the Millennium

Nehemia Gordon, a Karaite Jew, has now discovered over 1,000 manuscripts with the proper pronunciation Yehovah. Considering this newfound evidence, why do you continue to use Yahweh?

Q.    Nehemia Gordon, a Karaite Jew, has now discovered over 1,000 manuscripts with the proper pronunciation Yehovah. Considering this newfound evidence, why do you continue to use Yahweh?

A.    There are several facts to acknowledge regarding Nehemia Gordon’s “new” finding. To begin with, all these Hebrew documents with the vowel points forming Yehovah are from the 9th century or later and part of the Masoretic manuscripts. According to the overwhelming majority of scholarship, the Masoretes purposefully added the vowel points from Adonai to the Tetragrammaton, forming the hybrid Yehovah (also rendered as Yehowah or Jehovah). In the history of the Ministry, we have actually never seen a scholarly reference confirming Yehovah.

Consider the following: “In the early Middle Ages, when the consonantal text of the Bible was supplied with vowel points to facilitate its correct traditional reading, the vowel points for Adonai with one variation – a sheva (short ‘e’) with the first yod [Y] of YHWH instead of the hataf-patah (short ‘a’) under the aleph of Adonai – was used for YHWH, thus producing the form YeHoWaH. When Christian scholars of Europe first began to study Hebrew they did not understand what this really meant, and they introduced the hybrid name ‘Jehovah’” (Encyclopedia Judaica, vol. 7, p. 680).

“Jehovah, modern form of the Hebrew sacred name of God, probably originally ‘Yahweh.’ From c.300 B.C. the Jews, from motives of piety, uttered the name of God very rarely and eventually not at all, but substituted the title ‘Adonai,’ meaning ‘Lord,’ the vowels of which were written under the consonants of ‘Yahweh.’ In the Middle Ages and later, the vowels of one word with the consonants of the other were misread as Jehovah” (The Collegiate Encyclopedia, vol. 9, p. 580).

“Jehovah….What has been said explains the so-called qeri perpetuum, according to which the consonants of Jehovah are always accompanied in the Hebrew text by the vowels of Adonai except in the cases in which Adonai stands in apposition to Jehovah: in these cases the vowels of Elohim are substituted. The use of a simple shewa in the first syllable of Jehovah, instead of the compound shewa in the corresponding syllable of Adonai and Elohim, is required by the rules of Hebrew grammar governing the use of Shewa” (The Catholic Encyclopedia, vol. VIII, p. 329).

“Jehovah, an erroneous pronunciation of the name of the God of Israel in the Bible, due to pronouncing the vowels of the term ‘Adonay,’ the marginal Masoretic reading with the consonants of the text-reading ‘Yahweh,’ which was not uttered to avoid the profanation of the divine name of magical or other blasphemous purposes. Hence the substitution of ‘Adonay,’ the ‘Lord,’ or ‘Adonay Elohim,’ ‘Lord God.’ The oldest Greek versions use the term ‘Kurios,’ ‘Lord,’ the exact translation of the current Jewish substitute for the original Tetragrammaton Yahweh. The reading ‘Jehovah’ can be traced to the early Middle Ages and until lately was said to have been invented by Peter Gallatin (1518), confessor of Pope Leo X. Recent writers, however, trace it to an earlier date; it is found in Raymond Martin’s Pugeo Fidei (1270)” (Encyclopedia Americana, vol. 16, p. 8.).

“The pronunciation you mentioned [i.e., Yehovah] is a mistake. The Hebrew consonantal text is YHWH and no one really knows how that was pronounced in Old Testament times. At a later date (the latter half of the 2nd millennium CE) Masoretes added vowel signs to the consonantal text. Whenever the Tetragrammaton was written, they added the vowel signs of the word “Adonay,” which means “My Lord” – there was a taboo on pronouncing the Divine name and one was supposed to read the word “Adonay – my Lord.” Much later some started reading the vowel signs together with YHWH and came up with the nonsensical word Jehovah” (email correspondence between Professor Fassberg and Pastor Randy Folliard). Note: Professor Fassberg, Ph.D., is one of the leading professors at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem within its Hebrew language department.

In addition to the fact that scholarship nearly universally confirms that the Masoretes added the vowel points from Adonai to the Tetragrammaton, another issue with Yehovah is that there are other variants based on the vowel pointing within the Masoretic manuscripts. For example, the Leningrad Codex contains at least six different spellings for the divine name. Similar evidence can also be found within the Aleppo and other codices. The fact that we find different pronunciations within the Masoretic manuscripts confirms that they cannot be trusted.

Another issue with Yehovah and this claim of a 1,000 manuscripts is that the pronunciation Yahweh is confirmed within Greek documents from church fathers and Gnostic writings 700 years before the Masoretic documents.

One such example from the Gnostic library is The Secret Book of John. Within this codex, it mentions the name Yahweh and notes, “Eloim and Yawe, two names of God in the Hebrew scriptures…. Yahweh is the name of God (based on the Tetragrammaton, the ineffable four-letter name)” (Dr. Marvin Meyer, The Nag Hammadi Scriptures, p. 127).

The Secret Book of John dates to the second century, as it was known to the church father Irenaeus. This was the same timeframe as Clement of Alexandria, who also confirmed the name. Even though Gnosticism was rightly deemed heretical by the early church, it is another witness to the pronunciation of Yahweh. The fact that these groups were at odds, but agreed on “Yahweh,” is significant and adds credence to this pronunciation. It verifies that “Yahweh” was widely recognized as early as the second century.

Evidence for the short form “Yah” is also found in early Greek documents of the Septuagint, part of the Dead Sea collection, dating to 1 BCE.

Based on these facts, the number of manuscripts found with the vowel points of Yehovah is irrelevant. Scholarship confirms that Yehovah is a hybrid that arose through the vowel points of Adonai. Additionally, antiquity confirms the pronunciation Yahweh through Greek inscriptions dating back to the 2nd century CE, 700 years before any manuscript containing Yehovah.

For additional information, read our online article: The Yehovah Deception.

Also, watch our videos:

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yahka mbaroberto boumanJoshua D La RussaSherri GarciaIsrael Omotayo Recent comment authors
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Dan Barker
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Dan Barker

I understand a manuscript of Mathew has been found that is written in Hebrew and shows the vowel points for YaHoVa not Yaweh-this was introduced by Michael Rood–your comment on this would be appreciated and why do you want to discredit Nehemia Gordon? You showed no valued proof only heresay,I have Don’s bible and he uses the name Yahweh all thru his texts-which I found no trouble with.-which leads me to think something is amiss in using him as a reference.It makes me no difference how people use His name -it won’t cause loss or gain of salvation either way-I… Read more »

Clarence Archer
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Clarence Archer

There is also a Hebrew Luke and 4 pages from John in Hebrew as well. You would know that if you were a pure researcher. It’s hard to kick against the prick.

Research Nehemiah Gordon on YouTube and let go if your bias.

Yeremyah
Guest

There is an article, written by John K. McKee, titled “Is the Hebrew Matthew
an Authentic Document?”, that shows that Nehemia Gordon is in error regarding this.

You can download it from here:

http://yahweh.house/Is_the_Hebrew_Matthew_an_Authentic_Document_TORAH.pdf

(Note: He uses Yeshua and not the correct Yahshua).

Shalom,
Yeremyah

Howard
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Howard

Good answer and I like the fact that you revealed the source of the manuscripts.Defiantly can’t put our faith In an Individual like Mr.Gordan.

Katya Cohen
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Katya Cohen

A few of your refutation points are entirely invalid. The “Gnostic library” citation is worthless. You can’t attack (ad hominem at that) Gordon for not being Messianic and therefore untrustworthy when you’re citing texts from a heretical movement (Gnosticism IS heresy). And the last point, regarding Gordon being a Karaite… that’s an ad hominem attack… “Attack the speaker not his message” which is generally a tactic used to dismiss a person without discussing their comment and/or statements- While you DID do that above, this tactic is low-brow and tends to be reserved for those without confidence in their position or without sufficient… Read more »

Jennifer Roberson
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Jennifer Roberson

Some friends had recommended Rood, but I couldn’t watch more than a few minutes, as they tried to sell their “products” on the Sabbath. I mentioned this and the friends said, well you choose whether to buy on the Sabbath or not. True, but for a “ministry” to market their wares on Sabbath is a No for me. And I definitely do not trust the teachings of someone who denies the Messiah. I do however trust the teachings of YRM as they line up with scripture.

Michael Thomas
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Nehemia Gordon’s associations are really most unfortunate. A short clip of him explaining his ideas about the Name is shown in a German film about Jehovah’s Witnesses, The name of God. I tried to warn him that this would do his reputation no good, but it seems he was happy that his ‘friends’ agreed with him on the Name. He is also, as already pointed out, associated with Michael Rood, a most disreputable character with a history of false prophecies and past association with a cult called The Way International. In trying to research Gordon’s claims it has been so… Read more »

Sherri Garcia
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Sherri Garcia

Thank you Michael Thomas for your words of truth about Mr. Rood. I have expressed the same to people I love in Hope’s the seeds will lead them also to truth about Mr. Rood.
Blessings from Payson AZ Sherri

Tehillim 130
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Tehillim 130

Not even once in any hebrew manuscripts are the Yahweh, what is your suource that creator’s name is Yahweh? At least Nehemiah thuosends of hebrew documents with full wowel and I think 4000 times in Aleppo codex with YeH-VaH with the missing wowel. What’s your suource for Yahweh ? So be careful what you say and think about His name!

Israel Omotayo
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Israel Omotayo

May YAHWEH bless you for the good work you are doing. Shalom.

roberto bouman
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roberto bouman

this already clear for many years….http://www.divine-name.info/index.htm

Joshua D La Russa
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Joshua D La Russa

What I do not understand is how any one can just go on a “most likely”? In other words, since all we have is YHWH, then no one knows what His name is. And who did the Jews think they were to take away the name? It’s not up to them to prevent people from breaking the 3rd commandment. Why not take away all the commandments so that no one could sin? They say they took it away so that no one could profane it, but that’s not up to them. That’s between God and the sinner. In conclusion, YHWH… Read more »

yahka mba
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I have looked at the pronunciation of the Holy Name in Hebrew Grammar. See https://www.facebook.com/yahka.mba/posts/1037583256357589