At last week’s Bible study, I discussed the name Jehovah and its significance to us today. I also made them aware that the name Jehovah is not found or not mentioned as much in the newly translated versions of the Bible. I saw a lot of surprised faces among the members, and one of the members stood up to ask me two questions: why was that so, and exactly how many times is Jehovah mentioned in the Bible?
The King James version specifically mentions Jehovah 7 times. The name Yahweh, or in 4 letters YHWH, commonly called Jehovah in English, has been mentioned about 7000 times in the ancient Hebrew Bible. Despite Jehovah not being used as often, words like GOD or LORD have been used instead of Jehovah.
In this article, I invite you to join me as we delve into Jehovah, where issues like the meaning of Jehovah, the significance of the name, and bible verses about Jehovah, among others, will be discussed. Carry on reading to get the answers to these questions and more.
What Does the Name Jehovah Mean?
According to some scholars, the name originated from the Hebrew verb “to become,” which scholars believe translates to “to cause to become,” so it fits with the role of the creator. Jehovah is an English translation of its Hebrew name-Yahweh (YHWH). The four letters are referred to as the Tetragrammaton. In ancient Hebrew, the name was considered divine and rarely mentioned.
Jehovah, the Hebrew name, has been translated to revised and authorized versions as “LORD” to distinguish it from the usual form “Lord.” The cause of this was the wrongly interpreting of Leviticus 24:16, where mentioning it was considered an offense. In the Bible, therefore, the name Jehovah according to verses like Exodus 3: 14-15, means I am that I am, eternal, never changing and self-existing God.
Is Jehovah the true name of God?
There is not a universally agreed name of the true name of God. Jehovah is just an English translation of the Hebrew name of God, YHWH. It cannot be said to be the true name of God because different religions and cultures refer to him in their own distinct and unique way. For instance, Jehovah’s Witnesses use the name Jehovah to refer to God, and Muslims use Allah. At the same time, some Christians, due to verses like Isaiah 42:8 or Joel 2:32, believe that Jehovah is the true name of God. Moreover, other Christians use titles like father, God, or Lord. It is, therefore, vital to note that Jehovah cannot be considered the true name of God due to the different religions and cultures; some see it as the true name while others do not.
Reasons Why ‘Jehovah’ Should Not Appear in English Bibles
The word Jehovah is considered historically inaccurate as it emerged from combining the Hebrew name YHWH and the vowels of the word Adonai to make the name. The hybrid name, therefore, does not reflect the divine name as it was used in ancient times or its pronunciation.
The name Jehovah fails to follow the rules of the Hebrew language, which does not have the letter “j.” Therefore, combining “J” and “eh” to form a word cannot be found in Hebrew, where the divine name originates.
Most Jewish and Christian scholars and linguistic experts agree that “Yahveh” or “Yahweh” is a more accurate representation and pronunciation of God’s divine name after extensive language analysis and research of old texts. One reason is that ancient Hebrew lacks a “J” sound.
Some cultures and religions, like Judaism, consider the divine name sacred. Therefore it cannot be spoken or written as it may be considered disrespectful. Alternative terms are used instead, like ‘Hashem”, “The one above,” or “the almighty.”
According to language experts, translating the divine name to Jehovah may cause it to lose its original meaning. Modern translators prefer writing the divine names as LORD or GOD in capital letters.
Was the name Jehovah originally used in the New Testament?
The name Jehovah has never been initially used in the New Testament. The reason is that the New Testament was written in Greek, and the name Jehovah originates from Hebrew. As a result, it cannot be found in the Greek manuscripts of the New Testament as it was not used.
In the New Testament, they originally referred to God in Greek words like “Theos” to mean God or “Kyrios” to mean Lord. It is why the name Jehovah cannot be found in the Origin New Testament. Claims by Watchtower magazine is the name Jehovah was initially in the New Testament but was later taken off. However, there is no evidence to support those claims because Jehovah is not in the original scripts, nor are there any debates regarding removing the word.
What is the Significance of “Jehovah” as God’s Name?
According to Psalm 9:10 and Psalm 91:14, those who know God experience a closer relationship with God. Moreover, God will never abandon those who seek him and know his name, as he will rescue and protect them.
Jehovah as God’s name, according to Psalm 83:17-18 and Ezekiel 36:23, glorifies God as the most high on the earth and cleans his name so that even those who profaned his name will know that he is the only sovereign God.
Bible verses about Jehovah
- Genesis 22:14.God gave Abraham a ram to sacrifice instead of his son, Isaac, and he calls the place Jehovah Jireh to mean that God will provide.
- Exodus 6:3.God tells Moses his name is Jehovah and that that specific name was not told to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
- Exodus 17:15. Talks of Moses building an altar which he called Jehovah Nissi, meaning, Jehovah is my banner.
- Judges 6:24. Gideon builds an altar in honor of God and calls it Jehovah shalom, meaning Lord is peace.
- Isaiah 12:2. The verse says that Jehovah is the source of strength, salvation, and joy.
- Psalm 83:17-18. The psalmist prays for Israel’s enemies to be defeated and brought to shame so they will know of Jehovah’s power and sovereignty.
- Isaiah 26:4. Encourages people to trust and rely on Jehovah forever because he is unchanging.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.