Jehovah

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Jehovah Jehovah Jireh Jehovah Rapha Jehovah Nissi Jehovah Shalom Jehovah Raah Jehovah Tsidkenu Jehovah Shammah

The Hebrew word יהוה (English: Jehovah) means "the existing One"[1].

When Moses asked God his name, God replied: I AM THAT I AM [2]. The Name "I Am" (הוה) is the last three letters of the Hebrew word for "the existing One", and is the present tense of the Hebrew language. The Name "I Am" and "the existing One" are names of God that refer to his glory before the world began, and to his continuing glory and supreme dominion.

In the New Testament, a great light appeared to Paul the Apostle, and a voice said: "I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom thou persecutest". Jesus also said of himself: "before Abraham was, I am."

Use of the word יהוה in the Bible

The Hebrew word יהוה occurs 5,527 times in the Old Testament, and is most often written LORD (all capital letters) in the English Old Testament, and as Jehovah and JEHOVAH only 5 times. The first and last occurence of the word LORD in the Old Testament are:

Genesis 2:4 - These [are] the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens,
Malachi 4:5 - Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:

The Greek word translated "Lord" in the English New Testament is "Kurius", and its meaning may be in reference to Jehovah or Adonai. Adonai is also translated "Lord" (small capital letters) in the English Old Testament. The word Kurius occurs 687 times in the New testament, and the first and last occurences of this word are:

Matthew 1:20 - But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
Revelation 22:21 - The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

Pronounciation and Transcription

This Name of God is considered Holy by the Jews, and therefore is never spoken. Instead of adding vowels to the Hebrew consonants yod (י), he (ה), vav (ו), and he (ה) - Hebrew is written from right to left, while English is written from left to right - most Jews will pronounce "adonay" (my Lord) or "hashem" (the Name) when confronted with this word.

William Tyndale (d.1536) included the vowels for the word "adonay" with the consonants to the word "yhvh" in his English translation of the Old Testament, creating the basis for the English word 'Jehovah'. Tyndale's translation is similar to pronouncing "adonay" or "hashem" as the pronouciation does not mirror the original Hebrew. If vowels were added to the Hebrew name of God, it would probably be pronounced as Yah-veh or Yah-weh. [3]

Names of Jehovah in the Old Testament

Scripture Name Meaning
Exodus 6:3 Jehovah The Existing One
Genesis 22:14 Jehovah Jireh The LORD sees (provides)
Exodus 15:26 Jehovah Rapha The LORD your healer
Exodus 17:15 Jehovah Nissi The LORD is my Banner
Judges 6:24 Jehovah Shalom The LORD is peace
Psalms 23:1 Jehovah Raah The LORD my shepherd
Jeremiah 23:6 Jehovah Tsidkenu The LORD our Righteousness
Ezekiel 48:35 Jehovah Shammah The LORD is there
Genesis 2:4 Jehovah Elohim The LORD God
Psalms 13:3 Jehovah Elohai The LORD my God
Isaiah 64:8 Jehovah Avinu The LORD our Father
Genesis 14:22 Jehovah El Elyon The LORD Most High God
Isaiah 17:6 Jehovah Elohai Israel The LORD God of Israel
Isaiah 38:5 Jehovah Elohei David The LORD God of David
Exodus 31:13 Jehovah Mekaddishkem The LORD who sanctifies you
I Samuel 1:3 Jehovah Tseva’ot The LORD of Hosts
Leviticus 19:3 Jehovah Eleheikhem The LORD your God
Psalms 18:2 Jehovah Seh'lah The LORD my rock
Psalms 19:14 Jehovah tsuri v’goali The LORD my strength and redeemer
Psalms 95:6 Jehovah 'Asenu The LORD our Maker
Psalms 27:1 Jehovah 'ori The LORD is my light
Psalms 68:4 JAH abbreviation of LORD

References

  1. HEBREW LEXICON -- STRONG'S NUMBER 3068
  2. Exodus 3:14
  3. Biblical Hebrew, An Introductory Grammar, Page H. Kelly, William B Eerdmans Publishing Company, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1992, Pg. 32.


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