What is God’s Name?
Many believe that God’s Name is God or the Lord. However, these are only titles. The revealed personal Name of our Heavenly Father is “Yahweh.” This Name derives from the four Hebrew letters: yod-hey-waw-hey. These four letters are known as the Tetragrammaton. Based on Hebrew and Greek manuscripts, the best known pronunciation is “Yahweh.” Consider the below:
- “The Lord. The Hebrew for his name is Yahweh (often incorrectly spelled ‘Jehovah’; see note on Dt. 28:58). It means ‘He is” or ‘He will be’ and is the third-person from of the verb translated ‘I will be’ in v. 12 and ‘I am’ in v. 14” (NIV Study Bible, note at Exodus 3:15, 1998).
- “The prophets commonly used Yahweh for God, English sometimes as Lord, sometimes as Jehovah, the latter being a hybrid form which should be written Yahweh (YHWH)” (Harper’s Bible Dictionary, 1973).
- “Properly, the name should be pronounced ‘Yahweh’ as it is spelled in many modern versions. In this paraphrase ‘Yahweh’ is translated either ‘Jehovah’ or ‘Lord’ (The Living Bible, note at Exodus 3:15, 1971).
- “Jehovah, n. 1530 Iehoua, borrowing of the New Latin, an erroneous transliteration of the Hebrew name YHWH, often represented as Yahweh” (The Barnhart Concise Dictionary of Etymology, 1995).
Notice that the name “Jehovah” is a false hybrid of our Creator’s Name. This name arose from combining the Tetragrammaton with the vowel points of Adonai. The name Jehovah is also an impossibility based on the fact that neither Hebrew nor Greek contains a ‘J’ sound. Additionally, this was also the last letter to be added to the English alphabet. Rather than “Jesus,” the original 1611 JKV read, “Iesus.” The “v” is also improper, coming from the influence of the Ashkenazi Hebrew, originating in northern Europe. The original was the Hebrew “waw” or “w.”
There are many passages showing the importance of Yahweh’s Name. For example, we are not to take Yahweh’s Name in vain (Ex. 20:7); we are to bless His Name (Ps. 145:21); we are to call upon His Name (Ps. 80:18, 99:6); and we are to declare His Name (Ex. 9:16; Heb. 2:12). These are but a few of the examples showing the significance of our Father’s Name. We encourage all believers to consider calling on the personal Name of their Creator, Yahweh!
Learn more about Yahweh’s Name through our booklet: Your Father’s Name.