted when He confronted them.). Furthermore, the term ‘god’ is a title, originating from the Germans who used this title for their supernatural being ‘Odin.’ The Ancient, Medieval, and even Modern Hebrew languages & dialects never used the title ‘god’ or ‘lord’ (another title originating from England for their kings, knights, & persons of nobility; some say the term ‘lord’ originated with the name ‘Baal’, Canaanite supernatural being). Finally, the ‘father of the letter J’ is Gian Giorgio Trissino, an Italian author and grammarian who lived from 1478 to 1550. He invented the letter J around 1524, but it wasn’t used in the first few ‘Bibles’ or in common print until decades later. William Tyndale was arrested and burned at the stake for (among so many other accusations) stating that we shouldn’t be using the word ‘church’ for the house of Yehoshua our Messiah, instead we should use the word ‘congregation’ or ‘Kehilla or kehillah’. The word ‘church ‘ derives from the word ‘circus’, where (in earlier times) people go to be entertained by dogs, ponies, and the mistreatment of slaves.

  8. George M. Forsythe says:

    The myth about appending the vowels from Adonai to the Tetragrammaton is just one of the common misconceptions and inventions that have been disproven by Dr. Nehemia Gordon in his book, “Shattering the Conspiracy of Silence.” I would suggest that the author of this article read that book and then prayerfully consider rewriting this article.

    1. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Mr. Forsythe, would you defy history? It is well-documented that vowels from other words were placed onto the Tetragrammaton in the Hebrew text to remind the readers in the synagogues not to say the name of God, but to say, “Adonay,” instead. The vowels of words from Adonay, which caused, YaHoWayH later shortened, “YAHWEH,” and Eloah, which caused Jehovah, or Yehovah (see Strong’s #3068), and Elohim, which caused “Yehovih” (see Strong’s Dictionary of Bible Words #3069). When the Catholics invaded synagogues and took their gold and Scriptures, as it was the Hebrew Scriptures in Roman Catholic Libraries scholars noted the vowel points around the name of God YHWH. Nehemia Gordon has found many Hebrew texts with the vowel points of Eloah (e-o-a) placed onto YHWH, which he makes YHVH, to cause Yehovah, but he does not tell of the Hebrew texts with other vowels placed causing different names, Yahweh, or Yehovih. Why does he not tell of the other variations?

  9. Edward Steinhouse says:

    “Adoni” means “my lord.” “Adonai” means “my lords.” I have often wondered about this.

    1. Dr. Eric Rice says:

      Adonai is singular, meaning “Lord.” Adonim (ad-oh-neem), is lords

  10. JC says:

    Thank you for writing about such an interesting topic as Gods personal name according the Bible.

    About pronouniciation, I find the lectures of Nehemia Gordon very informative. I get the impression he knows hebrew quite well. (Take a look at YouTube, and at his website Nehemias Wall.) He explains in detail why he ends up with the conclution that Gods name YHWH is to be pronounced Jehovah/ Yehovah.

    Names are being pronounced different in different languages. That is the case with my name, and yours as well. Also the name of Jesus is pronounced different in different languages. But that fact is not a logic reason to not use his name. Or yours. Or mine. Last but not least, it can not be a valid reason to not use and prounounce Gods personal name, the name he introduced himself with, repeated about 7000 times in the Bible – more than any other biblical name. Even pagan Gods are named in the Bible, so why not The Authors own name…? Plain logic 🙂

    (About film clips related to Gods name. You might be familiar with Monty Python’s clip «The Stoning Scene»? Also on YouTube)

    – Therefore, thank you for highlighting this very interesting and important topic!

  11. Patrick Lordan says:

    Joseph of Arimathea or other Jews at the time wouldn’t have wanted Indy or other Gentiles to tread on the sacred name!

  12. William Lollis says:

    13 Then Moses said to God, “Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?”

    14 And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” Exodus 3:13-14

    According to the Bible God’s name is I AM.

    1. Capt Mitch says:

      I always expand the translation in Exodus 3:14 to “I am the self-existent one.” Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today, and forever. Heb 13:8.

    2. Patrick Tilton says:

      Aa the term ‘Abba’ is used for God — meaning ‘Daddy’ or ‘Papa’, or even just ‘Pop’ — and since God has also been portrayed as an all-seeing Eye situated above a truncated pyramid (as in the Great Seal of the United States), then God could be referred to as “Pop-Eye” and His identifying epithet given to Moses could then be pronounced “I Yam What I Yam!” Notice that His larger-than-normal forearms contain symbols associated with Christ in the 1st Century: the Anchor. His eternal enmity with Bluto suggests a theological identification of the latter with the Devil, the Man of Blood — and ‘Blut’ in German means ‘Blood’. The people of Israel — often likened to God’s ‘spouse’ in Scripture — would be represented by Olive Oyl, over whom God and the Devil battle for favor. And, of course, the baby “Sweet Pea” would represent the Messiah. Who, other than God Himself, can be said to be “strong to the finish” in the ages-long battle against the forces of the Devil?

      1. Craig says:

        “Abba” does not mean ‘Pop’ or ‘daddy’, instead it is a formal word meaning “father”. We should stop saying it means “daddy”.

    3. Rev. Steve Marlowe says:

      Mr. Lollis, Moses asked for God’s name, and God answered, “HaYah Ashar HaYAH,” which means, “The I AM Who the I AM.” And God tells Moses to tell the people that “I AM has sent me to you.” That is “Tell them YAH has sent me to you.” According to the Bible, God’s essential name is YAH. We say rightly, “Halleluyah!” YAH, not Jah, or Yeh. When Christ told the people that He, before Abraham was, is YAH, in that He is their God, they, knowing full well what He was telling them, picked up stones to stone Him for blasphemy (John 8:58). Halleluyah, Praise YAH!

  13. Dr. Eric Rice says:

    Way too many assumptions in the article.
    First: Adonai means “Lord”; Adoni means “my Lord.”
    Second: the vowels for the tetragrammaton are easily known since it was derived from the “to be” verb in Hebrew. Moses asks God who shall I say sent me, and God replies with the first person, common singular form of the “to be” verb, however in Hebrew he can’t go the the elders of Israiel, and say, “I am” sent me. In English we can do it, because English allows for direct and exact quotes, though in Hebrew this totally foreign to the language. Moses must say, “He Is” sent me, however, it may be a name but linguistically it is still a verb. The Masorites understood this, so in the Hebrew texts that are pointed, there are different vowels, depending on its use in a sentenence. No debate warranted.
    Third: Assuming God is “god.” Archeaologists such as your self, always act like you are trying to uncover fact. Your assumption is there is no fact and that you must find fact to create a baseline for fact, then improve on the baseline to create more fact. The problem with this is that you refuse to acknowledge any fact that is already before you, so what you and so many do is create a predjudice against anything that already exists. Such as the Bible, or Moses, or the Law and ultimately God. May God have mercy on your souls.

    1. Dwight Suiter says:

      Hear! Hear!

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Send this to a friend