GOD'S NAME
All scriptural references are from the Darby Translation, unless otherwise noted

 

Introduction

Almighty God, our Father, has a personal name. Although several Bible versions have substituted His Name for the word "LORD", other Bible versions have kept the name intact. In the original Hebrew language, the name of God was spelled YHWH (known as the tetragrammaton). Because Hebrew writing included only the consonants, and because Jewish superstition prevented readers from speaking the Name aloud, the actual pronunciation of YHWH became lost over time. However, it is believed that the name is pronounced as "Yahweh". The English version of this Name is "Jehovah".

Of the Bible versions which use His Name, some use The Name more often than others. Regardless of frequency though, you can see this name in all of these versions at Exodus 6:3,(Darby) Psalms 83:18,(HCSB) Isaiah 12:2,(ASV) and Isaiah 26:4 (KJV) . Versions which use the Divine Name include:


American Standard Version (Throughout)
Bible in Basic English, The
Bible in Living English, The
Darby Translation (Throughout)
Holman Christian Standard Bible, The

King James Version

Living Bible, The (
Throughout)
New Jerusalem Bible, The (
Throughout)
New World Translation, The (
Throughout)
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (
Throughout)
World English Bible, The
Young's Literal Translation


Interestingly, even though the American Standard Version and the King James Version use the Name, the New American Standard Bible and the New King James Version do not.

The Name in the Old Testament

Many have noticed that the Divine Name is only present in the Old Testament and completely absent in the New Testament, being replaced instead with substitutions such as "God" and "Father". Although there are a scant few Bible versions do publish The Name in the New Testament in an effort to preserve it, the reality is that The Name was not originally placed in the New Testament.

It is natural to question why this happened.

The name of God was well known among the Israelites, as God's law demanded scheduled reading of the Law which contained The Name (Deuteronomy 17:19, 31:11). Various faithful men performed the public reading of the Law (Joshua 8:34, 2 Kings 23:2, Nehemiah 8:1-5, 9:3, 13:1). At this point, there is about a 400 year gap between the finish of the Old Testament and the beginning of the New Testament.

As the New Testament opens, the Jewish nation of Israel was under the regime of the Roman Empire. The Jews worshipped at their synagogues and performed regular readings of the Torah (Old Testament scrolls). We know the reading of the Torah occurred on a regular basis because nobody thought it unusual for Yeshua Messiah (a.k.a. "Jesus Christ" in English) to read to them from the Torah (Luke 4:16-20), and nobody needed explanations when Yeshua/Jesus quoted from the Torah when he taught outside the synagogue (Mark 12:26, Luke 20:42, etc.). The Torah was a well-known body of work throughout the Jewish nation.

Knowing this is important, because, even though the name of Yahweh doesn't actually appear in the New Testament, many references to the Torah are made throughout the New Testament; references which do contain the name of the Father. For example, when the Messiah referred to the text at Deuteronomy 8:3 during his temptation experience (Matthew 4:4), the Torah reference he gave contained the name of Yahweh/Jehovah. More such examples of this referencing can be found at:

Matthew 4:7, referring to Deuteronomy 6:16
Matthew 4:10, referring to Deuteronomy 6:13, 10:20
Luke 19:38, referring to Psalms 118:26
Mark 12:30, referring to Deuteronomy 6:5
Mark 12:31, referring to Leviticus 19:18
Matthew 22:44, referring to Psalms 110:1
Luke 4:18-19, referring to Isaiah 61:1-2
John 6:45, referring to Isaiah 54:13

Although there are many other similar references, this list clearly shows the point: New Testament conversations which don't cite the Name of God refer to Old Testament references that do cite the Name of God. In other words, the Jews living at the time already knew the Name of God very well, so citing of Scripture that did relate to His Name was enough. But that's not all.

 

Christ's Role

Unlike the Old Testament, the New Testament focuses on human salvation through the blood of Yeshua/ Jesus (Matthew 28:19-20, John 3:16) via the New Covenant -- a covenant that the Messiah inaugurated upon his death (Luke 22:20). Without this covenant, no one could be saved (Matthew 1:21). Our salvation depends completely on our belief in the Messiah's blood saving us (John 20:31), meaning that Yeshua/Jesus is the only name that we are saved by (Acts 4:12, Romans 10:13). Before the Messiah's death, mankind remained in a damned state (1 Corinthians 15:22). Therefore, his death was a profound event for all of mankind.

Not only did Yeshua commence the New Covenant with his death, he also become the sole mediator between the mankind and God (1 Timothy 2:5, Hebrews 9:15). Being our sole mediator, the Messiah promised that he would always be with us believers (Matthew 18:20, 28:20). Because Yeshua Messiah is our sole mediator, he instructed us to come to the Father through him when we pray (John 14:13-14, 15:16, 16:23).

Therefore, it all boils down to this:
The Old Testament was all about the Father, and thus the Father's name was solidly established throughout it. It tells us exactly who He is and what He did, no further explanation is necessary. The New Testament, on the other hand, is all about the Son, therefore the focus is on Yeshua Messiah /Jesus and establishing who he was and what he did. Therefore, Just as the Messiah's name was not a prominent feature in the Old Testament, the Father's Name isn't a prominent feature throughout the New Testament.

This, of course, does not diminish Yahweh's Holy Name, as the New Testament reminds the reader that Yahweh is the only true God that is to be worshipped (John 17:3).

 

In Conclusion

The Name of the Father is very important, as He is the Almighty God and the authority in the universe. Because He is our Father and the master Designer of all things, He deserves our honour and respect without question. Part of that honour and respect includes using His name freely (instead of stifling it with superstition) and proudly. Our Yahweh is awesome and should be proclaimed.

Along with this, the name of Yeshua Messiah/Jesus Christ is also very important, because it is through him that we have any salvation at all. He is the Mediator between mankind and God; therefore we do not diminish Christ's name even though we exalt the Father.

Thus, both names are vital to learn, vital to know.


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