TRUE NAME OF OUR HEAVENLY FATHER AS REVEALED TO MOSES

By Dr. Lee Warren, B.A., D.D.

(c) Jan.-Feb. 1993 PLIM REPORT

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See Related Articles: True Names of the Creator and His Son

Names have meaning

‘Name’ is defined as “A word or words in which an entity is designated,” American Heritage Dictionary. Now those that are even casual readers of the Bible know that the names of some of the famous characters in the Old Testament such as David, Moses, Solomon, Joshua, etc., have meaning. David means "Beloved;" Moses means "to draw out;" Solomon means "Peace;" and Joshua (really Yahshua) means "Yahweh is Salvation."

This is supported by a quote from Dictionary of the Bible, James Hastings, revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 687. “From the earliest times the name given to a child was supposed to indicate some characteristic of the person; of the circumstances, trivial or momentous, connected with his or her birth; of the hopes, beliefs, or feelings of the parent. This is evident from the etymologies (see Gen. 21:3, 6; 27:36; Ex. 2:10; 1 Sam. 4:21, 25:25, etc.), not always reliable, but testifying to the impression that name and facts should correspond...”

It may come as a shock to many to realize that Our Heavenly Father has a proper name, YAHWEH, besides his titles Master, Ruler, Lord, etc. We will show that the name, Yahweh, has meaning and conveys the proper characteristics and nature of Our Heavenly Father.

The Creator first revealed His name to Moses.

Moses was the first man to know the Heavenly Father’s or Elohim’s (God’s) name some 2,513 years after Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden. Before that time the Hebrews referred to the creator as El Shaddi or Almighty Provider (Exo. 6:3). This proves that if anyone had written anything prior to Moses they would not have used the true names, but El Shaddi. The creator’s name was revealed to Moses in a vision by an angel appearing in a burning bush to him (Exo. 3rd Chapter, see illustration p. 14).

The angel gave him a commission to go down into the land of Egypt and tell Pharaoh to let the children of Israel go on a three day journey into the wilderness to worship Him. In response to the angel’s command, Moses, in the King James’ version of the Bible, Exo. 3:13, asked God what was his name? “And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? What shall I say unto them?”

Moses’ question to God, lets those that have eyes to see know, that GOD IS NOT A NAME, BUT A TITLE, even though it is an incorrect title. Now king Solomon asked, "Who hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? Who hath gathered the wind in his fists? Who hath bound the waters in a garment? Who hath established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son's name, if thou canst tell?" (Prov. 30:4). The next step in this discourse is to briefly explain the title Elohim and its meaning.

The correct, pluralistic Hebrew title for God is Elohim which has been misinterpreted Gods.

Now the correct Hebrew title for God is Elohim or El in the short form. El means “power’ or `the strong one,’ ...” as in the “Hebrew phrase `it is in the power (‘el) of my hand to ...’ (e.g. Gen. 31:29),” Dictionary of the Bible, James Hastings, revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 334). The word Elohim is the plural form and it has a singular form Eloah, which is found in the book of Job some 40 times. Elohim is often translated as Gods, plural.

This is a total misunderstanding by many scholars. What is not understood is that Eloah or Eloh is the feminine singular part of Elohim and the “im” is the masculine plural in Hebrew. The ending “im” is added to any masculine Hebrew word to make it plural. The “im” is like our letter “s” which is added to any word to make it plural. The question that naturally arises is: why do you add the “im”, a masculine plural suffix, to a feminine singular noun. The answer is that Eloh (Eloah) + im = Elohim which connotes that Elohim is male and female, in principle, within Himself and does not have to go outside of Himself to bring forth a creation.

In short, Elohim is not a god, looking for a goddess to procreate, but He is the source and substance of the entire universe and all things proceed from Him. “The plural form has always excited great curiosity. It should not be treated as a discernment of a plurality within the being of God, and has developed rather from the usage of emphasizing the importance of one god by seeming to concentrate within Him the being of all the gods.” Dictionary of the Bible, James Hastings, revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 334. In short, the attributes of all the gods have been placed into one monolithic God.

Scholars comment on the pluralistic form, Elohim.

The title Elohim was used in a different context in the scriptures. It was used to describe pagan deities. Encyclopedia Judaica, p. 679 states: “The plural form `elohim' is used not only of pagan 'gods' (e.g., Ex. 12:12; 18:11; 20:3), but also of an individual pagan 'god' (Judg. 11:24; II Kings 1:2ff. (and even of a 'goddess' (I Kings 11:5). In reference to Israel’s 'God' it is used extremely often—more than 2,000 times—and often with the article, ha-elohim, 'the [true] God'.”

Now one may ask, what does the title God mean and how did it find its way into the scriptures? Let us quote Dictionary of the Bible, James Hastings, revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 333. It states: “The English word `God’ is not itself a product of the Jewish-Christian tradition, but existed in the Germanic family of languages in pre-Christian times. Its original sense is doubtful,...’what is invoked’ or ‘what is worshipped by sacrifice’ have been suggested as the primary meaning. With the adoption of the word by Christianity its pre-Christian inherited colouring was  overlaid with the Jewish-Christian tradition and was to a great extent lost.”

A. B. Traina states in the Preface of the Holy Name Bible that the most common error made by most translators in the last 3500 years “...is their elimination of heaven’s revealed Name of the Most High, Yahweh, and the Name of His Son, Yahshua the Messiah, and substituting the names of the local deities of the nations among whom they dwelt (Psalms 96:5), expressly transgressing Yahweh’s commandments as given in Exodus 20:7 and 23:13.”

How did God reveal His name to Moses?

Let us repeat the exact question that Moses asked the angel and closely note the angel’s response in Exo. 3:13-14. “And Moses said unto Elohim (God), Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The Elohim (God) of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And Elohim (God) said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.”

First, it must be understood by the student of metaphysics the conversation that Moses had with the angel in the burning bush was a vision and if you were there you wouldn’t have seen or heard anything. In fact this vision took place in his mind and was not seen by his physical eye, just as in a dream, images are seen in the mind’s eye of the dreamer. A person sleeping in the same bed with the dreamer sees nothing.

“I will be what I will to be” characterizes Yahweh

It is clear that when Moses asked God, “What is his name?” and God answered, “I AM THAT I AM”, that GOD HAS A NAME as stated in the King James Bible. On doing a little bit of investigation we find out what “I AM THAT I AM” means in Hebrew. Quoting Exo. 3:14 in the The Torah (by The Jewish From The World Book Dictionary, publishers of The World Book Encyclopedia, 1967; Publication Society of America) it says: “And God said to Moses, ‘Ehyeh-Asher-Ehyeh’. He continued, ‘Thus shall you say to the Isralites, ‘Ehyeh sent me to you.”

In the footnotes several translations for ‘Ehyeh-Asher-Ehyeh’ (another spelling for ‘Ayah Asher Ayah’) are given: “I Am That I Am”; “I Am Who I Am”; “I Will be What I Will Be”; etc.” (p. 102). James Hastings in the Dictionary of the Bible states: “..Ex 3:14 gives what is intended as an interpretation of the name in the words `I am who I am’ (RSV) or rather `I will be as I will be`; in any case connecting the name with the verb `to be’.....The writer would prefer then to take it ...the verb `to be’ in the sense `he is, he shows himself to be... It should be added that the interpretation of this name is very controversial among scholars ...the word is causative and must mean `he causes to be, brings into being...,” revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 334. Encyclopedia Judaica states: “The explanation of the name as given in Exodus 3:14 Eheyeh-Asher-Eheyeh, “I Am Who I Am,” offers a folk etymology, common in biblical explanation of names rather than a strict scientific one. Like many other Hebrew names in the Bible, the name Yahweh is no doubt a shortened form of what was originally a longer name. It has been suggested that the original, full form of the name was something like Yahweh-Asher-Yihweh, “He brings into existence whatever exists (p. 679).”

We see according to the references that the name of our heavenly father is ‘Ayah-Asher-Ayah’ or ‘I will be what I will to be’, Yahweh, the shortened form. Now King David used the abbreviated 'Yah' for Yahweh in his Psalms which proves the creator has a name. "Sing unto Elohim (God) sing praises to His name: extol Him that rideth upon the heavens by His name Yah (Jah) and rejoice before Him. (Psa. 68:4)" The translators used the letter 'J' instead of 'Y'. There is no letter 'J' or 'J' sound in the Hebrew, Latin, or Greek languages to this day (John 19:19-20). So it would have been impossible for David or anyone to use the letter 'J' when it didn't exist at the time.

The Jews substituted the name.

We see according to the scriptures that Our Heavenly Father’s proper name is “I Will Be What I Will To Be” (Eheyeh-Asher-Eheyeh or Ayah-Asher-Ayah in Hebrew) and its short form is YAHWEH which is represented by four letters YHWH in English and Yod, He, Wau, He in Hebrew (see tetragrammaton on p.13). Now Yahweh, is usually translated into English versions of the Bibles, as ‘the Lord.’

In the following quotes we see how the name Yahweh was substituted by the Jews because of their reverence for it. “... The Jews in later times ceased to pronounce the name, and used in its place substitutes, such as Adonai (‘My Lord’), or ‘The Name.’ The sacred name is sometimes called the Tetragrammaton, consisting in the Hebrew consonantal script of the four letters YHWH.

The pronunciation Jehovah has no authority at all and appeared only in late mediaeval times; it is an attempt to vocalize the Tetragrammaton using the vowels written under it by the scribes, which vowels however were never intended to be combined with the four consonants of this word.” Dictionary of the Bible, James Hastings, revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 334. The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, Vol. X, 15th edition, p. 786 states: “...Jews ceased to use the name Yahweh for two very different reasons...the more common noun Elohim (q.v.), meaning ‘god’ tended to replace Yahweh... At the same time, the divine name was increasingly regarded as too sacred to be uttered; it was thus replaced vocally in the synagogue ritual by the Hebrew word Adonai (My Lord), which was translated as Kyrios (Lord) in the Septuagint, the Greek version of the Old Testament.” The Septuagint, according to The American Heritage Dictionary, is a Greek version of the Old Testament made in the third century B.C., derived for the Latin word for seventy which designates “the 72 Jewish scholars who according to unhistorical traditions completed the translation in 72 days on the Isle of Pharos.”

In Encyclopedia Judaica (p. 679). we have the following quote: “...But at least by the third century B.C.E. the pronunciation of the name YHWH was avoided, and Adonai, “the Lord,” was substituted for it, as evidenced by the use of the Greek word Kyrios, “Lord,” for YHWH in the Septuagint, the translation of the Hebrew Scriptures that was begun by Greek-speaking Jews in that century...” Instead of saying YAHWEH Elohim as it occurs in the Bible, this was read as ‘Adonai’ Elohim, “Lord God.” In the early Middle Ages scholars used vowel points to make the consonant YHWH pronounceable “...to facilitate its  correct traditional reading, the vowel points for ‘Adonai...were 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.” In order to avoid pronouncing even the sacred name ‘Adonia’ for YHWH, the custom was later introduced of saying simply in Hebrew ha-Shem (or Aramaic Shema’, “the Name”) even in such an expression as “Blessed be he that cometh in the name of YHWH” (Psa. 188:26).”

Jeremiah 23:26-27 states: "How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets that prophesy lies? Who think to cause my people to forget my name..., as their fathers have forgotten my name for Baal." Also in Hosea 2:16-17 the prophet said, "And it shall be at that day, saith Yahweh (the Lord) that thou shalt call me Ishi (my husband), and shalt call me no more Baali (my Lord). For I will take away the names of Baalim out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their name." We see historically how the Jews substituted the name Yahweh and this error was accepted as a tradition by Christendom.

The Hebrew letters YHWH take on the form of a man.

In conclusion, we would like to point out an important fact concerning the four Hebrew letters or the tetragrammaton (YHWH), which is our heavenly father's name. When the four letters are placed on top of each other starting with the letter 'Yod' in Hebrew (see illustration on p. 13), they take on the form of a man. Now the 'Yod' represents the father; 'Hey' represents Mother, which shows forth that Yahweh is male and female within Himself; 'Vau' represents the Son, who comes from and is the Father in form; 'Hey' represents the Bride of the Son who are the resurrected souls and angels.

 

Biolography:

American Heritage Dictionary.

Hastings, James, Dictionary of the Bible,   revised edition by Frederick C. Grant and H. H. Rowley, p. 687

Encyclopedia Judaicahe New Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia, Vol. X, 15th edition,

Traina, A. B. Holy Name Bible Scripture Reseearch Assocation

The Torah (by The Jewish From The World Book Dictionary, publishers of The World Book Encyclopedia, 1967; Publication Society of America)

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