Posts Tagged ‘YHWH’

THE NAME OF GOD: SHOULD WE USED IT OR NOT?

The Name of God: Should We Used it or Not?

(An Old Exposition about the Name of God)

Most religions in Christianity believe that LORD and God are enough to address the God Almighty. For them, since the Christian Greek Scriptures or the New Testament (from which they claim the manuscripts found were original) has no name of God but rather only Lord and God and so they say it is proper and acceptable to call God in that way. These religions are deliberately criticizing the Jehovah’s Witnesses for using Jehovah as the name of God. For them it is a false and an invented name and an improper way of addressing God. However, despite of this, the Jehovah’s Witnesses are still upholding for their faith using the name Jehovah as the name of God. Some questions the Jehovah’s Witnesses as if why Jehovah is only the acceptable name of God. The Watchtower is claiming that Jehovah is the only acceptable name for God since they believe that they are the true God’s nation and they assert that the name they call upon is the appropriate and the only name of God which is in the true congregation of God. Thus, whoever believes in their presented biblical doctrines then they have to accept this name. For how can you accept the true teachings of the true God through his true congregation and yet denying the name of God that they call upon? On the other hand, the Jehovah’s Witnesses are using many different forms of name of God that differs in pronunciation. You can check those forms of name in https://fromthesunrising.wordpress.com/2010/09/26/the-divine-name/ Moreover, the name Yahweh is recognized by the Watchtower because it is also a possible name of God because it contains the tetragrammaton (YHWH). The Watchtower had accepted the use of the name Jehovah as the name of God since this is the name that is being used and was common to the people as early as in the 14th century and is being written in some literatures by early writers before. While the name Yahweh originated only in 19th century. Some would say, “Since the Watchtower recognize Yahweh, it is also possible to use other names that have tetragrammaton.” While other claims it is possible to call God as Jahveh or Yahveh, still I believe the Watchtower believes in only one name of God just as what Zechariah 14:9 states. So we cannot just accept other names for God especially when the tetragrammaton is not in the formed name of God. Others say Jehovah’s Witnesses is uncertain in the right pronunciation of the original name of God so it is not also proper to say or use Jehovah. That is not a big problem in addressing God. Many names in the Bible differ in some languages. As I have said lately, the Jehovah’s Witnesses are using many different forms of name of God according to their own language. They may differ in pronunciation yet it is all the same in English translation of the name of God which is Jehovah. Others say Yahweh is more correct since it has all the tetragrammaton (YHWH) unlike Jehovah which has JHVH. The Modern Hebrew alphabet does not have Y and W now. It has changed to J and V. For Hebrew Alphabet and Modern Hebrew Alphabet please see this link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hebrew_alphabet#The_alphabet

We all know that some names in Hebrew Bible starts with Y such as Yeshayahu, Yeremeyahu, Ya’akov, Yonah, Yonathan (not quite sure with this one) and others were translated as Isaiah, Jeremiah, Jacob, Jonah and Jonathan in English translation respectively. But we accept all of these translations having  no problem in dealing with these names. Jesus was written as Iesous in Greek and it was believed by many scholars and was accepted by many religions in Christianity that it maybe pronounced as Yeshua or Yehoshua in Hebrew and since this is true we accept the name of Jesus in our Bible translations having no problem on how it was pronounced before. The names in the Bible were written in different languages. Malachi is Malakias in Tagalog. Isaiah is Isaias in Tagalog, Peter is Pedro, John is Juan, Stephen is Esteban and James is Santiago (which is quite so far from English) in Tagalog. All of these names in Tagalog are accepted by Filipino. In other countries they also render these names according to their own language. So what’s the problem in pronouncing the name of God in different ways? We all accept it because of our faith and believe in the identity and personality of the carrier of that name. So why questions the name Jehovah? The question that should be asked by all is should we not use the name of God? The answer can be found in Romans 10:13.

Romans 10:13 For “everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved.” – NWT

13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” – TNIV

Joel 2:31 – 32

31 The sun itself will be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and fear-inspiring day of Jehovah. 32 And it must occur that everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will get away safe; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will prove to be the escaped ones, just as Jehovah has said, and in among the survivors, whom Jehovah is calling.” – NWT

31 The sun will be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood
before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.

32 And everyone who calls
on the name of the LORD will be saved
;
for on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem
there will be deliverance,
as the LORD has said,
even among the survivors
whom the LORD calls. – TNIV

It is said that all people who is calling the name of God will be saved. Is it only by calling the name of God assures our salvation? No. It is clear in James 2:26 that faith without work is dead. Faith without works is useless. It is like having wisdom yet not applying the truth or righteousness in your life. Wisdom alone cannot save us. But what also matters to God is the love. The love for the truth and love for God. The love for the truth is the love for accurate knowledge about the word of God and the love for God is to follow his commands – 1 John 5:3. When you follow his commands then you follow his will and following his will means righteousness. And what is his will concerning his name? We are all required to praise him. All living things are required to praise God – Psalms 150:6. How are going to praise God? Of course the first way is to praise him through his name. Read Psalms 148:1 – 14.

Psalms 148:1-14

Praise Jah, YOU people!
Praise Jehovah from the heavens,
Praise him in the heights.

2 Praise him, all YOU his angels.
Praise him, all YOU his army.

3 Praise him, YOU sun and moon.
Praise him, all YOU stars of light.

4 Praise him, YOU heavens of the heavens,
And YOU waters that are above the heavens.

5 Let them praise the name of Jehovah;
For he himself commanded, and they were created.

6 And he keeps them standing forever, to time indefinite.
A regulation he has given, and it will not pass away.

7 Praise Jehovah from the earth,
YOU sea monsters and all YOU watery deeps,

8 YOU fire and hail, snow and thick smoke,
You tempestuous wind, accomplishing his word,

9 YOU mountains and all YOU hills,
YOU fruit trees and all YOU cedars,

10 YOU wild animals and all YOU domestic animals,
YOU creeping things and winged birds,

11 YOU kings of the earth and all YOU national groups,
YOU princes and all YOU judges of the earth,

12 YOU young men and also YOU virgins,
YOU old men together with boys.

13 Let them praise the name of Jehovah,
For his name alone is unreachably high.
His dignity is above earth and heaven.

14 And he will exalt the horn of his people,
The praise of all his loyal ones,
Of the sons of Israel, the people near to him.
Praise Jah, YOU people!

Take note verse 5 and 13. What does it says? God calls us to praise his name. There are other verses in the Bible that required human to praise the name of God.  Back to Romans 10:13. In other versions it is only “call upon the name of the Lord” but what name should we call upon? When Paul wrote Romans 10:13, he quoted it from Joel 2:32 however, take a look of verse 31. When this is about to happen? It is in the coming Armageddon – on the Great Day of Jehovah. It was said that all who is calling upon the name Jehovah will be saved. Thus, we really need a name for God to call upon for us to have salvation. In addition to this, Psalms 68:4 provides us that Jah (YH = י ה , read backwards) is a short form of the name of God. You can see it in the original translation of KJV. The name Jehovah can be found also in Psalms 83:18 in KJV and Ang Dating Biblia or Ang Biblia. Thus, looking the name Jah in Hebrew Scriptures with tetragrammaton we can see that it has YH. All the names Jah and Jehovah in Hebrew Scriptures which can be found in Interlinear Bible corresponds from proper characters in Hebrew Scriptures for the name of God i.e. YH (

י ה

)and the tetragrammaton YHWH (

י ה ו ה

) How come Jehovah’s Witnesses is sure of the name Jah? It is because in the book of Revelation in the New Testament there is a word Aleluia in Greek which is the same as Halleluyah in Hebrew and when translated in English it becomes Hallelujah which means praise Jah (see Revelation 19:1,3 from NWT and other bible versions). “Hallelujah” or “praise God” is accepted by Christianity. Since Jesus was Iesous in Greek and might be pronounce his name in Hebrew as Yeshua of Yehoshua which has Y in the beginning of his name then it is also true that Jah is a translation of Yah which is Ia in Greek. Thus the last two letters in Allelouia in Greek language [IA] (wherein there is no letter H) was really from Ya which is also Yah. How sure that Ia is Yah? Notice if we are going to see again Psalms 68:4 which has a short form of a name of God which is (

י ה

)  we can also be sure that Ia (Ya) is really Yah because in all short form of names of God in Hebrew it has two characters which is YH. The J and V as modern translation of Y and W in Hebrew was formed now in the name Jehovah. While YH becomes JH in modern Hebrew Alphabet. Thus Jah (Yah) from YH is really the actual and correct and UNDENIABLE short form of the name of God.  Actually, there are early manuscripts that shows the IAW as the name of God in Greek which when dividing the letters will become IA – W and that is Ya (Yah) and W. Thus we may have YHW which was written in early inscriptions in stone in one particular area. I remember I have read an article that this name came from the people called Shasou or Shosou. The article is dated on May 1, 2010. Many scholars believe that this is the name of God.

Psalms 83:18

18 That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH, art the most high over all the earth. – KJV

18 Upang kanilang maalaman na ikaw lamang, na ang pangalan ay JEHOVA, ay Kataastaasan sa buong lupa. – Ang Dating Biblia o Ang Biblia

See this link   http://adb.scripturetext.com/psalms/83.htm

Psalms 68:4

4 Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him. – KJV

Revelation 19:1, 3

1 After these things I heard what was as a loud voice of a great crowd in heaven. They said: “Praise Jah, YOU people! The salvation and the glory and the power belong to our God,

3 And right away for the second time they said: “Praise Jah, YOU people! And the smoke from her goes on ascending forever and ever.” – NWT

1And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God:

3And again they said, Alleluia And her smoke rose up for ever and ever. – KJV

1After these things I heard something like a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, “Hallelujah! Salvation and glory and power belong to our God;

Please see the link below that shows the original writing in Greek of the word “hallelujah”.

http://interlinearbible.org/revelation/19.htm

2BECAUSE HIS JUDGMENTS ARE TRUE AND RIGHTEOUS; for He has judged the great harlot who was corrupting the earth with her immorality, and HE HAS AVENGED THE BLOOD OF HIS BOND-SERVANTS ON HER.”

3And a second time they said, “Hallelujah! HER SMOKE RISES UP FOREVER AND EVER.” – NASB

Please see the following links below for further reading concerning the name of God.

http://www.watchtower.org/e/na/index.htm

http://www.watchtower.org/e/na/index.htm

The word hallelujah was taken from Hebrew word halleluyah wherein the word hallelu means praise followed by YH which is Yah. You can check Psalms 150 in the link below to see the word hallelujah.

http://interlinearbible.org/psalms/150.htm

Notice the other word praise (hallelu) which is also in this link and is connected in the word hallelujah.

Joel 2:31 – 32 is also repeated by Paul in Acts 2:19 – 21

19 And I will give portents in heaven above and signs on earth below, blood and fire and smoke mist; 20 the sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood before the great and illustrious day of Jehovah arrives. 21 And everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved.”’

Take note the “signs in heaven above and signs on earth below” which is in relation to what foretold by Jesus in Luke 21:25.

25 “Also, there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth anguish of nations, not knowing the way out because of the roaring of the sea and [its] agitation,”

The importance of the name of God is also important just as what Revelation 11:18 states.

18 But the nations became wrathful, and your own wrath came, and the appointed time for the dead to be judged, and to give [their] reward to your slaves the prophets and to the holy ones and to those fearing your name, the small and the great, and to bring to ruin those ruining the earth.”

This verse is to be fulfilled on the coming Armageddon. It is noted that God will give the reward to those fearing his name. So the name is required, right?

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The Divine Name in Christian Greek Scriptures (New Testament)

The Divine Name in the New Testament (Christian Greek Scriptures)

(An excerpt taken from the Watchtower site)

God’s Name and the “New Testament”
The name Jehovah
Jehovah’s name as it appears in a monastery in Bordesholm, Germany and over a church door in Fehmarn, Germany
The name Jehovah

THE position of God’s name is unshakable in the Hebrew Scriptures, the “Old Testament.” Although the Jews eventually stopped pronouncing it, their religious beliefs prevented them from removing the name when they made copies of older manuscripts of the Bible. Hence, the Hebrew Scriptures contain God’s name more often than any other name.

With the Christian Greek Scriptures, the “New Testament,” the situation is different. Manuscripts of the book of Revelation (the last book of the Bible) have God’s name in its abbreviated form, “Jah,” (in the word “Hallelujah”). But apart from that, no ancient Greek manuscript that we possess today of the books from Matthew to Revelation contains God’s name in full. Does that mean that the name should not be there? That would be surprising in view of the fact that Jesus’ followers recognized the importance of God’s name, and Jesus taught us to pray for God’s name to be sanctified. So what happened?

To understand this, remember that the manuscripts of the Christian Greek Scriptures that we possess today are not the originals. The actual books written by Matthew, Luke and the other Bible writers were well used and quickly wore out. Hence, copies were made, and when those wore out, further copies were made of those copies. This is what we would expect, since the copies were usually made to be used, not preserved.

There are thousands of copies of the Christian Greek Scriptures in existence today, but most of them were made during or after the fourth century of our Common Era. This suggests a possibility: Did something happen to the text of the Christian Greek Scriptures before the fourth century that resulted in the omission of God’s name? The facts prove that something did.
The Name Was There

We can be sure that the apostle Matthew included God’s name in his Gospel. Why? Because he wrote it originally in Hebrew. In the fourth century, Jerome, who translated the Latin Vulgate, reported: “Matthew, who is also Levi, and who from a publican came to be an apostle, first of all composed a Gospel of Christ in Judaea in the Hebrew language . . . Who translated it after that in Greek is not sufficiently ascertained. Moreover, the Hebrew itself is preserved to this day in the library at Caesarea.”

Since Matthew wrote in Hebrew, it is inconceivable that he did not use God’s name, especially when quoting from parts of the “Old Testament” that contained the name. However, other writers of the second part of the Bible wrote for a worldwide audience in the international language of that time, Greek. Hence, they did not quote from the original Hebrew writings but from the Septuagint Greek version. And even Matthew’s Gospel was eventually translated into Greek. Would God’s name have appeared in these Greek writings?

Well, some very old fragments of the Septuagint Version that actually existed in Jesus’ day have survived down to our day, and it is noteworthy that the personal name of God appeared in them. The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology (Volume 2, page 512) says: “Recent textual discoveries cast doubt on the idea that the compilers of the LXX [Septuagint] translated the tetragrammaton YHWH by kyrios. The oldest LXX MSS (fragments) now available to us have the tetragrammaton written in Heb[rew] characters in the G[ree]k text. This custom was retained by later Jewish translators of the O[ld] T[estament] in the first centuries A.D.” Therefore, whether Jesus and his disciples read the Scriptures in Hebrew or Greek, they would come across the divine name.

The New World Translation of the Christian Greek Scriptures properly uses God’s name 237 times

Thus, Professor George Howard, of the University of Georgia, U.S.A., made this comment: “When the Septuagint which the New Testament church used and quoted contained the Hebrew form of the divine name, the New Testament writers no doubt included the Tetragrammaton in their quotations.” (Biblical Archaeology Review, March 1978, page 14) What authority would they have had to do otherwise?

God’s name remained in Greek translations of the “Old Testament” for a while longer. In the first half of the second century C.E., the Jewish proselyte Aquila made a new translation of the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek, and in this he represented God’s name by the Tetragrammaton in ancient Hebrew characters. In the third century, Origen wrote: “And in the most accurate manuscripts THE NAME occurs in Hebrew characters, yet not in today’s Hebrew [characters], but in the most ancient ones.”

Even in the fourth century, Jerome writes in his prologue to the books of Samuel and Kings: “And we find the name of God, the Tetragrammaton [Four Hebrew letters], in certain Greek volumes even to this day expressed in ancient letters.”

The Removal of the Name

By this time, however, the apostasy foretold by Jesus had taken shape, and the name, although appearing in manuscripts, was used less and less. (Matthew 13:24-30; Acts 20:29, 30) Eventually, many readers did not even recognize what it was and Jerome reports that in his time “certain ignorant ones, because of the similarity of the characters, when they would find [the Tetragrammaton] in Greek books, were accustomed to read Greek letters PIPI.”

In later copies of the Septuagint, God’s name was removed and words like “God” (The·os’) and “Lord” (Ky’ri·os) were substituted. We know that this happened because we have early fragments of the Septuagint where God’s name was included and later copies of those same parts of the Septuagint where God’s name has been removed.

The same thing occurred in the “New Testament,” or Christian Greek Scriptures. Professor George Howard goes on to say: “When the Hebrew form for the divine name was eliminated in favor of Greek substitutes in the Septuagint, it was eliminated also from the New Testament quotations of the Septuagint. . . . Before long the divine name was lost to the Gentile church except insofar as it was reflected in the contracted surrogates or remembered by scholars.”

Hence, while Jews refused to pronounce God’s name, the apostate Christian church managed to remove it completely from Greek language manuscripts of both parts of the Bible, as well as from other language versions.

(Quoted from the articles of Watchtower)

Please see the link below that discusses the claims of the Ante-Nicene Fathers about Jehovah and Jesus and the other proofs that says Trinity is not a biblical doctrine and the other one for further explanations.

http://www.watchtower.org/e/ti/article_03.htm

http://www.thoughts.com/letusreason/blog/gods-name-inside-and-outside-of-the-nt-353447/

http://www.thoughts.com/letusreason/blog/the-tetragrammaton-and-the-christian-greek-scriptu-215563/

http://www.thoughts.com/letusreason/blog/the-septuagint-and-gods-name-yhwh-jhvh-169019/

http://www.thoughts.com/letusreason/blog/yhwh-and-the-nt-syrohexapla-and-other-syriac-mss-165107/